Burroughs faculty shares HOCO memories


Sophia Pendergast, Staff Reporter

Students often remember Homecoming as a whirlwind event filled with spirit days, fancy clothes and lots of dancing. However, many don’t realize that Homecoming offers a chance for former students to come back together and celebrate.
For some Burroughs High School staff, every day is a Homecoming. Burroughs has many faculty members who eventually made their way back to the same school that they attended — only instead of learning, they are teaching.
Each of the returning Burros has his or her own reason for returning back to Burroughs. Some were in search of better pay, or wanted to work and live closer to family. Others felt a draw to Burroughs that they hadn’t felt elsewhere.
“There is something really wonderful and unique about BHS students that is nowhere to be found,” says Burroughs alumna and now Art and English teacher Tristan Kratz.
The inexplicable draw that some faculty have found bringing them back to Burroughs has given them a strong sense of familiarity and home. Many have found that it has made them a better teacher to their students, having been in their shoes once before.
“I have a better understanding of the students and understand how they feel,” said English teacher Peter Marvin. “I remember being at BHS and wanting nothing more than to leave town as soon as I graduated. I think it helps me empathize with the students better because I was once sitting in their desks.”
As students learn under the instruction of their teachers, knowing that they once went through the same hardships and celebrated the experiences they do, all in the exact same school, may be what makes Burroughs students thrive.
Burroughs prides itself on a sense of tradition, but recent years have seen a great deal of change as well. Since our time in high school is so short, most students don’t get to see the big changes that happen on campus. New buildings, classrooms, or simple campus touch-ups always seem to occur after graduation. However, returning Burroughs alumni get the opportunity to see how their campus has transformed since they were students.
“Burroughs has changed since I went to school here,” said Principal Carrie Cope. “The engineering building wasn’t here, the lockers were outside, the administration building was at the back of the school. We only had tenth- to twelfth-graders at Burroughs when I was a student.”
While it may be hard for current students to visualize, they may someday get to see the additions of new buildings on campus as well.
The timeless tradition of Homecoming is one that students of generations past, present, and future get to experience. With a week full of excitement, games, and other spirited activities, Burroughs students also get to experience the same activities that some of their teachers once did. Many traditions unique to Burroughs still shine through as we prepare for our upcoming Homecoming game and dance.
“I think my favorite tradition is painting B-Mountain,” said Marvin. “Back when we painted B-Mountain, we weren’t as smart and didn’t wear any protective clothing, so what I remember most is being hosed down trying to wash off the paint while shivering in the October cold.”
For Kratz, the favorite memory involved the rivalry between the APUSH Trogs and the AP English APEs, including decorating Roseth’s classroom and competing in a tug-of-war.
For other teachers, the more things change, the more they stay the same.
“What I remember most about Homecoming week were the spirit days and playing in the band at the football game – things that I still get to do!” said new Band Director Brian Cosner.
Ultimately the long-standing festivities of Homecoming are a unifying experience, as teachers and students alike are filled with the excitement.
“I like the fact that Homecoming brings the school together and brings a lot of school spirit,” said Cope.
Whether a senior preparing for their last homecoming dance or a freshman preparing for their first, one can’t help but wonder if someday the spirit of Burroughs will one day guide them back to Ridgecrest.