Amanda Perez is currently a sophomore in the International Baccalaureate program at Coral Gables Senior High. This is her first year as a staff writer...
High School Traditions: What’s the Purpose of Class Rings?
September 15, 2019
Throughout high school, students will have the chance to learn a variety of subjects and participate in many clubs. These four years will be filled with many achievements worthy to be celebrated and memories that will stay with us forever. By junior year, graduation will be right around the corner and preparations for the new chapter in students’ lives begin to unfold. Although the year seems long and stressful, it is also very exciting. Junior year is when class rings are purchased.
Class rings are a long lived high school tradition, around since the 1800’s, and it’s something everyone looks forward to. Class rings are worn by students and alumni to commemorate and celebrate their graduation from a high school or college. They are a simple way to proudly carry on your memories of high school through the rest of your life. Historically, symbolic rings have been used by ancient Sumerians and Indians, who wore signet rings to show unity between people or communities. Some historians also say that rings similar to class rings started in ancient Egypt, where a person would wear common totems to show their contribution to a particular cause, class or religion.
The rings are meant to be worn to show school pride and illustrate the great things a student has been involved in during their high school career. The time in which a school will usually start the sales will be on a certain week in August or September, known as Ring Week. On this week, students are given the chance to view their options and pick the styles they like best.
On the ring, you would have a stone, and it would made in the color and shape of your choice. Most of the time it would be your birthstone. The school name will be engraved around the stone and on one side it’ll be your name, while on the other side your graduation year will be written. Under that, you will be able to pick from a variety of symbols that represents you. These symbols pictures sports, extracurricular activities, and hobbies. Theres also a variety of ring styles like Princess, All-Star, LaPetite, Alliance and many more. Class rings really brings out what makes you, well, you. The most popular companies that create them are Jostens, Balfour and Herff Jones. Herff Jones is the company Gables works with to provide our Cavalier class rings.
“As a sophomore, I’m actually really excited about ring week. The idea of getting to design your ring and just make it your own already gets me so hyped. I personally feel that everyone should not miss out, and I just can’t wait till my time comes,” sophomore Kylie Alvarez said.
After the purchase and customizing of a students ring on Ring Week, a special day will be held were you will be able to attend the Ring Ceremony. During this ceremony, faculty, family and friends will all watch you accept your class ring on stage. This ceremony will usually take place in January for every junior who has decided to purchase one.
This will be a very exciting moment for a junior. Once the juniors receive their class rings, it will be worn facing the student. On the students graduation day, after you switch the tassel on your graduation cap to the other side, you turn your ring around so that it is facing outward. This will symbolize that you have officially graduated, and are heading off to college.