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M o n o L a ke T r i p By Jasmine Vo Guest Reporter On September 20, 2012, seven WCTA students endeavored to conduct a water-study of Mono Lake. On a three day trip, the students first camped near Inyo National Park in California and visited the Obsidian Dome. In 1941 the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power decided to use the lake’s tributary streams as water sources for CA. The lack of fresh water flowing into the lake has made the salinity rise to the point where it has become 2.5 times saltier than the ocean. By 1995, the water levels of the lake dropped forty vertical feet. Recognizing the dire consequences of further water depletion, a small group of people began designing their fight against California’s water district. After a long struggle of years, a compromise was made, resulting in a decision by the federal court in CA. Mono Lake has one of the most diverse ecosystems. No fish reside in the lake; however, countless alkali flies, brine shrimp, and algae reside within its depths.


Photo Credit: Francisco Virella

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W C TA R o c k s PBL

By Haddar Ben-Shimon Features Editor Everyone sits back in their seats to hear which group in the room won for the best Project Based Learning (PBL), crossing their fingers behind their backs and holding their breath. Everyone sighs while the winning group cheers. They won and get compete with other winning groups to sell their business. “I was fortunate enough to be grouped with some very creative and resourceful team-mates. Through constant collaboration, we came up with the many great ideas that formed our business,” said senior Dean Cornejo. During this PBL, students were put into random groups and had to create a business based on the five core values they create. “Unlike most students I spoke with, I am not one to complain about being placed in a random group. Part of being a leader involves being able to work with people who you may not know very well. This is a trait that is exercised when being placed in a random group,” said Cornejo. His group created a business called Shaggy Chic a veterinary clinic, grooming center, spa, day-care center, and boarding center for pets. “Our core values are: personality is paramount, to be informed is to be prepared, respect yourself in order to respect others, reap the benefits of selflessness, and exceeding your limits will result in a better you,” said Cornejo. The PBL was a two day project on Thurs., Sept. 27 and Fri., Sept. 28. On the second day, groups had to present their business to other students and teachers, also known as “sharks”.

Photo Credit: Francisco Virella

Photo Credit: Francisco Virella

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Homecoming Pics: Pg 6

Sandusky is Guilty: Pg 5

Day of the Dead: Pg 3

W h i t n ey By Carmelle Wasch Reporter

In Sept. of 2011 Principal Sherrie Gahn was featured on the “Ellen Show”. This was because every day, many of the students leave Whitney Elementary School not knowing where their next meal is coming from. Over 500 kids out of around 600 live in poverty. In fact, the community is so poor, donations of food, clothing, and money are sent to the school on a daily basis from local non-profit organizations and private donors. Gahn devotes all of her extra time and money to the kids of her school. By providing the children with new opportunities, Gahn is increasing their chances at success and the possibilities in life. Families who struggle with paying bills or need medical help, such as dental, and pediatric care for their kids receive help from Whitney Elementary in order to pay off those charges. Whitney also offers tutoring programs for parents and families who are illiterate. “I was treated like a star, but I have a real hard time with that,” Gahn told the Las Vegas Sun in an interview. “ do what I do not for recognition but for the kiddos.” Little did she know, DeGeneres was putting together a surprise for Gahn with half of her students waiting to greet her on live television. The “Ellen Show” made a donation of $100,000- the largest in Whitney Elementary history. In an interview with Gahn, she was surprised by Ellen and “the phenomenal amount of kindness that oozes from her.” “I wanted so badly to enjoy the moment... but it was so surreal, I couldn’t!” Gahn said. When Gahn first arrived at Whitney Elementary she was shocked to see students stuffing ketchup packets into their backpacks and eating them. “It’s heartbreaking to see that”, said Gahn. Ever since then, this extraordinary principal has exhibited a selfless drive to help the kids that pass through her school. Photo Credit: Las Vegas Sun

Principal Sherrie Gahn is presented with a check by Ellen on the “Ellen Show” in Sept. of 2011.



