Issue 6

Page 1








Friday, February 14, 2020

Phone policy sparks discussion by Ellis Maloney staff reporter

Students at Mounds View generally have the perception that the ability to use their phones at school is a right; however, this is not the case at Stillwater Area High School. The policy at Stillwater, which was implemented last year, prohibits students from using their phones in classrooms and instructs them to keep their phones in their backpacks or lockers. At Mounds View, students are allowed to have their phones within the classroom and there are not set rules on where phones should be kept otherwise. Along with prohibiting phone use in the classroom, this policy also has rules regarding set places where the phones can be used and outlines inappropriate use of social media and cyber-harassment of other students. If a student is caught using their phone in a classroom, the teacher can take his or her phone and turn it over to the administration. “If the teacher sees [your phone] once, they take it and put it on their desk, and if they see it again the next day it goes to your counselor,” said Ana Weaver, 11, a student at Stillwater. The only way for a student to reclaim his or her phone is to have a parent or guardian come to the school and retrieve it for the student. This rule is intended to increase parent involvement in their student’s phone usage and further teach them when it is appropriate to use their phones. Students at Stillwater have their own opinions about their school’s new policy. Weaver believes that this new approach benefits students because it encourages them to focus more on the material in class. She argues that taking away distractions is necessary for students to be successful in school. “I think it’s a good policy because teenagers are addicted to their phones, and we go to school to learn,” Weaver said. “Our phones prevent us from reaching our full potential.”

At Mounds View, most students have negative views on how they would feel about the implementation of this policy. “I feel like a policy like this wouldn’t help,” said Matt Edgar, 11. “Even though there might be a problem with phones at Mounds View, students should decide when they go on their phones, and if students don’t decide to use them in classrooms, it would clearly just set them apart from the other students who aren’t as focused.” Some students also think this policy

“Actually, some teachers here at Mounds View have been pushing for a rule like the one Stillwater has.”

there becomes a problem. In essence, Stillwater’s phone policy was implemented to combat the distractions that arise when they are present, thus reducing a student’s focus in class. Teachers at Mounds View who feel that phone use is a problem are pressing for a change in the school’s phone policy. “Actually, some teachers here at Mounds View have been pushing for a rule like the one Stillwater has,” Espy said. “It’s definitely possible for a rule like this to come to Mounds View.” In contrast, most students at Mounds View believe that this policy would not assist students in their learning, and they oppose the idea of implementing this policy. Mounds View has a different phone policy than that of Stillwater, with students often taking for granted the privileges they have with their phones that results from staff’s overall leniency.

chemistry teacher Jessica Espy would be effective. “Learning is something students should do and do willfully. Most students know the consequences if they don’t pay attention or are on their phones in class,” said Ella Jones, 11. “Most students probably won’t support this rule and will find a way to get around it. It just gives them an opportunity to rebel.” She believes that although a phone policy might be necessary for some students, it must be up to students to decide to forsake the usage of their phones in class. Some teachers at Mounds View believe that phones serve as a large distraction in the classroom and the phone usage prevents students from learning. “I don’t mind if students use their phones in my classroom for school-related things like Google Classroom or Kahoot,” said chemistry teacher Jessica Espy. “When students are constantly checking their phones is when

illustration by Jenna Stellmack

Vadnais Heights zoning changes by Sterling Hills staff reporter

A proposed idea for more high-density housing in Vadnais Heights has left local citizens nervous that their neighborhood will give up its peace and quiet to make room for apartments and townhomes. Others are happy that the flood of new consumers will benefit local businesses and bring in additional tax revenue. At Home Apartments, a company that owns multiple housing facilities around the Twin Cities, is working to get approval from the city for this development. They are working to establish 77 townhomes and a 91-unit apartment building by the intersection of Highway 96 and McMenemy Street. As of now, approval is planned to be put up to vote by the city council around April. At Home Apartments claims that it would be a safe and relaxed place to live, with the target demographic of parents whose children have grown past the schooling age. Currently, this property is zoned as a place to build offices. At the Vadnais Heights City Council meeting on Jan. 21, the board voted to move forward in considering the conversion of this site to a Planned Unit Development (PUD). Once the site is zoned as a PUD, At Home Apartments can proceed to acquire the necessary

permits and build multi-family housing. Vadnais Heights held a few public hearings surrounding this topic, and was met with an overwhelmingly negative response from residents. Many people close to this area expressed worry that an influx of people would disrupt the relative peace and quiet. They believe the additional commotion combined with the heavy traffic would affect the existing residents’ quality of life. Others are unhappy with the change in aesthetic the new housing will bring. One local resident, Jakob Sprague, 11, enjoys seeing the empty lot when he turns onto his street to go home. “It’s nice to be able to look over and see a natural kind of space when I turn onto McMenemy,” Sprague said. “A lot of these huge highrises aren’t as nice to look at and block sunlight, which I’m not looking forward to.” He also noted the effect it will hold on his commute to school and the troublesome construction process. “The traffic will definitely be hard to get used to,” Sprague said. “Plus, having construction so close to where you live can get loud and annoying.” The area currently hosts a handful of other businesses, and this would be one of the last undeveloped lots to be used up. Ian Bronson, a Mounds View High School parent living across from the zoning site in Vadnais Heights, is

concerned about the higher population density putting a strain on resources and services such as the well water and roads. He added that the construction itself could take a long time, and it would be an inconvenience to him and others throughout the process. His spouse, Lara Bronson, is happy to see more socioeconomic diversity in the community, but she is worried that lowerincome housing might reduce the value of her and her neighbors’ homes. However, some people are not concerned about the changes. “I don’t think it will affect my own life that much except make traffic worse on Highway 96, which is how I get to school and a lot of other places,” said Lily Bronson, 11. However, she does like the current look of the area: a break from the repetitive cookiecutter neighborhoods that are scattered throughout the Twin Cities, which the new housing will add to. There are a few more steps before anything will be built: In the upcoming months, the Vadnais Heights Planning Commission and the City Council will each vote on the topic and hold a public hearing before the rezoning measure can be approved. If they receive approval, At Home Apartments can move on with their project, with or without the support of neighboring residents.

illustration by Jenna Stellmack


Friday, February 14, 2020


Are vape detectors the answer?

by Yatharth Sharma staff reporter

This school year, Stillwater Area High School installed vape detectors in all of their restrooms. The detectors aim to identify aerosol, a product of vaping, which helps supervisors identify students vaping in areas off-limits to video surveillance. The new detection system is one of the many precautions that was put in place to help the agenda that Stillwater has taken against student vaping. Last school year, Stillwater’s administration and staff made the executive decision to lock a number of school bathrooms in order to limit the vandalism and vaping that took place in the bathrooms. In response, students launched the “free to pee” campaign in response to the lack of unlocked bathrooms. As a result, the campaign caused some bathrooms to be unlocked, and some of the staff were assigned a hallway to monitor instead of closing off the bathrooms completely. Similar to Stillwater, vaping has impacted the students of Mounds View, which can be noted in bathrooms through the scent of the various vape flavors. In response, the Mounds View administration invited a pulmonologist from Children’s Minnesota Hospital to speak to students about the dangers of vaping. However, many speeches often do not connect to the entire

