Newton High School senior Annika Senn got the chance to see some of her ideas carried out on a statewide level at the end of the school year.


Senn was nominated by district leadership to participate in a discussion with 50 senior leaders from across the state in April.


After that initial discussion, she and about 14 other seniors were asked to return for another Zoom conference in early May to discuss different barriers they’ve faced, how schools can create experiences that help students and ways to honor and celebrate other seniors.


“I thought it was really interesting to see how other schools from across the state were dealing with it on a school level and then to just kind of know my opinion would be taken into consideration along with the others in the group to do something on a statewide scale and get some of the recognition that they may not necessarily get due to a global pandemic,” Senn said.


The plan they came up with was carried out on May 20. The group organized an appreciation day that encouraged seniors to post on social media with a special hashtag and information about their future plans. They also reached out to famous Kansans to record speeches for the senior class. Adam Larochem, Matt Besler and Juan Thornhill all participated.


Senn plans to attend Kansas State University to study pre-veterinary medicine and will participate in the college’s rowing team.