Bees are vital to how the world functions, and their population is slowly declining.
Graphic By Harrison Linden
FEBRUARY 18, 2020. VOLUME 10. ISSUE 4.
STAMPEDE EDITORIAL BOARD
From the day we are born we develop habits. It can be anything from biting your nails to avoiding eye contact. We all have bad habits, but where are the good habits?
As students, you would think that there is no time to work out or meditate every day, but that is not the only good habit you can have. As students of Metea, we should all live the Metea L.I.F.E. It is easy to say that you are a nice person, but how often does that occur?
Everyone is relatively nice, but why not just be nice all the time? Being nice takes no effort, but it seems to be a chore for some people. Something as simple as holding the door for the person behind you, or even saying thank you when someone says bless you.
It is possible that people are not as happy or nice because of the way they are treated. That will not solve any problems though. As a community, we are so close-minded and angry because of how others treat us.
Why not hold the door for the person behind you, or pay for the person's order behind you in the drive-thru line? You can make someone's day just by something as small as that.
Not everyone will pick up on these good habits though. Like all habits, you have to get used to them, like a routine.
Some may say that you develop good habits just like you develop bad ones by repeating them, but why is that? Biting your nails when you are nervous, shaking when you are embarrassed seems reasonable. Opening the door for someone behind you seems like the right thing to do, but for some reason, that is not a habit for many people.
To develop good habits it seems like there needs to be a predetermined goal. Set a goal like to set a New Years resolution and stick to it. Make a plan to do everything you can to be a good person because you really will make someone’s day.
Students should pick up on good habits
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BUILDING BETTER HABITS 03
BLACK HISTORY MONTH 04
CAREER ELECTIVES 06
WARRIORS HOCKEY 08
SPECIAL OLYMPICS 10
ON THE COVER
ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERNS 12
GIRL SCOUTS 16
FEMALE WRESTLERS 18
VOTING IMPORTANCE 20
TESTING CULTURE 21
STAR WARS 22
SOCIAL MEDIA EDITOR
PUBLIC AFFAIRS EDITOR
THE SCORE EDITOR
THE SCORE REPORTERS
MARCO RIVERO LUNA
Celebrate the accomplishments and achievements of the black people that helped build the foundations of this country. Graphic by Harrison Linden .
Metea is such a diverse school, with an amazing group of students. With our principal Dr. Darrell Echols winning African American Leader of the Year in 2018, Metea is doing great things.
Metea offers the opportunity for students to express themselves in multiple ways, through clubs and after school activities. Clubs such as Black Student Alliance, Asian American Club, and Indian Student Alliance give students an opportunity to bond with people that share similar cultural views as them, in a space where they will feel safe to express themselves.
Like other clubs and sports, there has to be unity, and Metea gives students equal opportunity to be who they are.
The entire month of February celebrates Black history. The collaboration center was a safe place to talk about being a student of color in Metea on Feb.4. Also students had a chance to see their peers perform poems, art, and stories in the Black Box Feb.11, which was hosted by English teacher Robyn West.
Both events gave all students the opportunity to share their experiences in and out of school and how being a person of color affects them on a daily basis.
“Being black means that I’m constantly watching out for myself, because I never know what could happen to me,” junior Ashlee Harris said.
There are many reasons why being a person of color can be scary, with police brutality still happening, but there should be no reason for them to be terrified.
In a city like Naperville is fairly safe, there is no high crime rate, which should make most people feel comfortable, but sometimes that is not the case.
“Movies and books in the last couple years have shown what it is to be black. Queen and Slim emphasized police brutality, The blood of Emmett Till showed how the history of African Americans is still being uncovered, and there are still stories that need to be told,” senior Virgil Steward said.
Black History Month is not the only time African American history should be celebrated.
Everyone should be celebrated and there should be no division in school, but there is. There are so many different kinds of students, it is not just black and white students. Metea has students from so many different places in the world.
Black History Month creates an opportunity for students of different cultures and backgrounds to embrace the meaning of their heritage and history.
