Not yet addicted to coffee, hundreds of Tremper High School students gulped down hot cocoa as they crammed for finals in the school’s commons Tuesday evening.
The event, “Cocoa & Cram,” aimed to help prepare — and calm — nervous freshmen, who will face their first final exams in the coming days.
The school’s Link Crew of juniors and seniors tutored their younger peers and offered guidance. Link Crew members help integrate freshmen into high school.
“We’re helping them study for finals because finals are really hard as a freshman,” said 17-year-old student organizer Riley Peterson. “Many have never sat through tests like that, and it can be really intimidating.”
Festival Foods provided snacks while the Parent, Teacher, Student Organization provided hot chocolate. The district ordered pizza for all in attendance.
This is the first year the event was held at Tremper.
“Succeeding on finals is super important, and I think all the Link Crew members realize that, but we want the freshmen to realize that, too,” Peterson said. “I’ve had upperclassmen telling me that if there was an event for them, they’d be all over it.”
The three-hour event was followed by a parent presentation about navigating high school credits and the importance of academic excellence.
“I think it’s overwhelmingly successful,” said school counselor Terri Hujik, who helped organize the event. “A lot of them are very nervous (for finals), which is why you have so many kids here. They don’t know what to expect, which is why we have the upperclassmen calming their nerves a little bit.”
Hujik said she hopes “Cocoa & Cram” continues for years to come.
“A lot of times when you ask teachers questions they give you complicated answers,” said freshman Lexe Meier, who appreciated the help from older teens. “It’s nice to get answers put into our own words that we can understand.”