David Olodort ’12

1. If you are running for the Head Prefect Position and do not win will you also run for Senior Class Prefect? If not, why?

If I do not win, I will run for Senior Class Prefect because I feel I could still contribute to the community greatly in that position and I really enjoy Prefect Council.

2. What makes you feel that you are qualified for the position? Please describe any leadership experiences you’ve had, if applicable.

A Head Prefect at Harvard-Westlake needs to incorporate all aspects of this very diverse community into his/her assessments so that the decision truly reflects the nature of our school. I feel the diversity I encompass in all my different academics, sports, activities, and social life, as well as the ability to adapt to changing ideas, provides me with a strong foundation for interacting with our community as a Head Prefect should and must. By being able to relate to many different students, with individual opinions and interests, and understand our collective perspective as a whole, I can better represent our student body while negotiating with the faculty and administration to achieve the highest success.

Being a Junior Prefect for the first time this year really taught me a lot about the realities and processes of Prefect Council. I feel that armed with this knowledge on how to now achieve goals with efficiency and speed, I can be a great Head Prefect, able to organize and encourage my fellow Prefects. Throughout this year I’ve developed ideas I’d like to implement next year and continue on projects from this year. I feel very comfortable acting in public, assuming leadership and responsibility in order to reach my objectives.

Above all, I really enjoy being a Prefect and I would definitely bring a lot of enthusiasm and energy to Prefect Council next year.

3. How do you feel about the Honor Board and what has led you to feel this way?

I think it is the keystone in keeping our Harvard-Westlake community running smoothly and effectively. We rely upon the committee to preserve and enforce our Honor Code, which, whether we realize it or not, gives us a lot of daily freedom while also dealing with the negative issues that may arise. Now that I’ve experienced firsthand Honor Board cases, I truly see how it can change someone’s life for the better. The Honor Board deals with serious consequences for some infractions and I’ve realized how the group dynamic is crucial to those decisions. The mix of teachers, faculty, and, most importantly, students creates an environment open to many perspectives and fosters a more knowledgeable atmosphere. The adult faction is important for their experience and authority, but it’s really the student Prefects that are vital. They provide a fresh look on a case and drive the conversation.

As a Head Prefect I would lead the Honor Boards cases, which is a responsibility and privilege I would gladly accept. I have the compassion, logic, and broad outlook necessary to conduct a meeting beneficial to both the student violator and the Board as a whole. I’ve seen how, no matter the severity of the infraction, the Honor Board can be that positive push in the right direction.

4. Please describe one thing in Harvard-Westlake’s community you would change. Also, how would you use the influence of the position of Head Prefect to change our community?

Over the course of this year I’ve seen an array of amazing and exciting ideas presented to Prefect Council or sponsored by many clubs and individuals that have sadly not been encouraged or nurtured enough. As Head Prefect I would actively use my influence on the administration and the help of other Prefects to try and empower the rest of the student body in their goals. I think the greatest thing Prefect Council can achieve is providing the resources and guidance to a student or club in creating a project of their own. I think the use of Facebook, Twitter, suggestion boxes, and any other connections could be put to even greater use in empowering the student body through Prefect Council. I would encourage any and every idea, mundane or insane, to at least be given an opportunity to grow. Just this year I saw how a small joke about Starbucks on campus turned into the creation of an extremely popular smoothie bar. It is these sparks of innovation that I would foster as a Head Prefect. I want next year to be a year of immense growth for our school, one where everyone can proudly say, “I made a difference.”