vanston i an E February 28, 2020
Evanston Township High School
Vol. 103, Issue 6
2 - news
Students explore Japanese language, culture through school trip By Sari Oppenheimer Staff Writer On Jan. 25, the ETHS Japanese class departed on a two week trip to Japan to explore the language, culture of the country and to have a once in a life-time experience. The 2020 Japan trip included 20 students, both juniors and seniors, and two chaperones. This trip highlighted the students abilities to use Japanese and cultural knowledge to explore the country and take their education to the next level. “Cultural immersion and language building were the two main purposes,” junior Evan Burns said. The application process for the Japan trip began last school year and, once accepted, the Japanese students began planning fundraising opportunities in order to raise money for their trip. Along with fundraising, students were split into groups to plan half day adventures around Tokyo. Planning these day trips gave students the opportunity to learn how to navigate the Japanese transit system, find places to eat and organize fun activities for the whole group. The trip was split in two, where one week was dedicated to sightseeing and tourist attractions while the other week was dedicated to staying with a Japanese host family. During their first week in Japan, students toured the cities of Tokyo, Hirosaki, Aomoriya and Aomori. While traveling between these cities, students took the infamous bullet train, known in Japanese as a shinkansen.
“In Tokyo, we went shopping and visited a couple shrines,” junior Aidan Broy said. “In the more rural places, we stayed in hot springs hotels and got to visit these hot springs baths.” The cultural immersion aspect of the Japanese trip involved touring many sites such as the Meiji Shrine and exploring Meiji era
America,” senior Aurora Liston said. In the second half of the trip, the students traveled to the city of Urasa to stay with host families and interact with Japanese students at KJ school. “We actually stayed with a host family, and that was a really cool experience because I got to live with my host family and bonded
Photo courtesy of Michael VanKrey.
history and its involvement in the creation of modern Japanese society. While exploring the city of Tokyo, the students furthered their understanding of the many cultural aspects of the country such as Japanese cuisine. “I tried so many interesting foods that I just probably would not have tried or eaten in
a lot with them,” Liston said. One aspect of staying with a Japanese host family was students being able to use their Japanese language skills to interact and bond with their host families. Before arriving at the train station to meet their host families, there was a lot of nervous excitement among the
students. Prior to going to Japan, the students had met their host families via email and text, but had yet to interact face to face. However, meeting their host families upon arriving in Japan made for a different, more personal experience. “We get there and they’re all standing in this crowd with signs and we round this corner, and they’re all standing there cheering and clapping. It was so much fun and you just knew at that point that you were going to feel welcomed,” Burns said. In addition to staying with host families, students were given the opportunity to become exchange students in a Japanese school that, in turn, sent around 20 Japanese students to the United States for an exchange program with ETHS. KJ has been a sister school for ETHS since 1992. “It’s a really empowering time for the kids; it makes all the language learning they are doing very real... [and lets them see] how kids across the world view the world,” Michael VanKrey, Japanese language teacher and exchange coordinator, said. “The school is very different from ours... but the kids make really good connections and learn a lot.” The ETHS Japan trip and exchange program offers students an experience that extends outside the classroom. “Even more than the language stuff, it’s finding out their place in the world and figuring out who they are,” VanKrey said. Contributor: Avi Shapira, Staff Writer
Students create Excite club to continue legacy of former program By Zachary Bahar, Louise Bond News Editor, Staff Writer In 2015, Northwestern cut the funding for Project Excite which, according to a Longitudinal Study of Project Excite conducted at Northwestern and published in 2017, provided extracurricular education programming to talented “underrepresented culturally, linguistically, and ethnically diverse” students in District 65 and District 202. With the last bridge program of students entering ETHS occurring this year, physics teacher Mark Vondracek and a group of students have formed the Excite Club with the aim to continue on the legacy of the historic program. “For as long as people can remember you’ve had the academic achievement gap, and the big question has always been coming through the same schools, same teachers, same resources, same opportunities, why would there be a significant gap between primarily white students and students of color,” Vondracek, who also began the original program in 2000 alongside former teachers John Benson and Ron Selke, said. The achievement gap has long been a researched aspect of American education, first being mentioned in the 1966 Coleman Report. However, according to Vondracek, few efforts have effectively in addressing the gap, with Excite being one of the few that did. “Research shows that kids from low-income backgrounds come to school in kindergarten behind their more advantaged peers and it’s not that they aren’t capable but they lack the exposure… They start at a disadvantage and don’t catch up,” Paula Olszewski-Kubilius, Director of Northwestern’s Center of Talent Development (CTD), said. The goal of Excite was to ensure that these students were able to catch up. Each year, a cohort of third grade students was from five District 65 elementary schools (selected based on the Naglieri Nonverbal Ability Test) and over the next six years participated over 600 hours of after-school, weekend and summer programs both at the high school and through the CTD. “We were working to make sure these little kids who had academic potential were fully developing their talent. They were clearly kids with high potential for academic achievement so this is part of our work,” Olszewski-Kubilius said. During its 19-year run, Excite gave students access to the high school, Northwestern
and the resources that they offered. “I was in third grade so I probably wasn’t thinking about the big picture, but it was really fun,” junior Jahnese Adams, current Excite Club secretary, said. Former members also addressed the importance of being in an education space at a young age with other students of color. “It was awesome to be learning in an environment with a lot of people who looked like me, other minorities,” junior and former Project Excite member Mika Parisien said. “I would say it was really interesting and a little scary going into it, but it was also one of the
However, in 2015 Northwestern’s School of Education and Social Policy opted to cut funding for the program, incorporating it into the NU Academy—a program that “provides college access and enrichment programming for Evanston Township High School students,” according to their website. “I understand that it’s important to work with kids when they get into high school because there is this issue that kids of color don’t get enough college counseling to get into schools that are good for them, but I also think that if you’re going to address achievement gaps you need to start with younger
“It was awesome to be learning in an enviornment with a lot of people who looked like me, other minorities...I learned so much from it.” - junior, former Project Excite member Mika Parisien best experiences ever, and I learned so much from it.” While the program was not designed as a research study, the data collected demonstrates the effects of the program and two papers based off of it won the National Association for Gifted Children’s Paper of the Year Award. “This was a program designed to help students [but] we did the best we could to see if we were having an impact, and the data did show that the students grew a lot and caught up to the high-performing students in District 65,” Olszewski-Kubilius said. One set of data collected in 2009 shows that a cohort of Excite students increased 76 points on the math portion of the Illinois Standards Achievement Test and 60 points on the reading portion between third and seventh grade bringing the difference between them and the average white student to within five points. For contrast, by seventh grade the score difference between a student in Excite and the average Black student was 40 points. This trajectory continued into ETHS with more than 76% of students placed in above-grade-level math classes, contrasted with 50% of minority students not in Excite.
kids,” Olszewski-Kubilius said. The last of the students in Project Excite entered ETHS this past August, and Vondracek began discussing student-led revivals of the program in his classes—the first club meeting was held on Jan. 22. “Most kids are convinced when they see the data. Last year’s data both here at the high school and in District 65 is still the same gap as when I started here. All the programs that we have and all the things that we’ve tried, it just hasn’t made a dent,” Vondracek said. Senior Mayher Matharu is a board member of the new Excite Club; she’s specifically in charge of mentoring and recruitment. “I think right now we need to focus on the kids that were kind of dropped by District 65 and Northwestern,” Matharu said. “Once we can help them get back on the right track that we created for them in the first place, I think after that we can start focusing on the impact on ETHS in general.” One way the Excite Club is planning to empower District 65 students is by doing community celebrations where they celebrate their achievements on social media. “We’re celebrating kids, mostly younger kids, achievements and the smaller things
they’re doing. Not just winning an award, but if their grade went up a lot even if they were combatting something at home or if they were third place winner at the science fair and had never taken a science class before, things like that,” Matharu said. A crucial part of the original program was peer mentors and role models, something that will be continuing into the future both through student mentorship programs and pairing parents of low-income students and students of color at District 65 with those at District 202 so they are able to share resources and advice to support one another. In addition to mentorship, the club will have a focus on social-emotional learning, something which, according to Vondracek, is becoming ever more essential in a world becoming ever-more filled with change and outrage. “The data is pretty clear that by working on social-emotional learning skills the bad things [depression, suicidal thoughts, anxiety] go down and academic achievement goes up. The learning environment improves if kids get along better and that translates to the community,” Vondracek said. The club plans to address these issues through a combination of learning teams, where students take turns checking in with others to monitor their academic and emotional progress, and journaling, where students will write about topics including what they are thinking, feeling and what they are appreciative for. A main goal of the club moving forward is to expand the base of members who would be interested in doing community work around the achievement gap. “One thing we really need to prioritize is general reaching out,” junior and board member Eleanor Allen said. “Really connecting to and reaching out to students, not just in the Chem/Phys program, [but] to all students that think that this is a priority.” Although the club is in early phases of development, the goals it has set and the principles left behind by Project Excite will guide the work that it does moving into the future. “The achievement gap isn’t just going to be magically fixed in a year,” Adams said. “It’ll be a long time before we see results, but to feel like something is being done and that people are receiving the help and support they need to get to where they can be… we can start to see and feel more of a change.”
news - 3
Behind the scenes of ETHS’ Black History Month celebration By Sophia Weglarz Executive Editor Beyond the vibrantly-colored doors with photos and illustrations of Black history heroes and the countless students and staff donning bright and brilliant hues to rep their culture, the 29-day celebration that is Black History Month at ETHS is more than just a month of empowerment. “Black history is American history. It’s part of the history of this country,” Assistant Superintendent and Principal Marcus Campbell said. “I’m always shocked and amazed at the Black history that I learned on the South Side and at a Black school with Black kids and Black teachers that in some districts and other schools, they don’t know.” While many of the activities are a celebration of what it means to be Black, several are more focused on learning and understanding. Staff members involved in planning like Extracurricular Activities Coordinator Denise Clarke wanted the activities to be acces-
sible to all students, with activities happening nearly every day. “It’s important for ETHS to provide a variety of different activities because we have a variety of different cultures,” Clarke said. “Black looks so different, and we have so many different diasporas here: Carribean, Afro-Latinos, biracial students who all want to be included in something and in a month that celebrates our Blackness.” Countless hours of planning goes into the activities meant to affirm Black history and culture. From the hip-hop battles in the cafeterias to a pop-up shop that will be held in the Main Lobby today, where students will learn entrepreneurial experience for small businesses to showcase and sell merchandise for the ETHS community, Black History Month festivities were the product of hours of student and staff collaboration. Several students also underscored the benefit to having an institution like ETHS provide a wide range of activities to celebrate
Black History Month. “It’s important for us as a school to acknowledge the past and what has happened in our history so we can move forward into the future,” sophomore Jett Watson said. While Black History month is just a short 29-days, several teachers are working to incorporate Black history and empowerment into their respective curriculums. “[James Baldwin said that] ‘if we tell Black people the truth about their history, then we are also telling white people the truth about their history,’ and so a lot of times we are fed these lies about how great these white people were and how insignificant these other people are. If we teach history as it happens and show how everyone contributed, that evens the playing field, and also it can work to end white supremacy because white folks won’t think they are the be all end all to everything and that they have done everything. They haven’t,” African American Studies and Humanities teacher Ganae McAlpin
Left to right: Junior Nakaiya Bias performs spoken word poem, English teacher Abdel Shakur emcees rap battle, Senior Nia Dillard and Associate Principal Keith Robinson pose at Black Honor Roll Breakfast.
said. “Instead of Black students thinking, ‘Oh these are things for white people,’ if we teach these students, no, these are things for Black people, and let me show you that in history, so people can see themselves more and have bigger dreams because if you can’t see it, you can’t be it.” In addition to that sentiment, many students have expressed interest in seeing Black history incorporated into their curriculum. “Teachers should [incorporate Black history more into their curriculums], especially during Black History Month, but all throughout the year too,” senior Gabby Horton said. “I feel like within any school system, [there is a lack of teaching about Black history,] not even just ETHS. [The importance of expanding that narrative] is to let people know that they’re more than just ancestors of slaves, but I do feel like the Civil Rights Movement is something important to learn about too. There’s so much more to know that just slavery and the civil rights movement.”
Photo courtesy of Nia Dillard.
