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a cut above

The Best of the Best from the 2005-2006 Individual Category Newspaper Contest Michigan Interscholastic Press Association

The Cover Photo

H.H. Dow senior, Gabe Strickler, a varsity swimmer, had the honor last year to accept a position on the MSU Swim Team. Photo by Rachel Evans, H.H. Dow HS, First Place Winner, Portrait, Division 2.

Published by Michigan Interscholastic Press Association 305 Communication Arts Building Michigan State University East Lansing, MI 48824 Phone: (517) 353-6761 Fax: (517) 355-7710 E-mail: Web site:

January 2007 Dear Friends of Journalism:


his is the eleventh issue of Michigan Interscholastic Press Association’s A Cut Above, which contains the best of high school journalism in Michigan. The purpose of this booklet is twofold: 1) to showcase the first-place winners in the MIPA Individual Category Newspaper Contest and 2) to act as a guide for students and advisers preparing contest entries for the 2006-2007 competitions. In the following pages you will find stories and art by first-place winners among the five divisions 1, 2, 3, 4 and Middle School for newspaper. We have included category descriptions and judging criteria for each category. This is how we determine divisions: We look at the number of students from each school that enters the contest. We use the numbers from the Michigan High School Athletic Association Directory. We put schools in order from the largest down to the smallest. Division 1 contains the largest schools, and Division 4 contains the smallest. We try hard to put nearly the same number of schools in each division. We are proud of all the winners and wish we could have published all of them, but size and space dictated how many, and in some cases, which ones, were printed. Since all the winning entries were retyped to fit the format, we apologize if any errors were made in the stories. Please remember these are just a sampling of the stories. If you would like to help judge the 2006-2007 entries for the Individual Category Newspaper and Yearbook contests, please call the MIPA office at (517) 353-6761 or e-mail Judging will take place on Saturday, March 3, 2007, at the MSU School of Journalism. We need you! I’d like to thank Julie Price, the current newspaper chairperson, and Lynn Strause, the current yearbook chairperson, who both did a fantastic job of pulling off last year’s judging. This is a huge project, and we all owe them a round of applause! I’d also like to thank Penney Aiken and Amy Brandt for typing all of the stories and laying out the pages and for scanning images. These two MIPA employees work hard for all of us! Finally, I’d like to thank all the wonderful advisers, the MIPA executive board, The State News staff members, School of Journalism faculty and professionals for giving up a chunk of your Saturday to come to MSU to help judge. Without you, of course, there would be no winners! For complete information about all of the contests, please check out the MIPA Web site at All forms are available as PDF files, which you can download and print out. Sincerely, Cheryl M. Pell MIPA director 305 Communication Arts Building Michigan State University East Lansing, MI 48824 PHONE: (517) 353-6761 FAX: (517) 355-7710 E-MAIL:

News Story

Say Cheese! Do you know who is watching? Security cameras added for protection By Jennifer Oldani Clarenceville HS They’re watching you. They are recording your every step. They are here to protect and serve as a guide. What are they? Security cameras. This coming spring or summer, the administration will be installing sixteen new security cameras over various “hot spots” of the school. “It’s about time that we get them. It’ll help us secure our building, and we will know who’s coming in and out of the building when they aren’t supposed to,” said Ms. Wendy Kellehan, assistant principal. With new security cameras, the staff and administration are hoping to cut down on acts of vandalism and fighting within the school. “We hope to eliminate breaking into the cars in the parking lot, stolen hub caps, eliminate rumor mills, and just secure the building overall as a whole,” said Kellehan. Some students and staff don’t like the fact that they will be watched throughout the school day. “I don’t think that it’s right for them to have cameras in the hallways, because it invades our privacy. I mean, I understand them watching the parking lots, but I don’t think it’s necessary for them to be in the hallways,” said Kelly Quinn, junior. Also agreeing with Quinn is junior Brandon Page. “I think that it is wrong and where are they going to draw the line? Pretty soon they are going to have leashes around all of our necks.” “I think it’s a slippery slope. In situations like this,

they bring it in under security, but gradually it turns into a tool to infringe upon individual liberties,” said Mr. Anthony Salciccioli, social studies teacher. Agreeing with Salcicciolo, for the first time, is Mr. James McEachen. “It’s 1984; it’s Orwellian (George Orwell). The whole thing in Iraq is about freedom and liberty, and here we are losing some of our own freedom and liberty.” The sixteen cameras will be placed inside and outside of the school. There will be some focusing on the parking lot, doors to the school, and in the crowded halls. There will be some pan and some fixed cameras. “I think that anything that makes the building more secure and can monitor property is a good thing. Let’s face it, we can’t be everywhere at the same time to see everything. It’s not like they are going to be in the bathrooms or classrooms,” said Ms. Tricia Waeschle, science teacher. Not only do some teachers agree with the new security cameras, there are also students who like the coming addition to the school. “Every year, students come to Student Congress asking us to get security cameras for the parking lots and school. I think it’s a great idea, and it’ll prevent vandalism in the parking lot and throughout the school,” said Jon Ciaramitaro, executive board treasurer. Along with Student Congress, students think that it’ll help the school get rid of theft, vandalism and violence. “I like the fact that we are getting security cameras in the school, because it’ll cut down a lot of the violence and crap that happens, and people won’t get blamed for something they didn’t do,” said Lisa Brown, senior.

News Story

News stories report but not interpret events that have news value and timeliness to the publication’s readers. Either advance or follow-up stories may be included in this category.


• sharp, attention-getting lead that underscored news story importance • shows thorough reporting skills • effective use of facts/quotes from both primary and secondary sources • avoids opinion unless properly attributed • sentences, paragraphs of varied lengths; written clearly, concisely and vividly • proper diction/grammar; use of third person • uses inverted pyramid or other appropriate story construction

First place winners by division

1 Adrienne Turner Southfield 2 Molly Shannon Groves 3 Sean Callan Fenton 4 Jennifer Oldani Clarenceville

M Korinne Travis Traverse City East Jr.

A Cut Above 

News Analysis News Analysis

Stories should be interpretive by nature, not straight news stories. The elements of “why” and “how” should be examined through thorough research, but the writer’s opinions should not be expressed.

School Shutdowns Cause Seniors to Switch Transfer students start anew after recent school closings in Detroit By Jacki Fiscus Mercy HS


• sharp, attention-getting lead that underscores news story importance • clarifies the news elements, i.e. timeliness, nearness, impact, prominence • clarifies through research the background necessary to understand current news • develops an understanding of the issues/problems through interviews with varied and balanced sources. • avoids personal opinions unless properly attributed • sentences, paragraphs of varied lengths, written clearly, concisely and vividly • effective use of facts/ quotes from both primary and secondary sources • proper diction/grammar; use of third person

First place winners by division

1 Dan Faas & Eric Brinks Saline 2 Melissa Tucker & Dria Mazzeo Utica 3 Mo Stych Traverse City Central 4 Jacki Fiscus Mercy M Korinne Travis Traverse City East Jr.

 A Cut Above

Prom, senior pictures, senior all-night party, graduation. All the things seniors have dreamed about for years. But this year, eight seniors’ fairytale endings to the high school experiences vanished. While they may still partake in the events anticipated, the environment will be drastically different from what they envisioned. Instead of spending their senior year with those they have known for years, the seniors will experience it with a group of strangers. When news of school closings began leaking out last year, many students from Bishop Borgess and Dominican High School, among others, came to visit Mercy. The visits made the difference. New senior, Jerisha Frazier said, “Last year when I came to visit Mercy, I liked the school so much I decided to come.” For many students, the Mercy atmosphere won them over. “Everyone was very welcoming and Mercy just had a whole different atmosphere then the other schools I visited,” said Shanitra Shaw, a transfer student from Dominican. For Molly Goldberg, a new senior that previously attended a boarding school in Montana, the positive things Molly heard about Mercy helped her make her choice. “I heard many good things about Mercy; how empowering of an experience it is and how great Mercy’s education is,” she said. But leaving their old schools and everything they knew was not easy. “At Dominican we were one big family. I knew everyone and now I don’t know anyone,” said Shanitra.

With Dominican’s close many seniors lost their home away from home, “It was the most depressing three months of my life. I couldn’t believe that my school was closing and I couldn’t finish my last year to graduate with my class,” Shanitra said. “I watched five graduations, five moving up ceremonies, fie torch nights [where the graduating seniors give the torch to the juniors to symbolize their new leadership of the school] and just as it was my turn, I couldn’t be a senior anymore.” Despite the unexpected transfers, the seniors feel they are adjusting and hope to enjoy senior year regardless of the school. “So far everyone here has been welcoming; it isn’t hard to make friends,” Jerisha said. Because Molly went to boarding school, she did not have the dances and other high school activities that Mercy hosts. “I really just want to make friends and participate in all the cliché high school experiences just like on Laguna Beach,” she said. For Molly who has never been to a single-sex school, the all-girls idea is a new thing for her. So far, Molly has liked it and said, “It is weird being at an all-girls school, but honestly it’s easier being here because I’m not so distracted and I never have to care how I look.” Since Dominican students had the same math and science teacher since 9th grade, it is difficult to become accustomed to a new teacher’s style. In Montana, Molly only went to school from 8:00 to 12:30. The switch from four classes per day to seven is quite an adjustment. Despite obstacles, all the seniors have risen to the occasion and adjusted well.


Staff Editorial: Save the Block By Sean Callan Fenton HS Once again, block scheduling is under fire, and this time it is serious. Five years after the inception of block, the district is facing a million dollar projected deficit, and the school board is being forced to make some extremely difficult decisions. The community elected the school board members to look out for the best interests of its students, and now they must answer this charge. According to the Block Schedule Report issued three years after the institution of the block, the block was responsible for an increase in academic performance, the offering of more varied classes and a better way to support at-risk students. Based on this information, removing the block is not in the best interest of the students. All of the alternative scheduling scenarios being discussed would have a negative impact. A six hour day would mean elective programs would suffer. A modified block or any other situation where teachers would be forced to take on an even larger class load would mean less time for individualized attention. There are better ways to rectify the budget deficit. The block is expensive partially because the eight class schedule requires more teachers than the traditional six class schedule. If the block were eliminated, those teachers could be laid off and a large portion of the projected deficit would be

covered. However, if approximately 25 teachers voluntarily taught during their conference hours it would create enough “space” for the administration to lay off the teachers it needs to (while still keeping the block). Teachers would be compensated for this; their contract provides for additional pay to teach an additional class. This could be a real solution that just might save the block. For teachers, many of whom say they have difficulty affording cost of living on their current salaries, that just might be a bargain worth making. If it is economically impossible for the board to re-organize funds to save the block, then perhaps they need to join with other districts in the state and bring this to the attention of the State Board of Education. The state provides the funding to the school district, so if money is the goal, they are the ones who need to be persuaded. Students need the block. It creates a good atmosphere for learning and allows students the freedom to pursue subjects that interest them, along with receiving a solid college prep or career training background. It is the responsibility o the school board to do what is best for students. The block system resulted in an overwhelming 95.2 percent staff belief that the school atmosphere is more positive as well as a noticeable decline in aggressive behavior. If the block were to be taken away, there is a good chance that all that has been accomplished will disappear. It is the duty of the board to make sure that doesn’t happen.


