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Vol. 7, Issue 3

739 Academy Lane, Newport News, VA 23602

March 2010





Girls support coach’s daughter Page 2

Engagement charted at HRA Page 3

‘Shore’ catches viewers’ eyes Page 7

iPhone vs. Droid Page 8

HRA Noodle Night a smashing success By Helen Sporkin Every year, Noodle Night is scheduled on the night of a Varsity Basketball game to raise money for prom. And whether you’re there to serve or eat lasagna, or to watch the game, you’re part of a custom at Hampton Roads Academy. Noodle Night has been a tradition at the academy for 34 years now, and though some aspects of it have changed, such as sophomores being in charge of set-up instead of juniors, as well as serving lasagna rather than the original spaghetti, the overall theme of the event has stayed the same. A phoneathon was used to help initiate reservations. Before the phoneathon, Mrs. Deeley gave an announcement to the sophomores, saying that she could count the number of reservations on one hand, but afterwards, the number spiked at 293. This was the sophomores’ first opportunity to volunteer,

Photo courtesy of HRA yearbook staff Seniors Whitney Shephard and Carmen Lucas enjoy their pasta at HRA’s Noodle Night.

but other options were available on the day of the event. Accommodations were made for basketball players and other people who couldn’t attend the later shifts. Serving food, selling raffle tickets, and helping parents were the most common jobs during Noodle Night. The

last shift helped with clean-up. If you’ve never helped out with Noodle Night, just know it’s a lot of work. As Mrs. Deeley said, “We have to become full restaurant for one night.” The overall dedication of the sophomore class was pretty spectacular as they worked

together for the common goal of their prom. Although Noodle Night was a beautiful thing while it lasted, the sophomores returned the next week for attendance. The odds were against the class with many families going out of town for the three-day weekend, yet they still somehow served 378 people. While this number was down from last year’s results, they still were able to clear the deposit for prom. As Mrs. Donavant said, “We had so many things that weren’t in our favour, and we did well with what we had.” Noodle Night was a fun experience for the sophomore class, and will hopefully continue to be a tradition at HRA for years to come.

HRA community steps up with Haiti help By Joseph Montgomery The tragedy in Haiti has been widely publicized. The tremendous earthquake and aftershocks caused massive damage and almost 500,000 deaths. Those who survived face many future health concerns, as well as the painful task of finding family members amongst the rubble. Haiti needs help and Hampton Roads Academy has pitched in to help. Many students, especially the Student Council Association, set up change buckets to collect money for the Haiti disaster, as well as asking advisories to donate to the cause. Senior and SCA President

efforts of the SCA and generous students. While we may be unable to have a celebrity telethon and make millions of dollars, we can certainly help in our own way.

Photo courtesy of the American Red Cross The HRA community stepped up to help earthquake victims in Haiti.

Nicole Patterson said, “It’s important for us as a school to raise awareness about this, even if we don’t make a ton of mon-

ey. It’s about us realizing how fortunate we are.” HRA raised more than $2,000 for Haiti in the past weeks, through the

“It’s important for us as a school to raise awareness about this, even if we don’t make a ton of money.” -SCA President

Nicole Patterson

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March 2010

Basketball team supports coach’s daughter By Morgan Blalock Amaya Rose Sims, the young daughter of faculty member Mr. Sims, has received an outpouring of support and faith from the Hampton Roads Academy community. Doctors diagnosed Amaya with a cancerous brain tumor in January 2006. The placement of the tumor made surgery impossible and she has been going through chemotherapy since she was 3. HRA has held numerous fundraisers and events for Amaya and her family, including a bake sale, a book sale sponsored by the Builders Club, money raised through the lower school for a TNT Century Cycle and meals arranged for the Simses during treatment. The school sold “reminder bands” that raised not only money, but also hope and support for the brave young girl.

