Link Crew switches things up

Distance learning makes for changes in connecting freshmen to upperclassmen

During+Freshman+Orientation+2019%2C+freshman+Isaac+Lafohn+and+junior+Anthony+Salazar+tried+to+pop+balloons+back-to-back.+It+wasn%27t+as+easy+as+it+looked.

Hillary Currier

During Freshman Orientation 2019, freshman Isaac Lafohn and junior Anthony Salazar tried to pop balloons back-to-back. It wasn’t as easy as it looked.

By Aubrey Jordan, Yearbook Editor, Staff Writer

     Link Crew Leaders help freshmen stay connected during their first year of high school. 

     In the past Link Crew has been responsible for leading freshmen through their first day of school by providing activities and resources in hopes of making their transition from middle school to high school easier. 

     “I think that Link Crew helps connect freshmen to the school because we plan different events specifically to help them adjust better, and I feel like without that freshman year would be a lot harder,” senior link leader Maddie Hagood said.

     But, this year, the leaders are switching things up. 

     Since the school can’t meet in person, they have been coming up with a plan to move their activities and advice online. Originally, their plan was to have a forum style meeting on Zoom where the leaders would answer any questions the freshmen might have. 

     “By hosting a Zoom webinar type event only the panelists see the questions and can therefore choose which they want to answer without all the participants seeing them. Additionally, the viewers don’t see the other viewers, just the panelists,” Link Crew advisor Cynthia Pellicci said. 

     With this type of event, the leaders would get to control the environment to make sure each question was appropriate, and not disruptive. 

     However, because Zoom is blocked on Chromebooks, and Google Meets doesn’t have the panelist feature, Link Crew had to change their approach. 

     “We will be reaching out to freshmen through pre-recorded videos this year since we can’t be together, and I think it’s a great idea,” senior link leader Gillian Coplin said. 

     These videos will allow each freshman to know the link leaders and better understand what it is like to be a Tigard High School student. Each video will be 2 to 4 minutes long and contain possible answers to who their favorite teacher is, what they like most about Tigard, or any advice they have. 

     Along with the videos, Link Crew hopes to have pre-recorded events. 

     “I think students can still participate in an activity and get to know our link leaders even through an asynchronous event. Hey, if Bob Ross could do it, so can we!” Pellicci said referring to the painter of television fame, who encouraged viewers to paint along to his pre-recorded show.

     Even if the leaders and freshmen can’t meet in person, they hope the videos can give them the opportunity to feel more connected and a part of high school. 

     “Link Crew was so beneficial for me. My leaders were always there when I felt overwhelmed or needed to talk and that really helped me, when I was still adjusting,” Hagood said. 

     While the leaders had to change their approach to make sure the freshmen still feel connected, they will be sending out videos in the near future. 

     Freshmen should be on the lookout for upcoming Link Crew news.