Editorials should represent the opinion of the staff, editors or editorial board on a timely news matter of concern to the school, community, state, nation or world. They may express appreciation, offer interpretation or attempt to deal with problems. Editorials are not to be bylined, signed or initialed, or in any way identified as being the opinion of the writer(s).


• topic relevant to interest and/or welfare of school or students • wins reader interest with impelling lead • presents evidence/interpretation in logical sequence • states issues; uses effective examples, facts and comparisons to clarify • deals with specific issue; avoids preaching and rhetoric cliches • shows sufficient thought and research • sentences, paragraphs of varied length; written clearly, concisely and vividly • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division

1 Staff Troy

2 Staff Groves 3 Sean Callan Fenton 4 Staff Lakewood M Emily Mumford Traverse City East Jr.

A Cut Above 

Bylined Opinion Bylined Opinion

Articles of personal opinion, which carry the byline of the writer(s), may comment on any subject of interest (including sports) and/or concern of the readers, or may express dissent from the majority opinion expressed in editorials.


• topic relevant to interest and/or welfare of school or students • wins reader interest with impelling lead • presents evidence/interpretation in logical sequence • states issues; uses effective examples, facts and comparisons to clarify • deals with specific issues; avoids preaching, rhetoric and cliches • shows sufficient thought and knowledge of subject, developed with personal style • sentences, paragraphs of varied length; written clearly, concisely and vividly • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division 1 Taylor Hauck Grosse Pointe South 2 DaShawn Primm North Famington 3 Ray Erickson Haslett 4 David Hamstra Community M Emily Mumford Traverse City East Jr.

 A Cut Above

Life on the streets, homeless at 15 By Ray Erickson Haslett HS If you wake up every morning with a roof over your head, then you are more fortunate than 1.3 million kids in America. It is extremely hard for the census bureau to count the number of homeless children because most cases aren’t reported. Mine wasn’t. When my parents forced me to leave their house over two years ago, I didn’t know where to go. My 16year old brother Ben had his own apartment near campus at the time. His roommates thought he was 18 and went to Lansing Community College. To pay rent and food, he worked 40-50 hours a week. On some weekdays he would work 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. and then go to school at 7:50 a.m. I moved into Ben’s one-person room and stayed there for a little over a month. His landlord found out about me and kicked us both out. Ben found another place. I didn’t. For the next four months, I was homeless. I bounced around from friend’s house to friend’s house for a while, but felt I was intruding too much. You get a little sick of a friend who is always at your house. I started finding other places to stay. I snuck into retirement homes and fraternity houses with a backpack of my stuff, as much as it could hold. I slept at Sparrow Hospital downtown some nights on unused beds. It was a long four months. On March 5, 2004, I moved into Eric Miller’s house. He was a senior and I was a sophomore. We met through the swim team. When he found out I was homeless, he told his mom and she instantly took me in as if I were one of her own. We had fajitas for dinner the first night. I wore jeans and a green shirt. It was extremely awkward. Imagine your brother bringing home a bum to live in your house with you. It was strange meeting the aunts, uncles, grandpas, grandmas, cousins. I felt so out of place, like I didn’t belong. But over time, the whole family and I got to know each other, and it wasn’t so damn awkward. I lived happily with the Millers for five months. It was great not worrying where I was going to sleep every night or paying for food, rent and utilities. I was able to relax. Legal issues forced me to leave the Miller’s house. Mr. And Mrs. Miller could have lost their jobs if someone told the wrong person I was living with them.

For one month after that, I lived and worked with my 31-year old sister in Big Rapids. I came back to Haslett and was homeless for another three months. It was worse than before. Once you know what it’s like to live in a nice, warm, loving home, then lose it, you know what you’re missing. That makes it so much worse. In November of 2004, my older brother bought a house in Lansing. I was the first to move in. Having a home again was nice, but living in the ghetto of Lansing has its setbacks, too. People were always trying to break in. People I’ve never seen before would fight in my front yard and in the street. I had to ride the CATA everywhere. I’d wake up extra early to get to school. But the bus only took me to the mall, so I would walk from the mall to school. I was always late or missing school. Not because I was out with my friends causing trouble, but because I couldn’t get to school. I’ve waited many times for the bus that never came. That is extremely depressing. More than once I would get out of work at 10 p.m. on a Sunday night after a 12- hour shift, when the busses had already stopped running. I’d walk from the Okemos Beaners to my Lansing house by Sparrow on a rainy/snowy night. Then I’d go to school that next morning and listen to other kids talk about how they hate their mom because she took away their X-box. In a way, I felt bad for the other kids at school. They didn’t know how fortunate they were. During the first week of school this year, I went to see the Millers just to say hey and I ended up spending the night. The next day they asked me to move back in with them. I happily agreed. I plan on living with the Millers until I graduate. Being homeless has put me through so much crap. I wanted to scream at my parents for kickin’ me out. Scream at the bus drivers for not coming to pick me up. Scream at my teachers for not knowing how hard t was for me to do my homework when I had to think about how I was going to buy food. I wanted to scream at God for putting me through this. Yet I tell everyone I’m glad I went though it. I’m glad I was homeless for seven long months: 210 nights of not knowing where I was going to sleep. I’m glad I went through it because I won’t ever be that kid who’s saying how much I hate my mother because she took my X-box away. Take my X-box, Mom. I’m glad I have a home.


Book Review: House of Leaves By Kurt Juday & Sam Howard Marshall HS Keep the lights on. What you know to be reality perhaps does not hold true anymore. Mark Z. Danielewski’s, ten-years-in-the-making, 78-page masterpiece is not for the faint of heart. Everything you know to be true about the simple laws of physics and nature will be questioned. Childhood fears buried a long time ago will resurface. And it will be a struggle to put the book down. (But you’ll have to, reading a book of this size in one sitting would be a struggle in and of itself.) When Johnny Truant starts looking for an apartment, his friend Lude suggests one that is now available because of the death of Zampanó, an elderly and eccentric man. Lude and Johnny go looting through his stuff and find something very peculiar. There is a trunk full of papers, apparently written by the old man. This mess of papers is a review of a documentary. The storyline of the documentary is shattering and terrifying. But Zampanó was blind, and the documentary does not really exist. Johnny begins to sort through the papers, and read the old man’s words. His life is never the same again. The documentary is called The Navidson Record, and is the subject of Zampanó’s work. The documentary was intended to chronicle real family life, filmed by renowned photojournalist Will Navidson, as he and the mother of his children, Karen Green, and their children Chad and Daisy, move into a new house. One day, a closet appears in Will and Karen’s room. Confused, Will gets the floor plans from the realtor. He soon discovers that even after extensive measuring, the house is 1/4 of an inch bigger on the inside than on the outside. As the house becomes more mysterious, the perversions of physics, family life, and reality become nearly unbearable. This book exists on several different planes. You could simply take this book for what it is—simply finish it, put it down, and go on with your normal, happy life. Or you could go deeper. There are mysteries that this book con-

tains that never cease to unfold as the story continues. The book is filtered through five levels of reality, each one conflicting with one another. Zampanó, who wrote the text, Johnny who found Zampanó’s text and adds his own narrative, the editors of the book who correct mistakes and clarify, Johnny’s mother Pelafina who has a tremendous influence over Johnny and his life, and Mark Z. Danielewski, who in “reality” authored the entire work. This book is both a literary and visual masterpiece. It is chock-full of footnotes; possibly a third of the story is told through footnotes. Appendixes, collages, exhibits and even the index are important to interpreting the deeper aspects of the book. Visually, the book is a representation of what is actually going on in the text. As events become more stressful or fast paced, there are less words on each page, making one flip faster and faster to see what happens next. The text is upside down, spiraling, colored, sideways, reversed, crossed out, missing, and/or burnt, sometimes all on the same page. One could spend half an hour, (or more) on one page, just trying to absorb what is going on. The labyrinthine arrangement of words and patterns seems to mimic the events and locations in the book. As the story goes on and the house is described in detail, the reader is even made to question what they are holding in their hands. Is it a book, or is it the house? Part of the experience of reading the book is decoding, quite literally. There are some obvious codes, and some codes that are very well hidden. The book makes several references to Greek, Roman, and Norse mythology, and while most passages that were written in other languages are translated, others are not, leaving the reader to explore for the answers. This book isn’t just a read, it’s a challenge. It requires active involvement in the book, and in our cases, notebooks full of codes, research, and strange findings. If you do choose to read this, we encourage you to come talk to us about it. If you want a reality-challenging head-trip, House of Leaves is for you.


Review should present opinions, observations and evaluations of film, books, television, recordings, concerts, plays, restaurants and other things of interest to the paper’s readers.


• sharp, attention-getting lead that clarifies subject • gives short summary or adequate information about subject • discusses strengths and weaknesses of subject • uses specific examples to support opinion • displays knowledge of subject • shows thought and research • colorful, lively presentation; effective form/style • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division 1 Marc Kelley & Alan Lundgard Midland 2 Megan Wilt H.H. Dow 3 Scott Baumgartner Ferndale 4 Kurt Juday & Sam Howard Marshall M Erin Wiggens Traverse City East Jr.

A Cut Above 

Feature Column Feature Column

Each entry must consist of two examples of feature and/or opinion columns under the same standing head from different issues of the paper, authorized by the same writer(s). Columns must carry bylines or other writer identification to indicate the personal nature of the content.