Lately the school’s basketball teams have contributed significantly. Beginning with the “Wishes and Swishes” event Jan. 2, and more recently with the “Pink Event” hosted by Nansemond-Suffolk Acad-

By Samson Canavos When one looks at what goes on within the senior class, everyone would agree that there is a lot of stress and tension. With applying to college and keeping up with studies, it seems the only things students do are school-related. However, some in the senior class have alternate means of relieving stress. There is a musical presence that many do not know about: Hampton Roads Academy has students with musical talents. Jamie Phipps is a senior who is in a band with another senior, Kay Byun. Jamie sings while Kay plays the bass. Kay also plays cello and composes her own music. People don’t understand what it takes to compose music on one’s own without help from any other person. One needs a musical ear to know what would sound good and what doesn’t sound right. Being able to compose music is a true talent that I believe has gone unnoticed. Kay was brought to the stage earlier this year, performing one of her pieces. There were probably some people who didn’t really care but musicians need to be recognized for their talents. Winston Davis and Nick Livingstone are two seniors

who thrive in a different area of music: guitar. Although they both play the same instrument their styles range greatly. Nick plays acoustic guitar and plays it well. He uses a finger-picking style that has a soothing, soft sound. Many people get some guitar lessons and play little three-chord songs on guitar to woo the ladies, but Nick is a true artist in that he does it for himself and for the satisfaction of producing a sound that pleases his ears. Winston, on the other hand, has the same do-it-foryourself attitude but his style is from another side of the guitar universe. He plays a metal style electric guitar with hard riffs and shredding solos. This style guitar takes a lot of skill and technique that is hard to learn. There is a catch, though, that is sure will be appreciated: He taught himself how to play guitar. These metal techniques that allow a guitarist to have a heavy guitar sound along with fast solos and melodic riffs are hard and take a lot of time and discipline to master. It is the mark of a true musician when he or she can learn how to play an instrument and then also master a certain style without ever taking a lesson. These are just some of the

Photo courtesy of Elli Goyette Members of the HRA girls basketball team posed in in pink shirts to show support for Amaya Sims

emy on Jan. 21, the teams have had a great impact on the fundraising and projecting awareness. Girls varsity basketball coach Mrs. Stoner said that she enjoys activities such as these

because they give support to the Sims family and show that people - and students - are pulling for Amaya and her parents. The money from the Pink Event was split between the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Association and CureSearch in honor of Amaya. Mr. Sims thanked all the students and staff who have helped in this difficult time and all those who have been supportive in the process. He said that it means a lot to have help from people who have neither had him as a teacher nor met his daughter. If readers would like more information about Amaya Sims or her family’s journey, they can visit her CaringBridge website: http://www.caringbridge. org/visit/amayarose. Please continue to take part in our school’s effort to support the Sims family.

Senior class impresses with hidden talents musical talents in the senior class. You can see the range of instruments and styles that are played and can now appreciate their talent. I wouldn’t want to limit this appreciation just to the senior class. There are many other musicians in the HRA upper school who have gone unnoticed. Hopefully one day all of HRA’s musical talents will be exposed for our enjoyment and


Photo courtesy of

The Compass Staff Editors: Vanessa Arvidson News Editors: Morgan Blalock, Allison Mui Sports Editors: Daven Patel, Erik Spatz Features Editors: Winston Davis, Kevin King, Joel Kauder, Joseph Montgomery Opinion Editor: Charlie Spencer Reporters robyn becker, Helen Sporkin Samson Canavos Contributors: Chloe Rento Advisor: Mr. Lidington

Vol. 7, Issue 3


3 March 2010

Engagement at HRA: Who is really involved? By Vanessa Arvidson Hampton Roads Academy is known for its service to the community. As a school, it has raised money for hurricanes, disaster relief, numerous charities and other local and national causes. However, how aware are HRA students to what is going on beyond its doors? A survey of upper school students was conducted to get a feel of just how politically and culturally aware HRA students are. A survey was sent out via email to all upper school students. The first 55 surveys received were analyzed. The survey asked the recipient how he or she would rate his or her personal level of awareness and main news sources such as the Internet, television, newspaper, etc. The survey asked if the recipients had ever taken a government course, signed a petition, watched the State of the Union Address or been a member of an activism-oriented club such as Operation Smile, Amnesty International, or others. These questions allowed for a sense of how active students are on a day-to-day basis. The participants’ knowledge was then put to the test through four questions, two politically oriented and two focused on pop culture, in order to gauge the cultural awareness of the student body. The participants were asked who the U.S. Speaker of the House was. More difficult, the participants were asked what university was the scene of the death of Annie Le, a widely reported story in September. The popular culture questions asked who won the Super Bowl and what MTV show features the ever-popular “Snooki.” And the results? The most popular news source was television (67 percent) followed by the Internet (36 percent). Seniors are required to take a government course and only four non-seniors reported taking a course in government. Over 70 percent reported having signed a petition, showing a high level of first-hand involvement in activism. Just under 50 percent of respondents reported being part of a service-oriented club. Of those, 56 percent were part of Operation Smile, the most popular club at HRA. The second-most-popular service-oriented club reported was Amnesty International with 19 percent. Other clubs included Environmental Club, Gay-Straight Alliance, Model U.N., Republican Club, Students Against Destructive Decisions and the Sierra Club. Seniors were required to watch the State of the Union as part of their government courses. With seniors included, 53 percent of respondents watched the State of the Union. However, if seniors are taken out of the pool, that number drops to only 11 percent.