Metea students come from so many different backgrounds, and they are the reason that this is such a bright community.
STUDENTS CELEBRATE BLACK HISTORY MONTH THROUGHOUT METEA
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New electives expose students to realistic career opportunities
Sophomore Maggie Owen meets with her counselor, Tammy Kurth , to discuss elective options for her junior year. Photo by Olivia Gaziano.
Students receive packets detailing the available courses for the upcoming school year. Photo by Noelle Pryor.
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Each year, freshmen, sophomores, and juniors choose what classes they would like to take next year. Every year brings new options and alternatives to classes that students had not had before. Currently, students have chosen electives and put them into Home Access Center for the upcoming school year.
“I really think that the main idea I have for my high school students is that they spend the time in high school to fully explore anything that they are interested in to see what sparks interest for the future,” counselor Nicole Liska said.
There are four core classes for the students to choose from. They also get to choose between a language, a Fine Arts class, and a variety of other electives. Once students enter sophomore year, they have more options within specific programs, such as the business department and technology and engineering programs. There are unique classes such as video game design or automotive mechanics that allow students to get previews of multiple career options before committing to them in college, trade schools, or any other path along the way.
Senior Jenna Schultz is looking to go into business and communications, so she has taken business classes to be introduced with what she wants to do in the future. In college, there are students that change classes or their intended major because it is not what they expected. Metea has classes such as accounting, marketing, or management. This helps students get an intro of how specific fields and subjects work.
“I’m looking to go into business so I've taken classes like marketing and virtual enterprises international. I think of this as a chance to venture and see what you specifically like before it actually starts costing you money in college,"
Some students have more of an advantage than others regarding room in their schedule. For example, students that take band or orchestra or even a language, have a harder time creating space for those classes because it takes up one or more class periods in their schedule.
“I encourage students that have a situation where their schedule is tight to sit down with their school counselor and look at different options,” Liska said. “There are so many other ways to explore like internships or different clubs and organizations.”
For students that have the flexibility to choose more electives, there can be a problem of finding the best plan. Some students choose classes to impress colleges, while other students choose them to explore their interests and creativity. The balance between the two is something that is hard for some because of outside pressures or not being able to plan it out in the best way.
“Take classes that go along with a passion or something you want to learn more about,” senior Aminah Hussain said. “I know a lot of people want to take classes for fun and stress relief but also keep in mind that you want to choose something that will help build your future from here on out.”
Metea provides resources to help students that are struggling to map out their next year. Firstly, there are guidance counselors that specialize in helping students make the best decisions they can. Secondly, students have current and past teachers who know how the students are in class and can give good insight to how they should progress. Lastly, students should keep in mind that their schedule does not have to look like everyone else's because of the variety of classes that come with new curriculum each year.
When students hear the words “state champion”, minds instantly go towards Metea and Waubonsie’s reputable hockey team. The Warriors took home the Blackhawk Cup winning 4-3 against Glenbard in double overtime last year. It is a well-known fact that history repeats itself, and the hockey team wants nothing but to relive that excitement this year. Defending the state championship will not be an easy task. However, after analyzing their tactics last year, the team is ready to take home the cup for the second year in a row.
THE CLUTCH WIN
The Warriors experienced a dreaded fall at the United Center in 2018, finishing second at the Blackhawk Cup. The feeling of being so close but not taking the win is one that the boys did not want to experience a second time. Last year, the team used this as motivation to win what they missed.
The team had something that the other teams do not, namely the motivation to not fall short. In fear of missing the win a second time in a row, the team worked harder than ever. This brought them to work harder than ever before and bring home the state championship for the Warriors.
SKATING INTO A DIFFERENT TEMPERATURE
Defending the state title is not as simple as following the techniques of last year. New teammates make this hockey season different from 2019. They must take this factor into account to differ their approach in order to end the season with a victory.