4 - news
District 65 parents discuss How To Be an Antiracist
Letter from your Student Reps Hi ETHS! We are Echo Allen, your Student Representative to the School Board, and Isaac Slevin, your Vice Student Representative. This column is an update on Student Union, the School Board and administration, as well as upcoming ways that you can engage! Who we are and what we do As a non-voting member of the School Board, the Student Rep has the ability to comment on Board proposals and decisions, voice student concerns directly to board members, and orchestrate student-led policy proposals. The second key role of the Student Rep and Vice Student Rep is leading Student Union, a group of student activists and advocates that meets every Thursday in W311. We work on policy solutions to school issues. Student Union After we collected the experiences, feedback, and ideas you shared with us at the Witherbell Forum in December, Student Union is deciding on projects to work on in the spring. The most popular ideas you shared with us were reforming the impact of finals on semester grades, establishing more all-gender restrooms and banning homework over school breaks. As we move forward with some of these ideas, we welcome your feedback! Our mission is to best represent the evolving student experience by empowering student voice. Administration Last month, District 65 published its annual student achievement report, which details student academic performance broken down by race and sex, among other demographics. In 2014, Districts 65 and 202 committed to a 12-year goal of all students reading at grade level by graduation. Despite this goal, January’s District 65 achievement report and November’s District 202 report revealed the continuation racial disparities in education. According to District 65’s report, just 33 percent of black students meet annual college readiness benchmarks in English/ language arts compared to 83 percent of white students. The trend continues at ETHS where 37 percent of black students meet one or more college readiness benchmarks in English/language arts compared to 92 percent of white students. This isn’t a failure of students to do classwork, its a failure of Evanston education systems to educate all students. This is an issue that students experience every day everywhere from classrooms to college applications. If you’re a student who experiences these disparities and wants to work towards eliminating them please come to a Student Union As mentioned previously, the tardy policy and the ways detentions are served will be different for the 2020-21 school year. This past year we’ve been meeting with a committee of administrators, teachers, deans and members of the IT department. Our goal is to reform the current tardy and detention policies to increase the amount of time students have with teachers and address the inconsistencies caused by current policy. In order for us to address student needs, we need more student input. We’re planning a tardy policy focus group, where students are welcome to share their exeriences, feedback and ideas. Help us make this policy change an effective one. Until next time… Stay cool. We are excited to positively impact our school with you all!
Photo by Zachary Bahar
By Rebecca Lustig Staff Writer Since the beginning of this school year, District 65 parents have gathered regularly as part of the Next Steps series to understand how racism impacts the schools and address solutions. This year, the series is grounded in the book How To Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi. “Our planning committee got early copies of the book. We read the book over the summer and spent a lot of time planning and thinking about it… People were really looking for action, so we felt like that book was a really important foundation for thinking about how we take action in our community. We felt like it’s important to not just focus on action because there has to be a foundational understanding of concepts around racism. We felt like that book gave us both of those things,” Next Steps co-founder Heather Sweeney said. There are two main ideas Next Steps is focusing on from How To Be an Antiracist. First, there is no such thing as “non-racist.” Everything is either racist or anti-racist; anything that is not anti-racist is racist. Second, anti-racism work is changing policy. “I’ve found a lot of the concepts in the book as validating, that it has put a lot of lived experiences and academic experiences that I’ve had into tangible and accessible language and stories, so that has been impactful. I think [with] the idea of success in anti-racist policy, I appreciate that the book has brought that to a community conversation,” Anya Tanyavutti, a member of the Next Steps planning committee and Vice President of the District 65 school board, explained. Next Steps host three different types of sessions: LEARN sessions, which brings together parents of all District 65 schools to learn and discuss; GROW sessions, regular monthly meetings to deep dive into chapters of Kendi’s book; and ACT sessions, which are specific to individual District 65 schools to create tailored policy solutions. Next Steps was established last year when Heather Sweeney and Sarah Liddell recognized there were less racially equity discussions occurring at Nichols compared to its elementary feeder schools. Last year they focused on the book Despite the Best Intentions: How Racial Inequality Thrives in Good Schools by Amanda Lewis and John Diamond. Lewis and Diamond are both based in the Chicago area, so they facilitated four out of the six sessions last year. Originally, Next Steps was intended just for Nichols and its feeder schools. However, the committee recognized a need and an interest to open up the series to parents of all District 65 schools. “When we were talking about opening up the series across the district, one of our concerns is that while there are many issues the same across the district, there’s also more unique issues in every school. In doing the ACT sessions at different schools, we thought we could tailor it more to the individual schools,” Sweeney said. For example, since Dewey recently lost two black female teachers, who were replaced by white teachers, Dewey parents are discussing how the racial makeup of the teachers does not reflect the racial makeup of the student body. Parents from Nichols and Kingsley are looking to create a permanent equity group
composed of a diverse group of parents, staff and possibly students to ensure future policies are anti-racist. For Nichols parents, this idea for a permanent equity group stemmed from the fact that all the parents attending the first Nichols ACT session were white. “We had a lot of ideas, but recognized that we were very limited in our perspective. We thought it just made sense to make this a part of the school culture, a group that was consistently going to do this work because we know there’s so many policies and practices that could be examined,” Sweeney explained. The Next Steps committee continues to expand their outreach, especially to families who are more greatly impacted by racist policies. At every session there is a spanish language translator present. “[It is] probably 60-70% white parents, so that’s always something we need to work on… There’s a lot of complicated reasons why people of color are not coming at the same rate that white people are coming. That doesn’t mean that we stop our outreach. Our planning committee is racially diverse, so that’s something that we’re always cognisant of. We run our programming with the lense that our material is meaningful and not just focused on white education,” Sweeney said. The first LEARN session on Oct. 17 was facilitated by Diamond, a Kellner Family Distinguished Chair in Urban Education and faculty affiliate at the University of Wiscon-
sin-Madison. Diamond led a presentation on the history of race in America, defining race as “a social construction that emerged to justify slavery, colonialism, settler colonialism, and genocide [which] is deeply intertwined with ideas about intelligence, moral worth, and criminality.” Next, the implications of race today were discussed. Diamond focused it more on Evanston specifically, including how redlining in Evanston impacted the schools and how suspension rates disproportionately affect students of color in Evanston schools. Attendants engaged in small and large group discussions about the concepts. Overarching observations included that even policy written in a “neutral” way can have discriminatory outcomes and removing the concept of “non-racism” removes the concept of “non-action.” The most recent LEARN session on Jan. 28 was facilitated by St. Xavier Professor of Sociology and Nichols’ parent Jacqueline Battalora. The concept of the second session was “Groundwork: Structural Racism and Intersectionality.” Battalora focused particularly on structural racism based upon how whiteness was established through the law. Parents also discussed how white expectations dictate our schools today. Time was limited, but parents were encouraged to think individually about “What if black girls were our primary concern and focus? How would this change our schools?” GROW sessions occur the first Tuesday of every month for parents to discuss specific chapters of How To Be an Antiracist. Those sessions have been facilitated by Soola Kim and Melissa Blounc who connect the concepts in the book to Evanston more directly. LEARN and GROW sessions, along with ACT sessions at Nichols are open for the community to attend. The Next Steps website has a variety of resources for people who want to learn more about racism, intersectionality and anti-racism work. “I think parent education and parent engagement is vital, so my hope is that we continue to have meaningful and transformative conversations as a community and that Next Steps is funded at a level that allows for it to continue to have an impact and be a resource to our community to not just learn, but to act and create the change that we want to be in the world,” Tanyavutti said.
2020 ETHS Career Options Night Multiple Pathways to Success
This open house is for the entire Evanston community, especially for 9th to 12th grade students and their parents/guardians. MILITARY
CAREER PATHWAY FAIR WORK
Thursday, March 19, 3pm-7pm ETHS North Cafeteria Career Pathways
Questions? Please call Michelle Vazquez at 847-424-7163 or send an email to email@example.com Please call : Tana Francellno at 847-424-7014 or send email firstname.lastname@example.org Pre-registration Recommended: https://tinyurl.com/ETHSCON
opinion - 5
Illustration by Saskia Teterycz
It’s time to end the stigma. Period.
By Gwen Tucker Staff Writer The swimming unit in P.E. class can be painful for many people: getting in the cold water in the middle of the day, walking around school with wet hair and wet clothes, and smelling like chlorine for weeks on end. But this process only gets worse when teachers start talking to girls about “taking your days” when it’s “that time of the month.” Not only is this discussion uncomfortable for everyone and excluding to transgender and non-binary individuals, the fact is that many people don’t “take their days.” I know I don’t. I desperately want to avoid the embarrassment, the feeling that everybody knows a piece of personal information about me. I want to prove that I can participate and live to the fullest extent despite the sometimes agonizing feelings in my body. Over many years, the stigma around periods has made me hide mine in a variety of ways, walking to the bathroom with a tampon hidden under my sleeve or getting in the pool when I feel painful cramps in my stomach, but there’s no reason to keep living like this. Period stigma is the idea that people feel uncomfortable talking about menstruation because they are taught to hide and be embarrassed about having their periods. Peo-
ple who have periods are often socialized to believe that something is wrong with their bodies—that there is something that needs to be hidden—when in fact it’s really just a normal process that more than half the world experiences. Implicit in the discussion of period stigma is gender inequality. Cisgender men are still the norm, and those who identify differently are taught that in order to be respected, they must hide their pain in order to appear strong. Because of this, they often pretend that periods don’t exist, even when feeling discomfort or pain. Period stigma exists here at ETHS. The feeling of sitting out of swimming in P.E. class is a perfect example. “I know students, including myself, have felt like it’s not acceptable. It feels like a punishment because I would have to work out on the side of the pool while my entire class would be able to see me... I’ve had P.E. teachers who have required a note from a parent or doctor before taking days off of swimming, making the process significantly more challenging instead of just trusting students about their own bodies,” says junior Anna Taufen. Additionally, some teachers and staff are not receptive to students’ basic needs, refusing to let students go to the bathroom during their class or go to the nurse if they are in pain. “I’ve had teachers that limit the amount of times you’re allowed to leave the class to go to the bathroom, and it is hard to approach them because of the stigma that exists in the first place… No one should have to ask for permission for a basic human need,” explains Taufen. Stigma is real and has far reaching consequences. A survey commissioned by Thinx, a maker of period proof underwear, and PERIOD, a nonprofit leading “The Menstrual
Movement,” found that 80 percent of teens surveyed feel there is a negative association with periods, that they are gross or unsanitary. 57 percent have felt personally affected by the same negative association. As stated in the survey, “negative associations with menstruation are powerful, have been found to contribute to ‘self-objectification, body shame, and lack of agency in sexual decision-making’ for young people.” Sophomore Chloe Byrne, a participant in a Civics in Action project about period stigma, says that one important thing she has learned is that “[w]e can change minds.” There are actions we can take as a community to combat stigma. We must challenge stigma through conversation in and outside of class. The more we talk about periods just as a fact of life, the more we normalize them. The more we stop using coded language like “that time of the month,” the more we recognize that we don’t need to hide these conversations behind laughable terms instead of just talking about it openly and honestly. Discussions about periods also have to extend beyond people who experience them. “I have learned just how uncomfortable some males are with the subject of menstruation. When [a student] initially gave her speech about menstrual shaming/stigma, one male student in our class was so uncomfortable that he had to leave the room,” Byrne explains. Without the engagement of people who don’t have periods, the stigma will persist, because these conversations will continue to be taboo and silenced. Teachers can also help combat stigma. The same survey from Thinx showed that 25 percent of teens have missed class due to lack of access to period products, but we can make sure that happens far less. If pos-
sible, teachers should make the effort to provide menstrual products in their classroom, and make it clear to their students that this is something they offer. History teacher Matthew Walsh, who offers menstrual products and other necessities in his classroom, emphasizes their importance. “Students who have their periods should not be shamed. Period. Making students go to the nurse or find a bathroom where there might be products available seems ridiculous... why would I want students to miss class wandering the school looking for things I can easily and cheaply provide?” Walsh says. The end of period stigma must go beyond interpersonal relationships. The ETHS administration has to make institutional changes and prove that it too is not afraid to have these conversations. It needs to consistently provide access to high-quality, usable menstrual products—not the existing products currently found in some bathrooms—with working and full machines. They should be in all bathrooms, regardless of gender, because people of different gender identities can have periods. Period stigma is deeply rooted in our society, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to change. As a community, we must take action to change the perceptions around periods. As Walsh states, it’s necessary “to discuss whose ‘stuff’ gets shamed and why our culture thinks that something so normal and natural is viewed as disgusting by many.” Dominant culture has convinced most people that periods are something to be embarrassed of. Many of us grow up believing that something so normal is so embarrassing. Period stigma is not only negative, it’s dangerous, and it’s time to end it. Period.