When put to the test, 76 percent of respondents correctly named Nancy Pelosi as the U.S Speaker of the House. Thirty-six percent knew that Yale was the scene of the death of Annie Le. Ninety-eight percent knew that the New Orleans Saints won the Super Bowl this year and 75 percent recognized “Jersey Shore” as home to “Snooki.” So what do all these numbers add up to? HRA upper schoolers on average have a resonably high level of political awareness and diversity in how they are active. From iPhone apps and the internet to magazines and newspapers, HRA students try to stay informed as to what is going on outside the classroom. Numerous clubs at HRA atracts students across the grades and encourage public awareness and action. Furthermore, even without clubs or classes pushing students to be aware, HRA students take it upon themselves to be educated as to what is going on in the news whether that is government officials, breaking news stories, sports and entertainment headlines or popular television gossip.

Charts Courtesy of Vanessa Arvidson

America’s wake-up call?

Photo courtesy of

By Winston Davis On Jan. 19, Massachusetts had a great upset in the election for U.S. senator. Massachusetts elected a Republican senator for the first time; it has always been a traditionally Democratic, “blue” state. Having another Republican senator could swing many controversial bills being moved through the senate, including healthcare. Sen. Brown’s election is a large sign to the Democrats, who are realizing that the American people are not approving of what they have done and what they are doing to the economy. Senior David Otey states, “The election of Scott Brown can help the Republicans gain power

back into our American government by stopping health care.” All around America, a wake-up call has been heard by liberals and conservatives. Even Virginia, where Democrats have held the governor’s office for many years, elected a Republican governor, Bob McDonnell of Virginia Beach. This election not only scares the Democrats but may inspire change in the way they are running the government. Eventually our country will be back on track and the national debt will be paid.


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Girls hoops team set sights high Note: The HRA girls basketball team won the TCIS title, but was defeated March 6 by Norfolk Christian, 67-44, for the Virginia Independent Schools’ state championship.

By Chloe Rento Losing in the finals of the state tournament is tough for any team to have to go through. But not many teams have the chance to return to the finals the next year. The ‘09-’10 Lady Navigators varsity basketball team was undefeated far into its season, and, throughout, it seemed its chances of making an appearance in the final of the state tournament were very high. Last year, the team had a record of 20-8 and made it to the state finals, only to lose to rival Norfolk Christian. HRA won its first 11 games and was ranked number one in the state in their division. Other members of this team included co-captain seniors Tori Cooke, Rachel Edwards and Caroline Suttle and senior Megan Rinderer; juniors Jordan

The HRA girls varsity basketball team sets up for the next play.

Photo courtesy of HRA

Connell, Jolie Kipper, Emalee Sarrett, Jaielle Scott and Caitlyn Unsworth; sophomore Chloe Rento; freshman and co-captain Adrienne Motley; and eighth-grader Braysia Hicks. They are coached by Coach Laura Stoner, assisted by Coach Richardson, Coach Smeland and Coach Scott. Players know the drill. Focus and hard work in practice always produces a good result. Being in better shape than the other team is a huge advantage for this team that likes to push the ball up the court quickly in offense and press full court in

defense. “Running the floor provides opportunities for easy baskets,” said Coach Stoner. New teammates Rinderer, Unsworth and Hicks have all been a part of this success in their own ways. “Caitlyn has given us an outside shooting threat that takes the double-teaming off Adrienne. Braysia brings a strong physical presence in the post with the ability to finish. Megan brings maturity and is an excellent model for a strong work ethic,” Coach Stoner said. But not everything happens

