Highland Park clubs

By Natalie Braga, Alivia Arredondo, and Piper Gallivan

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Highland Park Senior High offers a variety of super great clubs for ALL to join! We have interviewed the leaders of every club to find out what each club has to offer. Highland students have a wide range of interests, but there is a club out there for everyone. Here is what we found out about all the different clubs!

Anime Club
First on the list is Anime Club, lead by Ms. Lynn. Anime Club meets once a week in Room 159, and is open to everyone who has an interest in anime and wants to learn more about it (no drawing skills required). You will get to watch and draw anime, as well as learn (and taste test) things from different food celebrations. This club is an opportunity to get you in touch with another culture, and interact and bond with people with similar interests. Ms. Lynn, who has been at Highland for 15 years, highly encourages you to stop by!

Book Club
Do you miss the pressure free reading experience? Are you tired of teachers telling what to read and how to read? Then come join Book Club! They are a super fun, low key club, and they meet about once every 6 weeks to discuss a book and eat snacks. Ms. Rahman is the leader of the club and she invites everyone to come to the library to discuss books and have a good time. Most of the books read in Book Club are meant to really relate to teens and make for easy connections and understandings to the characters. Book Club also offers many exiting visits to see authors, and a chance to get your very own free book signed. Another great thing about Book Club is they are a part of Read Brave. Read Brave is a program where students and parents read the same book, so parents understand the the realities and challenges teenagers face. For more information on Read Brave go to: http://www.sppl.org/readbrave

Book Club is a really great place for students to unwind and get lost in their book without the added stress of taking notes, analyzing, reading to a certain point, etc. so come join Book Club!

Conspiracy Theory Club
Was the moon landing fake? Is Tupac still alive? What really happened to Princess Diana? If these questions intrigue you, you should check out the Conspiracy Theory Club! They meet every other Thursday in Ms. Shomion’s Room to explore alternative ideas and theories. Each meeting also includes great snacks, including the iconic mystery juice. It is a great way to meet others in a fun and respectful environment, while also expanding your knowledge on the world (and what may be beyond it). Meetings are low commitment and guaranteed to always be fun!

Debate
Ms. Becker invites anyone and everyone to join debate, held in her classroom, Room 2214. The debate team meets Mondays and Wednesdays from 4-5:30 to learn about each year’s new debate topic. This year’s topic is education, which will be the focus of many discussions in the club. With a partner, you are able to compete against other schools at tournaments held about every other week on Fridays and Saturdays. Debaters tend to do better in history and English, and are often offered college scholarships for their hard work. It is an opportunity to travel to other schools and universities, develop a deep understanding of the yearly topic, and make new friends.

FFA
Calling all Future Farmers of America, or just anyone interested in agriculture, Ms. Wedger would love to have you in FFA! Meetings start at the end of September, are monthly, and last a half hour to 45 minutes. This club offers many different career development events, and the opportunity for many different field trips to explore those careers. These events are connected to different contests you can do, in which you compete regionally against Central Minnesota, and possibly State after that! FFA is a great opportunity to get involved at Highland, not to mention the fact that it looks good on a college resume. You can choose to be as involved as you want, while building up your leadership skills, and connecting with people you might not usually connect with. Ms. Wedger encourages you to ask her about any questions you may have!

Film
Seniors, Kat Vento and Zoe Challenger are the co-presidents of Film Club, with Ms. Becker supervising. It is is held in her room (2214) every Monday. The Film Club works on making their own films, while also having the added benefit of popcorn each meeting. It is a great opportunity for students to express themselves through moving images, and also allows members to meet artistic individuals like themselves. There is no competing and it is purely for fun, while also being low commitment. The film club is open to everyone, is very open minded to all ideas that come in, and would love to have anyone interested to join!

Gender Equality Club
Anyone interested in making Highland Park an even more safe and inclusive place for all should check out the Gender Equality Club! Ms. Rise hosts the meetings once a week in her room: 2201. In the meetings there is not only usually food, but also a chance to be apart of discussions about how to make everyone feel included at school, and how to raise awareness about current events involving gender issues in society. Ms. Rise encourages you to join because gender equity is something that affects everyone and is also a pressing and interesting topic in the current times. The GEC also does fun leadership activities and crafts, such as bracelets for special needs kids. Stop by Ms. Rise’s room with questions!

