Katherine Takoudes Elected StuCo President
On April 8, 2019, the student body elected Katherine Takoudes ’20 to lead Hopkins School for its 360 year.
An active member of the Hopkins community, Takoudes’ accomplishments include being the Senior Features Editor for The Razor, a Pathfinder Volunteer, a captain of the Cross Country and Ski Teams and a member of the Lacrosse Team. She has also been part of Student Council since Junior School, but her interest in student government began much earlier. She explained, “I started student council in fourth grade in my elementary school in Guilford and then when I got to Hopkins, in seventh grade, my advisor encouraged me to run to be an Eighth Grade Representative.” Takoudes was elected StuCo Representative in the Junior School and served as President for the Class of 2020 throughout her high school tenure.
In her speech, Takoudes suggested using technology more effectively on campus: “One of my main initiatives for next year would be for the student body to make better use out of the TVs by promoting events, games, shows, and club meetings on them, which would also minimize the number of all school emails sent out. StuCo would create an electronic form so students could create a poster to include the information they want to see broadcasted on the TVs." Takoudes also hopes to explore online payment options, as she announced in her speech: “I would love to work to create a StuCo Venmo so you could pay for dance tickets, waffles, Hoco shirts, and Haunted House tickets even when you forget cash.” These same methods could prove effective when campaigning for the Connecticut Food Bank Fundraiser: “Those of you who have fundraised in the past are often faced with the excuse of 'oh sorry, I don't have any cash on me' as a reason not to donate. As StuCo prez, next year, I would work on creating ways to donate electronically, whether it be airdropping fundraising links, scanning QR codes, Venmoing money or integrating credit card chip readers into the fundraising norm.”
Takoudes campaigned on the idea of increasing overall school spirit at Hopkins and believed grade-wide events would accomplish this: “[It] would be really awesome to re-tailor the job of the Student Council President to specifically work with Classes and Class Representatives to plan class events and I think for each grade, ” For example, she suggested having a tail-gate only for Juniors in the Fall: “I think a Tailgate in Siberia would be fun [for eleventh-graders] because many [of them] would be driving at that point so they could all drive in before a home game on Smilow, the field by Siberia, and then there could be a grill and some food and yard-games and I think it would be a fun class event to start the year.”
Takoudes recognized adding more events would not necessarily improve participation: “In general, students are so busy after school and on Fridays and adding more events isn’t going to increase attendance to any one of them. I think by adding more things during the school day, so like H and G blocks on Fridays, or during Assembly or lunchtime, would be the best way to go.” Takoudes recommended having the Fall Female Football Game happen at a mutually convenient time for the entire school: “It would be fun to make the Female Football Game, which is a huge Junior v. Senior tradition into an all-school assembly.”
She emphasized the importance of “creating more fun Assemblies” in which all students could participate. Takoudes proposed having more student input, especially in the music played before Assembly starts. She also hopes to add more exciting events, including a game show, to the morning ritual: “This idea for an ‘Are you Smarter than a Seventh Grader?’ is part of my initiative to make Assembly as fun and interactive as possible. At some point during the winter, we could host a game show Assembly where a faculty or staff contestant would compete for a prize by answering actual seventh-grade questions from different subjects.
Takoudes explained she feels more prepared than ever to lead the Student Body: “I’m just so excited for next year. I’ve just always looked up to the Student Council Presidents and I can’t wait to initiate my own ideas but also work with all of Student Council and the student body to bridge that gap between students and administration.”