“The biggest difference is we have lots of sophomores on the team this year when last year was just juniors and seniors,” head coach Jeremy Dombro said. “It’s been a season filled with getting the new players to realize what we’re playing for."
For the new teammates, they did not experience the same preparation for state as last year. The season so far has helped them discover what is expected of them. It has also taught them just how much of a commitment to the team it takes to finish triumphantly.
“All the new players have been able to adapt and get better at the game,” senior Zach Pearce said.
The underclassmen on the varsity team have benefited from the guidance of the upperclassmen through positive mentorship. The players on last year’s team showed them new skills to utilize in their preparations for the state final.
EYE ON THE PRIZE
The Warriors’ main goal for this year is to not lose their momentum. Due to 2019’s highly successful season, the players will not settle for any less than a victory. Last year showed them that they are very capable of winning it all, but sustaining that success will be a challenge.
“We all go to practice every day ready for another state title,” Howard said. “We have had some roadblocks this year with injuries and sickness, but we have overcome them and have become better from it.”
The adversities they have faced in regards to injuries are expected in such a high contact sport. However, the boys do not let this slow down their preparations. They take the precautions needed to keep themselves healthy from illness and safe from injury so they can give it their all during practices and games.
“If each individual keeps working on themselves we will have no problem,” Pearce said when referring to their preparations for the upcoming playoffs.
The hockey team has a lot riding on them for the playoff games. The end goal is obvious: defend the state title and bring home another trophy. With their current standings this season, there is hope for that goal to become a reality.
SECURING THE PERIMETER
It is no secret that the players on the Warriors’ hockey team are talented. This is reflected in the success they have experienced so far this year. They have won multiple games and are ranked third in the Illinois West Division.
“Our biggest highlight so far was the Carillon Cup,” Dombro said. “We won against Naperville Central in the semi-finals, and then we played Neuqua in the finals, which we won in overtime.”
This is just one example of the Warriors dominating the ice rink. They have proven on multiple accounts that they are a force to be reckoned with. Even through individual success, they reign champions as a team.
“You can’t focus on personal goals until it’s all said and done,” Pearce said. “As of now, nothing matters to me other than winning the league and state with my team.”
The largest factor that makes the Warriors so highly successful is their bond together. They support one another and want to witness each other’s achievements. This quality combined with hard work and top-notch leadership is what will bring the team to the state title. With these vital components, the Warriors look to solidify their chances to climb up on top during the post-season.
Waubonsie-Metea is hopeful that they will follow the team to a second state victory but will be proud of the boys’ success nonetheless.
Warriors’ hockey team: The road to defending the state title
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“Everyone on the team was hungry for revenge to win state,” senior goalie Justin Howard said. “We all sat down and talked about how hard it was losing and how we never wanted to experience it again”.
Senior Justin Howard takes a knee during a time out. Photo by Olivia Gaziano .
Warriors work together to make a goal during their game. Photo by Olivia Gaziano.
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The Special Olympics program been a great experience for all the students involved, as well as the community. Photo by Jordan Dulling
There often comes a time where one seeks to find their niche. They become passionate about their ideology, until when the door slams shut on their face; that door can either remain glued to the latch or be opened by a kind fellow.
For the Special Olympics program, the door has no latch.
"Everyone here is so kind and welcoming," senior Heidi Gabriel said.
Special Olympics continues to create a social impact on disabilities since 1968. Eunice Kennedy Shriver is the founder of Camp Shriver. Throughout the developments of Camp Shriver, she propelled to one philosophy: transform the lives of those who have special needs and the negative perceptions that appeared. As the clock ticks forward, what was once a backyard event became a nation-wide movement.
In the summer of July 20, 1968, Chicago Special Olympics hosted its first International Special Olympics game at Soldier Field. The games included 200 events.
Given the highlights of Special Olympics over the years, many strides come from the belief to achieve a change for inclusivity. One of them is shined through the Mustang athletes in the traditional and Unified teams.
"It is important it is for our students and athletes to have their place to have an outlet," Special Olympics Coordinator for District 204 Kim Pehlke said. "They should be able to feel ownership of their team."