• sharp, attention-getting leads • express personal opinions; uses consistent style • reflects thought/research, freshness, individuality • effective use of facts/ quotes or supporting material • informative, interesting, entertaining • upholds journalistic integrity • sentences, paragraphs of varied length; written clearly, concisely an vividly • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division 1 Dan Faas Saline

2 Anna Brown H.H. Dow 3 Frank Dufek Dexter 4 Laurel Noble Clarenceville M Evan Dezelski Traverse City East Jr.

10 A Cut Above

Breaking the age barrier one senior stud at a time By Anna Brown H.H. Dow High School Before you read this and worry for my sanity, let me say right up front that I do have a boyfriend who is my own age. However, generally speaking, I have this ‘thing’ for older men. Much older men. Older as in white hair if they’re lucky enough to still have hair at all, and old enough to be my grandpa old. I know you think I’m sick, but before you jump to conclusions, let me explain myself. When you look to the older, much older, crowd it’s easier to find a man more interested in your brain than your bra size. There are fie long-term loves in my life, and each one is 50+. They are the musician, athlete, intellect, humorist and southern gentleman. Each one is one of the most amazing men I’ve ever met, and I can honestly say that I love them all. I don’t think they know, so let’s call them ‘secret crushes.’ ‘Secret crush’ number one is the musician. An accomplished guitar player and instructor with a flourishing career, he’s at a great place in his life. Sadly for me, he’s also quite happily married. I’m happy for him. He deserves it, but I can’t help not be a little jealous. What girl doesn’t love being serenaded? ‘Secret crush’ number two would have to be the athlete. Don’t be fooled by the snowy white hair, he is a machine. Although small in stature, this soccer coach not only runs the butts of his players, but also can keep up with them while doing it. Who wouldn’t love a man that personally bandages your bleeding, blistered feet before telling you to suck it up and get back on the field? Only a saint would touch my post-game paws, trust me. Even my mother doesn’t love me that much.

That brings us to ‘secret crush’ number three, the intellect. I’m an English geek through and through and this man was the Buddha of the English department until retirement. His infinite words of wisdom and relaxed classroom atmosphere made American Lit. the class of my sophomore year. Not to mention the fact that he loved to talk about ‘Fiddy Cent’ and the only thing that he used his computer for was downloading videos of crazy dancing obese men. Okay, so that only happened once, but the reenactment that he did made it quite memorable. I’ve known ‘secret crush’ number for the longest of the bunch and hold him closest to my heart. The humorist is a close family friend. His dry wit and clever humor are much appreciated in my own family where nobody can tell a joke to save their life. He’s been so much a part of my life that I can’t imagine the day when he won’t be. Last, but certainly not least, is ‘secret crush’ number five, the southern gentleman. I met him at journalism camp this summer where he taught my class. I knew him by reputation, as he wrote the books we use in journalism, which is impressive in itself. However, what really won me over was the southern accent and mannerisms. Normally I wouldn’t appreciate being called ‘sweetie’ and ‘honey’ but with him, I have to say, I kind of like it. I was in Chicago last weekend for the national Journalism Conference, where I saw him again. It’s a little bit pathetic for me to admit this, but sitting in on one of his seminars and listening to that familiar drawl was one of the highlights of the weekend. So hat do all these men have in common except for approaching senior citizenship? They have mutual love and admiration, which isn’t always so easy to come by. Oh yeah, and they’re all happily married as well. So I guess it’s a good thing that I broke my own 50+ rule and finally found someone my own age.

Pro/Con Editorial Columns

How Casual is Too Casual By Derek Robertson & Izabela Babinki, Fenton HS Pro: Derek Robertson

Con: Izabela Babinski

Teachers seem to be increasingly watching their back for the administrative “fist of justice” (title not official, but I’m planning to propose it to Mrs. Hammond sometime soon) that has crashed down in the form of tickets from hall monitors for all sorts of things, from dress code violation to food being eaten in classroom. It’s no surprise, then that there would be a bit of an uproar over the suggestion and rumbling of a staff dress code that has been rumored lately. First of all, it’s a given that teachers should dress relatively professionally, like any employee of their caliber. If the staff slouched around the school in sweatpants and old college Tshirts, I think we can all agree that maybe the atmosphere would get a little too relaxed around here. This is the main issue at heart here as opposed to the students’ dress code, which is directed to prevent any inappropriate or revealing clothing. Obviously, neither the student body nor the staff ’s peers want to see that on a teacher. Almost everyone is questioning the validity and necessity of a code to make teachers appear more “professional”-neither I nor anyone I know can remember the last time we saw a teacher dressed like a hypothetical slacker mentioned above. This has led to the feeling amongst the staff that this is yet another item in a list of tools being developed by the administration to use against the staff. Now, I cannot imagine why an administration would want to demonize a staff of (mostly) dedicated professionals whose numbers are rapidly dwindling nationally, but the prevailing atmosphere as of late has been a big of a crackdown. It’s much easier to see the teachers’ point of view on this than the administration’s. Teacher dress is a simple issue of common sense. The rules are clear on the dress code, and it is meant to be dealt with on a case-to-case basis. Proponents of a dress code may say that a more strident list of rules is necessary to enforce one, but it’s quite obviously when someone is dressing unprofessionally and in poor taste, and something like this can be addressed individually. It simply doesn’t make sense to develop a rigid system o rules that could plausibly be used against a teacher who may be a little more slack than his or her peers, but is not inappropriate in any way. Admittedly, like stated before, it’s understandable for the administration to want to present their school as a professional environment. It’s working pretty well that way now. Some teachers may occasionally dress too casually, but this is dealt with on an efficient basis. Most of the time it’s not in any sort of unfair way—everyday life in the classroom puts a considerable amount of stress on the wardrobe and the staff understandably wants to avoid this. The staff can accuse the administration of prying into a business they don’t live day-to-day, but in the end the most they can do is show up to the proposed “committee” for the dress code and voice their opinions should a dress code continue to be pursued.

Grand Blanc Community Schools give their students detailed instruction about how to dress. Shouldn’t teachers also be given guidelines about personal apparel? Recently Dane Morris, GBEA president, asked teachers to join a committee to develop suggested guidelines for a professional dress code. It’s about time that someone noticed how inappropriately some teachers dress. According to the Grand Blanc Community Schools 2005-06 Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook, “dress and grooming in the Grand Blanc Community Schools will be based on common sense, good judgment, and good taste” for students’ teachers should also follow similar guidelines. At times it appears that some of the GB staff don’t use good judgment or good taste. Teachers should look professional daily. The Grand Blanc Community Schools 2005-06 Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook states that “clothing, accessories, or personal grooming habits which interfere with or disrupt educational process are not allowed.” Paying attention to an educator who is dressed like a professional adult and not in a goofy T-shirt and jeans would be much more appealing to students. The suggested dress code now prohibits shorts, sleeveless tops without a jacket over, mini skirts, and overalls. Too often these rules are violated and we are forced to put up with teachers in skirts so short they wouldn’t pass under the student dress code. Don’t get me started about the bizarre shorts. Unfortunately animal printed sweaters, plaid pants, tapered jeans, pants that think they’re sweat pants but really aren’t and orthopedic shoes didn’t make the “don’t” list for either regular dress days or casual Fridays. Hopefully the teachers who do wear these things will take the hint and stop. While all of the above scream creativity and individuality, none of them say “professional” to me. Some teachers do dress professionally, but it is apparent that not everyone has the same definition of “professional.” A dress code could bring everyone to an equal understanding of what is appropriate and what isn’t. It is understandable that teachers would dislike the idea of a dress code but the idea wouldn’t have been proposed if there wasn’t a problem in the first place. The irony of a teacher wearing something that wouldn’t pass under the student dress code is interesting to consider. If the committee was put together and guidelines set up then we might see the end of teachers dressed in ludicrous pieces of clothing. Despair should no longer be felt at the sight of inappropriately dressed teachers. Soon they may look like professional adults and their cringe-worthy clothing won’t interfere with our learning.

Pro/Con Editorial

Each entry must • have two (2) columns that express opposing viewpoints on one topic • the columns should be written by two people and featured on one page of the opinion/editorial section • both columns should be glued to the same entry form • have a standing head that indicates the pro/con nature of the package • carry bylines or other writer identification to indicate the personal opinion nature of the content • A school may submit a second entry in this category, and the pieces may be written by the same columnists or combination including one of the same columnists.


• topics relevant to interests and/or welfare of school or students • two pieces, while offering opposing views, are consistent in style and tone • both pieces win reader interest with impelling leads • present evidence/interpretation in logical sequence • State issue; uses effective examples, facts and comparisons to clarify • deal with specific issue; avoids preaching, rhetoric and clichés • show sufficient thought and knowledge of subject, developed with personal style • sentences, paragraphs of varied length; written clearly, concisely and vividly • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division

1 Derek Robertson & Izabela Babinski Grand Blanc 2 Stephanie Marchetta & Maria Quigley Flushing 3 Tyler Waffle & Amy Zesiger Gull Lake 4 Justin Hollister & Rhysie Torrey Quincy M Jim Stetler & Sheila Smith Bellevue

A Cut Above 11

In-Depth Feature In-Depth Feature

This is a single story, which may contain a sidebar or infographic from the same author. This is not a spread or a special section. Entries should concern subjects of a substantive and contemporary nature and go beyond the surface facts, give the reader detailed background information with interpretation based upon the facts and background information and often (but not necessarily) an analysis as to its meaning It is an elaboration of the WHY.Multiple sources are necessary.


• lead captures attention, arouses curiosity • topic relevant to interests and/or welfare of schools or students • extensive, intensive and thorough investigation • effectively combines basics of good news and feature writing • effectively organized with smooth transitions; carefully outlined • sentences, paragraphs of varied length; clearly written clearly, concisely and vividly • proper diction/grammar • balanced and fair presentation

First place winners by division 1 Justin Harris Saline

2 Jessica Switch Groves 3 Joey Nowak East Grand Rapids 4 Brenden O’Donnell & Rick Truskowski Catholic Central M Billy Baesch Traverse City East Jr.

