The school year is filled with assemblies, but not all of them give away $10,000 worth of scholarships. The Student of the Semester assembly on 22. Feb publically recognized students nominated by their teachers for exemplary work. In addition, 2 seniors received their $5,000 scholarships from Rolls Royce.
This year’s assembly was themed “The Classies” to correlate with the February Oscars. ASB president Ashley Balbuena was thrilled with the changes ASB has made from previous assemblies.
“The assembly opens up with a dance number and then it goes on to teacher nomination awards,” said Balbuena. “We are actually changing it up this year because admin wanted to incorporate perfect attendance awards and 4.0 awards, and then we have our Rolls-Royce announcements.”
Previously ASB recognized students for every quarter, but this year they have changed that to Student of the Semester. Balbuena and the ASB made this decision based on the opinions they were getting from students and teachers.
“We got a lot of feedback from teachers and students that they were too frequent, the same people were getting nominated, and it would just be better if we had a semester assembly insead,” said Balbuena.
Science teacher Scott McComb is not so enthusiastic about this recent change but understands the reasoning behind the decision.
“Can’t say I’m a huge fan, but on the one hand I get it, I mean there’s a lot that ASB does and trying to fit in one more assembly, I can understand how that would be a challenge,” said McComb. “The drawback is that there are a lot of deserving students. And I think with one a semester instead of quarter, it will be hard to recognize more deserving candidates.”
Students might be surprised to learn that teachers are often looking for character traits, not just a 4.0 GPA.
“They’re looking for students that don’t necessarily have the highest grades or achieve academically the best, but they look for things in people’s character, such as leadership qualities, service, a good attitude in class, kids that are helpful,” said Balbuena.
McComb confirmed that teachers are looking for helpful, enthusiastic students when they’re nominating the Students of the Semester.
“Citizenship, academics, service. It’s not just about, ‘Oh, so here’s a 4.0 student.’ Indeed, there are students that make Student of the Semester without a super high GPA,” said McComb. “But certainly the GPA, or this notion of making a best effort in classes plays an important part in that…. You can count on them on doing the right thing, and helping their peers become better people.”
Tri Phan, the male freshman nominee, couldn’t believe that he was awarded the Student of the Semester, but he was still very thrilled that he got the award and enjoyed the whole moment.
“At first I was confused, I wasn’t sure what was happening,” said Phan. “My first thought was ‘I [am] curious on how I [was] picked.’ I didn’t really feel like I was one of the people who had really deserved or done anything big to get the award.”