Explore South through clubs

Clubs, clubs, and more clubs. For students who want to explore their community and branch out, the 135 clubs available at South can offer a fulfilling experience, senior Denisse Nazare, student officer of the Onward House Tutoring, explained. 

Kathy Coskey, Onward House Tutoring Sponsor, described Onward House as a nonprofit community center in Chicago for tutoring young students. On Tuesdays, the Onward House Tutoring Club takes 12-13 student volunteers to the Onward Neighborhood House. 

 Onward House is more than just a study session, junior Ryan Choi, Onward House Student Officer said.

“The whole idea [of Onward House] is to tutor [younger students], but I think a lot of it is just being a friend, having a nice experience, and playing games,” Choi said. 

Not only do the younger kids at Onward Neighborhood House have a fun time, the high school students do too, Coskey said. 

“The high school students really get a sense that they’re doing something [fulfilling],” Coskey said. “And the little kids get a big brother [or] big sister relationship with an older student.” 

Back to campus, Mock Trial team mimics the courtroom experience, allowing those involved to take on the role of plaintiff, defense lawyer, or even the defendant in mock cases, Gwen Quigley, Mock Trial Team Co-Sponsor and Coach, explained. Quigley described that the team handles real-life cases and helps prepare teenagers for adulthood.

 “Having some familiarity in legal language, and feeling empowered to tackle legal conversations is really valuable,” Quigley said. “[Mock Trial is] a good public speaking opportunity.” 

Sophomore Kathleen Sawyer, who joined the Mock Trial team her freshman year, recognizes the intimidating nature of the team because it studies the law, but she encourages everyone to give it a try.

“[Mock Trial is] a very fun experience, and I really like how everyone works together as a team,” Sawyer said. 

Another club offered at South is Amnesty Club. Jerry Fogarty, social studies teacher and  Amnesty Club Sponsor, explained that many students join the club because they believe it is important to get involved in human rights.

“[Some issues we discuss are] human trafficking, imprisonmenet for political ideology, in some countries it can be even imprisonment for sexual orientation and gender idenity,” Fogarty said.

 Like many other clubs offered at South, Bags Club is one students can join to have fun without any worries or struggles about their next homework assignment, Dan Rhoades, social studies and Bags Club Sponsor, explained. 

“[Bags Club gives students] a sense of belonging and [an] understanding [of] how important it is to prioritize people and conversations,” Rhoades said. “I think what’s really nice is no one is on their phones during games, like everyone just makes sure they are there in the moment.”

After two years in Bags Club, senior Kalen Mehta applauds the social nature of the club. Mehta added that Bags Club is an enriching experience for building connections with students from various grade levels.

“It is a great place to socialize and meet other people,” Mehta said. “Clubs at [South] are mainly used for college [applications] only, [but Bags Club] is a chance to hang out with your friends and play bags.”