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Letter to the Editor
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Senior Reflection: Chloe McDonald

As I look back at my time at FCS I realize that the best memories were the ones made with friends. (Brianna Bishel)

My senior year was full of surprises, starting with not knowing I would be attending Fresno Christian. Amidst Covid and the transitions that came with it, I found myself switching schools a few times. In fact, I’ve been to nine different schools. However, none have impacted me as much as Fresno Christian has.

Having been in public schools all my life, I was shocked to experience the vast difference of being in a Christian setting. It has been nothing short of a blessing, and I wouldn’t change it for anything. Here, everyone feels like family, and I’ve made the deepest friendships I could ever imagine.

This all began my Junior year, which was filled with much encouragement from Julia Castiglione, ’25, and my history teacher on joining the schools journalism team. 

“Join the Feather,” Kori James would persistently ask day after day. 

Every day my answer remained the same, “I’m good Mrs. James!” 

I had missed the informational meeting and didn’t even know that this “The Feather” had a website. I didn’t even know what The Feather was. All I knew was that they had a cool social media presence on Instagram. 

Eventually, it began to weigh on me, “What did the Feather adviser see in me to pursue me so strongly?” 

Danielle Arndt, ’26, and I in New York. The two of us had found out that we were distant cousins, though we always say we’re pretty much cousins without the distant. (Benson Elbert)

It was strange, having just transferred into the school I knew no one.

I had no connections and was simply another smiling face in the crowd. 

I remember the decision wasn’t easy; I was scared of trying something incredibly new. I was scared of how much work there would be. I was scared that I would be outcasted simply because I was new, the friends who had been friends for years would rather not accept the new change.

Though why not try something new? What was stopping me? I weighed it back and forth, as I had been looking forward to a casual senior year without a heavy workload.

The pros outweighed the cons. 

Mainly my cousin, Danielle Arndt, ‘26, was on the team and a class with her is a good class.

My first time doing a live interview was with the very kind mayor of Fresno, Jerry Dyer. (Benson Elbert)

I remember rushing to the counselor’s office and barging in:

“Mrs. Escovedo! Can I please change my course request again… no, no, I’m certain about this.” 

So it began, Advanced Digital Media will be my second class of the day, as well as becoming James’ teacher aid for her sixth period. As school rolled around and the weather was still hot everyone was soon into their thing. People who love photos became photographers, people who love videos became videographers and people who love writing became journalists.

I became a journalist. 

Having observed me for a year, James decided that I would make a good fit as an editor. I would help others with their English and grammar while being a leader. I loved it. 

As an editor, I wondered if there was a certain job that I should be in charge of, other than editing what everyone else wrote. What was my thing? When I asked James, she said, 

“I don’t want to keep you in a box.”

I certainly did not stay in a box.

Sports, Features, Promotional articles, I got to write them all. I visited sports events and games and interviewed the athletes. I wrote about outstanding Eagles on campus and even grew my friendships with them. I advertised for events that were coming up for students, or raised awareness about how the sports teams were doing. 

Freshman Blake Bay, 27′, my inspiration for writing sports articles and now a good friend. (Benson Elbert)

My favorite article I’ve ever written is on a freshman named Blake Bay. I had previously known little about him except knew he was an outstanding athlete who was a runner. Bay does both track and cross country. Within his first season he smashed multiple school records. Writing and interviewing him was extremely fun, as he was so outstanding in his accomplishments he was also extremely humble and kind. I have written a lot about our running sports on campus and have asked him multiple times for clarification on the sport and what not. Despite my article being quite amazing in my eyes, as I am quite proud of it, what I am more proud of is the friendship I made with Bay and the teams.

Both sports teams felt honored to receive an article written about them and constantly supported me in my time in the class. I would receive kind text messages of encouragement from them whenever they read my recent articles. 

A group of classmates turned into dear friends. People who I can rely on and turn to for help. (Benson Elbert)

Moving forward, I wrote and wrote, having a passion for representing my classmates. Within my senior year, I have written 32 articles. 32 articles about my school, my experiences, and my peers.

It seems very impressive but it wasn’t always easy.

There was one article in particular that was a bit of a wall for me. I had to rewrite multiple times as I didn’t know what approach to take. I struggled with whether to represent the athlete raw or sensitively as it was about her injury that stopped her from playing her sport her senior year. I wanted to represent her properly and honor her. I had felt stuck and was uncertain about how to write. 

Though I wasn’t alone, I had my advisors, my fellow editors, and my journalist friends to help me. There were times when I felt overwhelmed, I always had someone to catch me.  We got it published in three weeks.

