Seminars: Love ’em or hate ’em?


tiger paw photo

Allison Auer (9) and Sarah Hinkamp (9) color from pages in a coloring book in the Zen Coloring seminar in Mrs. Amy Crean’s room. This is from the first seminar day of semester two (Jan. 27).

For the last year, seminars at OHS have been surrounded by mixed feelings. The new semester has brought with it many interesting new seminars as well as many diverse opinions from students.

Some of the newest seminars include Cell Phone Photography where students learn how to take good photos with better quality with their phones rather than a professional camera. Disney + is a seminar in which students review the app as well as the movies and shows. Zen Coloring is also new. Here students get to use zen coloring as a stress relief. Another one of the entertaining seminars is Salsa Dancing Basics, where students are taught the basics of salsa as well as salsa moves.

Mr. Carlos Espinosa, known to most students as Profe, was the one who came up with the idea for a seminar about the basics of salsa dancing. Mr. Espinosa was a new teacher last year at OHS from Colombia in South America. Growing up in Colombia gave him a background in the art of salsa, making him the perfect fit.

“I really struggled with figuring out what I wanted to do for seminars,” Espinosa said. “I heard a song one morning that sparked the idea to do salsa basics.” Since then his seminar filled up quickly with students eager to learn something new.

Olivia Rausch (10) found something she likes. As a freshman last year she only had the opportunity to do one seminar. This year, however, she is in the robotic seminar with friends, two things she thoroughly enjoys. 

“I get to do stuff I love,” she said.

However, many students stand on the opposite end of the spectrum of the love-hate relationship with seminars.

Helen Tolcou (11) has repeatedly said how she does not like seminars at all and sees no purpose in them. 

“They just take up valuable homework time,” Tolcou said, adding that even new, more interesting seminars would not change her mind. She would rather have time to do her homework.

Mrs. Christy Mathews, who coordinates seminars, said that the influx of seminars is due to the amount of student suggestions for seminars. Most seminars come from either student or teacher recommendations. She also said that seminars are being used to help with mental and social problems as well as dealing with the amounts of stress students undergo in high school.

When it comes to seminars, not every student will be happy with the choices available, but the staff is doing their best to provide as many options as possible.