The Special Olympics program started alongside the opening of the school. Pehlke later took the job as a coach for the program.
"Watching the athletes' faces when they realize they've succeeded and forming those true friendships that they get to have is very special," Pehlke said. "It's so rewarding for me to watch our athletes just make the smallest strides. I feel like I get more out of it."
Unified teams include general education and special needs athletes. Traditional teams are for athletes with disabilities without general education players.
“Seeing my friends is what makes Special Olympics special,” traditional athlete Ashley Connely said.
Regardless of the different teams, athletes and volunteers connect with each other on and off the court.
“The community and the friendships that we all make is a different type of feeling," Gabriel said.
Special Olympics is no doubt the peak of many athletes' schedules. What is valuable are the abstract ideas they learn that help them formulate practices of inclusion and optimism.
"I learned how to include people. Everyone should have an equal shot," senior Tom Maccab said. "Don't judge them for what they look like. We should look into [special needs kids'] personality instead."
Throughout their past basketball season, the athletes gained monumental insight in developing character and perseverance.
“I like playing the sport the most," Conley said. “I also learned how to be a team player.”
Within the winning strides, the program has grown to an immense amount of success. The school was recognized as a National Unified Champion School this past September.
"Our recognition as a Unified Champion School has been a mind shift," Pehlke said. "We've always been focused on Special Olympics, and now we are looking at it more from that."
The main piece is the youth engagement and leadership within the school. Specialty events such as Pack the Place gives students a stronger sense of community. In the next coming years, the team will strive to make fellow Mustangs identify the characteristics they exude.
“Special Olympics makes me feel brave,” traditional athlete Ben Borden said.
Special Olympics poses for the camera during a game. Photo By Leland Pan.
SPECIAL OLYMPICS OPENS UP A DOOR THAT IS LONG OVERDUE
As temperatures rise, students are becoming increasingly concerned about the health of the planet. Issues such as Agricultural decline, climate change, and less pollinators are all on the minds of Metea students.
The number of bees in this world is critically low. There is no way to sugarcoat it. If farming practices do not change soon the bee could see itself brought close to extinction. The loss of such a small yet important species would cause us to lose most of Earth’s flora, and affect the amount of food available to all living things. Despite this, the American population has focused on another animal to save: sea turtles. It has become more of a trend than an action to talk about saving these marine animals. And yet, the sea turtle issue has not changed thanks to these efforts. A single video of a straw getting stuck in a turtle's nose became a spark, even though this is the least of the animals concerns. Plastic bags, which they often mistake as jellyfish, are a larger issue. A small, helpless insect that provides $290 billion dollars across the world should be more important than a creature that simply reduces the amount of jellyfish in our seas.
The worst part is that this is not anything new. Bees have been declining in numbers since the late 1990s. The trouble does not stop there. The commercial honey bee population has decreased by forty percent in the US since 2006, bringing the amount of honey produced to an all-time low. The honey bee is not the only member of the fuzzy flying insect family that is in danger. The US has placed the rusty patched bumble bee on the endangered list as of Feb.10 2017. That makes eight bees that are now in peril.
Though there is not much that can done as an individual, there is something the school can do. Planting pollinator plants outside the school and encouraging others to understand and respect our fuzzy friends would make an impact. It also helps to advertise how close humans are to the extreme dangers of climate change. Avoiding pesticides and signing petitions can help improve the number of winged friends buzzing in the gardens. Organizations such as SOS Bees help to educate people about their importance and what humans can do to help.
It is important to discuss the possibility of extinction or mass eradication among all animals, however, the obsession about protecting more cute animals has caused many species to be left out of the conversation. Multiple experts in the world of ecology and biology have spoken about the problem that certain species can create due to them taking all the attention from others. Yes, it is important to save the turtles, but it is just as important to consider the other species currently facing possible extinction.
Bees are declining, so why are people more concerned about turtles?