Global Affairs Club
Global Affairs Club (formerly known as Model UN), is a great club to join for anyone who wants to learn about the real UN, discuss foreign policy and current events, and new this year participate a program called Great Discussions. It helps you grasp concepts, and enter the world of Global Citizenship. There are many opportunities for travel and attending conferences with other schools. It looks great on resumes, and colleges love it. There is a lot of flexibility in joining this club; you can meet once a month or join once a week. What people don’t always realize is that anyone can join, regardless of prior knowledge, and underclassmen are especially welcome!! Co-Presidents Archer Gallivan and Sarah Lind-MacMillan invite anyone to join in Ms.Rise’s (2201) room on Thursdays after school!!

Indian Culture Club
A brand new club this year that wants you to be a part of it is the Indian Culture Club! They meet twice a month in Mr. Berndt’s room (2306) and offer delicious Indian snacks! In this club you will be able to learn about and appreciate the Indian culture more, while also meeting new people who are also interested in the culture. They also plan on doing fun activities such as a tailgating booth at homecoming. ICC hopes to help you gain appreciation for a culture that is represented both at Highland and in St. Paul, and would love you come and check it out!

Math Team
Interested in improving your math skills and showing off your knowledge to others? Check out the Math Team, with meetings held twice a week, on Mondays and Wednesdays, from 2:15 to 3:30, in Mr O’Connell’s room! Though the club only runs from October to March, it is a great opportunity to make friends, learn math you won’t in class, and gain more confidence in your skills! The math team competes in the St. Paul League and prepares for the meets during the meetings, as well as other fun activities. This is a calm and flexible club that is happy to have anyone join.

Mountain Biking
Are you ready to pump iron biking style?! Join Mountain Biking Club!
Mountain Biking Club is a super fun interactive sport for anyone (no riding experience necessary). They meet 2-3 times a week down in Hidden Falls and they compete against other schools in races. So if you’re looking for a low commitment, fun sport, where you get to explore new biking trails, make new friends, get in shape, and learn new skills, Mountain Biking Club is the place for you! For more information go to: http://wiki.hpmtb.org/Highland+Park+Composite+Mountain+Biking

Science Club
Does exploring deeper into fun science topics sound interesting to you? Join Henry Vasquez and the rest of the Science Club once a month every third Wednesday (excluding September, which will be on the 27th) in Ms. Connelly’s room! Each meeting will have a theme and experiment to go with it, as well as having snacks provided. While participation is not necessary, members are highly encouraged to get involved with Science Fair, where you could compete at regional, state, and even national levels! Science Fair has many scholarship opportunities and members of the Science Club get free admission to register. Science Club also goes on science related field trips such as to the Science Museum and a tour of the U of M’s biomedical department. This club is low commitment, looks great on resumes, and welcomes you to join!

Student Council
Want to make a difference in this school and use your leadership skills? If so, Student Council is the perfect place for you! If you make your way up to executive board, you will meet once a week, or if you are on full house, it is the first Monday of each month, all in room 3211. They work to provide a fun experience for the whole school, by planning dances, tailgating, homecoming week, the senior send off, and many service opportunities, among many other things. Anyone should join who wants good experience planning, working with others, dealing with other’s opinions, and getting involved in school. On top of all of that, it looks great on a resume! Mrs. Rohweller-Kocur, Mrs. Hedwall and the StuCo executive board would love to invite anyone to try out!

ULA
Union Latina invites everyone to join them in their festivities throughout the year! They learn about Latin culture, learn to dance, and plan events for the student body. Some events they put on are tailgating, Dia de los Muertos, culture day, and Cinco de Mayo. It is a great way to learn about culture, learn to dance, as well as build community and build culture. Anyone can join, regardless of race or if you speak Spanish!

Youth in Government
Youth in Government is an amazing opportunity for anyone who wants to get to meet new people, learn how a government works (specifically legislative), and have their voice be heard. Many of the meeting are to prepare for a conference held in February. YIG clubs from all over the state meet in downtown Minneapolis, or the State Capital for upperclassmen, to share their ideas and work with each other. It is a great way to gain knowledge, and work with new people, plus they have great snacks. They meet at 2:20 on Thursdays in room 2201.

Highland Park Senior high offers a variety of clubs for a variety of people. We hope this article helped you find a club you’re interested in! Although we did not get the chance to interview some of the clubs such as Archery, ACC, Black Student Union, Chinese, Chess, Genius Squad, Prism, Speech, Spanish Debate, and Youth Alive we highly encourage trying them out and learning more about them by going to: https://www.spps.org/site/Default.aspx?PageType=1&SiteID=38&ChannelID=182&DirectoryType=6 for more information on all the clubs.