My favorite memory from my time on the Feather is New York. New York was an unforgettable experience that I greatly enjoyed and benefitted from. I had to learn how to manage my time as this was a business trip where we worked hard and got to play hard.


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However, as I stared at the clock saying 3 am pushing out an article of a wrap-up of the day prior, I wished for more sleep. Which I don’t miss as I got to experience once-in-a-lifetime type things. On that week trip, I had the opportunity to see beautiful museums like the Metropolitan Museum of Art, or the MET where I wished I could’ve stayed all day. Then I also got to teach and offer advice to other journalism students. During my one week stay in the city that never sleeps, I helped publish four articles; writing, overseeing and editing all of them. 

Though being an editor can feel like a lot I have my team to fall back on. They have been there every step of the way, to which I dedicate a thank you to my teachers, and friends.



Thank you to everyone, especially:

  • My teachers: Kori James and Dorina Gilmore-Young 
    • Thank you for pushing me and helping mentor me. I am extremely grateful for everything you have done to touch my life.
  • My Photo People: (Sophomores) Benson Elbert, Natalie Garcia, and Madi Durham 
    • You guys make my article pop! I couldn’t do it without you. No one wants to read an article without pictures. I love your photography and I can’t wait to live vicariously through your photos even when I am not here.
  • My editors: (Sophomores) Danielle Arndt and Delaney Meyers
    • Thank you for helping me be a leader, for showing me that I do not have to shoulder everything and theres people who always want to help. For showing me that it takes a village, and I have a village.
  • My counselor: Evangelina Escovedo
    • Thank you for guiding me and being a true friend. Thank you for helping me navigate high school and holding my hand as I take the first steps to college. Thanks for putting up with me and every unannounced visit into your office.
  • My beloved friends: (Juniors) Lily Kahrimanian, Jacob Pimentel, and Jasity Wilborn!
    • Thank you for loving me through the thick and thin. You are very special, I have loved every second we spend together. Every laugh, smile, and fun time together! I will miss you tremendously but I realize that just because I won’t be here, doesn’t mean I won’t love you any less. I will keep in touch with no matter what, there is no one like you. I love you more than you know.
  • My encouraging underclassmen: (Sophomores) Tabitha Peters, James Emerian, Caleb Eldridge, Georgia Karlson, Kyleigh Baca, Jacob Christensen, Blake Bay, and so many more.
    • I love you all. Thank you for all the kindness you have shown me. I hope you know how fond my heart is towards all of you. You’re my favorites, I treasure every interaction we have had whether in passing or in classes. I will be praying for you as you guys become the upperclassmen on campus.
  • My fellow upperclassmen: (Juniors and Seniors) Natalie Sullivan, Grace Mynderup, Tiffany Ens, Aribella Dimmer, Ruby Baker, Kenzie Sue, Mallory Loeffler
    • Thank you, you have made my time here so incredibly special. God has big plans for you and I cannot wait to see how you grow. I will always be rooting for you, and always, only, a phone call away!


I also want to thank God for the gift of writing He gave me as well as all these new friends.

I am grateful for my time on the team and am excited to use my newfound time management and patience and writing in college! Love you all, and never hesitate to reach out if you ever need anything! I look forward to seeing how you all grow. You are my Philippians 1:3 people, (“I thank my God every time I remember you,”) you hold a dear place in my heart. 

I will continue to trust in Him alone, and follow where He leads, and I pray you do too.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future,” (Jeremiah 29:11).


Later Skaters, 

Chloe McDonald


For more senior columns, read Senior Reflection: Cole Blanchfield , or Senior Reflection: Meilani Gilmore Young

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About the Contributors
Chloe McDonald
Chloe McDonald, Editor
First-year journalist Chloe McDonald, ‘24, is excited to begin her writing journey with The Feather Online. Chloe values teamwork and helping the campus stay informed. Chloe enjoys art of all mediums and serving her school through leadership class, with all glory to God. In her free time, she can often be found painting, lifeguarding, or walking her dog.
Benson Elbert
Benson Elbert, Photojournalist
Benson Elbert, ‘26 is an aspiring first year photojournalist for The Feather. Elbert aspires to improve his writing and photography skills with help from the team. He has worked in his family's breakfast restaurant, Batter Up Pancakes,  since he was a kid. Elbert has also led the campus through the leadership class since his freshman year, hoping to continue to lead till senior year. After high school he aspires to be a computer programmer and design videogames.
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    Delaney MeyersMay 20, 2024 at 1:39 pm

    Yes Chloe!!!! I am so proud of you and how far you have come. I’m so grateful to have gotten to work with you this year!