Northwood High School • Pittsboro, N.C.
OMNISCIENT - THE NORTHWOOD -
(om-nish-ent) adj.: having infinite knowledge and awareness
Students face tough college competition By Austin Moody Staff Writer
Over the past 20 years, the importance of a college education has been becoming a more stressed part of life. Fewer and fewer employers are hiring individuals without college degrees. And as more people begin to perceive this, more people begin to apply to college, which causes increased competition. “Twenty years ago our statistics for going to college were not as high as they are now,” said Sonia Logan, a guidance counselor at Northwood. “Businesses, communities and companies want their students to have high school diplomas, and they want them to have a post graduate education.” One reason that more employers are requiring college degrees is that technology is beginning to soak more and more into work environments. Jobs are beginning to require more technological instruction, making education a necessary prerequisite for many American workers. “[College is] where you are going to get a
see COLLEGE page 3
November 18, 2011 • Volume 5 • Issue 2
What can be said in 140 characters? By Emily Brooks Staff Writer
Twitter comes to Northwood
Once upon a time, MySpace ruled the lives of teenage students, then Facebook did, and now another rapidly growing social network, Twitter, rules lives. Twitter is a micro blogging service that allows users to send and read posts known as “tweets.” The site got its start in 2006 by a group of businessmen who wanted to create a program where users would be able to inform others about what is going on through a short SMS message. Twitter users can create an account, like a screen name, which enables them to be able to “tweet” and “follow” others. These tweets consist of fewer than 140 character messages with the purpose to update followers on daily activities. Followers are the people who are able to read a user’s tweets.
Though Facebook seems to have been the social network of choice for most of Northwood, many students are now turning to Twitter. “Facebook has changed so much and it was getting annoying,” said junior Donya Grissett. “Twitter is just fun because people Caroline Schneider/The Omniscient talk about more TWITTER is becoming more popular with students this year. on [Twitter] than they do on Kim Kardashian because they that Facebook has, like chain Facebook.” are famous. Some of their [statuses] such as ‘to be honSenior Gino LaManna sees tweets are interesting,” said est,’” said LaManna. Twitter as a new alternative to junior Ebone’ Rhodes. In addition to teenagers social networking. LaManna said that he enjoys around the world, many celebri“I’ve had a [Twitter] for ties are on Twitter, including following artists such as Mac about two months and it is betstars such as Lady Gaga, Oprah Miller and Wiz Khalifa. ter than Facebook because it and even Barack Obama. “[Their tweets] keep me doesn’t have all the excess junk see TWITTER page 4 “I follow Justin Bieber and
Military Relations at Northwood
Students and faculty discuss what it is like to have family overseas By Madison Roberts Staff Writer
senior Landis Barber to have his brother overseas, he says he values his brother’s happiness. “It’s not an easy experience but he enjoys “The only thing I heard from my dad was it, and as long as he’s happy, I’m happy,” that [my brother] got shot. I didn’t know Barber said. where; I didn’t know if he was okay.” Barber’s brother joined the Marines after Senior Lexie Chaney described her feelgraduating from Northwood. He had previings when she found out that her older brother, who was fighting overseas in Afghanistan, ously been deployed to Iraq twice and recently returned home from Afghanistan. was shot in the arm. Having a family member on active duty “I was flipping out… I was just out of my not only affects students as indimind,” Chaney said. viduals, but it can also drastically Having loved ones in varichange the relationships between ous branches of the military has family members. affected Northwood students and “I really don’t see [my brothfaculty in many different ways. er] that much and growing up “It sucks knowing that he’s it was just me and him against over there and fighting this war, the world pretty much,” Chaney but at the same time I’m really said. “When it comes to me and proud of him,” senior Catherine him, when we do talk, it’s still Anderson said of her older the same as when we were kids brother, Chris. but we don’t see much of each Catherine said that Chris, an other or have a chance to talk Army Reserves member who has so we kind of have a strained been in Afghanistan since Janurelationship.” ary, has missed out on important Social studies teacher Mary times in her life. Cox has also felt the effects of “On my birthday he wasn’t having a loved one overseas. Her there and we always think of things that he would enjoy but Photo courtesy of Catherine Anderson husband retired from the military he’s not here to enjoy them, so CHRIS ANDERSON opens a care package while overseas. see TROOPS page 4
it’s really hard,” Anderson said. Senior Brady Kelly, whose dad is overseas, recognized the impact of having a parental figure missing from his household. “It didn’t really affect me that much but it affected my little brother. He went through a little depression stage missing out on the parent being there,” Kelly said. “I kind of had to fill that role slightly so I knew he was being taken care of.” Although it has been a difficult time for
The Arts Education Foundation launched a program to bring professional artists to Northwood.
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MTV isn’t what it used to be. The Omniscient takes a look at the differences between MTV then and now.
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Accountability model change affects juniors By Caroline Schneider Editor-in-Chief
Starting next year, North Carolina schools will have a new accountability model where 30 percent of the school’s rating will be established by the juniors’ performance on a required ACT test. This mandatory ACT test will be provided by the state for all juniors to take for free, and will start next semester, although the effects on the new accountability model will not begin until next year. “The ACT supposedly is more aligned with the new common core essential standards, which is the new curriculum that the whole state is going to,” said Principal Chris Blice. This model is different from the previous one in that the school’s rating will be based less on EOC exams. Although the new model is supposedly a better measure of what schools are teaching, Blice recognizes that the new system may be inadequate. “I think there are pros and cons to everything [and] I have some pretty strong concerns,” said Blice. “The people who take the SAT are people who want to go
see ACT page 5
When Northwood’s sports seasons end, it doesn’t mean all athletes are done getting their favorite exercise.
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NHSAEF Fall Bazaar
The NHS Arts Education Foundation is hosting its Fall Bazaar Saturday (10 a.m. - 6 p.m.) to raise money for its annual scholarship fund. Over 25 vendors will be present in the drama room.
November 18, 2011
Madness begins Monday
Charger Madness will occur on Monday, Nov. 21 at 7p.m. to kick off the winter sports season. In addition to the student-faculty basketball game, spectators can find a 3-point shooting contest and dunk demonstration from the varsity basketball players. Admission is $1 for students and $3 for non-students.
Band finishes season strong
The band finished its season and won multiple first place awards. “Our work ethic improved drastically [since] the beginning of the season,” said senior Jackson Seagroves.
Photo courtesy of Jerry Richardson
Northwood senior becomes “Mr. Fix-It”
By Emily Brooks Staff Writer
own handy man. But Flaugher isn’t part of the staff, he is a student. The senior does a lot of odd “[I do] pretty much anything jobs around the school ranging that needs to be done,” said from cutting grass to wiring Hunter Flaugher, Northwood’s speakers in the auditorium. He also does electrical work that many other teenagers are not able to do. “I used to help my grandpa work; he was an alarm technician and an electrician. I would go to work with him and it just started coming to me,” said Flaugher. When Flaugher isn’t in class, he is running around from classroom to classroom fixing things. Taylor Maloch/ The Omniscient Theatre teacher Lori Carlin has Flaugher SENIOR HUNTER FLAUGHER adjusts as her student asthe lights at a rehearsal for Mirrors.
sistant during third period this semester. “[I first met Hunter] his freshman year when he was in Tech Theatre I,” Carlin said. “It was my old classroom and I still remember exactly where he sat and I could not stand him, he drove me nuts. He was just so [distracted], so active all the time. Then I had him the next semester during Tech Theatre II, and I remember looking at the list and I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, I can’t stand this kid.’ Well, I figured out if you put him to work, he’s amazing.” Carlin reflected on a time when Flaugher built a lift at home for the spring musical Into the Woods. The lift raised the chair into the air to create a magical effect. “Ever since then he has been my right hand,” said Carlin. “He’s made it possible for my program to advance; he has eliminated a tremendous amount of frustration. He has changed everything. He is just
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one of those once-in-a-lifetime students.” Northwood Athletic Director Jason Amy can list many things Hunter has done for him, including placing speakers for the softball team, moving speakers, doing a lot of wiring, hooking up amplifiers in the gym, digging post holes for the area in front of the field house that was recently renovated and anything else that needs to be done. “Anytime I need something done, [Flaugher] usually volunteers and helps out,” said Amy. Leah Smith, director of the dance department, sees a lot of Flaugher as he helps out with dance performances. “He’s got a talent that not a lot of people have where he can just look at a technical or electrical problem and know how to solve it, and that’s not something that is easily learned or can easily be taught; you just kind of have to know how to do it, and he just gets it, his brain
works that way,” said Smith. Apart from the work he does at school, Flaugher also has a business called “HF Services” where he does construction, grading and tractor work. As far as Flaugher’s plans for the future go, he is unsure if he wants to continue working with mechanics. “I just want to make a lot of money doing something,” Flaugher said with a smile. His teachers certainly see that potential. “I believe that Hunter will be a great asset to many companies in the future,” said Smith. “We’re going to fail him so we can keep him here with us.” Carlin agreed that Hunter will go far in life with whatever he does. “He is going to buy me a red, Audi Spyder one day; we already have that agreement. He’s going to be a great success,” said Carlin. “He is just a good person.”
