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    Jesuit Clubs Have Returned


    Kavish S

    The Jesuit online club fair website in which every student has the opportunity to come and join the diverse variety of clubs.

    With the COVID-19 virus causing Jesuit High School to switch to online learning, many students questioned if having clubs this year would be feasible. 

    Two weeks ago, Jesuit hosted its first ever online club fair due to COVID-19 complications. Jesuit created a website with different hyperlinks to all of Jesuit’s intriguing clubs. 

    “The club fair was a huge success and with the increased number of students who came to the fair this year, we could potentially think about doing the online fair again next year,” Mock Trial leader David Exley said. 

    As many Jesuit clubs have started their year online, many students are still adjusting to the online atmosphere. Some students may enjoy clubs because they feel it’s a safe space to connect with others, but being online, there is still a sense of uncertainty. Another issue facing students is the amount of set time for club meetings. 

    “We only have two activity periods, and there are many kids who are in multiple clubs and because there are only two windows of club time, it’s difficult for kids to be actively involved,” Model United Nations leader Mark Flamoe said.

    Even with the set times for clubs, many students have trouble staying engaged over Zoom.When clubs meet in person, students may feel more compelled to participate because they are in the midst of the activities, but the online format decreases the pressure of participating.“The biggest difficulty is getting students to actively engage,” Chess Club leader Zane Godil said. 

    On Zoom, there is a tendency for students to turn their camera and mic off and mentally check out, so having interactions with club members is difficult. The larger impact of online clubs on students is the uncertainty regarding club competitions. Many of the clubs that compete in debates, mock trials, and tournaments are now up in the air due to safety concerns. Luckily, many club competitions don’t start until April, so there is time for potential changes.

     With the Model United Nations conference still in the air, “ the main impediment the club competition would have is for all kids to have good online access so they can fully participate in the conference,” Flamoe said. 

    Despite the difficulties of online club meetings, there have also been numerous benefits of meeting online. Dr. Exley proposed that an online club format may allow students to participate in a less stressful environment. “There many kids who may feel more comfortable coming to a club through zoom than to walk through the halls of lower Arrupe and talk to upperclassmen,” Exley said. 

    “There are some kids with specific personalities where there’s a certain element of safety and anonymity with joining a club when they have the ability at any point in time to turn their camera off or leave,” Flamoe said. 

    Students now have the ability to be as interactive as they want and students with different learning preferences can learn together. The new club format has benefitted many students by allowing them to engage in a safe space where they can be creative and comfortable. 

    “One positive aspect is that it’s very easy to disseminate information by screen sharing so the entire group can see,” Godil said. 

    Fortunately for all clubs, Zoom allows for teachers to project assignments and information on the call for all students to see easily. Club leaders also have the ability to be more flexible when setting club appointments. Even though clubs need to have moderators present, the after-school sports practices adjustments have made it easier for clubs to find set times to meet.

    Although clubs are meeting in person, the new method of meeting online may benefit students in the long run. Students will be expected to work just as hard as they would in in-person club meetings, and to communicate positively with others. Although the new club system may not appease everyone, it allows for all students to have a safe and equal opportunity to learn and grow. If all students and faculty remain open to striving for greatness, the 20-21 Jesuit High School club year can be one of the best.

    About the Writer
    Photo of Kavish Siddhartha
    Kavish Siddhartha, Staff Writer

    Kavish Siddhartha is a staff writer for the Jesuit Chronicle. Kavish is a junior at Jesuit High School and has been interested in journalism since a young...

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