population of Mounds View; only a certain group of students choose to listen. “We are dealing with different populations with kids who [vape] to experiment and kids who are [addicted],” said Principal Stephanie Bruggers. “That’s kind of the different levels in which we are trying to support students from proactive information that [vaping] is dangerous, and you don’t want to even try it versus students who feel that they have to rely on [vaping] to get through their day.” This difference among student groups in Mounds View has prompted the administration to remain open to an alternative option. The speech from the pulmonologist targeted students considering vaping for the first time.. On the other hand, the installation of a vape detection system would potentially target students who are already addicted and need more strict measures to deter them from vaping. However, the implementation of such a system is not up to the school. “[Installation of the vape detection system] is a district decision,” Bruggers said. “Schools cannot do something in isolation; something like that would have to be district-wide.” According to CNBC, the number of high school students in the United States who vape has increased to an all-time high of 27.5% as of September 2019. Due to the recent nature of this practice, experts are unaware

of the adverse health effects vaping has. However, the uncertainty surrounding the practice has not deterred much youth. The different measures Mounds View has taken were proactive, yet teachers and students have mixed opinions regarding the efforts to install a vape detection system. Students who have been affected by their peers vaping are now against vaping and have supported aggressive means to curb the practice. “A lot of the people vape, I see it many times. I think the detectors would help limit it,” said Kevin Xiong, 10. Despite the promising concept of the system, many believe that there is not enough data available about them to merit their installation. “I don’t know [if the vape detection system will work] without more information, but it might, depending on cost, effectiveness [and] whether or not it is actually a deterrent,” said biology teacher Mark Johnson. The installation of the system in Mounds View remains unclear. For now, some staff members have decided to monitor the effect that the system has on vaping amongst the students at Stillwater. “I’m curious to learn more about this vape detection system at Stillwater and learn if it’s effective,” Johnson said. If the results are promising, the district may follow suit.

Gifts not to give your Valentine’s Day date

Wil ted Flo we rs

Empt y Box o f Choco lates

A Real Bear

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The Corona vir us

Mono eart H n a m u AH

Expire d Can dy

illustrations by Jenna Stellmack

Coronavirus indirectly impacts MV by Joseph Steil staff reporter

The 2019 novel coronavirus is an illness that is quickly spreading all across the world. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the disease is a part of a group of coronavirus variants that derive from animals. Some of these strains can find their way to humans and infect the population, such as with previous outbreaks like the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome and currently with the novel coronavirus. Originating from a live animal market in Wuhan, China, the death toll from the novel coronavirus has reached 811, according to the New York Times as of Feb. 9. While there are only a few cases of the virus present in the United States right now, there are rising concerns in the public due to the ease of transmission. Several cities in China, including Wuhan, have been closed off and quarantined in order to prevent the spread of the virus. Although the coronavirus has seen minimal presence in the United States, the threat of its infectivity

impacts Mounds View students with family and friends overseas. Lilly Nowatzke, 12, has relatives who are living in China. “It’s kind of scary knowing that your family members might catch it, especially with how quickly it’s spreading,” Nowatzke said. The outbreak has also resulted in travel limitations put in place to and from China. One student that is concerned with these restrictions is Emily Ueki, 12. “For graduation in June, my dad is supposed to travel [from Japan] to Minnesota,” Ueki said. “We hope they don’t restrict traveling in and out of Japan.” Several airlines have already stopped flying to and from mainland China, including Delta Airlines, United Airlines and American Airlines, according to the New York Times. As the disease spreads, more airlines may decide to cancel flights in the area and other places nearby. Although the rapid spreading and extensive media coverage has caused panic and worry over the deaths, the coronavirus is not the deadly killer that many think it is. While one result of having the coronavirus is death, most of those who have died were older and already had a weakened immune system, according to the New York Times.

As the virus is not yet seen in Minnesota, many students believe that the Wuhan coronavirus has not largely affected Mounds View. Some students believe that only a small number of students may be personally impacted by the virus. “Some people are definitely going to be affected here, but most of the students and teachers at Mounds View aren’t because no one here has it, and the chances of it spreading throughout the U.S. seems pretty slim right now,” said Jed Liang, 11. Although some students at Mounds View have been impacted indirectly by the coronavirus, no students have currently been diagnosed with the coronavirus, yet the threat of the virus still lingers. Only factors such as time and U.S. efforts will tell if the Wuhan coronavirus will become a major problem in the United States and here at Mounds View.



Friday, February 14, 2020

Eric Feng ups his game by Arfa Ali staff reporter

Mounds View students are well known for their enthusiasm and high achievement in school. Students like Eric Feng, 11, take this to a greater, collegiate level. With a passion and interest in biology, Feng works as a researcher at the University of Minnesota. He earned this opportunity by emailing several professors at the school in hopes of receiving a position in biology research. “I was really lucky that a professor was glad to accept me,” Feng said. He currently works under Dr. Jop van Berlo, an Associate Professor in Medicine at the University of Minnesota. Prior to this opportunity, Feng’s basic exposure to the biology field was taking the AP Biology course offered at Mounds View. In addition, he was granted a rare chance to accompany his father to China to shadow an open-heart surgery. “There’s no way a high schooler in the U.S. would be able to get it because it isn’t accepted to have high schoolers in the operating room in the U.S., so I was lucky that I got the opportunity in China,” Feng said. This experience sparked Feng’s interest in the medical field, specifically cardiology, and has influenced his current research project. “Seeing all

those patients and how much heart disease impacted them led me to want to find a better treatment for heart disease,” Feng said. “Right now, I’m trying to develop fully mature cardiomyocytes from stem cells. That way, we can implement them in patients whose hearts have lost cells from heart disease.” Before diving into the research, he read extra material to gain an understanding of the specificities within his lab. “The PI [principal investigator] sent me a bunch of articles to read that were relevant to my research topic,” Feng said. “I would read for hours to figure out two or three articles because there is a lot of complicated vocabulary. I didn’t have a clue what certain things meant, so I had to look it up and annotate all those papers to get a gist of what was currently happening in the field.” As of now, Feng studies the development of cardiomyocytes or in simpler terms, heart muscle cells. “Surprisingly, this is something that nobody has done before, and this research can help improve therapeutic stem cell treatment for heart disease,” Feng said. Cardiovascular disease ranks as the leading cause of death in the world, which Feng hopes to alleviate with his discoveries. “This research could potentially create a viable treatment for heart disease patients,”

Feng presents part of his research at a symposium at the University of Minnesota. photo courtesy of Eric Feng

Feng said. In the summer, Feng would devote up to 40 hours per week in the lab; however, he has reduced his time to 20 hours to manage school work and his research. During his time in the lab, he is usually doing wet lab techniques, which are procedures performed with chemicals. He

uses certain chemicals that help isolate cardiomyocytes and stains those cells for various subcellular structures using immunocytochemistry — the process of using antibodies to stain various parts of the cell with a fluorescent marker. “I stain the cells with fluorescent antibodies, and I look at them with a really

experience for future jobs and internships. I’ve also learned the importance of taking responsibility and communicating clearly,” Wang said. Jobs and internships allow many people to not only get experience to the world after high school and college, but also opportunities to give back to the community in various ways. Deepta Jasthi, 12, works at Mathnasium, a math center that teaches children math. Start-

reit worked at SeaQuest in the Rosedale Mall this past summer. Mainly having the responsibility of taking care of the animals, particularly the reptiles, Oberreit made sure the creatures were healthy and happy. “I would double check, and then I would go around and get weights on different animals, check their wellbeing, check on temperatures and tell guests there about the different animals,” Oberreit said. After closing the store every day, Oberreit would then check on the reptiles and give their nightly feedings. Utilizing and learning from his unique experiences, Oberreit made sure that he used his job at SeaQuest as a way to change his perspective on life. “The biggest impact this job had left on my life is that work somewhere you enjoy, and also that life isn’t predictable so be ready and don’t stress,” Oberreit said. The possibilities are endless for high school students looking for jobs, as they may find themselves in a job they have not even heard of before. The experiences from these students show how the path to enhancing one’s passions remains incessant.

