Club Q&A


Photo by Caleb Wright

Junior Asil Mithani talks about red ribbon week ideas during YouGo StuCo. Mithani led a discussion about possible dress up days and other ways for members to earn points.

With clubs returning this school year and new ones coming, “The Hawk Eye” interviewed club officers. Student Council President Paige Zagumny, National Honor Society (NHS) Vice President Ishrita Pol, Science National Honor Society (SNHS) Vice President Abigail Nguyen, Key Club Treasurer Joshua Park, and eSports sponsor Jaden Gorham shared about their clubs and some of the things they faced during the pandemic.


Q: What are the benefits of your club?


Senior Paige Zagumny, Student Council: “Student Council is an organization that contributes to, plans and executes most of the school events, such as school pride, volunteer service opportunities, donation events, dress up days and activities related to sports. It gives you the opportunity to learn leadership skills and be more active at your school.”


Senior Ishrita Pol, NHS: “NHS is an honor society dedicated to [serving] the community. Our organization is meant to reach out to people in our community and campus to see  what ways we can help. We do a lot of volunteer opportunities. We [have] four pillars that represent the organization: service, character, scholarship and citizenship. Once you get into the organization, it’s a community of people that are motivated to give back and serve the community they have grown up in.”


Senior Abigail Nguyen, SNHS: “SNHS is a science, and sometimes math-based, club that works with volunteering and doing activities for our school. We do things like demo team, which is where we go to schools or museums and do a science show for them. We also do volunteer tutoring in math and science for our school, and we have our own activities such as volunteer work.”


Junior Joshua Park, Key Club: “Key Club is a service-based organization [that] strives to cultivate leadership qualities from its members. Our overall goal is to encourage leadership among our members and help our community. Key Club is a great way to meet new people: you can meet upperclassmen and underclassmen. It’s also a way to develop permanent friendships.”


eSports sponsor Jaden Gorham: “We compete on a website called Our school gets a pass to compete and lets as many kids compete as long as we pay that upfront cost. Those competitions consist of “Rocket League” and “League of Legends” right now. We are looking to field some new competitive teams and were hoping to expand which games we compete in. [I’m] trying to get this club started [because] we are piloting the first eSports course in the spring semester. Character development [and] nutrition development [are aspects to consider because] a lot of kids that are into [eSports] maybe aren’t the most physically active. We want all sorts of people to get together.”


Q: What is different about this year from previous years?


Zagumny: “I’ve had a different experience every single year in Student Council. Freshman year, I wasn’t an officer, so [I had] an outside look participating in all the fun events. Now we have way more of a virtual setup since we hit COVID-19. We don’t take paperwork or cash — it’s all online or virtual payments. A lot of the events are also monitored or have masks required. We’ve been having more outside events than in the past. We’re getting back into it, [and are] hoping to have our homecoming dance and parade decorating this year.”


Pol: “We are facing the aftermath of [COVID-19] effects. Volunteer opportunities and chances to get involved on campus are [fewer] because people are coming back. A lot of clubs have been inactive so we are trying to get started up again. We had officer elections at weird times last year because of [COVID-19], so we have re-elections coming up. There [are] a lot of things in place that are slowly getting started back up because everyone was out for almost two years.”


Nguyen: “Due to [COVID-19,] there [are] a lot of [scenarios] where it’s harder for us to have these activities that are safe for all of our members. We are trying to do a lot more things online, but at the same time, we are trying to return back to some of our normal activities such as a demo team; we are currently in the process of putting that together.”


Park: “Last year was difficult for everybody. We had a 15 hour volunteer requirement because of [COVID-19] and the limited volunteer opportunities. We have changed it back to 30 hours for the year. We’ve also changed sponsors from Ms. Genuardi to Mr. Carr.”


Gorham: “Last year we had about 60 kids who were enrolled in it. Since [COVID-19] was pretty much [preventing] clubs from meeting in-person, we just stayed away from that and stuck to all of our messages on Webex. I’d commune with individual teams, but we fielded five “League of Legends” rosters so that’s 25 people actively playing. We’re hoping to get more players involved whether that’s competitive or casual. But I’ve had a lot of individuals who are certainly interested in joining just [wanting] to make some friends. They don’t want to compete with other schools in the area and that’s totally fine. We want to offer that and so we’re looking to give opportunities to both sides of the spectrum.”


Q: Did the pandemic affect how things are usually done?