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November 18, 2011
PASPort brings musician to NHS By Kaitlyn Mattiace Staff Writer The Northwood High School Arts Education Foundation recently held an event to kick off the Lecture Demonstration Series of PASPort: Professional Artist Series Portal, with a show from jazz musician, composer and educator Stanley Baird. “We’ve got to warm up a little bit so we’re going to play one or two songs, then we’ll talk about our musical journey to this point,” said Baird, as the audience hushed and the performance began. The show began with two long, fingersnapping jazz songs, Baird catching the audience’s attention with his saxophone. Baird then looked toward the audience and said, “Usually, we start off our show a little more dramatic than that. We’ll start it off like we usually do it.” Then the show really began, with a few upbeat, dramatic songs that got the audience’s toes tapping. After playing a few songs, Baird introduced his fellow musicians and told the audience how they all ended up together. “Most concerts that you go to, you can’t really talk to [the artists], but the one that they had [at Northwood] you could…it was open to discussion,” said junior Colin Murphy. Because they had just gotten back from Singapore, Baird explained, everyone was very tired. One wouldn’t have known, for the music was awake and upbeat. Baird went on to share stories about his pathway through life, and how he came to play along the likes of Gladys Knight, Kirk Whalum, Patti LaBelle, Najee, Richard Elliott and Donald Byrd. “He was a [school] band director for 30 years so I think some people might have learned, or I learned, that [for] those of us who go into education to teach, it can continue on after we retire. We can go on and
be the artist, and have time to produce our work,” said Leslie Burwell, art teacher and supporter of PASPort. PASPort aims to provide NHS students and the community with opportunities to attend and participate in lectures, programs, performances and events by talented professionals in the performing and visual arts. PASPort held two Zumba dance classes earlier in the semester as well. “If the Northwood students attend after school, I think the ones that are there will benefit from the enrichment of getting to talk to a person first-hand about their experiences in the arts,” said Burwell. Proceeds from PASPort events go toward scholarships from the NHSAEF, which has already given $20,000 in its history. Future plans for the PASPort series include two jazz vocalists, a Japanese brush painting class and a drama improvisation session. “I think that students that [don’t] see past art in a classroom versus art in the real world... might relate to the fact that these artists are coming in and providing them the experience and the knowledge,” said Burwell.
Kaitlyn Mattiace/ The Omniscient
STANLEY BAIRD played at NHS Nov. 1.
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Cheating and plagiarism are also growing lot of your technology training,” said DeLisa indicators of tension in the pursuit of college. Cohen, a career management teacher. “They “I think students cheat because they don’t are bringing it into high school, but employwant to fail,” said Logan. “They don’t want ers are going to want more than that because to disappoint, they don’t want to get the bad technology is helping with the global market; grade, they don’t want their GPA to drop, and it you’re going to have to be able to compete at a becomes an endless cycle.” technological level.” Principal Chris Blice also sees cheating as a As more people apply to college and the means students use to get ahead. competition becomes steeper, students are “There are always going to be people who finding more ways to push themselves ahead will see increased challenges as more justificaof the curve. tion to do things the wrong way,” said Blice. “College programs are no longer looking “I don’t know that there is really anything you for students to just graduate high school,” said can do about it. I think that we just have to deal Cohen. “They’re looking for that total student, with it and go on.” someone who has Some people do done volunteer work, see the competition community service and that colleges create for who is involved in their high school students school’s extracurricular as having advantages, activities, clubs, organidespite these negative zations and sports.” aspects. Northwood’s Students nowadays test scores have been have more pressure improving in almost from colleges to work every area over the harder and longer on past three years, which their schoolwork than Austin Moody/ The Omniscient Blice accredits to both past generations who COLLEGES ask for a lot from students. the success of students applied for the same and teachers, who are meeting the higher acaspots years ago. Whereas in 1990 there was demic standards that are being set for college an acceptance rate of 38.2 percent at UNC, bound students. the acceptance rate dropped to 32 percent by “I think our school is really competitive and 2010. UNC-Pembroke’s acceptance rate has been dropping even quicker, sliding from 86.4 it makes kids try harder to get better grades,” said senior Ethan Stubbs. percent to 75 percent from 2000-2010. This higher level of education that is One way students compete for these sought expected of modern day students is meant after spots is by loading up on increasingly to provide colleges with more prepared and prevalent honors and AP courses. competent learners. “There is so much pressure to get into colAs kids strive to reach this higher level of lege and the competition is so high, people are education, some struggle with maintaining a balnot taking classes they even like, they are just taking the highest class they can to get the high- ance between their academic and social lives. “Students, they get burned out, then of est GPA,” said senior Erick Blake. course their grades drop which causes them to According to Logan, when students take have mental health issues,” said Logan. “They classes they aren’t genuinely interested in, they get sad, they get depressed and that brings upon may not contribute to the class, and the classroom’s learning environment may not reach its a whole different thing because they are not full potential. keeping themselves healthy.”
November 18, 2011
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up to date on where they are and when their new songs are coming out,” said LaManna. Included in some of these 140 character messages are “hash tags,” a concise word or phrase preceded by the pound symbol. The purpose of these hash tags is to emphasize a key point or idea in the tweet. Hash tags can start to “trend” which means many users on Twitter are using the same hash tag. An example of a trending hash tag is “ThingsLongerThanKimsMarriage” which is referring to celebrity Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries’ 72-day marriage. A tweet by a user going along with this trend was “#ThingsLongerThanKimsMarriage: Taylor Swift’s speech before Kanye snatched the microphone.” Twitter users also tend to tweet a
lot when prominent events are happening. During this year’s Royal Wedding, tweeters mentioned the event 67 times a second. Senior Maggie Denny was one of the users who tweeted about the wedding while up at four a.m. “Even though many of my followers weren’t up during the wedding, I still tweeted because I was just so excited about the whole thing,” said Denny. Though Twitter has been around for several years now, it is just now making its way into the lives of Northwood students. “[Twitter] is just starting to be popular,” said sophomore Hannah Holloway. “It’s always been out there but now everybody’s talking about it.” Some Twitter users once thought differently about the site.
in order to start a family. “One of the reasons he decided not to continue service was because we wanted to have a family,” Cox said. “Being in the military doesn’t help families; you’re separated so much and you miss so much of your childrens’ and your spouse’s lives.” CTE teacher Kim Hall, who has a nephew in the Marines, believes that it has made her family stronger. “It brings us closer in that he’s on all of our minds a lot…. He will try to call when we’re all together so that just makes us want to be together that much more,” Hall said. Despite the effect that the military has had on family relationships, some Northwood students have still considered joining the military. “I’d say that my older brother has had a lot of influence on me [joining the military]; but out of everybody in my family, I’d be the first girl to go in,” Chaney said. Kelly has not completely ruled out join-
ing the military in the future. “It’s a back up plan. I would go be a pediatric surgeon or something. I wouldn’t put myself on the line,” Kelly said. Junior Madison McDiarmid says that because of the effect it had on her father and family, she does not want to join the military. “It is a great honor to be in the military but it breaks down [people] mentally, emotionally and physically. It’s just so hard on them and I would never want to do that,” McDiarmid said. Throughout all the struggles and strained relationships, most families would say that the best part about having a family member overseas would be the moment they get to return home. “I’m just super excited to have one of my brothers back home,” Anderson said. “It’s too quiet without him.”
“At first I thought Twitter was pointless, because it seemed like another Facebook, but it is definitely better than Facebook,” said LaManna. Rhodes, who tweets about 50 times a day, agreed. “I did think [Twitter] was stupid at first; I mean it is tweeting what you do, but I thought it was just the simple things you do all the time,” said Rhodes. “In a way [I think it is still stupid] because people just are talking about their lives. But it is still fun.” Among the many Twitter users at Northwood, some are teachers. High school teachers around the United States have created Twitter accounts specifically for their classes. English teacher Nick Winstead has a Twitter account for his classes, named
“WinsteadEnglish.” “[Twitter] helps parents and students to stay in the loop and to be able to see class assignments, as well as test and quiz dates,” said Winstead. Senior Jessie Vohwinkel is one of Winstead’s students who follows his Twitter page. “[His page] is a convenient reminder because I wouldn’t normally check a website he updates,” said Vohwinkel. “It’s something I have access to at my fingertips.” With now more than 200 million users, this rapidly growing site will become a new part of high school lives. In a few months, who knows what site will take over the tweeters, but for now, hash tags and 140 characters seem to be dominating current days and nights of students.