A deep dive into student jobs by Johnny Yue staff reporter

With many students at Mounds View having a job after school and during the weekend, the melting pot of high school work experiences diversifies every year. In fact, the varied range of jobs that Mounds View students have may allow one to see their friends at places such as Punch Pizza and Target. Additionally, a few students work jobs that are unorthodox for a typical high school student. If you happen to stop by Chippewa Middle School, you might bump into Bjorn Eggen, 12, who works as an auditorium technician. Eggen ensures that the sound, lighting and projection equipment in the auditoriums of Chippewa and Mounds View are properly installed and function smoothly for clients who rent out an auditorium. Eggen’s techsavvy skills allow events, such as large photography conventions and non-profit launches, to become popular attractions

Wang (above) working on website development at Land O’Lakes photo courtesy of Meryl Wang

for many. This passion for technology stemmed from Eggen’s previous experiences as a tech crew member. “I was in-

volved in tech crew for the plays at Chippewa and Mounds View, and some of my older friends from tech crew worked as technicians and recommended me for the job,” Eggen said. Using these experiences from tech crew, Eggen has done everything one could possibly think of when it comes to tech for a dance or convention. As this job maximizes the possibilities of his talent, Eggen cherishes the people he has met along the way. “I enjoy meeting the different people who rent out the space since they are sometimes people I likely wouldn’t run into otherwise,” Eggen said. Similar to a job, Meryl Wang, 12, has an internship at Land O’Lakes, Inc., in which she works various IT jobs, from data quality assurance to server management and website management. Wang attributes Genesys Works, a program that allows high school juniors to obtain professional work experience at companies, as the catalyst that pushed her to apply for the internship. Wang says she wanted to experience working in a corporate environment, rather than that of a retail job. “I wanted to learn more about IT skills, since technology is becoming increasingly more important,” Wang said. Working four hours each day for five days a week, Wang enjoys the internship’s ability to allow her to become exposed to work that will actually be applied to the real world. “Some of the things I enjoy are being able to do real work, such as building a website that will later be used by our customer retailers,” Wang said. “I also enjoy the opportunities to shadow professionals from many different fields.” Acquiring new skills and expertise from this internship, Wang hopes her experience will lead her to bigger steps and opportunities in the future. “Working at Land O’Lakes has given me a feel for working in a large corporation, which is a useful

Mathnasium workspace (above) photo courtesy of Deepta Jasthi

ing in August of 2019, Jasthi works with students to enhance their math skills. She usually works with 4 students at a time, allowing for small group discussions and one-on-one tutoring. Jasthi’s experiences at Mathnasium allow her to get to know her students on a personal level. “Working at Mathnasium is a pretty unique experience because a lot of the time it’s just talking to the kids and hearing about their day, not just doing math,” Jasthi said. In addition, Jasthi cherishes the moments in which students finally grasp concepts that they have been struggling with. “It’s always nice when the students finally understand a topic, or they’re like ‘when you explain it like that, it makes a lot more sense,’” Jasthi said. Starting at a young age, Kyle Oberreit, 11, had a growing interest in reptiles, as his parents had kept a variety of them around the house as pets. To dive deeper into his passions, Ober-

Oberreit (above) poses with one of the turtles at SeaQuest. photo courtesy of Kyle Oberreit


Friday, February 14, 2020

Enhancing the hype

by Nicholas Stenlund staff reporter Expensive shoes, waist packs and other items stand out as a new trend at Mounds View. Some students have invested their time and money in buying and selling different styles and name brands, such as Supreme, Bape, Off-White, Palace and more. This practice is part of the growing hypebeast culture, where people idolize expensive, unique styles and items, that is taking place at Mounds View. Some people, including a few innovative students at Mounds View, have found a way to profit from reselling these high priced, limited-edition items. Reselling is not an easy task, and is easier said than done. “Yeah, it is really a lot more [work] than people think be-

Drew DeBacker (right) wearing a Supreme popcorn tee and Bred Toe Jordan 1 shoes pictured next to Logic (left). photo courtesy of Drew DeBacker

cause I’m always on sites looking when restocks hit, and then finding a buyer can also be hard,” said Drew DeBacker, 12, an avid reseller. The combination of low quantity and high demand for these certain products means that the items tend to sell out quickly. Because of this, stores will try to restock their supply as soon as possible. However, it is hard for buyers to know exactly when these restocks are actually happening. “You never know when a shoe might restock,” DeBacker said. After a store or brand restocks an item, the value can also decrease significantly in a short period because there are more items available. This inconsistent value of some items leads to risk while attempting to resell items. Another danger for sellers is finding buyers who are willing to pay the marked-up price for these limited items. With a large number of hypebeast enthusiasts in Minnesota, there are many potential buyers, but also lots of competition between sellers. “It’s really, really easy to sell, it’s just that you have to find a seller pretty quick or other people are going to sell the item,” said Will Sacay, 12. Multiple factors must be considered when purchasing so-called hype items with the intent of selling them again with a marked-up price. Clothing size, brand, style and common interests are all taken into account to increase the likelihood of a sale. According to DeBacker, different brands carry different levels of hype with them, meaning that the more hype a brand might have, the more people are inclined to pay after the item is sold out in stores. “People are willing to pay so much more for them [hype items] once they sell out,” DeBacker said. To some, however, the title of a hypebeast can sometimes feel like a negative stereotype. “The term hypebeast is kind of annoying because a lot of people

who are considered hypebeasts actually like what they are buying, instead of just doing it for the appreciation from other people,” said Joe Hoffman, 10. In contrast, Sacay was drawn in by styles that happened to be associated with the term hypebeast. “When I was a freshman, I went to New York, and while I was there I went to the Supreme and Bape stores, which are hypebeast brands, and holy guacamole, I was in,” Sacay said. Overall, the hype at Mounds View will continue to grow. These hypebeast students are an inspiration and stand out with their unique (and expensive) sense for fashion. For anyone interested in becoming a hypebeast, it is important to never give up. “Don’t get discouraged if you don’t get a Supreme box logo right away; it takes time,” Sacay said.

They each passed the prescreens for seven of the eight colleges, which led them to begin scheduling flights and practicing for the many live auditions in the winter. “All the colleges throw three dates at you that you can come and you have to do this complex puzzle of finding out what dates work,” Daniel said. After arriving, the audition preparations continue, including campus tours as well as accompanist rehearsals. Amina and Daniel both stress the importance of scheduling a trial lesson with the studio teacher, which helps to gauge their teaching style and classroom dynamic. Then comes the actual audition, which can be stressful. “You have about fifteen minutes to show four strangers fifteen years of preparation,” Daniel said. As of now, both of them have already completed two out of the seven live auditions.

their teachers of any upcoming absences. Although balancing academic work and music proposes a challenge, Mounds View Orchestra Director Lucas Shogren provides the Knapps with support and helps to prepare them for a career in music. Having earned a degree in music performance, Shogren offers advice and exposure to what pursuing photo courtesy of Daniel Knapp the degree would entail. “[In class] we do very basic music theory and music history,” Shogren said. “For students who are interested in a music performance degree in particular, I try to help them realize what it actually looks like and what things you need to dig into.” He advised the twins on what specificities to look for in a music school, saying a good studio teacher is the most important because he or she will be with them for their whole college career. Even in his current orchestras, he teaches students advanced repertoire that prepares them for the level of playing required to succeed in college. Daniel and Amina both share appreciation for going through the rigorous process together. “Sometimes at auditions, the other kids there that are auditioning can be kind of crass and arrogant and won’t want to talk to you,” Daniel said. “It’s nice to have a friend there.” The twins will continue auditioning and sharing their talents through the next few months and find out their admission results in the spring. In addition, they are both grateful for all the support to follow their passions. “It’s not something that’s very highly accepted in a lot of different families because it is so hard to be successful and to have a stable life,” Amina said. “I feel very privileged to have the support system I’ve had with my parents and teachers.”