and Garrick Sherman. Nix is a 275 pound, 6-foot-9 rebounding beast who should be able to contribute a big body right away for the Spartans. 2010 will be another fantastic season for the Spartans, and should result in another Final Four appearance. The Kentucky Wildcats have become one of the teams to watch out for in 2010, with the hiring of John Calipari. Even though star Jodie Meeks kept his name in the NBA Draft, the Wildcats are still a competitive Final Four team. After landing top 2009 recruit John Wall, recruiting DeMarcus Cousins and having Patrick Patterson withdraw his name from the NBA Draft, the Wildcats have everyone in Kentucky excited. The Wildcats have the pieces in place for a run towards the 2010 Final Four. Although they are shadowed in their conference by Villanova the Syracuse Orangemen are making some noise. Being off to an historic start this season, Syracuse has established itself as one of the top teams in the

nation. With a big forward who can handle the ball, Wesley Johnson is showing the nation that he is indeed a top player. He averages career highs in nearly every statistical category and leads this team. Along with a strong group of seniors, expect this team to make a run in the big dance. The ACC has always produced top competitors in college basketball and this year Duke has made its mark. Led by Jon Scheyer with an average of 18.7 points per game, 5.5 assists per game, a 3.3 assist-to-turnover ratio and 90 percent free throw average, Duke has a top spot in rankings this year. Duke has a long list of contributions from their team this year. Nolan Smith averages 18.2 points per game with a three point percentage of 46 percent, while Kyle Singler averages 16.1 points per game. They also receive contributions from the Plumlee brothers, Miles and Mason, senior Lance Thomas and freshman Andre Dawkins. This long list of contributors allows Duke to

March 2010

only on the court with this team. From having team meetings in the locker room to going out to lunch on certain days, the girls are all very close to one another and depend on each other for support and guidance “Since we only lost one senior last year, we (had) a lot of chemistry from last year,” Suttle said. “Our relationship off the court transfers on the court,” Unsworth added. The Tidewater Conference of Independent Schools season, then the conference tournament and the Virginia Independent Schools Tournament each pose their “(The toughest part of the season was) the third part of the season because we’re going to have a bulls-eye on our back because we made it to the finals last year,” said Motley, the team’s leading scorer. The inseparable bonds among the girls on the team are a key part to their success. There must be something about running sprints until you pass out to bring a group together.

Hoops picks enliven NCAA tourney

By Erik Spatz and Daven Patel As the most-anticipated dance of the year approaches, prognosticators for the NCAA men’s basketball tournament are coming out of the woodwork. This season has been very competitive, but there are a few standout teams who deserved recognition leading up the tournament. The 2009-2010 Michigan State Spartans are loaded with talent. The National Championship Game runner-up Spartans will return five of their top six scorers and have the best and deepest back court in the nation, including Big 10 Player of the Year Kalin Lucas, Durrell Summers, Chris Allen and Korie Lucious. This season will be a defining one for senior forward Raymar Morgan, on whom the Spartans will rely as a leader and who needs to increase his rebounding and inside scoring numbers to make up for the loss of Goran Suton. The Spartans added two freshman centers in Derrick Nix

be a top-ranked team and will aid them into the Elite Eight this March. Out of the Big East comes ranked Villanova. Led by Scottie Reynolds with 18.7 points per game, 80 percent from the free throw line and a three-point percentage of 41.7 percent, Villanova rocketed into the topranked teams in the country. Besides the large contribution from Scottie Reynolds, other players such as Antonio Pena and Corey Fisher make their own impact. Antonio Pena averages 10.9 points per game and 7.6 rebounds per game, while Corey Fisher averages 13.3 points per game and has a 2.2 to 1 assist to turnover ratio. Storming in from the Big 12 is the powerhouse Kansas Jayhawks. The Jayhawks are a talented group with four players scoring over 11 points per game. Cole Aldrich is a force to be reckoned with in the paint, where he averages a doubledouble with 11.6 points per See HOOPS on p. 7

Vol. 7, Issue 3


5 March 2010

Peninsula Town Center opens By Helen Sporkin To many of us, Peninsula Town Center is just that shopping-center-like place in Hampton with the Five Guys and Target. But as of March 11, all that changed. Eleven stores currently occupy the 1.1-million-square-foot plot of land. But after the grand opening, it will be home to 51 stores and restaurants, and this number is expected to grow over time. Hampton Mayor Molly Ward is proud of this addition to the city and expects its opening to generate job openings for all age groups. Many of the stores opening are new to the peninsula or Hampton Roads. Stores like H&M, Hollister and Delia’s opening will help Hamptonians avoid the long drive to Short Pump or MacArthur. The design of the center will be more like New Town in Williamsburg and City Center in Newport News than a mall, in that it’s an outdoor shopping center with apartments. Peninsula Town Center opened a movie theatre on March 11, but unlike the movie theaters at New Town and MacArthur, this will be a Cinébistro. Mayor Ward was particularly excited for this theatre’s arrival, because it is unusual in that it will provide a fine dining experience while a movie is played. The rest of the stores range from well-known clothing retailers, to an eclectic variety of restaurants. Here’s a full list of stores:

