From subbies to seniors: A tribute to the Class of 2012
Published: Monday, May 21, 2012 - 3:49pm
As the school year winds down, members of the Class of 2012 are preparing to graduate from Uni High this coming Saturday. In previous years, the Gargoyle has published a college destinations list as a tribute to the outgoing senior class. However, this year we have made a change.
Due to complaints from parents and students alike about the message sent by focusing our senior tribute almost exclusively on college choices, the Gargoyle has decided to alter its tradition. As this is an article meant to celebrate the outgoing class's accomplishments in the past five years, not to critique their choices for their futures, we decided that publishing college destinations was not worth the risk of making even one senior uncomfortable.
Thus, we now present to you an alternative way to recognize Uni's outgoing senior class. As you revisit their past five years at this school and read a selection of their parting words, we hope you will join us in congratulating the members of the Class of 2012 and wishing them luck in all their future endeavors.
The Class of 2012 enjoys their subbie retreat. From left to right: Rohit Palekar, Tahar Bowen-Pinto, Sid Madhubalan, Sarah Sutter, and Elena Bauer. Photo by the Gargoyle staff (click to enlarge).
- Abby Radnitzer and Chris Nguyen play hockey together.
- Leah Brown does not wear a weave for the entire year — something that does not hold true for any other year of her Uni career.
- Luke Karmazin gets out of the water balloon games at the subbie retreat by claiming he has expensive electronics in his pockets.
- Conrad Schloer and Aishwarya Guatam are the same height.
- Kathleen Kohl and Andrew Han come and go.
How has the Class of 2012 changed?
"I think the Class of 2012 has gotten much more focused. You guys were kind of all over the place as subbies; you were fun, but you were kind of all over the place. You've gotten much more focused. [...] Your class started young; you're graduating mature."
~ English Teacher Steve Rayburn
Enjoying their freshman Spring Fling. From left to right: Hye Ji Choi, Jamie Blue, Johnny Shapley, Conrad Schloer, François Dossin, Rodney LeNoir, Jason He, and Robbie McMillen (back). Photo by the Gargoyle staff (click to enlarge).
- Elena Bauer and Sarah Yockey take sabbaticals in Germany and Lithuania respectively.
- Joe Easley is the first in the Class of 2012 to get his driver's license.
- Milee Nelson makes her first trip to the IHSA State swim meet.
- Marie Lilly, Sarah Heffley and Sydney Muchnik run a half-marathon.
- John Hadley first realizes the dangers of giving out food at Uni.
- Joey Smith wears a knit bra in class.
- Kevin Kuo takes a trip to Taiwan.
- Or Ashkenazi, Hye Ji Choi, and Aramael Pena-Alcantara move away.
What is one of your favorite memories of the Class of 2012?
"It [the class] had to do with different densities and things; we were talking about atoms. And I said, 'So think about the densities of different substances,' and I said, 'So, for example, your head is made of atoms, and your tabletops are made of atoms. So everybody move your books aside; I want you to hit your head as hard as you can against the table, and then tell me what happens and why.' And Max [Walker] was the first person in all of my years of teaching who actually did that."
~ Biology teacher David Stone
Many members of the Class of 2012 took language trips the summer after sophomore year. Here, Marie Lilly, Tahar Bowen-Pinto, Abby Radnitzer, and Steven Morse are on a plane to Japan. Photo courtesy of Abby Radnitzer (click to enlarge).
- Tanya Denisova and Anna Rubakhina start teaching Hanan Jaber Russian.
- Charlie Bullock cuts off Soren Rasmussen's rattail in Latin class.
- Sarah Sutter is the first member of the Class of 2012 to join Madrigals.
- Carl Haken rides his unicycle to school for the first time.
- Rohit Palekar gets his Starbucks Gold Card.
- Simeon Washington gets a flattop.
- Brendan Morales-Doyle takes his first creative writing class at Uni.
- Ryosuke Minami and François Dossin move out of the country.
- Shruti Vaidya becomes Lunch Duty Shruti.
- Maia Gersten, Rosa Druker and Vivian Hagerty all participate in National Novel Writing Month.
What makes the Class of 2012 unique?
"What makes the Class of 2012 special to me was that you were the last batch of kids I taught as subbies and then again as sophomores, so I got a chance to repair the damage I did when you were young two years later. And you actually came out pretty okay!"
~ Math teacher Gene Bild
The Class of 2012 gets ready for their first prom. From left to right: Tanya Denisova, Ashley Tapping, Marina Shah, Tahar Bowen-Pinto, Sydney Muchnik, Edward Hsieh, Nick Cho, Sarah Heffley, Amalia Dolan, Aishwarya Gautam, Hannah Johlas, Kevin Kuo, Shruti Vaidya, and Sarah Yockey. Photo courtesy of Marina Shah (click to enlarge).