Talented twins by Kate Spence staff reporter It is almost time for seniors to decide what they would like to do after high school and, for the majority of Mounds View students, which college they plan to attend next year. For twin seniors Daniel and Amina Knapp, the extensive application process continues on. The two are planning to further their music careers in college and have devoted an immense amount of time and effort into their craft, currently playing in multiple orchestras and chamber groups, in addition to taking private lessons. As for college, Amina hopes to pursue violin performance and a focused study of chamber music, which is played in a small group with one person on each part. On the other hand, Daniel looks to double major in cello performance and psychology but shares Amina’s desire to focus on chamber music. Despite the slight differences in majors, both siblings experience the same rigorous audition process. In the standard college application process, students apply online and wait anxiously for the results. However, music program applications are more demanding. First, each student must apply online and submit a “prescreen” audition video in the fall playing multiple selections on their instrument. The student will then be notified via email if they are invited to audition a second time live in front of the admissions panel. The Knapps both applied to eight schools, four of which were the same, consisting of both conservatories and traditional colleges with strong music programs.

Amina and Daniel Knapp performing together.


photo courtesy of Amina Knapp

College application season is already overwhelming for most students, but the Knapps are still faced with some intense challenges trying to maintain their busy schedules. Both students juggle Mounds View coursework, chamber music programs, youth orchestra rehearsals, practicing their audition pieces and frequently flying out for on-campus college auditions. “It’s just a lot of commitments to complete at such high levels, but it’s hard to do when you need to focus on what you’re going to be doing for the next four years of your life,” Amina said. As they approach the height of audition season, the twins focus on preparing their music and catching up on missed work, while continuing to notify

Will Sacay pictured wearing a Supreme x CDG box logo. photo courtesy of Will Sacay


“Taking a shortcut to learning” by Elisa Guo and Zige Wang staff reporters

In a 2012 New York Times article, leading researcher on cheating by Amy Binder Donald L. McCabe said, “There have always been staff reporter struggling students who According to The Student Experience Project published by TeamWorks International in 2018, 94% of the 86 cheat to survive, but more Mounds View students polled either “agreed strongly” or “agreed somewhat” that “they feel a lot of pressure t and more, there are stusucceed.” This pressure can stem from many different sources, including family members and other studen dents at the top who cheat to but the study found that the greatest source of pressure is most commonly the students themselves. thrive.” The willingness to In an academically rigorous environment like Mounds View, pressure to succeed — in high scho take shortcuts and break rules college and life — can drive students to present a peer’s work as their own or utilize banned materia when it comes to academic a test in pursuit of a higher score and a better chance at a top-tier college admittance. success has not changed in Although college applications primarily affect the futures of students, parents are often eq the eight years since this arinvested in the process, and may indirectly influence students to cheat. “The pressure fro ticle was published, if last year’s parents is not just, ‘get good grades,’ but also, ‘you need to go to a good school, so you n college admissions scandal is any get grades in this,’” said math teacher Leah Higginbotham. “They don’t want to disappoi proof. In fact, this behavior is even parents, their friends, their teacher, any of that.” This stress can cause students to f reflected at Mounds View. college admissions hinge on every last decimal point of a GPA, which can sometim Many students have witnessed or down to mere points in each class. heard of various methods of cheating to Maya Strike, 12, agreed. “A lot of [cheating] is just the pressure they’re get attest to this. “[Cheating is done] mostly outside sources to achieve good grades or internal pressure,” Strike said. “P with phones,” said Ryan Hill, 12. “It’s rebacked into a corner,” like their only path to success is through cheating. ally easy to look over people’s shoulders, students often cheat “because they’re afraid to fail,” said Jason Steinberg too, but especially for kids who sit in the back Science teacher Mark Johnson offers a different perspective: The and for teachers who don’t care as much, it’s cheat has to do with one’s integrity. “I’m sure in many cases it’s due pretty easy to just pull out your phone, Google a putting pressure on themselves, their parents putting pressure on th question [and] get an answer.” sure of college applications, just societal pressures, but I don’t Students also cheat by writing answers or blame it all on that. I’m sure that’s, at least to students, the notes on different surfaces. Jason Steinberg, 11, has but I’ve always believed that integrity is what you do when seen students writing on desks or sheets of paper, watching.” Johnson continued, “If you’re a person of int while Sam Kettlehut, 9, says some students write inyou’re 15 or 50, you don’t need somebody else to tell y formation on their arms. is bad.” Another common method of cheating is asking peers If students are struggling in a subject or unsu who have already taken a test for test questions or answers. to learn, they might turn to cheating as a safety “I do think that people tend to talk about [a] test after they’ve don’t feel like they can actually do it, so they taken it, and then people that haven’t taken it [have] an advanoption is to cheat,” Higginbotham said. “And tage,” said Maya Strike, 12. “Whether that’s intentional or unIt’s like they don’t have enough confidenc intentional, I think that would be the biggest source of cheating.” really understand that they really can.” To counter cheating, teachers implement policies in their In other situations, the decision t classrooms that prevent academic dishonesty from happening in the apathy toward the subject. Accordi first place. Biology teacher Mark Johnson says he clearly communistudents cheat because they do no cates his expectations regarding cheating to students at the beginning and are not motivated to study of each semester. “It’s not okay to [cheat], and I don’t want them to cheating as a way to earn a g think that that’s an acceptable behavior in high school or beyond to [do] ting extra effort into stu what I call ‘taking a shortcut to learning,’” Johnson said. don’t have time or don’t Like Johnson, French teacher Christopher Mester talks to his students learn the material, so t about his perspective on cheating. “I say, ‘there’s really not much of a point Higginbotham said. in cheating when you can relearn and retake something,’” Mester said. “My Although se policy [is] I tell students, [based] on the assignment, what’s expected as far as arise from aca what they can and can’t do.” less of the s Besides openly talking about academic dishonesty with students, teachers use the inciden different tactics during testing to keep students from cheating. “I have dividers up; students, I move kids around the room and separate them as much as possible,” Johnson said. fect. “ “I’m watching much of what they’re doing.” a ba Mester and math teacher Leah Higginbotham distribute different versions of quizwa zes and tests to students to deter them from copying answers off another student’s exam. “That’s when I’ve really been able to tell if someone copies the answers from a person next to them,” Mester said. Even with these rules in place, severe cheating situations still occur. Higginbotham says that, about eight or more years ago, one of her students had the answers to a quiz that was a different version from the one she was given. “It was pretty straightforward when I met with the parents [to say], ‘Hey, it’s pretty clear from looking at these two [quizzes] that you’ll see that she [cheated],’” Higginbotham said. Another incident involves Higginbotham’s husband, a math teacher at Champlin Park High School, who once dealt with a serious circumstance involving multiple students. “Some kids were taking pictures of tests and sharing them [in a group text]. [Teachers] could go back and see that consistently these students all had very, very similar answers for those multiple-choice tests [in several different classes],” Higginbotham said. Because these students had been cheating for the entire trimester, none of them received a final grade. Ryan Hill, 12 Ultimately, teachers just want students to be sincere. “I hope [students] will just try to do their best,” Johnson said. “Just do your best, and do it honestly.”

