Bigger delegations have systems in place to choose students
Big delegations, such as Lake Park and Neuqua Valley, have over 70 members. So how do they choose who gets to participate and who doesn’t? In answering this question is where most schools differ.
“We have a deadline that the paperwork and payment have to be in, and that is our first out off point.” said Lake Park’s head advisor, John Powell. This procedure is different from the Waubonsie Valley entering process, which requires a separate application.
“They have to fill out our own application. They are looked at to determine bill groups,” said Chris Wolak from Waubonsie Valley.
The biggest group is Neuqua Valley, with a total of 83 delegates. They combine the first-come-first-serve approach with a private application.
“We have a little of both,” says Katie Knopp, one of the advisors from the Neuqua Valley delegation.
“Students must fill out a one-hundred word essay on why they should be able to participate in the program, but we don’t usually cut people,” she said.
Seniority is also a factor in the application process.
Knopp states,”We do try to get seniors in first, and then juniors.” But freshmen are also a good candidates. “The program now allows freshmen, which is nice. It gets them interested early,” said Knopp.
Lake Park tries to get new seniors into the program.
“We want the seniors who have not been in this program to have a chance to experience it,” said Powell.
Once in the large group, one must have certain standards to stay in the program.
Each delegation has varying standards on eligibility.
Waubonsie follows the standards of their school, which has an academic aspect to uphold.
However, Neuqua and Lake Park only require attendance and behavior standards.
Although schools do have a maximum limit, mos do not meet their top quota. All three say the same thing: cuts are not a common event.
Wolack states, “Every school has a quota in the program, but we rarely have to cut anyone.”
Isabella Shaw, from Lake Park, said,”My school doesn’t really cut people, unless they get into trouble at school. Then, someone on the waiting list takes their place.”
(written by Sarah Bate, Decatur Family YMCA)