Aaron has been an enthusiastic supporter of volunteer work in the community. His team has participated in our events year after year and shown exemplary dedication. Below is Aaron's interview:
1. How has volunteering in the community shaped who you are today?
Volunteering has given me such a unique perspective on my community. I love being able to meet new people and help out with the events that really connect Las Vegas. It has been so exciting to help forge new bonds within my community- especially in a place as remarkable and diverse as Las Vegas. My whole experience with volunteering has been such an integral part of my life, and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.
2. What advice do you have for high school freshmen wanting to help out in the community?
My biggest piece of advice would be that you don’t have to start big. Even small acts of kindness- like picking up trash at the park or spending a couple hours at the local shelter- can really make a meaningful difference. Large organizations like National Honor Society are fantastic ways to get involved, but there are also countless other ways to help out as well. No matter where you start, remember to reach out and be confident, because your help will always be appreciated.
3. Who or what inspires you to give back to others?
Ms. Simental, our current National Honor Society advisor, has been a huge inspiration. She is a former National Honor Society member herself, and it’s really inspiring to see how she wants to continue making an impact on her local community by helping a new generation of high school students get involved. It has been super cool to see how passionate she is about volunteering, and I’m extremely thankful for all the work she puts in.
4. A fun fact about yourself.
I really enjoy playing a lot of different sports, especially soccer and basketball. My dad has been teaching me how to play sports since I was 3, but despite being 4 inches taller and almost 40 years younger than him, he can still beat me one-on-one in basketball.
In my initial post, I wrote about the reasons for the lack of girls in quiz bowl. The logical next step is to parse out ways to resolve the issue. First off, in terms of recruitment, clubs need to put forth an effort to get more girls involved in the game. In my experience, outreach is vital to introducing potential players, especially girls, to quiz bowl. It also allows for a supportive, encouraging atmosphere within the competition. However, there are other issues present in quiz bowl. Sexism remains a significant impediment to both current and potential players. In my opinion, in order to retain female players, misogyny within the community must be actively condemned by the community at large. To be blunt, whenever something outwardly sexist occurs within the quiz bowl sphere, criticism is abundant and commonplace. However, these incidents don't generally have an impact on individual players. Those incidents consist of comments and actions that occur outside of the public eye that women in quiz bowl regularly contend with. It is how we react to these moments of everyday sexism that determines if we as a community are truly focused on fixing the gender imbalance and the misogynistic culture that exists alongside it. Ultimately, the process by which we can resolve the gender disparity in quiz bowl is to make an effort to bring girls in while combating the misogyny that keeps girls out. The only question left is whether or not we as individuals are willing to do what it takes to rectify this problem.