Norrix kicks off the school year with Renaissance 2.0


During the last round of the game, Andrew Laboe (middle) explains the rules of the game while Nadia Moore (right) and Andrea Medina-Hernandez (left) look on.

Eleanor Cook, Executive Editor

On Sept. 14, about 200 Loy Norrix Students headed down to the auditorium during second period with little to no information about why they had been selected or what they had been selected for. 

As they filed into the auditorium and took their seats, students received wristbands representing their team color. On the stage, the words “Renaissance Program” were displayed. 

According to Athletic Director Andrew Laboe, the program functioned at Norrix about 15 years prior as a reward for hardworking students. For its 22-23 introduction, students from the drama department, athletic teams and multiple clubs and programs in the school were selected to participate in the opening informational assembly in order to spread information about Renaissance. 

“So often, you don’t get the recognition you deserve for your grades,” Laboe said during the presentation, explaining Renaissance’s main goal: acknowledging hard-working students. 

With the Renaissance program, students who meet the criteria will be invited to attend a once-a-trimester event. 

The requirements for the first trimester event, which is planned for the week of December 7th, is to have a 3.0 GPA or perfect attendance. The second trimester requirements are the same, except a GPA improvement of 0.5 will also earn students an invitation. In the third trimester, recipients of the Norrix Peoples’ Choice Awards — students who are nominated by teachers for their contributions to their classes or to the school — will be invited. 

“We want to capture as many students as possible, generate excitement and reward academic progress,” said April Rocco, one of the collaborators who worked on bringing the program back to Loy Norrix. After the pandemic, having incentive programs became especially important as staff began noticing that students needed more encouragement to keep up their grades and attendance.

The first assembly was a lively imitation of the TV show “The Price is Right,” featuring Loy Norrix students. Four students were randomly selected, each representing a different team. The game show theme continued throughout the event, with raffles being inserted between games. For the raffles, students won gift cards and t-shirts. The rewards for the actual games varied from a multi-pack of colorful socks to a wireless speaker. 

The event concluded with the Showcase Showdown. Two contestants each were assigned a table. In order to win, contestants had to guess the price of all of the items on the table. 

On one table was the “Surviving Loy Norrix” prize pack, which included a Loy Norrix t-shirt, a Nike bag, two tickets to the musical and several other prizes. The other table featured the “Trip to the Kalamazoo Mall,” which included a Kalamazoo sweatshirt, two bags of popcorn from Pop City Popcorn, a gift card to Taco Bob and a mystery bag from Rocket Fizz. 

Freshman Paisley Wall Emerson was one of the attendees of the assembly. While she didn’t participate in any of the games, she still enjoyed the event overall.

“I thought it went really well,” Wall Emerson said, “I thought it brought a lot of people together, which I liked.” Wall Emerson also expressed that she believed Renaissance would gain more student attention than past incentive programs, as the prizes are more substantial and the student group selected is more exclusive.

By the time the event ended, over a dozen students had the opportunity to earn these prizes. As the program is expected to continue through the remainder of the school year, any Loy Norrix student will have the opportunity to attend future events if they meet the criteria of the trimester.


Trimester 1

  • 3.0 GPA
  • perfect attendance


Trimester 2

  • 3.0 GPA
  • perfect attendance
  • an increase of .5 in GPA


Trimester 3

  • Norrix People’s Choice Awards recipients