Expectations of being an extrovert


julia kuhn, in depth editor

Imagine standing up in front of a crowd of over 2,000 students and teachers and giving a speech. To most people, this sounds like a nightmare. To Jenni Gorey, this is no big deal because Jenni is an extrovert.

Gorey, senior, is one of the football student section leaders this year, and spoke at the back to school assembly in front of the entire student body about the changes to the student section. As a student section leader, Gorey must be loud and outgoing, two things that she says come naturally to her.

“For sure I fit the description of an extrovert,” Gorey said. “At work, I love asking people how their day was and having conversations with customers. I’ve worked at Jewel, My Snow Spoon, and now I’m a waitress at the Hawthorn Woods Country Club, so they’re all jobs where I can talk to people I don’t know.”

Although her outgoing personality is an asset at work, the stereotypes that come with being an extrovert can get Gorey into trouble at school.

“There is a misconception that if someone is loud, it means they are a class clown. The loudest person always gets the blame,” Gorey said. “It happens all the time to me in class. One time I was sleeping in class and another kid was talking but the teacher still yelled out ‘Jenni!’ because she assumed I was talking. Talking in class is a problem for me. I feel like I always need to be in contact with people. I don’t need a lot of alone time.”

Talking in class in not always a problem, though. Teachers reward students who talk a lot in class with graded participation and group projects, assignments that naturally benefit extroverts.

“I guess extroverts do have an advantage with group projects and graded participation. I feel bad for the kids that lose points because they’re quieter. I kind of wish it wasn’t as big of a part of school,” Gorey said. “I’m usually the loudest person in the room, but I still listen and look around and I feel for the kids who may struggle with presentations.”

Although she sympathizes with those who struggle with presentations, Gorey herself has no problem with public speaking.

“I don’t have problems with public speaking. I don’t get nervous talking in front of other people,” Gorey said. “Talking at the assembly doesn’t make me nervous, but I do have to plan out what I’m going to say because my problem is that I start talking and don’t know where I’m going with it.”

Gorey’s outgoing nature follows her outside of the classroom to her golf and softball teams. Even though golf is considered a quieter sport, that does not mean the players are.

“I play golf and softball, so one quiet and one loud sport. I’m usually still loud at golf, though, because at tournaments you get paired with up to three girls from different schools who you don’t know,” Gorey said. “It’s four hours of getting to know people, which is so fun. Talking to people is so interesting because everyone is so different.”

Classmates may know Gorey best for her outgoing personality, but people who know her better may also benefit from her compassion.

“I love talking to people that are shy and helping them come out more. People who are loud are normally seen as selfish, but I love helping my friends and family figure out problems,” Gorey said. “I like being the loud person but, at the end of the day, I’d rather be a friend for someone than the life of the party.”

jenni upload