Orientation and club fair start school year off strong

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Sara Kracke

A LINK leader answered a question from a student during the campus tour.

Carol Xu and Ritika Gupta

The day before the start of the school year, Amador Valley freshman and sophomore students attended a special orientation and rally on campus held by the LINK Crew. For many, this was their first time on campus.

Creating a community on campus

At the event, LINK leaders organized a name tag game, and finished off with a guided school tour. The orientation gave many students, especially freshmen, an opportunity to meet new people and socialize. 

“More than anything, it was refreshing! I really enjoyed seeing people again, and I can’t wait to talk to people more as the school year starts,” said Cathy Gao (‘25).

Juhi Malik (‘22), a LINK leader and coordinator, enjoyed welcoming the freshmen to Amador. Although she’s now a senior, she’s only been on campus for a year and a half.

“It was so awesome to see things getting more normal! [But] to be completely honest it feels a little weird guiding the freshmen and sophomores because I feel like I am still one of them,” said Malik.

Malik’s sentiments are shared by several other upperclassmen, but it’s the feeling of still being a freshman in high school that allows them to empathize with the underclassmen, understand their new experiences, and give them the help they need. 

“It is very important to start creating a community on campus on day one,” said LINK leader Alena Gagnon (‘23).

Several freshmen certainly felt the support from this large community, having gained valuable tips and advice from their LINK leaders during orientation. 

“I [felt] somewhat nervous going to a new school with new classes and new teachers, [so] the freshmen orientation helped me so much to find all my classes and get me used to the school,” said Claire Lee (‘25)

Following the orientation, students went to the club fair hosted by Amador’s leadership team. There were a variety of clubs present, ranging from Science Olympiad to AV Mentors to sports clubs. 

Sophomores appreciated being able to see the different clubs Amador has to offer before the school year officially starts. 

“As sophomores, we didn’t really have the chance to be introduced to all the clubs properly last year, [so] it was nice to tour around all the clubs and hear from their officers what each club does specifically,” said Kathryn Go (‘24)

Club officers were as similarly enthusiastic about the fair as the freshmen and sophomores, looking forward to scouting new members and seeing their own friends again. 

“I think it’s really exciting because [the freshmen] actually get to witness how campus is and how everything functions around actually in-person. [The club fair] is a really interesting opportunity for freshmen to seek out what they want to do, and join some clubs in their first year to get more involved on campus,” said Aditi Karthik (‘23).

Clubs present at the fair used flashy posters and tasty incentives at their booths to catch the attention of underclassmen and boost their membership. 

For Kathryn Go, the YoungLife club took the cake for the best sales tactics: handing out frozen popsicles for students to enjoy while perusing the booths. “Those popsicles were so good!” said Go.