6 - opinion 28 days is not enough: Black history should be taught year round Illustration by Ellie Lind
By Tamara Guy Staff Writer In January of 2019, Illinois passed a law that required all public colleges, high schools and elementary schools to teach Black history. According to the Illinois House Resolutions, “...every public elementary school and high school shall include in its curriculum a unit of instruction studying the events of Black history…” The law goes into detail saying the African slave trade, slavery in America, as well as the after-effects of slavery and African-American culture are among the topics required to be taught. Carter Woodson created Black history week in 1915 to acknowledge the achievements of Black people. It was the second week of February because it was in between the birthdays
of Abraham Lincoln, who abolished slavery, and Frederick Douglass, a Black abolitionist whose slave narrative became popular and impacted the path towards the freedom of enslaved Africans. It evolved into a month-long celebration once protest began at Kent State University in the 1970s to uplift the idea of dedicating a month to Black History. Black History was used as an educational period that evolved to become a month of reflection on our history as well as a way for us to acknowledge our ancestors and our great achievements made in American history. The month’s celebrations have also provided education to the Black community and is allowing us to see these historic achievements, but why is it that our community is only celebrated throughout this month when most, if not all, of American history is built upon Black history? The economy of America was built from slave labor and the production of cotton. This landmark influence and that of Black rights and movements on American history are so important but are moments our country rarely acknowledges. Currently, Arkansas, Florida, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and
Illinois all have state mandates that require Black history to be taught in schools. This has been a step for Black culture in our state and hopefully, more states will begin to follow along. Historically, many teachers cram our history into one month, but our history needs to be incorporated during the entire year to accurately teach our history. This state requirement is a step in Black achievement and is powerful for the community. Ganae McAlpin, an African American Studies and Humanities teacher, states that Black history should not be taught during just Black History Month because it blindsides the topic of Black lives throughout history. “You do not just teach it during this month. It is horrible and trivializes the experiences, the history and everything Black people have gone through. We try to incorporate [Black history] throughout history, and so when we get to talking about Black folks, it’s not like ‘oh Black people are oppressed;’ we are talking about oppression as a whole, and Black people are not the only people who are oppressed,” McAlpin says. If we continue to talk about Black History only during Black History month, it won’t allow people, especially Black people, the op-
portunity to fully understand their history in an effective way. In ETHS’ curricula across content areas, I have experienced learning more about more Black Voices, Women’s voices, LatinX voices and LGBTQ+ voices, just to name a few. History teachers need to continue working towards including multiple oppressed voices throughout their curriculum to accurately represent the communities in American society. Students of color need to understand that their history is important, and they will be better able to do this when they see themselves more reflected in their education. Non-POC students need to reflect on the history being taught during their history courses to help them with understanding the experiences of oppressed groups throughout history and their unearned privileges. Our school needs to work towards making sure we can incorporate the stories of historically oppressed groups more into our curricula. It is important that American history is shared in an accurate way, and we acknowledge all of the discrepancies within the culture of teaching Black history as American History.
Students should be given more time for course selection
By Linnea Mayo Staff Writer Course selection. The time of the year where in a couple of months, students must choose their classes for the following school year. Every year, the main stem of stress—for myself and many of my peers—as been from course selection. We’re expected to map out our interests and future goals through our classes. “It’s really hard to weigh out all the options and see what’s best for you when considering graduation requirements and trying to take classes that align with what you might want to do after high school,” sophomore Charlotte Miller explains. With each year comes a greater choice of classes, often making these decisions more stressful for students. Whether they’ve spent weeks planning their classes or picking them on the spot, the process is sure to be difficult as they build their schedule for success. This is why time is crucial, and more of it should be provided for students. As someone who is not the best at making decisions, it’s important for me to look into all possible classes and have discussions with my counselor before jumping into any irrational decisions, which time can grant. Though students often think they must
pack their schedules with the most rigorous classes, without thorough decision making, they can find themselves over scheduled and overworked. They must recognize the difference between mastering academically challenging schedules and straining themselves. “Something I think ETHS could change is probably give a little bit more time to decide the classes because I felt like I would forget to actually choose my classes,” sophomore Isabella De la Torre suggests. These students aren’t given the time to think through their decisions and rationalize what works best for them. Especially in the 2020 school year, where the deadline was moved from April 30 in 2019 to Feb. 10 in 2020, they’ve been stripped of the chance to plan ahead because once they return from winter break, the process seems to begin almost right away. For me, time has always helped, as it’s prevented me from making last minute decisions or not getting all of the information I need to make my decision. This drop in time put a lot of stress on me. At the beginning of the year, I was focused on getting back into a routine in second semester. Course selection was always at the back of my mind as some teachers brought it up, but it was not a main thought until later into the month of January. “I do usually plan ahead because if I don’t, I feel I might make the wrong decision, so I spend a lot of time thinking about what I might want,” Miller explains. As students work through the course selection process, graduation requirements, though not being something ETHS can fix as they are a state requirement, can become one of the things students must balance when choosing their classes.
“Sometimes I feel like I have to pick certain classes and not what classes I want to because I want to complete the requirements,” De la Torre explains. This contributing factor can make creating a schedule frustrating, as students feel the need to fill their schedule with classes simply because of the requirements. Graduation requirements are also usually linked to post high school plans. High school has always been thought of as a place to plan your future, getting you ready for college or any other goals after your four years. Beginning freshman year, we’re encouraged to take classes geared to our futures, adding another layer of stress with the range of options. Students have the expectation to map out their future through classes, even if they’re unsure what these plans look like for them. “I would give a little more time because you want to make sure you actually like the classes you choose because once you start taking it, it could lead you to a career you may want to continue with,” junior Lily Hatton says. Time would allow students to weigh all their options, and though they may not have an idea of their future plans, sign up for classes they believe could be of interest. Counselors are another large factor in course selection. I have been lucky to be able to have my counselor for great support and help in the process. However, often I’ve felt this is the main person I rely on. Considering counselors have the ability to make or break a student’s feelings about a certain class through their words, finding yourself sitting in a counselor’s office with little direction can have a negative impact. Junior Josie McCartney explains her
views on counselor meetings. “I do find meeting with the counselor difficult because I always seem to change my course selection, like when I change my mind on a class, or if I hear someone who took the class before saying what they didn’t like about it, and it changes my mind.” McCartney says. Considering these counselor meetings may not be the most helpful for some, students are left to think through the decisions on their own. Lastly, some teachers provide recommendations for students for what classes they think would suit them. However, often this teacher recommendation can become confusing or unhelpful if students are asked to participate in the recommendation process. Students should be able to go to their teachers for support in the decision making process, and so the teachers’ knowledge of the students fit for a class is essential. “I was recommended for 5 AP’s, which I knew was way too many and I couldn’t decide which ones would be best to take. It was also weird when teachers would ask what we wanted to be recommended for,” Miller says. With all these factors, and a lack of time to utilize their resources, the process of course selection becomes stressful and unpleasant when it should really be a time for students to choose classes they find intriguing and get them excited for the following year. In the short amount of time they have, students must consider their workload, future plans and suitability. In order to allow students to fully consider their options, ETHS must reconsider its course selection process and timeline.
We need to combat objectification and sexualization of women in the media
By Maddie Coyle Assistant Opinion Editor “For most of history, anonymous was a woman”—this idea was illustrated in Virginia Woolf’s In Search of a Room of One’s Own and is pertinent to understand how women used to live their lives. Throughout history, women haven’t always been treated as people, but as mere objects. According to the Women’s International Center, women were thought of as lesser to men. They were given no legal existence outside a male figure, so much so men virtually owned the women and children in their lives to the same extent that they owned a house. Many believe that it has come a long way from this point in history. In some ways it has, but there is still more work that needs to be done, which can be achieved in part through the media. “I think the issue resonates deep into our societal values. From early on, the messaging our society sends is we need to be good looking, make a lot of money, have a big house and marry a prince/princess. Naturally as we grow up and become consumers, we start to align with brands that reflect who we are or we want to be. Our own vision of romance and body image is largely shaped by the Disney movies we watch as kids, and then manifests in the mass media as adults,” Marketing and Algebra in Entrepreneurship teacher Christopher Manila says. Objectification and sexualization of women have been prevalent in the media for practically as long as the modern media has existed. For example, one ‘50s ad from the coffee brand Chase and Sanborn shows a woman slumped over a man in a chair while the man is about to spank her. This atrocious example of objectification was meant to show the pressure packed power of this coffee. Even outside this notorious sexist media culture of the 1950s, those types of references are still seen in 2010s. One example was the 2016 Sprite campaign where the tagline was “she’s seen more ceilings than Michaelangelo.” “When I see sexist ads, I am filled with disgust. It makes me feel as if our society hasn’t advanced. You would think the U.S. that has many laws to give women rights, would be able to stop sexism, but it hasn’t,” sophomore Joanna Tafolla says. “I am frustrated because it makes me realize that men still see us as lesser humans just because of our gender. I hate how everything we do in our daily lives is based on our gender, making it harder for individuals to realize the extent of their sexist stereotypes.” Most recently, a KFC ad aired in Australia that showed young boys ogling at a young woman’s body. This sparked a lot of controversy and sexist claims and resulted in an apology from the big name franchise, according to The New York Times. While this apology was indeed necessary, it was interesting how many found the apology surprising. Abhik Roy, a former ad executive and professor of marketing at Quinnipiac University said in an interview with The New York Times that, “they [KFC] would have never apologized 15 or 20 years ago; it’s more because of social media pressure.” This example goes to show the progress that has made since the #MeToo movement, but there is still a long way to go. Part of the reason that these ads have decreased is because our consumer base has reached a point in which people don’t want to see women, or anyone, objectified. Despite this, there are still sexist ads that play into gender stereotypes and objectify and sexualize women. . None of these are ok.
