Students AVIDly reaching for Success
Written by Emily Fan
AVID. It’s a program most students at ERHS have heard of, but few students actually know what it is. Many students dismiss AVID as just another educational program offered here at East Ridge, but it seems AVID students would disagree. Two seniors in the program, Nathan Casas and Makehba Nelson, both describe AVID to be more of a family than anything else. With a class size of around 400 students per grade level, it becomes increasingly difficult to maintain close relationships between classmates as one progresses through High School. For Nathan and Makehba, AVID has offered them stable relationships in addition to help with school; for freshman Madison Couch, AVID has yet to gain the same amount of emotional meaning, but even though she has just started with the program, she is already realizing the benefits of being in AVID.
AVID has moved far beyond homework help for Nathan and Makehba. For the past four years, they have seen nearly the same group of people every single school day. They know their peers in AVID extremely well and they both feel as if AVID is family. Makehba Nelson shared that her classmates in AVID have provided emotional support during hard times for her. Makehba recalled a particularly stressful day in her sophomore year, school work had been piling up and she had been dealing with some personal issues; due to the stress she was under, Makehba began to cry during AVID that day. Both Makehba and Nathan remember that day well; it was a day when the AVID graduating class of 2018 became much closer emotionally. Makehba described how the rest of the day, she and her peers talked through their problems and offered each other support and advice. For Nathan and Makehba, AVID became not only a place where they could receive advice on homework or schoolwork but also a place where they could receive advice on life in general.
Because Madison, a freshman, has only just become well-acquainted with her peers in AVID, her class has not yet become the family-type atmosphere that Nathan and Makehba speak of so fondly. For Madison, AVID is a fantastic way to get the help she needs to succeed in school. Though Madison and her classmates are not incredibly close yet, they have already begun collaborating with each other. In AVID, students are expected form small groups and work to help each other with any questions they might have about their schoolwork. In addition to getting help from their peers, AVID students are also able to ask tutors questions as well. Madison, Makehba, and Nathan all agree that AVID has provided them with a lot of help educationally. Nathan has found that he has become much more organized since joining AVID; his lack of organization had held him back in the past, but with the help of AVID, he has been able to study more. Makehba and Madison both mentioned that they have found working with other students to be incredibly helpful to them, especially in subject areas that they find themselves struggling in.
According to Nathan, Madison, and Makehba, AVID is greatly helpful program to them from an educational standpoint. It has provided them with an environment that helps them learn better by learning from their peers. Most notable of all, according to the two senior interviewed, AVID has created a sense of family in an educational environment.