W C TA R o c k s P B L Continued from page 1

“My group rehearsed our presentation several times,” said Cornejo. “We each knew exactly what we were going to say when it was time to present. Part of being prepared for a presentation is being able to recite information from your own mind, without referencing to the PowerPoint/board for help. We made sure that each group member knew what they were talking about before we began our presentation.” After all of the groups presented their business, it was time for the judges to make the decision about which groups had an amazing business. In order to win the PBL, the “sharks” were mainly looking for a group that had great core values and had created a business that could appeal to people in

the real world. “I would definitely say that our group put a great deal of effort into our business,” said Cornejo. “Many of the students that we spoke to in regards to our business, Shaggy Chic, gave us positive remarks on our effort. I can speak on behalf of everyone in my group when I say that we did anticipate winning. With the amount of effort that we put into our presentation, we had an idea that we would win.” PBL is an important part of West Career and Technical Academy’s curriculum and learning philosophy. This PBL was a great way to prepare for the future, because students must be able to work successfully with people they do not know.

N ew S o p h o m o re a t W C TA By Tess Harms Editor -in-Chief Sophomore Samantha Reintjes is a transfer from Palo Verde High School this year into the Environmental Science program. She is very excited to get this opportunity to go to WCTA. Wrangler News: Why did you want to switch to WCTA from Palo Verde? Samantha Reintjes: Because I recognized that it was a much better school with much better teachers and campus. WN: What was it like to not make it until the second week of school? SR: It was really hard when I got rejected in the spring cause I had my heart set on West, but it was conflicting when I’d already started the year at Palo cause I had already adjusted to the fact that I would be graduating from Palo. WN: What went through your mind when they told you that you had got into West? SR: I was excited instantly and then I felt that I had a big decision to make. I feel that West is a much better school and offers a lot more as a student. WN: Was it weird to switch schools your sophomore year? SR: It was kind of like a repeat of my freshman year. WN: What is it like to switch from six classes a day to an A-B schedule with eight classes? SR: It’s a lot easier to procrastinate when you have two days. WN: Do you like having four classes a day instead of six? SR: Yes, because I think its easier to manage your classes when you only have four classes a day. WN: Do you miss anything about Palo? SR: I miss seeing all the friends I have at Palo, but I’ve gotten to know a lot of kids at West that are similar to me through my program and classes. WN: How is WCTA different from

Palo Verde? SR: It’s a lot more school oriented and you get more attention for your schoolwork. WN: How is the atmosphere similar of different from Palo Verde? SR: I think the atmosphere at West is a lot more academic and driven because the students are a lot more focused on the schoolwork than at Palo where they are more focused on the social aspect. WN: What do you like about West Tech so far? SR: I like how everybody is focused on their schoolwork and it’s [they’re] all really good kids. WN: What do you think of your Photo Credit: Jennie Slade

program so far? SR: My program is great. It’s so much fun because we get to do so much hands on field experience. There’s also so many different career options that can come from it. WN: What do you do outside of school? SR: I’m on the Palo Verde cross country team. It’s fun because you feel more connected to your zoned school. WN: Are you happy with your decision? SR: Yes, I feel very grateful to be at West and can tell its going to be really, really great in the long run.



G iv i n g G r i z z l i e s C l u b K i c k s O f f

By Alyssa Stewart Opinions Editor

This year, West Career and Technical Academy has taken part in the Giving Grizzlies Community Service Club located at Givens Elementary. Thirty-two high school students have taken on mentorship roles of thirty-two elementary students, and are collaborating together to do numerous community service projects. The elementary students range from third to fifth grade. The advisor, Dara Marias, asked WCTA to do the mentorship program and help the elementary kids with community service projects. Junior Abigail Till was asked to help out with the project. “I was in the club in elementary school and the advisor and I are good friends,” said Till, “so she asked me to help out and I worked over the summer with her and her daughter Molly.” Students involved in the Giving Grizzlies Mentorship Club (GGMC) receive mentorship education, leadership opportunities within the club, and half

of a high school credit for sixty hours of community service. Students will be participating in events such as the Olive Crest Harvest Carnival, The Lied Animal Foundation, and several book/toy/food drives. The clubs original goal was to have 30 kids and 30 mentors. “It depends [on] how many kids sign up at Givens,” said Till. Till is the president of GGMC. Other positions will be offered to the students involved in the program including: Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Historian. “Since I am a new teacher at West, I was looking for a club to advise and this club seems to be very worthwhile.” said Co-advisor Tia Price. “I hope to assist the mentors and participate in more community service projects. Co-advisors Kevin Palafox and Tia Price are excited to be working with the kids “I became an advisor because it sounds like a good thing to do.” said Palafox. “They’re helping the elementary kids become better people.” The club is open to all grades at WCTA. Sophomores Jasmine Vo and Isabella Tang are