“I think the sex-sells works similarly advertisers have jecting messages. As a society, our image of beauty is consistent with what we see in advertisements. We perpetuate this image on a
mentality to why ob-
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to The New York Times, the top executive of the parent company of Victoria’s Secret, Ed Razek, was known for inappropriate
con- duct. He tried to kiss models, would have them day sit in his lap. t o When model d a y Andi Muise reIllustration by Valerie Larsen basis on sojected Razek’s cial media- the advances, she pictures we post, the wasn’t hired filters we use, the people we follow align by the brand again. Even the chief executive with how we see beauty. I think at the end of their parent company, Leslie Wexner, was of the day, companies are selling hope. They heard demeaning women and making lewd are selling an image of beauty and romance comments about employees’ weight. There that the mass market aspires to have,” Manila was another instance similar to this in which says. models posed nude in front of a prominent It’s also important that we recognize ad- Victoria’s Secret photographer, without bevertisements are not the only form of media ing paid, and the photographer made the in which objectification and sexualization photos taken into an expensive coffee-table occurs. book. Some copies continue to be sold on More recently, social media apps also the photographer’s website for upwards of play into objectification and sexualization. $1,800 and $3,600. One example of this is on TikTok, in which “Knowing that this happened with Victhere have been young women and girls who toria’s Secret makes me regret buying their wear tighter, lower cut tops as a way to attract products. I am a huge consumer of body more followers and advertisers compared to sprays and lotion, and now that I know how young men and boys who will wear baggy women who represent this industry are being clothes when they perform the same TikToks, treated, it’s making me wish I knew before according to The New York Times. Another because it’s not right that women have to face app that plays into this idea is Instagram, in so much sexism and harassment in their day which there are many people who decide to to day lives due to a job that people keep supshow off their bodies. These apps give people port by buying from it,” Tafolla says. the idea that putting their bodies on the InThe surprising thing is that despite the ternet will get them to become more popular character of the brand’s treatment of women, and perhaps reach the point of fame because their main consumer base is women. And yet, they have seen that happen with celebrities this company still treats women as mere oband think that it could maybe happen to jects rather than as respected employees. Victhem too. Instagram models and people like toria’s Secret is one of the many companies the Kardahsians reinforce this idea. Most of that use media as a platform to connect with them are well known for their lives on social consumers, but the way they have treated media and their posts—most of which they their models and the overall message of their are showing off their bodies. Even so, it isn’t company contributes to the way companies even real because many of these celebrities and the media objectify women. will use Photoshop to alter their bodies. However, it’s important to recognize that Even without celebrities or models posting objectification isn’t only present in women, to show off their bodies, there are still other but people of all genders. It’s important that accounts that are sexist or objectify women, we all recognize that no matter what, objeceven if it isn’t their purpose on the platform. tification is not ok. Ads and social media do “Sometimes I’ll be following an account not need to a play into the marketing ploy that just posts funny memes and I’ll come that sex sells. It is more important that we across something blatantly sexist or blatantly empower rather than objectify. It’s time that objectifying, and it bothers me so much. I’m we banish these ideas and that we learn to not looking for this to be perpetuated into the create more spaces that all people feel commillions of followers this account has. All fortable in. Let us take the step and work to these people are there to see something fun- fight for spaces that are accepting and fair to ny, now, thinking that it is funny to be sexist all people because we, as consumers, have or to objectify women,” senior Dar Anderson that power. According to The New York says. Times, Britain’s advertising regulator banned Right now our society is showing that you all gender stereotypes in their ads because of have to flaunt your body in ways that may a report that stated “gender-stereotypical immake you uncomfortable to be popular. This agery and rhetoric can lead to unequal genrise of social media has contributed to people der outcomes in public and private aspects of comparing themselves to their peers or ce- people’s lives.” lebrities, according to BBC. Those compariTafolla says that “I think if the U.S. were to sons can allow for an unhealthy mindset and do something similar to this, it would reduce can contribute to unhealthy eating patterns, the amount of harassment women face and according to The National Eating Disorders it will create more equality in the workforce. Association. As teens, we can combat objectification And it’s not just social media or adver- within media by not consuming damaging tising that contribute to objectification, but media and companies because if we continit is the content that companies are giving to ue to consume it we’ll continue this cycle of consumers. One brand that has been revealed sexism making it harder for us to get people as an objectifying and misogynistic brand is to realize the damage it’s done to women’s Victoria’s Secret. Recent articles by Forbes lives.” and The New York Times have revealed the misogynistic culture of the brand. According
Estrés en los estudiantes del último año en la secundaria
Por Vanesa Funes, Alejandra Cardenas Escritores Invitados Cada día que pasa, nos acercamos más y más al gran día de graduación que hemos estado esperando con mucha ansia por tanto tiempo. Pensar que estamos a pocos meses de ese día causa muchas emociones que son difíciles de explicar. Cada persona experimenta un sentimiento diferente entre alegría y nervios. Yo (Vanesa), por ejemplo me siento estresada sabiendo que aún no sé qué quiero para mi futuro y sé que muchos estudiantes se podrán relacionar con ese sentimiento. Y yo, (Alejandra), por ejemplo estoy estresada por la cantidad de tarea que dejan los maestros. Eso me causa estrés porque dejan tarea en cada clase y toma mucho tiempo de mi tarde, luego no tenemos tiempo para hacer planes para el futuro después de graduarme e investigar lo que quiero hacer. ¿Qué pasa cuando ya la ceremonia ha acabado? Eso es lo que causa temor en muchos estudiantes pensar que el futuro nos espera y que desde ese dia en adelante tendremos que ir solos a enfrentar el mundo sin saber si estamos bien preparados o no. Después de años de trabajo, hemos completado todos los requisitos y vamos a obtenido un título. Muchos estudiantes nos estresamos porque queremos que nuestros padres estén orgullosos de nosotros, queremos enseñarles a nuestros padres todo el trabajo y esfuerzo que ellos ponen para hacerlos feliz y orgullosos. Un estudio de Nature Biotechnology dice “Nuestros resultados muestran que los estudiantes que se gradúan son más de seis veces más probable que experimenten depresión y ansiedad comparado con la población general.” Muchas veces el estrés viene hacia los graduados de la primera generación (los que por primera vez en su familia se gradúan de la high school en los EE.UU y van a ir a la universidad) y causa mucha desesperación no saber llenar todo los papeles requeridos para entrar en la universidad, lo cual es muy difícil si no se tiene ayuda de profesionales. Personalmente, conozco a muchas familias de las cuales ninguno de los miembros de la familia han entrado en la universidad por razones personales, económicas o simplemente por no saber cómo navegar el sistema de aplicar a las universidades y de ‘financial aid’. Esto causa la mayor ansiedad en estudiantes que por primera vez van a entrar en la universidad lo cual sienten la mayor presión en hacer todo bien para hacer a sus familiares orgullosos. Recomendamos a los estudiantes que disfruten día a día con sus familia todas las recompensas logradas. Con el tiempo y el esfuerzo van a estar listos para el futuro. Recomendamos sobre todo, a los estudiantes de primera generación, que pidan toda la ayuda que necesiten en ETHS para poder obtener la admisión a las universidades y obtener la ayuda financiera necesaria. Deben aprovechar de todos los recursos disponibles para ayudarles con el proceso de las aplicaciones y también con la ayuda financiera en ETHS para poder realizar los planes post secundaria. No vaciles en pedir la ayuda que necesites de los consejeros y del College Career Center. ¡Felicidades a todos los estudiantes del 2020!
8 - opinion Music streaming is making songs shorter, less enjoyable
By Christopher Vye Staff Writer From record players to radios to walkmans to mp3 players, the methods that people have used to listen to their favorite songs have always been evolving. Lately, the most common way that people have been listening to music is by purchasing subscriptions on their phones to services that give them unlimited streams of available songs. Platforms like Spotify, Apple Music and Pandora have thrived off of these business models. In fact, the popularity of apps just like the ones mentioned has grown so immensely that evidence has surfaced of artists specifically designing songs to take advantage of their algorithms; the length of the average song has decreased from what it was a couple years ago. If this trend is to continue, it will lead to a music environment that is overall, worse. According to data analysis on music streaming conducted by Quartz, the average length of each song that made an appearance on the Billboard Hot 100 fell from three minutes and 50 seconds to three minutes and 30 seconds between 2013 and 2018. Furthermore, six percent of songs to chart in 2018 were two minutes and 30 seconds or less as compared to only one percent in 2013. “Personally, I didn’t realize songs were getting shorter, but it makes a lot of sense. It helps explain why a lot of recent songs seem to sound so similar to each other; they don’t last long enough to really stand out,” says sophomore Alex Krepsik. As for 2019, numerous top ten hits from the year have fallen under the three minute mark, including Lizzo’s “Good as Hell,” and Ariana Grande’s “7 Rings.” Some 2019 songs even have run times at under two minutes. The song that will be remembered as defining the summer of 2019, breaking record after record after record, the original version of Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road,” clocked in at just one minute and 53 seconds. All of the songs just mentioned were among 2019’s shortest and most popular. Knowing this, it would be reasonable to expect the average song length to only decrease further in the coming years. While it is undeniable that this shift is occurring, how do we know that online music streaming is the reason for this change? The answer lies in the economics of stream-
ing apps. For each individual stream a song obtains, its creator is paid the same amount, no matter the duration. So in order to generate the most revenue, it does not matter how long a song is listened to, it just has to be listened to in full. This is noteworthy as in 2018, money generated from streaming services accounted for 75 percent of a song’s total revenue, according to Quartz. In order to capitalize off of this, it would be logical for artists to make shorter songs. But even if music stars’ latest tracks are a bit shorter than they were compared to their previous work, that does not mean that the content of the song is inherently worse. However, it does mean that the experience of listening to it will not last as long. Freshman Ben Levy describes this as being, “slightly irritating” because, “if you find a good song now,” there is a bigger chance that “it doesn’t last long.” He also says he would much prefer to listen to a five minute song than a two-and-a-half minute song twice. Even if artists try to argue that a song’s length and quality have no correlation, it still stands that shorter music cannot provide listeners such as myself and Levy with as much satisfaction as longer songs can. Moreover, Sophomore Raya Goulding recalls a time a few summers ago when she had a particularly memorable experience with a certain song. “I was at camp and everyone danced to the same song everyday during warmups. It was just a lot of fun,” Goulding marvelled. People who have had experiences with music like Goulding’s know just how unforgettable they can be. These moments can give people chills, or make them feel as if they are the center of the universe.Though, with shorter music becoming more common, less people will be able to have these experiences to the same degree as Goulding has had. Songs that don’t last as long just can’t provide people with the same joy. Their won’t be as significant a build up to the peak of the final chorus, or as many quotable lyrics to make these experiences something that people will remember and cherish. Though plenty of people still frequently have experiences with music similar to Goulding’s, recent songs that have attempted to try and give more people this gratification have fallen flat of fulfilling that role. Take Taylor Swift’s “Me!” for instance. The song was supposed to be a return to the more upbeat poppy sound that brought her to superstardom as opposed to the darker, more sinister side that fans saw in Reputation. However, critics thought the song fell flat of its potential. Vulture went as far as saying the song was, “not the height of her formidable
Illustration by Mimi Herrick
songwriting powers” in addition to calling the lyrics “simple.” This backlash among critics was so strong that Swift ended up removing an entire lyric from the song’s bridge when it came time to release the full album. “Me!” is, “...not nearly as detailed or complex as the typical Taylor Swift story song,” junior and Taylor Swift fan Connie Harwood said. It was not just critics who felt this way about the song, but even some of the most committed members of her fanbase. Part of why critics and fans alike felt this way about “Me!” is because of how it was meticulously crafted with maximizing revenues from streaming services as a priority. This ultimately led to its content and length being sacrificed, which was done in an effort to satisfy an audience dominated by streamers. For example, the song begins immediately with lyrics. This was a design choice well suited for listeners who are likely to skip the track if it does not get them hooked immediately. Furthermore, the song’s chorus is extremely basic and repetitive, making it easy for people to almost completely memorize it after only a few listens. Again, streamers would appreciate this choice because when they are looking for new music to listen to, the catchiness of a song plays a huge role in whether or not they are going to add it to their libraries and playlists. Although it may seem like these design choices do not adversely affect people’s experience with the song, that could not be further from the truth. Firstly, the lack of an intro leaves listeners unsure of what to expect from the piece as opposed to if it started with one. The lyrical content of the chorus also
causes problems when the fact that it was written by Taylor Swift is brought into consideration. For those unfamiliar, Swift is an artist who plays a large part in writing every single one of her songs. She has been praised in the past for telling intricate stories through her lyrics. But when comparing the chorus of “Me!” to some of her previous works, the quality of the writing is so different that it does not seem like it was written by the same person. When an artist as talented as Taylor Swift is writing such phoned-in lyrics for her latest album’s lead single, there must be a driving force behind the shift that is bigger than herself; increased rates of music streaming is the most logical reason why. “If somebody is packaging their music to fit into a runtime, they are not being a true artist. It dilutes their authenticity,” percussion teacher Dave Eisenreich says. No matter what may make music stars want to compress their songs, music will always remain better with fewer restrictions in place during its creation. When a song’s length has to be sacrificed, the quality of its content will also decrease. Artists who take advantage of the properties of streaming services today ignore the fact that music is more than just what meets the ear. It has layers of depth and color to it that should be protected and upheld because people deserve to listen to the best music. In order to preserve this, people need to start holding artists accountable for making music that is a true reflection of their potential. Whether it is writing honest reviews of popular songs or simply skipping songs that they do not like, anything that can be done to protect the integrity of this art form is something that is worthwhile.
