__MAIN_TEXT__
feature-image

Page 1

SENIOR ISSUE PG. 30

April-May 2021

PLANNING THE PANDEMIC P. 16 HEALING HINSDALE P. 10

HINSDALE CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL | VOLUME 98 novcover.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 1 1

5/10/21 5/5/21 1:04 9:37 AM


DEVILS’ ADVOCATE

SENIOR ISSUE

HEAD EDITORS EDITOR-IN-CHEIF Mara Severts

MANAGING EDITORS

14

Nadia Burt Killian Hughes

COPY EDITOR

Christine Leung

SECTION EDITORS Sofija Buzelis Rania Arain Loukas Bezanis Grace Erwin Cedra Jazayerli Christine Leung Andrew Merz Grant Micaletti John Olsen Jameson Pecilunas Ricky Sahgal Lucas Salvatore Jessie Wang

CONTRIBUTERS Noor Myran Mikhail Essa Evan Kurimay Elyse Empamano Caroline Peterson Cover designed by Kritin Shanmugam Cover illustration by Mara Severts TOC designed by Mara Severts TOC photos provided by Rania Arain, Mara Severts, Jameson Pecilunas and Sofija Buzelis,

30

LETTER FROM THE

20

EDITOR

This May will close out a rambunctious year. A year full of the word “unprecedented,” and trying to move forward in spite of it. This issue, as seniors leave the nest, Devils’ Advocate takes a step to look backward and forwards- a reflection of the pandemic, our response, and what to do next. In “Healing Hinsdale”, Advocate takes a look at social workers and mental health in the pandemic, while “Battling Hunger Through a Pandemic” discusses volunteering at the HCS Family Services . “Planning the Pandemic” and “School’s Out, Summer’s In” dive into events during COVID-19, one with a spotlight on event planning in school and another on extracurricular break opportunities, while the editorial staff discusses pits and peaks of Social Emotional Learning. Our photo feature, “Eye of the Devil”, highlights the joys of promposals, while “Red Devil Redux” revisits the 2013 Central Boys tennis team’s successful run. “Hot Topics” spreads the current trends with teens, and “ By the Numbers” polls seniors on their college application experiences. “Ask an Athlete” interviews Avery Secola about Girls Lacrosse. Our battleground columnists debate gun control , as the “Daily Devil” gives a glimpse into free lunch and spring sports. “ How to:” writes on a senior’s reflection to underclassmen, and “Unsolicited advice” gives tips on how to enter your best self in the next school year. If you are interested in being involved in the upcoming year of Devils’ Advocate, please contact 822543@hinsdale86.org. We hope you enjoy this month’s issue, and the Devils’ Advocate Staff sends well wishes to all graduating seniors!

MARA SEVERTS EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

2 | Contents

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 2

5/10/21 9:37 AM


WHAT’S INSIDE

TABLE OF CONTENTS

AROUND CAMPUS DAILY DEVIL

4

HOT TOPICS

6 8

BY THE NUMBERS

PROFILES HEALING HINSDALE

10

BATTLING HUNGER IN A PANDEMIC

10 14

FEATURES

6

PLANNING THE PANDEMIC ࠡࠑࠖࠝࠝࠚ˽ࠡࠝࠣࠢߺ ࠡࠣࠛࠛࠓࠠ˽ࠡࠗࠜ

16 20

PERSPECTIVES

14

BATTLEGROUND ASK AN ATHLETE STAFF EDITORIAL RED DEVIL REDUX

SENIOR ISSUE

30

EYE OF THE DEVIL

54 56 57

HOW TO:

16

24 25 26 28

UNSOLICITED ADVICE

MISSION STATEMENT

20

Devils’ Advocate seeks to provide an open and diverse forum created by and for the students from Hinsdale Central. The staff of Devil’s Advocate aims to bring news to the community of the school and the surrounding area, by wokring with students, parents and faculty, as well as reporting on events in a fair and balanced manner. The publication strives to inform, educate and improve, the atmosphere and student body by sharing information and recognizing and ideas.

CONTACT

ࠏࠒࠤࠗࠡࠓࠠߺࠑࠖࠓࠠࠗࠡࠓࠚࠝࠞࠓࠨ ࠑࠚࠝࠞࠓࠨࠎࠖࠗࠜࠡࠒࠏࠚࠓࠆࠄ߼ࠝࠠࠕ

Contents | 3

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 3

5/10/21 9:37 AM


Daily Devil Spring sports are now in the mix Central athletes return to their respective sports seasons by Evan Kurimay

S

pring sports are now back on with strict COVID-19 rules and mandates. According to The New York Times, DuPage County has an average of 207 cases per day, as of April 27. Due to the increasing number of people receiving the vaccine there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and spring sports have made it more clear that the pandemic is near its end. Varsity football games, stadiums with limited fans, halftime shows, and the spirit of high school sports is back and it gives Hinsdale Central and many others hope. Track and field, baseball, boys and girls basketball, soccer, volleyball, softball

and tennis are all on for the spring. In addition to sports giving the Hinsdale Central student body and community hope, it serves as a filter psychologically for many students. The constant use of computers and long days of sitting have been hard on the Hinsdale Central student body, and the commencement of spring sports is the reset button back to a more traditional school setting. “I feel like coaches and staff are working as hard as they can to keep everyone safe, and I look forward to the seasons to come as we overcome these difficult times,” said football player Ardit Abdullai, freshman.

According to some students, not being able to have sports for a long time has made it difficult to stay in shape and active, especially with long periods of computer work. Students all around are benefitting from the recent changes in returning to campus and the commencement of sports. “The coaches have done a great job of allowing sports to happen and they’ve done a great job with safety precautions. The school should keep doing what they’re doing because it works well for all of us,” said soccer player Luke Knotts, freshman.

photo by Evan Kurimay.

Hinsdale Central varsity football team celebrates a win over Oak Park/River Forest High School on March 19, 2021. 4 | Around Campus

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 4

5/10/21 9:37 AM


Central’s cafeteria service continues to offer free lunches Students review the lunches they receive in school by Caroline Petersen and Elyse Empamano

S

ince the start of hybrid learning during the 2020-21 school year, Central’s cafeteria service has offered free lunches to all students who have been in-person. Regardless of the transition to a full day in-person model which started on April 6, these free lunches are still available to all in-person students. The lunch offered to students one day consisted of many foods that made the meal feel balanced and healthy. The entree was a breaded, cheesy chicken sandwich that could be reheated in the microwavable container it was served in. The sandwich was served with green beans, which could also be reheated in the container. The

lunch came with BBQ sauce for dipping, an apple, a bag of Scooby Snacks, and an orange tangerine juice box to drink. Additionally, there was a bag of mapleflavored Eggo Bites that could be eaten as a snack or for breakfast the next day. “I like how quick [the lunches] are,” said Angela Lim, freshman, “you just grab it, and as the name suggests, go. I think they are helpful for students who have to go to after school practice.” On another day, the lunch included a turkey and cheese sandwich with mayonnaise. The sides were two bananas, apple sauce, dried cranberries, and Tostitos tortilla chips. The photo by Caroline Petersen.

beverage was chocolate milk and the breakfast option was Trix cereal. Students in Cohort B - 50% of students who came in on Thursdays and Fridays during the previous hybrid model - were asked if they eat the school lunches, and most of them did. These same students, who eat the school lunch, were asked if the lunches were better on Thursdays, when students take lunch and bring it home, or on Fridays,when they take lunch and eat it at school. There were 27 freshmen who participated in the survey, and 48% said that they like lunch better on Thursdays, and51% of students said they liked lunch better on Fridays. Students said they liked Friday’s lunch better because drinks were kept colder and hot food was warmer. “The sandwich was good, and there is a nice variety when making the lunches. There are multiple combinations of snacks that come with the meals which vary depending on the lunch you take,” said Alison Reinhardt, freshman. “I would also add a dessert and maybe other drinks if they would be able to. I really like the fact that it’s available for the kids who need it.” Overall, according to students, Central’s free lunches are a quick and healthy option that many in-person Central students get.

Central’s free lunches offer in-person students a quick and healthy lunch option.

photo by Elyse Empamano. photo by Elyse Empamano.

Around Campus | 5

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 5

5/10/21 9:37 AM


HOT TOPICS by Grace Erwin designed by Kritin Shanmugam

TV

MUSIC

Behind Her Eyes “Behind Her Eyes” has claimed a spot as one of the most talkedabout psychological thrillers of the year already. The Netflix original, released on Feb. 17, started to pick up more and more viewers and became extremely popular around mid-March. The show follows a single mother protagonist (Simona Brown) who begins an affair with her psychiatrist boss (Tom Bateman) while simultaneously befriending his mysterious wife (Eve Hewson).

Justice by Justin Bieber Justin Bieber’s sixth studio album, “Justice,” was released on March 19, 2021, and quickly became the #1 album on iTunes charts. Consisting of 16 tracks, Bieber’s latest release already has four songs falling in the top 50 on iTunes.

Photo provided by Wikamedia Photo provided by Flickr

FOODS Avocado Toast Dunkin released their new avocado toast across the nation early this spring, and it has quickly become a fan favorite. The simple sourdough bread topped with avocado, sea salt, pepper, lemon, and everything bagel seasoning costs only $3 nationwide. This exciting new item was released alongside another new treat, the matcha topped donut. Made using a basic glazed base and sprinkled with matcha powder, this donut will only run customers about $1.19.

Photo provided by Flickr

6 | Around Campus

6-7(good).indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 2 6

5/10/21 5/3/21 8:17 9:37 PM AM


FASHION Corsets Corset tops have quickly become one of the trendiest and most popular clothing items of the Spring/Summer 2021 season. Commonly styled with jeans or skirts, many of the most popular corsets come in plain colors or floral patterns. The Victoria’s Secret version of these tops went viral on TikTok, sparking the high demand for this new trend. Photo provided by Wikamedia

APPS Calm

“Calm,” is a sleep and mediation app that has earned the Editor’s Choice stamp on the App Store. Raking in 1.2 million ratings, Calm has an average rating of 4.8 stars and is currently #4 in the Health and Fitness charts. The app features multiple instructors that lead users through meditations. They even offer mediations specifically designed for kids. Photo provided by PxHere

EVENTS Graduation The Hinsdale Central administration has been working hard to come up with a plan for the class of 2021 graduation taking place this May! In an email sent out to students and families, the school announced that each graduate will be given two tickets to the event to distribute to family or friends. Whoever cannot attend will be able to watch the live stream on May 17.

Photo provided by Pixabay

Around Campus | 7

6-7(good).indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 3 7

5/10/21 5/3/21 8:17 9:37 PM AM


IN

Seniors answer questions about appl by Mara 14 Resp

8 | By the Numbers

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 8

5/10/21 9:37 AM


IN

applying to college during COVID-19 y Mara Severts 14 Responses

By the Numbers| 9

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 9

5/10/21 9:37 AM


Written by Jessie Wang and Killian Hughes Illustrations by Rania Arain Designed by Rania Arain

   How Central’s mental health resources have changed during the pandemic

10 | Features

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 10

5/10/21 9:37 AM


G

olden retriever Angel and her handler, Kristen Stapleton, were frequent visitors at Central during finals week. Clad in a bright blue vest, Angel trotted down the halls, passing by students walking to their next period. Wherever her padded paws touched, the mood seemed to get a little lighter. Angel, who is certified as a comfort dog, was a (pre-COVID) resource available to stressed or anxious students. Before the pandemic hit, Stapleton and Angel would visit multiple schools, nursing homes, or hospitals in the DuPage area every week and provide therapeutic benefits. According to Stapleton, Angel’s calm demeanor and quiet presence elicits similar reactions across all age groups. This presence allows people to feel far calmer, and can provide a welcome break for their mental health. “It’s pretty much the same everywhere we go; if they’re having a bad day Angel gives them something to smile about... there’s just something that breaks down that barrier,” Stapleton said. For many students, Angel has been a familiar face for years. Stapleton explained that Angel’s occasional visits to Central to aid with de-stressing overwhelmed students were just one small part of a wide-ranging regimen. Angel is a part of a large network of similar comfort dogs throughout the country. According to Stapleton, the 130 dogs span dozens of states, and all of them fall under the supervision of various Lutheran Churches. In fact, the network is so unified that it only uses one breed of dog. “Our organization only uses golden retrievers. That’s their only breed. They started with goldens because they’re easy to train, [and] they’re very peoplefocused,” Stapleton said. “Angel… almost prefers playing with her humans… that’s just kind of inbred in their personality.” One service that Angel has been able to offer with enormous success has been helping children with disabilities. Angel travels to special needs classrooms, helping with the mental health of the children. “The teachers have told us that some of

the kids in that class are hyperactive… and that Angel has a calming effect on those students, where they will sit still and quietly pet her,” Stapleton said. “On the other hand, the kids who are kind of withdrawn seem to be brought out when they’re around Angel.” Angel also helps people, both in schools and outside of them, who are dealing with loss, tragedy, or otherwise traumatic events. Stapleton pointed out that several of Angel’s fellow retrievers were called to help out in the aftermath of March 22’s Boulder, Colorado shooting. Although their sessions have shifted

