Band members pump up the UA student section. First row: junior Jeffery Van Schoyck, senior Alex Harris, senior Cormac Bloomfield, senior Scott Smith and  junior Perry Finley. Second row: junior Jason Williams, junior Brian Catwright, senior Brian O’Connell,  junior Anthony Caradonna, and freshman Jurgen Wilkes.

Students share experiences with 2012-13 spirit club, reflect on new changes

By Carly Tovell, ’13

The bass erupts from beneath the stands, and the unified neon section rises to its feet as the black and gold shirts march into the stadium, tubas in tow. The band builds the marching beat of anticipation as the crowd cheers on the Bears.

Senior Scott Smith, section leader of the marching band drumline, said he has seen the emotions of school spirit firsthand, which is reflected in the enthusiastic spirit section. Smith, who has played in the K- row at the high school for four years, has felt the utmost support from his peers of all grades throughout the current season.

“The Spirit Club is important because it has a direct impact on not only what the band and team is bound to do but how we perform in the moment,” he said. “When I see the energy levels of the student section, it enhances the energy level and adds to the feeling.”

Spirit Club was passed off by 2012 UA alumni Kendal Glasser and Emmie Piscopo to current seniors Walker Caldwell, Tommy Goettler and Raul Carvalho. The three boys have been determined to make a difference this year in organizing the student body by getting more underclassmen involved and making themes open to everyone. In order to spread more awareness, each week, themes are reinforced over announcements, as well as on Kickin’ it Live.

Although the club has undergone several changes this year, the most noticeable is the emphasis on increasing younger students’ involvement in meetings and participation.

“This year we made it so that at the club meetings we are more open to suggestions, and more people can participate,” Scott said.

Underclassmen have shown interest in participation, as seen in the stands during this season’s Friday night football games.

Freshman Annie Ackley said the club has done a great job welcoming new members.

“The club has done a great job of making everyone involved and pumped up for the games, along with being much more organized. But I would like to see more people from my grade in the club.”

Goettler, Caldwell and Carvalho agree that Spirit Club brings a sense of community to the high school through organized weekly themes and events.

“I think if the club announced that they were looking for more freshmen to join, then more students could get involved. It’s up to the freshmen to be active and get in there with the upperclassmen.”

“Getting involved with the school and with your friends is really fun if you step up and join clubs.”

He believes the support the club offers is what brings students from the band, the sports teams and the stands all together as one connected student body.

“It already seems like the support this year has been better from last year. The group looks more unified in themes and cheers.”

Smith feels that although in year’s past there have been a lack of participation from the students to support the teams or the band, and he notices improvements in the spirit for 2012, as a community. Carvalho agreed with Smith’s statements.

“I think that the Spirit Club really brings us all together as a community, and we can only go up from here,” Carvalho said.

Smith said it has become apparent that the students this year have formed one unit with their support of the band and teams as a whole.

“After the first game, I was told by one of the Spirit Club leaders that he was so focused on the drumline during the third quarter he missed a breakaway touchdown by UA,” he said. “That made an impact on me, solidifying the tone and support we expect to see from the Spirit Club this coming year.”