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Memories from the MAD Academy

As we watch our seniors graduate and move on to bright futures, the MAD Academy class of 2024 reflects on their past four years at Santa Barbara High. I got the chance to speak to three seniors, Ryan Sharkey, Malcom Tircuit, and Persephone Gallegos, about how their opportunity to be in MAD has impacted their time here. When asked why they first joined MAD, they all mentioned how they were already into digital art and film, but credited their friends who had encouraged them to try it.

“I actually joined MAD junior year, but I really wanted to. I saw how big of a community it was and I had a lot of friends in it,” recalled Gallegos.

We talked about their favorite projects from the past years, which ones stood out to them. 

“It was a group project, a short film [Malcom Tircuit and I] did together.” Said Sharkey. Gallegos also brought up the music videos they had created in their junior year. 

Both Malcom and Ryan plan on pursuing filmmaking in college and after, while Persephone is considering digital marketing, although they all agree that MAD has helped nurture their interest in multimedia art. 

“MAD has definitely benefited me during high school. I feel like I see things from a broader perspective,” Gallegos continued.

Looking back on achievements and memories, they wanted to highlight Dee’s class, making music videos and all of the projects they worked on that nurtured their creative talents. I asked if they had any advice to give to incoming students thinking of joining MAD.

“If you think you are too good to do a project, why are you in the class? Just put your all in and it’s going to turn out good,” Sharkey said. Truit added, “Be creative, and if you have an idea you think is good, voice it.” 

Gallegos suggested, “Just really don’t overthink it. It’s a lot simpler than it seems.”

Although the MAD class of 2024 will be greatly missed, their time here is forever cemented in the incredible works of art they are leaving behind

[MAD seniors working together Image credit: Avalon Mcelroy]


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