of all medical claims for individuals age 13-18 in March… and April [of 2020].” In addition, drug overdoses, a problem already on the rise, rose above average by 95% in March 2020 and 119% percent in April of 2020. These unique pandemic issues can pile on top of pre-existing concerns. Senior Neuroscientist Brittany LeModa at Northwell Health also pointed out that teenage years are already fraught with challenges caused by hormonal changes, new responsibilities, and relationships. “It is therefore not surprising that teens have been more susceptible to declines in psychological health over the last year,” said LeModa, in a Healthline article. Central has not been immune to these concerns. Peter Hutcheon, one of Central’s six social workers, said that there have been a few notable trends at the school since lockdown began more than a year ago. “This past year, there’s just been a lot with anxiety surrounding everything that’s going on. The uncertainty since the middle of March 2020 has made people feel… nervous, confused, concerned, [and] scared,” Hutcheon said. Because of these new challenges, Hutcheon notes that Central’s mental health facilities have had to adapt to the way they address mental health issues, both new and old. On top of the actual Photo from @lcck9angel on Instagram spike in various issues, the to Zoom, Angel remains an important department has faced logistical challenges resource to students who are struggling in how they carry out their appointments. with mental health issues, many of which Despite this, Hutcheon said that the have been exacerbated by the pandemic. transition to Zoom social work has been At Hinsdale Central, mental health largely smooth, at least from the school’s has always been an important issue - end of the line. Although he admitted physical education class RULER programs, that some interaction was lost over the monthly brain-related newsletters, and screen, he said he believes that overall the countless posters and announcements transition to Zoom has been successful for have provided education on the subject his department and the students they serve. for Red Devils. However, the COVID-19 “We can provide one-on-one pandemic has shed much more light on counseling services over Zoom or Google the importance of mental health at Central. Meets, and it actually works pretty well,” According to MedPage Today, an Hutcheon said. “We’ve had to adapt online medical newsletter, “mental health and really transition to what’s referred claims essentially doubled as a percentage to as telehealth, and you’re seeing that Features | 11

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 11

5/10/21 9:37 AM


kind of thing in the world in general.” One thing that Hutcheon said he believed helped Central’s mental health response to COVID-19 was its already strong infrastructure. The school, he said, has long had many resources at the disposal of students. “For example, the PE department has really made an effort to insert mental health into the curriculum. Whether that’s in health class or in the [freshman] PE classes, it has made a difference,” Hutcheon said. “That ensures every single person in the building is getting access to [curriculum] about mental health.” Central’s mental health infrastructure also relies on a team of six social workers, including Hutcheon. Each student is assigned a social worker depending on their school counselor. According to Hutcheon, any student can contact their social worker for any reason via email, appointment or phone. “We deal with all issues, from serious mental health conditions, check in sessions… life issues in general, relationships, or just to provide a confidential safe space for students to talk to someone,” Hutcheon said. These appointments do not require parental approval, but if a student is under the age of 17, they can only meet with their social workers for eight sessions of 90 minutes before their parents or guardians are contacted under Illinois State law. The law also requires social workers to contact parents or guardians if a student is talking about harming themselves or others. Privacy is important, said Hutcheon, but safety is tantamount. “The most important [purpose] of our jobs is [to] ensure a student’s safety, the safety of another student, or the safety of

the community, ” Hutcheon said. “We need to ensure the physical safety of not only the student, but everyone else [as well].” Although COVID has certainly caused serious problems, Hutcheon did say that there was a silver lining to the pandemic’s effect on mental health. “I think we can see a way to bring more awareness to it,” he said. “I feel like COVID has allowed us to talk a little bit more about mental health and like taking care of yourselves, because it’s been a challenge. It’s been a long year.” Hutcheon also pointed out that school social workers are often just one step towards getting full mental health help. Often, students are able to get help outside of the school, and many do as part of their personal plan. One private practitioner in Hinsdale is Melissa Ludzack, a licensed marriage and family therapist at Cedar Tree Therapy. She works with many age groups, but high school aged kids are some of her favorites. “I love working with [young people]. There’s just something about [them] [they] are like spitfires- [they] know what [they] think and what [they] feel deeply and I think that’s awesome,” Ludzack said. When it comes to helping teens, Ludzack said she believes that social media can be a helpful resource for mental health issues if it is used correctly. She also recommends different ways for dealing with stressful situations, such as going out for coffee with friends or going for walks. “I often tell people to check out the Depression Project on Instagram; they have things that are validating for both depression and anxiety,” Ludzack said. “Getting together with a trusted friend and taking a walk is [also] a really good thing to try to do.” While some students use social media

to support positive mental health messages, other students look to spread positivity at Central by joining the club Breaking Down the Walls. The club is involved in helping to spread positive messages on mental health, and provides a good opportunity for students to take action. Maria Rivera, senior and current president of the club, says that its two main goals are teaching younger students how to stop the spread of bullying at Central, and helping its members in becoming more kind people. “Definitely for our members, we open the floor for anyone to talk about anything they need because they know we’re always there for them,” Rivera said. However, not all students at Central are fully satisfied with the school’s mental health resources. Senior Cassie Maine offered suggestions on how the school might be able to improve its social work department. “The social work department is … understaffed for the number of kids that it’s supposed to take care of. And it’s really frustrating because I know that all the [social] workers there are super well intentioned,” Maine said. In order to accommodate the students already using the service and those Maine believes could benefit from it, she believes that the school should extend its social work department. Maine, who is planning to study psychology at Tulane University this fall, cited a statistic from the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), which recommends a ratio of one social worker to 250 general students, or one social worker to every 150 students if the students require intensive support. However, Central has a ratio of about one to 450 students, and a large percentage of Central’s social workers’

12 | Features

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 12

5/10/21 9:37 AM


time is spent working with students with learning disabilities. Central’s one to 450 ratio, says Maine, leaves social workers with far too heavy caseloads. In response to Maine’s criticism, Central’s Director of Counseling Jennifer Regnier stated that there are other support staff at Hinsdale Central helping students beyond the six social workers, including a wide range of similarly focused staff. “We have what are called student support teams,” Regnier said. “[They are] made up of the social worker, the school psychologist, the counselor and the school nurse, and we have a student support services coordinator.” In addition, Regnier pointed out that Central’s ratio of social workers to students, while not as low as the NASW’s recommendation, is better than most comparable schools, including Downers Grove North and South, LT, and Stevenson High School. “If you look at surrounding schools’ student to social worker ratio… [our ratio is] much lower, with six social workers. If you look at LT, which is quite a bit larger than us, they only have four. Downers Grove [South and North] have three and... four [respectively],” Regnier said. Although she admitted that the pandemic has accelerated a multi-year trend

of mental health issues increasing in scope, Regnier explained that the school is doing its best to adapt to the increase in cases. “We’re going to get another clinician [next year], either a social worker or psychologist, and we’re going to have an additional [position at] the SSC, or Student Success Center,” Regnier said. “We do recognize that the pandemic has definitely added to the number of kids needing mental health help, and so we’re going to address that over the next couple of years.” In the meantime, Maine explained that her personal struggles with anxiety throughout high school have given her a good perspective on the social work department, and that she has appreciated the resources that are available. “I have a pretty good relationship with my [social worker] - I’ve talked to her all four years of high school,” Maine said. Like Hutcheon, Maine recommended that students utilize Central’s social work resources more than they currently do. She described the process of contacting a school social worker for any student interested. “You can just email your counselor, and they’ll give you your social worker’s contact information, and then usually you can communicate directly with them to set up an appointment… like during

$

gym or during a free period,” Maine said. Maine suggests that social workers should be incorporated into freshmen or new student orientations. Even though some students go through their entire high school careers without meeting with their social worker, Maine said she believes that students could benefit from extra support. “The school [should be] encouraging students to have a relationship with their social worker[s] because it’s a lot less intimidating to ask [for help] once you have talked to them. I feel like … the school could schedule check ins with your social worker, maybe like per semester,” Maine said. The pandemic has changed a lot about mental health, including the presence of Angel to help students cope with various difficulties at school. However, as Rivera points out, students don’t need fur or paws to make Central a better place to be by themselves. ¨It’s as simple as being told ‘you have to be kind today’ to switch your mentality,” Rivera said. “To be kind doesn’t really take a lot - it just takes a reminder.”

25.OFF 00

o Code W/ Prom D COVI

Better Education. Better Student Experience. At The Lowest Price. Experience the Difference

• Changing a Tire • Expressway Driving • Chicago Driving • Texting & Driving Simulation Awareness • Parallel Parking

Now in Hinsdale at 111 W. Chicago Ave. www.BeAResponsibleDriver.com • 630-974-6700 Features | 13

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 13

5/10/21 9:37 AM


by Ricky Sahgal & Lucas Salvatore designed by Loukas Bezanis photos by Sofija Buzelis

A

cool breeze blows through the parking lot of the Hinsdale Memorial building, where a food pantry has been set up. Lining the street in front of the pantry are families in their cars, ready to pick up meals and other necessities for the upcoming week. Community service is always important, especially in a town like Hinsdale, which is surrounded by an area where one in five kids are hungry, according to the food bank’s website. HCS Family Services is a non-profit food pantry located in the heart of Hinsdale, and it is managed by Scott Brechtel. Located inside the Hinsdale Memorial

The Whole Foods employee is working through these dangerous times and sanitizes carts to make sure it is safe for customer use.

Battling Hunger Through a Pandemic

The local food pantry, Hinsdale Community Services, continues to fight hunger in spite of COVID-19 building, HCS Family Services distributes hundreds of carts worth of food each week. However, due to COVID-19, it has been much more difficult to provide service to families in need. Regardless, local food banks are keeping up by doing everything they can. “(In March) we filled 365 carts. The most ever filled in one pantry session since the pandemic began,” Brechtel said. In order to account for the sudden rise in demand, there are two days set aside per week for families to come and get their meals and supplies for that week. The prepackaged supplies are the equivalent to a full shopping cart. Due to the generosity of all of

the people donating to the pantry, both food and personal care products for the entire family are taken care of. These packages are given to people visiting the pantry by volunteers, who put them in customers’ trunks. This way they are still able to provide food, while at the same time following the safety guidelines put in place by the CDC. Due to COVID-19, it has been important for food services around the world to make sure that they are doing well and providing as much relief as they can. During the pandemic, many have gone hungry and it is not easy to address everyone affected. HAC Family Services

14| Profile

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 14

5/10/21 9:37 AM


knows this, so they aim to help as many people as possible by extending their help out to more than 20 different nearby towns. With just two full-time and two part-time employees, HCS Family Services relies on nearly 100 volunteers each week to help them in their mission to ensure everyone in the community is fed. Without the volunteers, the service would not be able to have such an impact on the community. “Volunteers are what make our work possible. Obtaining and distributing nearly 600,000 pounds of food a year is truly a community effort,” Brechtel said.

these unprecedented hours. After all of the hours put in to helping their community, the volunteers all said that they all feel a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction knowing that they are making a real impact on their community. “A main priority for the pantry is not just to have enough food for the people in need, but to also have healthy foods for people especially at this time of year,” Brechtel said. Volunteers at the pantry have put a lot of emphasis on the quantity of food and products that they serve. They said they want to make sure that each and every

“With everything going on in the world, we want to make a difference and ensure people aren’t going hungry.” - Scott Brechtel Right now, despite difficulty volunteering due to the pandemic, community contributions are what help them thrive. Through their donation portal, they are able to take any size donation and turn it into twice the amount of groceries. Despite generosity, volunteers are still necessary to ( the food bank). They are hoping to get in person volunteering back as soon as possible. “Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 Tier 2 Resurgence Mitigations guidance put forth by Governor Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Public Health, we are currently holding off on accepting new volunteers to our program...we hope to get back to normal operations soon,” Brechtel said. The Food Pantry prides itself on providing for the people in need, now more than ever. “With everything going on in the world, want to make a difference and make sure we are doing everything in our power to ensure people aren’t going hungry,” Brechtel said. The Hinsdale Food Pantry’s volunteers are working hard to bring food to everyone in need through

person has enough supplies for at least an entire week, so that they don’t have to worry about where their next meal will come from. “We want to ensure that everyone has very easy and also equal access to the pantry so that everyone is healthy and satisfied,” Brechtel said. Their mission is to not only end hunger around Hinsdale but also to put an end to hunger all over the suburbs of Illinois. The pantry serves from Bellwood to Countryside to Downers Grove, in an effort to feed everyone they can. During a pandemic a food pantry is certainly a place that can be deemed as high risk, according to the CDC, so they have made safety, sanitation and the passing of food their top priority in order to keep everyone healthy. “To safeguard the health of our guests and volunteers during these unprecedented times, we have temporarily suspended our in-person shopping method of food distribution and now offer no-contact, drivethru food support,” Brechtel said. It’s not a local crisis, according to Feed America, an organization that partners with food banks to offer

nutritious meals. The pandemic has only worsened the hunger issue in the country. In a press statement on its website, Chief Government Relations Officer, Kate Leone, said the Biden administration will continue to address the hunger crisis. “Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger-relief organization, applauds the news that President Biden is expected to sign an executive order that will provide much-needed federal food assistance to families struggling to afford enough to eat,” said Leone, in a statement on Feed America’s site. “The executive order also takes two steps that will bolster the power of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), our nation’s first line of defense against hunger.” The new additions will strengthen the impact of SNAP, a program that provides nine meals for every one meal. The issue of world hunger is something that anyone can make an impact on. Once it is safe to do so, signing up and volunteering is a great way to help the pantry, as well as help fight the hunger crisis, according to Brechtel. “Volunteers are what make our work possible. Obtaining and distributing nearly 1,250,000 pounds of food each year is truly a community effort,” Brechtel said. With all of the help coming from the community, whether it be the donations, the volunteering, or even just spreading the word about the pantry, HCS Family Services continues to provide for each and every family who comes to them for help.