“People feel backed into a corner”

“It’s really easy to look over people’s shoulders, too, but especially for kids who sit in the back and for teachers who don’t care as much, it’s pretty easy to just pull out your phone, Google a question [and] get an answer.”

65 to nts,

“The integrity of the whole assessment is lost” by Isabel Newhouse staff reporter

“If you’re a person of integrity, whether you’re 15 or 50, you don’t need somebody else to tell you that cheating is bad.”

ool, al on

qually om the need to int their feel like mes come

tting from People feel . Similarly, g, 11. e decision to to [students] hem, the prest ever want to e main reason, nobody else is tegrity, whether you that cheating

ure of their ability y net. “[Students] feel like their only d that’s the sad part. ce in themselves to

to cheat results from ing to Ryan Hill, 12, ot care about the class y the content. They see good grade without putudying. “[The students] want to take the time to they find an ‘easier way,’” . erious consequences can ademic dishonesty regardstudent’s reasoning behind nt, teachers recognize that , like all people, are imper“Even a great kid can make ad decision,” Johnson said. “I ant to help them learn from that bad decision, but part of that is me following through on the consequences associated with such a decision.”

biology teacher Mark Johnson

MMounds View has specific procedures in place to address academic dishonesty. The school follows a system that increases in severity as a student accumulates transgressions throughout their four years at Mounds View. Consequences may vary depending on the situation and may include a “warning, detention, [retaking] the assignment, loss of credit on the assignment/assessment, in-school suspension, loss of credit in the course, and/or loss of activities privileges,” according to the student handbook. Despite these ramifications, cheating still occurs. This year, Bethany DeCent, Mounds View’s administrative intern and former English teacher, has joined the administration to handle student discipline. According to DeCent, only a handful of academic dishonesty cases have come up so far this school year, none of which were deemed severe. “I’ve only dealt with students who have had a first offense or their first time,” DeCent said. “For the most part, [discipline] has only been just talking with the students and also making the partnership with the teacher, as well as bringing in the parent.” Associate Principal Gregory Martin walks through the procedure administration takes when dealing with a case of academic dishonesty: “Usually, the teacher will just talk to the student, learn more about the situation, and ask why [the student] potentially did that. [The teacher] would let us know, and then we would notify parents,” Martin said. DeCent says that creating a variety of coursework for students gives them more freedom to do what they feel most comfortable with, which is better than students grudgingly doing assessments that make them want to cheat to get out of the assignment. “From an English teacher perspective specifically, when there is student choice in writing assignments, I think that does help them to be perhaps be more creative,” DeCent said. “I do feel that a lot of communication and regular check-ins throughout the process [of learning] for students really helps where they don’t get to the point where they feel like they need to do something like [cheating]. I feel like our teachers are really great in giving that extra support [to students].” The administration puts these consequences in place for multiple reasons. Martin emphasizes how this discipline also teaches students lessons about universal values: “Academic dishonesty [discipline] is more so to teach people the importance of being honest and the integrity behind your own work than it is of the hammer of a consequence,” Martin said. According to Martin, when a student fails to show academic integrity, they strip the value of taking the assessment altogether. “Teachers spend a ton of time developing these assessments, and if people take pictures of them or steal them and then fill them out, the integrity of the whole assessment is lost,” Martin said. Aligning with the school’s goal of preparing students for life after high school, discipline is meant to teach students valuable lessons about work ethic. “If you cheat your way through high school, you’re going to get to college and have to [cheat] there,” Martin said. “Or if you cheat your way through high school and college, you’re going to get to the real world and you need to be able to display those skills.”

“Teachers spend a ton of time developing these assessments, and if people take pictures of them or steal them and then fill them out, the integrity of the whole assessment is lost.” Associate Principal Gregory Martin



Friday, Februrary 14, 2020

Putting study hours to good use by Madeline Edgar staff reporter Study hours — more commonly known as “free hours” — have been a part of students’ high school schedules for years. Allotting in-school time for students to manage homework, college applications and stress has become a staple in many schools, with Mounds View included. With the rise in popularity of online and hybrid classes, the number of students settled in the library with a laptop and a textbook grows every year. But beyond these non-traditional courses, there are also some students who are set to meet their graduation requirements, opening a slot in their schedule. However, the restrictions Mounds View places on study hours minimize the benefits they offer, undermining the positive intentions of administrators seeking to improve student life and academic stability. Free hours are open exclusively to seniors who are on track to graduate, but students can have only one a semester and must have a minimum of five classes. While some exceptions are made for juniors, they are rare and must be specially requested. Otherwise, six classes are required for all grades. While online and hybrid courses allow for learning outside of the traditional classroom, most Mounds View students are restricted to a full day of in-class activities. These restrictions are detrimental to the mental health, academic success and general well-being of students. By preventing schedule flexibility, Mounds View only exacerbates the stress its students face. The ability for a wider range of students to have a study hour becomes apparent when I examine the benefits of these open periods. Study hours secure a consistent hour of choice, ensuring that there is a designated time for students to focus on important work that may have otherwise slipped between the cracks of work, extracurriculars and personal life. With the time commitment that many students have, after-school work time is heavily reduced, forcing students

to either push into the late hours of the night or fall behind on their schoolwork. When this lack of availability is compounded with difficult classes, AP workloads, work and responsibilities outside of school, students find themselves swamped in due dates that seem impossible. However, a study hour can turn the stress students face on its head. By securing less than an hour of uninterrupted free time, students can knock out readings, worksheets, projects and everything in between, leaving their after-school hours exclusively to extracurriculars and much-needed mental breaks. As the years go on and the rigor of classes increases, the need for study hours becomes more apparent. Many upperclassmen will begin to take on more college-level classes, work shifts and personal responsibilities, as well as the added weight of standardized tests and college applications. The infamous stress of junior year is no joke; the overall pressure of school is something educational bodies are acknowledging more often, which seems to correlate to a rise in flexible schedules. Although study hours would have been nearly unheard of in the past, high schools across the nation are making policy changes that allow their students to explore alternative learning opportunities and less intensive school days with the hope that a less stressful school experience will help steer their student bodies away from the

exploding teenage mental health crisis. This crisis of stress has been widely reported on by reputable institutions around the country. A study conducted by New York University found that 49% of all high school students were extremely stressed on a day-to-day basis, with schoolwork, grades, post-graduation plans and familial expectations as the most significant contributors. Students reported feeling as though “they were asked to work as hard as adults, or even harder, with little time left for relaxation or creativity.” This is certainly true for Mounds View students, evidenced by Mounds View’s average 2018 ACT composite score of 25.6 (compared to the national average of 21), 96% graduation rate and the sheer number of students who take AP classes. The stress of Mounds View is undeniable, so why are there such tight restrictions on something that is objectively beneficial to students’ mental health and academic success? Why isn’t Mounds View

infographic by Michael Hu

taking steps towards schedule flexibility? While some may claim that study hours are an excuse for students to mess around and use school hours to relax, the library is filled with students working and quietly socializing throughout the day, and the number of students to be found at school during their study hours pacifies any fears that open hours become a means to evade attendance and break the closed campus policy. Mounds View students tend to be incredibly devoted to their school work, so study hours have been and are excellent ways for this devotion to be secured despite students’ busy lives and growing responsibilities beyond the classroom. Yet Mounds View has been unwavering in its strict study hour regulations. In order to lessen the negative effects of the extreme workload students face both in and outside school, Mounds View should make study hours more accessible to upperclassmen, perhaps even underclassmen who are set to graduate. By doing so, Mounds View will be taking a vital step towards improving student support and well-being. illustration by Jenna Stellmack

