Staying busy and staying positive: Erin Tarpgaard

Clara Kasik, Features Editor

Sophomore Erin Tarpgaard has been anything but unoccupied during the pandemic madness we are currently facing. Between schoolwork, clubs, Student Council Executive Board, her position as a youth representative to the Library Board of Trustees for Mary Riley Styles, lacrosse, and down time, Erin has found a great balance for the wide range of activities she does. To learn more about how her year is going, we sat down with her for a Q&A: 

What has online school been like for you?

It has been the best it can be. I love how everyone is bonding together to do the best we can right now. Teachers are generally being kind and students are being kind to each other. I definitely miss everybody but it’s okay.

Why did you decide to run for Student Council Executive Board?

I am really passionate about Mason and the community we have. I’ve loved SCA ever since I started in third grade. I decided to run for exec board because I wanted to take the next step in making an impact at Mason and doing good. I wanted to help make our community stronger. It was a really scary experience to run because you’re just putting yourself out there but it was worth it for sure.

the SCA Exec Board
Above is the SCA Executive Board meeting on Schoology Conferences, of which Erin is the Secretary. (Photo courtesy of Erin Tarpgaard)

What is your favorite part about being on the Student Exec Board?

The people for sure. I’ve got to give a shoutout to CC Meade, she’s the most amazing president and she’s so heartwarming. Every moment we’re promoting what we’re doing and motivating each other to work harder. We’re encouraging each other anytime we do anything and I just feel so supported by them all. We have this motto that we “fail forward” and it’s so nice that if you mess up, it’s okay. Everyone is still going to support you.

Which clubs are you a part of? How did you get involved in them?

I’m a part of a lot of clubs because I just love interaction between Mason students and their passions. I’m on the SCA Exec Board, Young Democrats, GIVE Day Club, Minds Matter Club, and I’m the chair of the SCA Wellness Committee. They’re all so much fun. 

Do you have a favorite club? Why is it your favorite?

Definitely SCA. But also I really love the Minds Matter Club because we work with the Wellness Committee. Emma McDonald is the president and she’s rocking it. It’s a really positive environment and Ms. Hoffman is there, the school psychologist, and we do mindful moments. It’s so calming and I love it.

What’s your favorite thing to do outside of school?

I love to go running with a good playlist because it’s such a good stress reliever. I also love baking, it’s so relaxing and it’s been my savior over quarantine. And I love spending time with my dog in general.

Erin with her dog
Pictured is sophomore Erin Tarpgaard after a daily walk with her dog, Leo. (Photo courtesy of Erin Tarpgaard)

Are there any activities you do that help you feel less overwhelmed with school?

In the Wellness Committee we talk a lot about de-stressing activities and stuff like that. I’d say mine is reading because it takes me out of my own life and puts me into someone else’s story. I love not having to focus on myself and my problems. It makes me feel smaller because all my problems aren’t the biggest thing in the world. I’d recommend reading to everyone.

What has lacrosse been looking like in the past few months?

We have socially distanced clinics that I did over the summer. There’s this clinic that Coach Gibbs is running right now and it’s a volunteer one. There’s little kids there and we teach them how to play lacrosse and it’s adorable. I’m not playing as much as I wish but it’s still so much fun.