Profile | 15

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 15

5/10/21 9:37 AM


PLANNING IN THE PANDEMIC

Central’s clubs discuss the pits and peaks of keeping up school spirit during COVID-19 by Drew Merz and Mara Severts

T

he gym is packed, buzzing with raw anticipation. Students sit shoulder to shoulder, packed like sardines as murmurs rush in waves. On the sidelines, cheerleaders and pommers shake off pre-performance jitters, leaving the gym floor open for the event about to begin. As the lights dim and the music starts, chatter quiets. The pep rally begins. It’s been about a year since any Central student has seen an event as large as the quintessential pep rally. However, it has felt like much longer for the clubs and

Design by Mara Severts

Illustrations by Mara Severts

and students that plan them. The Varsity club and the Student Council used to thrive on crowds and the excitement they brought. Now, these clubs and their students have had to look for alternatives to keep school spirit alive. COVID-19 has rendered most inperson events practically impossible due to tight restrictions regarding the pandemic’s safety protocols. Packing thousands of people inside the gym is impossible due to spacing rules in place. Despite this, the clubs and teachers that work hard to put

Photos courtesy of Loukas Bezanis

together these events carry on, and try to adapt in whatever ways they can. For clubs centered around planning, like Varsity club and Student Council, members try to keep school spirit alive through online and modified activities. Virtual scavenger hunts, contests and dress days are all employed, while some try inperson events like bingo night and passing out gingerbread before winter break. Despite their best efforts, some club members still greatly miss their favorite activities, while others reevaluate what

16 | Features

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 16

5/10/21 9:37 AM


means for event planning in the future. For many, school events like pep rallies, homecoming, and prom are at the center of the Hinsdale Central community. Central students who love spirit and planning try to put their skills to use by joining Varsity club or running for Student Council. “It’s a way to bring together the student body behind a fun activity to build class morale,” said senior Boone Brackett, a Student Council member. “It’s just a really good way to be involved with the school, and you get to see a lot of things behind the scenes.” Student Council usually organizes and fundraises for many pep rallies and whole school events. On the other hand, Varsity club focuses on seasonal events and homecoming. Despite the clubs being different, the motivations that draw students to either one are similar. “You get to organize things for the school and kind of be a part of it,” said Grace Deane, sophomore and member of Varsity club. “I felt more connected to the school by being able to help plan events and do stuff for events.” Both of the clubs, however, maintain high club attendance. Student Council has always been a part of high school life, and much of Varsity club’s membership comes from younger siblings of past members or by word of mouth. Varsity club has been attempting to turn their seasonal events into online activities or out of school opportunities. These activities included a shamrock scavenger hunt for Saint Patrick’s day, an online baking competition for Valentine’s Day, and virtual dress days. However, Varsity club has struggled with student participation, despite their best efforts. “I was really excited [for the Valentine’s Day baking competition], and only like seven people did it,” Deane said. Sponsors attribute poor participation to lack of publicity and zoom fatigue. Deane hypothesized that not many people are aware of these events, while Mrs. Sally Phillip, Director of Student Activities and Student Council sponsor, said she believes that most kids are too tired of Zoom to join online events. “I think by the end of the day, people are done, they’re done with Zoom... (students are) like, no, I don’t want to be on a computer,” Phillip said. “ It’s harder and harder to get kids to engage in it because people are exhausted.” Student Council faces different

roadblocks, as students and sponsors alike have hit a wall between desires and what is possible. For every successful event Student Council has put on, there were many more events that never saw the light of day due to COVID-19 restrictions. Ideas like an outdoor polar express event, fit with a train around the school track, was cancelled due to rising case numbers. A yearly tradition of banana split day couldn’t be done due to food contamination worries and possible contact. For prom, students in the council had initially hoped for something different, but opted for a smaller event after hitting a wall with restrictions. “At the beginning, we wanted to have a much bigger event with dinner... unfortunately that wasn’t realistic,” Brackett said. Students have kept up their creative spirits with big ideas, but at the end of the day, it all comes down to whether the event can be executed safely. And for many in-person events, regulations say no.

Features | 17

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 17

5/10/21 9:37 AM


Neither online approaches nor in person events seem to work better than the other- both have their benefits and pitfalls. And both Varsity club and Student Council members say they miss in-person events as well. The joy of planning and executing events is hard to find when events are scarce or only online. But students have learned to work around it and keep up their zest for their respective clubs. “In the beginning it did hurt my excitement and enthusiasm, but I think I’ve learned that... you just have to make the most of the situation,” Bracket said. Nevertheless, key parts of the club are still lost. Some members said they still believe there is something left to be desired from the makeshift events set up by clubs. Zooms meetings don’t bring the same energy as football games do. “I wish there was a way that we could connect everybody… so everybody can talk about it and it brings everybody together,” Deane said. However, in person events were not always perfect. Both Mrs. Jill Tylk and Mrs. Stephanie Hiffman, sponsors of Varsity club, said they felt that while kids said they missed dances and events, attendance pre-COVID was sharply declining. Despite constant changes and innovations made to both the winter dance and homecoming, both dances have declined sharply in attendance. Both teachers recall students dressing up for homecoming, but leaving in droves after about an hour. Plenty of modifications have been triedeverything from ice rinks to gaming systems, to required hours and making

the dance earlier for urfew. Nothing seems to change the trend of kids leaving prematurely. “[It’s] a Hinsdale Central problem, not another school’s problem. Students every year are like ‘oh, no one goes to dances, that’s not a thing’, but our DJ has even flat out told us [that] this school is weird

[about attendance],” Hiffman said. Homecoming is a huge event for the Varsity club, with months of planning and fundraising to try and keep it going. Tylk and Hiffman both say that low attendance is a disappointment to Varsity club upperclassmen, leading to questions every year on how to raise spirits. According to Tylk, nothing seems to work.

“No one goes to the dances, and so that trickles down and it ends up being this thing that is just a forever perpetual problem for us that we’re facing,” Tylk said. Despite this, neither said they think homecoming will truly die out. However, they don’t have high hopes for the winter dance, which has also had steadily declining attendance. “I don’t think homecoming will ever go away, but the winter thing has already changed...and that is still in the works for what that’s going to look like going forward,” Tylk said. Even with falling attendance to key events like homecoming, students and teachers alike can agree on one thing- the joy of pep rallies. “l really did like the pep rallies, I think those are so fun to plan, to come up with the games and stuff people are playing,” Brackett said. COVID-19 has caused clubs like Student Council and Varsity club to miss out on some of their favorite events, but the club members said they still believe they put in the most effort to create normalcy. “I do think we did the best that we could, in each moment,” Phillip said. “Honestly, I think we tried as hard as we could to make things happen and be as creative as we could, as we went.” Changes also opened up ideas in the future. Varsity club is considering keeping their COVID-19 updated program of giving gift cards for the holidays instead of gift baskets. Phillip also said she enjoyed the virtual Cultural Fair and being able to cook along with her family. As far as future turn outs go, people predict that attendance at school events could either skyrocket or plummet. Event planners are hoping that upperclassmen,

18 | Features

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 18

5/10/21 9:37 AM


desperate for social events, will come out in droves. But others worry that less exposure of events to the lowerclassmen might stunt their attendance. Brackett has his own prediction as to what next year and later this year might look like. “I’m worried that the freshmen might not (go) because they’ve never had (school events), so they don’t know about going to a football game with your friends,” Brackett said. “So, I think the most important thing is encouraging kids to go to them.” Regardless, all are excited for some resemblance of normalcy. Student Council members look forward to planning the annual prom, even if the event is modified. Varsity club hopes to put on in person events in the 2021-2022 school, and they hope that students understand that clubs have done the best to meet the needs of the school. “I’m sure everybody wants more. And

“This is one of those things that is out of anyone’s control, and you have to just put your best foot forward.”- Boone Brackett

I know that kids want things to be the same,” Phillip said. “I hope they’re satisfied with what has been offered to them with the guidelines that we’ve had to follow.”

Features | 19

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 19

5/10/21 9:37 AM


         

 20 | Features

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 20

5/10/21 9:37 AM


T

he sun beats down as cats, dogs, and reptiles mill around, picked up and played with by giddy children in the grass. Others work on paper crafts, sheltered under white tents spaced six feet apart. High school student volunteers walk around, ensuring everything is in place. The Hinsdale Humane Society will be running it’s annual summer camps with help from the high school Youth Board, which is entirely composed of Hinsdale Central students. These high schoolers will be leading and engaged in various initiatives and projects both in and outside the school district this summer. Hinsdale Central offers more than 20 summer school courses that draw students hoping to complete extra credits or to simply improve their skills, from Geometry to Guitar I. Others take courses at nearby universities, including institutions such as Northwestern, University of Chicago, and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Whether it be summer school, college courses, or elective camps, some students try pre-existing programs, while others choose to start initiatives or volunteer opportunities on their own. Summer initiatives started by students are typically small businesses where students sell products or offer academic services. Paton Mehrhoff, junior, is developing a business program for local elementary to middle school students. Future Economists of the World aims to teach kids about economic concepts such as supply and demand, cash flow, and the stock market. Mehrhoff says her goal isn’t to create 10-year-old business moguls, but instead to expose them to topics that are not seen in the average elementary curriculum. “We’re hoping to teach our young elementary schoolers some economic concepts... before they get to middle school and high school so they can find out if they have an interest in it at an early age,” Mehrhoff said. The inspiration for this initiative has a unique origin, with Mehrhoff getting the idea from a reading

left to right: Paton Mehroff; Camryn Saltzman and friend at the Hinsdale food bank. Photos by Jamie Pecilunas

section of a practice ACT test. “The reading section was talking about a similar program in Scotland,” Mehrhoff said. “So I took the ideas from those things and then adapted it to what I think….would work best.” Like Mehrhoff, senior Camryn Saltzman is using her summer to organize events to benefit the community through the Hinsdale Family Services food pantry. Hinsdale Family Services, also known as HCS, is a local nonprofit organization that provides food for people in need within the DuPage and Cook counties. Saltzman serves as president of the HCS junior board (which includes 30-50 high school students) and is responsible for organizing many of their general activities, from working in the pantry as volunteers to planning monthly meetings and events. “We take groceries to peoples’ cars. We have two pantry locations in Hinsdale and in Willowbrook and do three times a week right now for pantry and food distribution,” Saltzman said. Saltzman said her current volunteer work will continue in the summer, but the HCS Junior board will also be leading larger events. One of their biggest events this summer is the Battle of the Boards, a competition between various junior boards in the community which will be

run by the Hinsdalean magazine. “There is going to be a competition between seven of the local junior boards in Hinsdale to see who can have the highest weight of food, and that’s going to be...our big drive,” Saltzman said. Though her organization hopes to win the Battle of the Boards, Saltzman said that there is no set goal for the number of donations. Instead, Saltzman is looking for support and interaction from the community. “We are really thankful and fortunate that we have such a generous community that’s always willing to give back,” Saltzman said. Volunteering will be a popular activity for many Hinsdale Central students this summer, according to senior Maria Rivera. Rivera will be a volunteer at the Hinsdale Humane Society this summer, under Lauren Link, the Humane Education Program Manager. The Hinsdale Humane Society is a nonprofit animal shelter providing care and adoption services for all animals. This upcoming summer the Humane Society will be hosting their summer camps, primarily for children ages 6-12. At the camp, youth learn how to care for animals, create crafts, and build relationships with other participants. While it normally is an annual occurrence, last year the Humane Society wasn’t able to allow Features | 21