Restaurants and fast food: Abuelo’s Mexican Food Embassy, Vincent’s Italian Ice, Thaijindesu, BD’s Mongolian Grill, Outback Steakhouse, Q Barbeque, Chipotle, Five Guys, Kenji Fusion, Huey’s Diner, Bensi Ristorante Italiano, The Pub, JoJack’s Espresso Café. Health and Beauty: Anthony Vince Nail Spa, Aveda AnimareSalon, Vitamin World, Bath & Body Works, Bö Essential. Apparel: Bakers, Shoe Woo, Aéropostale, Caché, Charming Charlie, Chico’s, Express, Forever 21, G. Bates, Ltd., Gymboree, H&M, Hollister, JCPenny’s, Journey’s, Justice, Lane Bryant, Macy’s, Mekos Surf Skate and More, New York & Company, Target, The Limited, Victoria’s Secret, Claire’s, Delia’s. Other Retailers: Barnes & Photo Courtesy of Peninsula Town Center Noble, Build-A-Bear Workshop, Cinébistro, Emerson’s Cigars, Finish Line, GameStop, Kay Jewelers, LensCrafters, Mattress Discounters, Sport Clips, Sports Fan, The Wine Loft.

‘Treasure Island’ Staff Report    Collaboration at its best, the Hampton Roads Academy Middle School show this year “Treasure Island” brought together students from all three grade divisions of HRA as well as faculty and parents. Based on Robert Louis Stevenson’s book, “Treasure Island” takes place in a small English town by the sea. A drunken pirate, Billy Bones, played by eighth-grader Eric Massengill, walks into a tavern and shares stories of his adventures on the sea. After the party dies down, Black Dog, played by seventhgrader Caleb Rinderer, jumps out and kills Bones, looking for a map to Flint’s Treasure. Scared away before he could retrieve the map, Black Dog flees right before the townsmen enter to find Bones dead.      Discovering the map, town magistrate Dr. Livesey, played by eighth-grader David Watlington, decides to get the men together, and go in out in search of the treasure. They are joined by a crew of “sailors” who truly pirates under the evil authority of one-legged Long John Silver, played by eighth-grader Jacob Stein. Full of lively choreography and high-energy sword-fighting, the story unravels pitting the sailors against the pirates. Thanks to the help of Benn Gunn, a sailor aboard Flint’s ship who was marooned on the island, the sailors prevail and take the treasure for them sails, sailing back home to their waiting ladies.     Directed by middle school English Teacher Mrs. Fassio, “Treasure Island” featured upper school students on the production end, and performers from both the lower and middle schools. Senior Vanessa Arvidson served as assistant director,

focusing on blocking the scene and assisting with choreography and working with the leads on interpretation. Senior Paige Wineinger choreographed the musical, spending hours coming up with lively dance numbers that took the show to the next level. Sophomores Megan Burnett and Catherine Goodson served as stage manager and assistsnt stage manager respectively. Other upper-schoolers helped out on the tech end, for scene changes and assisting the middle schoolers in tech design and execution.     The cast featured students from the middle school as well as nine fifth-graders. While a middle school production, “Treasure Island” was a collaborative effort among all three divisions of HRA.     “Opportunities for cross-divisional experiences like this are part of what makes HRA special,” Ms. Fassio said. “It’s been really fun to watch upper school students share their theater expertise with and mentor the Middle School kids. I've been impressed by the energy and discipline that they showed throughout the process.”     With only a three-week period of time to put it together, the show was truly amazing. The show opened for a performance to local public schools on Jan. 28. About 300 kids came from four local private elementary schools. The show opened to the general public on Jan. 29. The following week a show was given for the HRA lower school, seventh and eighth grades, and three more local private schools, an audience of 370 kids. That Friday’s performance was another success. Unfortunately, due to the snow, the Saturday performances for both weeks of the run were cancelled. However, overall the show was still a huge success.

