Coordinating AP Assassination – Why It’s not worth it


When I was first notified by last year’s coordinators that I got the job I was ecstatic. Every student at Staples knows about the excitement of AP Assassination, the stakeouts, the betrayal, the heartbreak, the money. And, now I’d be in the center of all of it; I would run the game, and automatically get a cut of the money — my friend and I were made the 2016 AP Assassination coordinators. Nothing could beat that deal.

I couldn’t have been more wrong.

I learned quickly that my role as “coordinator” was much more like a babysitting position on hardcore steroids. It was plain to see that when a bunch of teenagers come together to compete for close to $3,000, they are nothing more than children.

Participants constantly lie, cheat, and throw temper tantrums when they have been eliminated. And in the ocean of untruths and deceit, there I am trying to fish out the reality. It’s not worth it.

As a coordinator I made seven and a half percent of the total pool of just over $3,400, which is roughly $255. And of course, I know it’s a lot of money, but when you do the math on how many hours were spent trying to track down contestants to get their entry fee cash, set up spreadsheets for targets and assassins, keep track of who has been eliminated and who is left, as well as settle disputes — It doesn’t end up being much more than minimum wage. Additionally, once you factor in all the enemies you make for making controversial decisions on who is eliminated, it definitely doesn’t seem like a good time investment.

Not to mention, the repercussions for being the spokesperson for the most widely hated tradition in Staples history. The school district, parents, and most businesses in town hate it so much that years ago The New York Times wrote a feature piece on AP Assassination at Staples. My co-coordinator and I have received multiple calls from parents, managers, and business owners around town informing us of how competitors have disrupted their lives. The worst part being that all of these incidents have blatantly been addressed in a several page rule document shown to every contestant.

Now I’m not trying to get AP Assassination disbanded, or discourage kids from participating, it’s a tradition and I believe it should be honored. I just think it’s time some maturity is brought to the game, and even more so I think the coordinators for next year need to be stricter than I have been.

And to whoever messages me next year asking for this position — I’m so sorry.