Behind The Scenes: What Really Goes On In A Yearbook Meeting?


Upon entering Room 15, the Yearbook Club’s meeting room, I was greeted with hearty smiles and salted popcorn. A whiteboard displayed a glimpse of what looked like a possible Yearbook page, but the projector was promptly turned off upon my entrance.


For the 2022-2023 school year, the Yearbook made a drastic change to how the co-curricular would run. This year, the staff was limited to 10 members.


However, I had the opportunity to join the Yearbook co-curricular meeting for a Blotter-exclusive interview to understand what goes into making the yearbook we know and love.


First, I met the Yearbook’s leadership and staff. Guiding the students were Ms. Gunning, Chair of Physical Education, and Ms. Ryan, Physical Education Teacher.


William W. ‘23, Senior Editor, and Anne M. ‘24, Junior Editor, were the student leaders.


The other staff members elected to be part of the Yearbook’s limited membership were Phoenix B. ‘26, Genevieve E. ‘26, Dean G. ‘25, Theo H. ‘26, Robin M. ‘26, and Jules S. ‘25.


The first question I posed to the staff was what inspired them to join the Yearbook.


“Obviously, the leadership,” Ms. Ryan joked.


A number of staff members agreed that Community Engagement credit motivated them to join the co-curricular.


But, most students expressed a keen dedication to serving their school community as well.


“At the end of the year, it’ll be really nice to see a finished product and know I was part of making it,” said Genevieve E. ‘26.


“I want it to be very memorable for the seniors,” another staff member chimed in.


Of course, some students joined simply to enjoy the club.


“In 9th grade, I just thought it would be fun,” said William W. ‘23.


When I asked the Yearbook Staff to describe the Yearbook’s mission, many members of the Yearbook wanted to represent this year’s senior class and the rest of Berkeley Carroll. The Yearbook team unanimously agreed that they wanted to “capture memories of this year.”


Though I wanted to know more about what goes on behind the scenes of the Yearbook, the Yearbook Club was surprisingly secretive about their activities.


“The first rule about the Yearbook is that we don’t talk about the Yearbook,” said a staff member, “We just don’t.”


While I was able to learn that the Yearbook staff had just decided on a theme for the upcoming year, I was told that this theme is a “top secret” matter. 


However, the Yearbook staff has been working diligently on their work, having met a total of three times for the quarter to discuss their artistic endeavors.


“It’s a lot of work,” Ms. Ryan said.


During the discussion, many members of the staff told me that they “say Jostens” frequently, though I was given little clarity regarding what “Jostens” meant.


Despite any feelings of unclarity, the Yearbook staff members remained kind and cordial throughout the duration of my interview with them. 


After my meeting with the Yearbook staff, however, I had the opportunity to meet with an anonymous informant who identified themself as a former member of the Yearbook staff.


The student explained to me that “Jostens” is a ‘“really bad interface” that the Yearbook uses for their work.


“It gets the job done but, it’s really clunky,” they said.


Another anonymous member wanted to voice their concerns regarding the Yearbook’s secrecy.


“The Yearbook ignores the senior vote. They stifled creative freedom,” they said.


Recently, a number of members of the Senior Class made complaints regarding the Yearbook theme choices. With rumors surrounding a potential “Burn Book” or “Camera” theme floating around, the class was divided on their hopes for the Yearbook but, generally agreed that the seniors should have been consulted on the matter.


Another recent controversy arose surrounding whether or not the Yearbook would include superlatives in the coming edition. These debates have consumed social media, with both the Class of 2023 Instagram page and the official Yearbook Instagram page polling the seniors in order to get a sense of the class’ opinions.


Regardless of the recent Yearbook discourse, the Yearbook Club continues to meet to work on its mission to capture the moment.


Though the student body may not have a clear idea of what the Yearbook will look like this upcoming year, we can only give the staff our support as they work on delivering the best Yearbook ever.