Distinguished Young Women leads High Interest Day activities


Neha Ajjampore

On High Interest Day, Tirzah Sonderman (‘20), Harriet Huang (‘18) and Caroline Tollar (‘20) help little girls from Swanson Elementary design and wear toilet paper dresses to symbolize self expression, which is an important part of DYW.

Neha Ajjampore, Features Editor

Poised, elegant, proud, and confident; these are just a few of the many qualities that Distinguished Young Women teaches young girls in order to prepare for the real world. The all-female program consists of two areas: club and competition. Within the club, groups of girls are given many opportunities to volunteer for different events, including marching in the parade and elementary school High Interest Days. These special days are meant to provide a sort of boot camp for young girls, setting up events that incorporate the variety of skills that are needed for competition day, if the girls decide to join when they are juniors in high school.

So far, several High Interest Days have been held throughout the past few weeks, located in the elementary schools of the Elmbrook district. For example, a High Interest Day took place at Dixon Elementary on Friday, May 11. A group of seven Distinguished Young Women members ran the event “Be Your Best Self,” which encouraged young girls to identify their dreams and goals and to list the steps they should take to achieve those goals.

The girls learned a short fitness routine, designed and wore toilet paper dresses, and answered questions in a mock group interview. These abilities — fitness, self expression, and interview — are three out of the five components required during the contest, the other two being talent and scholastics.

Mollie Thomas (‘20) says, “I think it is important for kids to have opportunities with things like High Interest Days because it helps them explore their interests.” In addition, by allowing girls in kindergarten through fifth grade to exercise skills that are helpful in everyday life, Distinguished Young Women prepares them for real-world situations such as job interviews.

But the benefits of participating in events like these extend farther than the children involved. Volunteers who sign up to direct the High Interest Days are given the chance to practice their abilities of leadership and mentorship; after all, the younger girls look up to them quite a bit. They must set a good example for the children that admire and aspire to be like them. Aside from that, it is a great occasion to assist kids that are growing up and still learning how to conduct their lives with self-confidence and composure.

Though the events have already started, is not to late to join Distinguished Young Women! Any girls who are interested in volunteering for the club or sophomores who want to participate in the junior-level competition can contact Mrs. Linnihan, the club advisor for Brookfield Central.