ASB plans virtual events in hopes of keeping students engaged September 14, 2020 — by Avani Kongetira and Kavita Sundaram Photo by Avani KongetiraStudents Play virtual games while socializing in After Hours From After Hours to a virtual Homecoming week, ASB has been working hard to make the most of the year With school completely online and little in person activities, it isn’t hard for the average student to completely disconnect, sit around and do nothing. Despite the challenges of online school, members of the ASB are working to keep students engaged and involved, create fun activities for the school and maintain an active social environment. One new activity ASB has been hosting is called After Hours, an after-school Zoom meeting open to all students every Tuesday at 4 p.m. The event is hosted by Leadership students and usually has an audience of 10-20 students. After Hours lasts between 30 minutes to one hour, and typically includes online games such as skribbl.io and Quiplash. For freshman Eric Norris, After Hours was an enjoyable experience where he was able to play virtual games and interact with new people. “It was fun to talk to older students who knew something about my teachers,” Norris said. Apart from this new event, ASB has also worked to make the best of traditional in-person activities in an online format. They are planning a mini Homecoming celebration in late September as well as a virtual spirit week, which will include spirit mask decorating competitions, dress-up days and a lip-dub video. Although having virtual school activities is unconventional, ASB is doing everything they can to make the events as successful as possible. “Although the virtual aspect does make it a challenge to increase school spirit and bring the community together, we have a great collaborative leadership class to tackle the task,” said the ASB president, senior Cynthia Zhang. While ASB has planned a virtual Homecoming and spirit weeks this fall, the actual Homecoming has been postponed and combined with Spring Fling so that it can be in-person next semester. ASB is also working to continue running regular school events such as clubs. “We want to offer a variety of communities on campus even in a remote setting, so we are spending a lot of time making sure conventional school activities are running as smoothly as possible,” Zhang said. The ASB has worked to create a dynamic club schedule for students to refer to, as well as regularly reminding students of class events via Facebook or Instagram. While the student turnout for After Hours has been fairly low, ASB is hoping to increase this by getting Link Crew leaders more involved, informing parents about it and expanding to a larger range of activities in After Hours. “It’s easy to go through high school on auto pilot, but we’re definitely trying to make the most of it,” Zhang said.