Upper school counselor Dr. Renea Yates believes it’s good for the soul to give back. This philosophy guides her work as an advisor for the Key Club and Health and Wellness Club at the upper school.
The two clubs are part of a large variety of offerings for upper school students. Their mission, according to Yates, is to give back to the community in some way, whether it’s the upper school, Benjamin at large, or the broader community here in south Florida.
The Key Club, led by co-presidents Savannah Maynard ‘24 and Kori Haggard ‘24, is “all about community service.” The group is currently creating events and opportunities for students to give back to a wide variety of organizations in our local area.
Yates says she’s a boots-on-the-ground type of person when it comes to service and prefers focusing on giving of your time and energy to a cause.
When it comes to her time, she also dedicates herself to the Health and Wellness Club and co-advises the Peer Advisory group with Science Department Chair Dr. Haley.
Yates says she sees club time as an opportunity for social connection and an organic way for students to have fun and meet new people.
Dean of Students Kevin Jacobsen has seen this first-hand as the advisor of the Fishing Club.
Participants learn everything from how to tie and bait a hook, to catch and release. Every few days they can enjoy the 40 minutes of fresh air and “focus on something aside from their studies.” Jacobsen says the goal is to eventually get off campus and partake in some saltwater fishing.
“The intended hope of clubs is for all students to find an individual interest and expand upon it. Our club program runs the gamut of such a wide variety of student interests and I hope students can all find an interest outside of regular academics,” he said.
Jacobsen said the time is intentionally designed to be unstructured. And if no particular club offering piques their interest? Students are able to study, seek out a teacher for extra help, or grab a quick workout in the newly redesigned Fitness Center.
“You can go exercise, talk to a guidance counselor, shoot hoops . . . the 40 minute period of unstructured time provides a broad mental health benefit,” Jacobsen said.
Additional Upper School Club Offerings Include:
Athletic Fellowship Club
Cancer Awareness Club
Mindful Student Club
Mu Alpha Theta
National Art Honor Society
Future Business Leaders of America & Philanthropy Tank
Place of Hope Club
Harvard Model Congress
Space & Astronomy Club
Health and Wellness Club
“I’ve always had an interest in science my whole life. At first I wanted to be a doctor until I took biotech last year and I realized I liked the research/hands on equipment more, which led me to join HOSA.” - Tati Georgas, Club President
“It’s more than a club, it’s almost like an independent study and part of an international chartered organization. It’s like being part of a medical fraternity.” - Amanda Pierman, faculty advisor
Speech and Debate
Jewish Student Union
Veterans Appreciation Club
“My grandfather was a veteran and I’ve always had a soft spot for them.” Luca Balzano, Club Director
“I spent 14 years in the air force . . . during my time in TV I interviewed over 400 vets for a documentary Faces of Freedom. In that interview process my appreciation was even magnified 10-fold for what they have done for our country.” - Ken Archer, Club Advisor
Military History Club
National Honor Society
Students Against Lupus
“Our goal is to show support and appreciation to our school faculty throughout the year for all their hard work. We hand-write letters to them thanking them for what they do, organize appreciation lunches, and send out goodie bags on holidays.” - Nicole Nicklaus, Club President