12 A Cut Above

Former Groves student attacked on spring break urges current students to re-think plans By Jessica Switch Groves HS Jessica Jaglois, 2002 Groves alumni, fell to the ground writhing, her whole body shaking in agony. Fear clouded the attacker’s eyes as he believed she was having a seizure and he fled from her battered body. She stayed motionless, feeling numb, before obtaining the strength to lift her body and run. She kicked off her shoes with fury and sprinted across the junkyard barefoot. Glass cut into her swollen and bloody feet, as she raced towards her friend, who was lying nearby. After she plucked her friend from the damp ground, they ran, petrified. Jaglois is just one of more than 700,000 students between 18 and 24 years old who are victims of alcoholrelated sexual assault or date rape, and 100,000 report having been too intoxicated to know if they consented to having sex. On spring break of 2003, Jaglois and a friend became part of this statistic when they decided to take a trip to the Bahamas. “Right when we got out of the club, everyone was all over the place soliciting their taxis. There were at least twenty different taxis, and an unmarked cab was not uncommon. We picked an unmarked cab, thinking it was a regular cab and got into the back seat. Two other men came in. That should have set off an alarm in my head,” Jaglois said. “But I was drunk and wasn’t thinking straight.” The men took Jaglois and her friend to a junkyard. Two of the men took hold of the girls while the others stayed back and watched. Jaglois was sexually assaulted and was thoroughly beaten by her attacker. After, she faked a seizure, which scared the men away. The only way out of the junkyard was to jump off a cliff. Jaglois shoved her more dazed friend into the ocean and jumped in after her. Jaglois’ spring break ended in the hospital, where they sewed up her cuts and washed the blood off of her bruised skin. “My dad couldn’t recognize me. My left eye was completely swollen shut, and my lip was so fat it was touching my nose. My whole face was so swollen, it was huge. I was unrecognizable,” Jaglois said. Jaglois survived the attack, but others weren’t as lucky. Natalee Holloway, a student in Birmingham, Alabama, was only 18 years old when she decided to go on a graduation trip to Aruba in the spring of 2005. Although Holloway has not been found yet, it has been predicted that she was kidnapped. Like Jaglois, Holloway got into an unmarked car. Despite these events, the majority of Groves students still plan to spend spring break in the Caribbean islands, Mexico, or on cruises, with drinking ages of 18 and younger. 80% of 51 seniors surveyed planned their spring break vacations to these international destinations, and 78% of those students on spring break will be drinking. Although 78% of these trips will be chaperoned, accord-

ing to the students, only 15% of those chaperones will enforce any restrictions on the students. “If the kids end up in a major problem, the parents are there to bail them out. I am disappointed that parents aren’t taking an active roll in chaperoning. I don’t think 17 and 18 year olds have developed enough responsibility to drink,” assistant principal Cathy Hurley said. “As soon as you begin drinking, your judgment goes down, and that is not an assumption. That is a fact. When kids drink, bad things will happen. Not having restrictions just sets students up for dangerous situations.” While some chaperones are lenient, others are diligent on enforcing restrictions upon their children. Lois Langberg, mother of student Laura Langberg, feels chaperones are useless without giving restrictions. “I can’t judge what other people do, but for me I need restrictions to know that my child will be safe,” Langberg said. “It is not that I don’t trust my daughter. I just don’t want to put her in a vulnerable situation.” Even with the chaperones lacing restrictions on their children, some students expressed a feeling of responsibility on spring break for their actions and the actions of their peers. “I am certainly going to keep an eye on everyone, but that is just me,” senior Elise Fazio said. “I enjoy the role of helping people out. Like anyone else, I would feel guilty if something happened to one of my friends. It would be horrible. Sometimes it is just something you can’t control. There are, however, always decisions you can make to limit those possibilities.” Other seniors are becoming more aware of the possible consequences of reckless drinking, especially after the Natalee Holloway tragedy. “In a way it makes me nervous to go on spring break,” senior Erin Wolf said. “I definitely think about what happened in Aruba, and, when I go out to clubs, I know it will always be there in the back of my mind.” According to the results of the September survey, 92% of the students are aware of the kidnapping in Aruba, but only 21% said that it makes them apprehensive to go on spring break. “I think that is the phrase of our generation, it is not ‘What up’ or ‘How you doin’, its ‘That can’t happen to me’. We don’t really think about the end of our lives. But we are mortal just like anyone else and it is so important to keep it in our minds,” Jaglois said. Administrators also feel it is vital for students to be aware of the tragedy, and they place much of the responsibility on the parent chaperones to place restrictions on the children to avoid tragedy. “As sad as it is [what happened to Jaglois], maybe parents will start to realize that spring break is dangerous, and that it could happen to one of their kids,” Hurley said.

Attack, continued on page 21

Informative Feature

High at school By Conor Darrow West Catholic High School He wakes up, gets ready for school and kisses his mom goodbye. Next, North Farmington senior Stephen* continues his routine by climbing into his car, rolling a joint and coming to school high. Nothing out of the ordinary for Stephen, who does this, on average, about four days a week. “I go to school high because I figure if I study high, and take the test high, I’ll get high scores,” Stephen said. He started smoking marijuana in the middle of freshman year and first came to school high in the beginning of sophomore year. “It gives me an enriched learning experience, and I like the feeling of being totally confused,” said Stephen. Smoking marijuana is not a new trend for America’s teens. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports marijuana is the most frequently used illegal drug in the country. Studies show nearly 50% of teenagers try marijuana before they graduate high school. North Farmington senior Mike* started smoking marijuana when he turned 15 and began coming to school high not long after. “I love being high in school because it actually helps me to focus better, and I think harder to solve problems I would normally be unable to solve,” Mike said. Like Stephen and Mike, junior Carlton* also smokes marijuana before coming to school because he said it “relieves stress I get from home and it just makes school fun.” Carlton began smoking marijuana in seventh grade. “I was forced to try it and I ended up liking it because it made me feel good and I just loved to let loose and feel good,” Carlton said. Carlton continued smoking marijuana through high school and, like Stephen, often smokes before school. Carlton said his worst experience was when he came to school late after smoking marijuana and he walked into class late, with bloodshot eyes and “smelling of mad reefer” while the teacher stared him down as he took his seat. Zero Tolerance North Farmington senior, Brian* has been smoking marijuana for three years and comes to school high about twice a week. Although he has never been caught in school, Brian has been caught by the police on more than one occasion. After sneaking out late one night and parking on a dirt road to roll a joint, two headlights appeared in the distance. The police crept to a halt beside their vehicle and the officer got out and searched the vehicle. “He made us get out and asked if there were any drugs or weapons in the vehicle,” Brian said. “He then told me to get out and after finding my weed, he made me dump it out in the bushes, then he made me smash my pipe,” Brian said. In order to prove a student is high in school, the North

Informative Feature Farmington administrative team takes a “zero tolerance and team approach” toward the subject. “Students only endanger themselves by coming to school high,” North Farmington High School Police Liaison Officer Duane Fox said. If a student is suspected of being high or to have marijuana or other illegal substances, the first step administration takes is to contact the police liaison. Next, the administration discusses with the police the best way to handle the situation, and then they move in. “The school is allowed to search anything on the property, be it a locker, vehicle, backpack, person or even issue a drug test,” assistant principal Mrs. Maryjo Kulis said. “But we always give a student the opportunity to come clean.” “Kids make mistakes and it is better to admit them, because if you’re honest, in the end, it can help you,” Kulis said. “We really need the help of the teachers, because they are with the students on a daily basis and they know how students act. We trust their judgment,” Kulis said. “One can usually use common sense to prove a student of being under the influence of marijuana. If they’re acting out of character, walking suspiciously or if they have slurred speech,” said Officer Fox. Under the Constitution of the United States, the Fourth Amendment (Search and Seizure) protects individuals under criminal law, but schools come under civil law. This means as long as a school has reasonable suspicion, school officials, for the safety and discipline of the student body, are allowed to search anything on the property to prove a student of having illegal and/or unsafe substances, including marijuana. After the administration determines if anything must be searched or the illegal substance is located, the incident results in an immediate suspension, the duration of which is determined by a district officer. The subject is also taken into police custody. If the subject is a juvenile, they are released to their parent/guardian after being booked by police. If the subject is an adult, they are arrested and held in jail until a bond can be established. “The rules are there mainly for the safety of the students and for the safety of the entire student body and administration,” assistant principal Mrs. DeeAnn Lacy said. “When drugs are found in the building it becomes an issue of safety for the students,” Lacy said. “One of the best methods of prevention is by lack of exposure,” “Part of the excellent culture which North Farmington has,” Lacy said, “is that most students know they are in a good school they have a responsive administration and students have a responsibility not only to themselves, but to each other to keep North Farmington a safe, positive place.” “Kids who care about themselves tend not to risk the opportunity of being caught or making poor decisions,” Lacy said.

Stories should be written to inform or instruct. Facts are obtained from research, interviews and observations.


• leads capture attention, arouses curiosity • topic relevant to interests and/or welfare of school or students • thorough investigation through research and interviews • combines basics of good news and feature writing • organized with smooth transitions • balanced and fair presentation • sentences, paragraphs of varied length; written clearly, concisely and vividly • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division 1 Holly Beach Grand Haven

2 Sean Fitzpatrick North Farmington 3 Andrew Hoadly Traverse City Central 4 Samuel Haddix Community M Erin Wiggins Traverse City East Jr.

High, continued on page 22 A Cut Above 13

Human Interest Human Interest Feature

Human interest features appeal to the emotions of the reader with inspiration, motivation, pathos or humor and often make effective use of quotes.


• leads capture attention, arouses curiosity • emphasizes new element, fresh angle • colorful, lively presentation; effective form/style • reflects adequate research, sound interviewing techniques from a variety of sources • effective use of facts/ quotes • interesting; appeals to the emotions • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division 1 Lauren Fifolt Grand Haven

2 Meredith Gage Portage Central 3 Melissa Boitos South Lake 4 Martin Tinkerhess Community M Lydia Belanger Traverse City East Jr.

14 A Cut Above

Hero returns from war badly scarred, but positive By Melissa Boitos South Lake High School

It was June 17, 2005. Private John Chrzanowski’s Army platoon had picked up two Iraqi hostages. These captives agreed to direct the soldiers to places that housed explosives, terrorists, and hidden intelligence. Instead these prisoners sent Chrzanowski’s five-man team into an ambush. The Humvee Chrzanowski traveled in hit a roadside bomb. The explosion killed his lieutenant and three other soldiers. It knocked Chrzanowski unconscious. The fire roared. Enemies launched another tocket at the truck, hitting the gas tank. Chrzanowski’s hands burned to the bone. His tendons melted. The raging fire took Chrzanowski’s outer ears. Deep burns seared into his arms and legs. And he was the lucky one. After the explosion he found himself next to a shallow river, almost 70 percent of his body blistered with third degree burns. Forty minutes later help arrived. But Chrzanowski refused to be wheeled onto the Black Hawk to be airlifted to a hospital. As the medic was loading him onto a gurney, he said: “Doc, you gotta give me a rifle!” “Are you nuts?!” “I gotta go back out there and fight!” The medic was firm. Although the young soldier didn’t want to leave his rifle behind, the doctor told him he would die if he didn’t reach a hospital within 20 minutes. A Long Road to Recovery After leaving Baghdad, the medics took Chrzanowski to a burn center in Germany where he spent three days before returning to the States. The doctors told him he’d need to stay at the San Antonio Brooke’s Army Medical Center for the next year or so. There he’d face reconstruction surgeries, as well as getting specialized treatment and therapy from top-notch burn specialists. Before they could begin dozens of skin graft surgeries, his surgeons had to rebuild Chrzanowski’s tendons and muscles. “I couldn’t pick up my fork and feed myself; I couldn’t pull up my own pants; I couldn’t do anything like that,” Chrzanowski said. “It made me realize that the small things in life are the most important. Things that normal people take for granted.” To prevent infection, skin from Chrzanowski’s back and chest was grafted onto his burned limbs. Daily, Chrzanowski squeezes into a compression suit, removing it only to shower. Its purpose is to keep his skin more normal looking. The jet black suit resembles children’s clothing, so tight that it flattens the inflamed red scar tissue

