At Eagle Rock HS, each grade has a club in charge of their collective student body to make decisions and essentially assemble and fundraise for things like senior prom and graduation for their respective classes. Recently, my friend Lilah Hayes took on the effort to organize FCO (freshman class officers), in an attempt to begin what others hadn’t.
This was a very drawn out process to actually complete, but the outcome is a club that will cultivate our future endeavors and assist the freshman class in whatever they want to do. I wanted to highlight the process of creating this club for any future classes who want to do the same. Additionally, for any freshman interested in joining or learning more about it, I decided to interview the board and members of the club to talk about what FCO really is.
The process of creating the club
To start any club, especially one of this nature, is a process that is both long and frustrating. First off, Lilah needed to find a group of students willing to run the club with her. Though she said it would be doable to manage things by herself, having a board that would oversee and help organize things together was the best approach.
After that was arranged, the next step was to recruit two teachers who would be the designated supervisors of the club. “So many teachers said no immediately,” Lilah remembers. “Some of them just laughed.” Eventually, she managed to get two people, Mr. Ozaki and Ms. Munos, to agree to being the supervisors. “They're the best,” she says. “Basically what enabled us to start the club.”
One of the biggest parts of starting this up, Lilah adds, was the paperwork. “There was SO much of it. And a lot of talking to Mr. Cohen.” The paperwork was frustrating and hard to do, she adds, but she knows it was worth it in the end. Finally, her and the chosen board had to create a budget and a constitution for it to pertain to. “The constitution basically says this is what we're going to do and how we’re going to do it and if you don’t follow it you're out.”
After all of this, all there was left to do was recruit interested freshmen into the club, which Lilah says was easier than she thought. Additionally, she warns any freshmen who want to start this club in the future against getting it running later in the year. “We missed out on a lot of fundraising opportunities like football games and Homecoming,” she says. “But if you get it together as early as possible, you should be perfectly fine.”
Meet the board
To run a club like FCO, it’s important to have a group of people whose job it is to keep it organized. Along with the positions of co-president, there is also a vice president, a secretary, a treasurer, and commissioners. Commissioners are essentially the leaders of each division of the club. There are three divisions: spirit, fundraising, and publicity. The two commissioners for each group oversee and organize their respective members to make sure that everything runs smoothly and without complications. The main board, co-presidents Lilah Hayes and Augusta Casucci, vice president Isabella Martinez, treasurer June Jacoby, and secretary Sophie Seifert have the job of working on everything else, including coordinating with the sponsors, planning meetings, and general maintenance.
Co-presidents Lilah and Augusta are the main students behind the operation, and are both deeply involved in the success of the club. “I just felt like there was no sense of togetherness in the freshman grade, and me and Lilah wanted to fix that,” says Augusta. Their jobs as presidents are to look over every single aspect of the group- arrange meetings, talk to the supervisors, help plan events, ect.
Additionally, they both have a big interest in using this club to bring the 9th grade together. “I just feel like everyone is in their separate groups, really,” says Augusta. “And FCO can be used to mix those groups,” adds Lilah. In the end, they hope to achieve this vision of community and friendship through the club.
Vice president Isabella sees herself as the connecting tool between members, saying, “I just want to get everyone really excited about this, excited about being here.” Her job as vice president is to essentially support Augusta and Lilah through whatever decisions they make. She also reaches for the end goal of bringing everyone in the club together, making FCO feel more like a group of friends than anything.
Secretary and treasurer Sophie and June play the supporting roles on the board, and have big plans for the future. “I joined FCO because the idea of being able to collaborate with my classmates to do things that help the whole grade sounded really appealing,” says Sophie.
In addition, she says that she loves her job, keeping things organized, taking notes, and making sure everyone has the information they need. She also enjoys working with the rest of the board, including treasurer June, who sees FCO as a vision in progress. “Imagine…planning for the future, for your future, with your friends, to create something admirable,” she says. “I love this job.” As treasurer, along with the management and distribution of money, she feels she and the rest of the board have big responsibilities as leaders. “We gotta have a good prom,” adds Sophie. “We’ll mess this up for everyone else if we don’t get it right.”
In the future
FCO, even as it’s just started up, is already planning for the future. As a commissioner for fundraising myself, I know the work that the members of this club do to help each other and the rest of the 9th grade class. We’ve just started high school, but having a club like this can help make the rocky start just a little smoother.
Look for FCO at all school events, and come support!