Who defined the year that was at Andover High School? The Newspaper Production class, whose work often sees print here on the Warrior Weekly, recently developed a short list of individuals and groups of people who had an impact on the school in 2014. (TIME Magazine often does the same on a larger scale, and recently chose the ebola health care workers as its collective Person of the Year.) Below is a brief introduction to each of the AHS choices. We at the Warrior Weekly welcome you to read about those around you and then vote via our online survey for whom you think is the Andover High School Person of the Year. Results will be tallied and announced after vacation.
As an accomplished athlete, senior Hannah Ameen has had an extremely impressive track career during her time at AHS — and reached new heaights as a senior. Ameen was selected as a captain of the winter and spring track team, and has more than fulfilled her duty by taking on the impressive task of recording, collecting, and organizing the results of a track fund-raiser with help from a few of her fellow captains. Ameen also set a school record for the 55-meter dash with a time of 7:54. Overall, Ameen has exhibited qualities of a capable leader and a truly talented athlete, making her a perfect candidate for the AHS Person of the Year.
A stunning gown and a beautiful crown now walk the halls of AHS. Senior Sophie Baird was recently crowned Miss Teen Massachusetts USA 2015. A varsity cheerleader for four years, Baird has committed herself to school spirit and worked to gain respect for her sport. Following intense preparation, Baird stayed true to herself and represented the school, her town, and herself with grace. The community has come together to congratulate Baird and cheer her on to her next competition.
A junior at AHS, Briggs is a member of the Andover High JV and varsity basketball teams. Last season at the highly anticipated Andover vs. Central Catholic basketball game, Briggs was put in at the end of the game, and as the clock ran down he scored a basket. This brought the entire sold out gym to its feet. The chant “Michael!” was shouted by both the AHS and Central fan sections. (Check out the video on Youtube.) Briggs received a nomination for the Person of the Year at AHS because of his ability to bring everyone together, and achieve his dream of playing basketball. He continuously brings the good out in everybody — no matter who you are or what high school you go too.
THE CAFETERIA STAFF
The cafeteria workers are always unappreciated for their contributions to the school. Additionally, the cafeteria workers are unrecognized for their enthusiasm. They are very positive and care about their jobs and the well-being of the student body. Every time a student goes into the cafeteria, he or she can expect to see the smiling faces of all the cafeteria workers. Every day they have to feed much of the 1,800 students, an immense task to tackle. The cafeteria workers strive to have positive relationships with the students and staff, making them a perfect candidate for this well-deserved recognition.
The Jungle, AHS’s student cheering section, has greatly improved school spirit and excitement about sporting events. The Jungle has been present at girls’ state volleyball games and has also been attending the boys’ and girls’ basketball games. It won the inaugural Commonwealth Classic Award for being the best fan section last year. Its members cheer positively for their teams and do not put down their opponents. Anybody can join the Jungle, making it beneficial for all. It truly reflects school spirit and embodies a great sense of community at AHS.
It’s rare for one to experience a life-changing moment while still in high school, but according to many of those that participated in Challenge Day, it is entirely possible. Many of those who participated in Challenge Day say the experience changed their outlook on life and how they regard their fellow classmates. This opportunity was created by Ms. Kirby, a social worker at AHS. Ms. Kirby is also head of the Be The Change club, an organization that encourages its members to identify problems in their community and fix them in a peaceful, respectful way. As a social worker at our school, Ms. Kirby also offers necessary support to many students. Overall, her valuable contributions to the school make her an optimal candidate for AHS person of the year.
Dr. Lord abruptly left Andover High School after being principal for only two and a half years. He was missing from the school for about two weeks before his departure. Lord was essentially fired from his last job in Rhode Island because the school did not meet graduation requirements, yet he was also runner up for Rhode Island’s Principal of the Year Award while there. What ended his time here? The superintendent has announced publicly that he decided to pursue another “career opportunity.” One thing’s certain: his resignation from AHS was a shock to students and teachers, and the rhythm of AHS was changed significantly by his leaving.
The Warrior Way is an essential part of the athletic community among public school students in Andover. Ms. Martini heads the leadership project, which enforces messages about character, teamwork, sportsmanship and effort. The Warrior Way allows students at Andover High School to serve as role models for younger students. Varsity coaches nominate athletes based on consistent and genuine demonstration of phenomenal teamwork, tremendous character and integrity, and academic excellence. The Warrior Way is an important part of Andover High School’s athletic community, and Ms. Martini’s contribution to the project has brought it to a high level.
ANNA AND CECE ROOT
The two sisters from AHS have started a home decor business, Twirls. Hand-painting signs retailing at $20 each, the girls direct all of their profits to the Lawrence Boys and Girls Club. Selling their signs at craft fairs and seeking new business through a newly created Facebook page, the two are pursuing an activity they love and connecting it with service. Anna, previously a competitive ballet dancer, was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and was forced to give up her dance career. In need of a new hobby, she began teaching a ballet class at the Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence. Unfortunately, the dancers were lacking the proper clothing: tights, leotards and other accessories. Anna wanted to do more for them. This fund-raiser allows the dancers to receive the right supplies and attend a competition in New York.