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Graduation 2024: The Impact of WHS

Audrey Roeder

Staff Writer 

May 30, 2024

Photo courtesy of Shannon McQuillen

Netmates - Memories were made during every tennis match.

High school is an important chapter in everyone’s life. Whether the experience was good or bad, it impacted everyone in some way. For most, there was at least one experience or event from high school that will affect the rest of his/her life. 

In some cases, it was a team, a club, an organization, for others it was groups of friends and peers, while for many it was a teacher.

“Mr. Grubb has shown me what it takes to be a leader in any type of situation,” senior Keegan Connor said. “He always believed in my abilities even when I didn’t. His passion is not only for the arts but for his students’ success. Although he was teaching us a foreign language, he always taught his students how to be a kind person.”

Mr. Grubb isn’t the only language teacher who impacted a fellow rock in the best way. Mrs. Holcomb also received a special shoutout.

“Mrs. Holcomb definitely most impacted my life,” senior Shannon McQuillen said. “because no matter how awful and brutal I was at Spanish she would always try and better me not only as a student taking Spanish but as a person. She was always so welcoming and supportive of everyone and seeing her want the best for people made me want to do the same.

Westfield staff also have a lasting effect on exchange students by going out of their way to make these students feel welcome here at Westfield.

Senior and foreign exchange student from Switzerland, Lia Steuri said Mrs. Bever impacted her most, “Because she helped me orientating in [during orientation at] Westfield and teach [taught] me some important English words,” she said. “She also gave me with [put me in] the Language lab class, a safe space for my English to improve.”

Reflecting in the moment - Keegan Connor gives her all in her performance of Cinderella.

Finn Wagner spread similar praises of U.S. history and Psychology teacher, Miss Sucharetza.

“She truly makes everyone feel that they belong,” Wagner said, “and it was not until I felt that I belonged that I could truly flourish.” It is no secret that a student who feels important is one who will thrive, and Wagner thinks this is the best way forward, “the more teachers like [Miss S.], the more positivity that is spread. It all works in a cycle, she makes me feel important; I make others feel important, and we are all happy.”

The teachers here at Westfield weren’t the only impactful thing to Westfield seniors. Clubs and school activities also played a big role in some student's lives.

“The Westfield High School Theatre department was truly a blessing to be a part of!” Connor said. “I’ve learned so much about performing while at Westfield and it’s made me into the performer I am today. I saw the Theatre department’s determination to have the show go on even through rough times and I knew I would grow into this department.”

Whether it was a teacher, a club, a team, or a peer, the impact of WHS will always be felt.

So in the words of former WHS teacher Mr. Joel Bruns, “Be kind, work hard, and make the world a better place.”


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