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Photo Courtesy of Mary Cox
MARY COX stands with her husband Jim in front of the Huey helicopter in 2007.
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to college and they want to do well on the SAT. Everybody is going to take the ACT... if [students not going to college] don’t have any motivation to do well, I think they have the potential to affect [our rating] badly.” In addition to Northwood’s SAT scores going up this year, the school has also made other accomplishments over the last few years, such as being named a NC School of Distinction and becoming on of Newsweek’s Top American High Schools. Blice is worried about how the possibility of lowscoring juniors who aren’t planning on going to college would affect the students if it comes to the school getting a lower rating. “I don’t want to throw [the school’s previous successes] away… people in the university system say of Northwood High School, ‘That’s a good school’ and that’s what I want for you guys,” Blice said. That said, Blice is confident the school will do fine. For the first time in Northwood’s history, this year’s SAT scores are above the state and national averages, an accomplishment that Blice is proud of. “So in that regard, I’m under the belief that we’ll probably do pretty well on the ACT,” Blice said. Blice has started contacting principals of schools in Michigan and Illinois, the two other states that use the same accountability model as North Carolina will. “[I’m asking them], ‘How do you make this work?’ because I want to do it so [that] [students] are successful, [and] also do it in a way so our school can be successful,” Blice said. One of the possible reasons for the school’s SAT success could be that the county provides SAT prep classes for students to take for free before taking the test. Now that students are going to be taking the ACT as well, Blice is looking into
providing those classes too. “Right now we are in negotiations with the people from the Princeton Review to help provide us with a program to prepare students for the ACT,” Blice said. “We don’t want to abandon the SAT prep program for a couple of reasons. It’s been very successful for our students [and] people are still going to take the sat so we’re going to continue that.” This could mean juniors would be doubling up on prep classes on top of their class and sports schedules. Although Blice has concerns with the potential of students not planning on going to college, not everyone believes those students could negatively affect the school’s rating. Freshman David Yester is already considering choosing the military over college and claims that when he becomes a junior, he wouldn’t let that decision impact how he performs on the test. “I would still perform to my potential [because] it could benefit the school and it could benefit the students who are here and affect how they learn,” Yester said. Junior Drew Hill believes that despite the possibility of student carelessness on the test, juniors should still perform decently. “I think [my peers would] do well because [the test is] most of the subjects at school so it would show that we’re learning,” Hill said. But the impact of this new model will be unknown until next year when the program comes into effect. “It’s an awful lot of changes,” said Blice. “I think if we don’t come up with a way to make it work, it could have a very negative impact. I don’t want it to do that. I want it to be very successful for [the students], I want it to be very successful for our school.”
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Carlin writes first play, Mirrors, showing this weekend
By Taylor Maloch Staff Writer
This summer, when Northwood drama teacher Lori Carlin knew her acting ensemble class was all girls, she knew she had a problem. So she put her skills to the test and wrote an all-girls play called Mirrors. The opening show was last night, and performances will continue Saturday and Sunday. “I knew there wasn’t going to be [a play] that we could do that was going to be good or that was going to have decent roles for
all of the girls. I wanted them to have one play that they could all work on together,” Carlin said. Carlin wrote the first draft of the play in one month, ultimately completing three drafts. “It’s taking a risk,” Carlin said. “Putting myself out there as a writer is something I’m not confident about.” Carlin wrote the play with the help of her acting ensemble class, a group of 14 girls, this past summer. The students edited the script and added qualities to their characters that they wanted.
Taylor Maloch/The Omniscient
MIRRORS, an original play by Lori Carlin, centers around three sisters.
MTV: Then and Now
“Reality” replaces music By Jessica Clayton Staff Writer
“Ladies and gentlemen, rock and roll.” These were the words spoken by John Lack, Chief Partner Creator of MTV, on August 1, 1981 to launch MTV as the “new face of music videos.” Since then, the channel has evolved from solely airing music videos to an endless marathon of reality TV. “When I was a teenager, MTV was geared more towards music and music appreciation, so there were many more music videos and interviews with singers and rappers… There were definitely no reality shows or sexual content,” said assistant principal Melanie Williams. Most people know MTV today as a host of television shows, with very little to do with music and music videos. “There is not much music on there anymore; it is not the same MTV it used to be when it first came out,” said sophomore Madison Straits. In 1981, the station was based on airing things only about music 24/7. Northwood phys. ed teacher Russ Frazier thinks that the current MTV does not air enough music videos to be called Music Television. In fact, in 2010, MTV dropped “Music Television” from its corporate logo. “They mainly play music videos when [students] are in school or should be asleep,” Frazier said. “When I was in high school, people went home from school to watch TRL, [a daily showcase for music videos].” MTV used to feature a wide variety of music on a regular basis. There were shows devoted to specific music genres. For instance, TRL, or Total Request Live, was a television series that featured popular music videos that stopped airing in 2008. “MTV focused on rock-and-roll, alternative and pop music and maybe one or two shows that focused on rap and R&B,” said Williams. Now, most viewers that watched MTV in its early stages no longer watch the station because it has changed so much. Frazier
says he doesn’t watch it because there’s nothing he wants to see. But since 1986, the percentage of teenage viewers climbed from 43 percent to 75 percent. “It’s got a lot of reality shows and it’s entertaining most of the time. It’s interesting to see different people’s lives; it’s people our age and it’s just what’s going on now. It’s pop culture,” said Straits. Senior Anna Brown thinks MTV has changed from being centered on music to being centered on television shows. “MTV is reality, but it’s more like teen reality and stuff that goes on in our lives and stuff that we find interesting and funny,” said Brown. Some teenagers enjoy watching MTV because they feel like they can relate their lives to the shows aired, which they also find entertaining and full of drama. “I watch MTV because a lot of the reality shows portray extraordinary lifestyles of teens and it’s entertaining. It gives you a good laugh because some of the people are just ridiculous,” said Straits. Some people think that MTV is a bad influence on younger viewers. Shows such as Jersey Shore and The Real World depict people partying, fighting and participating in other extreme activities. “I don’t like all the reality shows because I think it gives kids the wrong impression of what reality is,” said CTE teacher Delisa Cohen. A few Northwood students believe MTV has a negative influence on people’s lives. “MTV has a bad influence on people because it’s all about partying and going to the clubs,” said junior David Candelori. Others believe that MTV, and television in general, should not be blamed for the decisions of teenagers. “I think that there is so much information in the world and teenagers are smart enough to make their own decisions. Just because you see it doesn’t mean you have to do it; I wouldn’t attribute anything to one television channel,” said Williams.
“I imagined [the play] in my head before my girls even got their hands on it, so I know how I want things pronounced, and that makes me more of a control freak than I usually am,” Carlin said. When Carlin first started writing the play she knew she wanted it to be about teenage girls. “I was writing toward a group of girls,” Carlin said. “I wanted it to be meaningful for them.” At one point it was about the entire cast playing three characters. But after thinking about it, Carlin came across an article by one of her former students about summer reading lists. “I was tickled by [her article], because even though I was a nerd, I struggled with getting my summer reading list done,” Carlin said. “I thought how interesting it would be for teenagers to see how the books they are reading can be reflected in their own lives.” Carlin decided this would be a good idea, and it tied in with the curriculum in the English department. The outline of the play is about three sisters in different places in high school, relating to popular books from The Hunger Games to The Great Gatsby. “The reading reflects who they are and the struggles that they face,” Carlin said. Even though only the acting ensemble class will be performing onstage, a lot of
Taylor Maloch/The Omniscient
JOSY CHRISTIAN and RACHEL EVANS rehearse for Mirrors. groups around Northwood are helping out. The art department is helping with posters, Carlin’s technical theater class is designing the set and senior Hunter Flaugher and his group of technicians are doing the sound. Saturday’s performance is at 7 p.m., while Sunday’s show begins at 3 p.m. The cost to attend is $5.
Goodbye, Archonettes: Step team changes name, philosophy
Madison Roberts/The Omniscient
STANCE STEP TEAM MEMBERS practice in the bus lobby after school. By Madison Roberts Staff Writer
This year, for the first time, the Northwood step team is no longer called the Archonettes. Northwood students, along with the help of their adviser Yanique Walters, created a new organization called STANCE Step Team. The student generated acronym STANCE stands for Students Teaching Awareness and New Cultural Expressions. The name is not the only change the team has had this year. STANCE Step Team is no longer funded by or in any way affiliated with the Zeta Phi Beta sorority, which supports teams across the country. Club president Alexis Fearrington said that STANCE changed from Archonettes to involve male students. “We were wanting to get guys more involved this year and we wanted to branch off and do more cultural things,” Fearrington said. Dante Cobb, the only male member of STANCE, said he enjoys STANCE, but he wishes that more males would join. “I like how we come together to step and do community service activities,” Cobb said. “It’s fun because I’m used to hanging around all girls all the time, but then again I want more boys to join to make it more neutral.”