forming underneath it. “If I didn’t wear this thing,” he said, “I would look like a giant strawberry cream puff.” Chrzanowski is no longer earless. The surgeons created temporary, glue-on prosthetic ears for him. They encouraged him to help with the design, altering it as he pictured the ears that used to protrude from the sides of his head. The colors and shading were then blended to match his natural skin tone. The ears look real. When Chrzanowski’s scar tissue is done healing, cartilage will be removed from his rib cage, and permanent ears will be sculpted for him. “It’s amazing what they can do,” he said. Staying Positive Chrzanowski is not the first in his family to have a prosthetic facial feature. His grandfather’s nose had to be removed several years ago due to skin cancer. When the Chrzanowskis get together they joke they can play a version of Mr. Potato Head, swapping Chrzanowski’s ears for his grandpa’s nose. “You have to have a sense of humor about it, otherwise you get self-conscious and worry, ‘Are people gonna stare at me?’” Chrzanowski said. “But now I just don’t care. “Those people don’t know half of what I know, so I’ll let them stare, and I’ll let them draw their own conclusions. The fact of the matter is that I had to fight my ass off. This is what I look like from it.” The War in Iraq It was natural for Chrzanowski to become a soldier. He loved to hunt. After realizing that college wasn’t “his thing,” Chrzanowski joined the Army. Preferring to party, he said that he didn’t make it to many classes. “I needed someone to put a boot in my rear end,” he said. “I wasn’t responsible enough to go to school.” After basic training, his orders had him leaving Fort Benning, Ga., and reporting for duty in Iraq. Once there he learned about live on the other side of the globe. He said children were everywhere, and they were starving. Each time an American vehicle approached, they ran out to stop it. He heard them repeating “Mista, Mista, do you have food?” This phrase was the only English they knew. Even the hungry children avoided the unsanitary mounds of garbage that littered the streets. Bombs were hidden in there. “You give them [the children] what you have,” Chrzanowski said. He said the media doesn’t have it right. They don’t show you the children. We are fighting a war for the people of Iraq.

Hero continued on next page

Personality Profile Biker Boy: Freshman Ben Fisher rides towards pros BY Elyse Fisher Grand Haven High School In the middle of January, the bike park is blanketed in snow. For freshman Ben Fisher, despite the patches of black ice smothering the pavement and frost clinging to the trees, this is still biking paradise. He spends his wintertime sliding across the black ice on his bike, jumping into the snow piles and falling. “I go out biking with a friend,” said Fisher, sporting a Livestrong bracelet and a blue bike chain from his Haro bike strung around his neck. “We make snow piles and then jump into them. We’re planning to make as big a pile as possible this year. I also mountain bike during the winter. There’s more tread. We have Sunday mountain bike rides where I work, so every Sunday we bike back in the parks.” Fisher will even follow his bike off of the pier. “Over the summer, I went out onto the middle of the pier with some friends,” Fisher said. “I was in the middle of a 180° on the pier and couldn’t land it that day. I got mad and let go of the bike, which bounced off of the pier. I took my shoes off to go in after it and pulled it up the ladder. Then the shin guards came off, too. So I had to go in the water to save those, too. The waves were going over my head. Everything was soaked. The wheels on my bike seized up on the way home.” Fisher started riding early and his love has maintained. “My dad said I got on the bike pretty fast without training wheels,” Fisher said. “They all say I’ve come really far for as long as I’ve been biking. “ One day, Fisher even hopes to make it pro and join famous stunt cyclists like his hero Dave Mirra. “I’d been biking for about one year and started jump-

ing more and got more serious,” Fisher said. “I noticed that I’d come as far in one year as someone who’s been biking for four years. That’s when I thought I’d like to go pro.” Fisher has been working hard toward becoming a pro biker. Each day, he faithfully practices new tricks. “Every chance I get right after school, I bike until it’s dark out,” Fisher said. “I go directly to the park after school to do tricks on the ramps. When I have a problem or I’m really stressed out, I bike harder. It gets everything out and I relax. When I’m with my bike, I’m always on it.” Friend freshman Mariano Puegh thinks highly of Fisher’s biking abilities and believes he’ll make it far. “He’s the best in the park, really,” Puegh said. “He’s probably going to do tricks for movies or something like that.” After high school, Fisher hopes to journey out of Grand Haven to pursue his biking career. “After I graduate, I want to go on a road trip with my friends and go to bigger parks,” Fisher said. “Hopefully [then] I’ll get noticed. If [a recruiter] notices me, they’ll want to see [more] of my tricks and see me ride. If they like me, they’ll sign me with whatever company that likes me.” Currently, Fisher works at Loose Spokes bike shop When he first started working there, he was assigned to odd jobs, such as dusting, sweeping, and cleaning glass, but soon his boss knew he was ready become a mechanic. “I could really tell that he possessed the skills necessary to become a mechanic,” boss Jack Crawford said. “He was orderly.” Despite the lack of skate parks and visits of pro bikers in Grand Haven, Fisher is determined to reach his goal. “Right now it’s hard for me because of where I’m located,” Fisher said. “But I’m not going to let that stop me.”

Hero continued from page 14 “We are not over there for oil,” Chrzanowski said. “I hate when people say that. We are not there to make it another America. We are there to hopefully one day let these people stand up for themselves and say, ‘We are a free country, we are free people, and this is how we are going to run it.’” He cautions students about basing their opinions on media coverage. He said to do your research before you take a stand on something. Chrzanowski worries that the media only shows the negative aspects, such as “this many soldiers died today,” or “This many soldiers were wounded.” He believes that everyone is entitled to their own opinion. “That’s what I’m fighting for,” he said, “to give people that right.” Progress in Iraq is slow, according to Chrzanowski, because “you are not fighting face to face with a uniformed enemy.” Facing the Future He believes the Army’s medical board won’t let him return to active duty.

“I want to go back to being in the infantry,” he said. “If it’s possible, I’d like to go back to Iraq because there is still a war going on. I still have a job to do over there. But I don’t think it’s gonna happen.” Chrzanowski loved the experience he got from joining the Army. He loved the life, he loved the respect, and he loved living life on the edge. “It takes a certain mental stability to volunteer for the front line of any conflict, but it was my job,” he said. “It was what I was put there to do. I was good at it.” Despite all he’s gone though, he said that he would “do it all over in a heartbeat. Every second of it.” He remains optimistic. “You can either get depressed about it, and let this become a negative thing for you,” Chrzanowski said, “or you can say ‘I’m alive. Even though I’m not physically able to do a lot of things, I have to get myself back to where I can,’ otherwise you’re just gonna drive yourself into the ground.”

Personality Profile

The personality profile captures the life, interests and accomplishments of well known or interesting people, based on interviews. The subject(s) should have experiences, thoughts and accomplishments worth reporting. Anecdotes add to the personality profile.


• leads capture attention, arouses curiosity; reason for sketch is made clear early in story • emphasizes fresh angle; individualizes person • colorful, lively presentation; effective form/style • reflects adequate research, sound interviewing techniques from a variety of sources • avoids encyclopedic listing of subjects accomplishments • effective use of facts/ quotes • interesting; appeals to the emotions • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division 1 Elyse Fisher Grand Haven

2 Sarah Fletcher Mona Shores 3 Andrew Jennings Fenton 4 Joe Stapleton Community M Jarrod Casella Bellevue

A Cut Above 15

Diversity Coverage Diversity Coverage

Stories tell about lifestyles, challenges, and potential of those from a diverse background. Will cover more than plight, also includes how the subjects dealt with it.


• topic relevant to school or students and reflects lifestyles, challenges and potentials of those from a diverse background • sharp, attention-getting lead grabs reader and arouses curiosity • shows thorough reporting skills though research and interviewing • effective use of facts/quotes from both primary and secondary sources • balanced, fair and sensitive presentation • sentences, paragraphs of varied length; written clearly, concisely and vividly • proper diction/grammar; use of punctuation

First place winners by division 1 Allison Fifolt Grand Haven

2 Betsy Callan North Farmington 3 Andrew Jennings Fenton 4 Joslyn Young Community M Ellie Okerstrom Traverse City East Jr.

16 A Cut Above

Student sells art on Ebay By Ellie Okerstrom Traverse City East Jr. High “Loving the Sun”, “Rock Concert”, and “Dad in Heaven”; at first glance these words may appear to be random phrases of combined letters, but look behind the words and look at the writer and artist of them, Emily Scott. Emily is a bright young woman who happens to be a sufferer of Downs Syndrome, but more importantly she is an artist. “I liked to draw and then my mom said I should start painting, she bought me all of my paints and stuff.” Scott’s paintings range from pictures of stars to her dog Rosie. Mostly, however, Emily said she enjoys painting flowers, gardens, and woods. “Emily has always loved to draw ever since she was old enough to hold a pencil. Her brother is an artist and sells his artwork locally. He has been her inspiration,” said Sherrie Rozanski, Emily’s mother. Out of all the paintings Emily has created, she has a definite favorite. “My favorite is Dad in Heaven.”

Mason Hentartner, one of Emily’s fellow classmates, even picked his favorite of Emily’s pieces. “I’m thinking rock concert. It looks cool.” As for where Emily sells her paintings she decided to favor Ebay, the worldwide Internet auction site. Emily has been selling her paintings on Ebay for just over a year and has currently sold nine paintings. Most of Emily’s pieces have a starting bid of a few dollars but have sold for as much as sixty-five dollars. “Emily wanted to get a job and make her own money. At 15 and having Down Syndrome, getting a job was not likely. So we came up with the idea of selling her artwork on Ebay so she could make her own money,” stated Rozanski. Emily’s artwork is printed on 5 1/2 by 4 1/4 notecards for one dollar a piece. 8x10 prints (acrylic on canvas) can also be ordered for fifteen dollars each. To make a purchase of one of Emily’s paintings, email Emily’s mother at mom n Paypal, money and credit cards are accepted. To order by phone call (231) 642-0094. In the near future Emily will also be selling Christmas cards, along with the note cards and acrylics she is currently selling.

