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The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian

The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

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Morningstar X Big Sach X London: the voices of ETHS

Student announcers bring creativity to daily routine

If you’re an ETHS student, there are many traditions that become ingrained into your mind. The tune of the ETHS fight song that we hear at sports games, the chime of the bell after each period and the lyrics of Andy Grammer’s “Keep Your Head Up“ that gets played every Friday are all prime examples. With the year coming to a close, there is one more thing we won’t forget: the student announcers who address us almost every morning and afternoon. With their creative nicknames, fun word play and informative messages, they would be hard to not remember.

When morning announcer Noah Reichlin graduated from ETHS last spring, he left big shoes to fill. The school had to find kids that demonstrated the same charisma and school spirit for the 2024 school year.

Luckily, junior London Thornton, who had started doing afternoon announcements around March of last year, would be reprising her role, but that still left morning announcements unattended. To fill this position, ETHS advertised in the Tuesday Tidbits, a weekly informational video, that students could try out. To do this, students had to submit a voice memo of what they believed their daily announcements could sound like.

In the end, two students were chosen to tackle the morning announcements, sophomore Talia Reichlin and junior Sachin Jain. Due to ETHS being on a block schedule, they split the role, with Jain doing Orange Day announcements on Tuesday and Thursday, Reichlin doing Blue Day announcements on Wednesday and Friday and both of them alternating on Mondays.

This role was special for Talia Reichlin, since her brother Noah held it before her.

“I like that even though he graduated, I am still connected to him. I still feel like he’s there doing it, but I am kind of living out his role and following in his footsteps,” Reichlin stated.

After making their debut at the beginning of the school year, the announcers have been able to fall into their own routines to ensure they are prepared each day. Student Engagement Specialist Katherine Rosemond has supported the announcers to ensure they share important information and have guidelines to follow.

“Thankfully, Ms. Rosemond prints everything out beforehand, and so for the most part she organizes everything, and then I just announce it,” Thornton said.

Despite there being a script the students have to stick to each day, such as sharing what block classes students should head to or reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, the announcers still find a way to add their own personal touches. This can be done through the nicknames they use, fun facts they share or clever puns and rhymes they recite.

“Last year, Mr. Bensko, one of the PE teachers, called me TR, and I wanted my announcements to be catchy and kind of fun and a little corny, so I chose to use that and make a rhyme,” shared Reichlin. “So I say, ‘This is your morningstar none other than the TR.’ I also change morning announcements to be called morning mashups.”

Similarly to Reichlin, Jain also has a nickname he goes by in the announcements, Big Sach, which he created with his friends in seventh grade. To make his announcements more interesting, he decided to incorporate it in his daily speeches along with some other personal touches.

“Over the summer, I was brainstorming a bunch of ideas for an outro. After some time, I came up with, ‘Do E-Town a favor and be on your best behavior,’” Jain explained. “I also wanted to have a bit that I could do everyday and eventually came up with announcing holidays.”

Although we don’t see the announcers during broadcasts, their identities are no secret to the students of ETHS. Peers have met them with undeniable praise for their work and even repeat back to them parts of their daily messages.

“I think I am the only London in this school, and so when people hear my name they are automatically like, ‘Oh, are you the one who does the afternoon announcements?’ And I am like ‘Yeah!’ So it is very nice when I get recognized,” Thornton stated.

“People come up to me and say things like, ‘It’s your morning star,’ and they say parts of my script which is fun,” Reichlin shared.

When students of ETHS were approached to share their own thoughts on the announcements this year, their responses were all positive. Freshman Laney Harris-Stapleton had high praise about the announcements and how they are shared.

“I think that the morning and afternoon announcements are very beneficial for people including myself to get information, reminders, letting people know what new or preexisting clubs there are, and different events that are happening. I also like that different people get to say the announcements,” Harris-Stapleton shared.

Like Harris Stapleton, Sophomore Eva Hansen believes the announcements have positive impacts on her day. She too expressed appreciation for how the afternoon announcements share information about clubs. For morning announcements, Hansen likes how they energize her and prepare her for school.

“The morning announcements always hype me up for the day. When I’m tired in the morning they help me wake up,” Hansen shared.

In addition to getting recognition from peers and expressing their creativity, doing the announcements this past year has given the student announcers wonderful opportunities to become more involved in the ETHS community. By delivering the announcements in the Hub each day, the announcers get to become more familiar with the staff who work there.

“I feel like because I come here almost every single day, eventually staff members were like, ‘Oh you’re here for the announcements.’ So it became a different level of kinship and community,”  Thornton remarked.

The announcements also give Jain, Reichlin and Thornton the opportunity to practice speaking to a large audience.

“I still struggle with public speaking, so I think that being an announcer has opened up this idea of expressing my voice in a way that I have never done before,” Reichlin voiced.

With the support from other students and the unique opportunities they received, it is no surprise that the current announcers want to reprise their roles next year. If you’re a student and want to audition for the role in the future, the current announcers have nothing but support and good wishes for those who will take on their roles once they graduate.

“I remember one morning before announcements, a kid stopped me to say how much he loved my announcements and how he hopes he can do them one day,” Jain recounted. “I felt so validated, and I hope whoever has this gig next can inspire others as well.”

They also have some helpful advice.

“I would tell a student who wants to have the same role as me in the future to be creative because that’s what makes you who you are, and find yourself through the process,” Reichlin stated.

Along with utilizing creativity, the current announcers also think believing in yourself is key to obtaining and thriving in the role.

“If you want to do the announcements, I would say just go for it. Have confidence. If you mess up, you can always try again the next day and get better,” Thornton shared.

If you have the desire to be a student announcer in the future, you should definitely pursue that path. If you bring the same positivity and passion as the current announcers do, it is unquestionable you will brighten the days of fellow Wildkits and brighten the future for yourself.

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About the Contributors
Rory Lehman
Rory Lehman, Digital Staff Member, Staff Writer
Hi, my name is Rory Lehman (she/her/hers) and I am a writer for Arts and Entertainment and a videographer for the Social section. I am a freshman and I am really looking forward to my first year working on The Evanstonian. I have loved to write since a very young age, and after writing for my middle school’s newspaper I knew I wanted to continue to strengthen my journalism skills in high school. Beyond The Evanstonian, I play on the ETHS Girls Frosh Tennis Team, and am a member of Student Council. In my free time I love to channel my inner Rory Gilmore and read, write, and go to coffee shops with friends!
Rowan Kelly
Rowan Kelly, Photographer
My name is Rowan Kelly (he/him), I am a junior, and new to The Evanstonian. I have always been interested in photography, and The Evanstonian inspired me to act on my interest! Outside of the paper, I love to read high fantasy, rock climb, and bike. At ETHS, I am a part of the Science Olympiad club, and Israeli club.
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