Links Leadership Crew welcomes BMHS freshmen
Junior and senior students at Bradshaw Mountain High School Friday took members of the Class of 2014 under their wings to help make the transition from middle school to high school a little easier.
Ninety upperclassman volunteers spent two days in leadership training as part of the Links Leadership program.
BMHS teacher and Links coordinator Cheryl McCully said of Friday's orientation, "We want the freshmen to get out of their groups and mix with other students. It is all about learning that the decisions they make their freshman year will affect the outcome of their high school years."
Senior Paul Wiser volunteered to be a member of the Links crew because he remembers what it was like to be a freshman: scared.
"I think it is nice to help and to let the freshmen know there are people here to help them," Wiser noted.
The junior and seniors will serve as mentors to the newest Bradshaw Bears throughout their first year in high school.
On Friday, the freshmen met their teachers, toured the campus, got their class schedules and ate a barbecue lunch.
Freshman Jade Pitts is excited to attend BMHS. A former middle-school football player, he made the BMHS Bears freshman team.
While looking forward to playing for the Bears, on Friday Pitts was looking forward to learning where his classes are located. He is a little nervous about "keeping up academically."
For McCully and fellow Links coordinator teacher Annie O'Connor, Friday was about building a community and belonging.
For Links crew member junior Breanna Miller, it is all about change.
"I absolutely love change. The freshmen need to have fun their first year. I want to help them have a great year," Miller said.
Miller's advice to the Class of 2014 is to make good friends.
"It is important to have good friends because they will determine if you have a good year and whether you do well in school," Miller said.
Freshman Austin Quinn decided to start his school year Friday because "most of my friends are here. Also, I want to be on the Bears football team." (Quinn did make the team.)
On Friday, Quinn hoped to learn where his classes are and what he is going to be learning in those classes.
Finding their way around the BMHS campus seemed to be at the top of freshman worries - that and "looking dumb," according to Miller. She said freshmen are scared of upperclassmen. "I know I was when I was a freshman. I wish I had something like this," she said.
Sindi Perez is looking forward to meeting new people, and swimming. She is nervous about the amount of homework teachers assign students.
McCully and O'Connor invited all 510 new freshmen to attend Friday's orientation program. About 400 participated.
"We want to give the freshmen the freedom to get school spirit," McCully said.
Wiser said it is important for freshmen to know "it is all about priorities. You have to put school first."