As a farewell to graduating seniors, Executive Council held one final meeting with the class of 2013. On Tuesday, May 7, students celebrated with food, cheers and tears. An awed silence settled over the group when Ingrid Chen, graduating senior, presented her last speech as Executive President to her members.
“Today (May 14) was the first Tuesday that I wasn’t at an executive meeting and I feel a bit lost,” wrote Chen in an email. “I’m home early when I should be working on posters, or dance decorations, or counting ballots. Our teamwork is amazing. I don’t think any other combination of kids would be able to accomplish what we have done for both our school and our community this past year.”
Chen first joined Executive Council at the start of her sophomore year. After having lost the sophomore class president race, she was invited to join the council by Ms. Mayfield, the club adviser and math teacher. Mayfield had called Chen out of class one to day to ask her. Chen had not realized then that the school was divided into several class councils as well as a student body council. Since she had participated in the freshman council, she knew she still wanted to help in any way possible
“I’m so glad that Ms.Mayfield came and got me that one day because I would’ve never known about such an amazing group. I’m almost glad I didn’t win the sophomore class president position,” wrote Chen.
At the Award Ceremony on May 7, Chen officially relinquished her title to Hannah Dailey, current junior.
“‘It was such a tough race this year,” wrote Chen. “Everyone who ran for executive council positions were already part of the council, and were already friends. I thought there would be some friendship break-ups, but the bond we built together this year proved me wrong. We all support and encourage each other. I’m both elated and relieved that I will be leaving this position to Hannah, because I know from working with her this year, that she will make an amazing president.”
Chen definitely plans on joining the student council in her college years. “I heard that council activities are a lot different in university, but I’ll never know what I’m missing if I don’t try it out for myself first,” wrote Chen.
Duane Barksdale, graduating senior, is currently unsure if he will or will not continue student council in college. “But it’s definitely a possibility. I want to spend a lot of time trying things that I didn’t have the opportunity to try in high school, but I’d also like to continue clubs that I started in high school, so it’s possible,” wrote Barksdale in an email.
Whether Barksdale does or does not join a student council in college, he will miss the one he was part of in high school. “I’ll miss the people on the council most of all. Most of the council had a great work ethic and were excited to be a part of something as awesome as Exec, so getting to work with them on projects from dances to the Food Drive was fantastic,” wrote Barksdale.
Barksdale will attend college with confidence in next year’s officers. “I feel like they are all hard-working and will definitely work hard to continue the legacy that is Executive Council. I know of a lot of people in general staying on the council that are great at planning, organizing, and actually getting things done.”
Barksdale’s first year on the council had only been two years ago. At the end of his sophomore year, Chen asked Barksdale to join, saying that it was a really great club. “I also wanted to see if I could have an actual impact on the school, and Executive Council seemed like it provided the opportunity to do just that,” wrote Barksdale.
In his two years on the council, Barksdale’s most memorable moment had been when notified that the 2011 Food Drive had been the most successful drive at LRHS. “It felt amazing to be a part of a group of students and teachers that were responsible for such a milestone in Leesville’s history,” wrote Barksdale.
There is only one project Barksdale can recall that he wishes would have been differently. “I really wish we would have had the chance to work with Habitat for Humanity together. I know that everyone on the council would be awesome to work with, especially for such an awesome cause,” wrote Barksdale.
Neema Kimaru, graduating senior, only regrets not having run for an officer position as she had thought at the time she would not have had enough time to properly fill the duties of an officer. Maybe Kimaru will run for an officer position in college, as she will definitely be volunteering and involved in student government.
Similar to Barksdale, Kimaru has been on the council for two years, since the beginning of her junior year. “I’ll miss days when we make decorations for the dances because we always have the best conversations and we always have so much fun,” said Kimaru.
Looking back on her years on Executive Council Kiruma has loved every minute of it. She always tried to involved as often and as possible. “One of my favorite memories is going to the food bank and volunteering there because I’d never done it before. It was a good experience and I felt like I was really helping out my community,” said Kiruma. “It (Executive Council) is a lot of work, but it makes you feel so good, so hopeful. You get to see and experience what you’re working on.”
Kiruma believes that next year’s council will be able to work as diligently as they did this year. “I think they’re going to do a fantastic job. I’m excited to hear what’s happening, even though I’ll be in college. I’m really happy for them,” said Kiruma.
While the graduating seniors will miss each other, the underclassman and the high school Executive Council, they are not the only ones who will feel that something lacks.
“I am really going to miss all of our seniors from Exec. who are graduating,” wrote Daley in an email. “They have made up such a huge part of the council, and they are going to be missed so much!”
With the seniors, Daley has created many memorable moments. “The most memorable moments from Exec have been the last minute, or extra activities. It was so fun decorating for Winterfest, getting there and decorating for hours while just talking,” wrote Daley. “Also dropping off the good at the food bank was fun, doing the community a service together brought us closer together!”
As the new president, Daley has already begun organizing activities for the 2013-2014 school year. “I’m excited for everything! There are so many possibilities, and while it can be overwhelming, I really can’t wait to see how all of our events turn out!” wrote Daley.
Wherever the graduating seniors end up, whatever they choose to do, they can be content in knowing that they have impacted so many others.