Eva n s t o n i a n Executive Editors
Callie Grober, Sofie Kennedy, Sophia Weglarz
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Assistant Opinion Editors Maddie Coyle, Saskia Teterycz
Feature Editor Eden Drajpuch
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Assistant In-Depth Editor Lauren Dain
Arts and Entertainment Editor Nora Miller
Sports Editors Michael Barthelemy, Eli Cohen
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Hailey Fine, Sophia McCandlish
Photo and Arts & Layout Editor Grayson Charlton
Assistant Photo and Arts Editor Madison McGuire
Copy Editor Zachary Bahar
Public Relations Editors Eli Cohen, Rebecca Lustig, Caroline Jacobs
Writers, Artists, Photographers, Graphics:
Peter Barbato, Sabrina Barnes, Izzy Basso, Everneesa Beech, Kayla Black, Nakaiya Bias, Louise Bond, Evan Burns, Catie Bryant, Martha Castellini, Adrian Cyrus, Cheyenne Edwards, Benji Fervoy, William Fogue-Wambo, Angie Gomez, Sophie Gomez, Tamara Guy, Chloe Haack, Ava Hadley, Ingrid Halverson, Mathilda Hallstrom, Kaila Holland, Jude Hollenbeck, Quinn Hughes, Jake Kaufman, Noah Kayaian, Clare Kennedy, Sophie Lammers, Valerie Larsen, Sally Levine, Ellie Lind, Mira Littman, Aldric Martinez-Olson, Linnea Mayo, Madison McGuire, Zach Myers, Sari Oppenheimer, Najiah Osborne-Francellno, Sarah Parisien, Gabriel Peters, Phoebe Porter, Taryn Robinson, Maia Roothan, Sloane Rosenthal, Litzy Segura, Lia Sheahan, Jessica Sehgal, Sadie Sims, Olivia Stitely, Sydney Ter Molen, Gwen Tucker, Jared Tucker, Adam Weiss, Jojo Wertheimer, Sofia Williams, Sophie Yang
Patti Minegishi Delacruz, Ruth Tekeste
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EXPANDING OUR ROOTS
Photos by Nora Miller, Gabriel Peters, Sophia Weglarz
“To me, this year was better planned out. There were more activities this year that I enjoyed than last year. The food was also better than last year. I had a better time and I felt like it was more student led than teacher led, and I had better connections with the people around me. During the survey, we got to choose what we got to do. Last year, I think we were just put into groups. [This year] I was able to choose the groups I wanted to go to, so I was able to talk about topics I wanted. As opposed to being put into a group I didn’t know much about, I got to talk about things I wanted to talk about for my race like colorism and women. I think that’s a good idea instead of just placing kids so they will have a better time.” - Sophomore Dezanay Allen
Black Student Summit 2020 “My favorite part of the Summit is the affinity group....I feel like in a lot of my classes, the people of color, and especially the Black people, get silenced unwillingly...the white voices dominate the discussion, so I really like to hear different voices and stories that I can’t hear [in my classes].” - Senior Aldric Martinez-Olson
“This Black Summit was the best Summit we had in four years. The speaker was amazing. He empowered women and showed us why being Black is amazing.” - Senior Zeenat Njoya
“It was one of the best years that I’ve experienced. The workshops hit home for me and the speaker was everything and more.” - Senior Lauryn Gray “Today’s event was phenomenal! To see so many students and staff invested into the work of equity instead of just the word was truly an impactful experience. The fact that students were the driving force behind the planning and the participation was even more impressive. The event should certainly be done nationally in schools.” - Brandon Brown, President of School Yard Rap
“My favorite part was the women’s identity session because it was nice being around a bunch of black women who we all shared similar experiences and we were all able to be together and talk about the issues that went on. I also loved the food, because as a Nigeran, I feel that the jollof rice was Nigerian approved. The colorism section, I felt it was really good to have that, to talk about the discrimination within our community, whether that was hair or skin tone and how we perceive each other.” - Sophomore Michelle Ogungbemi
“I love how we all connected, like in the women’s affinity group. I really liked the mental health workshop the most because we were able to talk about things I’ve never talked about before. It was very inspiring and informative, and it was nice having us share our experience.” - Sophomore Camryn Cullum
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“It was enlightening—all of the cultural dances and us just learning more about our Black culture.” - Freshman Omari Waldron “The Black Summit was an experience both Black and other racial backgrounds should experience. I loved every moment of the Black Summit and would do it over again.” - Senior Luke Thorpe
10 - in-depth
n 2014, ETHS introduced its first Black Student Summit. This event marked the beginning of the Social Consciousness Series. The ETHS website states that the Social Consciousness Series “includes programs and events that invite critical reflection and examine institutional practices.” This series includes the Black Summit, Middle Eastern North Africa and Asian (MENAA) Summit, LGBTQ+ summit, Latinx Summit and Parent Summit, as well as the new Becoming Anti-racist workshop. These events aim to initiate discussions about students’ lived experiences based on race, gender and sexual identity, while also providing space for reflection, growth, understanding and unity. HISTORY According to Equity Analyst Lauren Hamilton, the idea for the first Black male summit came from discus-
sions around centering the Black experience at ETHS in a way not historically facilitated in classes. “How often are students...of color being in spaces where they feel welcome and they feel as though they belong in those spaces they’re in, they’re not just there, they’re not an intrusion upon those spaces?” Hamilton asks. “When we talk about disciplinary actions and how Black male students are disproportionately represented in suspension rates and referrals that are written up, it was important for the district...to make sure that they were combatting those biases and the reality of what it means to be a Black male student in the building sometimes.” In 2017, the
Summit coordinating committee agreed to combine the Black male and female Summit into one Summit for greater inclusion as assigning genders to different Summits excluded non-binary attendees. For the first time this year, the Black Summit was divided into two days with freshmen and sophomores attending one day and juniors and seniors attending the second day. This contrasts from the previous model, which had attendance divided up alphabetically. “You have someone who is 17, 18, about to leave high school and go out into the real world. Their mindset is a little different as opposed to a 14 or 15 year old just
Illustrations by Sophia Weglarz
coming into high school trying to navigate,” College and Career Support Specialist Llyoandra Cooper says. ETHS officially hosted its first Latinx Summit on April 22, 2016. The Summit has utilized resources from both ETHS and Northwestern with former ETHS staff member Margarita Vascara and Northwestern Latinx Studies professor Alejandro Cardiome leading the planning for the first Summit. Since then, the Summit planning has incorporated more student involvement, which is now a requirement for all of the Summit planning committees. The Latinx Summit aims to highlight historical Latinx adversity and recognize the intersections of race, gender, sexuality and class within students’ identities. Intersectionality is also central to the LGBTQ+ summit. In 2017, ETHS hosted its first LGBTQ+ summit to institute discussions regarding the “intersection of queerness in relation to race, gender identity and religion,” says senior and member of the LGBTQ+ planning committee Samantha Severin. The Summit focuses on maintaining visibility on binary and non-binary isssues, outreach, media representation of the community and overall inclusivity while also providing a safe space for the attendees. “It’s a learning experience as well as a fun thing, and it also is providing education and it is providing the resources for certain things. And so I think it’s more so catering to people who tend to not be catered to,” junior Summit attendee Rael Tiemann says. Since its beginning, the LGBTQ+ summit has been coordinated by a student planning committee and in collaboration with the Gender & Sexuality Alliance. The MENAA summit began in 2016 in response to “a few students who identified as South Asian and Middle Eastern [who] were in a club where the students started talking about the need for a Summit,” Director of Communications and MENAA planning committee member Takumi Iseda says. As the Summit has progressed
over the years, student and staff coordinators have adapted the name so the Summit is more inclusive of different identities. This is the first year the Summit has been labeled the MENAA summit, as it was previously called SAME. “It’s Middle Eastern, North African and Asian” says Iseda. “So, it’s essentially making sure that in the power of naming, we continue to look at how we’re constructing the space and making sure that we’re being as inclusive as we can.” In 2018, ETHS hosted its first Parent Summit to bring together parents and guardians in the district to have conversations about race and equity. Unlike the other Summits, this event brings together community members of all different identities and backgrounds to discuss many similar ideas as those mentioned at the Summits. The Summit will take place again this May and is currently being coordinated by Boosters, staff and community members. One recent development in the Social Consciousness series is the addition of a workshop called “Becoming Antiracist: Interrogating and Decentering Whiteness.” These events, which are not labeled Summits as they do not affirm whiteness, aim to provide a space for students, particularly white students, to better understand their white identities, the construction of whiteness, privilege, and antiracism. “I believe we need to engage all students in eliminating the racial predictability and disproportionality of which student groups occupy the highest- and lowest-achievement categories,” New Student Transition Coordinator Alicia Hart says, speaking to why ETHS needs an antiracism workshop. Other events under the Social Consciousness Series include Beyond Diversity professional development training for new staff and an upcoming community exhibit presented by Calvin Terrell. In respect to all of the Summits throughout the past six years, one goal has rung true across the board: the strive to implement identity-focused conversation, provide students with resources and leave a lasting impression of empowerment. STUDENT IMPACT The Summits provide students resources for navigating their own identities and agencies in the school community. “I really enjoy spending time with people who identify with me, and who can relate to me,” Severin says. “I found it to be contemplative but joyful.” Black Student Summit coordinator Maya Acacia attended the Black Student Summit last year and joined the committee to make
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SCIOUSNESS changes she wanted to see. “[The Summits are] supposed to educate [students about] navigating through spaces,” she says. “It’s supposed to teach students how to be themselves and know how to take up space in a respectful way.” Acacia notes that this year’s Black Student Summit offered a focus on mental health. “There’s a big stigma in the African American community about mental health and how depression, it’s bad, and it’s all in your head and it’s weak,” Acacia says. “[The Summit gives the students] different ideas to show them that it’s okay, and you’re not always gonna be happy.” These additions to the Summits are due to students’ contribution to Summit planning. As the Social Consciousness Series has evolved over the years, staff coordinators have attempted to center student voice and insight in the planning and the day of the event. “One thing that has changed is that it’s required that all of the Summit planners who are a part of those affinity spaces must include students, so the students and staff plan the Summits together,” Campbell says. “Now we have a much more robust student participation in the planning and the execution of the Summits.” Severin is a testament to the power of student voice in Summit planning. “The staff helped work with the students, so I felt really involved, making decisions [planning for] food, who’s leading the workshops, reaching out to the keynote speakers that we always have,” Severin says. “It’s been a very similar experience both years. It’s just really nice to be involved and help plan something I love instead of just like showing up.” By creating a strong partnership between students and staff in the planning process, both groups have created a mutually shared Summit experience. “I just remember the first time that I participated and the number of staff just saying how incredibly powerful it was for them and how
they wished they had that when they were in high school,” says Iseda. “I certainly didn’t have that experience when I was in high school, so I really appreciated that I could be part of something that, you know, obviously, benefited our students because they had a space where their identities could be seen and affirmed. But also for me personally, it did the same thing.” While the Summits are inarguably geared towards students who identify with the specific affinity group, students who identify as allies, still attend. Allies are people who don’t directly identify with the affinity group, but are supporters of these communities. All ETHS students are allowed to attend any of the Social Consciousness Series events; however, there are students like Rael Tiemann who believe the communities the Sum-
For students like Tabet who have chosen to pursue a four-year college education, the Summits have inspired them to take a greater interest in their identity, particularly as it pertains to academic spaces. “I have continued to be proud of the person I am and the identities I hold, and I have decided to take a class that deals directly with immigration and the Latinx community, where we will actually be able to visit detention centers and help many Latinx families,” says Tabet. “Additionally, I have been volunteering in an elementary school in one of the ESL classes, so I can improve my Spanish and help those students be proud of their heritage and cultures.” The workshops and conversations at the Social Consciousness Series often impact how students approach new learning environments or professional spaces in the future. Jamaal Perrin, who graduated from ETHS in 2019, attended the Black Student Summit and the Latinx Student Summit in his four years at ETHS. He cited
phrase. But now, I think that they have actually evolved as well and are valuable educational experiences for students,” Perrin says. As many staff members continue to envision what the future of the Summits will look like, it is important that student voice remains at the
forefront. “I think that as long as we continue to listen to students and what they really want out of their high school experience, and also what traditionally has been missing, we can help to fill some of those gaps,” Iseda says. WHAT’S NEXT While the conversations that take place at the Summits and workshops within the Social Consciousness Series play a significant role in fostering a sense of belonging for students and promoting critical reflection, there is more work to be done. “We don’t come to the summits with the intention of solving
“[The Summits are] supposed to educate [students about] navigating through spaces. It’s supposed to teach students how to be themselves and know how to take up space in a respectful way.” - senior LGBTQ+ Summit Coordinator Samantha Severin mits are directed toward should have priority attendance. “I believe that first and foremost, it is for the community, Then, if someone chooses to support and there are enough spaces available, they can go, but the resources are not there for people not a part of the community,” says Tiemann. While some current ETHS students recognize the importance of the Summits in the ETHS environment, many recent ETHS graduates reflect on their Summit experiences and note the impact those experiences has had on their lives beyond ETHS. “It’s good to allow yourself to think critically about the different ways that being a Latinx student at ETHS impacts you,” says ETHS graduate Grace Tabet. “I learned a lot through conversations with my Latinx peers, and I just came closer with the community.”
