From the Beacon: Out With the Old. . . In With the New
Maura Lindeman ’23
The Shipley All School President, a responsibility greater than imaginable. CEO of Amazon? Bigger. Chief justice? Bigger. President of the United States of America? Think bigger! The position of the Shipley All School President (ASP) is astronomical. All jokes aside though, this individual plays a vital role in student leadership, influencing the academic, athletic, and student life experience for all Shipley students in a given year.
Preceding the historic campaign that recently took place, electing Finn Brenan ’23 as the new ASP, I thought it could be relevant to interview the seasoned, the accomplished, the infamous 2021-2022 Shipley All School President, Griffin Chulik ’22. Griffin, excited to participate in this momentous article, shared with me some key takeaways from his student government experience and some final thoughts as he departs from the Shipley community and begins his college endeavor this fall.
When asked about one takeaway from his leadership role this year, Griffin says that he learned “when to step back and allow other members to take charge.” He goes on to discuss the difficulties of entrusting power to other members of student government, but assures me that sometimes the best decision is to pass certain responsibilities to people that might have more expertise in said area.
Though Griffin seems to have thrived in all aspects of his title, he believes that he could have made Upper School assemblies more entertaining. At the end of the day, Griffin was not just the ASP, he was a student first and foremost; therefore, he understood the never-ending monotonous minutes that make up assemblies. He understood that high schoolers do not respond to information after information and announcement after announcement. Though he did his best to flavor assemblies, Griffin says that he would “want to make them more casual and try to have more activities.”
Shipley’s beloved president also shared his most valuable advice for incoming student government, so all people, big and small, strong and weak, important and not, you are going to want to hear this. “Student government is what you make of it,” Griffin says. He preaches that a leader can put in as much work as they want, and thus, receive the quality of results as they want. Referencing the Spring Fling as an attempt at something new, Griffin claims that “with enough determination to plan and organize everything surrounding it, it can succeed.”
As you can see, the shoes of Griffin Chulik will be big ones to fill. They must be original Jordan 1s colored with a thrilling Super Saturday and an exciting Spring Fling; traditional Nike Dunks designed by swift assembly speeches and informative update emails. Bland black and white Superstars will not do the trick after the Griffin Chulik. So, in transitioning from ASP to ASP, I asked Griffin if he feels comfortable leaving Shipley in the shoes of Finn Brenan. Surely, Griffin believes that despite his lack of experience, Finn “has already made an effort to get to know his role a little better, taking initiative in preparing himself for next year.” Speaking to Finn’s fresh set of student government eyes, Griffin is “excited to see how he can spice up this role.”
I feel honored and spiritually appointed to have had the opportunity to interview such an idolized All School President. Griffin has stretched above and beyond that of a traditional ASP, as he has fulfilled all requirements of this role while also including fun-loving moments and new traditions such as the Spring Fling. Moving forward and switching the big man in office is upon our horizon now as this school year comes to a close. We thank Griffin for his due diligence and heroic service, wishing him the best of luck in leadership positions to come. And, looking towards next year, we get excited to see Finn’s spin on the Shipley All School President. May Griffin’s footprints guide Finn towards a successful 2022-2023 school year!
The Shipley School is a private, coeducational day school for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. Through our commitment to educational excellence, we develop within each student a love of learning and a desire for compassionate participation in the world.