- Claire Billingsley gets dreadlocks in Dennmark.
- Costa Stasinopoulos joins the Class of 2012.
- Thomas Lawless is grounded for two whole months.
- Hannah Johlas wears her first yellow prom dress.
- Steven Morse, Brandon Lin, Joseph Song, and Ezra Winter-Nelson are all members of the new basketball club.
- Jason He starts his donut enterprise.
- Nick Cho, Edward Hsieh, and Tahar Bowen-Pinto are part of a record-breaking 4x100 relay team.
- Kathy Qiu, Aishwarya Guatam, Marina Shah, and Amalia Dolan compete for their third year as a team in Exploravision.
- Andrea Bajcsy and Max Walker move East and Anna Bosch returns to Germany.
Why does the Class of 2012 stand out to you?
"What makes the Class of 2012 unique to me is that so many of you just treated me as if I were an actual human being, which elicited from me all sorts of stories that I probably shouldn't have shared with you and all sorts of behaviors that I'm probably someday going to be sorry for."
~ History teacher Bill Sutton
Many seniors went on the Agora Days Habitat for Humanity trip this year. Shown here from left to right are Edward Hsieh, Abby Radnitzer, Nick Cho, Marie Lilly, Christina Harden (front), Iain Konigsberg (back), Jamie Blue, Nikita Dutta, Leah Malkovich, and Rosa Druker. In front is a local student who attends Spring Initiative. Photo courtesy of Marie Lilly (click to enlarge).
- Will Erickson and Christina Harden direct Big Show 2012.
- Jamie Blue, Marie Lilly, and Annie Rong represent the school as executive Student Council members.
- Ashley Tapping and Rosa Druker go for the short hair look.
- Hoda Sayegh takes 3rd place in regional Poetry Out Loud contest.
- Nikita Dutta attends a variety of weddings.
- Sid Madhubalan goes to the Super Bowl.
- Leah Malkovich finally sees Drake live in concert.
- Iain Konigsberg fits half of a graphing calculator in his mouth during class.
- We lost AJ Martinez, but thankfully not to a car.
- Johnny Shapley gets to use the "Reserved for Johnny" handprint space in the lounge.
- Tahar Bowen-Pinto, Juan Chapa, Rodney LeNoir, Robbie McMillen, and Dax Earl all try facial hair.
What do you hope for the Class of 2012 in the future?
"I wish for you that you have the opportunity to accomplish all of your goals, and that while you do so, you stay safe and thrive. The only limits you have for yourselves are those that you place upon yourselves, so go for it."
~ Athletic Director Sally Walker
SELECTED QUOTES FROM THE CLASS OF 2012
The Gargoyle surveyed every senior during their exit interviews with College Counselor Lisa Micele. Below are some of the comments we received.
- "Really get involved in your time at Uni, whether it be in Student Council, sports, drama, art, etc. It will help you build long lasting friendships. Although it will take up some time, the experience is priceless and will make lasting memories."
"Be organized. Take control of your own education. Stay busy if you don't want to lose your mind."
"To Uni students: Do what you love. Pursue your dreams. Don't let anybody tell you what you have to be. Just because you go to Uni doesn't mean you have to be an engineer or something. Do what you love and makes you happy. You don't have to take calculus and physics and chemistry just to fit in with everybody. Because there's nothing more awesome than being yourself."
"It's okay to relax a little and not worry about managing work and social life."
"I spent way too much time killing myself and not sleeping for things I could have spent a lot less time on. I feel like Uni High taught me I need to lower my standards to a realistic level. It also taught me how to better work with people, through lots of trial and error."
"I leave to the Uni community these words: You are smart, you are important, but don't let your ego get away from you. Do the things you love, but don't give up every normal part of yourself to academia. It really isn't everything. Help someone. Go on a Habitat trip; let it change your life and use the things you learned there to better yourself in every way."
"You'll get through these five years in a blink of an eye. Just enjoy them. There will be tough times, but you'll live."
"I want the teachers and administrators to stop worrying about social stress and issues and focus on our education. Stress is unavoidable. Keep the academic pressure. If this school continues to progress in the way it has in the past year, it will set up kids for failure. A great school is being ruined."
"I've learned a lot about interacting with people who are not always of the same opinion as myself. Uni has also taught me how to get work done when I need to in a short amount of time."
"I have learned that life is what you make of it, and you should be yourself. Surround yourself with good people that make you happy and you'll be much better off."
"Keep an open mind."
"Don't just stay within the Uni bubble; it's good to get out and do things with friends at other schools and in the C-U community."
"Academics aren't everything."
"Find joy in what you do at Uni. If you love what you do and put in an effort, you will get out more than you can ever imagine."