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 21

5/10/21 9:37 AM


volunteers due to the pandemic. “Last year, we decided it was in everyone’s best interest to limit the number of people at our camps as much as we could. With more knowledge about the spread of COVID-19 this year we are so excited to welcome them back to this role,” Link said. Rivera explained that she was looking forward to working at the Humane Society and that she thoroughly enjoyed all the volunteer activities she has done in the past. “We set up and took down those tents that they used for camp, and we would socialize with the animals... to make sure that they knew what human interaction is,” Rivera said. Students often use volunteerism and extracurricular camps as a way to gain experience in careers they hope to have a future in. Mark Wollschlaeger who runs the SIR program at Central says that the students who come through this program are typically dedicated to science in their future endeavors. “Everybody who’s in the program now, and looking to take the program this summer...is considering the... research field or some scientific field,” Wollschlaeger said. The Science Inquiry Research program, or SIR, is a summer enrichment course offered at Hinsdale Central started by Wollschlaeger 11 years ago. Students in SIR 1, the basic introductory course, learn how to design, run, and then analyze the data from an original experiment. SIR 2 and 3 are the following courses in which students are paired up with a mentor and work in a lab on a larger, more intensive project. Wollschlaeger noted that the SIR 2 and 3 programs are more rigorous in workload. In the end however, dedication to this lab work has often had incredible results for students. According to Wollschlaeger, every year at least one student from Central is published in an academic journal and invited to speak about their research. “The notables have been the students that have been published,” Wollschlaeger said. “We have had students that have been offered scholarships from the program... as well.” Students are able to choose their mentors and area of study, giving them much more autonomy than they

might have in a normal science class. According to Wollschlaeger, there are 40 to 50 mentors on the list that students have access to. However, science teachers from Central still act as guiding figures in the SIR program. “We try to get at least one teacher from every science discipline,” Wollschlaeger said. “That way if the students have questions they can do a project in any subject and they’ve got that teacher to help.” Under the SIR program, research positions at prestigious facilities become more accessible. Dan Ortiz, junior, said that his work mapping the electrical field with the Dahl

Photo provided by Tyler Folkmann

Research Group, though remote this year, is directed through Northwestern and Fermilab. These experiences tend to increase student enthusiasm about scientific and medical fields. “I do definitely want to go into the science field. [SIR] helped me figure out how much I really liked computer science, so I probably want to go into a...related field,” Ortiz said. For many Hinsdale Central students like Ortiz, these summer initiatives and programs are a way to further explore a potential career or cultivate skills needed for their future job. Saltzman said she hopes to utilize the communication skills she has learned as president of the HCS board in her possible future careers

as a teacher or occupational therapist. “This leadership role has been... great for me to be able to gain some confidence. I hope to teach a classroom one day so having this experience with leading others will help,” Saltzman said. Hands on experiences in science are available in a variety of camps and programs. Tyler Folkmann, junior, will be taking the Chicago Industrial Arts and Design Center’s Teen Metalworking Camp. He explained that participants are given a lot of freedom and are able to create whatever they desired - instructors were simply there to provide guidance. “They give you advice as to how to go about making things because there are several different ways, and...they can tell you from their experience what might be best,” Folkmann said. While he was ultimately looking forward to the experience as a whole, he also said this is an opportunity to further skills he will use in the future for his career. “I want to be an engineer when I grow up. This camp will help to nurture (my) problem solving, planning, and design [skills,] but it also gives me practical experience with working with materials and tools to help give me an idea of how things are made,” Folkmann said. Whether it be through volunteering or metal working camps, students are excited for the activities they have planned for the summer. “I can’t wait for this summer and [volunteering] because it’s just a really rewarding feeling, and I love giving back,” Saltzman said.

22 | Features

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 22

5/10/21 9:37 AM


Untitled-1 217825 DA 1May_2021_r2.indd 23

2/22/21 9:37 5/10/21 2:43 AM PM


BATTLEGROUND GUN CONTROL CONTEXT: With multiple mass shootings taking place, the question of gun control has been brought to light. But many have been debating how exactly to deal with this epidemic. So, should universal background checks DQGRWKHUSUHYHQWDWLYHPHDVXUHVEHSXWLQSODFHRQDFTXLULQJDVVDXOWULÁHV"

NOOR MYRAN

Assault Rifles have once again come under fire as a leading threat to American safety following the fatal mass shootings which have taken place these last few months. Before getting ready to support their ban, however, one must understand what an assault rifle is. While it is typically considered the rapid-firing automatic machine guns many times showcased on television, an assault rifle is actually a broad term generalizing many long guns with semi-automatic firing capabilities. Majority of the rapid-firing, automatic guns are already banned, and at least heavily regulated, in most places. Many people have finally started to understand that it isn’t necessarily the weapons that are the issue, but instead the intentions of some who use them for harming others. This realization has led to a push in favor of universal background checks. It may seem like an obvious step in the right direction, but not without several constitutional considerations. The National Review argues that the federal government’s powers are limited to transactions within two states while universal background checks would involve the government in private gun purchases between two citizens. Additionally, many fear a privacy issue could emerge as universal background checks would require the development of a ‘national registry’. This registry would give the federal government access to who owns what gun and where which many feel is a threat to privacy. Even aside from all the complications and constitutional aspects related to the implementation of universal background checks, is the issue of whether they actually make a difference in decreasing gun violence or not. Apparently, research from Johns Hopkins actually found an association between areas with universal background checks in place and the number of gun-related deaths. Additionally, the University of California Davis found similar results as they realized the universal background checks provided little difference in the number of gun-related deaths in California. There is no doubt a need for safety measures and discussions related to the increased gun violence in the United States. However, interpretations of the constitution and studies from research universities offer little support for the implementation of universal background checks. Perhaps, other solutions focused on mental health support and self defense training could lead America’s future efforts against gun violence.

MIKHAIL ESSA

Yes, Universal Background Checks and other preventative measures should be put in place to acquire assault rifles. Before any arguments are presented, I believe that it’s important to address the history of Universal Background Checks and their direct implications on communities of people of color. Historically, racial bias in Background Check systems have perpetuated the mass incarceration of Black people. This is why a Universal Background Check that is aware of racial bias in our current political systems, and acts against this bias is imperative to the safety of our country. According to Statista in 2021, semi-automatic (assault) rifles were used in four of the five deadliest mass shootings. The majority of these five deadliest shootings also included a mentally unstable individual who had access to this weapon and used it inhumanely. A Universal Background Check would ensure that people with complicated and severe mental issues, domestic abusers, and repeat offenders don’t gain access to an assault rifle, and thus, don’t have the ability to use it when they cannot do so in a stable condition. In ensuring that those who should not have an assault rifle don’t have one, we are preventing PTSD and Major Depression Disorder that youth experience after surviving mass shootings, as according to Time in 2019. It may be argued that assault rifles are crucial to self defense. I wholeheartedly agree that if someone desires arms for personal protection, they should have access to them. However, an assault rifle is not the safe or reasonable solution. They result in more danger than protection, and as a result, should require a background check to obtain. A Universal Background Check for assault rifles is not an infringement on the second amendment. Rather, it is a way that the government can proactively protect its citizens from unwarranted violence.

24 | Perspectives

bgmay.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 1 24

5/10/21 5/3/21 5:22 9:37 PM AM


Ask an Athlete

by Nate Bittner

Number (Why do you wear it?)

Photos provided by Avery Secola

17

I wear the number 17 because it was my sister’s number when she played for Hinsdale Central and I wanted to continue to carry on the number.

Secola drives through a pair of defenders in a 2019 home game against New Trier.

Age

18

Team

Class

Girls Varsity Lacrosse Senior

Brand of Choice

College Arizona State University

Position

Midfield/Attack

Favorite Spot to Score

Who do You Look Up To? “One person I’ve always looked up to is my sister. Even though she doesn’t play currently, she’s always been a role model for me. She taught me how to handle the ups and downs of the sport and still continues to give me great advice.”

Left Side of Net

Avery Secola About Me Q: When did you start playing lacrosse? A: I started playing lacrosse around first or second grade. Q: What got you into the sport? A: My dad got me into lacrosse; he started coaching my sister at a young age and wanted to get me into the sport at a young age so he could coach me as well. Q: What is your favorite Red Devil Lacrosse memory? A: My favorite Red Devil Lacrosse memory would have to be when we played York in the playoffs my sophomore year. We went into overtime and I had to take an 8 meter shot to win the game. Luckily, I made the shot and we all just went crazy. Q: What are you most thankful for when it comes to Hinsdale Central lacrosse? A: I’m most thankful for the relationships I have built in the lacrosse program: teammates, coaches, parents, etc. This program has been nothing but supportive of me and continues to build me as a player.

Perspectives | 25

Ask an Athlete 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd ID- Avery Secola 25 FINAL.indd 1

5/10/21 5/3/21 8:02 9:37 PM AM


STAFF EDITORIAL SOCIAL EMOTIONAL YEARNING This editorial is the consensus of the Devils’ Advocate Editorial Board.

I

more serious emotional events, even trauma. The superficial worksheets and impersonal questions are unexciting for most, and don’t open up a real dialogue about students’ emotions and goals . Tools such as the everpresent “Mood Meter”, (Provided in the back of every Central student planner,) become overused and trite. While the tool, which breaks down emotions into color-coded quadrants, serves as a great emotional reminder, it forces repetition. When asked to use the “Mood Meter’’ to label the parts of their day, students nearly always follow the same pattern: blue (tired) in the morning, yellow(excited) at lunch, and green(happy) by the end of the day. Despite student reservations, teacher and administration excitement about SEL is something to be cherished- enthusiasm about bettering teen mental health is admirable and a great core to working with children. Physical education teachers have gone through seminars and training to get to the point that they are at today, and these important skills are wasted when handing out standardized worksheets and forms. “Some things that we could do differently…are really working towards having lessons that are not redundant [across grade levels],” said Courtney Wallace, physical education and health teacher. It is clear that improvements can be made to the program to help students better apply these lessons to their lives. A step in the right direction would be providing broader mediums than just worksheets to students, whether that be discussion, interesting articles, or even connections to films.Classes could also offer specific mental health resources and tactics, and allow in-class time for personal

growth and mental health. While some worksheets tackle emotion tactics such as “meditation” or “ listening to music”, kids can still be pretty directionless with what to do with newfound recognition of emotions. Including time in class for yoga, or journaling or working out would be a great way for kids to see what works for them. Additionally, teachers could point kids to mental health apps, websites, or counselors to help them outside of the classroom. “I think that if we could have more student voices on what their needs are and what their wants are...in order to help them with their struggles, that would be...beneficial,” Tazelaar said. If SEL wanted to take a bigger step forward, it would also be impactful if the program was expanded. If other departments, such as English or history, were provided additional tools, the concepts and learning points could be much more easily implemented into a curriculum than in a PE class. Teachers could subtly discuss the importance of empathy when reading Of Mice and Men, or the toll of mental health on historical figures like Nietzsche and Van Gogh. This wouldn’t be to negate the PE program—but as an addition, where teachers from different departments could combine to create the best possible outcome. “[SEL] isn’t perfect, far from it, but there are some pretty valuable things you could learn,” said Stephen Podracky, senior. Teenagers will always be reluctant to discuss mental health with adults, especially in a class full of their peers, but there are still ways we can optimize the programs we have in place to best fit the students they are trying to serve.

illustration by Mara Severts

t’s 8:56 a.m., and freshmen pile into the gym and Zoom simultaneously, groggily sitting in neat lines. Logging into Canvas, tired students aimlessly fill in a “Mood Meter check-in” about their emotions throughout the day, before submitting the document without a passing thought. According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 10-20% of teens experience a mental health issue, a statistic that has rapidly climbed in the past 20 years. Schools are looking for a way to provide mental health aid, through promoting regulation of emotions, building mental resilience, and emphasizing positive environments. Social-Emotional Learning, also known as SEL, was introduced at Central approximately six years ago to align with this mental health aid, according to Lisa Tazelaar, Physical Education and SEL coach. Specifically, Central follows the RULER program from Yale University, a derivation of SEL. The Yale program’s emotional intelligence principles are recognizing, understanding, labeling, expressing, and regulating: RULER. The goals of this program are undoubtedly valuable, as it attempts to help students identify their emotional state and learn how to address it. However, the value of SEL is lost in the format that it is currently taught at Central. Over the past few years, students have received sporadic and brief SEL lessons in which they are asked to fill out some sort of self-reflection on their day and emotional state. The frequency of these lessons has increased due to COVID-19, hindering opportunities to be active. Oftentimes the reflections seem elementary, especially for high school students who have already experienced 26 | Perspectives

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 26

5/10/21 9:37 AM


+&+6678'(176 Enroll now in our WEBCAST online course. Self-Paced course modules can be taken at any time 24/7!

*Schedule your in-vehicle lessons at any of our 30+ convenient locations including Hinsdale, Western Springs and Downers Grove * All Teen Program packages include our innovative 3DUHQW&RDFKLQJ6\VWHP 800-374-8373

www.topdriver.com

We Teach 'ULYHU,QWHOOLJHQFHŒ

Untitled-3 217825 DA 1May_2021_r2.indd 27

10/21/20 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


RED DEVIL REDUX Hinsdale Central Tennis 2013: A Coach's Perspective

I

n sports, every organization or franchise has a team in their history that was a level above the rest in terms of talent or success. At the professional level in Chicago, the 1985 Bears, 90’s Bulls, 2005 White Sox, early 2010’s Blackhawks, and most recently, 2016 Cubs all fit that description. Those program or franchisedefining teams aren’t exclusive to the pros, with colleges and high schools also having similar experiences. For the Boys’ Tennis program at Central, that program-defining team stepped onto the clay in 2013 and had a season that most schools could only dream of having. Starting in mid-March with a tournament win against some of the best teams east of the Mississippi river and ending in late May with a record-breaking Illinois state title run, the 2013 Boys’ Tennis team established themselves as one of the best, if not the best team in state history. The success that the Red Devils achieved

by John Olsen

ranked 6th in his class nationally. John Naisbitt, head coach at the time, said he believes with the amount of talent they had, they would have a real claim to be the best team in the state, at any level. “I think that we would’ve beat a lot of colleges in Illinois,” Naisbitt said. “Maybe University of Illinois could beat us, and maybe Northwestern could beat us, but we would’ve beat a lot of colleges that year. We were one of the best teams in the state, period, and that’s not hyperbole, that’s just talent.” With a roster of that quality, there has to be a coaching staff capable of guiding the players to reach their potential. The Red Devils were led by Naisbitt and assistant coach Scott Radecki. Naisbitt said he has nothing but praise for Radecki and how he helped develop the team. “He was a big part of this,” Naisbitt said. “He’s a brilliant tennis mind and I’ve leaned on him a lot.”