D ay o f t h e D e a d The celebration of Day of the Dead, widely held in Spanish countries, is now coming to WCTA from Oct. 31 through Nov. 3. We are celebrating with cultural activities in remembrance of our teachers. Day of the Dead is not to be confused with Halloween or All Hallows Eve. People celebrate Day of the Dead in memory of family members and ancestors. They pray in the churches and go to the cemeteries. “If my mother is in town I go church, if my mother is not in town I will not go to church,” said Diane Ortiz. They eat food such as the Dead Bread and anything else the person enjoyed. They also make decorations such as the calaveras and sugar skulls . At WCTA we will be also celebrating in a way to honor the culture. WCTA is doing an activity where teachers are filling out a survey pretending that they have died and filling out how they died. Students in AP Spanish III and IV are making altars, and each teachers is given their own altars.The students will also be writing obituaries. Then, all the altars will be combined to a huge altar and taken to the Springs Preserve on Nov. 2 and 3. AP classes with also be bringing candles and possibly flowers. They will also be making sugar skulls. The sugar skulls and decorations will be put into the cafeteria and later on brought to the Springs Preserve.

members of the club. “I joined the club because I’m always interested in community service projects,” said Vo. “I also love kids and working with them. It seems like a great opportunity to help out while creating new friendships.” Vo is looking forward to all the service projects, especially the upcoming projects at Assisted Heights Living Home and with the animals. “It’s a good opportunity to work with different organizations while teaching, guiding, and mentoring the grizzly students.” said Tang. Tang is excited for the graduation at the end of the program because it will be a day that everyone comes together and admires all the hard work that the club did this year. The mentorship club is brand new to WCTA, but is a hit with its full amount of members and even some on a waiting list. Students can’t wait to see what Giving Grizzlies has in store.

M o n o L a ke T r i p Continued from page 1

California Gulls and Snowy Plovers make their home there, while over eighty species of migratory water birds stop at Mono Lake. Returning from the Mono Lake trip, students have taken the experience to heart. The Mono Lake Club is determined to spread the word and take action. Their goal is to inform others on what they’ve learned and work on water and nature conservation. Additionally, many Las Vegans are unaware that Southern Nevada Water Authority is potentially constructing a pipeline to drain water sources. Examining the water issues at Mono Lake may provide a precedent and shed light on the issue revolving our water authority’s proposal. Additionally, the students’ collected data will be shared with other schools in various countries. “It’s changed my way of thinking and also how I perceive all the things around me,” sophomore Maria Echeverria said. “It has also made me realize that if I put my mind to it I can do it. No matter what it is, from trying to save a lake to an everyday routine. All it takes is effort.”

Photo Credit: Sasha Estrada

Photo Credit: Day of the Dead is a widely celebrated holiday in Hispanic and Latin cultures. This holiday has decorations such as skeletons and papel picado (paper with decorative design.)

Photo Credit: Francisco Virella

R e p u bl i c a n s By Zac Clark Guest Reporter The United States of America used to be touted by most as the greatest country in the world; today this observation is appearing to be less and less valid. Our last two presidents did little for the country. It should be a no-brainer, then, that a businessman should be elected to lead the greatest country in the world. The Republican Candidate Mitt Romney is the best choice for the next president of our country. For individual taxes, Romney plans to make a 20 percent marginal tax cut across-the-board, encouraging entrepreneurship and investing. Our current tax system is made of a collection of separate decisions that have been added over the decades. He plans on preserving the current rate on interests, capital gains, and dividends. Our current system spends over ten billion dollars a day. So would it really be in the best interest of the country to cut taxes? Yes, we can avoid more debt easily by reducing and stabilizing federal spending. Our president, Barack Obama, while admittedly “inheriting” the situation from his predecessor, has done little to fix the problem, with the unemployment rate still fixed at a higher percentage than what it was when he “inherited” it. The employment situation would be