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Marco RIVERA and Madi LUMSDEN
Spotlight and Graphics
Climate change is a topic that is discussed and debated all over the world. Whether it is for adults or youth, the topic is very important for the sustaining of our world today.
In recent years, climate change has become a very prevalent topic among students. Students are the next generation, and they will have to run the world next. It is important that they know why and how the climate is changing in order to help the planet in the future.
“It’s one of those things, especially for people of your generation, since you’re going to see this planet be a completely different planet,” environmental science teacher Kiel Smith said.
Currently, climate change is happening quickly, but there are not many obvious changes in the planet’s geography. Because there are not that many differences in our planet everyday, many people pretend that climate change is absent. Several leaders of our world believe that climate change is not an issue, and they choose to ignore it. However, there are signs that indicate that our climate will rapidly change within the next few years.
The largest change measured is the change in carbon dioxide levels in our atmosphere. Those levels have almost doubled, since 1950. This has caused sea levels to rise and icebergs in the North and South Poles to melt.
“If you look at the general temperature trend on the planet, we’ve seen over the last fifteen years, the warmest years years recorded,” Smith said. “We can see glaciers in Greenland and even in Glacier National Park that are retreating, larger wildfires in Australia, and a lot of big picture things that are starting to appear.”
Recently, several young people have started advocating for the planet. The most well known of them is Greta Thunberg, who is a seventeen year old girl from Sweden who has been recognized for her speeches and advocacy for the climate. Thunberg spoke at the United Nations, as well as at many other international meetings in order to spread awareness about what is happening to the climate. Her voice has encouraged many other young people to speak out about the climate as well.
Many schools, including Metea Valley, have taken part in trying to improve the environment. High schools have taken part in several youth advocacy organizations, where they spread information to benefit the planet. At Metea, the Eco club has put in several new policies in order to take a small step in the right direction.
“Food waste is actually one of the biggest contributors to climate change on the planet, so in the cafeteria, we have a food share table where students put unfinished food on the table, it all adds up,” Smith said.
Small actions by students will always be beneficial, especially since students are the next generation. Generation Z, will inherit the environmental conditions of the planet, and they will have to fix whatever problems arise. Students need to learn about the planet now, so that they know how to benefit the planet for the future.
"We don't want these things done by 2050, 2030, or even 2021. We want this done now."
Students are continuing to talk about climate issues, bringing facts to light in spite of their lack of voice. Graphic by Madi Lumsden
STUDENT ADVOCACY FOR CLIMATE CHANGE WILL SAVE THE PLANET
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girl scouts continue to serve their community in high school and beyond
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Girl Scouts are commonly thought of as elementary age girls. However, girls in middle and high school also participate in this program. Girl Scouts is an opportunity for these girls to do more than just participate in a club environment. They are able to volunteer in their communities and receive certain badges that demonstrate their accomplishments. Metea Valley has a few Girl Scouts and they all enjoy taking part in leading their communities. Mashal Jiwani is one such Girl Scout.
Are there any differences between being a girl scout as a high schooler versus as a middle schooler?
“Yeah, being a girl scout in high school is a lot different than in elementary/middle school. We are allowed to have more of a choice in what badges we earn and what projects we do. And also being an older girl scout means that you have more leadership opportunities. We help out the little Girl Scouts pretty often."
What are your favorite parts about being a girl scout?
“I love being able to come together with my friends and do something good for the community. It’s really great seeing how much we can do when we come together as a group. And I also like how we learn so many different life skills through the badges we earn.”
Do you get advanced roles/responsibilities as a girl scout by being in your late teens?
“Yeah, we have more freedom in choosing what badges we work on and what projects we do. And also we often help out the younger girl scouts. It is almost like moving up the ranks because if we’re here for longer, we get more opportunities and more promotions.”
Are there any good scholarship opportunities that you’ve witnessed or taken advantage of due to still being a girl scout?
“No, however, being a Girl Scout is very unique, and makes me stand out when applying to colleges or other programs. Since there are not that many high school Girl Scouts, our work in leadership and in the community makes us seem more involved compared to others.”
