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Campus leader reminisces, encourages student participation

Braden Bell | The Feather Online

Student Body President Braden Bell’s mission is to encourage students to go beyond themselves, owning the idea that we all have opportunities to build our community.

The effects of loneliness and a lack of confidence either guide a person to seek change or further alienates and isolates the individual or group.

Thrust into the fast-paced and challenging reality of high school, I joined the Fresno Christian campus my freshman year, hoping for relationships that would last a lifetime. 

However, during the first weeks of school, I often “found” myself eating lunch alone and without the confidence to speak up in classes. I furthered my inward insecurities by excusing myself from extra-curricular activities.

While many of my peers began to distance themselves from authority figures, I chose to seek help from my parents, family and teachers. Using their insight, I realized it was time for me to break out of my shell and own my responsibility to fix myself.

Thankfully, there were many classmates who came alongside me and helped shape me into who I am today. While I would never understand all the inside jokes or experiences from long-time attendees of FCS, I made it my mission to make new memories with those around me and invest in my school community.

A small school has its benefits and drawbacks, along with the chance to know everyone by name and grow with classmates individually. Campus students can participate in multiple activities and engage in a unique learning experience. At the same time, it’s hard to get away from weekly drama and tough to break into existing cliques. 

Braden Bell | The Feather Online

The effects of loneliness either guide a person to seek change or further alienates and isolates the individual.

The solution to inclusivity doesn’t happen overnight. However, in an effort to avoid senior exclusivity and to bring others together, I plan to change my routine this semester. I am committed to setting aside one lunchtime a week to spend time with others outside my normal community; maybe to meet someone new.

By encouraging participation at school events, sports games, chapel and homecoming, we all can find many opportunities to get involved, even in areas we may be uncomfortable.

Another option is the possible addition of the app, “Sit With Us”. The social networking app is designed to promote kindness and inclusion in schools. Through various lunchtime events hosted by students, it is encouraged that no one needs to eat alone.

Ultimately, you can only go so far to try and include someone. It comes down to the willingness of the individual to find the desire within themselves to get involved. 

To all the new students, I would like to say welcome! Coming into a private school is hard, however, you will soon find your place here and realize how valued you are. 

The heart behind my mission is to be a catalyst for togetherness, encouraging students to go beyond themselves and owning the idea that we all have opportunities to build our community.

For more articles on student impact, read Lets Talk: Social Media or Hope: Lets Talk

Braden Bell can be reached via email: Braden BellInstagram and Twitter.

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