February 5, 2017

Chuggim: A Method of Organization or Unnecessary?

Sarah Cehelyk ‘18

Two weeks into the 2016-2017 academic year, all high school students were called into the Beit Knesset for an announcement: the addition of chuggim to Golda Och Academy. Two questions filled students’ minds: what is a “chug” and how will this change the club system?
Simply, “chug” is a group of people coming together to enjoy an activity. An example of a new chug that was created is the Sign Language chug. The leaders of the chug teach American Sign Language to anyone interested in learning with no strict time commitment.
While a club requires a teacher adviser, president, vice president and at least two events throughout the year, a chug meets for the sake of enjoying an activity together.
Students at GOA have a history of listing every club imaginable on their college application, even those they were not involved in. Some write-in leadership positions, as Dr. Kanrich most appropriately said in the Class of 2013 senior video, “There cannot be seven presidents of the Community Clothing Club!”
Some students simply want to enjoy a hobby or interest with little to no time commitment while others want to organize events, provide information about a specific cause, or raise money for an organization.
The hope is that giving clubs and chugs separate guidelines will create a clear distinction in order to improve accountability for student leadership positions.
Students hold a wide variety of opinions regarding the addition of chuggim to the community, both positive and negative.
Junior Alex Beigelman said he believes chuggim are a great method of organizing the club system at school but “may have gotten a bit extreme with all the levels and classifications and requirements.”
Beigelman’s opinions were echoed by fellow junior Ariel Gohar, in regard to the extremity of some of the changes.
“The concept still confuses me at this point,” he said, “but it’s nice to see efforts of organization.”
Perhaps the creation of chuggim is an entirely positive change.
Senior Mattan Poller said the concept of chuggim is long overdue and provides students with the courage to create their own student run organizations.
“We are more driven to start groups,” he said, “because we’re not bound to the strict guidelines of a club; chuggim can meet more casually and lead with more freedom.”
Junior Alissa Lampert holds a very similar view. She said since GOA is a small community, it is important for all students to have the opportunity to pursue their passions.
“I think the ability to have chuggim and other low-pressure lunch activities is a great way of getting students involved in the school and discover new interests,” she said.
While some students think the addition of chuggim was a positive change and others slightly unnecessary, the majority agrees that the reorganization of clubs and activities was long overdue.
Hopefully, chuggim will open doors for students to explore and experience new passions and interests within an easy-going atmosphere.

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