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Outlook oakton

vol. 47 | issue 1 | 9.28.12

Returning with a Roar Students discuss how they contributed to and interacted with their communities this summer

inside

showtime

spotlight

Find the perfect homecoming dress from online vendors

New teachers share some of their interesting traits and anecdotes


snailmail from the editors

outlook staff adviser lauren luna editors in chief

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reetings and salutations, students of Oakton. We’re so excited to welcome a new school year and with it a new Outlook staff. We know that most of you are reluctantly looking forward to yet another year filled with the horrors of homework, the torture of tests and the suffering of socratic seminars, but this issue will (hopefully) rescue you from the seemingly unbearable stress of school. But first, we’d like to formally introduce ourselves. First we have Madlin Mekelburg, who is as strategic as any captain. She plots and plans meticulously, setting a schedule and sticking to it without hesitation. However, Madlin is not all work and no play. She brightens up the room with stars and the occasional stripe, adding a touch of whimsy to our new room, which has the faint aroma of moldy ceiling tiles. Next is Michelle LoRusso, Goddess of Thunder. Well known for her electric personality, she is sure to strike your fancy. Even when enraged, she is never one to thunder at the class. Rather, her motto is, “walk softly and carry a big hammer.” Marilyn Yang, who is not necessarily black or a widow, is the stealthiest of all. One never knows when she will appear beside you, phone handy with an album of Tom Hiddleston (Loki) pictures in case they should ever be needed. Her keen eye for spelling and grammar mistakes, and expert skills in remedying them, ensure that our paper is perfect. Last, but certainly not least, is Gabriela Driscoll. Although we all know she’d rather be at Panera, soaking in the soft jazz music and sipping a hazelnut coffee, Gabriela’s fiery passion for perfection is much needed in creating the Outlook. Her extra year of experience as an EIC and her “one eye” for design have led her to become the glue binding our editing team together. We hope you’re as excited for the upcoming year as we are. Make sure to follow us on Twitter @Oakton_Outlook and friend us on Facebook for updates.

regards, Gabriela Driscoll Michelle Lorusso Madlin Mekelburg Marilyn Yang

gabriela driscoll michelle lorusso madlin mekelburg marilyn yang

newsworthy editor erin bennett showtime editor carly stonehouse touchdown editor jennifer prosser viewpoint editors sofia crutchfield kim gibbons

spotlight editor karli gillespie indepth editor melanie aguilar online editor oliver lopez-gomez business manager ria bhatia copy editor reina datta photo editor

alana peters

staff writers sunni bean abbey bonin alex driscoll natalie eberhart lauren embroski kenneth hippe jacque groskaufmanis

torri marquis ramya mukalla laura murphy anee nguyen erin preaskorn alex xenos

Editorial Policy The Outlook is an open forum for student expression. Unsigned editorials reflect the collective opinion of the Outlook staff. Signed editorials represent the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Outlook or Oakton High School. Reader opinions are important to the Outlook and contributions are welcome. Make your voice heard by sending us a line about what’s on your mind. Letters to the editor may be sent via email to marilyn.yang@ oaktonoutlook.com or dropped off in Mrs. Luna’s box in the main office or in room 135. The Outlook reserves the right to edit submissions for grammar and content provided the meaning remains unchanged. cover photo by alana peters student body: 2138 circulation: 1300

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snail mail 9.21.12

misa mori


in this issue

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5 couresty of kim lawhorn

alana peters

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sunni bean

courtesy of grace wagner

courtesy of rachelsimmons.com

vol. 47 | issue 1 | 9.28.12

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newsworthy spotlight

indepth

touchdown

4 Veterans 5 appreciation

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looks 15 12 Golf forward

game honors a soldier who served: The Dave Sharrett Memorial Scholarship was awarded to a former cougar athlete.

New year, new faces: Learn about some of the newest members of the Oakton community.