Freshman Malika Guess said that having a male team member impacts the group’s playlist. “Sometimes, the types of songs we do are not appropriate…. It’s kind of weird because he’s the only guy but I guess it doesn’t really matter; he’s part of the team.” Fearrington said STANCE is now focused more on volunteering, as opposed to just focusing on stepping. “We’re more focused on community service hours with STANCE; it’s more of a club rather than a team,” Fearrington said. “You can join STANCE just for community service and/or to step and perform.” Senior Marisa Mckissick, who has been on the step team since freshman year, says STANCE has helped her grow as a person. “It helped me step out of my box,” Mckissick said. “Normally I wouldn’t have gotten in front of everybody at a pep rally. I like that you can be a part of something that helps you grow.” Despite being the only male team member, Cobb said that STANCE has affected his high school experience for the better. “It makes me want to keep my grades up and do more community service,” Cobb said. “I feel like I’ve learned how to work better with friends and I’ve learned more communication skills and how to be a better person.”
November 18, 2011
Remembering Steve Jobs: Apple’s impact on NHS and the world By Caroline Schneider Editor-in-Chief
tional software,” said Principal Chris Blice. “They’re pursuing that, so they’re making good deals for school systems.” On Oct. 5, America looked on as news Junior Brooke Jackson is a Mac user and stations were flooded with stories on the an iPod owner. death of Steve Jobs, the creator of Apple “The Mac is easier to use for me and it’s and one of the CEOs of really fast,” Jackson the company. Tributes said, supporting her were made to him choice for a Mac over a everywhere from CNN. PC. “It just works better com to Southpoint’s and it has neater things Apple store. on it than a normal Tributes seen at computer does.” Apple stores may have Jackson isn’t the flowers or candles, only one who sides but at Northwood, with Apple in the wellBetsy Kreutzberg, the known Mac vs. PC Caroline Schneider/The Omniscient librarian, made a small argument. Blice also poster tribute for Jobs to owns a Mac laptop, and display at the library entrance and a smaller he remembers when he made his switch paper tribute for Jobs displayed on the from a PC to a Mac. cover of her laptop. “When I first came to Northwood, I “All the kids have Apple laptops so I was a PC person,” Blice said. “I had a PC thought that they needed to be aware that laptop that [the county] bought me, and the creator of that had died,” said Kreutzthe hard drive fried itself about a year ago. berg of why she made the tributes. They gave me one of the student laptops to Every student in Chatham County is use temporarily while they ordered a new given a school issued Mac laptop at the one, and after I used it for about a month, I beginning of the school year that they are called them up and said I really don’t want to use throughout the year in each of their the PC anymore… I love it.” classes. This is because Peggy DougNot everyone feels the same way as less, the previous technology director of Northwood’s principal, however. Chatham County schools, steered it so that “I’m not a big Mac fan,” admits Northeverybody had a Mac. wood’s technician, Mike Love, with a Apple is also doing its part to make sure laugh. that they’re well known among today’s Love owns a PC instead of a Mac, an students. Mp3 player in place of the better-known “Apple is kind of the king of educaiPod, and even a Droid opposed to the simi-
Video Game Roundup
lar iPhone. But Love defends his choices “It’s ridiculously easy, you just type with logic related to his profession. in whatever artist you want, and you just “With a regular PC computer, I can go buy [the song you want] and it’s in your to a parts store and put something together. folder,” said junior Alex Waddell. But with a Mac, everything is so proprie“It puts all the music in one spot and tary… it has to be Mac, everything has to be I can just click on the box and get rid of Mac… [to] go home and build a Mac would whatever music I’m not into right now be very hard. Mac’s not very flexible.” and whenever I feel like listening to it But despite Love’s rationalization, Apple again I just click on it and its right back is still one of the world’s leading technolinto my iPod,” Waddell said. ogy companies. And as students of the future continue Seventy eight percent of Northwood to use their laptops, listen to their iTunes students own apple products other than and fixate on their iPhones, they will their school-issued computers. always have Jobs to thank for that. Jackson said that her favorite Apple “He was a visionary guy that I think product is her iPod, as the technology has done an awful lot to change the face that makes her able to listen to music of how we use computers, and he will be wherever she goes has changed her life. greatly missed,” said Blice. “[I use my iPod] every day, for hours on end. When I’m doing my homework and before I go to bed,” Jackson said. One of the most distinguishing things about an iPod would be its connection to the well known iTunes, which, according to the website is “a free application for your [computer that] organizes and plays your digital music and Caroline Schneider/The Omniscient video” and makes it almost effortless to find LIBRARIAN BETSY KREUTZBERG created memorials for Steve Jobs at the media center entrance (above) and and download music her own Mac (left). online.
Music Reviews Artist: Mac Miller Album: Blue Slide Park Go Download: “Under the Weather”
As a fairly new rapper, Mac Miller released his newest album Blue Slide Park Nov. 8. This album meets all my expectations; he brought a fresh style to the game including sick beats, witty lyrics and a singsong voice anyone could love. Blue Slide Park takes you on a journey through Mac Miller’s roots and illustrates why he is known as the future face of hip-hop. Being 19 years old, he knows how to reach out to the teenage generation with his music and Blue Slide Park demonstrates that fact with perfection. He has his fans in the palm of his hand; they’re just waiting to see what else this young rapper is capable of. — Jessica Clayton
Photo courtesy of CallofDuty.com
MODERN WARFARE 3 hit stores Nov. 8. By Matt Waite zero-G shoot-out and a battle set durStaff Writer ing a sandstorm. The multiplayer adds a host of improvements, such as an im2011 has been a great year for gamers proved spawn points, better balancing, with so many acclaimed titles being a new weapon progression system and released that it would require a much a point streak system that replaces the larger piggy bank and more “sick” days previous kill streak system. Modern than most people have access to. This list Warfare 3 does not do anything vastly should help make some tough decisions different from previous entries, but a bit easier by highlighting some top does offer a huge amount of content releases that contain something to suit and a compelling multiplayer that is any gamer’s interests, as long as those still one of the best available. interests include shooting, exploding, Dark Souls hacking, slashing, stabbing, punching, Deemed by many to be the hardest kicking, and burning innumerable foes. game of the current generation of conBatman: Arkham City soles, Demon Souls spares no expense After significantly raising the bar for to make sure you will die repeatedly. what could be expected in a superhero If you are not looking for a challenge, game with Batman: Arkham Asylum, Dark Souls is not for you; however, Rocksteady Studios followed the release those willing to brave innumerable up with a sequel that is being haled as a deaths can enjoy a very rewarding and leading contender for game of the year. highly atmospheric RPG with a unique Arkham City’s graphics, game play and multiplayer component. story all stand out as some of the best Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim of the year and the open world has tons Skyrim is so engaging and vast in of content and a new game plus mode, size that it is almost ridiculous. Accordwhich gives it hours of game play. This ing to developer Bethesda, the game game is a must have not only for fans contains over 300 hours of game play, of superhero games, but for those who and after playing it for several hours, enjoy action/adventure games in general. it seems like even that claim may be Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 underestimating the sheer amount of The new Modern Warfare 3 does content available in the game. Besides not bring any major changes to the the countless side quests, engaging stoseries, but it is a competent entry, and ryline and vast world, there are numergiven its troubled development cycle, ous random events to encounter, over is probably the best that could be 100 dungeons to explore and countless hoped for. The single player camactivities to experience. The game is not paign concludes the trilogy started by without its faults, but they are very easy Modern Warfare with a solid story and to ignore with all the expertly designed several epic set pieces that include a content that Bethesda created.
Artist: Scotty McCreery Album: Clear As Day Go Download: “Clear As Day” American Idol winner Scotty McCreery came out with his new album Oct 4, Clear As Day. This 12-track CD did not make anything very clear to me at all. McCreery’s deep-toned simplicity is not utilized in these songs one bit. The CD does feature some of his popular singles like “I Love You This Big” and “The Trouble with Girls,” both of which did not stand out very much in the first place because the songs do not have an original sound. One song that sticks out is “Clear as Day,” which reminded myself and probably many others of why he won American Idol in the first place. This song portrayed McCreery’s true talents in a sentimental way. — Ally DeJong Artist: Florence and the Machine Album: Ceremonials Go Download: “Bedroom Hymns” Ceremonials does not live up to the high Florence standards set by Lungs, a better, previous album. While the songs from Lungs were pretty and fantastical, on the new album Florence seems to have obtained this urge in her voice to yell and sing aggressively; the new songs almost sound like ranting. It’s a little bit more hipster/ rock-girl than classic bluesy, soulful Flo. It’s become pop music. Regardless, her voice is intoxicating, and I love the beat of each and every song, especially when people are pounding on drums in the background. It’s feel-good music. All of the songs are great before you hit the chorus. They have this great climax of soft melodies on a strong beat building up to the chorus, then the chorus comes in and it’s a totally different song. Suddenly I am left wondering what I am listening to. — Kaitlyn Mattiace
ACT changes damaging to Northwood’s reputation?
