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The official student newspaper of Walter Johnson High School

The Pitch

The official student newspaper of Walter Johnson High School

The Pitch

The official student newspaper of Walter Johnson High School

The Pitch

Leadership Class Experiences Surge in New Applicants

As this year’s Leadership class has led many highly successful fundraisers and school events, more rising seniors have expressed interest in giving back to the school by applying for the class. Approximately 90 junior students asked to be enrolled in the 2010-2011 Leadership class, whereas last year only 50-60 students desired to be in the course. 

This increased interest in the Leadership class comes as no surprise to social studies teacher and class advisor Nico Atencio. He attributes the intense benevolence of this year’s class to the great interest in enrollment in the 2010-2011 Leadership class.

 “There has always been a lot of excitement about the Leadership class,” said Atencio. “The juniors this year have seen all the activities and projects that the Leadership class has participated in and I think they want to be able to give back to the school.”

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Out of the approximately 90 students who wanted to be in the class, only 35 students were accepted after a required application process. Students had to obtain an information packets that included directions on four teacher recommendations in addition to a personal statement due in February. Atencio goes through the applicants and creates a qualifying group who have turned everything in and have positive comments from their teachers. The personal statements of applicants showed “they know what they are getting themselves into with this class and that they will be able to bring something to the class,” Atencio said.  After that, he creates a random drawing for the final 35 or so students.

Senior Jessica Peterson, who is currently in leadership, was glad this year to devote her time to worthy causes.

“I just wanted to have things to do after school that benefited myself and others,” she said.

Atencio sees first-hand how grateful students are to the school in his three years as the advisor.

“The one thing that is really a great thing about the class is that it does give seniors who have received a lot from the school [and who] are in a place with their maturity to be able to say this has been a good experience,” said Atenico.

In the first semester, students were required to be a part of two projects which could either be assigned or developed on their own. WJ’s leadership class has created and participated in many good deeds, such as a Building Services Appreciation Lunch and a Basketball Tournament for the Nothing But Nets Campaign, a UN charity that raises money for malaria nets  in Africa. The Pennies for Patients fundraiser, which raises money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma society, took up the majority of the class’ second semester.

Peterson took control of making the Mad Cows group an official club. In addition, she ran PPP, Pong for Pennies for Patients, for Pennies for Patients. She believes her leadership experience has truly prepared her for later in life.

“Leadership has helped me be more prepared for college in being able to get a project and have to make it happen all on my own or with a couple group members,” she said. “It’s also made me realize how much we can do for other people even as a teenager.”

Junior Zachary Hazlett will be in next year’s leadership class and is excited to be a part of such a positive representation of the WJ community.

“All the students are responsible, creative, hard working and very successful in making WJ a more fun and a better place,” he said.

Hazlett also looks forward to the relationships he will have while in the class.

“The class is a fun place and great opportunity, taught by a teacher [who] is very interactive with his students,” he said. “It is a class that I know I will have friends [who] share some of the same goals [as me].”

 


STEFANY CARTY CONTRIBUTED TO THIS REPORT.

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Katie Levingston
Katie Levingston, Online Editor in Chief
Although she seems quiet on the outside, 2010-2011 Online Editor-in-Chief Katie Levingston is bursting with energy on the inside. A former young Parisian in her second year on staff, Katie models her life after certain television shows, namely Gilmore Girls and Friends. She is unnaturally familiar with said sitcoms; she longs for the day when she can eat anything she wants and spend all her time at Central Perk in the Village. Nothing happens to her in real life, it all happens in Stars Hollow or in Monica’s apartment… okay? When she’s not practicing her speed-talking, she plays a mean clarinet in many different musical groups and spends inordinate amounts of time editing videos for the website. Among her most pressing decisions in life are what to order at a restaurant and which scarf to wear that day. She is insanely proud of her thick curly hair when it cooperates. She’s super excited to be a part of the up-and-coming wjpitch.com. Her doppelganger Anne Hathaway says, "Hi!"
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