The Warrior Way program sends AHS students to Andover elementary and middle schools several times a year to inspire those students to embody everything an Andover High student should be.

Mrs. Martini, who oversees the program, spoke about what she thinks makes it beneficial to AHS students and the students they visit at other schools. She said, “Warrior Way is multifaceted its purpose is to raise awareness of the importance of character, effort, sportsmanship, and teamwork. These are skills that will help anyone academically, on a team, a club, or in the job market.”

Martini also described who from AHS is eligible and what Warrior Way seeks in its members. She said, “We select kids at AHS who are the best role models, primarily student athletes. To get the right kids we have coaches nominate the best kids from their teams. We want kids who value academics and do the right thing all the time even when their coach isn’t present.”

Although the program is comprised of mostly athletes, Martini made it clear that students involved in other activities are welcome by saying, “Any kid who wants to join, and is involved in some extracurricular activity, it could be chorus or a different club, as long as the student has the right character.”

Warrior Way provides numerous benefits to students at other Andover schools who get to interact with AHS students. Martini also pointed out that “These kids want to be like AHS students. The athletes in warrior way take responsibility for projecting the character of the athletic program. By doing this we give them a picture of students who stand for these good things.” She added, “Our goal is to reinforce good character and show that you don’t have to be an athlete to care, show respect, have good attendance and be a good classmate.”

Warrior Way is also beneficial to the AHS students who participate as well. Martini said, “They will appreciate their role in the community more and recognize that intangible things like behavior and attitude are just as important as more tangible actions.”

Lastly, Martini had a message for the teachers about the importance of Warrior Way. She said, “This program requires students to get out of classes, and I appreciate teachers who are supportive. The values we instill and reinforce in Warrior Way will help students academically and in every other area of their life.”

More insight into the program was given by Alyssa Casey, Andover High senior on the girls’ basketball team. She started Warrior Way her freshman year and has been doing it ever since. Casey said, “I knew people on the basketball team who were involved with Warrior way and when I met Mrs. Martini she asked me to join.”

Having been in Warrior Way for almost all of high school, Casey has a good sense of what the goals of the program are. According to Casey, “It’s all about inspiring kids to be leaders and good sports now and when they come in to high school.”

Goals are key, but how a group carries out these goals and the effect they have can be just as important. Casey said, “It’s nice to see bonds forming between the high schoolers and younger kids and you can see their excitement to spend time with people they admire.”

There are many things Casey and other participants like about Warrior Way, but when choosing her favorite part about it all, Casey chose something that speaks to the main purpose of Warrior way. She said, “I love going into classes and seeing the kid’s faces brighten up because they know Warrior Way is today. It feels good to know that we’re contributing to making them happy.”

By Nick Gilpin