Written by Killian Lynch
When she was younger, Ruby Van Dyk swore she would be the president of the United States. Surrounded by politics, and raised in a home that valued service and education above all else, it’s no shock. Unlike most of us that make that empty promise, however, I wouldn’t be surprised to see her follow through. So many years later, our Editor in Chief isn’t sure she has the ego for that job. However, she has managed to lead in every other aspect imaginable. Ruby Van Dyk has not only founded and continuously ran The Advocate in her time at the high school, but she’s served as School Board Representative, she’s founded the Young Feminists Club with Pacific, and remained one of the kindest and strongest people I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing.
Sadly, the time of our beloved Editor in Chief at the high school is coming to a racing and abrupt end with graduation. We are of course excited to see the things she will move onto, conquering Franklin & Marshall in the fall and then eventually the world. We are also remorsed to see such a presence leave the halls.
Ruby Van Dyk is perhaps the most tenacious person to walk the planet. Whether or not you agree with her, you will certainly respect her. This tiger like quality in her, that emphasizes hard work and equal treatment of all people, has inspired many including myself to fight harder for the things we want. I am not alone in this. She has inspired a new generation of Vikings, in a way she never intended. These are people with ambition and courage, and an unmatched humanity at their core. Ruby attributes any semblance of these traits to the way she was raised. Her home was filled with worldly perspectives, and her parents were constantly encouraging her to come up with the solutions to her childhood complaints.
We should all be grateful that this is the case, otherwise, this year’s Mr. Viking wouldn’t have been so stunning, the students wouldn’t have “balled” quite as hard at Senioritis v. Arthritis, and I have no doubt the school atmosphere would be different for the worse.
I intended this to be a gripping and broad profile about a lovely personality, but I find this impossible to do without talking about how she’s affected me, and how her leaving will affect me personally. That’s to say, very much. My first interactions with Ruby took place at our very progressive Montessori preschool. However, it took a few years, approximately till middle school before I truly got to know the side of Ruby I’ve come to adore so much. It was from their that she took me under her wing. She has always been so eager to give people a voice, and I luckily had the chance to benefit from that. It wasn’t until I started spending time with Ruby that the desire I had to change the world or inform the masses had any outlet. She has continued to make opportunities for me, through our running of The Advocate and Young Feminists, that will affect me for a lifetime. All of this was managed while she was a caring and understanding friend. I have never witnessed Ruby Van Dyk deny any soul one of her iconic toothy grins. She has rarely passed judgment on anyone she hasn’t made an effort to know.
This is why we are so sad to see her go. I am not sure who will take her place. Who will fill this school with the brightness, levity, and ferocity that she has managed to do in the last four years, is unknown. I know not only our student body will feel the change, but our staff and faculty as well. She’d be mortified by my saying so, and she probably is, but it is all of our jobs to keep that energy going, and I feel it is my job to make her proud. I have no doubt that moving on from the school and the paper, she will make us proud.
Ruby Van Dyk