The month of September was a time full of challenge and coming together as a community. One prime example is the emergence of the Senior Speech program. Jeanne Hillinck teaches seniors how to develop and deliver speeches under a common theme. The only rule of the speech is that it fits the mold of “This I believe” and from there, it is up to our creativity to put a personal twist on it while speaking about something we believe.
Claire Couvillon and I were given the opportunity to speak at Community Time as the third pair to go through the multi-week process. I was eager to get the ball rolling, but as September 25 came closer and closer, the nerves started to set in. The hours spent drafting ideas and practicing the delivery was a confidence booster, but there is something about speaking in front of 400 of your peers that draws a rush of nervous excitement that preparation can not cure.
The weeks of hard work resulted in a seven-minute window to share not only our ideas, but the skills and techniques we acquired along the way. Claire spoke about her transition from Huntsville High to Randolph, and how the sense of community helps solidify the truly great aspects of our school. I chose to speak about adversity and how it shapes us into stronger people. Our ideas were not only expressed in community time that day, but they were pervasive through September as well.
All of senior class advisories took part in a kickball tournament this month, with two days of competition. Despite some skepticism to start out, when it seemed like the tournament would yield only a fraction of the class, when the day finally came, the baseball and softball fields were full of emotion and competitive spirit that brought a new dynamic to the tournament.
Some advisories bought matching bandannas to show their spirit, and the fast-paced format of the three-inning games created a level intensity. Even though some members could not participate, they still brought cheers to encourage their team. From the moment the games began to the moment they ended, our teamwork helped to foster a sense of community that makes Randolph so special. Just as Claire stated in her speech “We are able to experience opportunities that are unique to this school and steeped in tradition.” Kickball is one of those traditions..
Community spirit was also evident in our first football game. I saw a plethora of smiles at the first Raider Rally, as Lower School kids connected with high school ambassadors, and the cheer and dance team kept the excitement going. When kickoff finally came, the sea of students brought a sense of energy that can only be found in the Friday night lights.
The first game was against Lauderdale County, and it was full of adversity for our team. With a smaller roster than last year, many of the players are playing both ways, and this is a tough test for a younger team. However, the grit displayed that night allowed the Raiders to hold the lead that they created in the first half. The adversity that was shown to the team that night was a huge morale boost, and it helped the team carry the momentum into the first 4-0 start in school history.
Like the kickball parallels to Claire's speech about community, the football game draws similarities to facing adversity and using your struggles to make yourself better as a result. This month was eventful and full of high spirits, and I cannot wait to see what October brings.
A note from the Communications Office: Members of the senior class are invited to submit photos of defining moments of the senior year to this Senior year snaps folder in Vidigami. We will look here for photos to accompany Blake's next post.