better if our education system was adequate. Billions of dollars are thrown at school districts and higher education with little result. The United States ranks number twenty-one in the world for education (a number based on adult literacy,) something that is unacceptable. The high school dropout rate in 2010 was 7.4percent, and recent research shows that only 46 percent of Americans complete college once they start. The cost of higher education has risen by 25 percent, and the amount of student debt has reach one trillion dollars. Starting with K-12 schools, Romney would give students trapped in bad schools a genuine alternative by changing the limiting laws and policies that are already in place. He would also build on the success of charter and digital schools. To combat the rising tuition fees of higher education, Romney would strengthen and simplify the financial aid system, welcome the private sector, and replace federal regulation with private sector competition. An uneducated workforce is no workforce at all, and having a qualified generation of workers with real skills is crucial to the success of our country. Mitt Romney is the solution for the problems we face today. A vote for Romney is a vote for liberty and freedom for all, and a vote for someone who believes in America.

Mission Statement: The purpose of the WCTA Newspaper is to keep students updated on current events that are happening around the school, community, country, and world. The goal is to promote academic and extracurricular activities, student achievements, and the experience of going to WCTA. Editorial Statement: The WCTA Newspaper is a student-run newspaper. Students research, collect information, and write the stories that are published. All opinions and views published in the newspaper are based on the writer’s opinions and are not of the school, student body, or staff of WCTA. If you would like to submit a comment, suggestion, or question you can submit them email them to tessh327@westcta. or We value your input. The Staff: Fawn Canady: Advisor


Alexandra Blake Tess Harms: Editor in Chief Kenny Choi Mike Ghazar Brett Bialik: Co-Editor in Lon Halverson Chief Alexis Harris Sebastian Labadie Alyssa Stewart: Opinions Edi- Joselyn Lacy tor Ethan Lee Sydney Moral Chevaya Silaski: Organizer Braxton Pendleton Martin Renteria Haddar Ben-Shimon: FeaCarmelle Wasch tures Editor

Po l l o f Vo t e s f o r 2012 Election



B u d ge t C u t s a re a f f e c t i n g W C TA Programs closing, less and less nutritious lunches, and teaches getting laid off. Over the past year or so budget cuts have been steadily rising. Whether it is in high school, college, or in the lives of the average working teacher, the cuts affect us all. In Nevada, the largest percentage of cuts has been issued going to over 41 percent of educational funding to be cut. The problem is that states get money and support from the government based on education. With all the educational cuts that would mean that less and less people would want to go to the universities in Nevada and because of that the budget will just get worse and worse. Even places that seem as

if nothing has changed have been effected, included West Career and Technical Academy “We are going to have to raise more money for our own supplies for Earth Club to make more of an impact,” said Jeffrey Gromny, the Environmental Sciences Program leader and Earth Club Advisor. Along with the clubs being effected, the classes are starting to feel the heat the sizes keep getting bigger and less supplies are given in return. “It’s harder to receive supplies and things that we need to make class exciting,” said chemistry

teacher Audri Rosen. Not just the average school levels of K-12 have been affected. Colleges have also been suffering money wise. “The budget cuts are discombobulating my education,” said sophomore Alyssa Heidorn. Even teachers have to worry about their jobs. So many have been laid off because the school system can no longer afford to have them working. Teachers are being paid less and have to get most supplies with their own money. Other problems with the

NEWS Sandusky Found Guilty

By Brett Bialik Co-Editor -in-Chief The year is 2008. Senator Barack Obama has just won the election. Obama has become the first African-American president in the United States. There is a message of hope for the future. It is no longer 2008. Four years have passed since that historic day, and America is drenched in indecision. Obama has to defend his job against his Republican opponent Mitt Romney. Why should I vote Obama, and why should I care? The first question is what the majority of this story is about. The second question, however, is more important ultimately. It matters not if you agree with my point of view. Here is the democratic platform. The democrats, and Obama are pro-same-sex marriage. In economics, they believe in making Wall Street accountable. Obama believes in an economy that works from the bottom up, and middle out. This means that government should assist the poor and middle class, and not send all support those with the highest amount of income. In general, they believe that all Americans should have to play by the same rules in the economy. This allows for all to be able to succeed. Unemployment at Obama’s inauguration was 7.7 percent. By November of that year, it was 10 percent, but it has been dropped to 8.2 percent. Now, naysayers say that unemployment has gone up under Obama.

