WSPN looks into the yearbook process


Credit: Thomas Chan

Pictured above is the 2011 WHS yearbook. The yearbook features senior superlatives, which require a lengthy process before publication. “The seniors on yearbook also handle the superlatives, so we have to go through the polls and determine winners for different superlatives,” senior Stephanie Hsu said.

Masha Yakhkind

On Oct. 17, members of the class of 2016 gathered for their progressive dinner to celebrate the four years they have spent together. During the event, senior superlatives were announced.

WHS teacher Corey Lowen runs the yearbook and has given WSPN some insight on what goes on behind the scenes in the process of choosing senior superlatives.

The yearbook has an editorial staff that is in charge of all the different sections of the yearbook. There are business editors, senior section editors, student life editors, underclass editors, activities editors and sports editors. These editors work under the editor-in-chief. This year’s editor-in-chief is senior Luke Xu.

The seniors on yearbook come up with a list of about 35 superlatives. Lowen and the guidance department must approve these superlatives before they are sent out for the seniors to choose their nominees.

In the first quarter of the year, the list of superlatives is sent out to the whole class, and each person nominates their top two choices for each category. Anyone can be nominated for a superlative, and starting last year, WHS has made it non gender specific, meaning two girls or two boys can win.

Next, the top four nominees from each category are sent out again, and the class votes. The person with the most votes is featured in the senior superlative section of the yearbook.

“Every person who gets voted for a superlative is asked by someone on the editorial staff whether they want to accept it or not, and they are allowed to say no,” Lowen said. “If they don’t accept it, it goes to the next runner up and everything moves up the ladder.”

The senior editors are in charge of organization, and they have to make sure that all the seniors turn in their requirements.

“We have to make sure every senior turns in their portrait, baby photo and blurb,” senior editor Stephanie Hsu said. “The seniors on yearbook also handle the superlatives, so we have to go through the polls and determine winners for different superlatives.”

According to Hsu, anyone can join the yearbook and help with organization, ideas and productions. Being creative can help get your ideas published and can also bring you closer with other people you wouldn’t normally talk to.

“This is actually my first year on yearbook, which is proof that you can get involved regardless of age or grade. Ms. Lowen makes it really easy for new kids to sign up,” Hsu said. “I think that yearbook has actually brought me closer with people who I don’t usually talk to or see in the halls, and it’s a nice bonding experience. I definitely recommend that other people sign up.”