Zagumny: “We were still able to keep it running, [and] it never shut down. With spirit days it gives kids more of an opportunity to share their school spirit in an online format. But now they get to post it on Instagram and Snapchat or whatever. It lets more people in their life see that aspect of them and how involved they are. The pandemic definitely helped us as an officer team and upper leadership roles. We learned how to better lead the club and how we need to get things done. But it has put us at a disadvantage with our main goals in student council being school events that we weren’t able to hold.”


Pol: “All or most of our volunteer opportunities had to be virtual. A lot of the ones in person were less group-oriented activities so they were fundraisers. For example, we had a diaper donation drive and canned food drives. These were things where you didn’t have to be near groups of people, and were less hands on. We had small group activities such as clean up events at Arbor Hills Nature Preserve. We were trying to limit as much big group interaction as possible.”


Nguyen: “In the moment it did negatively affect how we had to run, especially last year there were a lot of adjustments that had to be made. We had to switch from paper documents to online documents, we had to find these activities that were safe for the pandemic. I’d say that now it had a pretty positive impact, since now we have the foundation for these online activities in place, and it makes it a little more accessible to everyone even in a normal non [COVID-19] year.”


Park: “Usually we help our community a lot, [and] we help a lot of our food banks. But last year we had to look for online and virtual opportunities for people to still help but without physically meeting people. So it was difficult to find volunteer opportunities [for] people [to] get involved in and meet the hour requirements.”


Gorham: “Seeing how the club was created in the midst of the pandemic [in] the fall semester from last year, we don’t know [anything] but [the pandemic]. Out of the 50 to 60 kids that were heavily involved last year, I only met a handful of them, because everyone was stuck at home. So we were competing and conversing, but everything was done through Webex.”


Q: Are there any requirements, documents or meetings new people should know about?


Zagumny: “For meetings we will be doing once a month or two meetings a month, [but] we haven’t exactly decided due to [COVID-19]. Before and after school, kids will generally show up in the cafeteria annex to check in. To join, sign the membership code of conduct and then payment which includes t-shirt fees.”


Pol: “Being inducted into the club will be based on accumulated grades and your GPA. Due to [COVID-19] most of our info will be on Canvas, so once you’ve been inducted you’ll be put on our Canvas. All the information will be on there, [such as] how to submit service hours, you can watch pre-recorded meetings where the officers get together to give the announcements for that month. We would technically meet in our sponsor’s classroom, which is Ms. Perkins, but since we’ve been virtual for the past two years, we don’t know if we’re going to be having in person meetings. Hopefully we will spring semester of this year.”


Nguyen: “In order to get in, we send out invitation letters to everyone eligible, in about May. You have to join the Canvas, then fill out your enrollment form which is already in the Canvas. Then you pay your [$20] dues which are ongoing right now. We are working on an induction ceremony which will probably be virtual due to [COVID-19] [for] people last year [who] weren’t able to be inducted because we had a bit of a late start. Virtual meetings will be sent out with information on what’s coming up, to fill in members with what’s going on and to provide more opportunities to volunteer. [We’re] hoping to switch to in person advisory meetings so people can ask questions easier.”


Park: “Everyone is welcome to join the club. The main documents are the registration form which can be found on our Canvas or our website. Then pay your $15 dues to Mr. Carr, the choir teacher. We don’t have a set meeting place, [but] we did our first meeting in Ms. Genuardi’s room. But that’s subject to change because our club is getting bigger by the minute, and we are getting new members every day. So as we get more members, we need to find a place to hold all of us. We will let our members know where our meetings are by Canvas or Instagram.”


Gorham: “No requirements to join, all our welcome. The sign up sheet is open for people to join. Last year we were officially a club and there [were] almost no casual side, as in no playing to chill and have fun side of the club, and no in-person meetings. We were exclusively competing. This year since we’re hoping to get more people in the club in a lot of different ways all that’s getting fleshed out. We’re only just now assembling our group of officers and then they, with me, [are going to] figure out what this club wants to look like. They are working on getting me a space. I believe hopefully this year we’re going to get our own computer lab or shared with another program. We’re hoping to get our own space that has all the equipment that we need. But for now until that space is allocated to us, we’ll be having some nice meetups in my classroom or a lot of our announcements will happen over Canvas or WebEx.”


Clubs during advisory are set to be every Friday during advisory starting on Sept. 17.