The Student Newspaper of Westminster Christian Academy

The Wildcat Roar

The Student Newspaper of Westminster Christian Academy

The Wildcat Roar

The Student Newspaper of Westminster Christian Academy

The Wildcat Roar

Students Become Teachers

What is Westminster’s PC program and why is it valuable?
Sadie Schmidt
A group of PC girls sit around during a meeting.

Being the new kid at a new school can be difficult and overwhelming at first, especially when you don’t know anyone. To remedy this, the PC program was created over 30 years ago with the goal of connecting new students to each other and to upperclassmen leaders. 


Specifically, PC, an acronym for peer connect groups, are led almost exclusively by juniors and seniors and composed of ten seventh or eighth graders. The groups meet every other Friday in the Cafe to connect over games and breakfast. 


PC originally stood for peer counselor. However, this year brought about a shift in not only the name but the program as a whole. To learn more about the direction of the program and why it’s beneficial for students, 800 news interviewed director of student life, David Ottolini and upper school counselor, Shauna Collision as well as several PC leaders and participants. 


The first and most significant point of interest surrounding PC was the name change. 


“We wanted the name to align with the fundamental purpose of PC.” Ottolini explained. 


According to him, the primary role of PC groups isn’t “peer counseling” instead, it was intended to form and strengthen the relationships of incoming middle school students. For this reason, Mr. Ottolini believed PC should stand for peer connector to truly reflect the goal of the program.  


Mr. Ottolini further explained that in essence, this year is the expansion of the PC program. Specifically, small changes are being instituted that will hopefully have a huge impact on strengthening the foundation of the program which is ultimately honoring Jesus Christ in all things. For example, one of these small changes will be devotional cards that start with an ice breaker and end with thoughtful provoking questions. 


For upperclassmen, PC offers a chance to step up and exhibit servant leadership. This year specifically saw a huge increase in the number of seniors who applied to the program. 


“A lot of seniors applied this year and so we accepted all of them because we know that they have the capacity to lead.” said Collison. 


Students PC leaders also recognize the importance of their role for their own leadership development.


“I think that this year is going to be super fun and formative for both me and the girls.” said senior, Betsie Barnes. 


“PC is already so awesome and I loved getting to spend time with my friends at the retreat and getting to know my leaders.” explained eighth grader, Olivia Whitley. 


The PC program has been enhanced this year by changing its name, re-centering its foundation and allowing the upperclassman the opportunity to go from students to teachers. 

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