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March 2010

Amp up the Vamp By Helen Sporkin Vampire Weekend’s sophomore album “Contra” was released on Jan. 12 and sold 124,000 copies within the first week. These sales resulted in the album’s place atop the Billboard Top 200. While “Contra” did substantially better in the polls than their first album “Vampire Weekend,” some returning fans of the band are disappointed. Sophomore Marshall Padilla became a Vampire Weekend fan after the release of their first album and had this to say about Contra: “I’ve heard this all before. It’s not really anything new, I don’t feel any originality.” Even though there’s criticism, this album contains tracks that match the level of artistry of their last album. The New York band will always be identified by the distinct style of their self-titled debut album: African- and Latin-inspired rhythm, combined with a grandiose vocabulary. The band stayed true to this, while adding sound ranging from upbeat synth-pop, sweeping orchestral ballads and rapid calypso with warm vocals. The “Contra” hype began after the release of the album’s first single, “Horchata,” which was free of charge on their web site. The song is named after horchata, which is a Latin drink made from grains and nuts. Another song, “Taxi Cab,” is graced with soft vocals and a multi-instrumental backing to create a beautiful track. “Giving Up the Gun” is one of the album’s most approachable songs, having a simple, danceable tune with relatively straightforward lyrics. “Diplomat’s Son” is probably the album’s most musically daring song, in that it utilized a sample from M.I.A’s, “Hussel,” and its lyrics compose an allegory for the Nicaraguan civil war. The album’s name is in fact an allusion to the guerrilla force in the Nicaraguan civil war. The album’s last track, “I Think Ur a Contra,” is a dizzying, shifting, and complex ballad sung entirely in a falsetto voice. Contra showed the evolution of Vampire Weekend’s musical ambitions, while staying true to their original style.

Group honors HRA art students By Robyn Becker The National Art Honor Society (NAHS) has had a very exciting and successful year. The club began the year with the Empty Bowls project to fight hunger in the community raising more than $600 for the cause. On Nov. 20 new members were inducted into NAHS. With the help of these new members, NAHS ran a very successful tie-dye event and the club is very excited for their upcoming events including the juried show, a jewelry sale, and much more. The NAHS juried art show was held the first week in March and Mrs. Contakes was sponsor of NAHS and organizer of the juried show. The art show is always a great opportunity for Hampton Roads Academy students to showcase their artwork and for the entire community to enjoy great art. Five students have been working on the ongoing Memory Portrait Project. These students each received a photograph of a child in an orphanage in a developing Latin American country. The challenge is to create a portrait of this child that will later be sent to the child. It will most likely be the only childhood memory captured in a picture that these children will ever have. One of the student artists, senior Kate Donaldson, said, “The Memory Portrait Project is challenging as an artist because you have to try to capture the persona of the subject on a 2-D page. Despite the difficulty, the project is for a great cause and is a pleasure to be a part of.” Another NAHS project is helping people in a different part of the world. The Bead for Life jewelry sale, which raises money

Photo courtesy of Vampire Weekend’s sophomore album “Contra” was released on Jan. 12

Lunch time! By Robyn Becker Most seniors would probably agree that the privilege of being able to go out to lunch during the school day is a highlight of senior year. Younger students eagerly await the day when they can drive to Starbuck’s during lunch to get a coffee or pick up a sub from Subway. Seniors definitely appreciate this privilege because it gives them a much-needed break during the school day, and they have the opportunity to get a lunch that is probably better than a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. With a large selection of fast food and restaurants very close to Hampton Roads Academy, seniors can choose from a variety of places. The results from a poll of 34 seniors showed that the favorite lunch spot is Chick-Fil-A, second was Taco Bell and third was Subway. Some of the other favorite places were restaurants in the food court at the mall, such as Sakura, Chipotle and Charley’s. There is also a Chick-Fil-A in the food court, but most people go to the Oyster Point location, which is only a short drive from HRA. Courtney Crowder, part of the 32 percent who chose Chick-FilA in the poll, thinks that it is very fast and the food is good. She said, “I never get back to school late because they’re so fast and efficient.” Some people like to go to Starbuck’s to pick up a coffee, while others, like Kelsey Times, like a healthier choice. “The Fresh Market is a great place because it’s fast and there is a variety of food to choose from. You can get sushi, wraps and salads,” she said. Basically, seniors like anything that is quick and tasty. As more restaurants are opening, seniors will have even more choices lunch. As long as they are fast and good, seniors are sure to visit them frequently. for Ugandan women, will take place in April. Kelsey Times, historian of NAHS, said, “We were very surprised by the success of last year’s sale, and by the participation of the entire school. We raised $2,000 for the organization. We hope to raise even more money this year!” The club encourages everyone to buy the gorgeous jewelry to help the women of Uganda.

