Have no Fear Freshmen, the Seniors are Here

A senior with her mentee hard at work.

A senior with her mentee hard at work.

During the past school years, many new students came into the building, looking lost, confused, scared, nervous, and feeling strange to the environment of this unique high school, Frank Sinatra School of the Arts High School (FSSA). Many of them had to struggle and get through adapting to a new school on their own. While it is easy for some to get used to a new environment, it takes others a little longer. This is why the student government, led by the class president, Romello Rodriguez and vice-president Sabrina Dionisi, started the Freshman-Senior Mentorship program, which was created to help and get to know the incoming freshman class of 2018.

The Freshman-Senior mentorship program is an opportunity for seniors who voluntarily joined, to meet the incoming freshmen class, within their studio, and basically guide them throughout the year. Mentors are supposed to introduce the freshmen to the school and its environment, explained class president Romello Rodriguez. It was an idea he and the vice president came up with when they saw how interacting with seniors in the past helped themselves to learn more about their studio and the school.

“Seniors, in their respective studios will mentor and guide freshmen in their own studios and teach them what it means to be in that major, and teach them the skills they need to succeed in that studio,” said Romello. The first meeting, which was on Monday September 12th, took place in the cafeteria and each senior was assigned one or more freshmen.

“In the beginning it was just like a meet and greet.  We just met up, we met our mentees and we exchanged information.  Phone numbers, facebook or any type of social media,” stated Caroline Beskur, 17, who is a senior instrumental major, and seemed very excited to be a part of the new program. “The point of this is that if they need any help for something they could come to us.”

Even though the seniors seemed very thrilled to be a part of it, some of the freshmen were still unsure about it.

“They [the freshmen] seemed really nervous.” says senior film major Kristen Nieto.  “It was hard to get them to talk,” she said with a shrug. Like many of the seniors who are part of the program, Kristen was glad to be able to share and use everything she knows of the school and her studio to help the freshmen, and she wished they had this program in her freshmen year.

Although this program was created to help out the new incoming class, many of the freshmen didn’t know about this program until the last minute. It was a surprise to many of them.

Freshman Dionisios Zervos, 14, or simply Dion, whom is an instrumental major, was one student who decided to participate after many of his friends told him to. Many other freshmen found out about the program during the three day freshmen orientation before school started.

Some of the freshmen felt very welcomed by their mentor and felt more comfortable with the school afterwards. Freshmen learned a lot from their seniors and others, like Dion, saw how many of them are passionate for their studio, which makes many of them more eager to participate in their respective studios.

Even though both freshmen and seniors found this very helpful and a good way to interact with each other, many of them believed it should be more than just one meeting.

“It’s a good way of guidance, but since we don’t see them [their mentee] as often, we have to know our limits,” explained freshmen drama major Dayna Comins. Many of them, including freshman drama major, Skylar Jeffries, believes there should be more interaction between them and the seniors.

“It was fun, but all you do from that point is just say ‘hi’ in the hallway, but it ends there,” said Skylar.

Even though, some of the freshmen had similar thoughts, the heads of the program were discussing future activities and how there could even be trips and future meetings. Overall all of the freshmen enjoyed the program and now finally feel at home at FSSA.

– by Martha Paguay ’15