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LI Student Council Keeps Traditions Alive

May 12th, 2020

Student government is one of the most active organizations at Lyndon Institute. It consists of a Student Council president, a vice president, a secretary, a treasurer, and twenty-four class representatives from all four grades. The other half of student government is comprised of the class officers, which includes a president, a vice president, a secretary, and a treasurer for each class. Elections for Student Council take place in the spring and class officer positions are up for election in the fall. Student Council meets every Tuesday after school to discuss current issues and student concerns, as well as plan school and community events. This year many of the senior members were coming up on our fourth or third year as members of the Student Council, and we were motivated to get the ball rolling quickly with student events.

The first event Student Council organized to kick off the year was our Go Vikes Day, a day to celebrate all Vikings and provide a fun lead up to the Barrel Bowl football game against North Country. Student Council designed new maroon “Go Vikes” shirts to sell to students at cost to provide affordable Viking gear for students to wear to games and to school on Viking Fridays. These shirts quickly spread around the school, showing Viking pride all over the community. Go Vikes Day started with a half-day of classes and then an afternoon of activities including a pep assembly afterwards which students arrived on Vail Campus to find Matty Green transformed into a lawn of activities, including flag football, volleyball, team building games and ultimate to name a few. There was a variety of snacks and drinks to choose from, and the student center was filled with board games, pool, and Foosball. After this afternoon of activities, everyone carpooled or took the fan bus to the Barrel Bowl to watch our team win the Barrel.

After Go Vikes Day, Student Council kept the ball rolling and went straight into Spirit Week. This year the big game was at home, which meant Student Council had more opportunities to demonstrate our school spirit to the community and our guests.  Spirit Week is a huge undertaking; it takes everyone in our community to make it happen.  Every year during Spirit Week, class officers are responsible for organizing their classes in making a banner, building a float, attending other sporting events, and dressing up for participation. Participation in the week’s events is essential to each class, especially in helping determine the winner of our yearly school-wide Clash of the Classes competition.  Keeping track of participation is a significant responsibility of the class officers, including checking off names of students who dressed for the theme of the day, attended sporting events, and worked on creating the float and the banner.  Spirit Week also includes Student Council’s biggest food drive. This year during Spirit Week, our school donated 4,606 items to HOPE and the Lyndon Area Food Shelf, something we are all very proud of. 

Spirit Week is not only about building spirit, it is also about building community. Floats have always been the most important part of the week for students.  You can feel the excitement growing as the class floats pull into the main building parking lot at school.  You can see everyone from students to parents and teachers craning their necks to see what each class was able to create and trying to figure out who made the best float that year.  It is also an incredible feeling knowing that the citizens of the town of Lyndonville come out every year rain or shine to watch the students sing “Sweet Caroline” on their floats, yell cheers along the parade route, and watch the crowning of the court in Bandstand Park.  It feels like you are part of something bigger than a high school football game; it feels like a family and it is one of the many reasons we love being Vikings.  

After the pep rally in Bandstand Park, students arrive back on Matty Green for a Bonfire and BBQ organized by Student Council. We host laser tag and glow in the dark volleyball, and Matty Green is lit up with Christmas lights around the trees and fences. After this night of fun, Student Council is back at Bandstand Park the next morning with coffee and doughnuts at 7:15 a.m. to walk the park and the town and pick up all of the trash from the pep rally and clean up the school grounds.  During home games, Student Council takes banners from graduated classes and hangs them from all of the windows of the school overlooking the field.  This year we decided to hang the banners along the railing of the track so that visitors could better see them.  Although it is a tremendous amount of work, Spirit Week is a time full of pride and community for not only our school, but our town as well. It is a feeling that students will never forget.

After exams, break, and J Term, Student Council was ready to begin the second half of the year and kick things off with a special Winter Carnival. Of course, we didn't know it at the time, but this year’s Winter Carnival was our last time working altogether for the year. This year's Winter Carnival theme was fairy tales and Student Council worked to organize both indoor and outdoor activities, dress up days, another food drive for the community, as well as our long tradition of Airband, a lip-synching competition that is attended by a broad audience of family and friends to see some great acts, including a guest appearance by The Beatles!  This year, due to a conflict with the schedule, we crowned the court in Alumni Gym on Winter Carnival Day like they used to so many Winter Carnivals ago. Every year on Winter Carnival Day students participate in a variety of activities, such as broom hockey, basketball, volleyball, three-legged soccer, pie eating, dodgeball, and tug of war with their classmates. Participation on this day is essential to winning Clash of the Classes and there was a ton of participation throughout the day around campus.  Sadly for all of us, Winter Carnival was our last activity before the schools had to close their buildings.  What gives us some comfort is knowing that we didn’t waste a moment of time this year and we enjoyed every second.  If there is a life lesson to take away from all of this, that is what we will remember.

After four years at Lyndon Institute, if I could recommend getting involved with anything in the school it would be student government. Everyone in student government has a passion for the school and the community and we truly bleed maroon and white.  Not only do the members of student government get to be involved in the school, but we also get to make an impact on the community. Beyond the major two weeks student government handles at school there is 8th-grade Move Up Day to help with, new student orientation, open house, giving tours to prospective students, and dorm student move in day.  Every meeting is filled with lively discussion and active planning and decision making of events. Student government is the reason behind many people's favorite memories of high school, and it is so amazing to be a part of something with such strong roots and traditions. To be following the same traditions as my grandparents and parents is special, and student government is behind continuing those traditions, as well as creating new memories. Student government also has the most amazing advisor, Mrs. Smith.  She runs every election and is in the room at every meeting. She brings coffee and doughnuts on Spirit Week and Winter Carnival mornings. She is the one who shows up and leads by example. Mrs. Smith is the sole reason behind the Student Council being able to do everything that it does and have a large impact on the community. Student Council is one of the oldest and most special organizations at Lyndon Institute and, through the efforts of its members, the traditions of LI and the spirit of Vikings continue to grow year after year. 

Written By:  Caitlin Taylor, Class of 2020
                     Senior Student Council Representative
                     Senior Class Vice President

Photo Caption: Lyndon Institute students participate in the Winter Carnival broom hockey event on January 21, 2020. Winter Carnival is one of many events and activities that the LI Student Council organizes and plans throughout the school year.

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