From January to November of 2009, not a single bill caused this to happen. It was residual from the 2008 crash. No longer are jobs being lost at 750,000 per month. In four years, Obama has saved millions of jobs in preserving General Motors and Chrysler. The Affordable Healthcare Act, or “Obamacare” has been called socialized medicine, but this is not true. The insurance companies are the ones making the money from this, not the government. The bill simply allows for all Americans to have health insurance, not just those employed by a large company or those with insurable income. The number one cause of bankruptcy was medical bills. There is no longer a limit on the amount of insurance you can be given. Before if you were on hard times and got sick, would most likely go to the doctor and be unable to pay, thus long-term medical bills are caused. America has a large number of senior citizens. These seniors trust that Social Security and Medicare will take care of them. However, the Bill of makes it so that these Americans are at the mercy of companies who are out to make a quick buck. Obama removed 716 billion dollars from waste and leakage to insurance companies to flow back into Medicare. In addition, he added eight years to the solvency of Medicare. Obama has set us up on the road to recovery. America has a very important choice to make in November. Choose wisely.

classes growing in size the teachers have less time to focus on individuals the average teacher of today has close to two hundred students! “The budget cuts have gone too far; Clark County School District is one of the lowest funded education system in this country,” said sophomore Tony Tassone. Besides magnet schools and colleges public school are getting hit hard as well. Some of the major areas that are experiencing cuts from K-12 are music, arts, and even physical education. Many extra curricular areas are also being targeted as places to cut funds from. The cuts have gone too far and if something is not done soon then there will not be an educational system to worry about.

CNN. “In their twisted universe they helped their victims and loved them.” Alleged accounts of Sandusky participating in inappropriate conduct with minors date back to 1994. Bellefonte, PA—On Tuesday, October 09, 2012, Jerry The grand jury report was not released until NovemSandusky, former Penn State University assistant football ber 4, 2011. coach, was sentenced to at least 30 years in prison after be The first lawsuit against Sandusky was filed against ing convicted of sexually abusing ten boys. Sandusky on November 30, 2011 “The sentence is clearly adequate,” Vice President On Tuesday, during the sentencing Sandusky pleaded of Communications and Development for the Pennsylvania innocent on all accounts. Coalition against Rape Kristen House told CNN. “One thing that’s critical for victims’ healing is an In June of 2012 Sandusky was convicted for 45 acacknowledgement of guilt,” attorney Ben Andreozzi told counts of sexual abuse on children. CNN. Sandusky is “stunting that healing” process. Over the course of 15 years Sandusky sexually Sandusky will spend ten days in a local jail before abused ten boys. being moved to prison. Four out of the ten victims attended the court sentencing As Sandusky is 68 years old, he has basically been on Tuesday. given a life sentence in prison ranging from 30 to 60 years. “The sentence will never erase what he did to me,” “I will not forgive you, Jerry Sandusky,” Victim No. Victim No. 5 told the court, according to CNN. “It will 4 told Jean Casarez from “In Session”, according to Vice never make me whole. He must pay for his crimes; take Photo Credit: CNN President of Communications and Development for the into account the pain, the private anguish.” Jerry Sandusky was escorted by police Sandusky pleaded innocent for all accounts that he was to his hearing on Tues., Oct. 9, 2012, in Pennsylvania Coalition against Rape according to CNN. Bellefonte, PA. charged with. “I will not forgive you, but I ask that all the other victims forgive me for not coming forward sooner. “Pedophiles often believe they did not do anything wrong,” Marci Hamilton, a representative of victim Travis Weaver, told