Student saves turtles in Costa Rica: Junior does her best to help the declining tutle population through a Rustic Pathways program over the summer.

showtime

Oakton makes history: summer to its future: reading takes an golf looks for redemption after interesting twist when the two book last season’s choices make for shortcomings. entertaining reads.

contents 9.28.12

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newsbriefs

erin bennett jacque groskaufmanis news editor staff writer

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Emerging leaders program awards scholarship

The Art Honor Society held an interest meeting to decide what they want to focus on during the upcoming year and to show that the students in the Art Honor Society are more than just artists. “In the upcoming months, we want to emphasize what the society does and put ourselves out there,” said Yousef Ahmad, senior. “We are more than just artists; we are also athletes and honor students, and we want a chance to advertise that through the murals.” The Art Honor Society plans to not only create new murals, but also to update the old ones. Make sure to look out for Art Honor Society students working on the murals throughout the year. “We do not want to put down the murals that are already painted,” Ahmad said, “but some people are unhappy with the current murals, and we want to change that. I am excited, and I think it is going to be a good year for Art Honor Society.”

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Veterans appreciation game honors a soldier who served

Art honor society attracts new members to enhance school

erin bennett

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The veterans appreciated football game not only honors those who have served, but also awards the Dave Sharrett Memorial Scholarship to a graduated senior. This year, the scholarship’s recipient was graduate Mike Turminello. “The scholarship goes to someone who basically represents and embodies [Oakton’s] football program,” said Varsity head coach Jason Rowley. “The scholarship is in memory of Dave Sharrett, a former Oakton graduate who was killed in Afghanistan and a person who absolutely loved high school football.” Also during the game, Leadership collected red, white and blue shirts to be handed out right before the national anthem to create a giant American flag in the student section. The shirts were later donated to Goodwill to help those who are less fortunate.

courtesy of dylan hunzeker

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Senior Dylan Hunzeker won a scholarship from the Emerging Leaders Program, or ELP, which focuses on college preparation, leadership skills and public speaking skills. The Emerging Leaders Program is primarily for Hispanics in Northern Virginia and holds meetings about once a week. “During the meetings, we talk about how to write resumes and college essays and are given the opportunity to meet working people from many different industries,” Hunzeker said. The program is free and open to all Latino high school students. The ELP holds both weekly and biweekly meetings to encourage students to enhance their leadership skills. The program currently only has a branch in Arlington, but will be opening a Fairfax branch soon. “Through the program, I was able to meet people from tons of different schools which was great because I was able to see what leadership meant to all sorts of different people,” Hunzeker said.

alana peters

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spotlight

A new year means welcoming new people and new personalities

sunni bean staff writer ramya mukalla staff writer

A new year brings new faces

Along with an increase in the teaching staff came a bunch of new individuals. With vibrant personalities, these new teachers all had something to share about themselves, including fascinating stories and various interests.

all photos by sunni bean

michael greene, marketing

danielle houting, math

I was delivered in a Volkswagen by my father. I used to play three sports a year, and I want my students to look back and say, ‘Mr. Greene helped me so much’. Oh, and I also wear Invisalign.

matthew dunlap, math

I used to travel with American Music Abroad. With band, I went to Austria, Switzerland, Germany, France and Italy. I was in my high school and college’s band; I played the flute and the piccolo.

elizabeth fortenberry, english

Here’s the thing- I hate running. But I’ve run the Pittsburgh marathon for a few years now because my brothers and I are really competitive. I also coach freshmen boys basketball.

I typically enjoy running 5-10ks, I have a pudgy cat named Lelu, and my favorite author is Ernest Hemingway. I just graduated from William and Mary and I love the learning attitude in this school.

Freshman first impressions

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he new crop of freshmen has entered the home of the Cougars, and they now have to get ready for the wild and crazy roller coaster of high school. Some freshmen students were already familiar with the school, thanks to the help of Oakton’s summer program Jump Start, while to others it was like walking into the unknown. Freshman year may be an exciting year, but it can also be a stressful one for some. “I was nervous about coming to high school in the beginning. I went to a small private school for middle school, so a public high school is really different,” said Caitlin Becker, freshman. “Everyone here is really nice and has welcomed me, so I feel a lot better.” High school has commonly been stereotyped as having massive social cliques, with no ability for anyone to break through and join. “When I came to high school, I was worried about the cliques that there might

reina datta copy editor

be,” said Jenifer Hymanson, freshman. “I was pleasantly surprised that Oakton is not like that. The teachers are really nice.” The upperclassmen can play a big role in the freshman experience, and they know the ropes of being a freshman. “Some kids in the freshman class are really small this year,” said Alex James, junior. “I see a lot of them running to their classes and it reminds me of when I was a freshman. I was worried about being the youngest at the school,” James said. “I call them ‘hobbits’ because some of them are so short,” said Areeba Mazhar, junior. “They think they are cooler than they actually are, although we were probably the same way when we were freshmen,” Mazhar said. Listen up freshmen, it’s your first year at Oakton. Take a deep breath, because for the next four years, this school will be like a second home.