Photo from John Naisbitt

The 2013 Boys' Tennis team amassed 59 out of a possible 60 points in the Illinois state tournament, a record which will never be broken since the format of the tournament has been changed since.

was helped in part by the blend of talent and experience that was on the roster. As far as experience goes, Central was anchored by two seniors, Peter Heneghan, a 3-star recruit, and Alex Hagermoser, a 4-star recruit, as well as junior Chase Hamilton. The remainder of the roster was filled out by 3 sophomores: Michael Lorenzini, a 4-star recruit, Eddie Grabill, a 5-star recruit, and Martin Joyce, a 5-star blue-chip recruit

Both Radecki and Naisbitt were responsible for making sure the players were as prepared as possible for whoever they faced, and that preparation starts in practice. A popular adage in sports is that “Champions are made on the practice field,” and this tennis team was no exception to that idea. Naisbitt said the coaches attempted to create a practice environment that would challenge the players, technically,

physically, and mentally. “We tried to set up competitive practices and have competitive drills and fitness,” Naisbitt said. “[The players] are all very competitive by nature, so all you have to do is set them up and their competitive nature will come out. It gets very heated, but it’s also a lot of fun. I make sure practice is competitive because then the players enjoy it.” Naisbitt said setting his players up for success isn’t just about the practices, but also making sure they’re comfortable off the court. “You have to be flexible with their needs,” Naisbitt said. “These super elite players have special circumstances that they have to work through because of extra tournaments or their schedule. I try to be flexible with them about some of these demands and help them juggle this whole thing.” The last ingredient in helping these players succeed, is the coaching they receive during matches. Naisbitt said he wants to keep a positive mindset at all times. “I just try to support them and stay positive,” Naisbitt said. “I look towards the future and how we can dictate the future because I don’t want to dwell on the negative.” Naisbitt’s coaching and the players’ preparation would face its first test by starting the season with the DecoTurf High School Tennis Team Championships, a tournament which brings together some of the best teams from the eastern half of the country and pits them against each other in a single-elimination bracket. Naisbitt said having such a competitive tournament to kick off the season can be a real eye-opener at times. “It really shows you where you’re at,” Naisbitt said. “My goodness it really lets you know your strengths and weaknesses right away.” Clearly, the Red Devils were in a much better place than the rest of the field, as they blasted their way through the tournament. After disappointing showings in prior appearances at the invitational, a first place finish provides some reconciliation for those performances. Naisbitt said one of the defining memories of that tournament was the sheer

28 | Perspectives

Senior Issue 217825 DA Column.indd May_2021_r2.indd 2 28

4/28/2021 5/10/2118:41:15 9:37 AM


and utter annihilation of some of the best teams in the country. “We played 36 matches against future and defending state champions east of the Mississippi, and we won 33 of those,” Naisbitt said. “We not only won that tournament, but we dominated it in a way that hadn’t been done before, and hasn’t been done since. That team was amazing, and we just didn’t lose.” Additionally, with the 2013 season being his fourth at the helm, Naisbitt said the progression and improvement of the team to get to this level was not only a testament to the ability of his players, but also to the quality of his man-management style. “I chalk [the win] all up to the players,” Naisbitt said. “If you keep them healthy and happy and hungry for a title, and get them pointing in the right direction, then you’ve set yourself up for good results.” The season was just getting started, and claiming the DecoTurf title was just the first in a line of goals for this team. With the drop-off in the level of competition from that tournament to the meets against local teams, it might be natural for a team as good as Central to lose focus, but that simply wasn’t the case. Naisbitt said he made sure the players stayed engaged and found teams that could help them improve. “We have tournaments that are very competitive,” Naisbitt said. “Yes, when you go from playing state champion after state

champion there is a little drop-off, but we seek the best teams around. We played teams from Wisconsin, Michigan, and Minnesota and an important part of [staying focused] is to continue the competition that we saw.” The point of staying focused is to be ready for the state tournament. The Illinois state tournament allows each school to send two singles players and two doubles pairs. Naisbitt constructed his roster with Joyce and Lorenzini playing in the singles tournament, and pairing up Hagermoser with Heneghan and Grabill with senior Harold Martin for the doubles tournament. The singles and doubles tournaments have a championship bracket, which is for the players who haven’t lost, and a consolation bracket for players with one loss. A player or pair wins state by winning the championship bracket, a school wins state by accumulating the most points, which are awarded for each win, and scaled based on the bracket and round of the tournament. The max score a school can get is 60 points, which would occur when both the two singles and two doubles met each other in the final of their respective brackets. Both of the singles and both of the pairs made it to the semifinals after a relatively straightforward path to reach that round. Interestingly, Grabill and Martin beat a pair from Vernon Hills in the third round which included internet superstar David Dobrik, who was a junior at the time.

In the semifinals, Hagermoser and Heneghan won 6-4, 6-4 against a pair from Oak Park and Grabill and Martin won in 3 sets after losing the first against a pair from Stevenson. To keep the perfect score possible, both Joyce and Lorenzini needed to win. Joyce swept Jasper Koenen from St. Charles, but Lorenzini fell in the 3rd set by a heartbreakingly close score of 7 games to 6 against Eric Marbach from Wabonsie Valley. Grabill and Martin would win the doubles championship, while Joyce won singles and Lorenzini claimed the 3rd place game, giving Central a record-setting score of 59 points along with the state title. Naisbitt said that performance in the state tournament further solidified how talented their team was. “We had very few weaknesses,” Naisbitt said. “We missed having a sweep of the tournament by one point, and we set a record that will never be broken.” Ultimately, Central achieved results that hadn’t been done, which cemented them a place in Illinois high school tennis history. Naisbitt said he looks at that team fondly, and was happy to be along for the ride. “It really was one of those generational things,” Naisbitt said. “We just rose to the occasion, and that’s what the great players do, they just shine. We were a class act that would go along and showcase this great talent, and I was just blessed to be a part of it.”

Perspectives | 29

Senior Issue 217825 DA Column.indd May_2021_r2.indd 3 29

4/28/2021 5/10/2118:41:16 9:37 AM


30 | Senior Issue

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 30

5/10/21 9:37 AM


Senior Issue | 31

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 31

5/10/21 9:37 AM


Senior Bios

Hari Rao — Editor-in-Chief

Kritin Shanmugam — Head of Design

These past two years on Devils’ Advocate have been a blast. I have enjoyed the class itself — from writing about college admissions to the global pandemic, interviewing the Security staff to the Superintendent, and editing stories to critiquing designs. But, I have cherished the community even more — from deliberating ideas during brainstorms, coordinating team sweaters, celebrating Drop days, and treasuring the amazing friendships. I can confidently say this class has been the highlight of my highschool experience, even through remote learning. Generally for remote learning, it was a challenge to find a connection with peers in most classes. However, Advocate provided me that connection. Our bonds helped us through the roughest part of the year, and even then we continued to create magazines. I’m so proud to have led this amazing team filled with talented and hard-working individuals. They will all go on to do amazing things, and I cannot wait to see.

If I told my freshman-year-self that I would be a part of the Devils’ Advocate, I would never have believed it. Yet, I joined the magazine in my junior year in hopes of continuing my work in graphic design. It was fun using my creativity and skills to put stories on paper and bring them to life. I am also proud that I was able to mentor the other designers into doing the same. My role as a designer was definitely a large part of my experience in Devils’ Advocate, but it will not be the only thing I will remember about this class. It would be impossible to forget all the great people who made this class as special as it is. We challenged ourselves by discussing the various parts of the magazine, like brainstorming topics, taking cover photos, or deciding what kind of food to get delivered. I still remember changing designs past midnight one day, sharing my screen through Zoom to Hari and Loukas. We all became a tight-knit family through our work in creating magazines. I am grateful that I decided to join this class, as the experiences I’ve had in this class are irreplaceable. This year wasn’t exactly the ending I was hoping for, but the Devils’ Advocate came out stronger than ever. Good luck to next year’s team!

32 | Senior Bios

seniorbios.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 2 32

5/6/21 10:13 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


Nathaniel Bittner — Managing Editor

Ailish Lyman — Managing Editor

At first a class that I was thinking of switching out of early junior year, Devils’ Advocate and the journalism team changed my life in a way that no other class at Hinsdale Central has, and for that I am thankful. Back in August of junior year, I remember walking into room 249 with a cluster of emotions. The massive room crowded with rows of slick, silver computers can be intimidating, and with no friends or recognizable faces in sight, I was quite literally dreading the experience. Flash forward a couple years and now I’m the managing editor for Devils’ Advocate, and when I look around the same old crowded room, all I see is friends, friends that have meshed together to become a family. This class has given me so much more than I ever could have imagined. So many lessons and experiences that I plan to take with me past my graduation and into my future. I could go on and on about Advocate. I can talk about all the amazing memories, all the pictures taken, all the stories written, even the fact that I wrote about it as the main topic in my personal essay, the list goes on. More now than ever I’m so happy that junior year Nate chose to stick with Devils’ Advocate. It ended up being a decision that I will likely remember for the rest of my life, and for that I am thankful.

Simply put, Devils’ Advocate class has been one of the most enriching and fulfilling experiences of my high school career. Walking into Journalism 1 class my sophomore year, I had NO idea what to expect. I’ve never been a huge fan of school, especially classes that actually challenge me both academically and socially. But the Devils’ Advocate newsmagazine gave me a reason not only to show up to school, but to want to. Whether it was buying cookies from Jewel Osco on a late Thursday night for drop day, or arguing over facetime with the other head editors regarding which topic to use for the editorial, this class has met and exceeded my expectations. I have met some of the most interesting people in and around the Hinsdale Central community, and I can’t wait for future Devils’ Advocate contributors to do the same. Good luck to the new head editors, I cannot wait to see our publication continue to evolve next year!

Senior Bios | 33

seniorbios.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 3 33

5/6/21 10:13 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


Caroline Cubbin — Copy Editor When I walked into Journalism 1 in the fall of my sophomore year, I had no idea what to expect. I knew I liked writing, but beyond that, I had no idea where that class would lead me. Through that class, I found that while I liked the writing we did in English class, journalism was something else entirely, and so I signed up to take Devils’ Advocate the following year. Over my two years as a section editor and then copy editor, I can honestly say that this class has been one of the most influential things in my high school experience. Not only have I met new people, developed my writing skills, and experienced new things, I’ve also discovered what I want to pursue in the future. I’ve learned and grown as a person due to the influence of Ms. Lopez, my classmates, and the people I’ve had a chance to talk to. Not only have my experiences in the past two years changed my perspective, but they’ve also given me a chance to voice the thoughts of others through the profiles and features I’ve written. People often say that the high school experience depends on what you make of it, and at the end of my senior year, I wouldn’t trade my experiences in Devils’ Advocate for anything.

Lainey Harvey — Copy Editor While this year has not turned out to be what any of us had planned, I am proud to say many positive stories and events have come out of it. I am happy that Devils’ Advocate published four issues while adapting to many new schedules and changing calendars. I was in Journalism 1 my sophomore year, where I started to become interested in writing stories and taking pictures. My junior year I wrote and took pictures for the magazine in Journalism 2 Honors and started thinking about continuing in journalism in college. This year, I am a copy editor where I lead the club with my partner Caroline and we help wherever we are needed. I have met many great people through this class and I think this class has given me such a great opportunity to work on a real publication.

5QƂLC$W\GNKUt*GCFQH2JQVQITCRJ[ I didn’t think that the time would come when I had to write this. The past year has been one of the most challenging, thrilling, and exciting years of my life. I know that Hinsdale Central has prepared me for the most challenging obstacles to come. And Devils’ Advocate has taught me hard work, perseverance, and most importantly how much fun a class can be. I started Journalism 1 three years ago with Ms. Lopez, and I could not be more thankful that she has stuck with us to drop one last copy with the class of 2021. I would have never thought that in this class I would meet some of the most hardworking, talented, and most optimistic people in the school. Seniors, as we head into the last days of school, I look back and think about how many wonderful opportunities this class and Hinsdale Central has given me. And most of all I want to thank room 249 for the friends, drop day parties, and camera that have all let me find a part of me I would have never found without Devils’ Advocate.