Have you gotten any bronze/silver/gold awards? What are they? Tell me about your badges.
“I have received the silver award...It’s an award I received as a cadette. My group did a project that was focused on helping children locally and globally… so we crocheted blankets and sent them to babies in Africa. To help the children locally we created cards and goody bags for children with cancer. And throughout this project we each did 50 hours of community service. We get badges by learning different skill-building activities and mastering them.”
How long have you been a girl scout?
"I've been a girl scout for about 4 years. Ever since I was little I loved helping out the community, and just getting work done for good"
FEBRUARY 18, 2020
Age is nothing but a number when it comes to Girl Scouts. Photo by Paige Friendlander
Girl Scout cookies are a common delicacy among many people, with 200 million boxes being sold every year . Photo by Noelle Pryor.
Juniors Ashley Xie and Ashliegh Aten during wrestling practice. Photo by Jessica Velazquez
FEMALE WRESTLERS ARE PINNING THEIR HOPES ON WINNING THE UPCOMING SEASON
While high school wrestling is predominantly competed by boys, the Metea roster this year has two girls who are competing on the mat. Ashley Xie and Ashliegh Aten have both been wrestling for a few years and are focused on improving personally and helping the Metea team.
“This is my best season so far,” junior Ashley Xie said. “My goal is to win, which sounds obvious, but I want to see myself grow and be successful.”
Xie has been wrestling for four years and got involved with the sport when a friend encouraged her to join. Junior Ashliegh Aten’s family is very connected to amateur style wrestling which was the influence for her to learn the sport. Both are still seeking their first victory in a regular-season match, but are seeing improvement from their practices and exhibition matches.
“This is one of my better seasons,” Aten said. “I have won a few matches, but it does not really count towards the team because they were exhibitions, so I don’t get points. At the same time, however, I did earn those wins. They were my wins, so I am proud of that.”
Both athletes have noticed more bonding among the team, which has been beneficial as the team is adjusting to a new coaching style. In addition, both varsity and junior varsity are learning the same techniques, which allows for consistency and continuity between the two levels.
“I feel like JV has gotten better because we were able to get the same coaching as the varsity team,” Xie said. “We all have the commitment and dedication to doing well, so I have seen us kind of improve as we train.”
The athletes are also hopeful for the rest of the season and their career in wrestling. Xie has made it clear that she hopes to win her matches as the season progresses. Aten has a similar goal.
“Next year my goal is to stay in the same weight class I am currently in, gain more muscle, and win some matches,” Aten said.
Despite being in a sport dominated by the boys, Aten and Xie are both holding their own and feel that the team treats them the same as everyone else. They said they are getting plenty of opportunities to prove themselves to their peers.
“Nobody has said anything bad towards the girls, the coaches are helping the girls more than last year, and I feel that they are interested in seeing everybody do their best which makes it a good environment to train and succeed.”
Ashley Xie and Ashliegh Aten have a face off. Photo by Jessica Velazquez
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MONTH #, 201#
The people's voice has become more important than ever. Graphic by Mishal Nizar.
In today’s political landscape, the people’s voice has become more important than ever, no matter how far left or right people lean. The current political climate relies on one thing: voters. However, more and more citizens are choosing not to participate in elections for various reasons. While circumstances may arise where someone may not be able to physically get to the ballot boxes, there are numerous reasons why the public may not feel compelled to vote.
“I think a lot of it is that people feel as though nothing is going to change,” Metea Government teacher Mike O’Neill said. “A lot of it is just voter apathy. I think a lot of people are just sick and tired of the way the government’s been behaving”
Three-fourths of the general American public believes that trust in the US government has been decreasing, according to a 2014 study from PEW Research Center. Sixty-four percent of the American public doesn’t trust their fellow Americans. This lack of any fundamental trust in the two parts of voting oftentimes leads to voter apathy, or a lack of care among voters. Voter apathy is widely credited as being the leading reason why people don’t go out and vote. In this case, voters need to recognize that the only way to enact any change is to go out and express that concern through voting. Having faith in a system that is currently going through a very rocky patch and has let down people in the past is certainly hard, but the nature of the system allows outside interference.
