Here at EHHS, there are multiple types of clubs available for students. These clubs allow for a variety of students to come together through common goals and interests which may be hard to do during normal school hours.
In the high school community, many students and teachers are aware of the struggles that some students go through on a daily basis. Among many of these issues is the fear of students being isolated or left out. For many students that have this problem, it is because they have different and unique interests from their peers. Little do they know, there is likely a club that is perfect for their interests that can help with these problems. Joining a club can provide a sense of community for a student that may have these problems. In a high school environment, finding a community is harder than a lot of people think.
As a student myself, I think it is essential for students to be a part of at least one club orteam. Being a part of either one provides a feeling of community among its members, which, yes, people can experience this outside of school, but many students have trouble connecting with others like mentioned before for a variety
of reasons. Not to mention, being a part of a club is often free of charge and is easy to access since many clubs meet right here in EHHS after school.
Some of my peers in EHHS have already discovered and joined clubs that fit their interests and have gotten involved with them. One of these students is freshman Derrick Cody, who is involved in the new ESports club and the band. Derrick, who joined both clubs because of his passion for both gaming and music, has already seen the benefits of joining a club. “When I started band, I made a lot more friends and met people that are very nice. It teached me how to make music,” said Derrick. He also added that joining the ESports club helped develop communication skills as well as his reflexes. Fellow ESports club member Michael Roberts made a similar point, saying how these clubs are a unique experience for everyone involved and provide skills that can’t be learned in normal school classes. For example, he got to learn about all about computers in computer club, which is only something he can get to learn about through clubs.
Just like students, some teachers have even seen the benefits of clubs in high school and have gotten themselves involved. One teacher that has done this is Mr. Adam Gardner, who has been a club leader for the video game club, the debate club, and currently the ESports club. He too believes that clubs are an important aspect of school, saying, “Clubs are important for the school because they offer a chance for students to participate in something that interests them. These clubs foster a sense of community by allowing them to build relationships with their peers and adults in the building that they may not otherwise interact with.” However, he mentioned the fact that clubs need participation and effort from students in order to actually be successful. “Clubs, along with sports and other activities, are an extension of the school culture. In order for these clubs to be successful there needs to be student buy-in or else you will not get their participation and engagement,” said Mr. Gardner.
Luckily for him, he has not had a problem with effort from his students, which was evident when I got a sneak peak at one of the ESports club’s meetings. Not only was Gardner’s room filled as if it were any other class, but the students seemed to have a special bond between them. Everyone was involved with each other, sharing laughs, and being enthusiastic during the meeting. Seeing this from a club that was just founded around a month ago shows how helpful joining one can be. The students in the club may not have known each other a couple of weeks before the club, but because of the club, they were able to connect with each other based on common interests, which clearly helped them make new friends and feel like a part of a community.
Although there are not a huge amount of clubs in EHHS, there is always room for more. This part is up to students, as it is their responsibility to come to teachers with club ideas. “I have only been involved in clubs and activities that the students have shown an interest in or have specifically asked for,” said Mr. Gardner. Therefore, if you are a student with a club idea, you should bring it up to one of your teachers to see what you can make out if it. It is likely that there are fellow students that have the same idea or would like to be involved with your idea, but they too are hesitant to say something about it. Not to mention, a lot of teachers would like to get involved, as Mr. Gardner said, “It's always a rewarding experience and an honor when the students think of you as more than a teacher but as someone they want to have advise, coach, and mentor them.” With all of this being said, I hope to see clubs continue to play a significant role here for everyone at EHHS.