Environmental Coverage

Sick of the flu By Beth Johnson Saline HS Jenny Cannell is sick of the persistent cough. She’s sick of not being able to concentrate in class. She’s sick of the mounting Kleenex she goes through in a day. Cannell is just sick of being sick. “In class, I was more worried about breathing and sneezing rather than what the teacher was teaching,” the junior said. Cannell is just one of the many who are affected by what is referred to as the “common cold.” With the cold and flu season in full swing, both students and teachers are feeling the effects of the cold. Sophomore Sara Soules is just one of many who is tired of the sniffling and sneezing. Soules, who has had a cold for over a week, is starting to see how it is affecting her normal school day. “Right now I can’t hear out of my right ear because I have a cold,” Soules said. “It’s hard to play in Orchestra because I can’t really hear what I’m playing.” The effects these nagging illnesses have on both students and teachers extends beyond the stuffy head and fever. Keeping up with schoolwork in the midst of it all can be difficult. For many, such as Cannell, maintaining concentration is a struggle. “Staying focused in school was hard,” said Cannell who fought a nasty cough and runny nose for about a week. “I felt sleepy and just out of it that it was affecting my performance in school.” For some, staying home to get over their illness is something that is needed. According to the National Institute of Allergy and infectious Diseases, 22 million school days are lost annually in the United States from kids getting the common cold. Many students at SHS are missing vital school days because they are battling a cold or the flu. For senior Dan Place, missing three days of school put him behind in a lot of his schoolwork. “I have a lot of catching up to do,” said Place. “I missed a lot of lessons while I was sick, so I have to make those up.” While a common cold just brings symptoms such as sneezing, coughing, and fatigue, some students even

Environmental Coverage have symptoms such as nausea and vomiting, which is also known as the flu. “Having the flu was horrible,” said Place. “I had a lot of flu-like symptoms, and it really just ran me down.” According to registered nurse Arlene Kofahl, the spread of germs is one of the keys to avoiding the common cold and flu. “It’s very easy to spread germs to one another,” Kofahl said. “Sharing drink, makeup, and other things that people put into their mouths are the easiest way to catch a cold.” In schools, the chances of getting a cold are very high for students and teachers. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases reports that more than 200 viruses are known to cause the symptoms of a common cold. According to Kofahl, on average, a person gets two colds per year, and that number usually increases with age. Sharing desks, school materials, bathrooms, and doorknobs make it easy for people to catch a cold. Registered nurse Nancy Vos-Morin stated that simple things such as regular hand washing and a healthy diet are key to staying away from the common cold. “People want to make sure they get plenty of rest and having a balanced diet so that they keep a good immune system,” Vos-Morin said. “Washing hands regularly is important too. If you can’t wash your hands all the time, carrying around anti-septic hand sanitizer would be a good idea.” For some students and teachers, approaching the cold and flu season with a holistic view can be a simply way of making sure that people don’t get sick. Holistic health, growing in popularity over the past few years, is concerned with the whole body, rather than just one part. By simply convincing one’s body that it isn’t going to get sick, individuals might be able to dodge illnesses. “Holistic health is about the mind, body, and spirit,” said teacher Natalie Corte. “It’s a preventative way of life rather than an actual fix or cure.” For Cannell and her fellow classmates, approaching the cold and flu season with the right mindset might prevent that persistent cough, fatigue, and stuffy nose the next time it flows around.

This story will focus on an environmental, health or science topic. It can be a straight news story or an investigative piece.


• topic relevant to the school or students and covers health, science or environmental story that is informative • sharp, attention-getting lead grabs reader and arouses curiosity • shows thorough reporting skills through research and interviewing • effective use of facts/quotes from both primary and secondary sources • balanced, fair and sensitive presentation • sentences, paragraphs of varied length; written clearly, concisely and vividly • proper diction/grammar; use of third person

First place winners by division 1 Beth Johnston Saline 2 Justin Colman & David Zemon Groves 3 Kylie Fitzsimmons Loy Norrix 4 Brianna Burgess Shrine M Ellie Okerstrom Traverse City East Jr.

A Cut Above 17

Sports Feature Sports Feature

Stories may include personality profile, informative, interpretive (why), and/or human interest specifically related to sports.


• lead captures attention, arouses curiosity • emphasizes new element, fresh angle • colorful, lively presentation; effective form/style • reflects adequate re-search, sound interviewing techniques • avoids summaries of published materials • effective use of facts/ quotes • interesting; appeals to the reader’s emotions • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division 1 Stephen Bender Midland 2 Andy Reid Mona Shores 3 Mike Bearman Haslett 4 Luke King Community M Morgan Wernowsky Bellevue

18 A Cut Above

Face Off By Luke King Community High School With only a little time left on the clock, Travis Graves, a Community High junior, is all that stands between one lone opponent with the puck and a loss for his team. As the enemy streaks down the ice, the crowd roars, but all Graves hears is a cemetery-like silence. It is only after he makes the save that he allows himself to become energized by the crowd’s cheers. “The next big save is the next one,” stated Graves. This mentality helps him to maintain an, “unreal focus,” as he so accurately puts it. Even though Graves may be a talented individual who has a knack for making the key save, he has another reason for performing at such a high level. That reason is Ezra Shaffer. Shaffer, a Community High sophomore, is constantly competing with Graves for the starting goalie position on the Pioneer High hockey team. The season might be over, but the battle for the coveted starter spot is still being fought. Graves, though only a year older than Shaffer, brings with him a lifetime of experience in hockey. “I just try and help out the rookie,” he said. Graves even has the appearance of a grizzled veteran with his battle-hardened eyes. Shaffer is younger than Graves, but has been on the team for just as long. With potential oozing out of his ears, the coaches can’t wait to see what he will accomplish next season. Graves and Shaffer combined to start in roughly 95% of Pioneer’s games. This may have gone to some people’s heads, but Graves and Shaffer both remain down to earth and candidly talk about how nice a guy their back up is. Despite the fact that the two competed for the starter spot this season, and will continue to do so next season, Graves and Shaffer are still able to maintain a nice working relationship. “It’s a positive relationship,” Shaffer said, “We feed off each other.” Graves was quick to agree with this statement, taking an old-school attitude towards the game, “It’s not about who stops the most pucks, it’s about who tries the hardest and works the most,” he said. However, the relationship of Graves and Shaffer has not been without its fair share of low points. After a disappointing loss to Brighton, their season was essentially over and the two came close to losing their work ethic

completely. But somehow, through the perfect combination of Graves’ refusal to quit, and Shaffer’s unflappable enthusiasm, the Pioneers were able to finish their season on a high note. Bonds like these are what coaches rave about. This kind of chemistry cannot be fought with or forged, it has to be found. Pioneer sees to have hit the jackpot with Graves and Shaffer. Remember, just because they might not be able to go pro, doesn’t mean they are not awesomely good. Both goalies do not take the occasional prod from their teammates about attending Community, but the fact that the upper two-thirds of the goalie squad is made up of Community High students speaks for itself. Shaffer is a bit sentimental; he will not pick one save over another to be his favorite. “I love ‘em all,” he said. Just like a caring father, each one of Shaffer’s saves is his baby, and he loves every one of them equally. Unfortunately, in the world of competitive hockey, sentimental moments are few and far between. Both goalies are constantly looking over their shoulders at each other. When Graves gets a little better, Shaffer responds by becoming a lot better, and then Graves has to respond by becoming better still. Both of them are constantly trying to outdo the other, trying to become stronger, faster and more unstoppable. All the hard work paid off in the games. Every hour of work that they put in during practice is one more minute in the game that they could stop all the shots being fired at them. Both players would like to play college hockey, but neither one believes that he has the talent required to earn that all-powerful full-scholarship. That having been said, both players have an entire off-season to become better before the games begin and the scouts start really looking at them. This may seem like a lot of time to the untrained eye, but both players know how quickly it will pass. “I can’t half-ass it,” Graves state. Both he and Shaffer know that the competition between them for the starting job will only increase in the coming year. Community High fans can rest assured that next year the lethal combination of he Gravedigger and the Shafter will be back. Not only to stop pucks, but also to let the crowd to wonder how any two goalies could ever be this good.

Sports Column Hey, Hey Hockey Town…Hockey’s back again By Nathan Rings Midland High School Hey, Hey Hockey Town…Hockey’s back again “It’s almost seven, Mom, can’t we eat dinner yet?” My voice had an edge of desperation to it. We were waiting for my sister to get back from piano. “Just be patient, Nathan,” was the expected reply. I finished dinner that night in record time, and quickly took a shower. I had been waiting for this for over 15 months: the start of the NHL season. I had gotten all of my homework done for the next day. I even did my physics homework at home-yes all of you who see me at lunch with my homework, you read that correctly, I actually did it at home. I sat down on the couch at about seven fifteen, and watched the pre-game show, with Mickey Redmond at center ice, reading an ode to hockey fans, and talking about how much they had missed seeing Stanley Cups made out of cardboard. One by one, the players, coaches, trainers, and even the masseur were introduced. I thought it was a little overdone, but hey, hockey needs all the publicity it can get right now. As they went through the line-up, they missed Steve Yzerman. For a moment, my heart stopped. Stevie Y had already signed on for another season-where was he? The announcers blatantly ignored my questions, and continued commenting on how the injuries to Chris Osgood and Nicholas Kronwall would impact the team. No word about Yzerman. I skipped the next minute of the pre-

game show as I bolted over to my computer. I hit the Wings’ homepage and looked under press releases. Sure enough, there was Yzerman listed as injured. He would not be in the lineup for a few weeks. Nuts. My curiosity briefly satisfied, I sprint back to the TV to catch the opening face off. Here we go I couldn’t keep thinking, as the puck got dumped in to the St. Louis end. Time to find out if the Wings are really as good as they were when the season was cut short. My questions and predictions received feedback almost instantly as Pavel Datsyuk (who was in Russia less than a month ago playing for the Moscow Dynamo) scored the first goal of the season. 1:35 into the first period. You must understand that at this point I was jumping up and down yelling “Yesss! That’s the way to get ‘em early! Yeah! We bad, we bad.” Needles to say, my entire family knows better than to try and watch a Wings game in the same room as me. They quickly get annoyed with my celebrations, my know-it-all sports trivia, and my multiple observations and predictions, which are usually overturned less than thirty seconds later. At 10 p.m. the game ended, and I had had my fill of hockey (though I did switch to the New York-Philly game on OLN to get the final score). I finally have something better than West Wing to watch on Monday nights, and I can finally follow a winning team (the Tigers and the Packs aren’t the class of their leagues). Most importantly, however, I can finally scream, yell, and throw objects at the TV and be passionate about the sport I love with a semi-unhealthy obsession.

Sports Column

Each story must consist of samples of two columns under the same standing head, authorized by the same writer(s). Each column must carry bylines or other writer identification to indicate the personal nature of the content. Each entry in this category must be written by a different writer(s).