As written about in the article on page one, the state will have a new accountability model where all juniors will be required to take the ACT for free next semester. First of all, we do not believe that part of our school’s rating should be based off of a single standardized test that one class takes. Both the SAT and ACT aren’t entirely designed to assess what you know. They are full of questions that can be answered simply by knowing test-taking strategies learned through prep classes. How does that measure the performance of the school as a whole? It doesn’t. It is an assessment of an individual’s ability to take a standardized test EOCs, which will now only account for 30 percent of the school’s rating, measure students who have been sitting in classrooms, learning the material from Northwood teachers for 90 days. Not only do EOCs measure student learning, but they also measure the teacher’s ability to communicate the material to their students. EOCs are a much better evaluation of the school as a whole than the ACT. Second of all, juniors are already extremely busy. Most of them are taking the initiative to prepare for college and challenge themselves with their curriculum. Juniors are all required to complete the Charger Challenge, and now on top of all of that, they are required to take the ACT. We do realize that this is an opportunity for students to take a test for college
applications free of charge, but what about those students who don’t care about their college acceptance or want to go directly into the workforce? Not only will this test not benefit those students, but we believe that it may also poorly reflect our school. If you require a student to take a standardized test that they have not been properly prepared for and will not personally benefit them, they tend not to care. We worry about the students who bubble in random answers. Those students now weigh into 30 percent of our school’s reputation. Finally, we worry that this new ACT program will take away from class time. In addition to missing a day to take the test, we feel that teachers will be inclined to teach ACT strategies instead of teaching material that is beneficial to their course curriculum. Instead of requiring students to take the ACT, we think that the state should give students the option to take the ACT. Those students who believe that the ACT will benefit them can still take the test for free, but you eliminate wasting money on the students who don’t care. With some colleges turning away from tests like the ACT and SAT, it’s not fair to measure our school based on a single standardized test. Having the ACT as an option, not a requirement, would allow EOCs to count towards our schools’ reputation and measure our performance. They are a much more fair representation of the school as a whole instead of the individuals within our student body.
Frack is whack
microorganisms in our water that other creatures feed off. They cannot tolerate a change in pH, salinity, or chemical presence in the water, so they die off. Without the tiny organisms that are the base of the food web, whatever species feeds on them has less food. It’s all a chain reaction. Everything has an effect on everything I like to drink water. I like to drink water that else. You lose one piece, such as a safe environis clean and safe, and I have never had to quesment to live in, and everything/everyone else tion the purity of the water I’m drinking, but is at risk. I’m afraid I might have to sometime soon. Supposedly, the wastewater is remediated Imagine a giant drill going as deep as 8,000 by the fracking companies using evaporators feet into the ground, then drilling horizontally to evaporate volatile organic compounds and to blast the land with millions of gallons of wa- condensate tanks to steam off VOCs. They then ter, sand and chemicals. The resulting pressure truck off the wastewater to a water treatment fractures the shale, opening fissures that allow facility. I don’t understand how you can posnatural gas to flow out of the well. This process, sibly effectively collect all of the contaminated known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is water and separate out the gas and chemicals illegal in North Carolina—for now. Despite without dispersing any chemicals, wastewater the suspected dangers and risks, some North or gas straight into the atmosphere. Carolina lawmakers are determined to legalize I doubt that these companies consider the fracking. gas being used and emisGee, what a great idea! sions given off by the 100 Why wouldn’t we want our or more trucks needed to land super-blasted with water ship the two million gallons that contains over 80,000 of water per frack. Maybe pounds of chemicals? Never they think it’s ok to use mind the 2-5 million gallons tons of energy to transport of usable water that is wasted the water, because more in each frack. energy is being accumuGas comes up in the water lated through the fracking and must be separated from in which these trucks are it on the surface. Only 30needed. It doesn’t make Kaitlyn Mattiace/The Omniscient sense to me. 50% of the water is typically recovered from a well. Most A SIGN in Chatham County While this may seem protests fracking. of this non-biodegradable like an effective way to juice is left behind as highly treat the wastewater, it toxic wastewater waiting to leech into our soil, actually creates more pollution. When the contaminate our drinking water and decrease evaporated VOCs come into contact with soil fertility, destroying our farms. Believe it diesel exhaust from trucks and machinery at or not, the salad you had for lunch was in the the well site, a few chemical reactions occur, ground at some point before it got in the pretty and ground-level ozone (the bad type of plastic bag at the grocery store. ozone!) is produced. Let me pause and acknowledge the Safe Duke University conducted a study Drinking Water Act, a piece of legislation regarding fracking sites at Marcellus Shale in passed in 1974 to ensure clean drinking water Pennsylvania and Utica Shale in upstate New free from contaminates. But wait, the Energy York. They found evidence of “methane conPolicy Act of 2005 exempted natural gas tamination of shallow drinking-water systems drilling from the Safe Drinking Water Act, in at least three areas of the region and suggest the Clean Water Act and the Clean Air Act. important environmental risks accompanying Therefore, companies don’t have to meet safety shale-gas exploration.” While methane disregulations listed in this legislation, or have to solved in water is not a classified health hazard tell us what chemicals they are using in frackfor ingestion, it sure is flammable and is an ing, making it easy for them to use whatever it explosion and fire hazard. takes to maximize profit. In some cases, contamination is so bad This is a very bad idea. Pollution caused people are finding if they take a flame to by the wastewater is enough to devastate our their running water faucet, it will burst into whole ecosystem. It all starts with the little bitty a stream of fire. Mmmmm, drink up!
Northwood Newbies Taylor Maloch
- THE NORTHWOOD -
- EDITORS Editor-in-Chief: Caroline Schneider
The Northwood Omniscient is published monthly by journalism students at Northwood Opinion Editor: High School. It aims to present accurate covMadison Roberts erage of events of interest to our readers, as - STAFF well as provide an open forum for the opinEmily Brooks ions of students, faculty and the community. Jessica Clayton We welcome letters to the editor, which can be delivered to the advisor in Room 914 Ally DeJong or sent to the school’s address. Letters must Taylor Maloch be signed, and the staff reserves the right to Kaitlyn Mattiace reject any letter containing libelous stateAustin Moody ments, to edit for length and to ascertain the Gloria Rodriguez truthfulness of the content. Letters should be Matt Waite limited to 250 words. Unsigned editorials represent the majority -ADVISORview of the editorial board. Columns, letNeal Morgan ters and cartoons represent the views of the firstname.lastname@example.org authors.
New Kid. We hear these two simple words around school all the time. Rumors fly around about what the “new kid” is like, where he or she is from and why they’re coming here. I have never been a new kid until this past year, when I unexpectedly had to change schools. If you have ever been a new kid you know what its like; everything seems to be out of the ordinary. Most new kids are not happy from the beginning. They never wanted to move in the first place. Back home they had friends and family, people who cared about them. In this new place nobody cares; they just want to know the basics and move on to the next person. I feel bad for the kids that have to move so far away from their home. I know that my old school is just 40 minutes down the road, but it feels like a lifetime away. I can’t imagine how kids from different states feel.
I know some new kids can be annoying, always starting their sentences with, “At my old school…” but hey, give them a break, it’s their first year. It’s hard going into another high school with fresh faces, new rules and expectations. When I realized that I had to go to Northwood, I was not excited at all. Lucky me, I actually found out I was coming here the day before school started. I have lived in Apex my whole life, and I did not want to move schools. But when I came to Northwood, I was actually shocked. Most of the students and staff were really nice; people even realized that I was new on the first day. My old school has about 4,000 students, so it would take a while for everyone to figure you’re new, or find out that you left. Every new kid should feel welcome when they come into a new school, and Northwood did a pretty good job with that. Even though first semester is almost over, I’m still learning names and faces. My advice for someone coming into Northwood would be to not hold back, don’t be shy and have some fun. We only have a few years left before we’re out of here, so let’s make the most of it.
