By Jack Willmore ’24
It’s the night of Sept. 3 and the blinding, flashing lights from the opening football game after-party at Brophy are very noticeable to someone taking a late-night walk by the canal. The students are yelling, dancing and jumping on the already roughed up and muddy grass to the blaring music being played by the DJ. If you rewind almost a year into the past, things weren’t always this way.
After coming off a year with most of the events being online and COVID being a prominent factor, student council and its events feel like they have finally come back to normal. They have been able to host in-person events and gatherings this year, and have been able to just let students get back to having fun.
Mr. Tony Oldani, the advisor for STUCO, said that this year has been stressful and fun. “ It is awesome to kind of have some semblance of a normal room—that part is very good—but there are days in class where everyone is moving around the room and working on different projects together and my brain is both excited about the things we are creating this year but also thinking, how do I contact trace this?”
Contact tracing has been a big part of the planning of STUCO events this year as they still have to worry about the COVID-19 virus. Mr. Oldani also added that it has been extremely difficult to plan things because COVID-19 still being a part of the world.
Another effect of COVID-19 has been the ability to get vendors. “We have great ideas for things we can do and then it’s like, can we track that down now? Pre-COVID we did those things no problem but now it’s like, can we get a food truck to come here?,” Mr. Oldani said.
Something else that has thrown a wrench in the works is that only the seniors who started working in STUCO as sophomores, of all the Student Council body, have ever planned in-person events before. That is almost one-third of the group which sometimes can mean that STUCO takes a little while longer than usual to plan events.
To most students, this kind of planning has been brand new and they have spent a couple of days just thinking on how they would set up the football tailgate, then spending a few days after the event discussing what worked and what didn’t.
“It really is a fluid thing,” said Mr. Pete Burr ’07 on how the STUCO meetings work. “There are different committees working on things like the mixers, homecoming, and things the student body hasn’t even heard of yet.”
Although there have been a lot of students new to the job of planning in-person events, Ben Smith ’24 said he is already loving it, saying that the most enjoyable part of STUCO this year for him has been being able to plan all the events and hang out with all the guys.
The Student Council is also looking forward to possibly having events partially indoors like Homecoming. “We are for sure hoping to do Prom inside,” said Mr. Oldani.
“We are really grateful that they have the pavilion space,” Mr. Burr added. “Students haven’t seen half of what we are capable of doing there.”
A big word this year has been change and that has been the embodiment of the Student Council currently. For the 10-11 years that Mr. Burr has been at Brophy, STUCO has had a really solid system, but with the COVID curveball, they have had to change it up a little bit and come up with new systems for planning.
Even while having so many great events happen so far, both Mr. Oldani and Mr. Burr both had their special, favorite parts of STUCO this year.
Mr. Burr noted that his favorite event was walking over and leading all the students to the football game, while Mr. Oldani said that his has been seeing the seniors getting re-energized knowing that this is their last year, that they can get to some level of normalcy and also seeing the sophomores getting excited to imagine what it could be.