Illustration by Anya Chytrowski
The Humans of Berkeley High club aims to showcase and tell the stories of the different people in the Berkeley High School (BHS) community. Members meet every Friday at lunch in H-208, but their club is best showcased through their Instagram @humansofbhs where they upload photos of different BHS students alongside a caption that describes who they are and quotes from a brief interview. The concept of their club is loosely inspired by the Humans of New York photoblog which has approximately 7.7 million followers on Instagram and shares the experiences of different people in New York.
Humans of Berkeley High club members can typically be seen with cameras around, near, or on campus. “I think when I first joined I wanted to know what this club was about. I was a little confused because they carried cameras, so they could’ve been apart of the yearbook staff or the Jacket team,” said senior Kaya Fields, the co-president of the club alongside Delaney Whitaker. She shared that after learning what the club was, she discovered its primary purpose and continues to remember the club’s goal as co-president.
Fields heard about the Humans of Berkeley High club during her freshman and sophomore year, but it wasn’t until the club fair her junior year that she saw the club’s table and became more interested to join. She was also previously familiar with its page on Instagram.
She shared that the club wants to make an effort to get to know each and every person at BHS. Even if it’s through a social media outlet, at least those in the BHS community can be apart of becoming more familiar with their peers.
“We have the opportunity to find out members of the Berkeley High community’s stories, which is not always something you can do,” said Fields. To achieve this, the club learns about students by asking specific questions.“This club is important because I think it will allow people to see that they are more connected with each other through their stories and opinions,” said Miles Miller, BHS freshman, a club member of Humans of Berkeley High. Miller initially saw members interviewing his friends at lunch and thought it sounded like a good idea to join.
Throughout his time as a club member, he hopes to learn about the variety of stories and opinions BHS students have revolving around different current events. He wants to take the initiative to learn these things to provide them with a proper platform where students can possibly recognize and relate to one another. “This club is unique because it highlights the diversity of BHS by sharing stories from different people of multiple backgrounds,” Miller said.
While the club does not have any bigger projects planned, they aim to get at least one interview a week to post on their @humansofbhs Instagram. Each photo taken of students is posted with their consent, including their interview responses. This year, the club has interviewed about ten BHS students, which are all posted to their Instagram page.
As a club overall, they have had over ninety interviews with different teachers and students of the BHS community.