November 18, 2011
Toddlers take on technology
Nice call, Ref... Ally DeJong
Caroline Schneider/The Omniscient
BABY JACK can open his own apps on his parent’s iPads. with technological advances it doesn’t matter if the University of Wherever found that by using a cell phone we’re not going to concentrate in class as well, because in today’s society, we all have cell phones and that’s not going to make us put them down. Although negative consequences are absolutely noteworthy, I think it would be a better use Today’s technological advances are mind blowing. Well, not to me exactly, because I grew of our time to focus on what these technologically advanced minds will be able to do for us in up with a television, wireless phones and an the future. iPod, but compared to where we were 30 years By the time today’s toddlers are 10, I ago? Mind blowing. And although my parents may still be amazed that their 17-year-old daugh- wouldn’t be surprised if they could make an entire iMovie by themselves. By the time these ter can text as fast as I do, while walking even, kids are 25 who knows what they will be doing I believe that there’s something more amazing for NASA or what kinds of new technology they happening with young people and technology, will be coming up with to help make our lives and when I say young, I mean young. even easier than they already are. Baby Jack turned two in August. His parents I’m not saying that toddlers should give up both have iPads and that child can use those devices better than I could imagine. He can slide books and blocks completely. From my multiple babysitting nights, I understand that being able open them and go to whatever app he desires, to play with cars or dolls are important to the whether it be his Mickey Mouse Club House development of any child. And I’m also not show, his Winnie the Pooh book app or listen to his CDs in the library of the device. It is amazing saying that it’s a good idea for parents to throw their children down in front of a Macbook and what this toddler can do with this technology. walk away. I’m just thinking, thinking about all But then that brings me to the question at hand: of the possibilities in the years to come. This is a what does this mean for the future? new society we’re living in. There are new ways There are studies on top of studies that show of learning due to numerous monthly advances how bad it is for children to watch TV or use a and there is no surprise that those new ways will computer for more than five minutes a day. But more than likely lead to more advanced and into these studies, I say, “Too late.” And it is too late, because at this point in how far we’ve come novative generations to come.
What were you thinking when you got dressed this morning?
it up. It’s not cute. You aren’t at a club, you’re at school. There is a time and place for mini skirts and midriff, and it’s not between the hours of eight and three in a classroom. Now I’m not talking about your shorts being too short, because we all know that particular rule is enforced to the point of exhaustion here at Northwood. Just cover up what shouldn’t be Walking around the hallways, I sometimes seen, and dress with some class. wonder if some students get dressed in the Finally: if I were to list my pet peeves, this dark. Although not clearly listed anywhere, one would be at the TOP of my list. No white there are some fashion rules that need to be jeans, pants, shorts, dresses or shoes should be brought to everyone’s attention. on any human body part between Labor Day Number one: even though and Easter. When I see girls Beyoncé said it, not all of us walking around with white can be “Sasha Fierce.” Don’t pants on in November, I just go walking around town in want to walk up to them and six inch pumps and a leotard. tell them that you just cannot The only people that should do that. I don’t care if you be wearing leotards are dancthink your white jeans look ers. In addition, if you walk good with your brown boots. around Pittsboro in some It’s a major fashion no-no. pumps, people are going to White is a summer color; look at you very strangely; there’s a reason why white unless it is prom night, there jeans are on sale this time of Emily Brooks/ The Omniscient isn’t anything that formal in year, so don’t wear them. WHITE JEANS after Labor Pittsboro that you need to Off-white, cream and winter Day are unacceptable. wear pumps for. white are okay, but not plain Number two: leggings white. White tops, jackets and are not pants. I, personally, am glad that they sweaters are also okay, just don’t wear white banned leggings at Northwood because some below the waist. Some say that the law is dead, girls abused the privilege of wearing leggings. but in reality it’s not. We live in the south, and Leggings are like another layer of skin; you can this southern rule is still going strong. The only see every curve and roll when you wear them human beings that are allowed to wear white as pants. Whatever you do, do not wear tights dresses and shoes after Labor Day are brides. and call them leggings, then proceed to wear So, ladies of Northwood, don’t let me those as pants. You can see right through tights. have to stop and stare in shock at what you If you must wear leggings or tights, you need to have on in the morning. I’m not saying I am wear a dress with them, or a very long sweater. a fashionista, or that I am dressed to impress Number three: don’t let all your skin hang everyday, but I know well enough the many out. Quit trying to impress the boys and cover rules of fashion that shouldn’t be broken.
I play competitive club soccer, so I have seen first hand all the types of refs imaginable. I realize that bad refs are in every sport but those refs can be simply overlooked because of instant replay. Soccer does not have instant replay so a good ref is vital. I feel like this should change. The “center of attention” ref basically blows his whistle just to cause reactions from the crowd watching the game. The “make peace not war” ref blows his whistle every time someone falls, or might I say, touches someone on the opposing team. The “guilty” ref will call a foul on one team, and then will feel like he has to call a foul on the other team. Just let us play the game. The “choosing sides” ref already has a clear favorite from the beginning (for whatever reason) and will play on that team’s “side” the whole game. The ref who is always “under the influence” will take the reactions from players and fans and make a bad call based on that. For example, when a player trips because they are not strong enough to battle for the ball, they will fall and scream “REF!” and he will side with them and all of the screaming parents saying, “COME ON!” The “sexist” ref who will ref one way for a woman’s game and call every little shove or
glimpse of aggressiveness. Meanwhile, they will ref a men’s game and let them actually play the game and not make calls every five seconds because “boys will be boys.” “Touchy-feely” refs are also irritating because when someone is laying on the ground crying, he will settle her down by giving her a penalty of some sort. The “blind” ref, who, when an actual foul does take place will never acknowledge it. I would actually prefer to play with a “blind” ref because then we can just have a good, competitive game. Most sports are contact sports; you’re allowed to bump and shove and it’s not your fault if the other person can’t take a hit. I’m not just going to let the girl dribble down the field and score; I’m going to stop her and if she falls in the process then that’s just too bad. A perfect example of a bad ref on a professional level was in the Women’s World Cup game, USA vs. Brazil. Two incorrect calls by the ref (Jacqui Melksham from Australia) led to two goals for Brazil, and a deliberate handball was left un-called. I personally cannot understand how this could happen in a major, international tournament. I understand that people make mistakes, but in a sport where you can’t use instant replay, refs need to ref the game accurately. Too frequently games are ruined because of atrocious calls that make the outcome of the game different. I feel like we should never let human eyes dictate the game; it is time that, soccer especially, starts going to instant replay, at least for the professional level.
Photo courtesy of Dori DeJong
A REFEREE inspects physical soccer play at a recent club soccer game.
Not Enough Time in the Day Jessica Clayton Who has time to do anything? Not this girl. Between schoolwork, afterschool activities, my family and my social life, I feel like there is no time in the week to complete anything. Schoolwork takes up a lot of my time, getting assigned homework in all of my classes, loaded with essays and other projects, there’s just not enough time to complete it all. I don’t want to do work on the weekends, because let’s face it, that’s our time; we’re supposed to relax, not struggle doing work that teachers assign us after a whole week of hard work. I think we learn enough over the course of the week that we don’t need extra things to do on our time off. I feel like even on the weekends I’m stressed out by school. Some kids that get assigned homework on the weekends aren’t going to turn it in on Monday, so why assign it in the first place? I think after spending seven hours at school, five days a week, we deserve a two-day break where we don’t have to do homework. This includes breaks for holidays, when we are supposed to be on vacation or spending time with family, some teachers just don’t care and assign a huge work -load anyway.
On top of that, kids have all these extra curricular activities like sports and clubs that leave no time for anything but schoolwork. Some kids don’t even get home until late at night, which doesn’t leave any time for anything but homework. Colleges want us to be well rounded, but after work and activities, I don’t have time to do anything else. Then Northwood students are required to do the Charger Challenge. As a sophomore I have 20 hours of community service, plus eight hours of job shadowing; that’s just one more thing to add to the list of responsibilities. Students are so loaded down with required work and activities that there is no time to actually be a teenager. We’re supposed to be able to “enjoy the time we have as a kid,” not be stressed 24/7 because so much is expected out of us. I want time to actually hang out with my friends and family without worrying about working on the next assignment. If students had less work, they would try harder because they wouldn’t have to worry about getting everything done; they would just work hard on one assignment. There are so many things students miss out on, like sports, clubs and just being a teenager, because there’s simply not enough time in the day. So what do we give up next, sleep? Oh wait, too late, I already don’t have time to do that either. Teachers, we’re only young once.