Tips to survive freshman year “Join clubs early, because then you have your friends with you and you have people to rely on.”

- neda noori, junior

“Be social and talk to your teachers. That will help you succeed in high school.” - blake hooper, senior “Get to know your teachers, because it will help you later in high school when you want teacher recommendations.” - julia brown, junior

spotlight

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his past summer, three Oakton students working with GLA (Global Leadership Adventures) had the opportunity to travel to the Dominican Republic for a unique volunteer experience. Juniors Dilara Long, Megan Cooney and Jamie Ryan spent three days in the Dominican Republic building a school using plastic bottles, chicken wire and concrete. The school was built for 250 Dominican children who, before this project, attended school for 30 minutes a day in a cramped garage space. The objective of the project was to build a sustainable school while decreasing pollution. The project started with the Dominican community collecting 30,000 plastic bottles for the base of the walls of the school. “We used plastic soda bottles for material inside the walls, then chicken wire to keep the bottles stable,” said Cooney. “Then poured cement over the chicken wire so in the end it looked like a normal wall.”

Students build a school in the Dominican Republic out of plastic bottles

By using plastic bottles, GLA put good use to waste materials while also saving money by replacing most of the concrete in a wall with plastic bottles. The girls worked on the project for three days, but the entire process took four months to complete. “[The project] was finished shortly after we left, but before we departed we made significant progress,” Ryan said. As a result of volunteering for this project, these girls and all of the students involved with GLA have made a substantial difference in the lives of 250 Dominican students by providing them with a school with six large classrooms and tremendous improvements to their education. “I got the experience of what it’s like in a Third World country and how hard it is for them.” Said Dilara. “I realized how lucky we are in America to have everything: a free education, unlimited water and shelter.”

courtesy of megan cooney

indepth

Bottled up

Cooney, left, poses with a young girl from a Haitian Refugee Camp in the Dominican Republic.

natalie eberhart staff writer

Six students attend Virginia Girls State

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ix Oakton students were among the 620 rising seniors who participated in Virginia Girls State, a “seven-day mock government program where [participants] learned about civics and American government,” according to the American Legion Auxiliary (ALA). The ALA, which is dedicated to serving military veterans and their families, has been sponsoring the weeklong summer program since 1946, and this year’s Virginia Girls State was held in Farmville, Virginia. The selected students were Jackie Akunda, Kat Fleckenstein, Dylan Hunzeker, Joanna Ro, Melanie Aguilar and Emily Yaremchuk. “When I went into it I was kind of unsure about what to expect,” said Joanna Ro, senior. However, the program’s objections became clearer once she arrived.

“Basically 600 girls are split into two parties, and then everyone was split into 14 cities with about 30 to 40 girls in each city,” Ro said. “Then we ran our own government.” In the middle of the week, once city governments were established, the state officials had to be elected through each party. “I didn’t find out we could run for positions until the day before I left. I knew I wanted to run for Attorney General, but I didn’t think anyone would vote for me,” Ro said. “But then I got there and realized how nice everyone was. No one in my city was running for Attorney General, so I thought maybe I’d try.” While Ro was directly involved in the campaigning process and eventually became her party’s Attorney General nominee, Emily Yaremchuk enjoyed

working on campaign posters and helping her city. “I was my city clerk,” Yaremchuk said. “Everybody was running for something, and I have pretty good handwriting.” Yaremchuk also enjoyed learning about the other girls in the program. “I think my favorite part was getting to meet new people. I found the social and cultural differences in Virginia very interesting; I didn’t realize how many people had southern accents,” Yaremchuk joked. In addition to meeting participants, the students were also exposed to a variety of speakers such as Gov. Bob McDonnell and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling. “It was funny when Gov. McDonnell read the letters [to Girls State participants] from Boys State,” Ro said. indepth staff

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stanford.edu

Senior spends summer at Stanford

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Kwaku Ofori-Atta, senior, spent this past summer at Stanford University for its annual Stanford Summer Session.

