Senior Spotlight: Lexi Shafer and Max Lukes

Alexa Paterno, Staff Writer

Interview with Lexi Shafer

Why did you want to run for president?

“I wanted to run for President because I wanted to boost spirit at Bernards! We are working on multiple events which should be really fun for everyone. I also had a really great experience working on my class council.”

Why did you want to be involved in the student council?

“I wanted to be involved in student council because I wanted to help plan prom, at first. Then I realized that it is something I really like and I am excited to do more as President.”

Are you involved in other clubs? If so, what is your role?

“I am involved in a bunch of other clubs! I am the Vice President of Girl Up and the Editor of Key Club, but I am also involved in Peer Leaders, National Honor Society, Track, and Math League.”

How long have you been involved in clubs and student councils?

“Most of these clubs, including student council, I have been involved in since freshman year. I was the corresponding secretary of my class and I absolutely loved it, so I kept that position through my junior year.”

Are there any important events coming up that you have planned?

“Yes! On October 14, we will be having the pep rally with students vs. teachers. We will also be having tailgating lawn games before the pink out. The dodgeball competition will also be taking place in November. I am also really excited that we are working on a winter semi formal!”

Why do you think it’s important to be an active member of student councils/ clubs?

“In my experience, joining clubs has presented me with numerous opportunities I wouldn’t have had otherwise and allowed me to get closer to many people.”

What do you see yourself doing as a future career?

“I am looking to major in biomedical engineering. I hope to get my masters in tissue engineering and I would really like to do research involving regenerative medicine.”

What is your advice to underclassmen considering joining clubs?

“Do it! Go to a couple meetings and try anything you have even a slight interest in, it could become something you really love.”

What is your favorite part about being president?

“My favorite part is getting to have a say in the events being held. I am so excited for everything we have planned for this year.”

What have you done for the community in the past couple of months?

“Girl Up recently held a 5k with the town and is currently working on a voter registration drive with HMC. I have also been participating in training for Key Club office, in addition to lots of planning for Student Council events this year!”

Interview with Max Lukes

Do you enjoy being the BOE representative?

“I do really enjoy being the BOE representative. It’s a huge honor, and it’s been really great working with Dr. Neigel and the board.”

Do you enjoy going to BOE meetings?

“I do enjoy going to the BOE meetings. As students, we always hear what’s happening from our parents or teachers, so it’s really impactful to learn about issues as they appear. I also find it very interesting to observe the board’s procedure for their meetings, and I like hearing from the community on the problems that pertain to our district.”

What is your least favorite thing about being the representative? I heard that last night’s meeting was eventful.

“My least favorite thing about being the representative is the pressure of the situation. I know that everyone says that there is no pressure, but when you are standing up in front of a room full of people to give an update on the entire school there is definitely pressure involved. As for last night’s meeting, it was somewhat eventful, but it is tame compared to some other recent meetings of the Board. There are some members of our community who are very passionate about their beliefs, and their opinions offended some people in attendance.”

What are you looking forward to about being the representative?

“I’m looking forward to not only representing the school and working with the Board, but also informing the school about what is going on with the Board. As a representative, it is my job to update the Board on the school and also update the student body on the Board, and I look forward to providing more information to the students about what is happening in our district.”

Who is the other representative for the BOE meetings?

“There are actually three other representatives for the BOE meetings. Audrey Panik, the president of Girl Up, is the other representative from the high school. We have been friends for a really long time, and it has been great being a representative with her. The other two representatives are from the middle school, and they were really fun to watch.”

What was your experience with the first meeting?

“The first meeting was honestly nerve-wracking. I felt very unprepared, and it has been a while since I spoke in front of a large group of people. There were also a lot of teachers at this first meeting, so I was nervous to have many of my current and past teachers watch me give an update on the school. However, after the meeting, I was reassured that I actually spoke well and presented well, so I am not so nervous for future meetings.”

Does this align with anything you want to do in the future?

“This doesn’t directly translate to anything I want to do in the future, however, I feel as though it is a great experience to have. It will help to build a foundation for me if I ever have a leadership position in my workplace, and it will build my confidence in front of others when presenting something.”

Did you think that you would be elected to be the BOE representative?

“I did not think that I would be elected to be the BOE representative. There were a couple of people who were asking people to vote for them, and I figured they would be the representative. It was a happy surprise, ironically, to be called down to Dr. Neigel’s office.”

What is a piece of advice you would give future BOE representatives?

“Be confident in what you are saying. You were chosen to be representative for a reason, and you have to trust that you know what to say and how to say it.”