Beyond NHS: Students turn to club sports
By Ally DeJong Staff Writer
“We’re always playing soccer, we’re always on the road. We really don’t have time to do anything else.” Freshman Jamie Palermo plays club soccer one-and-a-half to two hours a day, seven days a week; she is always on the go. Students play all types of sports; some can be played on separate club teams outside of school. Clubs are also referred to as “travel ball,” and mainly focus on having athletes get noticed by colleges to advance in the sport for those colleges. Clubs travel farther distances to play teams in other areas. The locations can vary depending on how good teams are and what divisions they are ranked. The higher divisions play across the state, or beyond, in search to find a higher level of competition. Chris Smith, a club basketball player for the Chapel Hill Kings, talked about why he prefers his club team to playing for Northwood. “I like travel better because you meet new people and it’s better competition; you get a whole lot better,” Smith said. Students who play for club teams often play for school teams as well. Clubs normally arrange the season schedules to fit so that athletes can play both. Because of this arrangement, athletes practice all year long. Jeff Forbes, a senior club soccer player who also plays for Northwood, contrasted the differences between his two teams.
“Club soccer [focuses on] a lot more skill and possession, as opposed to Northwood, which is focused more on athletes and speed,” Forbes said. There are many reasons students choose to play club sports. It could be because of better scholarship opportunities, or just for fun. “I play just for fun even though my club team is dedicated to getting the boys into college. Both [teams] want to see us succeed, but club wants to see us succeed in college,” said Josh Alvord, a senior soccer player. Some students feel the environment for the two teams is different because while Northwood focuses on winning and fun, club teams focus on improvement and teamwork to win. “The [club] team is more focused on getting better than winning; you want to win but we’re just trying to work as a team. We are very team oriented… it shows on the court with our chemistry,” said junior basketball player Gaby Mehringer, who plays club ball with the Carolina Bells. Students agreed that the coaching is different too. Club coaches have full-time jobs being a coach for many high-ranked teams within the club. Athletes pay high costs to be a part of these teams and are there solely for that sport. “The coaches for travel ball are much more strict and they like perfection. The coaches here are more easy and laid back,” said sophomore softball player Morgan Oldham, who plays for the Lady Blues. Allie Ray, a cheerleader for the Carolina Legacy All-Stars, talked about how rules can vary for club and Northwood sports depending on types of equipment used.
Photo courtesy of Dori DeJong
FRESHMAN JAMIE PALERMO (LEFT) plays club soccer for Triangle United Gold. “Stuff that is illegal at Northwood is legal in all-star because of the different mats you’re on,” Ray said. Some students do just play for fun, but others are looking to excel in college. Padgett Harrington, a softball player for Presbyterian College, graduated from Northwood in 2011. In high school she played for a “travel” softball team that helped her to be able to play softball in college. “Most travel teams have a fall and sum-
mer season where they go to showcase tournaments which are tournaments that are typically played purely for college coaches to have the opportunity to see a lot of talent,” Harrington said. Harrington said that students need selfdiscipline to play sports at the next level. “Playing travel ball can help you prepare for college if you have the discipline and determination to take it seriously enough and allow it to prepare you,” she said.
By Caroline Schneider Editor-in-Chief
she’s competed in. She has been conference Player of the Year three times in a row and has been All-Conference every year she has played on the high school team. This year she was the regional champion and the individual runner-up at the state tournament. “I was disappointed at how I finished at the state championship this year but the main point is that I’ve improved my scores all four years, which was one of my goals, and I’ve worked hard,” Brooks said. Golf is usually thought of as an individual sport, where players single handedly compete against other players. For the high school and college levels though, players compete as teams, where the top three scores are combined to create the team’s score. Players are still recognized for how well they do individually, however, and not every player focuses as much on the team as they do themselves. “That’s the biggest challenge,” said Crisp. “Having the girls see it as a team sport rather than an individual sport.” Junior Borden Thomas has been on the team for two years and she enjoys both the individual and the group aspects of high school golf. “I like it because you want to get better for yourself and if you mess up you don’t let the whole team down,” said Thomas. “It’s like a self goal but then you have the whole team behind you.” The team’s captains, Brooks and Denny, are ranked first and second on the team and have watched it grow over the last four years. “I think the biggest thing that they’ve done is set examples for the other players,” said Crisp. “I mean everybody wants to hit like them, they want to play like them, and that’s huge.” Thomas agreed. “They’re really great captains because they keep the team going and I’ll be sad to see them go.”
Ford grows as runner during Girls’ golf finishes 2nd at first cross-country season States in program’s 4th year By Kaitlyn Mattiace Staff Writer
of runners run an Indian Run, or a few miles in a line formation where the runner in the back of the line sprints to the front A grin slowly spreads across crossof the line and when they get to the front country runner Thomas Ford’s face as of the line, the next runner at the back he rounds the corner of the track, headed sprints and so on. for the finish line. Just like all the other “First we have to do an Indian, a big runners, he crosses the finish line to find O, and an [outer] loop,” said Ford. friends, family and teachers congratulat“He talks about some of the meets ing him on another great that he’s participated in; race with high-fives and he talks about the differsmiles. ent courses… [how] some Ford enjoyed running were confusing and not laid on the cross-country team out as nicely as ours,” said and going to practice. Bartholf. “I made new friends at While being on a team practice,” said Ford. is a commitment for stuIt has been a season of dents to go to practice and learning and accomplishrun every day, friendships ment for Ford, a freshman inevitably develop and in Carol Bartholf’s class good times are had. who ran on the cross-coun“[Being on the team] try team. made him a little more outPhoto courtesy of Jackie Ford going. It helped him a lot, “He has definitely THOMAS FORD compet- being with all the kids,” enjoyed [running on the team], he’s a good runed for boys’ cross-country. said Horton. ner,” said Bartholf. “He Finishing the season, has those long legs and a long stride and Ford has many improved race times and he’s improved a great deal during the memories with new friends to look back time that he’s been running cross-country on, as well as a strong bond with Coach because he really wasn’t used to running Ron Horton. such long lengths, but every week he “I think he brought out the best in kept improving and he’s a great crosseverybody, kind of like having him here country runner now.” made us [further enjoy] being here,” said The most challenging thing, Ford said, teammate Tyler Klund, a junior. about being on the cross-country team “Every time the girls cheered for him, was getting used to the vast amount of he ran faster,” said teammate Delaney running. Henry, a senior. A typical cross-country practice Ford started out running the 5-K races consists of running various loops on the in about 38 or 39 minutes and he ended trail, sometimes with breaks in between, the season breaking 33 minutes, cutting adding up to 3-6 miles. An Outer Loop is about 6 minutes off his time and finishing a 2-mile loop on the trail and a Big O is a sooner with each and every race. mile loop on the trail. Sometimes a group “We have to finish it hard,” Ford said.
