Senior Class president provides year-end perspective

Helmen notes unity as graduation approaches

Senior+Class+president+Connor+Helmen+was+crowned+the+prom+prince+during+his+junior+year.+
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Senior Class president provides year-end perspective

Senior Class president Connor Helmen was crowned the prom prince during his junior year.

Senior Class president Connor Helmen was crowned the prom prince during his junior year.

Photo submitted

Senior Class president Connor Helmen was crowned the prom prince during his junior year.

Photo submitted

Photo submitted

Senior Class president Connor Helmen was crowned the prom prince during his junior year.

Angel Luo, Reporter

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Approaching the end of the school year, seniors find themselves excited for their future college experiences and eagerly and anxiously counting down and cherishing their last high school memories. The Senior Class president, Connor Helmen, is in this position as not just a member of the class, but as its leader.

Throughout the year, Helmen, along with his fellow Cabinet members, Luke Cerar; his sister, Lauren Helmen; Angelica Letcher; Michael McNulty; Gretchen Tull; and Bobby Welch, along their the class moderators, Mrs. Katie Lewis and Mr. Gary Spurgin, have planned and organized numerous events for the Class of 2019, the last of which will be graduation on May 19 at the Old National Centre.

Not only do they sacrifice their spare time to prepare for activities, but they also serve as leaders in supporting and encouraging each person of the Class of 2019. For all of the events they organized, Helmen said he and his fellow class officers usually started creating ideas in a group chat and then formulated a plan to execute. He said they worked as a whole and have become experienced with immediate changes and additional needs.

Helmen said that he is grateful for having a strong and understanding team as his companions. “Conflicts can turn into solutions very quick when I have team like this behind me to help me out,” he said.

As a leader of the Senior Class, Helmen has also helped planning significant events for his class such as the upcoming Irish 500, TP Night, Homecoming lip synch battle and Winterfest. As the class president, Helmen said that he is both pleased and honored sharing his high school experiences with the Class of 2019, especially seniors’ three championships in class competitions during Homecoming week.

From this school year, the Homecoming week is also Helmen’s personal favorite. As a leader representing his class, Helmen said he experienced Homecoming week from a slightly different but fascinating perspective. “Organizing a whole class to get spirit, plan out a hallway and bring items to win the spirit stick was so much fun. We waited all year for the stick and when it finally was in my hands it was the biggest sign of relief. I could stop stressing and finally relax,” he said.

Seeing the friendship among all seniors develop, Helmen would love more such experiences with the Senior Class if the opportunity presents itself. He said, “The retreats do a great job to bond a class, but I wish there were days in which the grade could come together through something other than religion.”

All of the glory, happiness, and pride class leaders brought to the Senior Class came from their work behind the scenes. In order to balance his academics and extracurricular activities, Helmen said he learned to use every second of his spare time at school to complete his tasks, so that he does not feel compelled to do homework after late night after school activities.

Besides serving as the class president, Helmen played varsity soccer and was a member of  ComedySportz (High School League), liturgy team, Student Ambassador and Holy Cross Council. He as a retreat leader and a cast member of the spring musical.

Add this to list his attendance at almost every morning Mass in the chapel, and his schedule was a hectic one.  Although being occupied in a lot of ways inside and outside of school, Helmen still said he feels honored and pleased to serve his classmates who are passionate and sincere. “(We can) always be there for each other.”

Helmen said enrolling at Cathedral was one of his best decisions, because he believes this is the best high school in Indiana. Being the third generation from his family to graduate from here, Helmen said he feels he has an even stronger connection with the school.

Moreover, he is not the only member of his family to graduate this year. He thinks being one of the triplets makes himself lucky. He loves his two siblings, his “two built-in best friends who will be there for (me) all the time and never go away,” he said.

He said that the company of his two sisters has a positive impact on him and provides him help and comfort both socially and academically. “If you have a bad day, you know at the end of the day you are going to be able to go home and annoy two people who love you endlessly,” he said.

Helmen can still recall the day he was surprised being informed by his sister that he was elected as the president of the Class of 2019. “I thought it was some joke or something. Memories and ideas immediately started popping in my head and at that minute I was ready to assume my role,” he said was his first thought after hearing about the news.

Beyond what Helmen has accomplished this year as a class president, he still hopes to keep his motivation and energy for a positive ending for his senior year. “My last steps here are make a speech for Baccalaureate Mass and keep my grades up. If I can get both these things done, then I will be one happy class president,”  Helmen also plans to attend Xavier University and he hopes to get involved in student government there as well, he said.

Helmen said he wishes to appreciate peers and as well as the educators who have supported him along the way. He said, “Whether it’s Mrs. (Charlene) Witka when leading retreats, Mr. (Jere) Kubuske for listening and being open to my ideas or even my everyday teachers that are fun and loving, I see them as friends and not as staff members.” (And) teachers like Mrs. Klee, Mrs. Jamel, Mrs. Lewis, Mrs. VanWienen, Mr. Cannaday and Mr. Jensen.

He also noted his appreciation for theology teacher Mr. Matt Cannaday, theology teacher Mr. Ken Jensen, theology teacher Mrs. Katie Klee, theology teacher Mrs. Katie Lewis and English teacher Mrs. Elizabeth VanWienen.

Besides these educators, his peers have become the ones who have him as well, Helmen said. “You know that you are going to get a laugh when you talk to Jacob Schommer in flex or maybe learn something when you listen to what someone like Blake Lowe has to say. Your day will turn better if you listen to Michael McNulty talk and I could sit in a conversation with JJ Lay for literal hours. There are so many people here at Cathedral that have different character traits and different skills that are all unique. I love that our class has molded into the people they want to be and broke down all stereotypes,” he said.

His final observation about the the Class of 2019, he said, is that its members “bonded together, separated cliques, branched out, and all became friends.”

 

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