“I think a lot of people feel like they aren’t educated enough,” senior Arathi Patri said. “I know that’s how I’m feeling. Or they just don’t care.”
Other turn-offs can vary from having to wait in lines to the socioeconomic state of the area. Knowledgeability of candidates and policies is also a large turn-off for potential voters. Currently, the amount of political rhetoric in the media is large. In this case, the sheer amount of opinions and possible policies that are out there for every candidate is a turn-off for voters who may not want to research. The only real way to combat a lack of knowledge is to learn as much as possible. It may not sound fun, but voting with the right information is better than voting without any knowledge of the candidates.
The entire concept of democracy revolves around the representation of the people. Citizens have the right to have opinions represented in government. This is where the concept of primaries comes into play. On February 3rd, Iowa will be the first state to enter the primary process. Iowa decides its state’s candidates via a caucus, but the other states’ methods vary. In Illinois, the primary elections for both democrats and republicans are on March 17th. Websites like Ballotpedia have information about how to register.
“We have this idea of popular sovereignty in our government: that government is for the people by the people,” O’Neill said. “So I think in order for that principle of the constitution to work, people actually need to get out there and cast their ballot.”
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STANDARDIZED TESTS TAKE AN EMOTIONAL TOLL ON STUDENTS WITH NO REAL EDUCATIONAL BENEFITS
LAs students adapt a new testing culture, they have to face the many implications that come with it. Graphic by Harrison Linden.
The sound of pencil lead scratches against the scantrons. A nervous leg shakes under the desk, and fingernails tap furiously. The clock ticks with every second the red hand moves. This is a standardized test. There is nothing more terrifying than taking a test that determines one's success. At least, that is what everyone has been telling students since day one.
Tests have always been an integral part of the American education system. Tests determine whether the test taker has learned certain skills. While it should be easy for one who listens and understands the content of the lesson, that is far from the truth.
Standardized tests, like the SAT, are known for the lack of knowledge needed to get a high score. A person could be in all Honors and AP classes and understand everything. Not having the proper test-taking skills affects their chances of getting a high score. Standardized tests allow great test takers to show their skills. What about test anxiety?
Administrators require students to take the SAT at least once to graduate. Teachers tell students every year that they need to know exactly what is going on in their subjects to do well in their class. This holds some truth. In reality, if you can interpret and analyze a question, choose an answer, and not overthink, then you are golden. This can be applied to standardized tests as well, and this logic can give students a great deal of test anxiety.
While the test itself may be a breeze, the anxiety that comes with it does not make the process any easier. Because students are told that they must do well on a single exam in order to do well in the rest of their lives, the fear of failure and uncertainty of one’s future is heightened. Test anxiety can also lead to worsened health conditions, a decrease in self-confidence, and an increase in stress and pressure.
Tests may be good at deciding whether or not one understands specific content; however, they do not determine one’s success or their abilities as a whole. Many sections of the test have questions that do not really test the student's knowledge, instead it tests if a student can pick up on a pattern of questions. Receiving a score that is established as a “bad” score can really lower a person’s self-esteem. Though there is an option to retake a majority of these huge standardized tests, the negative emotional and social aspects that come with retaking it does not do one’s self-confidence justice.
Many students are also ranked against other students based on their scores. These rankings are believed to determine which colleges students can be accepted to, which could determine their future. However, many colleges just use standardized tests as a benchmark for how academically skilled a student is. It does not necessarily determine what kind of future a student will have.
Students that are juniors or seniors are consistently stressed about these tests, which also makes them focus less on their actual classes. Because classes are actually teaching students material that will be beneficial to them in the future, it is important that students focus on their classes and grades instead of meaningless tests.
