Senior class sets the tone for entire school


The BruCrew, RBHS’s student section, cheers on the Bruin football team in a home game against DeSmet on Aug. 26. Photo by Yousuf El-Jayyousi

Grace Dorsey

The BruCrew, RBHS’s student section, cheers on the Bruin football team in a home game against DeSmet on Aug. 26. Photo by Yousuf El-Jayyousi
Senior year, according to many Hollywood narratives, is the culmination of one’s time spent at high school. It’s the time when a student finally makes a name for her or himself; it’s the time when the climb to the top of the totem pole is finally finished and leadership opportunities open up.
As each senior class graduates a new group of students step up to the task of leading the school. Already senior Maggie Victor senses the responsibility of leading the school in her final year.
“I feel like you’re supposed to be a role model. Everyone looks to what you’re doing, how you’re acting, what you’re saying and who you’re hanging out with,” Victor said. “I feel like more of a leader in this school. I feel that what I do makes more of an impact.”
Though the transition can be tough, Director of Counseling Betsy Jones believes the experience that seniors have gained throughout their time at high school is what prepares them to set the example for the rest of the student body. Jones also acknowledges the emphasis put on seniors to do their best.
“Seniors are in their last year, so they are fully enculturated, they fully understand what it means to be a student at RBHS,” Jones said. “As they step into that role as a senior they are someone that underclassmen look up to as their role models.”
Still, if someone is a senior that doesn’t necessarily mean they automatically rule the school, at least that’s what freshman Rebekah Selkoe thinks. In fact, Selkoe hasn’t talked to many seniors because she feels that they often stick to their own groups and fail to reach out.
“Unless [a senior is] trying to be intimidating, I don’t see them as any different than other people my age. I don’t think the seniors affect the entire school, it’s more about how everybody acts,” Selkoe said. “If the seniors act well and everyone else acts terribly then the school is going to be seen as terrible. They’re only a fourth of the population.”
In contrast, Victor can remember past years when the seniors influenced both her outlook going into high school and her overall experience during the school year.
“My freshmen year, the seniors were awesome. They were really helpful in getting us to feel involved and excited about being at RBHS,” Victor said. “The cheer seniors my sophomore year were also great. They made my sophomore year better because they were involved in my life and my experiences.”
Having an energetic senior class is one of the things that senior Nick Washington believes benefitted his freshman year because they set an example through being active members of the school.
“An energetic senior class is the best because there have been years, especially my freshmen year, where it was great because all the seniors were into it and the more senior participation you have, the better it is for everybody,” Washington said. “Last year’s seniors were fine but they were kind of boring, and I didn’t get along with them because they seemed disinterested.”
Senior John Swift agrees with Washington’s assessment of the seniors last year, and asserts that they just weren’t committed to their role as leaders.
“I honestly think they were lacking a bit. Talking about school spirit, we didn’t have Golden Cow at all last year, which is one of the things we usually have each year,” Swift said. “Upperclassmen, particularly seniors, are the ones who typically perform.”  
Now Swift is making it his goal to play the role of the ideal senior. Along with revitalizing BruCrew and being a senior mentor, Swift also wants to support more of what RBHS has to offer.
“I’m willing to be an example by getting involved in as many activities as I can, more than just sports,” Swift said. “I’m going to go to Capers for the first time. Hopefully we’ll have Golden Cow again this year so I’ll also go to that.”