By Harrison Lange
It’s no secret our school, just like so many others, has changed drastically due to COVID-19. All classes and extracurricular activities now take place solely online. School clubs facing this new challenge have found ways to meet all together using applications, such as Zoom and Google Meet, to communicate and partake in group activities. However, meeting online has many challenges in itself. Many students have connectivity issues, some don’t have access to the Internet, and a great deal of the hands-on learning exercises clubs have done in the past are canceled. As a result, getting people interested in clubs is much more difficult than it was before. One of the few ways clubs obtain new members is through the app Minga.
One of the clubs that I had the opportunity to interview was the Future Farmers of America, or FFA. The FFA is a club which offers certain scholarships and volunteer work. Any student in an agriculture class is a member, although attendance is not mandatory. This club meets once a month, in order to be flexible for everyone involved. With over 300 members, club president Camille Heskett expressed concerns about the connectivity issues with students. During the interview, Camille talked about how due to the accessibility for many students, Zoom has enabled students that were not previously able to attend their club. However, this has also limited attendance for some of the other members. Camille expressed that because FFA can no longer give grad credits, due to Covid, many members have stopped attending. Though it is easier to get in contact with the group members, personal connections are strained and many out of school activities have been canceled. However, Camille shares, “Our club is so tightly bound to each other that we have been able to get over most of the problems.”
I also had the opportunity to obtain an interview with the club president of A Triumphant Me, Remy Corbin. She described the club as a place “where students come to be inspired, as well as gain tools and resources needed to become the best version of themselves.” The club has been meeting through Zoom and their attendance has thankfully increased, due to people having more time on their hands and a flexible schedule. Sadly, Covid-19 has kept A Triumphant Me from doing many of the bonding activities it has done previously. When asked why the club is important to the president and its members, Remy said, “This club has been very important to me because I am able to share everything I am passionate about with a group of amazing students, and I think all of us leave the meeting feeling even better than when we came into the meeting. It has been a place where we have all been able to grow as people together, and I don’t think there is anything quite like it!”
We can thank our excellent staff and fellow students for keeping the school community alive during this time. Our school has been able to stick together and get through this uneasy period, even through only using the virtual world of Zoom.