torri marquis staff writer

hile most Oakton students were celebrating the loads. beginning of summer last June, senior Kwaku “On an average day I’d probably leave for my classes at one Ofori-Atta was traveling across the country to and be finished by five because all of my classes were in the take part in more of what he had just finished: school. On June afternoon.” 23, Stanford University in Palo Alto, California welcomed The program lasted for two months, but the students did over 500 High School Summer College Students in its annual not spend every single waking hour doing work. According to Stanford Summer Session. At this summer program, students Ofori-Atta, there was plenty of time to have fun. could take summer courses and meet courtesy of ariadna grinyo “There’s Palo Alto right there; it’s students from around the world with like a five minute bike ride away. similar interests while living on StanI went out to dinner a lot because ford’s 8,180 acre campus. eating out was better than cafeteria “I got a letter in the mail about it, food. San Francisco was about an hour and it just seemed like a cool thing to away, so on weekends you’d just go do,” said Ofori-Atta when asked about and chill in the city.” what motivated him to sign up for the Most students would never even program. “I’ve liked Stanford for a dream of voluntarily signing up for while.” two extra months of school, but to Students had the option of taking a Ofori-Atta, his experience was much variety of courses according to their more than just academic. interests. They had to create and plan “My experiences passed my expectheir own schedules, much like college tations by far. I thought it would be students have to do. more like an academic thing, but I “I took creative nonfiction, data mind ended up having a lot of fun. I met analysis and public speaking. People awesome people who I still keep in Kwaku Ofori-Atta (second from the right) spends the didn’t take more than five [classes],” day in San Francisco with his new friends. touch with.” explained Ofori-Atta about the class preaskorn Student saves turtles in Costa Rica erin staff writer

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any students consider doing community service over the summer. One of these students, junior Grace Wagner, traveled to Costa Rica in an effort to help save their population of turtles through the Rustic Pathways program from June 26 to July 11. “I have always wanted to get out and see the world and this trip was the perfect opportunity. It was really fun,” Wagner said. The trip’s total cost was about $5,000 including plane fare. “We landed in the capitol, San Jose, but we spent time in Ostional, Samara, Puerto and Carrilo,” Wagner said. Once they arrived, the volunteers were told that they were not allowed to touch the turtles; however, they got within inches of them. “There was one night, Arribada, which means ‘the arrival’ in Spanish, when

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thousands of turtles go onto the beach at night,” Wagner said. To help the turtles, Wagner and the other volunteers cleaned beaches and cleared the nests. “Unlike in America, pollution is not as big of an issue,” Wagner said. “Poaching is more of a problem. However, the biggest danger to turtles is the development of beaches because the lights scare away the turtles.” The sixteen day trip was packed with all sorts of activities. Though the turtles were the main focus of the trip, volunteers also worked to help the local community. They helped school children with getting supplies, and raising money. “My biggest takeaway was probably just how different people live in other countries, and how it’s different than we think,” Wagner said. This trip was also a good academic experience.

courtesy of grace wagner

An Olive Ridley turtle approaches on the beach in Costa Rica.

“It gave us a chance to practice our Spanish because almost all of the guides spoke Spanish, as did the locals,” Wagner said. Wagner would eagerly do it again, and explains that Rustic Pathways has similar trips in many other countries. “I definitely recommend this trip to others. It was a ton of fun, and just a good overall experience.”


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viewpoint

Oakton students share their opinions on controversial topics at Oakton and in our community

