Standing Together at State High

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Addie Orndorff, Staff Writer

“It is about time we come together as a student body and bring all students into the game without fear.” said Business and History teacher Mr. Kissell. The one behind the idea to change State High Football’s student section, Kissell discussed his ideas about bringing high schoolers together at last.

For years at this school, Football games along with other sports events have been representing a moderate form of discrimination against grades. For many Friday nights at Memorial Field, the Freshman and Sophomore (even Junior) classes have been “banned” from standing in the student section with the upperclassmen…until the 2nd home game of the Little Lion’s season.

This October 2nd was pretty eventful for State College. Not only was it the Homecoming Varsity Football game, but a modification was made regarding the fans:

“We plan on reserving the first eight rows for seniors the rest of the bleachers will be reserved for all students not just 11th graders in any order…” said Kissell. He explains how the student section will include all grades 9-12 and not just grades 11-12 like in the past. Some high schoolers gave their opinions based on the “Stand Together” game.

“It’s cool that we’re working toward equality in the school.” said Kenechi Anumba, a State High sophomore. Anumba has been to a few State High games in the past but didn’t go to the Homecoming game.

“I loved seeing the sea of white from the field. The stands looked a lot fuller.” said defensive end Sheldon Davis. A senior currently in his 4th football season here in State College, Davis provides feedback on the Homecoming game.

“I’m okay with it, but some Juniors and Seniors aren’t – it’s the one thing the Seniors have now.” said Jacob Krantweiss, a sophomore who attended the game.

“We have one goal with the stand together initiative, and that is to simply unite our students to cheer on State.” said senior Lilly Sublett. Sublett worked on and was involved in the creation of the Stand Together video that played on the announcements for all students, staff and everyone to see. The video encouraged students of ALL grade levels to attend the football game on October 2nd.

“It’s good  because everyone is coming together.” said freshman Lexi Risha, in reference to attending the football game. “None of my friends did…I didn’t go in [the stands] because I didn’t know anyone.”

“I don’t want to get hazed.” Ava Michael said, jokingly. Michael is a State High sophomore. “I don’t want to invade [the upperclassmen’s] space,”

“[The student section] was outstanding and helpful to the team.” said sophomore, Dean Baughman. A wide receiver for the lions , Baughman got to hear the student section from the field on October 2nd.

“I’m glad Mr. Kissell created the idea…our student section is so small.” said sophomore Tori Lenze.

Senior Michelle Irwin gives her enthusiastic point of view on the new student section:

“The game was so much fun! I have never seen that many high schoolers cheering as one student section for the football team. It was awesome to see the freshman and sophomores come during the initial stand together game, and then see them return again with smiles on their faces! With double the students, games have been filled with double the loud cheering and screaming which makes it so much more fun!”

Irwin couldn’t have stated the importance of the stand together game any better. Based on reviews from students here at State High, most opinions had a positive outlook towards them. Though a small idea was made by Mr. Kissell, a big outcome is taking place, hoping to last for several years in central PA. Now students, young and old, can feel welcomed and excited to cheer on their football team, or any team, while surrounded by great friends and fans. As many would say, “It’s about time!”

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