Extracurricular varsity letters require as much work as athletic varsity letters

Jillian Ferry, Assistant Online Editor in Chief

“Students should not get a varsity letter if they do not play school sports” was said to me by a fellow student and over the last month nothing has crossed my mind more.

Letterman jackets, more commonly referred to as varsity jackets, are a place for students to list the activities that they are involved in during high school. Some jackets are covered with varsity letters, other patches and hardware while others have one activity listed, yet each student wear his or hers with pride and school spirit.

While participating in a varsity sport is one common way to receive a varsity letter, marching band, bowling, dance team, robotics, choir and academics are all ways to receive a varsity letter as well. However, unlike a varsity athlete who receives their varsity letter after one season, students in these extracurriculars have to wait an entire year or longer to receive their varsity letter even though they put in an equal amount of commitment. Although some of these extracurriculars are also classes, they all require outside time dedicated to the class.

A student in marching band has to report to the school at 6:30 a.m. which before many students even wake up, as well perform at all home football games and any additional events that they are requested to perform at. For an academic varsity letter a student must achieve a 3.7 grade point average for two years. This achievement is something that students work daily on for two schools years to receive, which requires effective use of class time and occasional late nights full of homework. A choir varsity letter is an accomplishment that takes over six performances of note, music theory, and word memorization to receive. Finally students who are on the Adrenaline Dance Team receive their varsity letter once they complete their senior year on the team, which is after morning Saturday practices, pep rallies and Friday home varsity basketball games.

Varsity letters do not only showcase the students commitment to an extracurricular that they enjoy, varsity letters also showcase the other programs that Fenton has to offer beyond sports. Varsity letters represent the time and effort that students put into activities they participate in, and community members recognize this. When a community member sees a student with a varsity letter they recognize the quality programs that Fenton offers because a student has received this high level achievement.

Students should be proud of these extracurriculars and their achievements. If a student chooses to showcase their achievement on a varsity jacket then they should. No student should have someone say to they that they “do not deserve their varsity letter” just because they do not participate in athletics, there are so many other groups of students that work just as hard as athletes in other extracurriculars.