By Tess Harms Editor -in-Chief

D e m o c ra t s


SpaceX is launched

By Brett Bialik Co-Editor -in-Chief California owned Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, was launched on October 7, 2012, at 8:35 p.m. from Launch Complex Forty at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida as the first operational resupply mission. The Dragon was the first commercially owned spacecraft to be launched. On Wednesday, Dragon arrived at the International Space Station, resupplying it and getting supplies to bring back to earth, such as scientific samples from previous missions. “This is a big moment in the course of this mission and for commercial spaceflight,” said SpaceX CEO and Chief Technical Officer Elon Musk to NASA. “We are pleased that Dragon is now ready to deliver its cargo to the International Space Station.” The mission was the first of 12 that SpaceX is going perform under NASA’s 1.6 billion dollar Commercial Resupply Services contract. Only the Dragon is able to carry cargo in this quantity and bring cargo back to earth due to the fact that all other capsules would burn

up in the atmosphere of earth.

Dragon will be released on October 28, 2012, with splashdown and recovery off the coast of California that same day. “This was a critical event in spaceflight tonight,” said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. “We’re once again launching spacecraft from American soil with the supplies our astronauts need in space. NASA and the nation are embarking on an ambitious program of space exploration.” In three to four years, SpaceX hopes to be able to transport people in its capsules, leading the way for companies to take over for the International Space Station, and giving NASA the time and funding to explore deeper in space. Dragon is delivering over 1,000 pounds of materials. It is bringing back over 2,000 pounds of materials. SpaceX has completed the first ever commercial space mission to dock at the International Space Station. Twelve more missions are scheduled to follow. Two are scheduled to be performed by the end of the year, and six are planned for 2013.

ENTERTAINMENT 6 Bite of Las Vegas

Halloween Word Search N E E W O L L A H R T C S Z Z


















By Alyssa Stewart Opinions Editor The sixteenth annual Bite of Las Vegas didn’t disappoint this year with its wide selection of food and an amazing artist line up. The line-up included: Rebecca Ferguson, Phillip Phillips, Tristan Prettyman, Ed Sheeran, Counting Crows, and Matchbox Twenty. Ferguson kicked off the music in the morning with a relatively small crowd that quickly grew when Phillips and eventually Sheeran performed. West Tech sophomores Kayla Clark and Cameren Williams were part of the teenage crowd to see Sheeran. They even get to meet the artist. “I went for the first time this year to see Ed.” said Williams. Each artist, excluding Matchbox Twenty, performed a set consisting of four songs. Along with the music there were about 30 restaurants present at the event. There were a few other booths from places like The Fright Dome and Pole Position. Sophomore Kierra Clough was also at

the festival. “I didn’t walk around much because I wanted to save my place at the stage,” said Clough,” but before and after the acts I walked around for a bit and looked at all the food booths.” The DJ’s from the 94.1 radio station admitted that it was the largest crowd they’ve ever seen. Hundreds of people had showed up at the event. Clark, who has been to the festival many times before, also believes the crowd was big. “I’m pretty sure most of them were there to see Ed Sheeran.” said Clark. Clough was part of the large group to see Sheeran. “The crowd was huge,” said Clough, “I almost passed out due to my claustrophobia and a friend had to lead me out of the crowd.” Large crowd aside, the festival was a hit.l “I had so much fun with my friends,” said Clough, “I can’t wait to go next year.”

Homecoming 2012 Fright Dome Employee By Sydney Moral Reporter Fright Dome, held at the Adventure Dome, is now in its tenth year. According to students at WCTA, Fright Dome is scarier than it was last year. Freshman Aleigh Blake said, “It was scary at first, but it was fun. I was like OMG, what’s going to happen?” Christian Moral is an employee this year at Fright Dome. Wrangler News: How did you apply for Fright Dome? Christian Moral: I went online and filled out an application. I went in for an interview since it was all over the news. WN: What made you stand out from all the other applicants when you were being interviewed? CM: I told them I was a slider and they said, “Oh, we never had one of those

before.” WN: What interested you in applying for Fright Dome? CM: During Halloween, I would slide on my kneepads and scare the people in my neighborhood. Also, I love going to Fright Dome so I thought I would apply. WN: What are you going to do during the off season? CM: I would go to school like any other person would, and I might also try to get a job at the Apple Store.

Wrangler news 2012  
Wrangler news 2012