New student leadership announced

As the end of the school year approaches, leadership opportunities have once again opened up to Upper School students seeking to proactively contribute to the community. Three main organizations, the Honor Council, Discipline Council, and Service Corps, play major roles in helping students facilitate such positive change.

Honor Council: Danny Adkins, Roman Bacchetta, Kyla Barnwell, Faizan Boghani, Gabby Bunnell, Alex Clark, Owen Downs, Jaquelin Hager, Myles Hudson, Susanna Lauten, Christine Liu, Andres Malave, Caroline McCutchen, Jordan Robinson

Students on the Honor Council are members of the community whose self-set moral standards align with Westminster’s honor code.

“We look for applicants who are willing to work together,” said Honor Council advisor Kay Solomon. “To be able to empathize with students and to counsel them are also very important.”

Of the 14 elected students, two are nominated by their fellow Honor Council members to be co-coordinators that schedule interviews and hearings. Most notably, the primary responsibility of the Honor Council is to assess the significance of an honor violation and subsequently to decide what the consequences should be. Whether a warning is given or a more serious penalty, the students do not take the job lightly.

“We’ve had a fair amount of cheating here,” said Solomon, “which has only increased over the years, and it’s no secret.”

In addition, members not only handle cases that come up throughout the year but also educate the student body on the issue of honor, even receiving training from the 2015-2016 council to better understand their purpose and mission.

“Hopefully we can minimize the number of cases we get each year,” says 2016-2017 Honor Council member Roman Bacchetta, “by making sure students uphold the honor code and know what constitutes a violation.”

Discipline Council: Mary Bryce Brannen, Jack Cahillane, Landis Collins, Cyrus Faruque, Riley Feinour, Bill Huang, Florida Huff, Watson Jackson, Brianna Karan, Maya Longacre, Will Miller, Josh Pinckney, Joe Protiva, Mary Tucker

Similar in structure to the Honor Council, the Discipline Council is a group of seven boys and seven girls who handle situations in which a student behaves in a way that violates the school’s conduct guidelines.

“The applicant pool has been overwhelmingly impressive lately,” said Discipline Council advisor John Monahan. “We had 53 applicants for those 14 spots, so it’s an incredibly difficult decision-making process.”

The application process includes essays that assess an applicant’s moral judgment in an ethically difficult scenario. Furthermore, part of the duty of a Discipline Council member is to provide good advice to students and to help reintegrate them into the community after a violation.

“We are trying to move to where Discipline and Honor Council students proactively collaborate with their peers,” says Monahan, “to deepen and broaden our values and discipline.”

Service Corps: Jimmy Balloun, Michelle Bibiano, Sam Blau, Christopher Block, Lauren Brown, Zoe Carson, Kayla Chambers, Gehna Chaubal, Claire Corbin, Christina Dalton, Caroline Flynn, Edward Holliday, Christina Huang, Laurel Kazazian, Grace Kelekci, Niki Manocha, Caitlyn Margol, Julian Mason, Jack Minson, Ria Parikh, Sarah Elizabeth Payne, Mikaela Sanders, Margaret Silliman, Josh van der Eerden, Cartie Werthman, Lexi Young, Albert Zhang, Vicky Zhang

Former Westminster president Bill Clarkson established the Service Council in 1991 to instill a tradition of community service in the school. The Service Learning Leadership Council was later created by the Glenn Institute, which integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, along with judging applications for grants given to the community by the school. With 18 returning members and 11 students new to the council, next year will be the first to see these two organizations merge into what is known as the Service Corps.

“The Service Corps will design, fund, promote and implement curricular and extracurricular service activities initiated by council members, fellow students, and faculty,” said Upper School community service coordinator Stan Moor. “Things are changing, especially with the Glenn Institute, and so the school is moving toward the idea of service learning.”

It’s still unclear as to how the Service Corps will divide up responsibilities and duties, but some prefer to stick to the areas of service they’re more familiar with and had carried out in previous years.

“I look to be active in doing things like building for Habitat for Humanity or tutoring at AGAPE,” says Service Corps member Michelle Bibiano. “I just prefer to go out into the community to be more directly involved.”

As Moor will be retiring after a 24-year tenure, Glenn Institute program manager Callie Crabb will be leading this newly formed council as it looks to change the meaning of service at Westminster.