Vol. 7, Issue 3


7 March 2010

‘Jersey Shore’ draws viewers fo’ sho’ By Joseph Montgomery MTV’s latest hit, “Jersey Shore,” has become a hot topic among Americans and foreigners alike. The show just wrapped up recently with its final episode and reunion special. Many people love to watch these “guidos” and “guidettes” perform their ritual, known as “GTL,” for “Gym, Tan, Laundry” during the day, and then “battle” and fist-pump at nightclubs including “Karma” and “Bamboo.” However, this show has attracted lots of criticism from many Italian Americans. One of our school’s own Italian Americans Vinny Buffa commented on the show, saying, “I

think people overanalyzed the people on the show. I didn’t find it offensive at all.” Love them or hate them, iconic figures like Mike “The Situation,” JWoWW, and Snooki all make us yearn for more of “The Shore.” They leave us with burning questions like: Will Sammi Sweetheart and Ronnie ever get back together? Did Snooki ever find herself a boyfriend on the show? Was Snooki punched in the face after the show’s taping? Thankfully, Snooki appeared at Peabody’s on Valentine’s Day to the delight of her loyal area fans.

The cast of “Jersey Shore”

Photo Courtesy of MTV.Com

NCAA tournament New dawn of ‘Man’ is hoops heaven HOOPS, cont’d from p. 4 game and 10.3 rebounds. He is assisted on the perimeter by Sherron Collins, who averages 15.5 points per game with an 86 percent free throw average and a 38.9 percent three-point average. Collins also maintains a 2-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio. The other two players propelling the Jayhawks toward a national title and averaging over 11 points a game are Xavier Henry and Marcus Morris. These four individuals are propelling the Jayhawks towards an Elite Eight spot in March, if not a national championship. Ohio State has been a surprise to many this year as they entered the Top 25 and took down tough opponents no one thought they could. Ohio State will be an underdog this March, but they also have a great potential to be one of the Cinderella stories. Led by Evan Turner, who averages 18.5 points per game and 9.9 rebounds per game, along with an additional 5.5 assists per game, Ohio State puts on a show with every team they encounter. Two other players on the Buckeyes are Jon Diebler with 14 points per game, an 86 percent free throw average and a 44 percent three point average, and David Lighty with 13 points per game and 4.7 rebounds per game. This squad

is young but has a lot of potential and will surprise the nation when they enter the Elite Eight. There are some strong opinions on the outcome for this year’s NCAA men’s basketball tournament. When asked the question, “Who do you think will win the NCAA men’s basketball tournament and why?” members of our esteemed faculty responded. “It is really tempting to pick Kansas, though as the #1 team most of this year, that’s not going out on much of a limb,” said Mrs. Gillespie, head of the upper school. “Sherron Collins, Xavier Henry and the rest of that team are really imposing and have proven how good they are. Kentucky is my favorite team, with a freshmen group (Wall, Cousins and Bledsoe) that is really fun to watch, but sometimes shows its immaturity. “I really think the final winner may come from the Big East, the best conference overall this year, just because those teams have had to play their best every night just to surviveso Villanova, Syracuse, West Virginia and Georgetown look good too. To pick a winner? Hard to do, so I’ll go with my heart and say Kentucky.”

“Man vs. Wild” host Bear Grylls

By Kevin King The new season of the television show “Man vs. Wild” on The Discovery Channel is becoming quite popular in the Hampton Roads Academy community. This show displays real-life survival techniques in a variety of climates. The host of the show Bear Grylls places himself in habitats such as the Arctic tundra, the Sahara Desert, the rain forest and even a desert island in order to educate his viewers about how to survive. Grylls and his highly trained cameraman do whatever it takes to survive. In the newest season, Grylls and his crew visit a variety of habitats, including Guatemala, China, Montana and Panama. His outstanding survival techniques include making make-

Photo Courtesy of

shift lodging, finding food and water and creating the best possible chance of rescue. The mass appeal of this show is due to the sense of adventure and cunning that Grylls displays. For example, in one episode he free climbs down and up a slippery 50-foot well in the middle of the desr using only two stirdy sticks in order to get water. In another episode, he makes a smoke bomb and smokes bats out of a cave. He then proceeded to make a makeshift net to capture the bats in as they fled. He shows how, in any condition there is always an opportunity to capture food. At HRA, many of the students looked forward to each new episode as they came out. Senior Winston Davis raves, “It is a thrilling adventure every time I watch it.”

