Homecoming week at the end of September is a week unmatched at school. Students buzzed around in anticipation, but for many students, it’s another level of stress completely.
Students all over America said that planning dances is highly stressful. Akron Children’s Hospital in Ohio reported that cases in mental health at their hospital usually see an uptake around the weeks leading up to prom. Experts like child and adolescent psychiatrist Laura Markley, who works at Akron, have said they see more adolescent stress and mental health concerns, including suicide, around these times.
“I am going in a group and with a date so I can be with my friends and have fun but still have a date because that will make it a lot more fun too,” said Mara Niemeyer, freshman.
Her group had about 25 students and she and her friends were very involved in planning.
“So far, I think a lot of time went into planning, like probably a little too much, but I think at the end most of it will be worth it,” Niemeyer said.
Freshmen like Niemeyer, who are new to the experience altogether, experienced managing this for the first time. Many students chose to go in large groups, take pictures, eat dinner, then go to the dance.
Sophomore Nico Kiperman said he knew more of what to expect this year.
“The dance was not that fun last year. I was more excited for all the photos and stuff because it seemed really cool, but this year I’m just more excited to hang out,” Kiperman said.
Kiperman said he was not that committed to planning this year, but it may not have been totally because he is a sophomore.
“No, I haven’t done any of the planning because I am a guy and the girls do a lot of the planning because
it’s more important to them,” Kiperman said.
Kiperman said that in his group, in preparation, the girls spend more money, time, and effort into homecoming. He said that many girls felt pressure to get their nails and hair done on top of the cost of tickets and dresses, and it added up to a high expense.
Homecoming week is not only stressful for the students. Many teachers anticipate the homecoming atmosphere too. Ms. Abbey Green, Algebra 2 teacher, agreed that the energy of homecoming is very exciting, but senses that students were stressed.
“I agree that people get very stressed about plans, especially about being in groups versus not feeling like a part of groups,” Green said.
Despite all the stress of planning, groups, and pictures, homecoming is always still a schoolbhighlight. With all the parts that went into the preparation, there was bound to be something interesting for everyone. The “dress-up” days in the week before homecoming were popular and racked up much participation.
The dance is on Saturday, Sept. 28 at 7 p.m.