Student services hosts Cookiepalooza for freshmen


Kimberly Cruz-Cruz

Freshman collect cookies at Cookiepalooza, an event that introduces them to Student Services. “It’s a safe place for them to come,” school counselor Kerry Hamblin said. “There’s tables and chairs where they can wait, puzzles to do, coloring books, things to read, and we just want to promote a welcoming atmosphere.”

Christina Lu, Editor-in-Chief

All freshmen visited Student Services with their English 9 classes on Thursday, Dec. 1 and Friday, Dec. 2 for the annual Cookiepalooza. Each class had a designated 15 minute slot to meet their counselor, play a game, and eat cookies. 

“As part of our school wide mission to promote belonging of our students, and particularly since the pandemic, we’ve tried pretty hard to make sure everyone feels included here,” school counselor Kerry Hamblin said.

Freshmen played a winter themed game, wrote a sticky note about what brings them joy, and ate freshly made cookies from the Davis Career Center, a Culinary Arts School in Fairfax County.

“It’s a great way to have some fun with our freshmen and introduce them to the other resources that are available up here. It’s a safe place for them to come — there’s tables and chairs, puzzles to do, coloring books, things to read while they wait for us,” Hamblin said.

Student Services aims to promote a welcoming atmosphere and reduce the intimidation students feel about seeing their counselor.

“They appreciate free food, but really, our goal is not to give them a cookie, Hamblin said, “it’s to reduce any barrier that would prevent them from feeling like they can come here.