Photo courtesy archive.li
Feb. 4, 2018 – West Bend, WI – A West Bend West High School senior is trying her best to make a difference. Serenity Krueger is collecting signatures on an idea to allow students with more than 100 hours of volunteering to receive a cord at graduation.
Krueger’s petition to West Bend High School administration is on change.org it’s titled, ‘Allow volunteer cords at graduation.‘
When you walk into a High School, you are welcomed by a wide assortment of students. Athletes, Honor/AP students, Humanitarians and so many more different groups of students. So why at the biggest event of our school careers, are only the athletes or scholarly kids given awards or shown any kind of respect at graduation. We are here to change graduation to encompass the whole of the West Bend High School. Our goal is to introduce volunteerism cords to graduation to showcase the huge amount of volunteerism that is within our school. To achieve this cord, a student must meet the requirement of having at least 100 documented hours of volunteering in the community. Overall, this will achieve a more willingness to volunteer around the community for students as well as a sense of involvement and belonging in the school.
Krueger approached Lois Pellegrini, head of the College and Career Center at the West Bend High Schools. “She sent an email to administration, I think Mr. Schlass, and they told me ‘no because graduation is about academics,'” said Krueger.
“That frustrates me, but I believe in this so much I started the petition.”
On Sunday evening the petition had grown to 665 signatures. Krueger is hoping to collect 1,000 signatures.
Some of the comments of support include:
My friends have been really supportive,” said Krueger. “I also researched this and there are other schools that give cords for volunteerism. I think West Bend should be on the forefront in adopting this program and show students they can be recognized even if you’re not in sports or have great grades.”
Krueger, who has tracked over 300 hours of community service, said her idea could even inspire students to want to do more.
“This will hopefully push kids to want to volunteer more,” she said. “A bit of honor or recognition may prompt more kids to step up and help make this a great community. What’s wrong with that?”
Krueger is extremely active in programs such as Elevate, Peers for Peers, S.T.A.N.D. and she has spoken publicly at various anti-drug rallies.
“There are so many different clubs and groups and this is a small step in recognizing young people who work hard to improve our community,” Krueger said.
Questioned whether she planned to introduce her idea to the West Bend School Board, the 17 year old said that idea made her a little nervous, she hoped to move forward with baby steps but she wouldn’t rule it out.
“I just don’t want to get shot down again,” she said.
“Even if it doesn’t make a change this year, it could make a change next year or the year after that…. as long as I can keep pushing this, I will.”
Calls have been placed to Lois Pelligrini and West Bend West Principal Ralph Schlass to see if the volunteer cord could be a possible addition at graduation.
We’ll keep you posted.
If you want to vote on Krueger’s petition click HERE. And feel free to leave a comment on your thoughts about recognizing students at high school graduation