In 2008, three freshmen, two seniors and their new coach walked onto a golf course as Northwood’s first female golf team. Those freshmen are now seniors and have acquired multiple wins and personal accomplishments over the past four years, including placing second at States earlier this month. When Emily Brooks and Maggie Denny were middle school students anticipating the high school life ahead of them, one thing that stuck out to them was that there was no Northwood girls’ golf team. “So their fathers all came to me [and] asked me if I would be available to coach,” said Karen Crisp, the girl’s coach. With her experience as a golf instructor at Chapel Ridge, and her work with the Junior Club at the Preserve, Crisp accepted the position, making the team whole. Since that first year, the girls’ team has been annually successful. In 2008 they placed eighth at states and the following year they placed fifth. In 2010 the girls took fourth, and this year they finished in second place behind Salisbury High School. But the team hasn’t only grown in how they place each year, they’ve also acquired more students, growing from a team of five in 2008 to a team of eight this year. “We have a lot of underclassmen on the team now and if we keep doing well it should [grow more in the years to come,” said Denny. One key player to the team’s success is Brooks, who has committed to golf by giving up soccer and signing last week to play at Elon for the next four years. According to TYGA rankings, Brooks is ranked second in the state and is the top ranked senior based on every tournament
November 18, 2011
SPORTS BRIEFS Soccer falls in 3rd-round OT thriller The boys’ soccer team finished its season Nov. 9, losing 3-2 to the number one ranked 2A team in the state, Carrboro, during the third round of the state playoffs. The Chargers took the lead early in the game and finished the half ahead 1-0 after a header from senior Nate Holst found the back of the net. Then approximately ten minutes into to the second half, senior Connor Lawrence capitalized on an opportunity, giving the Chargers a 2-0 lead. It was not until the game had a little less than 20 minutes left in the second half that Carrboro put in its first goal, then tied the game with 90 seconds left. In the first half of overtime, a Carrboro corner kick was headed toward the Chargers’ goal and bounced into the bottom corner. Northwood made the run to the third round after upsetting No. 1 seed Jordan Mathews 4-3 in penalty kicks. They then cruised passed Franklinton in a 4-2 second round win. Football knocked out in first round After getting off to a 0-5 start, the football team came back to finish second in the conference, win homecoming and win senior night. The Chargers made the playoffs but were defeated in the first round, losing to Franklinton 29-7. “For us to get knocked out of the first round of state playoffs was extremely disappointing and we’re going to work hard to make sure that doesn’t happen next year,” said Coach Bill Hall. To make the playoffs, Northwood needed to win its last two games, which it did, defeating Union Pines and Cedar Ridge. The
Chargers finished the season 4-7. Horton retires as long-time coach Cross-country rounded out its season Nov. 5 with the girls’ team placing 10th in States out of 16 teams. The girls qualified for States by placing third in the regional meet, held Oct. 29. Although the boys didn’t qualify for States, they finished sixth in Regionals. For the boys, Max Griffin and Thomas Duncan were co-MVRs (Most Valuable Runners). Julia Sloane and Maria Vanderford finished as co-MVRs for RON HORTON the girls’ team, and Vanderford was named All-Conference. Coach Ronald Horton announced that after 40 years of coaching, he would retire. “Coach Horton was such an amazing coach. He made practice so much fun and led us [to be our best]. He was a very, very good coach and I’m going to miss him a lot,” said senior runner Yancey Luft. Harris makes verbal commitment to N.C. Central Jacobi Harris recently made a verbal commitment to North Carolina Central to play baseball for the Eagles. Harris, a senior, plays centerfield for Northwood, as well as playing varsity football and basketball. “[I chose N.C. Central because] I wanted to be successful and fly like an eagle,” said Harris. — Compiled by Emily Brooks, Kaitlyn Mattiace & Austin Moody
“Nerf or Nothing”
By Gloria Rodriguez Staff Writer
aren’t any actual rules set up for Nerf wars, but Smith, as the advisor, ensures that the students don’t hurt themselves or each other. Only a few people remain on the gym “I stand around and supervise to keep it floor, strategically hiding behind and maneu- safe,” said Smith. vering around the many barricades, trying to Students find Nerf an entertaining activity avoid being hit by one of the many soaring for many reasons. suction bullets. Suddenly, a player falls, and “The most exciting part of Nerf is when all of the students who have already been you shoot someone and they get out. They shot gasp from the sidelines, waiting to see get mad and that’s always kind of funny,” what will happen next. said junior Clark Streets. Last month, “I like how sophomore you get to shoot Noble LaRocco something, but it’s Masi went to get not like airsoft or approval from paintball; those Principal Chris are very powerBlice to be able to ful,” said LaRocco start a new club at Masi. Northwood: Nerf Although Nerf Club. isn’t known as Blice told him a violent sport, that to start the Northwood stuclub he would dents tend to get need to find pretty involved. enough people in“The competiterested in joining tion is very fierce; the club and find a the rise to be the Gloria Rodriguez/ The Omniscient top Nerfer is very teacher willing to sponsor the club. JORDYN MAYNOR and GRANT WHITAKER competitive,” said After teaming up participate in a Nerf Club event. junior Nathan with gym teacher Stephenson. Lyn Smith, the Nerf Club will two held an interest meeting on Sept. 14. be used as a one of the school’s “Be Active” Fifty nine students signed up to participate activities. in Nerf Club at the meeting, though despite “It’s promoting fitness because the kids that large number, only 30 showed up to are running around, they’re using the first meeting. strategies, it’s a good chance for them to get Nerf is a game in which players shoot out and relieve some stress,” said Smith. suction bullets at each other using Nerf guns. Nerf tournaments will be held multiple “One team tries to shoot out the other times over the course of the year. Nerf wars team’s men and there are different games you are currently held in the gym, but due to the can play; it’s like a combat,” said Smith. start of basketball season, other parts of the Nerf wars can be held any place players school, such as tennis courts, fields or any can run and barriers can be set up. There other open area will soon be used too.
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Every month we’ll showcase an individual and his/her achievements from an ongoing sport. In order to qualify, one must be nominated by his/her coach for athletic ability, outstanding leadership, work ethic and sportsmanship.
Thomas Duncan boys’ cross country
— Compiled by Emily Brooks
Co-MVR (Most Valuable Runner) with Max Griffin. “He has improved drastically since last year. He has made good strides as a runner.” — Forrest Glosson, Jr.
Anna Brown volleyball
A senior leader of the team. This was her fourth year playing volleyball. “She’s a strong back row player and she can take a hit in the face well.” — Laura Shachtman, Jr.
Parrish Marrow football
“He shows good athleticism on the field.” — Maxwell Johnston, Jr.
Courtney Daniel & Maria Hannah Holloway Vanderford Patrick Dufour tennis girls’ cross country This doubles team won soccer Co-MVR (Most Valuable Runa round at Regionals and were one match away from going to states. “Courtney can get a ball that would go over someone’s head, and Hannah can play smart.”— Carmen Reichle, Jr.
“He’s one of the hardest workers on the team and he has the most passion “She’s really hardworking and always pushes everyone for soccer out of everyone. He’s one of our best shootelse to do their best. She pretty much leads the team.” ers on the team.” — Daniel Burwell, Jr. — Jessica Wynne, Sr. ner) with Julia Sloane.
Tanishia Thomas cheerleading
Teammates call her spirited and a leader on the team. “She works really hard and she sticks to her heart.” — Alyssa Gordon, Jr.
Emily Brooks golf
2011 Eastern Regional Champion, Runner up at 1A/2A State Championships and three-time conference Player of the Year. “She is always working on her game and wants to improve, and is a very good leader.”— Maggie Denny, Sr.
On to the Next Level: From Player to Coach
By Austin Moody Staff Writer “Fun, very different from high school, but fun,” said basketball coach Russ Frazier, describing his experience as a college athlete. “[It was] a lot more responsibility, a lot more work.” Frazier is currently the varsity basketball coach at Northwood, but before his coaching career, he attended the University of South Carolina Akin, a Division II college where he got a full athletic scholarship for basketball. Frazier is one of five Northwood coaches who played a college sport. Another such coach is Rick Parks, Northwood’s varsity baseball coach, who took on the challenge of playing two sports at the same time. Parks played football his freshman year and baseball for four years at Guilford College.
Caroline Schneider/The Omniscient
COACH KEVIN TANCEUSZ (left) played Div. III soccer and now coaches at NHS.
“I wanted to go somewhere where I could play both sports and Guilford allowed me to do that,” said Parks. Despite his initial desire to play both sports, he tore his shoulder at his first baseball practice, and after the lengthy recovery process, decided to focus more on baseball, where he thought he would receive more opportunity and time on the field. He reinjured his shoulder his junior year, and spent the season observing the team along side the coach. “I gained a lot of valuable lessons and experience by being able to sit on the bench right beside the coach during those times, looking at exactly how things were viewed in his eyes and how to manage a team,” said Parks. Joseph Kiertekles, varsity coach of boys’ and girls’ tennis, can attest to the time commitment required by college sports. He used to play tennis at Division I Bradley University in Illinois. “It’s a lot of fun to travel around with the team, [but] the playing is the best part, the competition is really good,” said Kiertekles. “When you’re in the Midwest, when you travel with the tennis team it’s not like football or basketball where they fly you everywhere; you’re in a van so it’s a lot of driving.” As Kiertekles worked toward his education degree, he decided to drop tennis because he wasn’t left with enough time to complete his class requirements. One of Northwood’s assistant football coaches, Brian Harrington, who attended Division I NC A&T University, also attests to the time and effort that is expected out of college
athletes. Harrington spent five hours a day with his college football team, and during these times he picked up several insights about the sport. “Coach Harrington’s experience at the college level helps him coach us on better techniques,” said Dexter Jarmon, a senior on Northwood’s football team. “The competition at the college level is so much higher and the stress on technique is so much greater.” Not only did Harrington learn a lot from college football, he also enjoyed it. “I wouldn’t change anything, it was a blast,” said Harrington. “I loved doing it, I loved the camaraderie and I loved the notoriety that comes from being a football player in college.” Kevin Tanceusz, coach of Northwood’s boys’ 2011 JV soccer team and assistant coach of the girls’ 2011 varsity soccer team, agrees that camaraderie is a great part of playing for a college team. He played varsity soccer as a starting defender at Defiance College, a Division Photo courtesy of Brian Harrington III college in Ohio. COACH BRIAN HARRINGTON played college “You’re together from four to six hours a day doing everything together, football for NC A&T. and it’s a great experience, you just asm for the game from playing college soccer bond with them,” said Tanceusz, referring to and strongly recommends it as an experience his college teammates. “You’re like brothers; to his players. you’re absolutely brothers.” “If you have the chance, do it,” he said. Tanceusz continues to make soccer a large “It’s the best experience ever, so many good part of his life, both coaching high school and friends and good times. You go through a lot playing for two competitive club teams in his of ups and downs together, but it’s an absospare time. He picked up a lot of his enthusilutely great experience.”