34 | Senior Bios

seniorbios.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 4 34

5/6/21 10:13 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


John Olsen — Section Editor While my role has been to write during my time on this publication, I wouldn’t say my writing has been the aspect of this class that I’ve enjoyed the most. Instead, writing has been the launchpad for the true gratification that I will leave this newsmagazine with. That gratification is the people. The people that I’ve not only had the pleasure of working with to consistently produce such a labor-intensive product, but also the people who I’ve been able to talk to for a few minutes and see a bit of the world from their perspective. Whether it’s been meeting with administrators and teachers throughout the district and understanding how they’re working to get the best education to every student, or seeing the joy on athletes’ faces as they reminisce on some of their greatest triumphs, I’ve loved every interaction. Getting to facilitate these conversations and then publishing an article about them is what drives me to pursue journalism as a career, and I will look back fondly on these last two years in growing my appreciation for storytelling.

%GFTC,C\C[GTNKt5GEVKQP'FKVQT While this year has not turned out to be what any of us had planned, I am proud to say many positive stories and events have come out of it. I am happy that Devils’ Advocate published four issues while adapting to many new schedules and changing calendars. I was in Journalism 1 my sophomore year, where I started to become interested in writing stories and taking pictures. My junior year I wrote and took pictures for the magazine in Journalism 2 Honors and started thinking about continuing in journalism in college. This year, I am a copy editor where I lead the club with my partner Caroline and we help wherever we are needed. I have met many great people through this class and I think this class has given me such a great opportunity to work on a real publication.

Grace Erwin — Section Editor Being involved in journalism at Central has been one of the most important parts of my high school experience. From the very first story I wrote for the magazine, to navigating how to continue publishing during a pandemic, to trying to re-learn inDesign, I am truly thankful for every moment I have spent in the program. I signed up for Journalism 1 at the end of my freshman year because I knew I enjoyed writing and would find the class interesting. I had no idea the friendships I would form and lessons I would learn not only about writing, but designing, editing, and working as a team. Before joining, I had no idea what I wanted to do in college, but now I plan on majoring in journalism and making a career out of it. I am so proud of everything we have accomplished in the past few years and will forever be grateful for the memories made throughout my time in DA.

Senior Bios | 35

seniorbios.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 5 35

5/6/21 10:13 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


.QWMCU$G\CPKUt&GUKIP'FKVQT Beginning of junior year I selected to join Devil’s Advocate out of pure curiosity. My friends and I thought this class would be a fun, easy elective to have for one year, but what we didn’t know was the impact this class was going to have on all of our high school experiences. I became a designer for the magazine not knowing how to work most of the applications. Through a couple rough months of indesign I finally was able to get the hang of things. And I can’t thank anyone else other than the new best friends I was able to make who helped me through these rough times. Our class was the dream team for magazines, not only because we were all good at designing and writing, but because our class became a family. If you were to tell me I was in a journalism class my freshman year I would’ve said you are crazy. This class was something completely out of my comfort zone, and I took the risk of taking it, and this risk was the best thing that could have happened during my high school years.

,COKG2GEKNWPCUt&GUKIP'FKVQT To be quite honest when I first set foot in this class earlier this year (of course I didn’t actually step into a classroom, being that we were on zoom) I hated it. I had spent my past years walking past the Devil’s Advocate room and always hearing loud voices, laughing, and jokes being made. It upset me that this very social class that I was so excited to take seemed nothing of the sort when moved online. However, after numerous breakout room interruptions, group chat rants, and poking fun (with love, of course) at our dear head ed, I can definitely say this class has taught me a lot about the importance of adapting to the circumstances around us and to continue forming relationships in new ways. Oh! I also designed a thing or two for the magazine. It was fun to try to turn the beautiful work from our writers, into something (hopefully) equally as beautiful to look at.

Jessie Wang — Section Editor I joined Devil’s Advocate my senior year because I was interested in trying something new. Ms. Lopez was my teacher for AP Lang my Junior year and I had heard good things about the class. Although this year was a bit different, it has been an insightful and exciting experience. The overall collaborative environment of class plays a huge role in the creation of the magazine. Over the course of this year, My partner Killian and I have written about the presidential election, the pandemic’s effect on local businesses, seniors who graduated early, and mental health. There are many moving partsfrom designer to writers to photographers- that all come together. It’s very exciting to both participate and watch this process unfold. Being part of this publication has given me the opportunity to interview amazing people. It has also allowed me to gain perspective on not only Hinsdale Central, but also the larger community. I personally really enjoy writing and I hope to continue writing in college. As my time at Hinsdale Central comes to an end, I strongly believe that joining Devil’s Advocate was one of my better decisions. 36 | Senior Bios

seniorbios.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 6 36

5/6/21 10:13 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


&TGY/GT\t5GEVKQP'FKVQT Hinsdale Central has without a doubt lived up to its reputation. It welcomed me in a timid freshman with no direction and turned me into a focused & driven Devil eager to start the next phase of my life. While this past year has had many hurdles, I think we all came out a little stronger than before. Prior to this year, I had little to no writing experience but now, I am more confident than ever. Not only have I learned new skills, but I also got to know a great group of people who are all incredibly supportive of each other. They have pushed me to achieve things I had once thought impossible and for that, I am very grateful. One of my few regrets is that I did not join the class earlier in my high school career. Here’s to the class of 2021, whatever life throws at you, take it on as a Red Devil would.

Ricky Saghal — Section Editor My time in Advocate has been simply amazing. I have made so many new friends, and it has improved my writing skills a ton. I have built so many new relationships with people that I didn’t know before and it has been an amazing experience to make new memories with people. Advocate made me a much more confident person, when we had to do interviews for the first time I was terrified, but as I got more comfortable and had more practice it became a very natural thing to do and made it much easier to talk to people. It has also been very neat to see the differences in my first ever writing piece to my last. The growth that I have made is all due to my teacher Ms. Lopez and all of my peers in Advocate who pushed me to become a better writer. It has been a super cool experience to work with all of my different partners because they all made me a lot better in different ways whether it was, interview questions or writing a story they always find a way for you to improve yourself even in ways that you don’t think that you could have ever imagined. Overall my experience in Advocate was extremely positive and highly recommend it for anyone that is considering joining it.

)TCPV/KECNGVVKt2JQVQITCRJGT During my time at Hinsdale Central, I have learned what it takes to be a Red Devil. Being a Red Devil takes a huge amount of grit, which can turn one into a mentally tough enough person for anything. Devil’s advocate was a great experience for me to join into. I had no idea what the class would be like when I joined, but it was nothing short of fun people, zoom calls, and new relationships. My job for Devil’s Advocate was to take photos for the articles. Although it wasn’t the hardest job in the class, it was very mindopening for me because I learned the different ways to take pictures and the different ways to make the quality look better. I have enjoyed my time as a photographer for Devil’s Advocate very much, I wish I had joined earlier!

Senior Bios | 37

seniorbios.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 7 37

5/6/21 10:13 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


50+ 26-50 11-25 6-10 2-5 1 0

CLASS OF 2021

38 | Senior Issue

map.inddDA2May_2021_r2.indd 38 217825

5/10/21 5/6/21 7:06 9:37 PM AM


F

Senior Issue | 39

map.inddDA3May_2021_r2.indd 39 217825

5/10/21 5/6/21 7:06 9:37 PM AM


CLASS OF

2021

Here is where your seniors plan to take the next steps of their journey

ARIZONA Arizona State University Joshua Faine Avery Secola Rory Simon

University of Arizona

ALABAMA Auburn University A

Grace Dolci Jack Fendon Riley O’Connor Alex Ryan Lindsey Theoharous

Kristina Burke Tessa Millman Meghan Webster

Samford University S Elizabeth Haarlow

University of Alabama U Boone Brackett Faedra Charlton-Perrin David Melvin Skylar Rusterberg Samuel Snodgrass

CALIFORNIA )b][I8IKQÅK=VQ^MZ[Q\a Emma Walsh

Chapman University Skylar Penland

Loyola Marymount University Corryn Baran

University of California, Los Angeles Raina Jain Anna Pellegrino

40 | By The Numbers

seniorlist.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 2 40

5/10/21 5/7/21 2:05 9:37 PM AM


University of California, Davis Sophie Aliaga Nicholas Makris

University of California, Santa Barbara Nikolle Pang

University of California, Santa Cruz Jackie Buccellato Matthew Lue

University of California, San Diego Alyssa Lim Gaia Quaranta

University of Southern California Chris Araujo Julia Cashman Rachit Das Lexi Klein

Santa Clara University Ann Waldo

San Diego State University Chloe Aquino

Stanford University Gianna Dugan Noah Islam

Kaylee Haleas Mara Levine Clare Moore Francesca Schiavetti Maddie Ward

University of Colorado, Denver Ben Ognibene

Yale University

Charlotte Callahan Derek Song

DELAWARE University of Delaware Tolu Akin

James Draddy Jaclyn Fowler

Georgia Institute of Technology

Kate Ursillo

ILLINOIS Augustana College Maya Conway Ricky Saghal

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA American University Isabel Sunderland

COLORADO

University of Colorado, Boulder

Nolan Lahmann Lily McCain Amelia Mo

of Georgia CONNECTICUTUniversity Emilie Meredith

Ethan Austermann Grace Erwin

Annie Ness Brooke Weeks

Emory University

Grace Clopton Amogh Mantri

George Washington University

Colorado State University

GEORGIA

Benedictine University Ayesha Fatima Bisma Haque Jibran Haque Yousuf Kamal Bilal Mohammed Aziz Sajed Yusuf Shakaib

Bradley University Aidan Bendera

College of DuPage

FLORIDA Rollins College John McClear

University of Miami Bella Reiser

IMG Academy Brian Daker

Marily Bergeron Danielle Borhardt Christian Boules Irizarry Breanna Candelaria Campbell Allan Caro Mailene Grace Cenidoza Colin Cook Emilio Davila Xitlali Garcia Abel Gomez Paola Gonzalez Shenay Gorth Mahir Husain By The Numbers | 41

seniorlist.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 3 41

5/10/21 5/7/21 2:05 9:37 PM AM


Madelyn Meyer Adam Nunez Juliana Ramos Danieliesse Santiago Christian Schloegel Dariya Tugsmandakh

Columbia College Chicago Snappy Shievitz

Concordia University Chicago Mikyra Appling

DePaul University Yusrah Ahmed Austin Beringer Quintin Craig Mildred Espinoza Alonso Guerrero Vanessa Merino Mohammad Raza Imam Shams Dylan Taylor Lila Thome

Illinois Institute of Technology Aisha Hafeez

Illinois State University Mitchell Davis Abby Didio Marco Grande Terence Luzano Maxwell Meyer Alexxis Toler

Loyola University at Chicago Loukas Bezanis Tochukwu Enekamma Alli Fuller Charlotte Froiland Akash Goel Naya Kelta Christine Kouria Anurathi Madasi Chris Martirano Edessa Parks Sophia Rahman Lauren Reighle Amelia Zayed Stephanie Zayed

Northern Illinois University Nikolette Nedic Lailah Othman Maria Sauer

North Central College Kajus Miliunas

Northwestern University Zayn Bajwa Linda Li John Olsen Nithin Reddy

Olivet Nazarene University Joline Eskander

School of the Art Institute of Chicago Samara Jaquez

University of Chicago Chloe Attlan Noor Myran Allie Yang

Lewis University Londyn Yusuf

University of Illinois at Chicago Nur-Fatima Akbar Hani Akhras Cindy Batyabar Merwin D’Souza Yasmina Eshac Jasmine Garg Aya Hassanein Cedra Jazayerli Kareem Kachlan Emaan Khan Brian Kim Dalya Laban Joseph Marek Sara Shenouda

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Moosa Ahmed Aryan Bahl Sam Balice Kian Bandukwala Alec Benjamin Marissa Berlin Becky Blake Carson Boggs Bo Bourlard Amaryah Chandler Gavin Chami Jason Chen

Ina Chess Nick Chung Grace Cole Sebas Davila Neel Donthamsetti 6WZI,]‫ٺ‬a Elizabeth Farah Lisa Ferrino Matilde Fugueroa-Carrillo Anastasia Georganas Emily Gottschalk Ethan Greenwald Olivia Guido Kyle Haggard Krishna Hota Hailey Herringshaw Matt Hester Jen Hou Noah Issa Brandon James Alex Jin Simran Karamchandani Ryan Kim Sarah Kizior Sharika Kottapali David Lacayo Henning Ley Marit Ley Shannon Lynch Carolyn Malloy Ashley Menendez Theodorus Mikhael Omar Nabelsi Akhilesh Pandravada Ava Pappas Aditya Patel Esha Patil Dennis Pavlyk Christopher Robinson Chris Schaub Matthew Schwab Ivan Shilov Talha Syed Kasia Treiber Karam Wafai Jessie Wang Colleen Yopp Hayder Zalzaleh Nathan Zock

