For the past few weeks, the Cherry Tree staff has been sitting in the lobby of Ivory Tower taking senior portraits. While snapping photos, they are also spreading the word – it’s not uncommon for students to wonder what the Cherry Tree even is.
Many students around campus were unaware that GW has a yearbook at all, but senior Lauren Moreno, the Cherry Tree’s editor in chief, said the yearbook staff has been doing their best this semester to advertise and get out the word about the yearbook.
“We had two ads in The Hatchet, a Facebook group which most of the senior class was invited to, an e-mail to the senior listserv, an ad in GWeekly and lots of flyers around campus to inform students about the yearbook and senior portraits,” she said.
While the Cherry Tree staff has been trying to promote their product, Moreno said that she has also been instituting some changes from past years, when the yearbook stayed a little under the radar.
“Our goal as a staff is to get as many people as possible aware of the yearbook,” she said. “In the past, the yearbook has been aimed mostly toward seniors, but we are doing our best to increase awareness for the underclassmen, as well.”
The yearbook covers all four years of college and includes photos of sports teams, student organizations and of course the senior portraits. The portraits were taken from Oct. 30 until last Friday. Moreno said there will also be another stint for pictures in the spring.
“As far as the senior portraits are concerned, there is a $15 sitting fee to ensure each senior gets a spot in the yearbook,” Moreno said.
After the photographs are taken, proofs are sent to the seniors’ homes along with information about different packages available for ordering, that range from $80 and up. Moreno said that during the two-week period that the yearbook staff was in Ivory Tower taking portraits, over 300 seniors came to get their pictures taken.
“We feel as if the awareness and popularity of the yearbook is growing,” Moreno said. “There was a good turn-out this year, and we hope to keep increasing awareness in the future.”
For seniors, the yearbook is free. For all other students, yearbooks cost $65. The yearbook is about 420 pages long and also includes senior commencement and senior portraits. The yearbook is sent off to publishers in the summer, and students receive their yearbooks the following November.
“It takes time for the publishers to compile 420-pages worth of pictures,” Moreno said. “Once it is sent to our publishers, it takes them two to three months to get the whole yearbook together.”
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