• sharp, attention-getting lead • expresses personal opinion; uses consistent style; demonstrates knowledge of sports • reflects thought/research, freshness, individuality; avoids cliches • effective use of facts/ quotes or supportive material • informative, interesting, entertaining • upholds journalistic integrity • sentences, paragraphs of varied length; written clearly, concisely and vividly • proper diction/grammar

First place winners by division 1 Nathan Rings Midland 2 Lauren Lee H.H. Dow 3 Mike Bearman Haslett 4 Sophie Hartman Plainwell M Billy Baesch Traverse City East Jr.

A Cut Above 19

Sports News Sports News

Sports news stories may include general sports news or sports events and are constructed in news style.


• lead features interesting, important angle • uses colorful, lively style • avoids cliches, editorializing • displays knowledge of sports; uses understandable terms • shows research/interviewing skills; emphasizes how and why • effective use of facts/ quotes • proper diction/grammar; use of the third person • unity/coherence

First place winners by division 1 Eileen Creutz Saline 2 Macy Al-Shatel Mona Shores 3 Louise Gradwohl Haslett 4 Joslyn Young Community M Alex Bolthouse Bellevue

20 A Cut Above

Catalytic coaching By Alex Bolthouse Bellevue Middle School Red. Anger. Blood. Fire. Power. Passion. In Native American culture, red is related to all of these. In European culture, red represents happiness, prosperity and good fortune. British scientists Russell Hill and Robert Barton wanted to know whether red had any power itself. The answer? Yes, it does. They studied the 2004 Olympics and found that competitors who wore predominantly red uniforms were more likely to win. They also found that the U.S. soccer team was more likely to score goals and win when they wore red uniforms instead of their blue or white ones. There are examples of more recent champions in sports wearing red on their uniforms. The USC Trojans, the Detroit Pistons, The Boston Red Sox, The New

England Patriots, and Tiger Woods (who always wears red on Sunday because it is the final day of all PGA tournaments), have all won championships while wearing red. Hill and Barton also studied birds. They found that when a red band was wrapped around a bird’s leg, it became more dominant in the flock. Previous studies have shown that color affects people’s moods. For example, while red excites people, blue and green have calming effects. Hill and Barton think that red may also intimidate people and make the team wearing red act more aggressive. So what does all this mean for you? Should you be winning every game because you wear red for Bellevue? Not exactly, Hill and Barton found that the red rule only held true when the contests were relatively close. But next time you play your friend in a game of one-on-one, it would not hurt to wear a red shirt.

Sports Photo Sports Photo

Any non-portrait action photo directly related to sporting events should be entered in this category. Photos will be judged on both the quality of the photo as printed and how it was used in the publication.


• effective cropping to center of interest • clear, sharp details • good, sharp contrast with varied levels of grays, black, and white or colors • attracts, holds reader’s attention • avoids distracting back/ foreground • all elements in photo combine with caption to tell story • action, rather than posed photo • captures dramatic moment By Brad Johnson, Lakeview High School

1 John Monaghan Grosse Pointe South

Attack continued from page 12 Not only do the administrators feel strongly about the parent chaperoned trips, the PTSA also supports this by giving each parent a contract to sign in student registration packets. Each parent who signs the contract is ensuring that they will only send their child on a “fully chaperoned spring break trip”. “The flyer is a joint initiative from the PTSA of Groves and Seaholm,” Hurley said. “They have been carrying it out for three or four years now. The PTSA feels very strongly that they need to keep reminding parents that spring break is a safety issue. I think the flyer also takes the pressure off the parents who need to stand up to their kids and say, ‘No, you are not going on an unchaperoned trip.’” With Natalee Holloway still not found, many students wonder what path they can take to avoid these situations. Along with the students, parents and teachers search for alternatives to spring break trips. “I think a trip with two or three friends with two or three families planning something together is a much

First place winners by division

smarter idea,” freshman and senior dean Dawn Warren said. “Not going to the Bahamas. Maybe going somewhere such as Disney Land or the Grand Canyon instead. A place that is family friendly, where you can still have fun and act silly without any temptation to drink and have sex.” Though Jaglois understands it may be too late for students to change spring break plans for their upcoming trip in April, she urges students hat it is not too late to act cautiously and acknowledge the tragic events that have taken place on spring breaks recently. “My experience wasn’t as bad as most. I really lucked out. I could have been raped or killed. However what happened to me shouldn’t have happened. Just for a split second your entire way of thinking can be changed and I am lucky that it didn’t define my life,” Jaglois said. “It’s unfortunate that young people must worry about such extremities, but it is always better to be safe than to find yourself in a predicament once it is too late.”

2 Stephanie Ackerman Traverse City West 3 Brad Johnson Lakeview Battle Creek 4 Travis Reith Plainwell M Sarah Cobb Traverse City East Jr.

A Cut Above 21

News/Feature Photo News/Feature Photo

Photos in this category should be non-portrait, non-sports photos based either on on-the-spot coverage of an event that had news value and timeliness, or on the drama and emotion characteristic of features. Photos will be judged on both the quality of the photo as printed and how it was used in the publication.


• effective cropping to center of interest • clear, sharp details • good, sharp contrast with varied levels of grays, black and white or colors • attracts, holds reader’s attention • avoids distracting back/ foreground • all elements in photo combine with caption to tell story • action, rather than posed photo • underscores news/feature importance

First place winners by division 1 Rachel Wiedemann Southfield 2 Steve Thompson H.H. Dow 3 Emily Detwiler Haslett 4 Mallory Zarate Plymouth Canton M Sam Anderson Birmingham Covington

By Steve Thompson, H.H. Dow High School

High continued from page 13 Harmful effects According to certified addictions counselor at Broe Rehab Services in Farmington Hills, Len McCulloch said the teenage brain isn’t fully developed until age 22. “Since the brain is underdeveloped, smoking marijuana in high school has particularly harmful effects on the lungs,” McCulloch said. One joint has the same cancer producing toxins as 18 cigarettes. “Marijuana has over 100 chemicals that enter your body when you inhale marijuana and over 100 more chemicals, when you actually light the marijuana,” said McCulloch. Marijuana can also increase the risk of cancer and has bad effects on the respiratory system. Marijuana accumulates in the microscopic spaces between nerve cells in the brain. These spaces are known as “synapses.” This clogging obstructs actions by slowing and impairing the transfer of critical information. “Marijuana is becoming more and more popular as the gateway drug of choice for teens today,” said McCulloch. “What kids don’t know about marijuana,” McCulloch said, “is that when they get marijuana, it has most likely gone through many hands, and they don’t know what has been added to the marijuana Kids think they are being good friends by not reporting friends using the drug, but in reality they’re not.” What is marijuana? So, what is marijuana? Marijuana is a conglomerate of dried leaves, stems, buds and flowers from the hemp plant. Marijuana has over 200 slang names, the most common name being pot. All types of marijuana alter the brain.

22 A Cut Above

Marijuana contains over 400 active chemicals which affect the body, but the extent of the effects depend on the potency of the marijuana. The main chemical in marijuana is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or more commonly called THC. The THC content in marijuana has been increasing since the 1960s. Student Assistance Program For the students who find themselves in trouble with substance abuse, North Farmington offers the Student Assistance Program (SAP) for those who suffer from substance abuse and many other hardships one can endure. The Student Assistance Program was created in the late 80’s and is run by Mrs. Linda Lethemon and Mrs. Marcia Wyderko. The SAP is a place where kids can go to talk about their problems and get help for them. One course offered by the SAP is called INSIGHT, and it focuses mainly on marijuana use. INSIGHT is a concerned persons group and is not just for students, but parents and friends who may be suffering from substance abuse. Some of the programs offered through the SAP are voluntary, although “if a student is found to have marijuana or any other illegal substance, the program is mandatory,” Lethemon said. The INSIGHT program consists of 10 sessions throughout the school day. If you or someone you know is having trouble and has resorted to drugs or alcohol as a way out, forms are available in the counseling center or see Mrs. Lethemon or Mrs. Wyderko. *Names have been changed.

Portrait Portrait

Photos in this category must show the personality and/or character of the people and/or animals photographed. No more than two subjects should be featured in the picture. Sports portraits should be entered in this category. Photos will be judged on both the quality of the photo as printed and how it was used in the publication.


By Danielle Bollwahn, Laingsburg High School

• effective cropping to center of interest • clear, sharp details • good, sharp contrast with varied levels of grays, black, and white or colors • attracts, holds reader’s attention • avoids distracting back/foreground • background appropriate for subject • natural appearance rather than posed photo • emphasizes personality of subject

First place winners by division 1 Amanda Lawrence & Brian Scharr Novi 2 Rachel Evans H.H. Dow 3 Paige Medor Fenton 4 Danielle Bollwahn Laingsburg

A Cut Above 23

Editorial Cartoon Editorial Cartoon

This category includes only editorial cartoons. This cartoon appears on the editorial/opinion page. It makes a point and delivers commentary or opinion.


• appears on editorial page • simple in design • shows high technical quality • centered on one topic • timely • subject familiar to reader in everyday life • displays artistic talent • message succinctly stated

First place winners by division 1 Raina Khatri Grand Haven 2 Kevin Chambers Flushing 3 James Duke Loy Norrix 4 David Janowski & Jen Hyde Plainwell M Emily Mumford Traverse City East Jr.H By Emily Mumford, TC East Jr. High

Comic Strip Comic Strip

Each installment of a comic strip counts as a separate entry. The purpose of the comic strip is to entertain.


• entertaining • simple in design • shows high technical quality • centered on one topic • timely • subject familiar to reader in his everyday life • displays artistic talent • message succinctly stated

First place winners by division 1 Eva Dou Grosse Pointe South 3 Bryce Mata Kearsley 4 Sean Schoenherr Marshall M Brian Mark Birmingham Covington

By Bryce Mata, Kearsley High School

24 A Cut Above

Illustration Illustration

This category includes photo illustration, original artwork or original computer artwork used to establish a theme or mood with the intent to enhance any news/feature/sports article.


• clearly develops a theme or mood to enhance story • displays artistic talent within potential for expression using art, photography or computer • photos offer good, sharp contrast with varied levels of grays, black and white • art shows knowledge of composition, line and shading • attracts, holds reader’s attention • uses color, screens, typography and detail effectively • sizes and placement draw reader’s attention to story without overwhelming content • shows thought and creativity

First place winners by division 1 Sarah Scully L’Anse Creuse North

2 Nolan Flynn & Kyle Sherman Portage Central 3 Jeremiah Britton Jackson Northwest 4 Camille Bonham Community By Sarah Scully, L’Anse Creuse North High School

M Sheila Smith Bellevue

A Cut Above 25

Information Graphics Information Graphic

This category includes charts, graphs or diagrams created by hand or by computer and used to supplement or replace written content and give the reader information in a visual form.


