WHS Yearbook Club adapts amidst COVID-19


Photo courtesy of Jason Lara-Rodriguez

The 2020-2021 yearbook cover.

For many WHS students, the last hurrah of the school year is spent passing around yearbooks, signing “HAGS” and flipping through pictures to commemorate the school year.  However, with COVID-19 presenting an unusual school experience, many students are left wondering how their yearbook will look this year. Nonetheless, the Yearbook Club staff is working hard alongside the yearbook company, Jostens, and the photography company, Normandy Studio, to make this yearbook special. 

Students can submit pictures for the yearbook through the Yearbook Club’s website, which can be accessed through the Student Activities section of WHS’s website or by clicking here. Ryan McGarrigan, guidance counselor and Yearbook Club co-advisor, explained, “The book is meant to capture memories throughout high school, so we are encouraging students to submit photos that reflect any point of their high school years.”

WHS senior Jason Lara-Rodriguez is the president of the Yearbook Club and the Editor-in-Chief of the yearbook’s production team and said that the biggest difference in the yearbook production this year is that it will be finished around May or June instead of its typical deadline in April. 

Due to the extended time, students will receive their yearbook around July or August. This delay is mostly because of the limited opportunities for the Yearbook Club to meet. The inability to collaborate and communicate in person has been an obstacle for the club, but they continue to meet with each other online every Tuesday. 

Another difficulty that the Yearbook Club has faced this year is the deficit of photos that are taken in school. Most WHS students are familiar with the student life candids from the yearbook’s photography company, Normandy Studios. The photos, which capture moments in classes and extracurriculars, have been limited due to the lack of students in school, so the Club is more reliant on the submissions from their website. 

McGarrigan said he was “excited at the prospect of a more personalized yearbook in a difficult year.” With more student contributions, the yearbook will include parts of the WHS experience that may have been overlooked in previous years. 

Despite the challenges COVID-19 has brought to the Yearbook Club this year, Lara-Rodriguez has found some benefits to the new production process. He appreciated how the club has adapted and came up with new ideas for the yearbook. For example, while the superlatives section of the yearbook typically focused on seniors, this year the section covers students of all grade levels. Due to the Yearbook Club’s creativity, this year’s yearbook will be unlike any other and according to Lara-Rodriguez, the club’s goal is to include all students. 

As the Yearbook Club moves on with production, they encourage students to check the yearbook website and their school email to be aware of scheduling for school portraits and deadlines for submitting photos. As Lara-Rodriguez said, “even though the Yearbook Club is in charge of making the whole yearbook, without the help of the students, teachers, and the other clubs, there is no Yearbook Club and no yearbook.”