Friendship bracelets encourage student bonding


Photo by Kevin Hrozencik

Students relax and foster new connections by making bracelets at RM's Friendship Bracelet Club.

RM is often known for its many competitive clubs, sports teams and honors societies that require the utmost dedication. Often times, these types of extracurriculars tend to be a large source of stress in a student’s life. Sometimes students just need a break from their rigorous academic schedule and find a club devoid of judgment or stress, filled with friendly faces and most importantly, free food. But where could one find such a club? Well, in none other than RM’s very own Friendship Bracelet Club.

This club found its beginnings at the start of the 2018-2019 school year and is led by two juniors, Brooke Hilliard and Samantha Brown. “I decided that I wanted to be able to bring some element of lightheartedness from summer with me. I met Brooke, and the rest is ancient history,” Brown said.

Hilliard and Brown have always had an interest in arts and crafts, both developing a passion for them at a young age at their respective summer camps. “I’ve always liked being creative, but I’ve never viewed myself as the best at anything when it comes to art. [But] I’ve never let that stop me from trying to express myself and have fun,” Brown said.

With their goal of bringing students together, the pair had chosen friendship bracelets as they believe that they have a more profound effect on others. “Friendship bracelets are a wonderful way to connect others, they make a fantastic gift, and you can always learn new patterns no matter how long you’ve been doing it,” Hilliard said.

A typical day of Friendship Bracelet Club is almost as easy as it sounds. “Samantha and I bring out the string, scissors, tape and of course, candy. Our loyal members tend to feed in at the beginning of lunch and we usually have a good amount of first-timers who want to learn new patterns,” Hilliard said.

The club is filled with returning members, constantly chatting and enjoying the calming environment while making bracelets. “Friendship bracelet making is like any skill, you get better as you practice,” Brown said.

The club also does a fantastic job of breaking down the social walls set up by RM, allowing students of all levels of classes to interact and have fun together. “I feel like friendship bracelet club has definitely brought the RM community closer. Since Samantha is in the IB program and I’m not, we were able to bring students from both IB and regular program together, which I think isn’t something you see in every club at RM,” Hilliard said.

The club also has a long term goal set in place to help foster the growth of young artists from around the county. “In the long run, our goal is definitely to be able to execute a bracelet sale, using donated bracelets from club members, and use all the revenues to donate to a local youth art charity,” Brown said.