Panther leaders spread service throughout the community



Elder High School has been serving the community for years upon years. Through organizations such as the key club and philanthropy club, Elder has been a prominent figure in run-down areas. The Leadership and Initiative club is fairly new, it is run by our own Mr. Nugent and students are enjoying their time spent in this club.

The leaders consist mostly of lacrosse players as recruitment has come from Mr. Nugent. Some seniors involved in this club are Josh Bonovita, Jeff Otis, and Adam James. During the NFL season they went down to Paul Brown Stadium during home games and packed lunches and gave them to homeless people. This is a great idea that provides the needy with healthy food and hope that more help is on the way.

The way they distribute the lunches is a rotation system so that each student can feel the full effect of giving back to the community. This service has affected the homeless so much that our Panther leaders are recognized by who they are helping. The Panthers impact is felt by people in unfortunate conditions; we are branching out away from the Elder area and tackling the downtown area. Elder’s community service is going above and beyond the call of duty by doing this. We are going out to reach to a broader group of people and affect the city and community in a bigger way.

Do not take my word for it, rather take it from the teacher advisor Mr. Nugent. He told me, “Our goal is to help people who can never repay us, and hang out with Chewbacca. We try to get the kids out of their comfort zone and realize what true humility is. It is to not think less of yourself but rather think of yourself less.” He later told me that he is simply the chief not the lord, meaning that he does not have all the answers but he tries to make the students’ dreams a reality. He told me that Jake Rinear and Austin James were big dreamers for the club. Rinear created a back pack drive that gave the homeless back packs stuffed with blankets, hats, and other items to combat the cold. Two hundred of them were packaged and given to the homeless.

I asked Mr. Nugent if we are truly displaying our leadership and initiative in the community he told me, “Jake’s project spawned many other ideas. We branched out to other GCL schools, but only LaSalle agreed to help.” A future plan of the club is to hold an event called Coach’s vs. Cancer with Mr. Currin which shows how great this club is, and will fundraise money for cancer patients.

As for the future of the club the upper classmen of the club will be mentoring under classmen so that they can keep the vibe and ideas of the club in working order and will live on through them. Mr. Nugent tries to be the supervisor and lets the students dream up ideas on how they can help, he tries to make them a reality. The leadership and initiative is spreading how Elder is affecting the community and is doing so in a very respectable and admirable fashion.