Meet the Brooklyn Center Secondary Yearbook squad

Brooklyn Center Secondary visual arts teacher Kevin Green, left, poses with five of his 2016-17 Centaur yearbook committee members; clockwise from upper left: Melody Herr, Sam Dougan, Simone Bjerke, Sheng Vang, and Sando Dougan. (Sun Post staff photo by Christiaan Tarbox)

While the hustle and bustle of cruising towards the finish line of a school year is stressful for any student, it takes an elite squad of Centaurs to put together a yearbook that would make Brooklyn Center’s student body proud.

Visual arts teacher Kevin Green, who oversees Brooklyn Center Secondary School’s yearbook committee, managed to assemble the right squad for the job this year.

“Two years ago, it was a class, and problem with that is that … the kids in the class would not get to choose, so we made an after-school program,” said Green. “I needed kids I could rely on to get it done, and the next year I had kids coming up to me saying, ‘Can I get involved in yearbook (committee)?’”

For the 2016-17 school year, the yearbook committee consisted of 10 students, all seniors save for one. Despite the relatively small crew, the committee managed to adapt to their roles and serve whatever unique responsibilities they were assigned.

“I filled in for people who couldn’t finish their pages,” said senior Melody Herr. “I’m also very nitpicky, so I watch what people do and fix it.”

According to Green, a spreadsheet was created to account for the students’ availability to determine who would take on an assignment and when.

“We all play a part of everything,” said senior Sheng Vang. “Each person is assigned to pages. For pictures, we did it by who is available.”

For the yearbook’s section on extracurricular clubs and sports, a drawn-out, piecemeal approach was taken to properly chronicle the various Centaur activities during the school year.

“We mostly did it by walking around, seeing what clubs were active every day and if there were a lot of people we would take their picture, put the page together,” said senior Simone Bjerke. “(And) with the pictures we took with a little description.”

According to senior Sando Dougan, the yearbook committee worked on the project three days a week.

“We worked Monday, Wednesday and Friday,” she said. “We had people taking pictures every day. We started early in the school year, so early October.”

Despite the daunting task of only 10 students assembling a yearbook, the crew managed to make it work thanks to their teamwork and adherence to deadlines.

“In the beginning, when it really got intense was around deadlines and we didn’t have our pages finished and people would be rushing to complete the tasks they had,” said sophomore Sam Dougan. “We met all our deadlines. We are a small school, and it is really not a daunting task if you know your community and know the people in your school.”

Green admitted that there was a fair amount of micromanaging when it came to assigning tasks to crewmembers, though he still gave his students plenty of leeway.

“I had a Facebook page where Sheng was my fallback if I needed something done,” said Green. “For each individual page, I would let the kids create the general layout of the page, and then Sheng and I would go back in and tweak things to make it look more uniform.”

In the end, Green and his crew were greatly satisfied with their final product, with Green being told by other parties that it was the best yearbook they’ve seen in several years.

“(It was a) great experience,” said Green. “We’re like a little yearbook family.”

Contact Christiaan Tarbox at [email protected]