kim gibbons

Summer break: choose your adventure

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t’s been about three weeks since the close of summer, and too. While these students may frustrate their parents with most of us have spent that time reminiscing over our longwhat may be considered laziness and apathy, that is an unfair lost days of rest and relaxation or volunteer work and jobs, statement. Summer is called a vacation for a reason. It is a two whichever route we decided to take. The conversations between month block of time between school years that allows students students over the first few days of school are always interesting; to do whatever they want. If they choose to relax and catch up while one student may have sat at home and watched TV their on sleep rather than to fill their time with multiple community entire summer, others may have taken summer classes or gone activities, fine. Their actions should not be scrutinized. on mission trips to foreign countries. The opportunities that we Relaxation is just as viable an option as work. can choose to take advantage of over our summer vacation are One of the most important things to consider when deciding limitless, but some students prefer to play rather than work. what to do with your summer, however, is balance. While So, what is really the better option? relaxing sounds fantastic, too much chill time The Staff Editorial is around the house can cause extreme boredom. On one hand, as students get closer to college application deadlines, these kinds of committing to too many work the official opinion of Conversely, application-boosters become crucial. Colleges opportunities and community activities can the Oakton Outlook result in stress levels that surpass even those look for students who will commit to things outside of school and take advantage of every of the school year. The best thing you can do is opportunity they are given. Jobs, internships and volunteer work find just one or two things that you enjoy or that mean a lot to in the same area of interest that a student plans to pursue as a you and commit to them. Chances are, if you enjoy them, then major in college are even better, especially for specialized and you won’t feel so much like you are working; rather, you’ll find competitive fields like engineering. your activities somewhat relaxing and pleasurable. However, many students choose to pursue activities for reasons Whatever you choose to do with your summer, you have other than college applications. Whether it’s a camp counselor to make it enjoyable. While some summer activities are not position just for fun, a job for spending money or volunteering optional (such as summer assignments), the majority of what for a good cause, these opportunities can enrich a students you do during the summer is all by choice. Yes, as you get summer while still being enjoyable. Students meet new people closer to applying to college, you should probably start filling and learn more about the things that they care about. The at least some of your free time with whatever you think will college application factor is just a bonus. They are able to choose boost your college applications, but even then, there should be a what they want to be involved in, which provides a nice break balance between work and play, as you don’t have much time to from the school year and its mandatory classes. relax before you are back at school and working hard. Summer On the other end of the spectrum, there are students who do vacation is your time to do what you want to do, and it is up to virtually nothing all summer. They sleep in past noon, watch you to make the most of it. movies, stay up until 3 a.m. and repeat. This is perfectly fine

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touchdown

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Concussion crisis sweeps through Oakton athletics

jennifer prosser

very afternoon the training room is flooded “I got my concussion a month ago at practice,” with athletes waiting for their time with said junior field hockey player Dilara Long. “I can’t Oakton’s athletic trainers, Paul Rupp and even remember what happened. Kelly Robertson. There are athletes getting taped, “At practices I just sit out and watch. I still have athletes being stretched and then there are athletes bad headaches and mostly do half days of school.” that make up the infamous concussion club. Field hockey’s concussion streak continued when According to the Center for Disease Control, the next week senior Jenny Bailey was hit by a over one million high school athletes experience stray shot during warm-ups concussions each year, with before a game. A week after the rate having doubled Bailey’s incident, senior in the last decade. Oakton Annalise Capalbo was struck has not escaped this rising in the head by a ball during trend as athletes in sports practice. such as football, field hockey, As demonstrated by volleyball, cheer leading, Long, Bailey and Capalbo, dance and even cross country concussions often occur have reported concussions this without the loss of season. consciousness. Common Football has the highest symptoms to be aware of are national average for Long reenacts her blow to the head and confusion, nausea, headaches, concussions with a rate dizziness, sensitivity to light subsequent concussion. Practices are of 76.8 per 100,000 sports and noise, and feeling sluggish. the most common place for injury. exposures. While this may seem “Concussions are way too low, it is estimated that about common in the training room,” one mild concussion happens per game. said Robertson. “These athletes need to be careful.” At Oakton, however, field hockey currently has jennifer prosser laura murphy the highest varsity concussion rate while varsity sports editor staff writer football is miraculously concussion free.

A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury caused by a bump, hit, or jolt to the head that shifts the brain inside the skull. Although generally classified as mild trauma, concussions can have dangerous cumulative effects such as chronic headaches, debilitating memory loss, and clinical depression. empowher.com

Golf looks forward to the future

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Focusing on the ball, freshman golfer Nick Wyatt practices his drive at the Oak Marr Driving Range.

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s the varsity golf team’s regular season recently came to a close, post-season thoughts were on everyone’s minds. Motivation was created from last year’s failure to make the Northern Region Tournament, and the team will look for redemption this year. Freshman Mickey Axelson and the rest of Oakton varsity golf have high hopes for the rest of their post-season. “I believe that we have a strong varsity team and that we have a good opportunity to do very well against our opposing high school teams,” Axelson said. Senior captain John McGuinness and standout Ho Jae Lee provide the needed veteran support for the team both on and off the course. However, the Cougars also have hopes for a solid future with Axelson. “It’s very humbling to watch and learn from

courtesy of kim lawhorn

Freshman provides depth for aspiring program

the older and stronger players,” Axelson said. “But it also gives me confidence because I know that if I work hard I’ll be in their spot and leading the team just like they are right now.” Axelson looks to improve and learn from the more experienced upperclassmen. Young talent is important for the Oakton golf team because they are looking for future leaders that will take McGuiness and Lee’s places. Axelson picked up his first club around the age of five, and ever since then he has been looking to improve and perform to the best of his abilities. “I have received many criticisms and helpful hints that I believe will later make me a much better player than what I am now,” Axelson said. kenneth hippe staff writer