Vol. 7, Issue 3


8 March 2010

Roamin’ in Rome By Charlie Spencer and Allison Mui A group of 35 travelers from Hampton Roads Academy traveled to Rome during Winter Break from March 6-12. The students saw see the Roman sites before the summer heat and the crowds arrive. One traveler, senior Elizabeth Evans, was especially excited. First of all, she had never been overseas. Also, her senior project is to learn Italian, so she was excited to use what she has learned so far this year. She said, “I am also making a scrapbook for my project. I hope to incorporate pictures I will take in Rome.” The group of travelers consisted of 20 students, 10 adults, and five teachers: Dr. Rubinstein, Ms. Block, Nurse Bailey, Mrs. Fenker and Mr. Gandolfo. Dr. Rubinstein, who teaches Latin and who organized the trip and led the group, said that the group saw typical tourist sites in Italy. In fact, she brought a lot of local knowledge to the trip: She attended the American Academy of Rome and lived in the city for about two years. She also spent many summers in Rome and loves all of the history there. Dr. Rubinstein said, “Every street is a layer of history.” She loves that each building in the city can tell a story dating back to thousands of years ago. Her favorite site in Rome is Janiculum Hill, where there is a great view of the city. According to Dr. Rubinstein, some of the various sites to which the group traveled are the Rome Forum, the Vatican, the Catacombs and Ancient Ostia, an archaeological port of Rome. Members of the group took a side trip to Florence. The travelers visited the Colosseum, where they went shopping. The group also attended a pizza-making class and a group dinner.

Photo courtesy of Flickr.Com The Roman Colliseum, one of the most iconic structures in Rome.

One senior on the Rome trip, Ani Marty, said, “What I’m most looking forward to are the Catacombs, which are like a giant maze of tombs.” Marty explained that the Catacombs were the burial sites of Christians in ancient Rome. As a Latin student of six years and a history fan, she has learned the history of the sites to which the group will be traveling. In fact, most of the students traveling to Rome have taken or are taking Latin. They will be able to see the historical sites they have learned about in class. Initially, Dr. Rubinstein offered the idea of the Rome trip expecting a low response. Surprisingly, many students expressed an interest in going. Some of these students, like Marty, sophomore Helen Sporkin and junior Lynn Nakamura, traveled to Greece and Turkey with an HRA group last summer. The next trip set on the HRA itinerary is the one to France and the Mediterranean in 2011.

iPhone vs. Droid: Battle for Supremacy

Apple Corp.’s iPhone

Photos Courtesy of Flickr.Com A phone using the Google Android operating system

By Kevin King The Apple iPhone and the Google Android phones are some of the most premiere phones in the cellular industry. These smart phones include many outstanding features such as internet, connection to social networking and many creative apps, programs used on phones to do a variety of tasks. Currently, Google Android is the next contender to the outstanding Apple iPhone. These phones are functionally similar; however, they vary in form factor. For example, the iPhone 3GS is the only shape and kind of iPhone currently available. It also is a multi-touch-only phone, which is detested by many people who would rather type on a QWERTY keyboard rather than the sometimes inaccurate touch screen. On the other hand, the Google Android operating system comes in several models, and includes many of the touch features of the iPhone, but includes a full slide-out QWERTY keyboard. The most outstanding difference between the iPhone and Google Android phones is the selection of applications. The Apple app store contains many more creative apps than the android app store. Also, the apple store is easier to use with the use of iTunes. Another major advantage of the iPhone is the built-in iPod mp3 player. Many people prefer this of the lackluster Android music player. However, the Android player still gets the job done with its mp3 widget and its automatic artist research included in the apps. All in all, the iPhone and the Android phones are relatively similar. They include many of the same features and are roughly the same size, shape, and price.

The Compass Vol. 7 Issue 3  

The Compass is the student newspaper of Hampton Roads Academy in Newport News, VA.

The Compass Vol. 7 Issue 3  

The Compass is the student newspaper of Hampton Roads Academy in Newport News, VA.