by Sophia Cox

Memories can take shape in many different forms through speech, the mind, or videos; however, our yearbook strings together memories through the magic of photography and storytelling. At the end of every year, excitement arises surrounding the reveal of a special scrapbook holding evocations that will be remembered in a unique way by each student. There is a sense of mystery that the book pertains, allowing questions of “Who chose this cover?” to “How did they get this picture?” to pop into the minds of students. This week The Jaguar Post dives into the world of yearbook in order to reveal the secrets that surround its name.
Believe it or not, there is a class at Valley Center High School dedicated to making our special book come together. Once students cross the threshold into the yearbook room, they transform into staffers and editors of a time machine. Editor positions vary such as photo, copy, sports, clubs, design, and editor-in-chief. They are typically given to returning staffers who hold a true passion for creating a quality yearbook. Not only do editors take part in making the book, they also play a big role in running the class itself. The advisor, Mrs. Pluciennik, is merely a fly on the wall when it comes to leading the yearbook class, leaving it up to the editors to take charge of what needs to be accomplished and by when. However, editors needed to learn the ropes of how to create a yearbook through previous years of experience as a staffer.
As a staffer, a student is assigned pages which must be completed by a set deadline so they can be printed on time. These pages are designed and worked on through the yearbook avenue website run by Jostens. Jostens allows staffers and editors to collaborate on pages, store a sea of pictures to be drawn from, and layout the yearbook as a whole. In addition to becoming a professional on the computer, staffers also become quite the photographers by the end of their time on the yearbook team. Without pictures to fill its pages, the yearbook would have no purpose; therefore, it is the team’s job to make sure each and every school or sporting event has a photographer on site. With all these skills, staffers who were once a newcomer to the world of yearbook, have become masters at producing quality work in a short amount of time.
One of the most important aspects of the yearbook is the cover. It is what the student body will see before they open the book and sets the tone for the rest of the work produced. Both the cover and theme are chosen by the yearbook class and are to be kept top secret until the book itself is in the hands of the students. This secrecy allows for excitement to build around the release of the book and helps to boost sales beforehand. However, not every team member agrees on what should be placed upon the front. Some say they would like the school mascot–a jaguar– one the front while others fight for something original that will stand out from previous books. As a trustworthy member of the yearbook team, I am not allowed to disclose what the cover may be; although, I can promise it will be one worth buying.
From interviews, to deadlines, and captions, yearbook may seem like a stress-filled class; however, the benefits are greater than the burdens. Knowing that you were able to be a part of a time machine that fellow classmates will hold onto forever is an irreplaceable feeling. If this class seems like one you might enjoy, feel free to talk to Mrs. Pluciennik or sign up for it when choosing next year’s classes.