Oakton’s olympians

From traveling across the country for the 2012 Olympic trials in Omaha, to traveling across the ocean to London, Oakton helped support team USA as they took home the gold. alex driscoll karli gillespie staff writer

spotlight editor

Cougar competitors

megan byrnes, freshman “I swam the 100 fly, 200 fly, 400IM, 50 free, 100 free, 100 back and the 200 back. It was a very cool experience for me. It was amazing to see the top athletes and other Olympians and be at the same meet as them. I roomed with Katie Ledecky when I was there, and it was really special to see her make it to London. I met Missy Franklin and Dana Vollmer there too. I trained for three hours a day, six days a weeks [to prepare for the trials]. Even though I didn’t make it to London, I felt that it was a great accomplishment, and it is motivation for me to continue.”

janet hu, junior

Cougar spectators

courtesy of janet hu

“I swam in the 200 back with Janet. It was my first time at the trials, and it was crazy. The pool was bigger than anything I’ve ever seen; the warm-down pool was the same size as our normal pool. I was nervous walking out [to the event], but I was also excited. So many people were there. I got to see Ryan Lochte, Michael Phelps, Dana Vollmer, it was so amazing. I had to practice everyday and work really hard. But a lot of the preparation was mental. I had just made the age cut for the Olympics by a few months. And even though I didn’t make it, it was really exciting just being able to swim at the trials.”

sarah sheridan, sophomore

courtesy of sarah sheridan

“I saw three events at the Olympics this summer: the women’s soccer finals, the men’s soccer semifinals and the men’s basketball bronze medal game. It was really exciting seeing the games live, and the crowd was just amazing; they definitely made the experience. To me the most exciting event was the women’s soccer finals when the U.S. women defeated Japan and won the gold. [For this event] I painted my face with the American flag, and I was dressed in all USA clothes. I was really proud when they won. The crowd made it the best, because everybody, no matter what country they were from, cheered for them [when they won].”

margaret shark, art teacher courtesy of michael madrid

“This was the third Olympic Games that I had been to. Previously I went to Athens and Salt Lakes. But this time I really went there for the art museums. I was able to see the men’s marathon race in front of Buckingham Palace. All the Olympics are always upbeat, colorful and full of energy. People are so proud of their country, and you saw this through all of the impromptu celebrations on sidewalks. The local pride was different; in Athens they were over-the-top proud, while the Londoners were very touchdown polite and excited but more reserved.” 9.28.12

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showtime

Taste Quest: Chew on this Along with pencils and pens, gum is a school staple. Here is our guide to this season’s most popular brands and flavors.

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media mix

rigley’s Juicy Fruit gum is definitely not worth the buy. While the flavors are alright, they are lost within the first 10 minutes of chewing. The yellow stick of gum is nothing in comparison to some of its competitors. The mysterious flavor is extremely sweet and resembles that of Children’s Tylenol. It also loses texture while turning into a mush that stimulates gag reflexes. If you are one of those gum chewers who chews for long periods of time, Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit is not for you.

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rigley’s 5 Cobalt gum is packed with intense flavor and can be very strong initially but weakens over time. The minty flavor lasts for hours and is sure to keep your breath smelling fresh for a while. None of its competitors can compare to it in longevity and presentation. The packaging is very attention-grabbing with its cool designs. If you like long lasting gum, Wrigley’s 5 Colbalt is for you.

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rident Layers Strawberry Citrus starts with a blast of strawberry and then has an even stronger citrus aftertaste. There isn’t enough gum to blow any bubbles, and the elasticity is weak. The gum is really dense and gets harder to chew the longer you have it in your mouth. The flavor lasts for a good amount of time before wearing off with a final touch of strawberry. The texture is smooth, but has a gritty feel when you chew it for an extended period of time. Overall, this gum is more a summer dessert than a fall treat.