the Summits’ basis of empowerment as one of the most powerful aspects. “I feel like the greatest thing I took from that was motivation. Like, ‘hey, just ‘cause you’re Black, or any race really, you still can do anything that anyone else can do,” says Perrin. “Your skin color doesn’t define you.’ It’s like, we’re all people, we’re all humans, so we all have the mental capacity and the capability to just do anything we really believe we can do.” The Social Consciousness series has continued to expand, with the “Becoming Antiracist” workshop being added to the series, furthering the mission to incorporate learning and empowerment into one unique experience. “I think at first I didn’t necessarily think of Summits as being, you know, a learning experience in the traditional sense of the word or the
everything in two days. We definitely take bits and pieces and try to chisel away at the big picture everytime and just give us a starting point so we can do more work,” Cooper says. The hope is that students are taking what they have learned at the Summits into the rest of their lives both at ETHS and outside of the school. Some teachers are working to incorporate topics around identity that connect to themes and ideas brought up in the summits. “What does it look like for classroom teachers to be talking about why we have these events in the first place? Can they connect with students who maybe have gone or haven’t gone but still could learn a lot from the work that is being done?” Hamilton says. English teacher and one of the first MENAA Summit coordinators, Anita Bucio, has worked to
implement uity ideas
into her classroom curriculum. “I think it’s really important that we e x t e n d beyond white narratives and I tried to push my teaching to figure out how to do that,” says Bucio. “What I realize more and more each year is that I, outside of the Asian and Middle Eastern [cultures] haven’t been taught what that looks like. As a teacher each year, me and my partner do a lot of work to figure out how to bring in voices of joy and excellence, history and story that have been silent from our educational system.” While some teachers, like Bucio, are aligning their curricular focus to the goals of the Social Consciousness series, some staff have not fully gotten on board with this initiative. Moving forward, Campbell hopes to continue to garner more support for the Summits and the Social Consciousness series. “Whenever I hear a Summit naysayer or someone who doesn’t understand, it’s always a person that I perceive is white and cisgender. Even if kids are missing a day or two of class, this is about the whole child and their entire experience at ETHS, and as a part of their entire experience at ETHS, I would want us to continue to support those efforts,” Campbell says. Hamilton and other administrators are working to provide that support for students in the building. “I think folks feel very special and seen on these days [Summits] but I think that we have a lot more to do as a district to really have spaces of inclusion and belonging and equity here. This is just one small part of that work” [Full story online at evanstonian.net]
By Sophia Weglarz, Caroline Jacobs, Lauren Dain, Meg Houseworth, Jessica Seghal, Sydney TerMolen Executive Editor, In-Depth Editor, Assistant In-Depth Editor, Staff Writers
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Exploring the complexities of friend groups at ETHS
By Mimi Herrick, Maia Roothaan Feature Facilitator, Staff Writer
Walking through the halls, you see many different groups of friends, some speaking another language and others talking about practice or upcoming club meetings. The social culture of ETHS is nuanced, and ultimately affects our high school experiences. A clique is defined as a narrow, exclusive group of people, according to the Merriam Webster Dictionary. Although cliques may not exist in their most stereotypical form at ETHS, friend groups do exist. More specifically, some students feel as though they don’t exactly fit into one group of people all the time, creating fluidity in their social circles. “I am in the band program, but I also do baseball, [and] I swim. There are many different groups I’m in like the academic community, the athletic community [and] the arts community. I feel like I meet a lot of people, but I can’t specialize in one group,” junior Andrew Vye says. Although this may be true for some, there are also other students who feel like they have a consistent friend group that they hang out with exclusively. “I would say I have a more solid friend group because I hang out with the same people whenever I get the chance to. Really, it doesn’t switch up that often,” sophomore Teague Sieja says. Additionally, many people have a social fabric that’s centered around their clubs. For many, clubs and extracurriculars are a place to spend time with friends with similar interests. About 57 percent of children ages six to 17 participate in at least one club or sport, according to a 2014 US Census report. “Last year, I joined the tennis team and I made a bunch of good friends doing that, and then lacrosse, so that definitely has something to do with the people I hang out with,” Sieja says. However, there is more nuance to friend groups and social circles than just clubs and sports, as some spaces within ETHS can feel exclusive.
“When I was a freshman, I found it weird that there wasn’t a Black Student Union even though we are the second largest population at ETHS. It was hard for me to balance being with my black friends during the day and then going to a group like Emerge where nobody who looked [like me] was around. I was still forced to speak up and interact with people who didn’t look like me,” senior Mauranne
Director of Activities and Student Success Center Nichole Boyd says. Students often find themselves forming friendships through affinity groups, groups based on a common identifier or interest like race, gender or class. Affinity groups at ETHS can meet in spaces like the classrooms, clubs and summits, which can foster an environment where students can relate to
Illustration by Kaila Holland
Vernier says. In an interview with Stanford News, Daniel McFarland, a researcher from the Stanford Graduate School of Education, says, “schools are indirectly shaping [social] conditions.” ETHS is influencing the social culture because of the wide variety of options for extracurriculars and classes, providing students with the opportunity to find spaces where they feel like they belong. “My experience in observation is that people gravitate to people who look like them and spaces where they feel comfortable. There has to be some common thing that brings them together. I say our diversity is a blessing, but it can also be a challenge... Students really need to extend themselves,”
potentially similar lived experiences. According to an interview on WTTW with UIC sociology professor Rachel Gordon, it is common for adolescents to form solid social groups and cliques so that they have a safe space to discover their identities. “My friends I’ve made at the [Middle Eastern, North African, and Asian] summit relate more deeply to my experiences,” senior Anika Kaushikkar says. “Many of them are first or second generation immigrants and they relate intimately to my experiences as a brown person.” At ETHS, the Summits provide a space where students of different identities can reflect on their lived experiences through a series of workshops and guest speakers. The
summits are a part of ETHS’ Social Consciousness Series, which aims to create a sense of belonging for all ETHS students. “Right now, I’m on the leadership board for the Black Student Summit. I was drawn to this because of my desire to form a black student union, and having participated in the summit for years, I wanted to help improve it. As I said before, most of the clubs I am in are very white spaces, and it is nice to have that space and to reconnect to black culture at ETHS, ” Vernier says. Language also contributes to how students make friends. In 2018, the Center for Immigration Studies found that around 63.7 million U.S. residents spoke another language at home, making language a prominent way that people connect. “It’s just nice knowing that you and this other person can speak a language and have that in common,” sophomore Hilda Arellano, who speaks Spanish in addition to English, says. Arellano and sophomore Daniella Escobar recognize their languages as a way to connect with people because there’s more to language than just words. It’s a way to intimately communicate with people; every language has its own intricate histories of how the language is spoken. “When I found people who spoke the same language as me, we were very similar, and I think that definitely helped me,” Escobar, who also speaks Spanish in addition to English, says. In addition to language, recognizing the diversity of identities at ETHS is something Boyd thinks the school does a good job of catering to. “One of our biggest things is that we’re culturally, racially, and economically diverse. That’s one thing that sets us apart from other schools,” Boyd says, “We do have a lot of clubs that celebrate different identities...We have so many different things that support all the different ways students show up.” Contributor: Sarah Parisien, Staff Writer
Rocking the red carpet: celebrities make political statements with their platform By Ingrid Halverson Staff Writer In the past decade, red carpet movements have served as a way for celebrities to elevate their voices and represent those who lack the ability to speak out against sexual harassment. Arguably the most influential movement in that past few years has been the #MeToo movement, which Tarana Burke started in 2006 to empower sexual assault victims, particulary women of color in low income communities, according to the #MeToo mission statement. After about six months of the hashtag going viral, the conversation around sexual violence spread to reach a global audience of survivors willing to speak about their experiences and their allies. The movement’s organizers work with survivors in community events to establish empowerment. Following the same outlines as #MeToo, #TimesUp is another organization that is focusing on empowering women who have survived sexual assault. Starting at the 2018 Oscars, many celebrities began wearing black on the red carpet in support of the the #TimesUp movement which sparked a conversation surrounding sexual assault in celebrity culture. In recent years, not only has the public eye caught on to sexism on the red carpet, but many celebrities have spoken out about how sexism affects them too. At the 2015 Grammys, Reese Witherspoon created the #AskHerMore movement, which demanded media question women with as much thought and intents as men. The movement has taken
off with many iconic figures behind the idea. With women like Reese Witherspoon, Shonda Rhimes, Gloria Steinem, Maria Shriver, Lisa Ling and Sandra Fluke, many people believe that the image of the red carpet is changing for the better. “I think as a society we have shifted from a place where women are asked about fashion first to where women are asked about their lives and the things that they are doing or working with in the same way that men are, which I think is good,” says sophomore Ella Greenberg Winnick. “I think that that is a change we needed to see, and it’s still definitely one that we are waiting for completely, but it is moving in the right direction.” The mission of the #TimesUp movement, similarly to the #MeToo movement, is to include all races, genders and ethnicities, which is something that has set #TimesUp apart from other red carpet movements that historically focused less on celebrity voice. “We want every person — across race, ethnicity, religion, sexuality, gender identity and income level—to be safe on the job and have equal opportunity for economic success and security,” the TimesUp mission statement says. With its three goals of safety, equity and power, TimesUp is expanding its platform beyond the red carpet and to a world of people who are often silenced. The red carpet is continuing to shift into a place that includes all races and genders to support all voices. “I definitely think that sharing that platform with black women and women of color is more important because you aren’t getting a one sided view, and I think race plays into it
as well,” says junior Naiyah Bryant. “I think it’s important that [Times Up] continues to allow women of color to speak and include themselves in that conversation.” In today’s world, celebrities are dominant figures in the media. Celebrities are using their platforms to promote products, stand for political beliefs and talk about their experiences. Movements including #MeToo have started on the red carpet because of celebrities’ recognition of their powerful platform. However, even with the support of fans from around the world, speaking out about traumatic events can be a daunting task. “The majority of women – if they came forward – were stigmatised for reporting it, and in some cases lost their jobs,” says Reese Witherspoon in an interview w i t h Anne Fulenwider.
“There was no reason to share your story if the results would be so punitive.” Celebrities are helping survivors empower themselves by showing how strong any type of person can be, no matter what level of society they are in or what the “price” will be. With any survivors speaking out about their experiences, viewers often feel inspired to speak out about their own story and feel that they are not alone. “Celebrities have a lot more attention on them,” sophomore Ash Nelson says. “When they use their voices to talk about something important, there are millions of people following their decisions that can benefit from them addressing a larger issue.”
Illustration by Sabrina Barnes
The end justifies the memes:
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Photos courtesy of Wikipedia, Imgur, Pocket-lint.com, ImgFlip, Newfa
analysis of memes and contemporary society By Eli Marshall Feature Facilitator It’s a familiar sight for many of us. You’re mindlessly scrolling through your phone, sifting through the endless content stream of your social media platform of choice. You see something that catches your eye: a quick video, a captioned image, something short and snappy you can understand the context of, and you acknowledge that it’s funny, or supposed to be funny at least. You probably just keep scrolling after seeing it, but you might chuckle, and perhaps it’s even good enough to show to a friend. Whether you’re aware of it or not, you’ve just been the recipient of the transfer of a cultural micro artifact from one individual to another. These days, that cultural micro artifact is often labeled as a meme. The term “meme” was initially coined by evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins in his 1976 book The Selfish Gene, defining a meme as an “idea, behavior, or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.” Dawkins was the first to bring the idea of memes into academia, essentially proposing that memes are to culture what genes are to biology in the sense that both are a means of spreading from one individual to another via replication—memes are elements of human culture that get reproduced upon people sharing them. In the age of the internet, we often think of memes as a concept native to the digital world and our 21st century mass communication tools, like computers and smartphones. But by Dawkins’ definition, memes are not exclusive to the internet, and they are a form of communication that has existed for as long as civilization has. At their root, memes can be anything from an image to a phrase to an event so long as the context of what they represent can be understood by their target audience. When a person sees a meme for the first time, it doesn’t mean anything to them unless they can make a connection to something they already know. One prominent pre-internet example of a phenomenon that spread similar to how a meme might today was a symbol known as “Kilroy was here.” As described by James Hodge, an associate professor of English at Northwestern University, “It’s a little cartoon guy with his nose sticking over the edge of a table or something like that and it just says ‘Kilroy Was Here’. World War II planes have this, it’s more like graffiti. He just pops up everywhere in streets, painted on trash cans, bookstore windows, and it’s sort of like, ‘where does this come from?’” As people saw “Kilroy was here” in various places, it allowed the joke to become widely recognized, making it increasingly relevant. This is exactly how memes capture our attention. Memes particularly play into the psychological phenomenon of the mere exposure effect, according to a 2018 paper from Front Psychology; that is, people develop preference for some things over others simply out of having more familiarity with one thing over another. Repetition allows for
memes to catch on—someone might see a meme for the first time and dismiss it, but if they see something similar again, they’ll be more familiar and more likely to understand its context. In the same sense that repetition and being able to make a connection allows us to appreciate humor, we enjoy memes on a psychological level. Memes are also efficient methods of storage of certain concepts—they allow us to pack complex ideas into a single image or phrase. However, it took a fundamental shift in communication and culture for the term “meme” to become what it is today. The internet marked a huge change in the definition of the word “meme,” so much so that it’s important to distinguish between memes that are products of the internet and memes that aren’t. At the surface, the only difference between an internet meme and a meme in Dawkins’ sense of the term is that the former spreads over the internet, often through social media platforms in particular. The often perceived definition of a meme is an image with bold, white text at its top and bottom, but as the internet grew to be more widely used, its culture changed, and the definition of an internet meme expanded to include anything from images to videos and GIFs to simple phrases. Sophomore Albert Portnoy describes an internet meme as “some content, whether it be an image, video, GIF, text, any of that, that has some inner meaning or different meaning,” and that “most times, they’ve got some comedy aspect to them.” The key to an internet meme solidifying itself in the internet’s collective consciousness was less about the form it could take and more about how much it could be passed along. “Memes are really defined by their circulation and their replicability. They can be easily tweaked and changed, and you can see lots of variations on one kind of meme,” Hodge adds. When I first became active on the internet and began to understand its culture, I didn’t think much of memes. I first started to become familiar with them during my middle school years, and I saw them mostly as just forms of entertainment and can recall spending a lot of time watching compilations of memes in video form, particularly on platforms like Vine. Portnoy describes a similar first experience with memes. “I remember, I think it was around 7th grade, there was a meme day for spirit week at middle school, and I made a little ‘costume’ that was basically just a picture with a bunch of memes on it that I wore around my neck. Those were all kind of older memes at the time. Since then memes have been a pretty big part of my life. Part of this year I ran an ETHS meme account [on Instagram] that I’m no longer active on,” he explains. The idea of memes devoted exclusively to ETHS touches on another key aspect of internet memes. They serve a unique purpose among a smaller group of people, falling closer to the definition of an inside joke.
