AP Fair brings awareness to extensive AP course offerings at ETHS

Rafi DiCrescenzo, Staff Writer

On Dec. 19, ETHS hosted its annual AP Fair. The event, which ran all day, was held in the Hub. Students were encouraged to attend during lunch or free periods, where they watched a brief presentation before dispersing to tables sponsored by various classes. Attendees had the opportunity to speak to current AP students about the type of social and academic experiences that AP courses offer.

“The goal [of the fair] is really just to make sure that students know that they get to make the choices about which classes to take,” said Josh Brown, an English teacher and primary organizer of the event. 

Students are often placed under pressure from friends or family members to conform to a certain academic experience, regardless of their genuine interests. This issue is further complicated by the widespread experience of AP classes as a “secret club” that is unwelcoming towards students of different racial backgrounds.

“A lot of students experience AP classes as a very white space,” said Brown. “We need to make sure that students, especially students of color, experience AP classes as things that are accessible to them.”

The racial homogeneity of ETHS’ AP classes also raises concerns that the schools’ incredible resources are being underutilized. ETHS offers over 30 AP courses, from Art History to Photography to Calculus, yet surprisingly few students enroll. 

“The experience of rigorous courses is so valuable,” said Adela Bautista, a senior who is enrolled in several AP classes. “[Regardless of whether] you’re thinking about going to a four-year college, [APs] teach you about study habits, they offer new opportunities and learning experiences, and they give you access to a wonderful community of both students and teachers.” 

Another senior, Keira Tu, said that the fast pace of AP courses can be highly beneficial. “Being in such a driven, motivated environment really makes you want to work hard and do your best,” said Tu.

In the future, Brown hopes that more students will appreciate the value of AP courses. “The barriers put up [around APs] are not real,” he said. “I think the AP fair helps [students] understand their options. That’s our real goal here.”

For more information on AP courses, visit teamASAP’s website.