The New Academy at Lakeview!


Saige Muresan, reporter

This school year of 2023 Lakeview’s Assemble for Change group has created something extraordinary. Through their combined efforts and a series of meetings, Lily McCarthy and Saige Muresan arrived at the perfect idea. During their December meeting, McCarthy had brought the idea to Muresan, which was taken to Principal Lawrence Herrholtz. Herrholtz had stated he loved the idea and wanted to go forward with it.

Muresan and McCarthy spent 5 months planning and preparing accordingly. They had called it “Freshman Academy”. This academy was all about helping the new upcoming freshman and talking about various topics with them to help them understand high school even more.

Junior Saige Muresan explained, “It was definitely not something that was easy. It took Lily and I months of planning and discussing what we wanted to do. We spent countless hours discussing what we really needed to show these kids. We were so passionate about it and just wanted to make it enjoyable for everyone. Lily and I did this so that these upcoming freshmen knew what to expect from high school and so that they understood more than we did as we came into freshman year. Overall, we just wanted to be prepared for the difference of responsibilities that they will have.”

When creating the form for high school helpers to sign up, Muresan wanted to be clear on why these people were signing up. She asked various questions, and they had to give detailed responses to them. With a huge number of people signing up and giving great feedback, it was extremely difficult to make a selection.

When talking with Junior Ashley Solis, she says wonderful things about the academy.

Solis says, “I enjoyed meeting the new freshman since I don’t know a lot of the current freshmen. I did it to try to show the upperclassman aren’t as scary as I thought they were and to show them what high school is really like. It went very well. I think they listened to us more than anyone else since they see us as role models. I think Lily and Saige chose people who would set really good examples for the incoming freshmen. ” 

McCarthy and Muresan had many objectives for the Academy; it was not only for the freshmen but good opportunities for the upperclassman. They wanted to inspire the chaperones to understand how to talk to certain kids and have more public speaking opportunities. They wanted them to not just learn from what they are doing, but learn from the younger kids, too.

During this process, the chaperones walked the younger kids around the school and showed them where everything was. While doing this, they talked to the upcoming freshman about 7 different topics: hygiene, high school paths, assignments, mental health, social media, relationship changes, and drugs and alcohol.

Senior Dino Haidaris reveals, “I loved it. I thought the tour and topics we covered were so important and I know if I were in 8th grade, I would feel a lot more comfortable coming to the high school. I did it partially because I went to go into education, and I love any experience helping kids. I also did it to make high school seem less scary and more manageable for the eighth graders.”

Muresan and McCarthy are happy to see it went well not only for the upcoming freshman but for the upperclassman. With new challenges ahead, we are excited to continue to do this. Next year the 8th graders will be coming to the high school so instead it will be named “8th-grade Academy”. They know they will have to change the topics based on things ahead, but are still happy knowing they made a difference.