Commissioner of Creativity At El Modena

Senior Isabella Perez gives insight on her experience as VAPA commissioner at El Modena.


Morgan Hill

Isabella Perez

Frontline: “What’s your position in ASB?”

Isabella Perez: “I’m Visual and Performing Arts, or VAPA, Commissioner.”

FL: “What does that position entail?”

IP: “When I interviewed for the position I asked what the different teachers of the department would like to see from me and they simply asked to be more seen and visible. So I have done my best to publicize all the events that are going on in the department through our Instagram page I run, @emhsvapadepartment. I do this through posting flyers for the many shows and attending all the ones I can to take videos and publish them for students who were not able to attend to see. I have also made it my job to see that more students that are taking the several different art classes receive recognition for their amazing work. There is an incredible amount of talent in all of the students of the performing arts department and I believe they deserve to be awarded for their work by receiving “Artist of the Week” on the Instagram.”

FL: “What inspired you to apply for that position?”

IP: “I was inspired to apply for this position because I simply love the arts department with all of my heart. I have been a part of it in many regards throughout all four years of high school. I have been a part of VDC since freshman year, have taken part in the spring musical since sophomore year, and have taken graphic design. While being a part of the company, those events, and that class, I witnessed so many students work so hard to create wonderful performances or pieces of art and met the many teachers who put their soul into helping students achieve these goals. When I would describe these things to my friends who weren’t in those classes or had never attended one of the many performances, they would have no idea about them or how great they were. I decided in my final year of high school I would make it my mission to join ASB and help the VAPA department in beginning to receive the recognition it deserves and inspire more students to attend and get involved.”

FL: “What has been your favorite part of being in that position?”

IP: “My favorite part of being VAPA commissioner is meeting and interacting with a multitude of talented students. When interviewing students for “Artist of the Week” i have gotten the chance to learn the story of and inspiration for so many up and coming artists of the student body. They inspire me endlessly and I wish them all the best in life and in their art.

FL: “Do you have any advice for the person who takes over that position next year?”

IP: “My advice for anyone taking the position next year would be to be on top of it and don’t be afraid to communicate with others for help. it’s important to make connections with all teachers in the department and students too in order to maintain an idea of and help publicize all performing arts events. send them an email or pop into their room every once in a while to catch up and keep an open mind. also please continue “Artist of the Week” and expand it anyway your heart desires. It is important to recognize the artists of El Modena for their talent, they deserve it and I want them to feel seen.”

FL: “Are there any things you wish you could have done, but weren’t able to?”

IP: “Sadly, due to school’s cancellation for the time being, I most likely will not be able to put together an event I would call the vanguard gala. my vision for the vanguard gala would be to display the amazing work of the students in all levels of art, photography, graphic design, and ceramics in an open house style in the cafeteria or gym, in the quad have band, orchestra, and color guard perform, and have dance, choir, and drama perform pieces and speak about their programs on the stage. While the arts are displayed at back to school night, they are often pushed to the side and have no students to represent them or show off their craft. having this event would showcase the programs to their fullest to the parents of students in these classes already, students at El Mo who may be interested in joining, or prospective students. Hopefully the commissioner next year will be able to make this event happen or in the hopes of school resuming, I’ll be able to make this event happen.”

FL: “How has your position made you see the El Modena student body differently?”

IP: “Being VAPA commissioner has helped me to see the diversity of the student body. Seeing as I was already immersed in the creative side of the school being a part of the arts department myself, I have been able to see and understand other aspects of it that I hadn’t before. It has been an honor to get the chance to know all the aspects of the department and work my hardest to represent them.

FL: “What has been your favorite assembly that ASB has put together?”

IP: “That’s such a hard question! I would have to say my favorite assembly we put together would have to be the fall sports assembly. two weeks before we decided we wanted to make it different than any assembly we have had before. We established a nickelodeon theme and worked super hard painting posters to cover the entire gym. We stayed at school until 10:00 the night before taping up all of our decorations and got to school at 6:00 to finish up. It was our first time and we had done exactly what we wanted as we say the gym transform before our eyes. It was amazing and a great feat of teamwork and determination.”

FL: “What is something you accomplished this year that you are proud of?”

IP: “Something that i’m proud of is beginning my “Artist of the Week” project in the VAPA Instagram page. It began simply with me selecting students with the help of the department teachers. Once I met the student, I would give them a homemade certificate and take their portrait on my phone and interview them. After I nominated a student from the photography class, the teacher, Mr. Phun, graciously reached out to me to help escalate my project to a whole new level. With his help, the students who were nominated were able to receive beautiful portraits of them showcasing their artistic talent in a way that my phone could not capture. That has made me so proud to see and I’m happy I was able to begin this project.”

FL: “What will you miss about ASB?”

IP: “The thing i will miss most is the people and the camaraderie. It was so awesome to get to know a group of people who were also determined to make El Mo the best it could be and help it shine in all aspects.”

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