French Club votes in new co-vice presidents

Liv Krusinski, In-Studio Camera Editor

Seniors Danielle Glewwe and Ana Souffront have won the election as co-vice presidents of French Club, and are very excited to have this leadership role once again while expressing their love of the French language.

French Club is open to students grades 10-12th, and meets every other Tuesday in room E115. It’s a place where students can learn French and socialize in a fun relaxed environment. French Club is always looking to accept and welcome new members.

“It’s an opportunity for students to come and practice their French in a totally un-judged, no grade attached to and full on setting.” French teacher Jacqueline Parr explained, who supervises the club.

Together, co-presidents Glewwe and Souffront have come up with some exciting ideas to spice up French club this year. They have hopes to attend a French play in the Twin Cities this year and try to find bits of France in the local areas around them. They really want to try and immerse students in the language.

“We want to encourage the speaking of French in French club this year because that has been a bit of an issue in the past. We also want to make it more like a family than just a club, because past years haven’t really been close and we want to make people comfortable,” said Glewwe.

The first of many events coming up this year is National French Week. It takes place during the first week of November, and is honored nationwide.

“National French Week began about 15 years ago by the National French Organization, which is an organization for French teachers. They started it to promote the study of French. It happens on a national level, everybody in every state in the US celebrates National French Week,” Parr explained.

Members of the French Club get involved in the excitement of this event.  They have a few traditions they follow, and everyone is happy to participate.

“We always decorate the language hallway. We’re hoping to put up a huge French flag in the main rotunda and sell French foods as a fundraiser for French club. We just create the awareness that it’s National French Week. It’s all about celebrating the French language and culture,” Souffront said.

“When I started learning French as a junior high student, it felt like it had opened up the whole world to me. I realized that there was more to life than just Minnesota and the place where I was living and the place where I grew up.””

— Jacqueline Parr

Another way members celebrate is with food. In the past they have sold chocolate and plain croissants in the rotunda during French Week, but the last few years members have worked concessions for the football games. If the ponies make it to playoffs they will be selling concessions again this year. They hope to find someplace local to supply croissants and bring them back into the school making sure they’re cheap enough for the students. Not only do they celebrate by selling French foods, they take the time to make some as well.

“Food is a huge part of French culture, so last year we did a bake-off of tarts. This year, I think I’m going to push them to do chocolate mousse, something a little bit different, more challenging,” said Parr.

The club is trying to figure out how they can do some sort of community service that would also be language affiliated. It’s one of their big goals that they would like to accomplish before March.

“In past years, we made valentines for kids at the Children’s Hospital. We’re hoping to do something that relates more to the French language and still helps people,” said Glewwe.

French Club takes the study of language and culture as a very important, but interesting and enjoyable topic. They work on communication skills, learning and social skills, as well as preparing themselves to be fully immersed in the culture they’ve learned to love so deeply.

I love French and I love French class. I love the people that are in it, and this year I’m actually going to France so I want to have more experiences with the French language.”

— Ana Souffront

“I love French and I love French class. I love the people that are in it, and this year I’m actually going to France so I want to have more experiences with the French language,” Souffront explained.

These leaders all share the same passion and love for the French and their ways, and hope to inspire others to feel the same.

“When I started learning French as a junior high student, it felt like it had opened up the whole world to me. I realized that there was more to life than just Minnesota and the place where I was living and the place where I grew up. I had this incredible passion and desire to go discover it. The study of language when I was young sparked a desire to experience the world in a new and different way. That’s why I want to teach, that’s why I’m here. Because I know what happens. It changes lives.” Parr said.