by Jenna Hathaway
The Prefect-in-Training program, as it name suggests, is a selection process designed to choose Reserve Prefects in Ravenclaw. So yes, it technically should be called Reserve-Prefect-in-Training, but according to Rhi, that makes for a less appealing acronym ;) The PiT is usually conducted by the current Head Prefect. Coincidentally, at the time of writing this article, I have just finished running my first PiT ever, and I must say it isn’t an easy job at all.
But at the same time, it’s also pretty fun. No, not the torturing the candidates bit, but how I could get to know them more and also end up with a pile of activity ideas that are more than enough to supply our house with things to do for the next year! And it’s really fun seeing how creative everyone could be. I almost felt like a mother bird preparing her little kids to fly away on their own from the nest. I have no doubt that some of the Reserve Prefects chosen from the most recent batch of the program will grow and become Prefects and maybe even Head Students and Professors someday. There’s a lot of potential in each and every one of them, and the PiT really helped in polishing those skills.
The PiT program itself doesn’t have a fixed time span or even structure. It has changed throughout the years and each PiT will be different from the last one, whether the difference itself is big or small. But it keeps evolving depending on many things: the person/people who run them, the amount of participants, the time constraints, and various other considerations. Before I started conducting the 2011 PiT, I asked Cassie and Alexia to send me copies of old PiT e-mails and I can attest to the fact that it’s never completely the same.
I hardly remember my own PiT myself, until Cassie sent a copy of the tasks for me. Back then it was way more rigorous and involved. Just seeing the first task being a list of questions as long as an MS Word page, I do wonder how I managed to finish all of them and get chosen as a Reserve Prefect myself. Needless to say, the PiT runner at the time, Maya Winters, was one of the eviler PiT conductors! Some of the tasks’ basic ideas though are always the same, because the qualities and skills we look for in future Prefects don’t differ that much now from then.
I’m afraid I couldn’t divulge all the juicy details of the most recent PiT program, but I can tell you it lasted a month and each week I gave the participants up to two tasks to be finished in a timely manner. Some of the qualities they were judged for are: personality, good judgment, creativity, the ability to work as part of a team, knowledge of the rules, and responsibility. All qualities important for future Prefects. So the tasks I gave them more or less reflected that. They were also judged for their punctuality in turning the tasks in, of course. Then I had to make a full review of each task and each PiT candidate and in the end, an overall conclusion and recommendation to the Head of House and Deputy Head, namely Rhi and Cassie.
We had 8 participants in this last PiT, although unfortunately two had to drop out in the middle of it, so we had a nice number of people to pick from. At the end, because we only had one Reserve Prefect remaining left, we decided to pick three additional Reserves and they are the ones that you all are familiar with by now, having been announced shortly afterwards. As a whole, PiT has been a really fun experience for me, both when I participated in it and when I ran it. Of course, most people would think I’m crazy for saying this, but let me just assure you that PiT isn’t that scary. It’s the necessary first step if you ever want to become a Prefect and give a lot of contribution to your house. And well, I can honestly say that being a Prefect is even more fun. (And no, it’s not because you can take points from those pesky Hufflepuffs!)
Leah Samson/Faye Laramie
Sir Psycho Flea
Hari [Granger] O’Duibhleargain
Tinuvie [Undomiel] Levante