• clearly enhances the story • visuals help clarify, simplify or visualize information • visually attractive • avoids excessive lines and/or illustrations that might confuse the reader but shows effective detail • entertaining and/or informative • clear lines and even strokes as opposed to retraced or broken lines • taken advantage of art of computer technology • uses color, screens, typography and placement effectively By Zoe Lesser & Brittany Brando, North Farmington High School

First place winners by division 1 Kristin Thomas Novi

2 Zoe Lesser & Brittany Brando North Farmington 3 Sam Peck & Caitie O’Neil Fenton 4 Nico Curtis Community M Tim Dewitt & Joespeh Giancarlo Birmingham Covington MS

26 26 A A Cut Above Above

Advertising Layout Advertising Layout

This category includes ads for which students have created the artwork or photography, written heads and copy and done the layout. Professionally created logos may be used. Ads should be attractive, informative and give all essential information. This entry is a single advertisement, not a page of advertisements.


By Iris Faraway, Community High School

• copy provides desired information • copy appropriate: concise, specific and fast moving • copy attempts to motivate the reader • illustrations/photos clear • parts of the ad assembled to give interesting appearance (balance) • gaze motion or eye movement arranged properly • distinctive: simplicity, action, emphasis, color, photography • standing details attractively arranged (trademark, name, address)

First place winners by division 1 Jason Willis Stevenson

2 Staff Traverse City West 3 Tim LaBarge Sturgis 4 Iris Faraway Community M Michael Doak Traverse City West Jr.

A Cut Above 27

Front Page/News Magazine Front Page Magazine

Page contains nameplate and references to inside stories. Page generates reader interest and uses effective photos and/or artwork. Page will be evaluated for overall use of space.


• attractive nameplate, harmonizes with design, includes date, issue, volume, school, city and state • cover should be considered work of art • strongly relates to the inside contents • maintains visual interest • cover illustration (if used) may be compelling in size with a possible teaser headline depicting the mood of the story • photos effectively cropped, of varied size, shape, emphasizing action • cover can refer readers to inside pages

First place winners by division

1 Adam Monkaba, Joe VanTiem & Jackie Nemesi Troy 2 Joey Krancich, Ryan Bort & McKenzie Dickens Holt 3 Brad Johnson Lakeview Battle Creek 4 Anneka Goss & Nico Curtis Community By Brad Johnson, Lakeview High School

28 A Cut Above

Front Page/Newspaper Front PageNewspaper

Page contains nameplate. No advertising used on this page. Page will be evaluated for content and design for overall use of space.


• attractive nameplate, harmonizes with design, includes date, issue, volume, school, city, and state • page generates reader interest; showcases important content • sound, journalistic style of writing • maintains visual interest in lower half of page • consistent use of headline styles/type faces • photos effectively cropped, of varied size, shape, emphasizing action • demonstrates effective graphic style, with graphic devices contributing to impact of page • clear relationships demonstrated between story and related pictures/art • cutlines stand out from body copy; effective lead-ins used for longer cutlines

First place winners by division 1 Suzy Vuljevic Novi 2 Dana Cronyn Portage Central 3 Kate Cowger Fenton

By Ashley Gawlik & Chloe Christensen, TC East Jr. High School

4 Steveie Watson Ithaca M Ashley Gawlik & Chloe Christensen Traverse City East Jr.

A Cut Above 29

Story Package Story Package

Content should be based on one significant topic built around a dominant story packaged with secondary stories. Does not need to be a true spread or full page design


• package generates reader interest; showcases strongest content • one dominant story element and graphic element, packages with secondary elements in form of stories/ graphic • visual elements tie package together to create cohesiveness, even if package extends to another nonconsecutive page or does not fill an entire page • graphic devices, if used, contribute to overall impact of package • design reflects effective graphic style, personality of publication • consistent use of headline styles/type faces • content covers appropriate, timely issues/topics • stories written in sound, journalistic style • headlines get smaller in relation to importance of elements in package

First place winners by division

1 Meredith Morgan, Jim Morse & Nate Zemanek Midland 2 Lindsay Miars Portage Central 3 Staff Lakeview Battle Creek 4 Staff Community M Chloe Christensen Traverse City East Jr.H

30 A Cut Above

By Meredith Morgan, Jim Morse & Nate Zemanek, Midland High School

Editorial-Opinion Page/Spread Editorial Opinion Page/Spread

Page will be evaluated for content and design. At least one editorial must appear on the page(s) entered. Other items may include columns, bylined opinion, polls, surveys, reviews, letter and cartoons. The masthead is normally on the opinion page. No advertising should appear on the editorial page, but may be used on the op-ed page.


• includes masthead with statement of responsibility for publication • graphic devices, if used, contribute to overall impact of page • cartoon, illustrations are attractive, understandable, using shadings/ screenings • design reflects effective graphic style, personality of publication • opinion supported by facts, research and examples • ads not included on editorial page • strong visual center of interest • consistent use of headline styles/type faces • editorial should be unsigned but clearly identifiable through standing heads and page ID, column width and/ or type size. • content covers appropriate, timely issues/topics • stories written in sound, journalistic style

First place winners by division 1 Brian Scharr Novi

2 Samah Choudhury Portage Central

By Samah Choudhury, Portage Central High School

3 Michelle Neurohr Kearsley 4 Staff Mercy M Chloe Christensen Traverse City East Jr.

A Cut Above 31

Feature Page/Spread Feature Page/ Spread

Pages will be evaluated for content and design. Content may be based on a single story, a package of related stories, or diverse feature stories. Advertising may or may not in incorporated into the page design.


• page generates reader interest; showcases strongest content • strong visual center of interest; page maintains visual interest throughout • consistent use of headline styles/typefaces; special types restricted to unique packaging of a single element • photos effectively cropped, of varied size, shape, emphasizing action • demonstrated effective graphic style with graphic devices contributing to impact of page • clear relationships demonstrated between story and related pictures, art • content reflects student interest • stories written according to sound journalistic style

First place winners by division

1 Sarah Cyetubo, Tiffany Starvin & Zane McMillin Grand Ledge 2 Ce Celia Payne Mona Shores 4 Jon Levinson, Nico Curtis & Rachael Strecher Community M Ashley Gawlik Traverse City East Jr.

32 A Cut Above

By Sarah Cyetubo, Tiffany Starvin & Zane McMillin, Grand Ledge High School

Sports Page/Spread Sports Page/Spread Pages will be evaluated for content and design. Content is restricted to sports. Advertising may or may not be included on these pages.


• avoids sports jargon, cliches • strong visual center of interest; visually attractive top and bottom • demonstrates knowledge of subject • consistent use of headline styles/typefaces; head sizes indicate importance of story • cutlines stand out from body copy; effective lead-ins used for longer cutlines • graphic devices and ads, if used, contribute to impact of page, are attractively packaged, and encourage readership • clear relationship between story and related pictures/ art; potential for each story to draw readers • photos effectively cropped, of varied size, shape, and emphasizing action • page design reflects personality, contributes to attractiveness of page

First place winners by division 1 Jason Willis Stevenson

2 Amanda Vander Meulen Portage Central 3 Lynden Baesch, Shea O’Brien & Sarah Herpst Traverse City Central 4 Luke King & Nico Curtis Community M Chloe Christensen Traverse City East Jr.

By Amanda Vander Meulen, Portage Central High School

A Cut Above 33

News Page/Spread News Page/Spread Pages will be evaluated for content and design. Content is restricted to news. Advertising may or may not be included on these pages.


• most important story is in top half of page • graphic devices, if used, contribute to overall impact of page • design reflects effective graphic style, personality of publication • strong visual center of interest • consistent use of headline styles/type faces • content covers appropriate, timely issues/topics • stories written in sound, journalistic style • headlines get smaller as they go down the page

First place winners by division 1 Suzy Vuljevic Novi

2 Linden Mault & Gina Holder H.H. Dow 3 Kate Cowger & Amanda Huff Fenton 4 Luis Leon, John Wallington & Alia Midoun Community M Chloe Christensen Traverse City East Jr. By Kate Cowger & Amanda Huff, Fenton High School

34 A Cut Above

Entertainment Page/Spread Entertainment Page/Spread

Pages will be evaluated for content and design. Content is restricted to features and news dealing with entertainment (music, plays, movies, reviews). Advertising may or may not be included on these pages.


• page generates reader interest; showcases strongest content • strong visual center of interest; page maintains visual interest throughout • includes logos/labels to separate types of entertainment (books, videos, music, etc) • consistent use of headlines styles/typefaces; special types restricted to unique packaging of a single element • photos effectively cropped, of varied size, shape, emphasizing action • demonstrates effective graphic style with graphic devices contributing to impact of page • clear relationships demonstrated between story and related pictures, art • cutlines stand out from body copy; effective lead-ins used for longer cutlines • content reflects student interests • stories written according to sound journalistic style

First place winners by division 1 Jason Willis Stevenson

2 Emerald Mida Utica 3 Diane Teall Fenton By Eric Brefka, TC West Jr. High

4 Adam Mott Plymouth Cnaton M Eric Brefka Traverse City West Jr.

A Cut Above 35

Photo Story Photo Story

A photo story would include the use of at least three or four photos on a related theme to tell a story. It must include headline and captions and may include copy. Judging will be on the overall impact of the contests and layout. Submit tear sheet only.


• page includes at least three or four photos on related theme • headline and cutlines are evident • byline is included • copy, if used, is well-written and appropriate • photos are of good quality • dominant photo is evident • pictures work together to tell the story

First place winners by division 1 Alex Jakubiec Grand Haven

2 Ben Frothingham Waterford Kettering 3 Steve Cavanagh & Megan Pohl South Lake 4 Travis Rieth Plainwell M Sarah Cobb Traverse City East Jr.

By Travis Reith, Plainwell High School

36 A Cut Above

Professionally Published Page

By Staff, L’Anse Creuse North High School

Professionally Published Page

Page has be to published in a professional newspaper. Send complete page. Page will be judged on stories, design and photography.


• shows balance of news, sports, feature, opinion, in-depth • presents evidence of good design (modular, dominant element, visually appealing, etc.) • page is clearly identified as school/student page • flag is evident with name of school, address, date, etc. • distinctive style is apparent • editorial is placed in a distinctive location on page • consideration of audience is evident (relevant topic, issues covered)

First place winner *Divisions 1-3 Combined due to lack of entries* Staff L’Anse Creuse North

A Cut Above 37

2005-06 A Cut Above, Newspaper  
2005-06 A Cut Above, Newspaper  

A sampling of the best from the Michigan Interscholastic Press Association's 2005-06 Individual Category Newspaper Contest.