“Internet memes didn’t exist when I was in high school, but I had in-jokes with my best friends, and those in-jokes were often quotations from movies or TV shows, or something somebody said, and we would use them in a lot of the ways memes are often used right now,” Hodge says. The nature of the way internet memes can be spread allows them to be a way for members of specific communities to communicate and identify with one another. As Portnoy adds, “If you were to show [an ETHS meme Instagram account] to someone from a different high school, they wouldn’t get it. That brings the school together.” For my own experience, it wasn’t until I actively participated in specific online communities that I began to see firsthand the value memes have in bringing people together. For example, in a community centered around a college football simulation game that I administer, which I went into more detail about in an article in The Evanstonian last year, it took a long time for the space to develop a sense of community.
This type of online community brings random people that could be from all around the world together, people that know nothing about each other, aside from the fact that they all have a certain common interest. For an online space to truly be a community, something needs to bring the diverse range of participants together, and in my experience with this specific community, it was memes. We quoted memorable moments and broadcasts from real college football, something understood by enough of the community to effectively be our own memes. Eventually, there were enough experiences exclusive to the community that we had memes that acted more as inside jokes. My experience here is only a microscopic example of the impact of memes, but a similar effect can be seen for memes meant to be understood by a more mainstream public consciousness—a sense of cultural understanding and belonging. [Continued on Evanstonian.net]
14 - A&E
By Kelsey Blickenstaff, Sophie Yang Staff Writers
The ETHS Dance Company (EDC) showcases Illuminate, a performance featuring a range of choreographed dances by students and guest artists. Since beginning rehearsals in October, dancers are looking forward to showing their range of dance genres, such as tap, jazz, contemporary and ballet in their thoughtful performance. “I’m so excited for the show, because it’s so fun to perform with the company as we have such a good bond and are so close to each other,” sophomore Ferran Amaral says. Every year, guest choreographers feature pieces within the show. Guest artists work with students and choreograph dances to be performed by the EDC. All guest artists are based in the Chicago area. This year, they include Laura Gates teaching ballet, Julie Nichols specializing in musical theatre, Wes Owens in hip hop, Erin Bates in contemporary, Ronaldo Monge with flamenco, a style EDC has never covered before. By including these professionals, students are provided with an opportunity to learn a variety of styles. Junior and EDC Outreach Co-Chair Maya Moskal talks about the value guest choreographers have. “They bring different styles to the company, and it’s a really good way for dancers and choreographers to learn other styles and ways to teach dance,” Moskal explains. Along with guest artists, this year’s EDC show features a few special performances with guest dancers. Seniors Megan Bezaitis and Stephanie Black choreographed a teacher dance, which participating staff will perform exclusively Saturday, Feb. 29. Another featured performance is a partner dance with EDC dancers and 11 members of the ETHS varsity boys baseball team. EDC Assistant Director Anastassia Williams talks about the
decision to include dances with the teachers and baseball team. “We wanted to create a show that lots of people would want to see, and by including the special dances it adds a really fun element,” Williams says. Juggling homework and weekly rehearsals is a part of the three week preparation that goes into tech week. In the final week before the premiere of the show, rehearsals took place everyday from 4-8 p.m. Illuminate is the highlight of the year for the dancers,
so they want to make sure everything runs smoothly. “I definitely have to plan ahead,” freshman Sloane Rosenthal says. “But it’s just like any other sport; I know how to schedule it.” The EDC team consists of 31 dancers, including 16 seniors. Many of these seniors have danced at ETHS since freshman year, and Illuminate will be their last big performance with EDC. “It’s been really exciting to see [the seniors] grow from where they started freshman year
to now, and they’re coming up with dances that have deep themes,” Williams says. Months of hard work have been put into the show by dancers, choreographers, guests and staff. Premiering tonight, Illuminate will be performed in the auditorium at at 7 p.m. Additional performances will take place tomorrow at 7 p.m. and March 1 at 2 p.m.
Dancers rehearse before opening night.
Photos by Zachary Bahar
arts & entertainment Artists compete in IHSAE By Madison McGuire Staff Writer Annually, the Illinois High School Arts Exhibition (IHSAE) gives young artists in Illinois a chance to be recognized for their outstanding accomplishments in art and design. ETHS students are encouraged to apply and participate in the exhibition every year. The IHSAE is a non-for-profit organization whose mission is “the growth and advancement of visual arts education for all people.” They promote their mission through their exposure and endorsement of young artists. The IHSAE gives artists a platform to build their creative capital and share their work with people outside of their schools. They do this through exhibitions where students can submit pieces of artwork. ETHS is among those participating Chicagoland highschools in the IHSAE competitions. Submitted pieces can pertain to any of eight categories: drawing, painting, mixed media, design, photography, pottery, sculpture and time arts. “As a faculty, we decide what actually gets submitted. The general exhibition is pretty elite,” art teacher and IHSAE head coordinator at ETHS Marla Seibold says. Students may submit as many pieces as they wish to be reviewed by a department head from their respective school and submitted to the IHSAE. Upon submission, their work is reviewed along with hundreds of other students from nearly 150 participating high schools along with ETHS, according to IHSAE. Out of these applicants, a select few are chosen to be featured in an art show,
displaying their creations to others in the art community and professionals in the field. There is a general exhibition and a senior showcase. “When [the judges] are judging the work in the general and senior exhibitions for additional awards and recognition, they are looking for technical proficiency, artistic vision, experimentation and risk, as well as both growth and process,” IHSAE representative Johnathan Reiman says. Along with promoting connections to the professional world, they also offer students connections to scholarships and prestigious summer art programs and universities. In 2018, partnered universities and programs awarded 43 million dollars in tuition scholarships to 312 seniors from all over Illinois according to IHSAE. Among these students included many individuals that previously did not think of college as an option are now able to attend. They produced nearly 124 million dollars in scholarship offers for tuition and early enrollment programs for students across Illinois. From ETHS, previous winners include Asher White, Jessica Cardinas, Joe Liebforth and Cecilia Goodman. “Even before the show colleges can see your submissions, there are hundreds of thousands of dollars in it. I think of it as making it to state in sports but for artists,” notes William Simos, assistant IHSAE coordinator. and art teacher.
E-Town’s Secret Grandpa By Tate Lucas Staff Writer Improvisation is one of the hardest types of acting; actors must spontaneously make scenes up on the spot and figure out how to continue the scene as they go. The performer must possess creativity and courage to get through a scene while developing a group dynamic that can adapt to the spontaneity that is essential to improv. The cast of Secret Grandpa, Evanston’s youth improv troupe, is willing to take on the challenge. At first, Secret Grandpa was made from a children’s theatre group and over time turned into an improv group for older students in Evanston. This group has worked on bonding together during their weekly practices to enhance their creativity on stage and ultimately make their shows entertaining. “One of the most challenging parts of improv is being brave enough to take risks and trust your partner to support you. After doing improv for seven years, the most challenging part for me is trying to be different,” senior Eli Civetta explains. During their shows, actors transform ideas suggested by audience members into scenes. Making these shows entertaining requires team effort and hours of practice. If the group has any sketches or operas, they rehearse those as well, according to junior and performer Josie Hansen. “Rehearsal is always really fun and very refreshing,” Hansen says. “Most people in the group are very different from one another,
but I think that makes our bond even stronger and our shows even better. I was the new person this year and even though not many people knew me, everyone was so welcoming, It’s such a fun and weird group of people, but you find things in common with everyone.” The Secret Grandpa group performs shows about once a month. These shows include a mix of fun games and operas. An opera usually occurs at the end of a show, and it typically has a theme. An opera can be performed in different ways such as a popular song parody the cast has created or a comedy skit that follows the theme. “For the upcoming show, the theme is the election, so there could be a song parody about the election or a game we will perform in front of the audience,” Civetta says. Secret Grandpa performs about once a month; there is a show tonight and tomorrow at 7 p.m. at the Gibbs Morrison Center.
By Michael Barthelemy Sports Editor
My favorite dessert: donuts. They’re a classic American treat. While the donut can first be dated as far back as prehistoric civilizations, it was far from what we see today. A sweet donut featuring a hole in the middle didn’t come into fruition until closer to the 20th century. And thank goodness it did. It’s difficult to cite the reason behind why the simple concept of fried dough has become such a delicacy in today’s culture, but who’s complaining? In my quest to find the best, I found three Evanston establishments that fit the bill: Bennison’s, DB3 and Sweet Temptations. I tried a chocolate donut as well as a glazed alternative. I feel like I can’t start this review before I address the inconsistency that lies within the glazed donuts. Each spot had a different version. I tried to sample chocolate glazed to stay with the theme of chocolate. However, Sweet Temptations did not offer this option, so I chose to try the classic glaze. Alright enough talk, let’s get to munchin’.
DB3 In the few years since DB3 has opened as an extension of the restaurant Ten Mile House, DB3 has thrived. Despite operating only three days a week and closing by 2 p.m., DB3 has become one of the hottest spots in North Evanston. Coming in with such high expectations, it was difficult to know if DB3 could live up to the hype Starting with the classic chocolate “raised”
donut, I found myself disappointed. While the dough itself was of high quality and clearly fresh, it couldn’t make up for the frosting, which I found subpar. The frosting was more of a ganache which, for those who don’t know, is a version of frosting that often has a more liquid texture; it does not harden after sitting out. DB3 seemed to be using more of a dark chocolate in the frosting rather than a more traditional semi-sweet. I was not a fan of this bitter taste, and it took away from the idea of a traditional donut. I understand this place is trying to be different and put a spin on a classic, but it simply didn’t work here for me. The chocolate glazed donut, on the other hand, was fantastic. The chocolate cake base was much like Ron Swanson from Parks and Recreation: crisp and hard on the outside, but soft on the inside. This dynamic works perfectly. The chocolate taste was fantastic, and it showed me why DB3 has become so beloved. For the glaze, there is not a ton to say. It wasn’t too melty and was frosted over the top—a great partner to the cake. Scores: 3.1/5, 4.4/5
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Typically in Munchin’ with Michael, I try to avoid repeat reviews; if I have already reviewed a spot, I’ll try not to go again. But in the case of Bennison’s donuts, how could I resist? If I decided to skip it, there would be a mob of pitchforks and torches lined up outside of my house. Starting with the chocolate donut, it’s the base for what a donut should aim to become. The cake base was much like DB3 in the way that the outside was a bit crisp, yet it maintained a fluffy inside. What made this donut stand out though was the slight lemon zest in the cake. While it threw me off a bit at first, it ended up being a nice surprise and worked well with the chocolate frosting. As for that frosting, it was superb. The chocolate was thicker and felt fudgier than the others, and it gave a rich, classic chocolate flavor. The glazed was more of the same, only the dough was not a cake batter. The dough was made to be light and act as a compliment to the glaze and chocolate frosting. The glaze was a nice running partner with the chocolate. My only wish was that it had a bit of a stronger presence. Yes, it was there and yes, I could taste the glaze, but it seemed to be hiding in the shadows, afraid to take center stage.
