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The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle

The Student News Site of Harvard-Westlake School

The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle

The Student News Site of Harvard-Westlake School

The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle

Councils bond and prepare for the year at retreats in Big Bear

Sasha Aghnatios/Chronicle
Prefects Gideon Evans ’25, Nyla Shelton ’24, Caroline Cosgrove ’26, Sarah Anschell ’26, Print Managing Editor Davis Marks ’24, Assistant A&E Editor Sasha Aghnatios ’25 and Ellie Borris ’25 pose at Big Bear Lake.

Prefect Council and Community Council traveled to Big Bear Lake for their annual retreats on Aug. 10-12 and 12-13, respectively.

Head Prefect Bari LeBari ’24 said the purpose of retreat is to help the Prefects get to know each other before working together throughout the year.

“The main goal of the retreat is to [build] community within Prefect Council, allow us to get to know each other and become closer, “ LeBari said. “I think we accomplished that goal perfectly.”

LeBari said he is looking forward to making a positive impact as a Prefect given the success of the retreat.

“From a Prefect standpoint, I’m very excited for this year,” LeBari said. “I know this past year has been very troubling for the Harvard-Westlake community, but I think that we have a great variety of people with a lot of different strengths and backgrounds, and I think that we can truly make a positive difference.”

Junior Prefect Gideon Evans 25 said the trip was a rewarding weekend filled with helpful conversations regarding the upcoming school year.

“The retreat was both a bonding and productive experience,” Evans said. “We spent a good amount of time both thinking and discussing about this school year and any changes that would better the school community.”

Evans said he saw the retreat as an opportunity to connect with fellow prefects.

“The retreat definitely brought us all closer as a council,” Evans said. “As a new Prefect, it was the perfect opportunity to get closer with my peers. We played a couple games that definitely helped us get to know one another.”

Community Council member Zoe Roth 24 said the students who attended the retreat benefited, yet the turnout was lackluster.

“I do think it made us closer,” Roth said. “I wish that more people had gone because it was only half the council. So I feel like in the future years, if more people go, it will have more of a benefit for the whole school year because it was a bonding experience.”

Roth said the trip was full of opportunities to grow closer with her councilmembers.

“We drove up,” Roth said. “Then we went and had a group lunch, which was so fun. Then we went swimming in Big Bear Lake, and then we kind of just hung out the rest of the night.”

Community Council member Sophie Shabani ’24 said the retreat achieved similar goals as it offered the group time to learn more about each other.

“I definitely think the retreat helped us bond,” Shabani said. “At night, we decided to all play hot seat together and just talk about our lives, and I think that moment reflected a lot of bonding and growth.”

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