Equal grades for unequal effort by Arthur Nghiem staff reporter Though some may enjoy group projects in school and others may despise them, everyone can agree that the common method for grading them fails. Most teachers at Mounds View grade group projects by giving every member of the group the same grade, regardless of individual contribution. This system does not accurately represent each student’s learning, nor does it account for the fact that work is almost always split unevenly in group projects. Teachers should continue to assign group work, but should instead grade on an individual basis. Grades exist to reflect how well students understand the course content, but group grades do not fulfill that function. At best, they represent the group’s overall level of understanding, but are still not necessarily representative of each individual. As a result, two students who understand the material sufficiently enough would receive different grades

depending on the other group members’ hindrance. The students’ grades would no longer correspond with their individual achievements, which defeats the purpose of grading student work in the first place. Group grading also curbs student learning. Since group grades do not reflect individual understanding, they do not provide students with useful feedback on their performance. Group grading also generally leads to an unequal distribution of work, with stronger members of the team doing the vast majority of the work. Students know which members of the group can complete the work the easiest, so teams naturally give all of the work to those members while the rest of the group slacks off. This inequality unfairly burdens members who have to carry the team, and it also deprives less capable members of an opportunity to improve their skills and knowledge. Assigning grades individually would solve this problem. Some may argue that group grad-

ing promotes collaborative skills such as managing conflict and delegating responsibilities. These skills will undoubtedly remain vital for students as they enter the workplace in the future, but teachers can still foster these skills through group work even if grading is ultimately individual. In addition, group grading does not necessarily encourage collaboration. As Susan M. Brookhart, an independent educational consultant and Ph.D. in educational research and evaluation, states in her book “Grading and Group Work”: “Group grades can also mean that some students in a group feel unwarranted pressure to compensate for fellow group members who either won’t or can’t do good work. These students may find it easier to just do the work for their noncontributing groupmates instead of helping or reasoning with them.” In this way, group members can avoid collaborating with other group members even when the group is graded as a whole. Individual grading would foster more genuine col-

laboration since students can still assist their teammates without feeling obligated to complete the work for them. All in all, teachers can choose from a variety of alternative grading methods for group work, instead of giving everyone in the group the same grade. They can mandate that each student write an individual report based on their involvement in the project, then grade individually based on those reports. They can also include questions that closely reference the group project on examinations, which would discourage slacking. Finally, each student can complete a specified part of the project, so that the teacher can simply grade each individual’s contribution; a method that would not require additional effort on the teacher’s part. All of these alternatives would be preferable over group grading — a practice that often disregards hard work and inhibits actual learning.


Friday, February 14, 2020

What is the language of love? by Isabelle Schrab staff reporter Every year on Valentine’s Day, couples get together and go on dates where they exchange gifts. Some would hope to receive sentimental gifts while others wish to receive storebought gifts. Although store-bought gifts might be the easier choice, some people like to give and receive sentimental gifts that the other person will connect with emotionally. Sentimental gifts convey a stronger message to the person receiving the gift, making them better for Valentine’s Day. In addition, the receiver can tell how much consideration went into the gift based on the overall quality of the gift. For example, when someone receives a handwritten note, he or she usually appreciates that action more than something pre-written and mass-produced The main reason why sentimental gifts are better is that they usually hold a special meaning that only the couple understands. When giving

someone a gift, it usually feels better when the person can connect with the gift and relate to what they have received. While buying a gift that costs a hefty amount might come across as genuine, it takes more effort and love to present a gift that is truly heartfelt; by physically making a gift, it can show how much someone values the relationship. For example, a friend of mine created a map of the stars from the night her boyfriend first asked her out. This gift is personalized to their relationship and to his interests; whenever he looks at this gift, he will be reminded of the beginning of their relationship and all the reasons he fell for her. In contrast, monetary gifts do not show how much you love the person; they represent how much money you care to spend on a person or how much money you have. A heartfelt gift shows your significant other how much you love them in a more emotionally expressive way. Although some may prefer to receive an expensive gift on other spe-

cial occasions, Valentine’s Day has always centered around the thought behind the gift as opposed to how much it sets back your bank account. Traditional gifts for Valentine’s Day usually include cute notes and cards expressing love toward the other person. Gifters can make homemade gifts with pictures, words and memories that express how much they love someone, which is something that cannot be bought at the store. This way, no one else receives the same gift as you, which is why it is better than a monetary gift. Overall, heartfelt and sentimental gifts are better than store-bought gifts. They come with a greater level of sincerity and personalization that is rarely found in monetary gifts. Next time you find yourself stumped over what to get your significant other for Valentine’s Day, remember that you do not have to break the bank to show your significant other how much you appreciate them.


Top 3 sentimental gifts 1. A jar of reasons why you love them 2. A personalized photo book 3. Homemade baked goods

“I don’t want a macaroni necklace.” -Jakob Sprague, 11 vs. “A cute bracelet and brownies!! Date me.” -Taylor Dullum, 11 information compiled by Sienna Wood and Isabelle Schrab

“Homemade gifts are kind of cheap and weird.” -Caleb Laberge, 11


“It’s something you can’t buy and it means more on a personal level.” -Margaret Anderson, 11 by Sienna Wood staff reporter Every time Feb. 14 rolls around, people are faced with the difficult decision of deciding what to give their loved ones on Valentine’s Day. Storebought gifts are much more valuable because they are more useful, while also having the additional level of ease through exchanges and returns. Homemade gifts cause people to feel obligated to keep them since they are seen as holding more sentimental value, even if they serve no purpose. For example, if you receive a tacky, badly-knitted hat from your significant other you may feel obligated to wear it even though it is not practical. This guilts people into keeping unnecessary possessions because the person receiving the gift most likely cares for the giver. These gifts pile up in storage

closets, as the recipient does not want to seem ungrateful whereas if someone is not using a purchased gift they can be returned, sold or even donated. This problem is less common with purchased gifts because the person buying the present wants their money to go to practical use. They will be reluctant to buy an expensive gift for purely entertainment purposes. Since money is being spent on the gift, more thought will go into how, and if, it will be useful for the receiver. It is also important that storebought gifts can be exchanged. This ensures that the person receiving the gift will get something that he or she will use and appreciate. If receivers do not like the gift, they will feel a wave of relief as they are handed the gift receipt and can be appreciative of the gesture. Finally, purchased gifts are not

Viewer Staff 2019-2020


Michael Gennaro Leon Wang Jenna Stellmack Alissa Zhao Alissa Zhao Janae Lee Jenna Stellmack Angela Larson, Janae Lee Molly Shwiff Alissa Zhao

necessarily more expensive than sentimental gifts. Store-bought gifts can be bought on sale or even in thrift stores and second-hand stores. Sentimental gifts are often homemade and are often not worth the effort. In addition, they are not necessarily cheaper and easier as they require ample materials, time, effort and talent, which can be stressful as not everyone is blessed with creative talents. However, everyone can stop by a store and pick up a present. Purchased gifts can hold sentimental value because the gift giver will usually spend ample time considering what is the best present to purchase. This upcoming Valentine’s Day, make sure to buy your significant other a present that comes with a receipt.