Tests do not define students and it is important that students understand that.
From waiting in line to the White House: why politically informed voting is important
‘The Rise of Skywalker' continues the Star Wars franchise in an unsatisfying way
In a galaxy far far away, a couple of teenage girls went to see what was meant to be the final movie in the Star Wars sequel trilogy, and they were severely underwhelmed.
Watching “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”, it is clear that J.J. Abrams wanted to encapsulate much of the cinematic quality and techniques that were implemented in the original trilogy. The quippy one-liners, incredible special effects, and lovable characters easily resembled those of the earlier movies. Unfortunately, the similarities after that seemed almost second hand.
“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” was excellent in its ability to create action and a loose storyline, but it failed to develop the characters or explain many of the open-ended questions that were brought up throughout the movie. The previous trilogy created an attachment for the viewers. Many felt connected to the characters, therefore allowing them to better appreciate the storyline. The newest addition to the story, however, lacked that character development that is necessary to propel the plot.
Throughout the entirety of the film, there are too many perspectives to devote enough time to any of them. There is everything from the budding relationship between Poe and his old friend to the strange dynamic between Rey and Kylo. There are so many various plot twists and unanswered questions that nothing is developed fully. The characterization does not match that of the originals. There was no connection felt by the audience members to the characters on the screen.
In addition to the loose characterization, there was also a very disconnected explanation of the various storylines. One, in the first half of the movie, was Finn exclaiming to Rey just moments before they were about to fall to their deaths in a sandpit. At that moment, he says he has something he needs to tell her. Luckily, they make it out alive, but this moment is never addressed throughout the remainder of the movie. Similar open-ended questions remain. Where did the community of previous stormtroopers emerge from? Does Rey ever discover the identity of her true parents? And more importantly: what now?
These several unanswered questions of the new trilogy that cannot be answered using information from the previous trilogies either. Since so many new characters and plot lines were formed, there was no time to determine how this trilogy connected to the original movies.
The movie’s attempt to connect this trilogy to the other original movies was weak. Towards the end of the movie, it is revealed that Rey’s grandfather is Emperor Palpatine. This poses a fault in the well-known family tree. If Rey’s grandfather was Emperor Palpatine, that would mean that one of Rey’s parents was Palpatine’s son or daughter. However, at the end of the original trilogy, it is revealed that Palpatine is, in fact, the father of Anakin Skywalker, or Darth Vader. Age-wise, this would line Anakin’s children up with Rey, which doesn’t make sense, since she is about the same age as Leia’s son, Kylo. But what is even more confusing is the love connection between Kylo and Rey throughout the final trilogy. Based on this family tree, Kylo and Rey would be related, almost a generation off, which makes their relationship very strange. Regardless of if there was a generation gap between the time that Palpatine had his two children, Rey and Kylo are related.
In addition, the new form of “connection” between characters that can use the force is an idea that has not been developed in past movies. As shown throughout the “Rise of Skywalker” and other movies of that trilogy, Rey and Kylo have a connection through the force where they can find each other and even fight with each other telepathically. They are able to touch each other through this “shield” as well and communicate with each other. However, this was never prevalent in the other trilogies. The force was a means of communicating through the mind and it was never shown in real life. So, why is it that Kylo and Rey can do this? Also, why was Princess Leia able to do the same thing with Kylo, and how did that lead to her death?
This new connection is almost another dimension that the characters can enter, and it is never made clear how that was created and how the Jedi found out about it.
This movie was a loose attempt to finish the trilogy in what was meant to be an unsatisfying way. It appears purposeful as if they left it open-ended to continue the story in movies separate from the trilogy. They already appear to be doing so with shows like “The Mandalorian.” The Star Wars franchise is not over yet.
Rey and Kylo have this new form of connection that has not been developed in the previous movies. There are many other unexplainable attempts to tie the story together which were weak. Graphic by Mishal Nizar.
Graphic by Alexandra Guckel
Ayden REED and alexandra guckel
22/ THE STAMPEDE