Creating a community one bumper sticker at a time

By covering their cars with unique bumper stickers and decorations, students create a sense of community.


Rachel Schewe

Super bass…Jamming out to a Nicki Minaj song, junior Ava Saydam shows off her “Barbs On Board” bumper sticker. “Barb” is a term used to describe a Nicki Minaj fan.

To construct a representation of their personality and values, teens decorate their cars.
Students stray from the traditional “student driver” and stick figure family bumper stickers in favor of unique decorations.
In the past, the notorious “please be patient, student driver” bumper sticker could frequently be seen on the bumper of new drivers.
However, today’s teens have taken to displaying bumper stickers more indicative of their personality.
“I personally like when [bumper stickers] represent the person who drives the car because then you can get a little insight on them,” senior Jamie Alderfer said.
Memorable bumper stickers bearing slogans such as “I break for Mr. Worldwide” and “Tasty Jawn” can be seen throughout the high school parking lot.
According to junior Levi Lewis, his “Tasty Jawn” and “Tootsie Jawn” bumper stickers add interest to his otherwise “boring” car.
“I literally drive a minivan so you have to make it fun,” Lewis said. “If you drive a minivan you have to make it fun or else it’s boring. I don’t want to be a boring person.”
Junior Joey Beck uses bumper stickers to reflect his value system.
According to Beck, the “Just Be Nice” sticker on the back of his car is “kind of my motto.”
“[My bumper sticker] shows that I’m an accepting person and at the end of the day, even if I might not agree with someone, I’m going to choose kindness,” Beck said.
According to Beck, bumper stickers and car decorations can “bring [people] together as a community” because they are relatable. “You can relate to [bumper stickers],” Beck said. “You can relate to other people in a way.”
Senior Oisin Carolan advises students to “be original” with their car decoration choices as bumper stickers can say a lot about a person.
“There’s definitely a lot of bumper stickers that can be reflective of a person,” Carolan said. “I see bumper stickers on the back of people’s cars all the time and I make assumptions about the type of person that’s in that car.”
Junior Ava Saydam chose bumper stickers reflective of her personality and interests in pop culture. Saydam has a variety of bumper stickers displayed on her car including a “Barbs On Board” magnet.