If you’ve never seen the wonders that Camelback High School has to offer, you would think it’s a regular public high school. But from an insider’s point of view, I know that we offer so many amazing opportunities and lead ways for students to experience. At the end of my sophomore year of high school, I was introduced to a program called Link Crew that I ended up falling in love with. It was a program that I, unfortunately, wasn’t able to experience my freshmen year due to the pandemic.
Link Crew is a student-led and motivated program to make our incoming freshmen feel as comfortable as possible with the huge transition from middle school to high school. Juniors and seniors form a bond with our incoming freshmen to make them feel like they are never alone in this journey of high school. We made it our job as upperclassman to run their orientation, welcoming events, as well as other activities that go towards community service.
As the members of Link Crew, we went through two days of training to learn how to welcome our fellow students as warmly as possible. We were assigned to a group of scholars to personally welcome and get to know. We planned a welcoming assembly followed by various fun, interactive activities to build friendships and bonds with them.
Our goal for mentoring freshmen is to make sure they always have a familiar face to find whenever they’re feeling stuck or need a friend. We’ve even developed a shirt design that is bright green, purposely meant to be easily spotted if we are needed. It was my honor to see my freshmen come up to me in the following months, whether it was a simple “hi” or a meaningful conversation. But the fun didn’t stop there! We’ve also ran tie-dye events to give them customized Camelback swag, a movie night to relax and have fun, and even tutoring and pizza sessions for them to receive the help they need. Link Crew has truly gone over and beyond for our freshmen!
Link Crew also offers multiple opportunities for service hours. The program provides its members with the chance to volunteer at nonprofit organizations, such as St. Mary’s Food Bank, or even just trash clean up events at Camelback to keep it beautiful and lively. We also show our school spirit by attending sports events and sell items such as clear back packs to fundraise for our program. Giving our service to the community is very important to Camelback High School, and Link Crew is paving the way for students of many generations to show gratitude and appreciation to our school.
Although it may seem like a hassle to manage freshmen or volunteer often, we as members are being supported by staff and facilities who love the program and the students just as much as we do. Link Crew has made an impact on thousands of students across America, and I sincerely love providing my time to participate in such a giving program. The program deserves recognition as well as celebration for all of the students that they support each and every day. We will continue to devote our time to making such a positive community here at Camelback High School.