Senior Spotlight on Rachel Roncka


By Emma Lu (I) and Sanjana Singh (I)

When I first heard of Rachel Roncka’s existence in sixie year, it was because a teacher had apparently mistaken us for one another, as we were both Asian girls with glasses, I guess. Now after years of knowing Rachel, I doubt that anyone wouldn’t be able to recognize her for the unique, astute, driven individual she is.

I never expected to bond over virtual AP Latin or Facing History as juniors, but after months of eating, laughing and marching together, I can say that Rachel brings a joyful energy that’s been very much needed in our senior year. 

Being in Rachel’s Latin V class had been nothing short of a blast. In a room of only a couple women, we had to stick together. Rachel consistently brought a feminist perspective to Catullus’s boyish rants and always amazed us all with her translation abilities. From the flaming diss track — oops, I mean “poem” — she wrote, to the heartwarming farewell draw-my-life, that class provided proof of her diligence, even when everyone else was struggling with crippling senioritis.

While working with Rachel as a Topol Fellow, I can honestly say that she is one of the most thoughtful and passionate individuals I’ve met. Rachel never fails to step up, both to lead and to help others. Whether it’s designing T-shirts for Human Rights Day, making posters on Canva about threats to our democracy or mobilizing students to fight for reproductive justice, Rachel is a vital part of our team, and it truly wouldn’t function without her.

Her activism doesn’t just stop there, though. As co-captain of BLS Mock Trial, co-president of the Ladies’ Collective and a staff writer for the Argo, Rachel channels her passion into every facet of her work. Anyone who has had the pleasure of working with her cannot help but be inspired by her ability to organize initiatives and educate the student body. From leading the effort to provide free sanitary products in the restrooms, to adorning the hallways with vital posters on personal safety, Rachel has undoubtedly changed our community for the better.

Most of all, Rachel never fails to be a great friend. She always listens to the various, trivial plights we rant about during lunch (bringing a voice of reason to the chaos), and her endless witty remarks constantly make us cackle in our “uberwomenschen” group chat. Her artistry, too, is impressive as she brings creativity to hand-crafted protest signs or plays anything from Beethoven to Taylor Swift on the piano. 

Rachel is one of the most authentic individuals you’ll ever meet, unabashed in her passions and beliefs, and she inspires those around her to do the same. Whether through her unparalleled problem-solving mindset or caring inclusion of others, Rachel brings her head and heart to every space she is in. 

Rachel, we have no doubt that you will excel in the Mouth of the Dart next year… so long as you can avoid the pesky insects and a bug-bite induced trip to the emergency room. 

Love you forever!