graphic from

Top 3 store-bought gifts 1. Jewelry 2. Weighted blanket & matching PJs 3. Eternity rose


Jenna Stellmack, Natalie Nemes Michael Hu Alec Nelson Brock Nelson Arfa Ali Jenna Stellmack David Ostrom Sauk Centre Publishing

Arfa Ali, Amy Binder, Morgan Dalton, Madeline Edgar, Savannah Guiang, Elisa Guo, Sterling Hills, Madeline Jepko, Irene Lampredi, Josie Mackenthun, Ellis Maloney, Isabel Newhouse, Arthur Nghiem, Darah Ostrom, Isabelle Schrab, Yatharth Sharma, Kate Spence, Joseph Steil, Nicholas Stenlund, Isaac Vo, Hanzu Vu-Tran, Zige Wang, Katelyn Welle, Sienna Wood, Junha Yoo,

Johnny Yue

Mounds View High School ‌• 1900 Lake Valentine Rd. Arden Hills, MN 55112 •‌ • @mvviewer •


Arts & Entertainment

friday, february 14, 2020

Potluck: new Rosedale food court Nordic Waffles O Bāchan by Junha Yoo staff reporter

Nordic Waffles originated when founder Stine Aasland recognized that the Norwegian tradition of selling waffles in convenience stores did not allow for customers to settle down and fill up. Aasland developed a new waffle batter and established her waffle empire by selling Nordic Waffles programs to retailers. She was even named the “Female Entrepreneur of the Year” in 2010 by Norway. Since then, the chain has expanded to the US and is part of the new Rosedale food court, Potluck. Located near the entrance of Potluck, the restaurant consists of a small counter surrounding the entire kitchen, creating an open environment where customers can watch their food being made right in front of them. Expect a casual interaction with workers and quick service, about four minutes per waffle. The chain offers both savory and sweet flavors and only serves waffles outside of bottled drinks. The menu has nine different waffles, each costing around $6, including the Salmon, Bacon Mac and Cheese, Havarti and Wild Mushrooms, Berries and Cream and S’Mores. The Maple Bacon Benedict unsurprisingly consists of maple bacon, Hollandaise sauce and a cooked egg all wrapped up in a waffle. The sweetness of the maple bacon complements the Hollandaise sauce as it brings the saltiness of contents back to the natural sweetness of the waffle. The Havarti and Wild Mushrooms with honey and truffle dust perfectly blend with the cheese and waffle thanks to the honey drizzled over top allowing for a sweet yet savory taste.

Burger Dive by Hanzu Vu-tran staff reporter

The Potluck at Rosedale Center opened in November of 2019 and houses many food vendors including Burger Dive. The menu was created by Chef Nick O’Leary, who worked in the kitchen of an iconic Twin Cities dive bar — a disreputable bar or pub. His menu consists of delicious burgers and bar snacks. At the Rosedale Center location, the menu features seven burgers, four sides and five snacks. I ordered the Nacho Burger and a side of fries. The burger was $11 and the fries were $5. The prices were not bad, based on the portions received. For $5, customers receive a fair amount of fries and for $11, a regular-sized burger. The Nacho Burger had guacamole, tortilla chips, cheese, tomato and jalapeno, but the individual components were not spread out throughout the burger, and it was all concentrated in one place. The burger tasted rather burnt, which overwhelmed the flavor of the burger. The flavor was there, but it was rather underwhelming. The dryness of the burger also played a part in it not being enjoyable. The fries, however, were close to perfect, exceeding my expectations. They had a perfect balance of seasoning and a satisfying crunch to each bite. Overall, Burger Dive provides customers with a below-average meal. The fries were exceptionally good, but the main focus was on the burger, and it failed to meet expectations. It also failed to meet the basic criteria of a decent

The S’more waffle, a recreation of the classic campfire snack, offers the sweet taste of chocolate and marshmallows without the gooey mess that usually follows. They have accomplished this by using Nutella over the chocolate bar and refraining from melting the marshmallows. The softness of the waffle contrasts the graham crumbles on the inside, and the use of Nutella and mini marshmallows ensures that the waffle tastes as close to its campfire original as possible A common downside among all of the waffles is the sogginess that develops quickly after serving. This becomes especially prevalent in the Bacon Mac and Cheese, such that it gets served in a floppy and especially soft state. Nordic Waffles only offers a few waffles; however, the uniqueness of each waffle allows for almost everyone to find a tasty snack to enjoy. The waffles are a great way to get a quick meal while shopping, and shoppers should not want to compromise taste for time.

Variety of waffles (above). photo courtesy of Junha Yoo

The Verdict

8/10 burger — having good flavor and lots of juice. Price-wise, Burger Dive was fair, making it affordable for high school students. However, if you are looking for a quality burger, Burger Dive is not the place. Open on Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Burger Dive does not satisfy expectations.

The Nacho Burger (above) accompanied by a of side fries (below).

photos courtesy of Hanzu Vu-tran

The Verdict


by Savannah Guiang staff reporter

O Bāchan noodles and chicken, a build your own ramen restaurant, is one of many merchants in the new Potluck food hall at the Rosedale Center. On November 12, 2019, Chef Justin Sutherland opened the establishment and called it O Bāchan which means “grandmother” in Japanese. Since Sutherland’s grandma taught him how to cook, he named his restaurant this in honor of her. The Minnesota-based food hall has many different food options, but O Bāchan is unique. There is a wide-variety of ingredients to choose from including miso, tonkatsu or shiitake broth and homemade soba, udon or ramen noodles. For protein, they offer Japanese fried chicken, pork belly or tofu. The standard toppings for every ramen bowl include bamboo, scallions, nori, half an egg and sesame seeds. I ordered shiitake broth with ramen noodles and Japanese fried chicken from the rather straightforward menu. The single bowl of ramen set me back $12, and I thought the $2.50 for a can of pop was a little outrageous. Customers can sit anywhere they want in the food court and pick up their meal at the counter when it is ready. As I received my ramen from a friendly employee after seven minutes of waiting, I could immediately tell that a lot of effort was put into it; the egg, nori, bamboo and chicken were carefully arranged on top of the noodles. The presentation was excellent but upon eating, I found that the dish had many unfavorable qualities. I initially enjoyed all of the toppings except for

Chickpea by Darah Ostrom staff reporter

The Chickpea Hummus Bar is a goto, build-your-own meal restaurant. The walk-up bar and fast-casual style produce a modern feel and offer a healthier fast food option. The only location for this restaurant is in the new Rosedale Mall food court, which provides a variety of different options for eating out. Their menu consists of a hummus bowl, starting at a price of $10, with a choice between three different types of hummus: original, spinach and herbs or red pepper. In addition, you can select up to three toppings including feta, roasted red peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers and more. Any other toppings are an additional $1. Finally, they top it off with olive oil, chickpeas, paprika and parsley to create the perfect combination of flavors. The restaurant also offers a choice between veggie sticks, pita chips or pita bread for dipping and provides a variety of different salads as well. The customer service, even for a grab-and-go style restaurant, was top notch. I went to the food court at 8:40 p.m., and I was given excellent service despite the fact that they were closing in 20 minutes. When the woman realized I was there, she immediately dropped what she was doing to serve me. I ordered the original hummus topped with feta, tomatoes and roasted carrots along with warm pita bread. The hummus was creamy and offered a smooth spreading consistency, while the olive oil and paprika added a delicious touch of pungency. The feta cheese

the egg. Despite appearing pleasant at first, it was distasteful and the yolk had an unappealing texture. Some may like the taste of a soy-marinated egg, but I certainly did not. However, nothing was as bad as the chicken. It was greasy with a good portion of fat still on it. Not to mention, halfway through eating, the breading became quite soggy. Maybe it would be better to choose pork belly or tofu. That being said, I liked the noodles as they were cooked wonderfully, making it apparent that they were homemade, and the shiitake broth, which had good flavor but was excessively salty. Overall, the negatives unquestionably outweighed the positives, and even though my meal was filling, I was not satisfied. Open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., O Bāchan was not worth the price, but nevertheless, it is a convenient place to stop after shopping at the mall.