INDIANA Ball State University Erkan Ozgen

Butler University Katherine Lindsey Jake Merlo

42 | By The Numbers

seniorlist.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 4 42

5/10/21 5/7/21 2:05 9:37 PM AM


Indiana University

Jake Adams Rudy Albores Tommy Ambrose Jack Arenberg Angelina Buonavolanto Mia Butterbach Catie Clark John Cornell Clay Cutinelli Jack Czerwiec Grant Fryzel Alex Fuchs Ava Gapinski Avi Goel Nick Grundberg Charlie Herbst AJ Hood Parker Jurgenson Alex Kalman DJ Kelly Kyle Kolke Alex Knoll Arjun Krishnan Tyler Lithgow Will McCarter Anna McCleary Drew McMillin ;PIÅS5MUWV Thea Merlo Nick Mulvihill Andy Munoz Annelise Osmundson Carolyn Saban Aashna Sawlani Anya Shah Carson Steere Maddie Tallard Kathleen Tobia Braden Triplett Parker Urick Tejas Visal Scott Xu Valeria Wilson

Purdue University Margaux Bouret Owen Bots Cullen Bradley Eric Brugge Albert Chen 2M‫ٺ‬ZMa+PMV )VVI+W‫ٺ‬Ma Sunny Deshpande Mason Giacchetti Andrew Helliwell Emma Kavuliak Joseph Luo Leonore McCarthy

Chigo Ojiako Johnny Taylor Alec Schmidt Graham Singer Angela Spegar Courtney Usher William Wong

Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology John Demakis

Saint Mary’s College Paige Lyons

KANSAS University of Kansas Anna Langan Grant Micaletti

KENTUCKY University of Kentucky Clay Cash Owen Jansen Jacob Marquez Joey Morris

Taylor University

LOUISIANA

University of Notre Dame

Tulane University

Britney Pappas

Anastasia Chibucos Christian Gambla Thomas Kusak Ben Newton Danny Schmelka Katherine Wilson

Valparaiso University Michael Neri

Wabash College Timothy Song

IOWA Iowa State University Bennett Willman

University of Iowa Stephanie Cochlan Adriana Davila Samantha Deering Kaitlyn Farra Tatum Flynn William Knapp Jacob Mazariegos Vincent Naccarato Ethan Pearson Jay Randle Julianne Roberts

St. Ambrose University Cameron Bryant Brandon Minor

Kiara Harrast Cassie Maine

MASSACHUSETTS Babson College Michael Tu

Boston College

Jack Doppke Faith Drescher Lauren Oleferchik Lisa Su

Harvard University Katrina Geiersbach

Northeastern University Lana Elzein Alexis Lincoln Lauren Witt Moses Yawe

Tufts University Quinn Cain

MAINE Bates College Saunders Thompson

By The Numbers | 43

seniorlist.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 5 43

5/10/21 5/7/21 2:05 9:37 PM AM


MICHIGAN Michigan State University William Arnarson Alaina Brixie Morgan Flach Grace Gits Katya Kuropas Andrew Perez Cyril Philip Reese Racila Camryn Saltzman Claire Sciortino Hannah Seymour

University of Michigan David Bynan Amer Goel Samantha Gonzalez Rei Hemmer Amir Jawed Ajay Jejurikar Lais Najjar Luke Rosenblum Ella Sieger

University of Missouri Cole Ciastko Lizzy Cunningham Melaina Harvey Katelyn Johns Kayla Luther Ailish Lyman Michael Melillo Jack Salerno

University of Missouri Kansas City Rayaan Rauf

Washington University in St. Louis Jack Costello John Fakouri Harry Gao Bilal Khan Sidh Leekha Hari Rao John Tischke Roslyn Tischke

MINNESOTA MONTANA Macalaster College Courtney Brown

University of Minnesota

Montana State University Virginia Hurst Charlie Fuller

Cole Castellon Ben Harris Henry Jonas

Cornell University Brooke Cooper Qing Dang Mikhail Essa Akshay Undevia

Eastman School of Music Josh Budziak

Fordham University Blake Baird Margaret Geier Meghan Malec Bridget O’Kane

Iona College

Christopher Richie

New York University Victor Bouret Emily Zhang Kaitlyn Zhu

Niagara University Ben Sylvester

Pace University Isabel Peña

Rochester Institute of Technology Megan McCormick

Sarah Lawrence College University of Saint Thomas William Shirley

MISSISSIPPI University of Mississippi Taylor Cavo Finnegan Van Horn

MISSOURI Saint Louis University Noah Epstein Emma Linane Myriam Sakho-Castanou Sara Schuleit

NEBRASKA Creighton University Gabi Camara Andrew Johnston

Caroline Cubbin

The New School Jamie Pecilunas Nour Shalaby

University of Rochester William Cho Nyme Hussan

NEW YORK Colgate University Michael Brescia Audrey Giltner

Columbia University Charlie Sessa

NORTH CAROLINA Duke University Heather Raslan

44 | By The Numbers

seniorlist.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 6 44

5/10/21 5/7/21 2:05 9:37 PM AM


Wake Forest University Jackson Steigbigel

OHIO Bowling Green State University Nathan Brooks

Case Western Reserve University Madeline Maduzia Apple Patel Anirudh Raghuvir Ansh Shah

Denison University Ellie Miller

Miami University Alexandria Arendt Nate Bittner Alena Givens Mary Grant Julia Joergenrud Ryan Kelly Greer Lagor Megan McDonnell Michael McCormick Jessie Miller Ryan Orput Theoni Verven Diego Waelter Anne Williams

Oberlin College

Lia Fawley Cadence Parker-Briones

The Ohio State University Ava O’Hea John Rivera

University of Cincinnati Dylan Lail

University of Dayton Ava Alessi Nora Berger Andrew Bergin Lauren Counihan Timmy Lynch

Mia Micalleti Eli Sobecki

PENNSYLVANIA Carnegie Mellon University Anuha Parvateni

Penn State University Ava Phillips

University of Pennsylvania

TENNESSEE Belmont University Sophie Biancalana Justin Tatooles Demetra Theotikos

University of Tennessee Ryan Ables Ella Cibinski Emma Elliot Julia Paulman Sam Snyder

Kaitlin Mrksich

University of Pittsburgh Emily Venis

Vanderbilt University Dov Chen Kai Dubauskas Megan Michaels

Villanova University Abigail Chute Melanie Quinones

RHODE ISLAND Brown University

TEXAS Baylor University Ella Kisluk Olivia Widtfeldt

Rice University

Abby Anitnossi Kritin Shanmugam

Jay Amin

Southwestern University

SOUTH CAROLINA Clemson University Oscar Antanaitis Chiara Gregor Noela Musil

College of Charleston Hayley Johnson Haley Letts

Furman University ;WÅRI*]bMTQ[

University of South Carolina Angelina Berti Natalia Berti Kacey Schlais Cayden Torsberg

Abigail Ryan

Southern Methodist University Michael Bradley Ben Rasmussen

Texas Christian University Riley Boshardt Jane Cashman Michael Franko Luke Gatewood John King Nicholas Mittelstdt ;PIVVWV;\Q‫ټ‬MIZ

University of Texas at Austin Zoya Anjarwala Sophie Burns Leah Cecchini Ava Loughlin Elliot Welch

Universal Tech Institute Max Dukler

By The Numbers | 45

seniorlist.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 7 45

5/10/21 5/7/21 2:05 9:37 PM AM


VERMONT Champlain College Miles Regal

VIRGINIA College of William & Mary Olivia Ostrowski

Hampton University 3MVLITT/ZQ‫ٻ‬V

University of Virginia Elle Gurland Jenni Liu

Allison Kinsey Sophie Lundmark Piyush Mekla Abhiram Nettem Mesha Patil Emma Schackart Sarah Rab Rahul Ravisundar Maria Rivera Alegra Waverly Maximo Zenner

GAP YEAR 2IUM[/ZQ‫ٻ‬V Isa Hitchens Ryan Koschik Vincent Lynch Michelle Shen Mia Thompson Inan Anirudhan

WASHINGTON MILITARY University of Washington Paige Michal Savita Sundar

WISCONSIN Carthage College Emma Gillman

Marquette University Caitlin Brankin Jackson Carl Matthew Kavanagh Rohan Malhotra Claire Noonan

Milwaukee School of Engineering Arthur Andersen

University of Wisconsin Madison Luna Bitar Sam Blankenburg Catcher Brown Matilde Camplone Abby Clark Sam Fuchs Dilan Garg Michael Gentleman Thomas Graeb

Marco Grande Ryan Keck Harrison Weber

ATHLETICS Soccer

Ryan Koschik - FC Málaga City Academy in Spain

Hockey

Zachary Laskowski - Juniors Hockey

ABROAD Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham Vignesh Iyer

McGill University Anika Holur

New York University Shanghai Maia Groom

Sheridan College Olga Pahomea

TRANSITION CENTER Syed Kahn Meghan McCarty Alexander Rhodes

PREFER NOT TO DISCLOSE Mohammed Ahmadi Emily Alter Ramzey Douedari Yasmin Sawaf

UNDECIDED Evelyn Fuller Yahya Junejo Mathilda Kokoszka Saule Vegelyte Zeke Ware

UNREPORTED Rimsha Ahmed Madeline Anglin Daniel Aviles Ethan Awalt Nicholas Barrios Sam Benitez Sebastian Burnette Federico Cedillo Lijia Chen Brian Conway Jessic Dalicandro Aiden Danhausen Brun Paola De Castro Jacob Duba Anthony Egli Gabriel Enriquez Aiden Escobedo Chanyce Felton Sebatian Garcia James Garvey John Greager 3IZQ[UI/ZQ‫ٻ‬V Blake Haines Stephanie Hayden Brandon Hernanadez Kaylie Hernandez Allie Hildreth Alex Joyner Amanda Kassl Lily Kassl Ryan Katsis Nicholas Kelecich Alexi Kendle Daniel Konopka Tomas Kowalchuk Austin Krzysik Rhiannon Kuhr Nishta Kumar Colin Langs

46 | By The Numbers

seniorlist.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 8 46

5/10/21 5/7/21 2:05 9:37 PM AM


Jaylen Laws William Lindsay Adam Lubic Johnathon Malepe ;WÅI5I[WWL Marta Matamala Gonzalez James McGann Paule Medziute Filip Milanovic Sean Millman Sophia Miranda Mario Monsalve Apiwan Muenhawong Khalid Mufti Ryan Murphy Shubham Naim Smit Nagar Louis Naphin Emmanuel Narcisse Sama Narsif Ronald Neal Michael Neri Sara Nikolic Jessie Nouna Katherine Novosilec Julia Patacsil Veljko Pesic Andres Perez Isabel Peters Jennifer Phillipneri Brian Phlamm Tautvydas Pikalauskas Stephen Podracky Sohan Ramakrishna Gustavo Reyes Rodriquez Dylan Ross Jacob Rothkopf Ryan Ruan Dexter Rush Angelie Sanguinsin Salsabeel Saleh Carlos Santana Brian Schilder Nadine Shaher Braden Sheehan Dayyan Siddiqi Gia Simon Amirabella Skaria Jalen Smith David Suarez Sean Sullivan Christopher Thompson Faith Thompson Koby Turrentine Jai Vardhan Peiyao Wang Dean Waters Lorraine Wilson Turtogtokh Zolzaya

CONGRATS! &Ma^=^obel Advocate Staff

Correction: Kashif A. Carter - University of Cambridge, U.K.

*Although Devils’ Advocate tried extremely hard to contact each and every senior through Google forms, social media, email, and phonecalls, we were unable to do so. Furthermore, we sincerely apologize for any unintentional errors that may be present. This section also represents those who chose not to report where they were attending or who where undecided at the time of publication.

By The Numbers | 47

seniorlist.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 9 47

5/10/21 5/7/21 2:05 9:37 PM AM


Senior Superlatives Here are your picks for the 2021 senior superlatives! We asked the seniors chosen to submit a themed photo of themselves that encapsulates their superlatives. Enjoy!

