Dollars for scholars organizes new semi-formal dance

Story originally published in 2016 edition of Quiver yearbook.

Often, there is more work behind an event than meets the eye. The semi-formal Homecoming dance, donning the theme “Club Blue,”was held on Sept. 26 in the Rotunda. Dollars for Scholars was assigned the task of planning it.

“The location was definitely an issue because we wanted it here at the school, but we couldn’t use the gym. We tried to find a location that the students would enjoy and fit everyone that was coming,” Ms. Ashley Kline, Guidance, said.

However, choosing the location was only one task to check off the checklist.

“We haven’t had a [semi-formal Homecoming dance], so this was a first. It’s always difficult because we have to figure out where to have it, what type of attire to wear, [how] to make [the] cost affordable, decorations and [a] theme,” Asst. Principal Tim Powers said.

Despite the difficulties, the Homecoming dance went smoothly. The administration was a little worried about the outcome but were satisfied with the result.

“I was happy [with the dance]. The format was perfect. I wish more students would’ve purchased tickets and gone. [However], it was a great start. We had phenomenal support from the Dollars for Scholars students and the parents who run the organization,” Mr. Powers said.

The success of the dance benefited the students by providing over $6,000 of scholarship money for the class of 2016.

“Dollars for Scholars made a good amount of money from this dance, so that [will] be helpful to the class of 2016 for their scholarships,” Katrina Lozanoski (11) said.

The dance provided more than just scholarship money for the students. It also left them with reminiscent memories.

“I think [the dance] went great. I’ve only ever seen positive comments by everybody. There was actually a group of senior girls that came up to [Asst. Principal Marty] Freeman during the dance and said that it was the best dance that they’ve ever been to. We’re all very excited. It was a big team effort, but it was a success. We are looking forward to [the dance] next year,” Ms. Kline said.

“Being adopted doesn’t define me. Nothing really defines you. The only thing that defines you is yourself.”

Story originally published in 2016 edition of Quiver yearbook.

A constant cycle of packing and unpacking. For a majority of her life, Kristy Willis (10) had been living in foster care, constantly bouncing from home to home for years.

“There [were] homes where I only lived there for a day and a half,” Willis said.

A day and a half. 36 hours with a family and then time to move again.

“It’s hard on a young kid because they make friends and get attached to people, then they have to leave and it’s really hard on them. That goes for any age I guess. It’s just hard on the young kid because they are confused and scared [of] what is going on [and] that they are living with different people. When you constantly move into different places, they seclude themselves and don’t like opening up very much,” Willis said.

Relocating from home to home for so long left Willis with an unique independence.

“I’m not very dependent on people because I only had to live with myself for so long. When you stay in one place and move around, all you have is yourself because you can’t keep an attachment with [the] people you are with,” Willis said.

With this unique independence, Willis learned skills that otherwise she wouldn’t have gained.

“I realized who [my] friends [were] and who I [was] able to be attached to or who to watch out for because I went to so many different schools. I figured out who the people [were] that [I] should be close to. I learned how to care for [myself] independently. A lot of young kids learn it when they go through stuff like that, they kind of learned how to stay themselves and be independent and be able to do things by themselves and not rely on somebody.”

Now, Willis no longer has to constantly pack and unpack her belongings. She was formally adopted about two years ago.

“Honestly, [adoption] doesn’t make me any different. I still live with people that care for me. I’m a lot happier than I was. I have somewhere that I can stay living and not worry about where I’m going to live next,” Willis said.

Despite the impact living in foster homes has had on her life, she refuses to let that part of her life define her.

“Being adopted doesn’t define me. Nothing really defines you. The only thing that defines you is yourself. How you act and how you perceive things is what defines you,” Willis said.