Editor’s Letter: Alex Cohen

Extracurricular activities connect students to their school and give them a sense of belonging. Globe has certainly fulfilled this promise for me. 

I started high school sitting at my kitchen table, my dog poking his head into my lap or my Zoom calls, hoping for attention or food. I spent 3 months staring at a computer screen, no connection to the people represented by a sea of black boxes. This was the antithesis of high school; it wasn’t education, it was isolation. 

I only looked forward to two Zoom meetings each week, my Newspaper Writing meeting on Mondays and the full Globe staff meeting on Fridays. The energy, enthusiasm and passion of Mrs. Sucher-O’Grady, Ella, Shane, and Angela, with occasional cameos from then-three-month-old Elaine, filled my screen and put a smile on my face. Their hard work and skill inspired me to try journalism, to seek connection and learn to tell stories in the face of a dark and hopeless pandemic world. 

I spent hours on FaceTime with Angela through these months, as she coached me to write my first story, a section of that issue’s politics cover story. She patiently taught me how to reach out to sources, conduct interviews and add quotes to my writing. All the while giving me a new friend and role model. 

On November 9th, 2020, I set foot in CHS for the first time as a student. My four classes that day were all finished by 11:25 a.m., classrooms were filled to less than half capacity with masked students and teachers. The next day was my very first in-person Globe meeting, with many faces projected via Zoom while others sat masked, separated from one another in the dark auditorium. And yet the magic had begun. Mrs. Sucher-O’Grady paced excitedly in front of the stage, showing us articles from the New York Times and helping us to hammer out the Pro/Con for the December issue. Ella and Shane joked with each other, feet hanging off the stage. 

Throughout the winter, I flitted between online and in-person school, hoping to stay out of quarantine. I craved the social connection that I got from being a journalist, whether that was interviewing an interesting professor, collaborating on an article or competing for the high score on our weekly news quiz. 

I completed my other schoolwork as quickly as possible so I could brainstorm story ideas or fix an errant sentence in my draft. I began to spend my study periods in the Globe room, discussing current events with Ivy and Angela, though Mrs. Sucher-O’Grady frequently had to send emails to remedy my absences from study hall. 

I fell in love with the physical space that the room provided, a place that seemed to embody everything that the Globe was. Brightly lit photos lined the walls, and a growing pile of snacks and tea adorned one corner of the room. A set of shelves was filled with old issues of the magazine and a stack of old yearbooks sat on a chipped black coffee table. 

This school year, as full school days and open campus were reinstated, the Globe room once again attained its full glory. Fairy lights are strung across the ceiling of the computer lab and whiteboards are updated with the contact information of the new Editors in Chief. The pile of snacks in the corner grows, replenished monthly, and the dry-erase calendar reflects upcoming sports games and obscure national holidays. 

Yet most importantly, the people and the light have returned to this space. Newspaper Writing classes are held in here, with freshman and sophomores arrayed in the many seating options. Editors and staff members spend their lunches and free time here, discussing politics, current issues or even lamenting the difficulties of chemistry class. Ideas for articles and page designs are born here. 

I spend most of my free time at school in here, talking to Mrs. Sucher-O’Grady and my friends, helping me learn to navigate my own little world as well as the larger one. Some days I sit and listen, taking in the flow of conversation and the wonderful people that make up what is much greater than just a high school newspaper. 

Slowly through the last one and three quarter years of high school, Globe became my place in the chaotic halls of CHS. I have spent countless hours “doing Globe work”, but it is the people around me that have given me a home.