Shiitake broth with ramen noodles and Japenese fried chicken (above). photo courtesy of Savannah Guiang

The Verdict

3/10 complimented the hummus nicely and the carrots were soft, chewy and juicy. The tomatoes were finely diced and fresh. There was a perfect blend of every topping in each bite and the chickpeas added a nice crunch. The pita bread was warm and soft in the center and topped with the perfect blend of spices. Despite the flavorful taste of the meal, there were a few downsides. For one, the hummus-to-bread ratio was a bit out of proportion. Even though I had been scooping on huge spoonfuls of hummus, there was too much left over after I had finished eating my bread. Another negative aspect was the price. $10 for a meal consisting of just hummus and pita bread is simply too much, especially since I did not end up eating all of the hummus anyways. Overall, I was surprisingly pleased with the meal and my experience eating at the food court. One thing to keep in mind is that even though it may look like a small meal, the hummus was filling. I found this restaurant particularly interesting because I had never seen or eaten at a place quite like it before, but I think it is an excellent concept. Chickpea offers a healthy alternative over anything else in the food court, but if you are not a hummus fan, this place is not for you.

The Verdict


Playing through pain friday. February 14, 2020

by Josie Mackenthum staff reporter Maiah Robert, 12, is easily noticed in any Mounds View girls varsity hockey game due to her overall high skill and prowess on the ice, which stems back to kindergarten. Her father, a former player himself, ignited her love for the sport. “My dad used to play, so he just had me and my siblings all start playing when we were younger, and then I just kind of liked it and then carried it on until now,” Robert said. However, in fifth grade, she was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease, a disease characterized by stomach cramps and fatigue. While the exact cause is unknown, Crohn’s makes the immune system attack beneficial intestine microbes, causing inflammation. Despite this, Robert refused to let her diagnosis prevent her from playing. “When I first got diagnosed it would hurt when I would skate a lot, and I couldn’t really skate a ton,” Robert said. But after a few years, she has learned how to minimize this, especially by eating the right foods. Robert makes sure to follow the high-calorie, high-protein diet encouraged by experts to maintain her high level of play on the ice. “I also have

to make sure I ate the right foods otherwise it’s going to hurt while I’m playing,” Robert said. Throughout her hockey career, both her coaches and teammates have provided support and understanding. “They [her coaches] let me do whatever I know I need to do,” Robert said as she spoke about managing Crohn’s. When it comes to her fellow teammates, the girls are some of her closest friends on and off the ice. While the group changes every year as seniors graduate, the team still remains a big part of her social life. As captain this year, Robert continues to form friendships through hockey. Besides making friends, Robert bonds with her sister, Raelyn, through the sport. She often looks toward her older sister for advice and guidance. “She also plays hockey and she’s two years older than me so I’ve kind of followed in her footsteps my whole life and then just done what she did,” Robert said. After this hockey season, she plans to focus on lacrosse, her preferred sport, saying she is finished with hockey. “I’ll play lacrosse but I don’t think I’ll play hockey anymore,” Robert said. While Crohn’s has no cure and will continue to im-

by Morgan Dalton staff reporter

in our conference, so it creates a lot more intensity,” Galvin said. “There’s no doubt about it.” According to multiple students in attendance, the game was so intense that the boards around the rink almost unhinged from fans shaking them. Physical education teacher and Head Football Coach Aaron Moberg agrees that the rivalry brings an extra level of excitement to games. “Both teams usually bring their best game, which makes for a highly competitive game,” Moberg said. “It’s usually an awesome crowd, [and] many people who usually do not come watch will come out to see the Mustangs and Knights compete.” Staff are not the only supporters of the intra-district opposition; student athletes also see it as a chance to strive for their best. “I personally love the rivalry,” said hockey player Raegan Valois, 10. “I think it pushes everyone to do their best because it’s Irondale and no one wants to lose to them.” Another factor that contributes to the more gripping games is that many of the involved students have long histories of playing against each other. “One of the reasons it is a fun rivalry is the proximity between

Revived rivals Irondale and Mounds View have rivaled one another for as long as students and teachers remember. Due to the adjacency of the schools and the shared district identity, it is no wonder that most students and staff do not recall a specific event that led to this conflict’s origin. Activities Director James Galvin said the competition stems from the addition of Irondale to the district in 1967 and has recently been reignited by the entrance of Irondale into the Suburban East Conference, making this the first school year since the mid-1990s that Mounds View and Irondale will regularly play each other in conference games. This means that the two schools have begun competing in all sports on a more regular basis, with the exception of football. So far, the increased antagonism between Irondale and Mounds View has increased student participation both on and off the field. “We played Irondale in hockey a couple weeks ago and the crowd was three times bigger than it was the previous week for another game



pact her, Robert will not let it stop her from living her life however she chooses to. She also wants others to know that Crohn’s affects everyone in a unique way, and it is important to make the best of any situation. “It’s different for every person so what I experienced will be different for the next person and the next,” Robert said.

Maiah Robert (above) takes the puck up in a big game. Photo courtesy of Maiah Robert

the two schools,” Moberg said. “Many of our athletes grow up playing with or competing against one another throughout youth sports.” This previous experience and familiarity can add an extra dimension to the games as it connects athletes on different levels. “Our kids all know each other,” Galvin said. “They play youth sports together, they went to school together, they live in the same communities.” This combination of experience and strong competition helps ensure games are highly engaging. Despite the competition, the two schools hold one another in high regard. “There is a high amount of mutual respect between both schools,” Moberg said. “Having worked at Irondale and coached there as well, I have nothing but great things to say about the teachers, coaches and students. The student body from both schools do a great job of pulling for their teams, yet doing it in a respectful manner.” To keep up with this friendly rivalry, come out and support boys and girls basketball on Friday, Feb. 21, at Irondale.

In Memoriam...

The world recently lost a legendary member of the basketball community, Kobe Bryant. A helicopter crash tragically cut his life short at 41 years old on Jan. 26, along with eight other people, one being his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna.Without a doubt, Bryant left behind a legacy on the court, winning five NBA titles and making it to the NBA All-Star Game an astounding 18 times. Furthermore, he also left behind a legacy off the court, winning an Oscar for his short film “Dear Basketball” and starting his own charity, the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation, which supports education and cultural opportunities for kids in need, while also encouraging them to participate in sports. Through all of this, he strived to be the best father during his busy career by going to as many of his daughters’ basketball games as possible. Also known for his relentless work ethic, Bryant inspired millions to work for what they wished to achieve in their lives. “Mamba mentality” was a phrase often used by Bryant and many of his fans. It is a simple phrase, yet was used by numerous NBA players in the wake of his death.When asked what it means, Bryant did not hesitate with his response. “It means to be able to constantly try to be the best version of yourself,” Bryant said. “That’s what the mentality is.” Bryant’s love for the game and his positive attitude inspired many people across the world, and his legacy lives on in the next generation of basketball players.

Illustration by Jenna Stellmack


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