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Why Mrs. Dunneback Wants You to ‘Just Say Hi’

Editorial: Our principal has been using this slogan to create a friendlier atmosphere. MHS media writer Drew Blackburn is encouraging more people to get on board.
Drew Blackburn
Students at Marist falling into the trap of being on their phone in the hallways.

Have you ever walked down the halls and said “hi” to someone, to be ignored?  At Marist, the faculty and students strive to be a friendly and welcoming environment. The hallways and lunchroom are a place for students to socialize and interact outside a classroom setting. Students over the years, and many believe due to Covid, have lost touch in these times with each other. 

“It’s almost like we had to retrain ourselves how to connect with each others,” says Mrs. Dunneback. 

Mrs. Dunneback has been principal here for almost three years now. She has noticed how students ignore each other in the halls and zone out everything going on.

“Saying hi is a great way to start someone’s morning and make a person feel seen. It spreads,” she says.

A nice smile or just saying hello to someone in the hallways can make a person’s day, or even just saying “hi” back. Just as that can make someone’s day, ignoring them and walking away can ruin it. 

The four minute passing period is your time to get to class, go to the bathroom, and just relax for a minute before class starts. Students should be less on edge and more outgoing during this time. It’s a moment away from work and a time to see friends. Although sometimes people can have an off day, a continuous pattern of silence or ignorance of each other can create a more negative environment here at Marist. 

One reason students don’t say “hi” to each other is because they are nervous about being ignored or coming off as weird. This fear has stemmed from the increase of anxiety in teens especially after Covid. Students need to break out of their shells and look up to see everyone around them. 

Sophomore Faye Bouck says, “In the hallways sometimes I feel that I see everyone on their phones. Even I sometimes fall into the trap of looking at my phone when I’m walking alone.” Many students when walking the hallways will look at their phones and not even acknowledge anything in their surroundings. Kids have gotten so addicted to their phones that in-person communication isn’t first nature anymore. Losing touch with one another can ruin communities and communication skills needed later in life. 

When you are listening to music or looking down at your phone you miss all the people around you. It’s important to branch out and make Marist a stronger community. 

This year Marist students are challenged to be present in school. Breaking away from habits like listening to music in the hallway, constantly being on their phone, or purposefully ignoring others, can make this school a more positive place  for many and can even help you create new bonds with others. 


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About the Contributor
Drew Blackburn, Journalism and Media 2 Writer
Hi, my name is Drew Blackburn. I am currently a junior here at Marist. This year I hope to make the varisty lacrosse team and dean’s list. I enjoy watching Gilmore Girls and going out to eat with my friends. In journalism, I hope to improve my writing skills and be able to minor in journalism.
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