The National Honor Society’s executive board has created new avenues for students to explore the world of giving back to their community

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Ian Mahoney

All four NHS officers at the NHS induction ceremony.

Though being near blood is known to make many people anxious, senior Max Cooper tends to appreciate anybody who participates in blood drives through FHC. 

Being a part of the National Honor Society has many advantages regarding new opportunities and involvement. In part, the NHS Executive Board—a group of four capable students, each in charge of their own element of the responsibility they share—can be thanked for this. 

Max, in charge of the service pillar of NHS, has done his best to get others to become more passionate about helping others. 

“I think [NHS] has gotten me a lot more involved,” Max said. “I do the blood drives at our school, so at lunch, I go and get people to sign up to do the blood drive. [Whenever] someone tells me that they’re doing the blood drive, I always say, ‘good job, thank you for doing this,’ and I just keep trying to get people to donate because it could potentially save lives.” 

In the 2022-2023 school year, the amount of students in the NHS from FHC has reached a new high, it seems. With over 220 new and returning students participating this year, the members of the executive board have high hopes for participation rates in many activities. 

There are opportunities for those involved in the program to give back to their community in some way, and they are varied enough that there’s something for everyone. The four student captains each have their responsibilities, and they are bound to have different ways of going about these.

“Most people do it because it’s for college,” Max said. “For me, it was both [personal and influenced]. I knew people who did it, but it was mainly personal because I do enjoy giving back and being able to contribute. I used to tutor in freshman year, and when I got to NHS, [I learned] we can use that to help get volunteer hours, and I already had that experience. I was glad that I could help out wherever I needed to.”

Like Max, senior Ian Mahoney—responsible for the scholarship pillar of NHS—is grateful for the opportunities brought through being a member of the executive board. 

“It’s put a lot of responsibility on myself,” Ian said. “And that’s good; it keeps me active in the community. Especially with it being senior year, [most people] tend to relax a bit more, but I’m trying to stay active and keep up with my work in and through the school.”

Ian is in charge of the Academic Success Center at FHC, allowing some students to get the tutoring they may need in their classes, and some students to get volunteer hours by helping them out. 

For the board members, though it may seem to be a lot of work, certain bits of the work done through the NHS can be done somewhat freely, which is something that Ian appreciates greatly. 

“It’s put a lot of responsibility on myself, and that’s good; it keeps me active in the community. Especially with it being senior year, [most people] tend to relax a bit more, but I’m trying to stay active and keep up with my work in and through the school.””

— Ian Mahoney

“Aside from our group meetings, most of the stuff that we have to complete as an executive board member can be done on our own,” Ian explained. “And we have a lot of time to do it, so it’s not too demanding for us.”

Despite the fact that only upperclassmen can join NHS, and only seniors can work on the executive board, the board and its impact is known throughout all of the grade levels, even if it’s not directly noticed sometimes. 

The Academic Success Center and Family Promise fundraiser, to name a couple, have affected all grades in huge ways, and we have the executive board to thank for that. 

“I absolutely think that more people should join NHS,” Ian explained. “It’s an opportunity to impact the community for the better by volunteering.”

Science teacher Patti Richardson—also maintaining the title of NHS Advisor—has had the honor of watching the NHS grow over the years, and this year’s officers have continually satisfied her and her hopes for the school.

Though much in the NHS has remained the same through time, the main thing that was changed was the titles. 

“The biggest change made was the removing of titles,” Richardson said. “Everybody was doing the same jobs, so now we just have the executive board, where each person is in charge of one of the things we do as NHS. Each student on the board has a specific role, rather than the president and vice-president jobs that we used to have.”

However, a notable point to make is that the adults in charge of the NHS don’t choose the officers; rather, the students do. It’s essentially a small election process, allowing the candidates to formulate a speech and present it to their peers. 

In this, the relationship between the officers–the aforementioned Max and Ian, as well the other two officers, seniors Annie Douma and Ayoub Kamari–and the other members of NHS is stronger than it would be had they been chosen without any regard to the student body’s choices. 

“[This year’s board is] doing a good job in terms of keeping track of their different roles,” Richardson explained, “and they’ve already created some new volunteer activities based on their passions and the connections that they’ve made.”

In FHC and all other schools, the sole purpose of the NHS is to allow students to discover new avenues to find new ways to influence their community and their school, as well as to prepare members for the real world and the importance of being active in any given environment. 

All in all, the impact made through the volunteering and effort to improve this environment has affected student life all around the school. 

“[Volunteering is] not the biggest influence in the world,” Max said, “but it definitely feels good to actually be doing something for the cause.”