“MOST LIKELY TO BE PRESIDENT”

“MOST LIKELY TO BE A FORTUNE 500 CEO”

Justin Tatooles

Ajay Jejurikar

48 | Superlatives

superlatives.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 2 48

5/6/21 10:15 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


“BEST SMILE”

“BEST HAIR”

Katrina Geiersbach

;kb]`^mHDZg^

“NEXT DR. FAUCI”

“MOST LIKELY TO BECOME A PROFESSIONAL ATHLETE”

Derek Song

Michael Brescia Superlatives | 49

superlatives.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 3 49

5/6/21 10:15 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


“BEST FRIENDS”

“MOST LIKELY TO WIN AN EGOT”

Cedra Jazayerli & Heather Raslan

Sophie Biancalana

“CLASS CLOWN”

“MOST LIKELY TO WIN A BAKING SHOW”

Jamie Pecilunas

Roslyn Tischke

50 | Superlatives

superlatives.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 4 50

5/6/21 10:15 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


“MOST LIKELY TO BE A REALITY TV STAR”

Lexi Klein and Angelina Buonavolanto

“BEST DRESSED”

Matilde Camplone

“MOST LIKELY TO BE THE FIRST PERSON ON MARS”

“MOST LIKELY TO BE LATE TO GRADUATION”

Julia Cashman

Heather Raslan Superlatives | 51

superlatives.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 5 51

5/6/21 10:16 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


“CRAZIEST DRIVER”

“BEST DRIVER”

Samantha Gonzalez

Ann Waldo

“MOST LIKELY TO NEVER LEAVE HINSDALE”

“MOST CHANGED”

Elizabeth Haarlow

Hayder Zalzaleh

52 | Superlatives

superlatives.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 6 52

5/6/21 10:16 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


“CLASS MOM”

“CLASS DAD”

Brooke Cooper

DJ Kelly

“PROM QUEEN”

“PROM KING”

Jamie Peculinas

Ajay Jejurikar Superlatives | 53

superlatives.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 7 53

5/6/21 10:16 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


EYE OF THE DEVIL Central students share their promposal successes

Photos by Derek song, Harry Gao, Raina Jain, Cassie Maine, Olivia Guido, John McClear, Olivia Widtfeldt, Sam Snyder, Chloe Aquino, Joey Morris, Amogh Mantri, Maddie Maduzia, Alexandria Arendt, Jonny Bunales, Timmy Lynch, Maria Rivera, Alli Fuller Jack Nick, Kristina Burke and Zeke Ware

54| Senior Issue

217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 54

5/10/21 9:37 AM


american family care

®

The Right Care. Right Now.

Accurate 15 minute COVID-19 Tests COVID-19 Antibody Tests On-sight Labs State of the Art Diagnostic Imaging Allergy Treatment

21)IeZbgÛ^e]K]bgPbeehp[khhd 630-647-5993 afcurgentcare.com

Immunization Vaccines

advert.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 1 55

2/22/21 9:37 5/10/21 2:29 AM PM


HOW TO:

Cedra Jazayerli and Heather Raslan celebrating their college decisions on May 1.

SURVIVE HIGH SCHOOL

An Open Letter to the 822s, 823s, 824s, and subsequent years after that. We have survived another dysfunctional year together. Zoom classes, hybrid learning, last-minute schedule changes, and cancelled school events have all encompassed the whirlwind of a year. For seniors, this year was a chance for us to say goodbye to the last four years, a chance to see our teachers, our classrooms, and our peers for one last time before we embark on the next phase of our lives. And although this year was not what anyone wanted, nor could they have predicted, I think it encompasses the nature of the 821s as being one of the most resilient students. I have reflected a lot on my four years at Hinsdale Central. I remember feeling so overwhelmed but ambitious my freshman year when I frontloaded my classes with all honors. Honors Biology and Honors

World History were the epitome of my first year and the foundation for solid study habits and an upper level type course. Hinsdale Central is known for its competitive student body and the eagerness for which many students strive for academic eliteness is contagious. I forced myself to succumb to those predisposed expectations and knew that I could reach for the top. There is no how-to guide for how to survive high school. And there definitely is no how-to guide for how to survive high school during a pandemic and post-pandemic society that has witnessed more social catastrophes and bizarre events than in any modern year. I have not mastered the art of being a student during these unusual times, but I have taken this opportunity, and this platform, to try to keep myself sane and perhaps a few of you as well. This column started out as a self-care motivated, anxiety induced goal to better myself physically, emotionally and mentally. I wrote about the benefits of running consistently, the lifestyle changes of being vegan, ways to combat winter blues, and overall how to be better students while also feeling like better people. Now, I know I have no authority on many of these points, but through multiple self-directed experiments and personal discovery, I found my changes to be both effective and sustainable. They are healthy lifestyle habits that I hope to carry with me onto the next phase of my life and I am so happy with how it turned out. I want to leave a few things that I came to understand as the years went by at Hinsdale Central to anyone who is struggling in finding their place, finding their motivation, or simply in need of that extra encouragement

by Cedra Jazayerli designed by Kritin Shanmugam

to tell them it will all be worth it in the end. Throw yourself into everything. It is ok to be nervous but don’t let that dictate your life. Join clubs of all different interests to see where your passions lie. You will regret not being involved in more things. At the same time , don’t follow the pack. Find things that are unique to you and that you enjoy. Don’t feel obligated to be in something that everyone else is. There is something here for everyone so remain true to yourself. Don’t worry about things you can’t control. Those are unnecessary stressors that have no implication on your future. Let things go easily and move forward. Have a long term goal that is outlined with small, short term goals to keep you focused. It is easy to lose motivation and disregard things of insignificance. Push forward and remind yourself of your aspirations. Live in the moment. We, as humans, are constantly working towards the next big thing, the next accomplishment, the next thing to validate our success. After four years at Hinsdale Central, I feel like I have done my time in high school, as though there is not anything I could possibly add to my narrative. But when I look back, I realize high school got cut short for so many of us with the pandemic, and the events and memories we looked forward to since freshman year were taken away from us. So to the students who have just started their time at Central, or the juniors who are itching to leave, take it from us to enjoy the moment, savor your time here, because you truly don’t know what you have got until it’s gone.

56 | Senior Issue

cedracolumn 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd (1).indd 1 56

5/10/21 5/6/21 4:21 9:37 PM AM


UNSOLICITED ADVICE ENTER NEXT YEAR AS YOUR BEST SELF by Ailish Lyman and Grace Erwin designed by Kritin Shanmugam illustrations by Rania Arain

1

Find Activities That You Enjoy! Finding fun hobbies or getting involved in clubs is a great way to keep yourself motivated and busy during the school year. Whether it’s an artistic endeavor, new sport, or part time job, putting yourself out there and stepping out of your comfort zone is important for self improvement. The ever growing list of clubs at Central combined with the abundance of other extracurriculars provides many opportunities to find the right fit for you. I know sometimes it can feel easier to sit around and watch TV, but according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, keeping a healthy balance of enjoyable pastimes and time for relaxation is essential to your growth as a person. If you can keep pushing yourself to try new things and engage in new activities, you might develop new skills such as leadership, competitiveness, creativity, and strong work ethic. You may be surprised at what you enjoy spending your time doing and look forward to each week.

2

Surround Yourself With Good People! Whether it be friends or family members, it’s important to surround yourself with people who make you a better person. However, this statement is most often easier said than done, especially for hormonal teenagers who just want to fit in. I think that almost everyone has had an experience where they’ve been brought down in one way or another by the people closest to them. It’s important to consistently recognize and evaluate how you’re being influenced by those around you and whether or not those relationships are healthy. According to the Reflect and Refresh Organization, “by prioritizing meaningful friendships, you ensure that you’re surrounded with good people who will go through all the ups and downs with you.” It’s a natural part of life for people to grow apart over time, and it doesn’t mean that you can’t appreciate the fond memories you have with one another. Continue to stay true to yourself and do what is going to make you the happiest, with whomever that may be.

3

$G%QPƂFGPV In this day and age, it can be hard to ignore the abundance of Instagram posts, Snapchat stories, and Pinterest boards full of people setting impossible standards. We naturally strive to achieve this unattainable level of perfection, especially as teenagers in high school. “Teenage Girls are Facing Impossible Standards” published by CNN, stated that according to a University of California-Los Angeles study, female college freshmen have never been lonelier or less happy. However, it is crucial to keep the artificiality of social media in mind. Anyone can edit a picture or ask their friends to look happy for the sake of a Snapchat story. But keeping a clear perspective on the reality of the internet can help bring your confidence up. Living for yourself and not for the opinions of others is a surefire way to raise your self esteem and overall demeanor. Don’t be afraid to wear that new outfit, or ask that girl out in your class, or sing in front of the school at the next talent show. We miss so many opportunities because we’re worried about what everyone will think, but we forget that they’re probably too busy thinking about themselves to even notice our insecurities. All in all, having lots of entertaining hobbies, keeping a positive group of people around, and staying confident are some of the best ways to go into the next school year feeling like your best self.

Senior Issue | 57

unsolicitedadvice.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 1 57

5/7/21 12:38 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM


Goodbye Letters Dear Class of 2021, If I was a fan of “Friends”, then I’d probably call this school year’s episode “The One Where We Learned We Each Had More to Us Than We Thought”. Even the most fortunate of us has gone through extended social distancing and remote learning, and it has been tough. It wasn’t always pretty, but I saw a lot of you making the best of it. I saw new levels of independence and adaptability. I saw a lot of determination and a willingness to cut people some slack when they were having a tough time. As rough as it has been for some of you, we are all making our way to the other side of it. Give yourself some credit for that, and draw on it the next time things get difficult. My sincere best wishes as you leave to start a new chapter. Sincerely,

Mr. Doll

Congratulations! You’ve made it! Many will try and define your time in high school by the past 14 months, but remember they were so much more. This has been a 12 year journey of ups and downs. Along the way you have developed perseverance, resilience, toughness, and hopefully some compassion for what others are going through. Take these with you. I’m sure you have also made mistakes and have things you would have changed – learn from those moments and become better for it. The next step in your journey will be marked by the same ups and downs. Embrace the challenges and continue to pursue excellence in all you do. We are so proud of you and look forward to seeing all of the great things you do in the future! You are always a Red Devil! All the best,

And here we are, more than a year into a global pandemic that shook up all of our worlds in ways that we couldn’t even previously fathom. While life does seem more optimistic than it did this time last year, this doesn’t diminish the losses that you’ve experienced. There is still so much that you all have missed out on over the past year, events and rite of passages that you rightfully earned as your senior year progressed. While I’m sure missing out on these moments is disappointing, I hope that you were able to mine some good out of this past year, good that you can draw upon as you move into the next stages of your life. I know that I have been impressed at the amount of grace, resilience, empathy, and kindness that you exhibited over the past year. These are the qualities, that if you choose to cultivate them, will carry you far. In my life, I’ve learned that two things, hard work and being a good human, are simple behaviors we can enact daily to try and shape our world for the better. As you move forward into your future, I cannot wait to see the ways you will continue to make your positive imprint on this world. Congratulations, Class of 2021! Go forth and shine! Sincerely,

Ms. Tosh

I am really going to miss your class! Over the past fifteen months, I have seen you respond in amazing ways to all manner of hardships. You’ve figured out how to serve others, how to stand up for what you believe in, and how to give each other and the adults in your life grace. Thank you so, so much for all of that. Farewell, and keep being good people. Sincerely,

Brian Griffin

Mr. Wilbur

58 | Teacher Letters

goodbye.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 2 58

5/10/21 5/3/21 7:00 9:37 PM AM


From: Teachers To: Class of 2021 CONGRATULATIONS! I am so proud of everything you have accomplished! This has been one crazy year and you all have shown such strength and resilience. It has been such an honor and privilege to teach you. For many of you, room 234, has become a place where you can freely express your ideas and beliefs on current events, prepare for mock trials, see your name on the hall of fame wall, rehearse for an upcoming speech tournament, or simply catch up in between classes. I am so honored to have been even the smallest part of your high school experience. Thank you for the memories, laughs, and happy tears. Congratulations... and as always, MAKE GOOD CHOICES!

From pivoting from schedule to schedule, learning from home, the classroom, and your backyards, learning in masks and social distance, your resilience and good humor has impressed the heck out of me! Thanks for always being patient and kind with me as I also navigated uncharted territory. And as you look back on this year, remember what Tony Stark said, “It’s not about how much we lost. It’s about how much we have left” - and you, you have so much left to give, to do, to love, to laugh about. Congratulations and best wishes! Sincerely,

Keep in touch. Love, Mrs. Saunders

Mrs. Hoeksema

18 years ago you were born into a world where Apple launched Itunes but there were no videos uploaded onto YouTube yet, JK Rowling released “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” and everyone read it as an actual book with pages, and there was no such thing as a tweet or an Instagram post. Throughout the last 18 years you’ve grown up in a rapidly changing world defined by the technology that has shaped you. However, hopefully this last year has been a reminder that nothing beats being together with other people in person, that your face is more beautiful than your ceiling fan, and your resilience will allow you to overcome any challenge. Where will you and this world be 18 years from now? This next chapter is still to be written but I have total confidence that you all will continue to have a positive impact on others and make the communities you live in a better place!

Years from now, when you tell your story to young people in your life, will they believe you when you tell them you stopped going into the building at the end of your junior year or the number of strange ways you “attended” high school your senior year? Maybe. But today, you have learned to appreciate the little things that you missed at times this year: crowded hallways, cheering at games, socializing in class, and hanging out with large groups of friends. You are a special class of students. . . you embody perseverance, humor and grace on top of all of your other amazing qualities. We can’t wait to see what amazing things you go on to do after high school. We are proud to call you Red Devils. Now. . . go get ‘em, seniors! Make us proud, be kind to each other, and enjoy your next adventure! Sincerely,

Enjoy your next adventure,

Mrs. May

Mrs. Patel Teacher Letters | 59

goodbye.indd 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 3 59

5/10/21 5/3/21 7:00 9:37 PM AM


1.indd 1 217825 DA May_2021_r2.indd 60

5/5/21 10:17 5/10/21 9:37 AM PM

Profile for Devils Advocate

Devils' Advocate May 2021  

Devils' Advocate May 2021  

Advertisement

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded