The BluePrint - Volume 14, Issue 4

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Hagerty High School

Volume 13, Issue 4

Feb. 14, 2019

State of the Disunion President Trump’s State of the Union has support from the right and criticism from the left. page 6

The varsity cheerleading squad earned its fifth state title in the last six years on Feb. 2. It was the team’s first state title under new coach Terri King. photo by Michael Gibson story on page 15

Oviedo, Florida

Parkland: One Year Later

A Second Chance Adopted students reflect on their lives and what it means to be adopted.

One year after the Stoneman Douglas shooting, students and staff reflect on the changes.

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DARE Week raises funds to support Rocha family

MARKING DONATIONS Leadership teacher Sarah Jarem makes the final changes to her classes’ donations. She tracked all of them throughout DARE Week. photo by Lukas Goodwin.

Lukas Goodwin


Staff Reporter

he annual DARE Week fundraiser was especially significant this year, as all funds will be donated to vice principal Angel Rocha and her husband ESE teacher Patrick Rocha, whose daughter and parents were hospitalized after a serious car accident. DARE Week ran from Monday, Feb. 4 to Friday, Feb. 8, and teachers raised funds by setting monetary

goals for their classes to reach. If students were able to raise the specified amount by the end of the week, the teacher would do the dare or give the reward they had promised. In the past, DARE Week funds have raised money for Tundrathon Dance Marathon, which is part of the Children’s Miracle Network. This year, however after the Rochas’ car accident on East Colonial Drive on Jan. 4, the change made sense. “The Rochas are going through some major

hardships,” Leadership teacher Sarah Jarem said, who led DARE Week alongside fellow leadership teacher Kari Miller. “We decided it would be nice to have Huskies help out fellow Huskies.” Teachers set dares they knew would motivate students to donate. While the majority of the staff made simple goals such as extra credit, a free homework pass or a movie day, some took a different approach. Social studies and science teachers Matt and Brandi Malkovich told their students that if they reached their shared goal of $120, the two would trade classes for a day, meaning Brandi would take over Matt’s government classes and Matt would teach Biology. English teacher Samantha Richardson promised her students that if they raised $1,000, they would not have to annotate the last two sections in The Life of Pi. By the end of the week, her classes brought in $1,050, partially due to her head start the week before. Similarly, Spanish teacher Yvette Rhode raised roughly $600 the week before, since she knew she would not be in school during the official week. “We just thought, ‘What can we do that’s close to the Hagerty community?’” senior Anna Wimberly, who helped organize DARE Week in her leadership class, said. “After what happened to the Rocha family, we just knew we needed to support them as much as we possibly can.” By the end of DARE Week, the school raised over $11,000. Donations are expected to continue until Tuesday, Feb. 12.

Rocha family update Zoey Young


Staff Reporter

n Friday, Jan. 4, Assistant Principal Angel Rocha and ESE teacher Patrick Rocha’s family were involved in a devastating accident that left their daughter Zoey, and Angel Rocha’s parents seriously injured. The incident involved a tanker truck pulling out in front of Rocha’s parents’ truck. The accident happened in Bithlo, at East Colonial Drive and Gloucester Street in the evening. Rocha’s parents were recovering at Orlando Regional Medical Center from back surgeries and are now in physical therapy, while their daughter is at Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children for traumatic brain damage to her right frontal lobe. “Zoey seems to be holding strong and they are checking daily to see how she is progressing. Both parents are out of surgery and working on recovery,” English teacher Lindsey Jackson said. Jackson set up a GoFundMe for anyone to donate, which has already raised over $16,000, but the goal is $100,000 since the combined medical bills are expected to be so high. Read the full story at

Youth council meets with city hall

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Zoey Young


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FEB 19


FEB 20

On Saturday Feb. 16, the Hearts for Autism Walk will be held by the Youth PALS club. The event will be held at the track and will cost $5 to attend. All proceeds go towards nearby special needs classrooms.

On Tuesday, Feb. 19, the Theater Department will hold a Superior Showcase in the auditorium at 6 p.m. to fundraise money to attend districts and states. They will perform district-winning shows and two original plays. A $5 admission fee is required.

Rho Kappa Honor Society is holding a movie night on Wednesday, Feb. 20 at 5:30 p.m. in the auditorium. The movie “Hidden Figures” will be playing in celebration of Black History Month. Donations will be collected to raise money for the Rocha family.


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The band will be hosting a Pre-MPA concert on Feb. 27 in the auditorium. The goal is to prepare students before they go before their MPA judges. The concert will be at 7 p.m. and is free to all that attend.

From Friday Feb. 28 to Saturday, March 2 DECA Business Club will travel to states held at Disney Springs. There, students will be judge on their interviewing skills with professionals in their indicated event area. Students who qualify top five will go to the international round of the competition in Orlando in April.


Staff Reporter

n Wednesday, Feb. 6, the first Youth Advisory Council from Hagerty visited the Oviedo City Council to introduce themselves and discuss their role at City Hall, a meeting that included deputy mayor Bob Pollack and council member Jeff Chudnow. “We presented ourselves to the actual city council members and talked about who we are, what we do, what we have achieved, and what we are looking to achieve,” said sophomore Tai Markman. Founded and led by senior Michael McNamara, the youth advisory group allows students to gain experience and knowledge in city government, as well as helping out the community. “Recently we presented the Youth Council and its goal to the City Council, followed by a tribute to the victims of the Parkland shooting a year ago this Feb. 14,” McNamara said. Their biggest achievements and changes they have made are within the military community. Sophomore Alex Tao notes that the Youth Council has pushed to make Oviedo a Purple Heart City, meaning that they want to put more of a focus on helping veterans and active service members. “We have made many volunteer achievements and we are very involved in getting letters to active service members to help them gain morale and hear from home,” said sophomore Tai Markman. After attending Boy’s State, a leadership program that brought many community leaders from Florida together, McNamara was inspired to start a change in Oviedo, which prompted

ON YOUR MARKS, GET SET, LEAD! The first Youth Advisory Council started by Senior Michael met at City Hall on Wednesday, Feb. 6. photo provided by Michael McNamara

him and his friend, Oviedo senior Christian Conrad, to start a council. “Seeing these remarkable future leaders of society, and what they gave to their communities, I knew I had to bring a part of this program back to Oviedo. I approached my friend and together we brought the idea to city government and they full-heartedly approved,” McNamara said. Sponsor Lindsey Jackson supported the group and agrees it is important for students to be involved. Applications for the Youth Advisory Council will be available for all rising freshmen, sophomores and juniors. Meetings are held on weekends and during city council meetings.

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No problem: Robotics lands three spots for states Sharika Khondaker


Staff Reporter

t was the moment that junior Aashni Patel had been waiting for—the awards ceremony, the moment her team would move on or not move on to states. Then judges announced that her team won the third place Inspire Award, an automatic qualification, and she started to cry. “We all put in so much time and effort into our robot and notebook, and it felt amazing to be rewarded for it,” Patel said. “I’ve been waiting for this moment for six years because all of the robotics teams I’ve been on before have never advanced past regionals.” On Saturday, Feb. 2, robotics hosted the SpaceCoast League Championship for the ninth year in a row. The school was decorated with paper asteroids and foam planets, as well as a space scavenger hunt to match the “Houston, We Have a Problem” theme. Twenty-four teams from Seminole and Brevard counties participated in the event, including Team 4227, Metal Morphosis and Team 4717, Mechromancers. The teams competed to be one of the eight to advance to the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Tech Challenge State Championship. The challenge was Rover Ruckus, where robots scored small blocks and balls, or “minerals”, into the “lander,” a goal that includes points when robots attach themselves in the center of the field. Teams also score points by latching onto the lander, as well as scoring the minerals into their alliance “depot,”

a small taped off square in the corner of the field. The way a robot gathers these minerals is key to the amount of points scored. Teams played six matches throughout the day, adding points to the matches they had played at the last three competitions. These points determine their League ranking, which aids them going into the elimination rounds. Metal Morphosis won two of their matches and the Mechromancers won three matches out of the six qualification matches played. After a rough day at League Champs, Team 4227 placed eighth and Team 4717 placed tenth, but the ultimate goal was met—getting to states. “Even though it was a pretty rough day for the Mechromancers, it was still an incredible learning experience that will aid our team at states,” junior Asheya Naik said. Prior to eliminations, the top four teams each get to pick two other teams to form an alliance. Both 4227 and 4717 made it to the elimination rounds, as they were each picked by one of the top-four ranked teams. Metal Morphosis and Mechromancers’ respective alliances lost during the semifinals. The advancement was not solely based on robot performance: other factors, like the team’s Engineering Notebook and Presentation, helped them win awards. Teams were required to give a seven to eight-minute presentation to the judges, talking about their robot, outreach and business; everything that makes up their team. Team 4227 won the third place Inspire Award, presented to the team that embodies what FIRST is all about, being a role model for other teams, and Team 4717 won the Think



Administration, parents and students were interviewed as the school underwent a quinquennial accreditation process from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement on Feb. 11 and 12. After the school completes a self-evaluation, a four person accreditation review team is sent by the council to observe the campus and interview parents, students, teachers and businesses. These are intended to vet whether a school is worthy of accreditation. Even if the school is accredited, the team still tries to offer suggestions for improvement.

CLASS REGISTRATION DEADLINE The week of Feb. 11- 15 counselors will be inputting students’ schedules for next year. After entering the desired classes into the computer with your counselor, students that want to make any changes or have decided on another course can still go adjust by going to see their counselor by May 1. Attempted changes after this deadline have a lower chance of being successfully changed due to class capacity and availability. This year students can sign up for new classes to take such as Mandarin and Creative Writing II.

JROTC HOLDS GUEST SPEAKER On Wednesday, Feb. 13, JROTC invited Col. Danny McKnight, a wartime hero from the military, to come speak to students about leadership, accountability and responsibility. The event was held in the auditorium throughout the school day, and was open to all students. He mentioned some of the things that motivate him to go speak to students around the world, talking to them about why it’s important to love America and step up. when given the opportunity to serve the country.

WHEELING INTO FINALS Sophomores Ben Steinebronn and Jolie Miller, and juniors Sam Jones and

Mason Dettman work on fixing their robot before their semi-finals match. photo by Maggie Taylor

Award, given to the team that best reflects the journey of the engineering process. This gave the teams the sixth and seventh qualification spots for the FTC State Championship, which will be held on Feb. 22 and 23 in Jacksonville. “It’s crazy because most competitions are just about the points that you earn in the game, but we are moving to states because we took the hardest route,” senior Jonathan Valentin said. This is the first year that all three teams

from the robotics program qualified for their state championship. The VEX Team, Cyber Shock, qualified for their state championship in October, an event that will be held on March 9 in Tampa. “All three teams going to states has been a goal that we have had for three years, and it feels good to finally achieve this because we haven’t been able to before. All the pieces are finally into place for us,” coach Po Dickison said.

Mandarin to be offered next year Bryson Turner

Online Editor ired shortly before the school year began, geometry teacher Zhenzhen Zhang did not have enough time to apply to teach a Chinese course for the school year. This fall, she’s fixing that. Mandarin Chinese will join Spanish, French, German and American Sign Language to become the fifth world language program offered on campus. After moving from Hengshui, China to Florida in 2010, and becoming a math teacher at Freedom High School in 2015, many of her students were drawn to the numerous Chinese objects that decorated her room. This year, one can find a calligraphy set, a wooden box handmade by her father and several pieces of paper currency, all depicting Mao Zedong. “I felt like I could be the key to show people the culture of China or the language,” Zhang said. The new class has already drawn student interest, including the Asian-American population on campus, which represents 6.69 percent of the student body. Freshman Alexa Young, who was adopted as an infant from Lianjiang, China, sees the class as an opportunity to associate more with her birth heritage. “It’s really important to me to really connect with my culture and to rediscover who I am,” Young said. Meanwhile, junior Jiyou Kim, whose family hails from South Korea, sees the course as a chance to connect more with friends abroad. “Almost all schools in Korea have Chinese classes,” Kim said. “My friends in Korea learned Chinese a little bit. I just wanted to learn the same thing as them.”


While some are ready to sign up for the new language, others, like sophomore Ericka Keast, are waiting until senior year to complete the foreign language tracks they have already started. “I’ve always been interested in the language and I needed another elective to fill that spot after I’m done with Spanish,” Keast said. Zhang hopes that the introduction of her native language will convince students to branch out from their more typical cultural experiences. “Everybody thinks Chinese is hard to learn,” Zhang said. “It’s just different.” Chinese I, Chinese II, and AP Chinese will be offered for the 2020-21 school year. Zhang hopes to one day organize a summer trip to China for her students.

COOL CALLIGRAPHY Zhenzhen Zhang uses one of her Mandarin calligraphy sets. She will buy a class set for her students to use next year in her Mandarin class. photo by Bryson Turner

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Unleashed makes history at nationals, Perez wins soloist Melissa Donovan


Assistant Editor

he judges announced soloist awards, counting down from 10th place. When they reached the top five and senior Laura Perez still had not been called, she thought to herself, “There’s no way.” Then, the judges called first place, and Perez heard her name. “When I heard that I got first place I was shocked because of the amount of talent at the competition, [it was unbelievable]” Perez said. “My main goal was just to feel happy about what I performed once I got off the stage and hopefully [make] the audience feel something when I danced.” From Friday Feb. 1-3, the varsity dance team competed in the National Dance Competition at Gaylord Palms against over 100 other teams. For the first time in five years, the team qualified straight to finals with their lyrical routine. Though they did not make it to finals with their pom dance, they still placed 13th in the nation in their division. To make it straight into finals, the team’s score has to typically be in the top 40 percent. Judges also hold a “second chance round” to give opportunity for up to two additional teams to qualify. “Many of us were in tears,” senior Maia Kran said. “The whole team was so happy overall because Unleashed had not made it into finals in many years.”

For dancers like Perez, the awards from the competition validated their skills and helped them look toward the future. “This competition meant a lot to me in particular because it was a Nationals competition,” Perez said. “I was not just competing against other dancers in Florida, but dancers nationwide who have been dancing for as long as I have and who share the same passion and love for dance.” Perez believes that this experience solidified her plans to major in Dance in college. Similarly, senior Bryanna Buker plans to minor in Dance at West Virginia University as well as teach dance classes. She believes that the team work demonstrated in the competition helped her solidify her future plans. “This competition really emphasized the importance of working as a team for me,” Buker said. “Without these girls, I would not have made it this far. This team is really something magical this year.” Another soloist, junior Soomin Eum placed fourth for her solo contemporary performance to the song “Dreams” by Nauges. “Once I got on stage, the support from my friends, family and all the other dancers produced such a positive energy that the nerves were not as present and instead I was so happy and grateful to be able to perform,” Eum said. Eum also looks to study dance and pre-med in college. Even if she does not pursue dance as her career, she hopes to always have dance in her life.




hen a performer receives hate for their work, it can be discouraging. However, for sophomore Johnny Frawley, known as “SkitZic,” negative comments about his songs only serve to improve his music. My favorite part is the overall s u p p o r t and hate, because I feel loved, while still being kept humble and having something to work against,” Frawley said. Frawley who has been making music on Soundcloud since 2016, has had an interest in music since he was young and started rapping to vent his feelings. His favorite song is “Fall,” because in his opinion, he had stepped out of his comfort zone and “executed it well.” Frawley ultimately hopes to continue his rapping career and continue to work hard and stay humble. His main goal is to succeed and beat his competition.

March, including another national competition in Texas over spring break. “It has been an amazing year so far,” dance coach Diane Hasenbank said. “Winning trophies is great, but the growth as dancers and teammates means so much more.”


Johnny Frawley

Vangeli Tsompanidis espite his beard repeatedly detaching from his face multiple times, senior Vangeli Tsompanidis had fun at a The Little Mermaid production hosted by Orlando Repertory Theatre. Tsompanidis, who was acting as King Triton at the time, had no idea how much acting and singing would impact his life. In the present, Tsompandis has participated in many programs and productions and is looking to change the stigma about going into theater, instead of studying science or math. “Going for theater is cool; the arts industries is one of the biggest out there,” Tsompandis said. Tsompanidis has been accepted into several theater programs, including one at Oklahoma City University. He is currently waiting on news from Carnegie Mellon University, which he auditioned for and was called back.

Though the national competition is a highlight, the Unleashed has had a successful competition season. They placed first for both of their dances at their first competition and ended up tying with their JV team for the highest score. They will travel to two more competitions in


MEET Actor

JUST DANCE The varsity Unleashed Dance Team perform at the pep rally for football game against Oviedo. photo by Peyton Sutch

Arth Nayak


Graphic Artist

he sound of Lil Uzi Vert’s music can be heard in the background as sophomore Aren Nyak works on his latest sketch. Nyak takes inspiration from scary or “cringe-worthy” artwork, such as Mr. Nightmare, a horror YouTube channel or Lil Uzi Vert, a musical songwriter and rapper. Since he was 5, Nyak has been drawing, and one of his biggest accomplishments was getting featured on producer Luke Campuses’ a l b u m cover. He prefers to paint due to the “diversity of colors” and the depth he can give to characters. Nyak also enjoys sketching figures and different characters. Nyak’s ultimate goal was to get his work published and gain more exposure for his art and hard work. “I am really hoping that one day that goal will be a reality,” Nyak said.

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A little perspective

he first day of the second semester. The day every student dreads after a winter break away from anything school–related. However, this is also a day for a fresh start. Students come into their classes with hopes of higher grades and memories to make. Then reality hits with homework assignments, study guides, quizzes and tests, and the once positive attitude students had is gone. They dig themselves into holes of sleep deprivation and exhaustion that seem impossible to escape. But, no matter how long it takes, the hole will get smaller. School is important, but there is more to life than your endless piles of assignments, even if it does not look like it. While students are at sports practices, with friends, or at club meetings, and they say “Can this hurry up? I have homework to go do,” they do not really get the most out of wherever they are. Every student has been overwhelmed with work but as time goes on, you learn to manage it better and avoid the rut. AP classes get more intense in the third quarter and the phrases “School sucks” or “I need a break” are more and more common. So much unnecessary negative energy is placed into the third quarter because it is stricter, and getting upset about what is happening to your GPA is the easy thing to do. It is essential to find some sort of comfort in the fact that everyone is in the same place as you are. So just take a breath and a minute to relax and refocus your energy. Instead of thinking about how epically you may be failing, think of what you can do to succeed: look for extra credit, ask for help, study harder. Do not get sucked in too much and get down about your C in Calculus – remember school is only one part of your life. According to PyschologyToday, it is important for students to look for activities to take care of “your soul, your interest, and your heart.” It is necessary to have just as much “me time” as “grind time.” Ultimately, find a balance between fun and school or maybe even mix the two and form study groups with friends to make school work something to look forward to instead of a chore. Hang out with your friends, go on a walk, eat a snack– just do whatever you need to do to forget about the pending assignments you have for a bit and enjoy the moment you are in, because in the grand scheme of things, it will be the positive moments you will remember, not the nights that you stay up until 3 a.m. working on your APUSH homework, or the endless hours spent flipping through Psychology cards. Sometimes it is healthy to do something for yourself instead of doing something for your grade. The third quarter is the one where everyone is swimming with their heads barely above water with projects, due dates and tests, but it is okay, the stress, anxiety and late night homework grinds are temporary. Take it easy.



Barking Mad is a collection of short submissions about things that tick students off around school. If something at school makes you mad, e-mail us at and it may be featured here.

blue print

The BluePrint is a student-produced newspaper in which the student editors make all content decisions. The newspaper belongs to the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, the National Scholastic Press Association and the Florida Scholastic Press Association. Opinions expressed within the newspaper do not represent the staff’s views as a whole (except Hagerty High School for Our Take), the views of Seminole County 3225 Lockwood Blvd. Public Schools or Hagerty High’s administration Oviedo, FL 32765 and staff. For information about advertising in the paper, Phone: (407) 871-0750 please contact us via one of the above methods. We Fax: (407) 871-0817 reserve the right to reject any advertisement.



Airpods: A new trend Olivia Gatchev


Staff Reporter

don’t speak broke,” said Michael Rygh as he pulled out his airpods from his charging box and slipped them in his ears with no struggle. Airpods, the new internet sensation that many people have turned into a meme, are the most purchased gifts for Christmas in 2018. Airpods are sold by Apple and are made to make listening to music and charging your phone easier. Although they have many cool features, the moment I put the Apple AirPods in my ears, I feel like I’ve already dropped them. They are extremely tiny. But other than that, the Apple AirPods might be the best product Apple has produced in years. They’ve gone wireless, and they do it so well. But even though it seems like a small matter, just a wireless headset, the device has fundamentally altered the way people interact. In 2004 Apple started going on this path and ran the “Silhouette” ad campaign for the iPod. This campaign started years before the iPhone when the products were still bulky and big but the point of it was to play music. But then the iTunes Music Store had launched, along with slimmer, cheaper and higher capacity iPods that worked with Windows in addition to Mac. The iPod had another, less obvious impact, too. During this period, from the iPod in 2001 through the iPhone X today, the white Apple earbuds have achieved universal adoption. Every iPod and iPhone comes with a pair of the wired headphone, and the white color was so universally accepted that it became the signature color. The white earbuds weren’t a new design and the sound quality wasn’t great, but they were iconic and cheap. After acclimating to the AirPods, I began wondering if the role earbuds play in technological life has been underestimated. The best way to understand technology is to remove it and go without, only then does its function become needed. You notice this when your car breaks down or when you leave your phone at home and can’t check in with people. The AirPods free you from the earbud cable without requiring the bulk of headphones. The AirPods retain the familiar color and shape for which Apple has been known, so it really does feel the

Editor-in-Chief Ahilyn Aguilar Managing Editor Melissa Donovan Online Editor Bryson Turner

Opinions Editor Katarina Harrison Business Manager Andrea Izaguirre Photographer Chatham Farrell

Staff Reporters Hannah Hadelman Zoey Young Hayden Turner Charlotte Mansur Luke Goodwin Noah Kemper Sharika Khondaker Amelia Anthony Olivia Gatchev

Adviser Brit Taylor Principal Dr. Mary Williams

BUY THE NUMBERS The first model Airpods were released in 2016

Apple sales increased by 26% after Airpods were realeased

Beats by Dre sales decreased by 9% after Aipods realease iPhones update software with a Live Listen feature, allowing the hard-of-hearing to listen closely to their surroudings. same, minus the cord. However his small change has a profound effect. The AirPods feature many deft design choices. The case charges the buds, which magnetically attach inside. When you place one in an ear, a sensor detects the action, and pairs automatically. The same sensor allows the device to pause music when you remove an AirPod. These are slick features that have really advanced this product. Airpods are amazing new internet sensations that people are going crazy over. The improvements Apple has made over the years has really made the AirPods a sensation.

“I think we could implement a better block schedule, kind of like the one we had in middle school.” - Landon Turner, 10

“I think that the bathrooms are just disgusting, some people just don’t clean up after themselves.” - Adrianna Chaves, 10

“I hate the way the parking lot is managed. I know there’s assigned spots for everyone but no one actually cares.” - Nitza Perez, 12

“The pizza is really not that great, which sucks because that’s all that I can eat. I mean, besides the salads but I’d rather not go there.” - Robert Torres, 10

”I don’t like how short break is, I honestly think they can extend it a little bit.” - Michael Rygh, 10

News Editor Emily Cosio Lifestyles Editor Jessica Maldonado Sports Editor Michael Gibson

“I’m not a fan of the pep rally schedule, especially since we haven’t have had one since homecoming.” - Breanna Chery, 11

“The HERO system is just another hassle for students to deal with- especially since I’m not a morning person and I tend to be a little late. I’m not the only one with this problem.” - Maddie Hobbes-Harring, 9 “We need a strong student leadership program that actually has some influence to try to improve our issues. With enough support from the staff I think it could be a really great thing for our community as a whole.” - Seth Reese, 11

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State of the disunion

Hollow words and hot air Katarina Harrison


Column Q

Emily Cosio

Opinions Editor

he State of the Union Address was full of fancy words, but void of any real meaning or plans of meaningful action. Trump’s attempt to appeal to the American public only managed to remind us of the things we deserve in a President, the things he consistently fails to provide. Many of Trump’s most quoted points in his address regard compromise, and getting politicians to work together more and see across the aisle. In fact, for the first moments of the speech, he seems to focus on the nation as a whole. “The agenda I will lay out this evening is not a Republican agenda or a Democrat agenda. It is the agenda of the American people.” President Donald Trump said. All of that sounds nice, but it’s hard to believe he actually means it. After all, less than a month ago this same man was forcing a prolonged government shutdown because he couldn’t get exactly what he wanted. Are we supposed to believe that the President has completely flipped his attitude that quickly? Most of the issues in the speech were addressed on only the most superficial of levels. At one point, he said that his administration plans to destroy both AIDs and childhood cancer — both worthy goals that prompt emotional response, but not anything Trump can take credit for. Especially when his most recent budget plan piles more work on the Institute of Health without increasing their funding by a single penny. A couple of times in the speech, Trump mentions an important issue. He brings up women and their inequality in the workplace, and even hints at a plan to help women in developing countries. “As part of our commitment to improving opportunity for women everywhere...” Trump ad the nerve to lead with. Then, just as quickly, he twists his topic, turning instead to his sanctions against China and other economic decisions. Trump treated women with his usual brisk manner. Tossing in half a sentence with no action behind it is as condescending to the country as Trump regularly is to women. At the heart of Trump’s speech was a message of “choosing greatness,” an idea he twisted again and again until it meant agreeing with him and blindly following his wishes. True greatness lies not in following this man’s vision, but in advocating for the rights of all and a world in which everyone can be successful and happy. Choosing greatness does sometimes mean choosing compromise, but it does not mean bending blindly to the will of anyone else. Find a cause you care about and work to improve the world. That is how we truly choose greatness.

How can I decide between AP and dual enrollment without losing my mind?

Hate of the union



Information by Washington Post

Immigrants already in the U.S. “who are assets to their communities and contribute so much to our country, should be incorporated completely into our society.”

Immigration The proposed platform includes Trump’s signature issue: A wall between the United States and Mexico border.

“America has signed too many trade deals that have not lived up to the hype.”


Trade deals should reflect a policy of “America First.”

“We will continue to oppose—and seek to overturn—federal and state laws and policies that impede a woman’s access to abortion.”

-Democratic National Committee

Have a question for the Advice Column? Email us at

Consider what you want to get out of the classes you’re trying to decide on. Do you want the college experience, or do you want to stay in high school? Spending time at Seminole State can offer a great glimpse into what it would be like to have classes there. It’s also important to think about what classes you want to take and how you learn best. If you don’t like the teacher you have, or if you feel like taking algebra in a college setting would be more beneficial than high school, then do what you feel would be best.

Abortion Includes for emphasis the full text of the Hyde Amendment, which bans using federal funds for any form of abortion.


I need dating advice on how to ask out my crush for Valentine’s Day!


News Editor

resident Donald Trump delivered his second State of the Union Address, organizing his accomplishments and plans for a sensational speech. Trump’s rhetoric, without a doubt, led to his nearly perfect approval rating, 97 percent of the Republican Party. Not surprisingly, 82 percent of people registered as Independent also approved of the address. However, the speech only received a 30 percent approval rate from Democrats. With very few flaws, this number should have been greater, but because of the man delivering it, the speech was wrongfully criticized. Trump had a spectacular gallery, a prime example for several of his discussion points. Topics included budgeting money for childhood cancer research and medical transparency, topics that both parties support. Even with conservative plans, Trump kept everything clear and concise. At this point in his presidency, Trump undergoes constant scrutiny, from both sides. In its entirety, it was a solid, informative, and entertaining address to the States. If Obama gave that exact speech four years ago, he would have been greatly applauded for his performance and his future plans. The people of the country need to realize the trustworthiness of our president. In the opening of the State of the Union Address, Trump established many of his accomplishments. The most emphasized, and the most impressive for that matter, was the increased number of jobs. Since being elected, Trump’s economy has created 5.3 million jobs. With “the hottest economy in the world,” one would think that the president has done a pretty good job in his first couple of years leading the country. Trump promised more jobs, border safety, demanding money from countries, and these guarantees have been kept. So when the president says he is going to do even more for the country, by “bringing issues to reality,”there is no reason not to believe him. People like to use their assumptions and the false information that they receive to hate against Trump. No matter what would have been said, Trump’s opponents would have found to cause for an uproar. Every one of his actions are criticized and held to an impossible standard. For all of the scrutiny and evaluations that the president undergoes, it is remarkable that he even is able to run the country, let alone achieve everything that he has. Instead of holding the leader of our country to an unattainable ideals, let’s keep an open and positive mind for the rest of his presidency. It is quite possible that the president could accomplish all that he promised if he had more support and less hate.

Valentine’s Day is has arrived and it comes with rapid increase in couples. High schoolers can be intimidated when it comes to dating, so you have to be careful in how to go about it. Not overwhelming them with affection is crucial to a successful relationship. Serious commitment can be daunting, and bombarding someone with too much at once is likely to scare them off. Take it slow, wait for the right moment when you are in private to tell them your feelings. It is also important to give them some time to answer. Don’t freak out if they don’t text you back in the next 10 minutes. Most importantly, just remember to not stress out too much and have fun.

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Shane Dawson: YouTube phenomenon

Amelia Anthony

Staff Reporter


hane Dawson’s new releases are electrifying and, for better or for worse, have changed the face of YouTube. Most recently, his newest conspiracy theory video has racked up over 21 million views in just under two weeks. In the past six months, his content has changed and shifted, and his channel has grown immensely. No matter the length, Dawson’s content is watched, shared and discovered obsessively. Most of his audience can’t imagine sitting down and watching any other two-hour YouTube video, but when Shane drops a video, the Internet stops and stares. Before the summer of 2018, Shane Dawson was just another YouTube original struggling to maintain interesting, vivid content after 10 years on the platform. He was close to burning out. But on June 28, he released a 34-minute video titled “The Truth About Tanacon,” and his channel changed forever. In April of 2018, he was gaining about 473,000 new subscribers per month. In June 2018, when his Tanacon documentaries dropped, that number jumped to 1.4 million.

Now, Shane Dawson is something of a household name. The 30 year-old has found a place for himself in a new niche: dynamic documentaries aimed at young audiences, often focusing on YouTube’s most controversial stars. With past controversy of his own, Dawson is quick to take a second-chance outlook, but it doesn’t always end well for him or his subjects. Since June, he is made series focusing on Tana Mongeau, Kathy Griffin, Jeffree Star and Jake Paul. Now, with almost 20.5 million subscribers and a slew of new hate, he just dropped his first conspiracy theory video in over 10 months. Dawson’s series on Jake Paul, which was seven videos and seven hours long, racked up the most controversy and views. Many claimed he was in the wrong for calling Paul a “sociopath” and focusing on a storyline that exploited mental illness for the wrong reasons. Others scrutinized the “redemption arc,” he was given despite his problematic past. It’s no secret that Dawson is all for clickbait. But rather than flashy thumbnails or exaggerated titles, he goes for jaw-dropping cliffhangers and countdowns to video release dates. Most of the time, viewers do not even realize they are being manipulated into watching. But despite the amount of hate he gets, Dawson continually releases content that

“breaks the Internet.” Through it all, Dawson only has three objectives: making everything bigger than it is, inserting his opinion for the sake of it, and unveiling the secret not-so-secret lives of the people the Internet loves to hate most. Conspiracy videos defined Dawson’s channel during the interim period between his “Mixing all fast food restaurants together” stage and the documentaries that would come over a year later. His first consistent series, the conspiracy videos eventually became the hallmark of his YouTube identity. Covering everything from Hillary Clinton to TV messaging, they were uploaded regularly. Now, 10 months after his last installment, spurred on by the desperate cries of YouTube fanatics reeling from his three-month break, Dawson released an Instagram trailer for a new series: Conspiracy Theories with Shane Dawson. Innovative and nostalgic, his new video maintains elements of past conspiracies while adding new elements of storytelling and personal content. In a way only a YouTube veteran can, he expertly organizes information into exactly what viewers have been asking for without sacrificing any of his trademark dramatic charm. Covering iPhone conspiracies,

“DNA” by The Backstreet Boys

“New Moon” by Kill Bill the Rapper and Rav

Like any other platinum Backstreet Boys album, the focus of “DNA,” released on Jan. 25, revolves around eternal heartbreak, undying devotion and the general sappiness one would expect from an early 2000s boy band. Tracks like “Just Like You Like It” and “Passionate” bring nothing new, and it feels like they are just trying to appeal to the younger generations in both content and lingo, and sadly, they are failing. This album’s one saving grace would be the lead single, “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,” which peaked on the Billboard Hot 100 chart at 63, their first charted hit since 2007. Overall, this album is lacking, but the band’s name carries enough weight to sell a sufficient amount

“New Moon” is Kill Bill and Rav’s latest album collaboration. They are not as well known in the music world, but if you are a fan of lofi and rap with a fun twist, you need to listen to this album. Songs like “Lovedrug (Off That)” and “Saffron” are understandably the fan favorites, as they are some of the most upbeat and exciting ones in the album. Other songs like “Cult” are a little too obscure and seem to come out of left field, but regardless, the album is a refreshing and unique take on rap music. - Lukas Goodwin

of copies to soccer moms.

- Andrea Izaguirre

“Lionheart” Netflix Original From the terrific acting to the compelling plot, “Lionheart” meets all expectations. Adaeze must fight her way in the “man’s world” in order to save her father’s failing bus company. Not only does this movie send positive messages about feminism, but it is also a feel-good movie for all ages. Although classified as a drama, Lionheart has a great sprinkling of comedic elements that leave the viewer with happy feelings. This ground breaking film deserves more attention, it checks every box for the perfect movie.

- Emily Cosio

“A Series of Unfortunate Events” Season 3

“A Real Good Kid” starts out with encouraging the reader to put aside their obligations, put in their headphones and devote 40 minutes of their undivided attention to the album without pause. I originally lamented the waste of time — after all, music is supposed to be background noise. But, the more I listened, the more certain I was that I had made the right decision. The album asks for a lot of your time and attention, but it deserves every second.

The third and final season of “A Series of Unfortunate Events” was released on Netflix on Jan. 1. It continues to follow the Baudelaire children (Malina Weissman, Louis Hynes, and Presley Smith) as they aim to figure out more about the Volunteer Fire Department while trying to escape the clutches of the evil Count Olaf (Neil Patrick Harris) and Esme Squalor (Lucy Punch). Overall, there are some shocking and sad moments, but with nothing that was incredibly special. The series wrapped up well though, with a big plot twist near the end, keeping it intriguing and unexpected. It is a bingeworthy series to watch on a Friday night.

- Katarina Harrison

- Sharika Khondaker

“A Real Good Kid” by Mike Posner

television brainwashing, and the California wildfires, the new video proves two things: Dawson can create content out of anything, from testing Siri’s constant surveillance to faceswapping with YouTube Rewind celebrities. And despite his decade of video making, he’s far from teetering on the edge of creator burnout. In fact, he’s building a life and career on the foundation he’s created: ushering in a new side of YouTube, and a new Shane. Read the full story on


Netflix Original “Nytflyers”

As long as you are not paying attention, the Netflix show Nytflyers is somewhat bearable to watch. The costumes and set are fine, and the action sequences play the right music to build up suspense, but if you start to actually pay attention to what is happening, the show falls apart pretty quickly. Dull characters force out unnatural lines in a desperate attempt to explain a highly convoluted plot, and the viewer is left confused about a story they do not care about. At best, Nytflyers is passable background noise— at worst it is an absolute waste of your time and attention.

- Katarina Harrison

“The Wizrd” by Future Considering this is Future’s seventh album, one would think he would have his trade perfected. However, “The Wizrd” was neither innovative nor anything but average. Not to overgeneralize the album, but truly every song on it had a similar sound and a similar message. And while this is not necessarily a bad thing, for an experienced rapper, there should be a higher expectation for him. Compared to so many other great and more inventive artists, this album is not worth the time.

- Emily Cosio

“Tidying Up with Marie Kondo” Netflix Original Released on Netflix on Jan. 1, Tidying Up with Marie Kondo follows Kondo as she goes from house to house showing people how to get organized, using her personal method. The KonMari method is to keep the items that spark joy, starting with clothing and ending with miscellaneous items. The way that Marie gets really excited about helping people organize is adorable and so pure. While watching the show, one really does get filled up with joy because it is so heartwarming to see that she is making a positive impact on other people’s lives.

- Sharika Khondaker

Remember me WHEN you’re

Famou Social media users find ways to grow followers Andrea Izaguirre


Staff Reporter

iving among us, often unrecognized, a select few choose to wield the doubleedged sword of social media fame. In order to “achieve their dreams” and build a social influencer brand, these students endure the conflicts, hassles and expectations of satisfying their thousands of followers watching their every move through social media platforms such as Instagram and YouTube. As the world becomes more connected through social media, those who aspire to be branded influencers do whatever it takes to make themselves stand out from the crowd. Sophomore Matt Parr (@mparrc) has 16,200 followers on Instagram, and he attributes this to many things, including the business partnership he shares with his friend, sophomore Gio Piloto (@papitogiooo) who has a current follower count of 12,400. Through creative marketing and extensive picture taking, both Piloto and Parr have strived to reach a significant audience through different forms of media content, including viral videos, rap covers, and modeling. Sophomore Josie Bomba (@josefinabomba) who has 2,300 followers on Instagram, does not want to work that hard, “I’ve done some shoutouts, but I’m really not that into self promotion.” Freshman Barbara Cullen (@barbaracullenn), with 3,244 followers on Instagram is not chasing fame either, “I don’t even know how I got this many followers really.” However, to get to numbers like Piloto and Parr have done, self promotion turned out to be

the rise of social media


The first YouTube video “Me at the Zoo,” a 19-second video, was posted by the site’s cofounder Jawed Karim.


a significant factor. “When we started out we didn’t think we’d get this big,” Piloto said. “Our goal was to hit 10k by senior year and here we are.” Parr also said that using Instagram’s promotions feature helped in their success. “It’s basically a pay-for-exposure gig where followers offer shout-outs on their feeds and stories for a certain amount of time,” Parr said. Although maintaining the impression that he has earned the majority of his followers on his own is important, Piloto concedes to the fact that promos are what helped boost his numbers by the thousands in just a few months. “I got so popular I was actually able to start charging for my shout-outs, like people would pay me $10 to be on my story and $20 to be on my feed for 24 hours,” said Piloto. “I was making $150 a week.” Parr also had a promo profit system where he charged $4 per story and $8 per feed post for 24 hours. Through quick-money apps such as Cashapp, PayPal and Venmo, influencers like Piloto and Parr are able to earn cash and rewards from their followers and other aspiring influencers as well. “We’ve actually pulled back from all the promos for now,” Parr said. “They were starting to annoy our fans and we actually started to lose followers instead.” The fickleness of the Internet can add extra stress to a student’s already heavy burden. For those who choose to live this double lifestyle, although the repercussions of maintaining the title “influencer” can come with costs, students who take part in the trend have different

“Gangnam Style” by PSY was released. It held the record for most viewed video, with 3.43 billion views.

reasonings. Having a can be potentially ben balances out the hassle public demand. “I’m constantly che Parr. “There’s always sometimes it messes wi For some, the prosp career centered around relevancy seems appeal Piloto said, “I starte viral videos and some plan on using my platfo of entrepreneur busines online clothing retail m Though he knows quickly change, Piloto a my followers active I th a living.” Parr, on the other h pursuing a career in tele to use his social media p potential connections. “It’s a really comp being considered a relev get my name out there.” In the same sense, B continuing my Instagr to jumpstart both my m YouTube channel.” Although none of t the traditional model o the rise of the social very well “Change the and producers,” said Pi his rising social media make some actual mone

2012 Instagram becomes one of the most popular apps, reaching more than 80 million users.


Sierra Furtado

“Sierra seemed like she had the perfect life and making videos seemed so cool to me.” -Susan Gomez, 11

• 2.7K subscribers • 190 videos • Popular for YouTube makeup tutorials and vlogging


Influencers who inspire students Jackie Aina

• 2.9K subscribers • 826 videos • Popular for YouTube makeup tutorials

“Jackie supports the makeup side of art. I thought I could use YouTube as a platform to share my art.” -Chekina Nze, 12

“I make videos based on other users on the app and make fun of them.” -Briana Lopez, 10

#boyschallenge • Trend on TikTok • 48.6K views


Chris Pratt • 482 posts

• Instagram influencer “Chris [inspires me] because he is goofy and it is entertaining to look through his [posts].” - Zach Flores,12

“I used to put a lot of effort in and edit and post a couple times a day.” -Victoria Wilburn, 11

social media presence neficial, which in turns e of upkeeping with the

ecking my phone,” said updates and honestly, ith my sleeping habits.” pects of creating a future their own schedule and ling. ed all this with a couple freelance rapping but I orm to go into some kind ss, something to do with most likely.” that online trends can adds, “ As long as I keep hink I’ll be able to make

hand, has ambitions of evision acting and plans presence to enhance his

petitive field and I think vant influencer will help ” said Parr. Bomba, said “I plan on ram aesthetic in order modeling debut and my

these career options fit of a successful future, influencer trend may e course of consumers iloto, who hopes to turn into “career options to ey.”


Tik Tok provides 15 seconds of fame, or at least fun Ahilyn Aguilar



reshman Raelin Loveland puts on a spiky blonde wig and a casual fitted suit. He preps his face with foundation and uses an eyebrow pencil to draw details, making him resemble Katsuki Bakugou; one of the multiple cosplay characters he uses to make his TikTok. Loveland is one out of millions to use TikTok, an app that allows users to record a 15-second video, usually with background music. TikTok grew in popularity in 2014, when it was first released as but, after ByteDAnce Company bought it, the app gained its new name and look. “I made my account when was really famous in 2016. My friends did it and had fun so I decided to try it and I liked it,” freshman Ashlee Pollack said. At first, TikTok was used for mostly lip-syncing videos, giving fame to everyday people like current singer, BabyAriel. However, when Vine was taken down in 2017, TikTok took its place as the new meme-making app. As more memes rise every day from

Instagram launches Direct Messages, a new feature that allows users to chat and send posts through the app.


social media, TikTok users, like Loveland, use the app as an opportunity to show their originality in short clips. With two accounts, Loveland focuses his TikToks on 15-second long parodies, incorporating cosplay characters from time to time. Although Loveland puts effort into his TikTok videos and dedicates between 1530 minutes to film each, he does not expect to get fame from the app. Instead, he sees it more as a hobby that he does about once a week. Like Loveland, freshman Megan Lundstrom uses TikTok as a creative getaway. Starting in 2015, Lundstrom grew her audience to 658 fans by making “goofy” videos resembling popular trends like the Shrek meme and the Zeze Challenge. With 321 fans, Pollack became popular when she filmed a TikTok that recreated a funny clip from user flareplopadoodle. The clip included her falling off a pile of clothes, a segment she decided to leave in the video to get more likes. After a few days, the TikTok had more than 8,000 likes and 72,000 views. “In TikTok you definitely need to be original because if they’ve seen [the TikTok] before no one is going to like it,” Lundstrom

“Despacito” by Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee breaks records with 31.96 million likes and 5.96 billion views.


Youtube has 1.8 billion users, and more than 5 billion videos watched per day.

said. “If you do something really funny and try to look stupid, people will like it better.” TikToks are only 15 seconds long, but, the “perfect” video involves multiple retakes as well as mastering a recording technique. For Lundstrom, it takes at least 20 minutes to make a TikTok, depending on the type of meme she is trying to recreate. During that time, she redoes the clip about five to 10 times. For Lundstrom and Pollack, filming a TikTok requires knowing how to get the most out of 15 seconds. That includes filming in segments, which allows them to have different sceneries and use camera movements to their advantage. “I never film my TikToks in just one take, it’s always in segments,” Lundstrom said. “It makes the viewer not expect what you’re going to do next or where you’re going to appear on their screen.” As TikTok gains more popularity, fame gets harder to reach, but, it is a popular hobby for those who want to get creative during their spare time. “I record videos mostly as something to do when I’m bored, I don’t hope to get famous from it. But, if it happens, I’m not [opposed] to the idea,” Pollack said.


Chris Godfrey’s post of an egg becomes the most-liked picture on Instagram, with 52.5 million likes.

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A second chance


FOREVER FAMILY Seniors Alexa Edney (top) and Jacob Pike (below) were both adopted at young ages. While they ackknowledge they are different, they believe it is something unique and special.


The life experience of adoption is more common than people think Zoey Young


Staff Reporter

hen senior Geno Simmons’ teacher started to call his mom, he did not understand what was going on. He had just told his classmates that he was from Russia, and his teacher was concerned. She thought he was telling the class fiction; Simmons was not. Adopted from Russia at age 3, Simmons has always known his story was unique. His parents never hid the information and he has always been open about it. Similarly, senior Jacob Pike, who is adopted from Fort Walton Beach, Florida, is always willing to talk about his adoption; he believes it is something that makes him unique. “Being adopted is pretty important to me. It definitely sets me apart because I do not have that true blood connection that most families do,” Pike said. Junior Joshua Rosenblatt feels that it is part of his identity and that being adopted has shaped who he is. Adopted at birth in the United States, Rosenblatt is the only person of Hispanic descent in his family, something that makes him stand out further. He acknowledges that without adoption, he would not have the same life he has now. Often, adopted children are born into unstable environments: Rosenblatt’s birth-mother was 17, trying to raise one of his siblings while also being homeless. She was unable to support Rosenblatt and had to give him up for adoption. “It is funny knowing that one decision could have altered my life permanently. She was living on her own, raising one of my siblings trying to make ends meet, so my life would be much harder if I had not been adopted,” Rosenblatt said.Adoption can also raise issues, not just problems with their past. These include being left out of certain activities. Freshman Alexa Young had to miss out because she did not have the information required to do a school project in elementary school; instead she spent the day sitting in the principal’s office. There is also a variety of feelings adopted children have about their birth parents, such as whether or not they would want to see them again. Pike believes that he might eventually reach out to his biological mother, but he has no idea what he would say. Rosenblatt would also want to know his biological family as well. “I would want to see them, so I know where I came from. I would also like to catch up with them to see how they have done with life and where they have ended up,” Rosenblatt said. On the other hand, Senior Katie Carlson, who was adopted from China, would turn down the chance to meet her birth parents; adoption rarely crosses her mind as she is accustomed to the life she has now. “If given the opportunity to meet my biological parents, I wouldn’t. I just have no interest in doing so and think some things of the past are best unanswered,” Carlson said. Edney also understands that her birth parents loved her enough to give her a chance at a better life, yet she does not want to meet them. Many students are grateful for where they are today. Simmons cannot imagine anywhere else he would be; he believes that his parents are “great and will always be,” and is content. For the full story, visit

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Notes from the Dear Hannah, Roses are RED, Violets are BLUE, my life is BLESSED bc of YOU! Happy National Single Awareness Day, remember you are loved by so many, always! Happy Galentines Day TEXAS girl, ilysm and I am so proud of you! -Maegan Drewry Dear Ashley, Your eyes sparkle like the stars, your hair cascades like a waterfall, and your smile is brighter then the sun. I love everything about you, inside and out your beauty, charm, and grace have completely enraptured me. I’m overwhelmed with feelings of devotion every time I look at you. Happy Valentine’s Day! -Mr. Anonymous Dear World Geography, Happy Valentine’s Day 1st Period World Geography! -Mrs. Hernandez Dear school, I lost the game.

-Samuel Mallas

Dear Emma, You mean the world to me. I love you so much. -Dylan Mitchell

Dear World Geography, Happy Valentines Day 2nd Period World Geography! -Mrs. Hernandez Dear World Geography, Happy Valentines Day 3rd Period World Geography! -Mrs. Hernandez

Dear Jared, I love you more than a fat kid loves cake, more than my brother loves his cars, more than your mom loves Java, more than you love Asian food, and more than I love red pandas. Overall, I love you a lot. Thank you for being with me and loving me back bean. -Cath Fuller

Dear ‘Broskies’, You guys have #blessed my life! Love you almost as much as I love Claudia’s brother. -Melissa Donovan Dear Jillian, Jilly-Bean: Happy Galentines Day! Remember STRONG is BEAUTIFUL and a reminder you are loved! I am SO proud of all you do and somehow still get surprised by all you do, I love you SO very much! -Maegan Drewry

Dear Mizbah, Mizbah, you are my mizboo. Nothing compares to the love I have for you. You give me mizbliss. When I graduate, you will be missed. -Shayne Watson

Dear Camila, Roses are RED, Violets are BLUE, I cannot “max” back-squats like you! Happy National Single Awareness Day, remember you are never alone! You are loved and I am so proud of you, Happy Galentines day!! -Maegan Drewry

Dear World Geography, Happy Valentines Day 4th Period World Geography! -Mrs. Hernandez

Dear Madison, ROSES are red, VIOLETS are blue, my life is blessed bc of you! Happy Valentines Day, just a reminder you are loved! Thanks for being the best friend and sister I could ask for, love you always so very much! -Maegan Drewry Dear World Geography, Happy Valentines Day 5th Period World Geography! -Mrs. Hernandez Dear Kara and everybody else, Our friendship (milly) rocks. Happy Galentines Day! -Melissa Donovan

Florida, University of Florida, Florida State University and University of Central Florida, there is a common theme that propels them to reconsider. “Students can get their admissions taken away for a variety of reasons,” Andrew Telatovich, associate director of in-state recruitment at the University of South Florida said. “It could be because they have failed a core class, lost requirements that were previously needed for admission, or changed their schedule.” If a student were to fail a core class that is needed for credits or admission, this would cause the university to reconsider. Despite this, there is no need to freak out if a grade drops during the middle of the year. Universities only see grades when students apply, and after graduation when final transcripts are sent. A bad grade on a math test is no reason for major stress. It will not ruin the future, unless that grade is carried to the end of the year. Additionally, if a student were to say there were going to take three AP classes and four honors classes when applying, but ended up changing their schedule and taking all standard, this is something that would cause

the university to reconsider their admission offer. Students have to keep up with what was promised on the application, because that is what got them accepted. Getting admission revoked is not only based off of academics. At UCF, there is a separate office that looks at high school conduct issues and legal issues with law enforcement. If a student were to get arrested after getting accepted, that office, reviews the case and decides whether or not it is something worth withdrawing the acceptance. According to Kate Sundquist on the college vine blog, in the fall of 2009, 22 percent of colleges said they had revoked their admission offer from a student. She adds that it is safe to say that with the increase of social media use and popularity, this number has at least remained constant if not risen. Although getting admission dropped seems like a myth that guidance counselors and parents engrave in seniors’ brains, it is not. Although it is not something that happens often, it can happen, so make sure to keep core class grades high and maintain the academic requirements that you applied with to avoid this issue, because it could severely alter your future.

Dear Zoey, Roses are red, we are reading Life of Pi, you are a furry, but so am I. -Eileen An

Dear World Geography, Happy Valentines Day 7th Period World Geography! -Mrs. Hernandez Dear Ahilyn, I am wishing you all the best in life because you are my number one. The queen of my heart. I appreciate you for everything you’ve done in my life. I love you so much. -Michael Behrends.

Mythbusting: college admission offers revoked?

Hannah Hadelman


Staff Reporter

heard Ashley has had straight A’s all year but got a B and now she’s dropped from Honors College.” “Jason told me that he is freaking out because he has a C for the quarter and thinks his admission will be revoked.” As a senior it is a normal feeling to be nervous about having your college admission affected if you were to “drop the ball” your last semester. Counselors, teachers and parents make it known that once students are admitted, it is not time to relax. Seniors have to keep their academics up because even if they already got accepted, slacking off can cause the university to reconsider their application. There can be major consequences if a student were to give up their last semester because they have already been accepted. This includes every senior’s worst nightmare: getting their admission revoked. Some may make it seem that the smallest flaw in a student’s final semester could get their admission offer taken away. After interviewing the admissions offices of University of South

JUNIOR OPTIMIST INTERNATIONAL & YOUTH PALS Get service hours helping the special needs community Meetings every Thursday in 6-202 WE NEED YOU!

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Parkland timeline Feb. 14, 2018 Parkland shooting kills 17 teachers, students and staff.

Mar. 5, 2018 MSD act, which banned bump stocks, passed in Florida.

Mar. 14, 2018 National School Walkout day. Hundreds of schools participated in walkouts at 10:17 a.m.

Mar. 24, 2018

March for our Lives in DC - 800 sister marches, 2 million in attendance.

In 2018... 28 states and DC passed a total of 67 laws against gun violence.

Jan. 2019 “Hard corners” introduced in Florida classrooms


Lifestyles Editor

ne year ago today tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School left 17 people dead and many families destroyed. Former student Nikolas Cruz pulled the fire alarm and opened fire on students and teachers with an AR-15. Since then events have happened in support of making gun laws stricter and preventing an event like to this to ever happen again. On Feb. 21 2018, Parkland survivors, including Emma Gonzalez, went to a town hall meeting in Sunrise, Florida with Senators Marco Rubio, Bill Nelson, Rep. Ted Deutch and NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch. During this meeting supporters talked about gun violence and NRA’s position on legal modifications to semi-automatic weapons. On March 24, the student-led March for Our Lives took place in Washington D.C. to advocate for stronger gun laws. Hashtags like #NeverAgain and #March4OurLives fueled a wave of social media action. New laws and bills were passed, varying from state to state, but the most common changes on gun control included raising the minimum age to purchase a gun to 21, banning bump stocks and expanding background checks. Although it seems that much has changed and gun violence being prevented, to some, the opposite is true. “Some laws have passed to help the cause, which is amazing, but there have been over 20 school shootings since Parkland,” senior Avery Watson said. “It’s hard to feel that there is a difference because you turn on the news, and once again there’s another school shooting.” Since the massacre at Parkland, there have been shootings at schools across the nation: Savannah State University, Central Michigan University, Great Mills High School in Maryland, Huffman High School in Alabama, Forest High School in Florida, and Santa Fe High School in Texas. One year later, fear still lingers far in

students, teachers and administrators; one year later the fear of having to hide under desks or behind bookshelves is very real. As a teacher and as a mother of two kids, English teacher Samantha Richardson comes into and send her kids to school with a different attitude than before Parkland. “I’m still fearful of another event happening, [therefore] I come into school more aware of my surroundings, I always monitor my students with their behavior and emotional levels,” Richardson said. “However, my biggest concern is as a mother sending my own kids to school, because every day I send them with a fear that something could happen.” Teachers are not the only people who come to school looking for warning signs or their nearest exits. Students, come to school every day and with thoughts of “What if?” and “What would I do?” in the back of their minds. “I’m in school, a place where I’m supposed to learn, and I’m thinking of exits and items I could use to block the doors or defend myself with,” senior Valeria Rivera said. “I hate that I feel that I always have to think ‘What will I do?’” Teachers and staff, especially SRO David Attaway, have implemented stricter rules in place to keep the school safe. There are more door checks, fewer people allowed to enter the school, and a “safe spot” has been added to every classroom. The safe spot is a corner marked with red tape, and in case of an emergency, all students are supposed to go to that corner to hide. “We’re pretty forward thinking, so we adjusted a few things, but we had so much in place already and we were far beyond than they were,” Attaway said. “Just awareness among our staff became a little better.” Even with heightened awareness, the fact that it is one year since Parkland and the dangers bring shock to people and are still very real. “When I saw ‘One Year Anniversary’ the shock of everything happening just hit me all over again,” Richardson said. “I can’t believe that a year has passed and we are still on the same page.”

“It’s hard to feel that there is a difference because you turn on the news, and there it is again – another school shooting.”


Char-casm Hand me Samoa Cookies


Charlotte Mansur

anuary is like one big reset button. It’s a time to throw out the eggnog and grab a coconut water. Gyms become life-size sardine cans with eager people dying to start their new exercise routines. For one month, America decides it is done being the obesity capital of the world and swears its allegiance to kale. That is, until the Girl Scouts get involved. Every January they roll out their wagons and terrorize the world with sickeningly cute faces and villainous cookies.

Once they are out, you can’t escape them. Like setting up at every grocery store, post office, and DMV in the country wasn’t enough, now you can fuel your darkest cookie desires through online ordering. That means Girl Scouts now take credit cards, meaning the foolproof “Sorry, I don’t have any cash” excuse is dead. With their cute faces and pushy parents, it is impossible to tell them no. Telling a Girl Scout you won’t buy their cookies is like kicking a puppy. Not only will you feel incredibly guilty, but the town moms will gossip about you for days to come. It’s not like you don’t want to support their dreams of being a young entrepreneur, it’s just that if you buy one more box of Thin Mints you won’t be able to fit in your pants the next morning. Not to mention, the cookies are alarmingly good. What about these cookies makes it so effortless to eat an entire box in a night? I mean there is no other reasonable explanation other than crack, or maybe just lots of sugar. Either way Girl Scouts are slowly fattening up America cookie by cookie, and if this isn’t a modern-day Hansel and Gretel story, I don’t know what is.

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Team: Varsity Basketball DATE: Jan. 28 GAME: vs. Lyman

Who: Brice



Freshman foward Brice Sensabaugh hit a clutch threepoint, buzzerbeating shot for the win against Lyman, 55-58. This helped improve the team’s regular season record to 15-10. “In the moment I was extremely satisfied by the fact that we were able to win after a long game,” Sensabaugh said. “It was my redemption from my missed buzzerbeater against Liberty.”

Girls basketball ends historic season Noah Kemper

Staff Reporter


ith two minutes left in the game, shooting guard Megan Reilly scored a three pointer, setting a school record of eight three pointers made in a single game, and on Wednesday, Feb. 5, the girls basketball team beat Viera 53-18 in the divisional quarterfinals. In the first quarter, both teams started out slow, missing most of their shots, but toward the end of the first, Reilly hit deep three from the left side of the court giving the girls team an 8-6 lead entering the second quarter. After the start of the second, the girls team swung the momentum by going on a 11-0 run, including two more threes by Reilly and the run was capped off by a key rebound by center Laila Viator. Toward the end of the first half, the girls team extended their lead to 14 by hitting two free throws at the line. At halftime, the team was up 26-12. During the third quarter, Viator was driving through the lane and scored on an and-one foul completing a three-point play. The girls team outscored Viera by 15 in the third quarter after their defense held Viera to under 30 percent shooting and just four points. Before the end of the third, Viator grabbed another key rebound and scored on a foul for an and-one situation. Late in the game, Reilly hit her eighth three of the game, giving the team their largest lead of the game at 51-16. In the second half, the 27-6 run solidified their first-ever playoff win with a final score of 53-18. The team was led by Reilly, who scored 28 points, and Viator stood out with nine rebounds. “The team performed really well. We went 14-0 at home which is also a girls basketball school record,” head coach Joshua Johns said. In the semi-finals, the girls team fell short against Melbourne, 87-61, ending their season.

THREE SHOW, THREE CHEERS Senior Megan Reilly shoots a three pointer against Oviedo. The team came up short in that game, 37-36. photo by Chatham Farrell


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Lifters get sixth at state Hayden Turner


Staff Reporter

he stage was set, and the team was ready. With a 6:15 wake up time, the girls weightlifting team woke up with nerves and excitement of what would be a day for the record books. Arriving for weigh-in at Arnold High School, there was something different for senior team captain Cheyenne DuCharme in her fourth year at the state championships. Ducharme had a 12th place finish her freshman year and had been runner-up the last two years. When DuCharme was a junior, her best moment was tying the state record with a 170-pound bench. However, her two-lift total left her just out of the top spot. Now in her final year, she would write a new record. DuCharme took home gold in the 110-pound weight class with a 335-pound total. Her bench press was 165 pounds while her clean-and-jerk was 170, and the total was a new state record by 40 pounds. The school sent eight lifters to the state championship; the previous record was four. Junor Jillian Lawrenson placed third in the 169-pound weight class, with a 375 pound total. Julianna Orlando placed sixth in the 199-pound weight class, and junior Kate Enot placing fifth with a 335-pound total. For the team, the road to states consisted of three runner-up finishes in the conference, district and regional championships, followed by the sixth-place finish at states. With a resume of over 10 new records, and

a near perfect 6-1 regular season, throughout the year DuCharme’s performance added to this total at the state championship. Before the state championship, the girls were nine points short of first in districts, and another second place regional finish. Regional performances by Orlando, Lawrenson in the, and sophomore Olivia Lipari in the 129 pound class. They all scored points to secure the top six finish at states. Aside from Ducharme and Lipari and senior Abigail Duncan, the rest of the lifters were in the first session at 7 a.m. “It was a little nerve racking as it’s the biggest competition of the season, but we took it one step at a time and worked together to stay calm,” Lipari said. DuCharme has been lifting weights as a kid and been a member of CrossFit Oviedo, owned by Attaway, for most of her life. “I’ve worked so hard for all of my life to get where I am today,” Ducharme said. DuCharme plans to continue her weightlifting career for the USA weightlifting team. Four points short of second place in their sixth place state finish, Attaway is proud of the team’s accomplishments. “This is the greatest team I have ever coached and probably will ever coach,” Attaway said. “This is by far the most fantastic group of people I’ve ever worked with.” With four of the eight being seniors, the program will seek upcoming students to accomplish the team’s ultimate goal. “Next year we can be even better,” Attaway said.


BOYS BASKETBALL HOSTS SENIOR NIGHT Boys basketball regular season is officially coming to a close as they hosted Senior Night to honor Nick DeClou, Jeremiah Wilson and Lincoln Mitchell. DeClou and Mitchell have played at Hagerty since their freshman year while Wilson joined the team last year. Wilson and Mitchell were unable to play however, both due to foot/ leg injuries. The team won by 40 points though led by freshman Jah Nze. “It sucks to not be able to play on my senior night but the four years have been amazing and I couldn’t ask for a better group of seniors to play with,” Mitchell said.

12 ATHELETES SIGN FOR SIGNING DAY On Tuesday, Feb. 4, twelve seniors signed on the NCAA’s second National Signing Day. Notable signees are, Central Florida’s football signee Matt Lee, baseball’s Florida International signee Vaugh Grissom, Florida signee Riley Greene, and St. Leo lacrosse signees Kyle Croteau and Landon Spangenburg. This class of seniors is currently three committs away from tying the school record for most seniors to commit and play division 1 sports. “Growing up I knew I had to earn college, and actually getting here is a great feeling and I am very greatful,” Grissom said. TRACK AND FIELD BEGINS SEASON The first track and field meet of the season is on Wednesday, Feb. 13 at Trinity Prep. This is the first meet in a six meet regular season before the conference and district championships. The meet will include cross country standout senior Adam Mastrobuono running in three events as well as multiple underclassman making their debuts on the track. Varsity track will not compete again until Feb. 22. “This is my senior year so I really have to go out and give it my all,” Mastrobuono said.

DO YOU EVEN LIFT? Junior Camila Pagan attempts her second clean and jerk attempt at the district championships. The team would place second, nine points behind Winter Springs. photo by DSP

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HANDS UP FOR HAGERTY The team holds up signs during the state championship. The team scored a season high 88 points. (top) The team hits a stunt. (bottom left) The team celebrates after winning states. (bottom left middle) Lauren Lee waves pom poms during the cheer. (bottom right middle) The team dances during part of their cheer. (bottom right) photos by Michael Gibson

Cheerleading wins second state title in a row, fifth in last six years Michael Gibson


Sports Editor

t all came down to this: the varsity cheerleading team had to hit one more performance to capture the fifth state title in the last six years, and for many on the team, their second in a row. The team huddled in the tunnel for a last minute confidence boost before competing, shouting “We can do this!” as they did before every competition. After their name was called they ran onto the mat, jumping and waving; little did they know they were about to make history. “Running onto the mat I had lots of energy and nerves in my body,” junior Camila Pagan said. “Seeing the crowd we had and

support from the arena made it all worth it.” The cheerleaders left everything they had on the mat, and it paid off as they finished the routine with only one fall. As they came off the mat, the fall worried them less than rival Bartram Trail would do. Bartram Trail had beaten the team every time they faced off this season including the regional finals. Yet Hagerty had beaten them in the last two of three state finals. After the last team of the night performed, the teams lined the mat for the winner to be announced. As the announcer called Bartram Trail for second place their faces were visibly distraught, but a few teams down Hagerty girls were already crying with joy as they knew they had won. Once their name was announced as the state champions the whole team jumped up in the air in excitement, except for senior X’Zaria Bullard who fell to her knees in disbelief as she had just won her first state championship. “Winning states was a feeling I can’t even describe,” Bullard said. “When they called our name I couldn’t cry because I was so shocked. It was an experience I will never forget.” The road to states was not easy or smooth though. The team escaped the regional finals in second place with two falls and multiple bobbles. The second place finish was unexpected, and

not enough to beat Bartram Trail, but it was enough to qualify them straight to the state finals. That was all they needed. “Finding out we got second and made it straight to finals was definitely a weight lifted off my shoulders,” Pagan said. “Knowing we didn’t have our best performance pushed us to work harder so we could go into states as confident as ever.” In the state finals the team proved once again why they are the best cheerleading team in the state. The team is very young, with only five seniors. The team moved multiple JV girls up, and they have lived up to the expectations. The team has had many trials this season, with some girls leaving the team and other girls doing multiple sports at the same time. Pagan and junior Jillian Lawrenson did weightlifting at the same time as cheer and both competed at states. The season was not over for them though as they competed in nationals and worlds this past weekend and placed seventh in the nation and third in the world. All year, the girls’ motto was to make their own legacy and they did that as their season officially comes to a close. “This season will always have a special place in my heart,” Pagan said. “The bond we’ve formed this season will stay with us even after we go our own way.”

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Wrestlers have postseason titles in their grip Katarina Harrison


Opinions Editor

hasing a district championship win from last year, the boys wrestling team will wrestle in the FHSAA State Series beginning next week for the chance to become back-to-back champions. “We are working hard preparing to defend our SAC and district championships,” head coach Scotty Diaz said. “We are looking forward to another chance to win a regional title and earn a trophy at the state tournament.” The team has placed within the top three of the district every year since 2015, but last year was their first time they won a championship. This year, the team has already won a number of matches, even qualifying for the state dual tournament, and finishing runner-up to Winter Springs in the SAC Championships.

ON TOP OF HIS GAME Sophomore Dylan Kohn wrestles against Chase Chapdelaine from Winter Springs during a match at Freedom High in the 132-pound weight class.

Before the Individually Bracketed Tournaments that make up February and March, the team competed in the FHSAA dual meet championship in January. In a dual style competition, one wrestler from each team competes at each weight class, earning points through a win or pin. The team as a whole advances or gets eliminated. “All the guys have been working hard all year,” sophomore Dylan Kohn said. “You get to do it with them and just go through it together.” In the dual competitions, Hagerty won a first-round match against Freedom High School, a match in which three consecutive wrestlers pinned their opponents to secure a team victory. The team also went head to head with Winter Springs once more, this time achieving victory in the heads-up meet. Then the team lost in the state quarterfinals to Fleming Island, 36-25, turning the focus

IN CHARGE Head coach Scotty Diaz cheers his team on from the sidelines. Diaz led the wrestlers to a team third-place finish last season.

to from the dual style of competition to IBT competitions, where many of the wrestlers will likely face Winter Springs wrestlers in both districts and regionals. While many successful Hagerty wrestlers have returned this season to help, both schools feature returning wrestlers that placed in last year’s state meet. Top wrestlers include Kohn, junior Logan Perkins, and seniors Ethan Woods and Ryan Rowland. “With the state series coming up, I’m excited to see how much these kids have improved,” assistant coach Juan Arroyo said. To get to this point, wrestlers have been training several days a week both at school and at the Florida Southeast Regional Training Center. During practices, they mix a variety of conditioning and technique drills to improve. “My favorite part of being on the team is hanging out with the guys and getting better,” Perkins said. “Seeing our progress on the

season, seeing everyone get better and achieving their goals.” Although this part of the season focuses on individual matches, the points are shared as a team, and the wrestlers are looking to continue their momentum of last year’s third place finish. This has seniors like Matt Byers mentoring their underclassmen teammates. “I think they’re doing really well,” Byers said, “and they’re going to do well carrying the team next year.” Before Byers brings his high school wrestling career to a close, his main focus, like everyone on the team, has been the individual postseason, which kicks off with the district championship, which this season is hosted in the competition gym on Feb. 23. “I expect to make it to states,” Byers said. “Everybody’s working hard to make everybody push harder.”

ON THE RUN Senior Matt Byers struggles against his opponent as he attempts an escape. In wrestling, an escape adds one point to the wrestler’s score.

ALL TIED UP Senior Ethan Woods wrestles against his Winter Spring opponent, Hayden McCandles. Hagerty and Winter Springs have gone head to head several times and will battle again in the FHSAA State Series.


Coach Scotty Diaz instructs his wrestlers from beside the mat. Last year, Diaz led his team of wrestlers to victory at the district championship.

photos by Stephen Dowell

Boys soccer beats Olympia for first regional win Noah Kemper


ON DEFENSE Midfielder Kelvin Zinck makes a run down the field

against Lake Howell on Dec. 7. The team won the game 2-1.

photo by Juliana Joyner

Staff Reporter

ith the season on the line, Kelvin Zinck lined up for what could be his final kick of the season. After a moment, he runs up and blasts the ball into the back of the net, winning the penalty shootout and advancing Hagerty to its first ever regional win. The team defeated Olympia in the district quarterfinals and advanced to the regional semifinals, where they lost a close game to Lake Mary, 3-1, on Saturday, Feb. 9. Against Olympia, the team came out aggressively by controlling possession of the ball and constantly attacking. Neither team found the back of the net, and both goalies stopped some shots, keeping it 0-0 leading into halftime. In the second half, Olympia scored the first goal of the game from the left side of the box. Though Hagerty had a lot of chances in the second half, it was not until late in the game that Zinck converted the game-tying goal off a penalty kick after he was fouled in the box. Both goals were scored on penalty kicks within three minutes of each other. In overtime, the boys team won the game after making all five of their penalty kicks. Goalkeeper Abdul Muqeet saved the first attempt from Olympia’s Beto Yorach to set up the victory. Olympia was ranked as the top team in Central Florida by the Orlando Sentinel. Olympia beat Hagerty at Hagerty, 3-2, last season, and the boys team went on the road to return the favor this season. “This year’s group is all about success as a team. We have seven players who have recorded over 15 points so it is hard for other teams to stop us,” said head coach Micheal McAvoy.

The team’s early success came from winning key home games, including close victories against Seminole and Lake Mary. The boys team gave up very few goals at home and recorded several shutouts including Oviedo and Seminole. On Jan. 11, the boys soccer team concluded the final home game of the season with a dominant 5-0 win over Oviedo. They ended the regular season with a 13-1-2 record and 11-1-2 in the conference. The team was undefeated at home with an 8-0-0 record. Although the team had great success, Lake Mary proved to be the hurdle they could not overcome in the postseason. Lake Mary beat them 6-1 in the district final and then 3-1 in a much closer regional semifinal. Despite the loss, the boys team finished out the season strong by defeating Lyman and according to Max Preps finished the season ranked fourth in the state of Florida (5A class) and ranked 43rd in the nation. The leading scorers for the team included forward Parker Wick, midfielder Connor O’Malley and forward Collin Miller. “Our team has played extremely well throughout our season. We have all worked very hard for where we are,” Miller said. A big part of the team’s success was the back line. The group did not allow many fast break points, and always tried to control possession of the ball. The team only gave up 11 goals in 15 matches, including a shutout in their last home game against Lyman. Defensive players goalkeeper Abdul Muqeet, defender David Dickerson, defender Stuart Boyd, defender David Boyd, and midfielder O’Malley have stood out on defense. “We have had an amazing season on both sides of the ball, improving our wins to 13,” Wick said.