Leadership and Link Crew Host Mixer

By Sophia Ellingson

Link Crew and Leadership students held a “Come Meet Your Facebook Friends” mixer event at lunch on April 24, in hopes of bringing together new friends and developing a positive social atmosphere on campus. Upon entering Ruby Scott Gym, where the event was held, each student was given a number correlating with a specific table to sit at, where they interacted over childhood board games and Rocco’s pizza.

According to Link Crew advisor John Ginsburg, the event’s purpose was “to find a way to make Tam more inclusive socially.”

“Some people have a friend group that’s healthy and fun and they have everything they need, and other people have groups of friends that don’t necessarily make them happy but it’s all they have,” Ginsburg said. “We hoped that our event would help out people who maybe don’t have a very large friend group or a group that makes them feel good about themselves.”

Ten minutes into the event, senior Ryan O’Boyle grabbed the mic and got up to share some of his early high school experiences of being “scrawny” and “awkward.” As the crowd laughed along with O’Boyle at the familiarity of his stories, the atmosphere in the room was that of empathy and amusement.

“I thought sharing my story would help because it would set an example and help people to see what today is all about – meeting new people and getting more comfortable at Tam,” O’Boyle, who now sports an inviting smile and extensive friend group, said. “The more people you know and are comfortable with, the less awkward or strange you feel at school, and the more comfortable you feel at school. Who knows—you might even be able to learn a little more.”

Junior and Link Crew leader Henna Arvind agreed. “High school has such a wide variety of people and it’s important to be exposed to people that you go to the same school with,” she said. “It gives you a different perspective on student lives in your school.”

“It was great. I met some new people that I had never sat down [with] and talked to before,” said event attendee Sergio Mora.

In total, approximately 150 students attended, and it is likely that this type of event will occur annually. “What they were trying to accomplish and what, to some people they accomplished, was to help those people who have a hard time making friends, to meet new people and hopefully this small event will make a big friendship at the end,” Mora said. “Plus, the pizza was amazing.”