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xtra’s Dessert Delights Apple Pie gum smells heavenly. It starts off really strong, with a lot of apple and not so much cinnamon. It doesn’t lose its flavor too fast as it turns into a diluted apple. The texture is very smooth, but the gum becomes dense and harder to chew. For such a flavorful gum, the after taste is minimal yet pleasant. With just a hint of apple and sweet cinnamon, your breath will end up smelling like the perfect fall treat.

lauren embroski staff writer

anee nguyen staff writer

The Divergent series

courtesy of official websites

abbey bonin staff writer

BOOKS

Diverge into the newest futuristic series of the school year

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for short, has to choose which faction she would like to be a part of. However, factions are not permitted to associate with other factions, so Tris has to choose whether she wants “family or faction.” This novel never ceases to keep a reader’s attention. It always has the reader guessing what Tris’s next decision will be. Every chapter she has to make a choice, so by the end of the book, her choices make up a full and developed personality. This book is a story of adventure and self-discovery, emphasizing the importance of individualism.

amazon.com

et in a dystopian future, Veronica Roth’s new book, “Divergent,” is a grim warning of what the world could become. Similar to Suzanne Collins’ “Hunger Games,” “Divergent” is set in the future with separate factions comparable to the districts of Panem. The difference in “Divergent” is that the factions are categorized by personality as opposed to talent. There are five different factions: Abnegation, the selfless; Amity, the peaceful; Candor, the honest; Dauntless, the fearless; and Erudite, the intelligent. The main character, Beatrice, or “Tris”


Dress to impress

carly stonehouse showtime editor

Find the perfect dress for Homecoming 2012

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o you like very unique backs and unusual prints? This is the store for you. Social Butterfly is known for its embellished dresses for both Homecoming and Prom. Visit the store in Manassas, Virginia and buy the latest designs from GiGi, La Femme, Tony Bowls, Riva, Faviana, Alyce, Jovani, Party Time Formals, Dave & Johnny for your closet this year.

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f you’re looking for a varied amount of design and styles ranging in prices from expensive to reasonably cheap, Promgirl.com seems to be the perfect solution. The online store has tons of options to help you make the perfect buy. With dresses to fit every occasion, Promgirl gives you enough options to create the ideal look of the year whether causal or extravagant.

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ooking for something eye-grabbing and sleek? BCBG is stocked with a diverse selection of dresses varying from simple to sleek and extravagant. BCBG offers dresses with intricate details at a reasonable price that will make everyone stop and stare. BCBG is known for being a popular store for homecoming dresses, so keep that in mind.

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on’t feel like paying for a designer dress on retail? Rent it. Rent the Runway gives you the opportunity to get the designer dress of your dreams for a few nights without paying the ridiculous retail price. Considering that most people never touch their homecoming dress again after the dance, this makes an affordable option while keeping your closet clean. All you have to do is make a free account online and then start clicking away.

Check out these store websites: BCBG.com, socialbutterfly.com, renttherunway.com, promgirl.com

Oakton makes history

BOOKS

Interesting summer reading is a pleasant surprise

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ome would call it a stroke of luck. Some would call it a miracle. But the select few who actually read the summer reading assignment can tell you that something magical happened this summer. This is the turn of the century, folks. We actually enjoyed the summer reading. Everyone please stand up, turn to face administration and commence a slow clap. I sense a keen new future at Oakton. After our trust was weakened by the 2011 school-wide “Salt” assignment (which I will refer to as The Book That Must Not Be Named), we were weary of starting this year’s assignment. But the general consensus of those who read either “Outliers” or “The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth” (or, wait for it, both) was: “that was actually pretty good.” History was made. Much unlike The Book That Must Not Be Named, “Outliers” and “Geeks” were chock full of anecdotes that have sparked discussion. We’ve actually had some interesting discussions about “Outliers” in my fourth period advisory about our opinions on the validity of Gladwell’s claims. We talked about which theories we could believe and which ones were lacking. We talked about how the ideas applied to our own lives and how they changed our views of success.

sofia crutchfield viewpoint editor

We did not talk about the science of brine ponds. The bottom line, Oakton, is: you done good. You provided us with a stimulating sociological read over the summer. For that, I am willing to begin forgiving you for the Salt debacle. You are so welcome.

courtesy of the authors’ official websites

showtime

9.28.12

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Oakton Outlook 2012-2013 Issue 1