I had never heard of this place before this review. Looking for a spot in South Evanston, I happened to stumble upon Sweet Temptations, but it was nothing to brag about. For starters, the dough was the densest I’ve ever had. The lack of air in the dough made the chew less appealing. Especially when eating dessert, it’s important that there is a light feeling so that you don’t feel too guilty about eating it. Looking past the density, the flavor… well there really wasn’t much of it. Now dough is not supposed to be some ultra-flavorful base but what separates the good from the great is the use of ingredients within the dough. Sweet Temptations’ dough was simply bland; it possessed little flavor and practically no sweetness. The chocolate frosting was quite solid. Nothing special, but it was the brightest spot of the donut. The issue that arose was in the frosting-dough ratio. There was pretty much no frosting in comparison to the brick that was the dough. So even though the frosting was good, it was greatly overshadowed. Not much was different in the glazed donut. It was a classic glazed donut coating surrounding the dough, but once again, it was tough to taste the glaze over all of the dough. Maybe donuts simply aren’t what Sweet Temptations specializes in, but for being a bakery offering donuts, they need to step up their game. Scores: 2.2/5, 2.6/5
Scores: 4.1/5, 3.9/5
Mad Style: the evolution of sneakers Photo courtesy of farfetch.com and kickstw.com
By Madison McGuire Staff Writer No matter what your style is from chic to rock to casual, there’s one thing they all have in common— shoes. Shoes have evolved into a means of personal expression, originality and status. They are no longer purely practical, they are expressive and expensive. It’s hard to imagine what life was like before shoes. For centuries what seemed like a simple human need has evolved into an influential industry powered by consumers and high-end design. Throughout history, different patterns of economics, politics, art and culture all played roles in changes of shoe design. Sneakers, one of the most prominent styles of shoes, have had an immense and profound impact on shoe culture. The invention of sneakers came long before any of the shoe brands that are known today. Initially, the first rubber soled shoes were made for tennis in the early 19th century. Though they were made for athletic use, they were named “sneakers” for the quiet steps that one could take in them. Industrialization in the 1920s made sneakers more accessible to the public and affordable to produce. Converse created the first ever basketball shoe in 1917, sparking their popularity in the world of athletics along with athleisure, or athletic leisurewear. Converse was one of the first companies to utilize brand ambassadors such as Chuck Taylor to endorse their products, according to
CNN. Eventually the classic thin rubber sole evolved with more high-tech soles and statement colors and patterns. For the first time around in 1970, sneakers were not just athletic shoes but fashion statements. In 1977, Vogue declared that “real runner’s sneakers” had become status symbols worn by famous non-athletes like Farrah Fawcett and Mick Jagger. “[Before 1970], sneakers were unacceptable on adults except for special occasions, like picnics. The only grownups granted reprieves were gym teachers and country cousins,” wrote Greg Donaldson with The New York Times. As sneakers became more and more common, skaters, basketball players and musicians alike began to wear Vans, Converse and Keds for comfort and practicality. Over time, shoe design became more than purely practical. Designers started to strive to make their shoes unique and interesting. Bold colors and patterns were seen on shoes for the first time around 1985 with Air Jordans and Nike’s distinct shoe design style. Nike Cortezs were seen as one of the first shoes to bring sneakers into the world of fashion. Air Jordan 1s in 1985 were thought to be the beginning of sneaker lover culture. Today, it is seen as “a community of sneaker collectors and admirers who follow new releases with dedication,” according to Allyssia Alleyne, CNN. Many shoe designers also began to implement political statements
into their sneaker designs, such as pictures of Obama or Black Lives Matter slogans embedded into shoe designs. This drew attention to the sneaker industry more than ever before. Along with their newfound political influence, high end designers and runway brands started to pair with athletic brands to design their own statement sneakers. The first to do so was Gucci, with a tennis shoe including “Gucci” printed on the tongue in 1984. They capitalized on the growing sneaker industry and jumped on the new sneaker trend. Other brands soon followed, with Prada designing runway-ready kicks and Adidas teaming up with Jeremy Scott to create designer sneakers in 2002. Followed by Louis Vuitton collaborating with Kanye West, the sneaker industry was now something that the world looked to as a prominent industry and staple in fashion. Today, the sneaker industry is bigger and bolder than ever before. Sneakerhead culture, catalyzed by Nike in the 1980s, is a widespread phenomenon. As high-end shoes are now expensive and limited, “sneaker heads” are known for collecting and maintaining dozens of unique shoes. Not only are they collectors items, but many people use reselling shoes as a source of income. Rare shoes that are difficult to find can be resold for much more than their initial value, along with artists refurbishing and designing new shoes to sell to others. “In these days, sneakers have gotten so big
that they are now a means of income. In my opinion, to be a sneakerhead is to buy shoes for more than what they are used for, but rather for a means of income or collection as a hobby,” P.E. teacher and sneaker enthusiast Sunsahrae Brewer says. As the prices of sneakers have only risen, it is a commodity to be able to continue purchasing new shoes. Shoes with an especially unique design or brand name can even go for hundreds of dollars. Customized sneakers or endorsed brands sweep the shoe market and only continue to increase in popularity as people strive to have the newest and boldest shoes. “People always buy shoes to go with the next outfit. They base the outfit on that kind of shoe. They definitely have a big influence [on fashion]” junior and sneaker enthusiast Isaiah Holden. Sneakers and their uniqueness not only provide a costly hobby, but also a special one. Shoes have become a way to express personal and unique style, and having shoes that no one else has is something to strive for. Sneakers evolved from the way that they were first viewed by the public and are now worn by professionals and children alike. Their political and social influence has had a profound impact on not only the fashion industry but social climate as well. From the runway to the street, shoes are everywhere-and their unique designs have no limit in the world of expression and style.
16 - A&E A&E News Briefs By Rebecca Lustig Staff Writer
ETHS Choir perform Black History Month Musical Last Tuesday, the ETHS Advanced Vocal Ensemble, Chorale and Choir performed a Gospel Music Presentation as part of the “We are One” week events aligned with ETHS’ celebration of Black History Month. The performance took place in the Auditorium during periods 3 and 7. “The choir concert is about celebrating Black history and also our ancestors,” senior Zeenat Njoya says. “It is important that we celebrate this concert in order to not lose who we are and to know that even though we suffered, we created Black gospel music as a sense of therapy to praise God in a powerful way.”
to dive deeper into the background of certain pieces. In general, I hope that we’re going to connect more with our music and recognize that concert band is a space for everyone to identify with music,” junior Avery Davis, one of the leaders of the Band equity group explains. Wind Symphony is performing “Of Our New Day Begun,” written to honor those who lost their lives at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church shooting, and “Mother of a Revolution,” which celebrates black trans activist Marsha P. Johnson. Symphonic Band and Freshman Concert Band combined is performing “Shenandoah,” Thomas’ arrangement of an Americana folk song. Abigail Persell and Katherine Koeppen are also performing a piano-vocal duet for the first movement of “We Will Know: An LGBT Civil Rights Piece in Four Movements.” [Full-length stories on evanstonian.net]
Band features guest composer On the March 10 concert, the ETHS band program is featuring music by guest composer Omar Thomas. Originally a jazz composer, Thomas has recently turned his focus towards concert band where his pieces primarily tell the stories of Black and queer people in the United States. Last year, Thomas won the National Band Association Revelli Composition Contest, the first Black composer to do so. “I just hope the band gets out of its recognition that there are composers of color who make excellent music… I hope we start
Photo courtesy of Omar Thomas Music
Student Spotlight: Ion Hooks
By Adrian Cyrus Staff Writer
Photo by Sofie Kennedy
Walking around the halls at ETHS, there is a high chance of there being earbuds and sound traveling through the outer ear, striking the ear drum causing it to vibrate. Music and sound can play vital moments to a lot of our lives. We all have the soundtrack to our seasons, the soundtrack when working out, the soundtrack when doing homework. A variety of genres and music always seem to transform and combine because one genre can’t always provide what we need to hear. One person attempting to provide music for all people and all genres is fellow ETHS senior Ion Hooks who goes by the artist name Father Iconic. Hooks, who has been around music and experimenting with it ever since he was ten years old, began to get serious about his craft when he was a sophomore in high school after he recorded his first song titled “Far Away” on Soundcloud in early 2018 . “After I made my first real song, I wasn’t even paying attention to what other people
thought about it, but I was instead intrigued by how much I loved it and how much I enjoyed listening to it,” Hooks says. Hooks’s passion has led him to continue refining his craft. “Every day I would do something to contribute to a song. Whether it’s finding a beat, writing lyrics or discovering a melody, I would continuously do it,” Hooks says. In 2019, Hooks released his first official project titled “Folding Blossom,” which he put together after a time of heartbreak; he used it as a way to get his emotions out. “Folding Blossom was something I needed to release for myself, and was something I had to get out,” Hooks says. After “Folding Blossom,” Hooks has continued experimenting with different sounds, and in a six-month period since about the beginning of school, has finished 50 different songs and carefully selected 14 to be in his upcoming debut album titled Ascension, which will be released in full on Soundcloud today under the account FatherIconic. “I’ve spent a lot of time on this and am releasing songs for everybody. No matter what you listen to in the hallways, at home or in your bedroom, this album is for you, and there will be songs you enjoy on it,” Hooks says. Through two years of making music, and for the most part averaging really low listening numbers for his music, Hooks hopes to make the next stride and to reach larger audiences with the release of Ascension. “Just give my music a chance and let me know what you think...At the end of the day I make it for y’all,” Hooks says.
You can stream Hook’s new album Ascension today on Soundcloud at the account FatherIconic.
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Streaming services limit outreach By Lauren Grill Staff Writer
Mac Miller’s Circles reveals
difficulties with posthumous albums By Jojo Wertheimer
Staff Writer A month after releasing his new album Swimming in September 2018, rapper and producer Mac Miller died of a drug overdose at the age of 26, leaving his fans and the music industry reeling. Before his death, Malcolm McCormick, known as Mac Miller, had been working on a companion album to Swimming, called Circles. His family was left with an extremely difficult decision— what to do with Miller’s unfinished music. At the beginning of January, Miller’s family posted a note on his Instagram account introducing the album. “This is a complicated process that has no right answer. We simply know that it was important to Malcolm for the world to hear it,” his family writes. Posthumous albums are extremely complicated, as the artist can no longer make the decisions about their own work. If the album of work is unfinished, the family or producer of the artist has to make decisions regarding the music that the artist themselves may not have made. “[I think] there’s not really one way to handle it. You gotta kind of know what the artist would have wanted with their music and I think when it comes to Mac, it’s exactly what he would have wanted, the way that they did it,” senior Henry Garfin says. “But his death was so sudden and unexpected, so you don’t want to prepare for like ‘oh what do you want to do with all your music when you die?’” In Miller’s case, his family left the unfinished work in the hands of Jon Brion who had co-produced Swimming and started working on Circles with Miller. When finishing a posthumous album, producers have to figure out a balance between keeping what has already been done intact while still finishing
the album themselves. “I was trying to figure out the way to change it as little as possible,” Brion told a reporter in an interview with Vulture. Before Miller’s death, both Swimming and Circles were meant to be a part of a three album cycle, produced with the help of Brion. The first two albums were meant to complement and complete each other. “Swimming in Circles was the concept,” Miller’s family wrote on Instagram. “It’s a vibe, it’s different, but I mean it’s definitely one of the better post death albums because I feel like he already had it pretty finished,” sophomore Harrison Alexander says. “When X made us his album, it was ‘finished,’ but it was bits and pieces. This is an actual work of art.” In the past few years, the music industry has suffered the loss of multiple influential artists, especially rappers. In June of 2018, rapper XXXTentacion passed away, followed by Miller in September and most recently, JuiceWrld in December of 2019. “X hit me the hardest just because he was the first one to go,” Alexander says. “There’s really no way to put it into words; it’s just like empty because you’re never going to hear that person’s [new] music again.” Although the artist themself cannot release any new music, their death does not mean the end of their presence as a musician. In some cases, the popularity of an artist skyrockets after they pass away. Only a day after his death, XXXTentacion’s song “Sad!” broke the record for any song played the most in one day, with 10.4 million streams on Spotify alone. The streaming of Mac Miller’s music increased by 970% after his death, according to Billboard. “A lot of people didn’t know who Mac Miller was, and a lot of people didn’t listen to
his music, but it’s only until after he passed away that people are starting to listen,” says Alexander. “I know every time that a rapper dies, for instance Juice Wrld, Mac Miller or XXX Tentacion, their songs chart, but why were they not getting that recognition when they were alive? They’re the same artist, they have the same mentality, but now that they’re gone, you’re gonna [listen?] Personally it doesn’t make any sense to me.” Garfin shared Alexander’s ideas around the phenomenon of popularity growth after an artist’s death, but changed his mind on the frustration it caused. “When I thought about it more, if they’re listening to him because they’re enjoying his music, and if they’re enjoying his music, that’s all that you really want,” says Garfin. At the beginning of his career, Miller’s music was more rap focused. As his career progressed, he became more technically accomplished in producing his own music. In 2013, Miller released Watching Movies With The Sound Off, and his music began to evolve. Throughout his most recent albums, he rapped about his substance abuse issues and struggle with depression. “He changed a lot. His earlier music was much more hip-hop based; he didn’t rap that much in this album, it was more singing. It was like that in his album before that one, Swimming,” says Garfin. “[Circles] talks a lot about drugs and death which was clearly on his mind at the end of his life. It was very genuine.” The authenticity of Miller’s music is something that sets him apart from other artists, and allows those who listen to his music to connect with him as a musician.
Bruno Mars & Adam Melchor March 19 Galantis & Dillion Francis Rich The Kid Concord Music SG Lewis Tomorrow Billie Eilish Hall March 12 March 6 & 7 Radius March 24 6 p.m. House of Vans 10 p.m. Aargon Ballroom United Center 7 p.m. 9 p.m. 7 p.m. Famous Dex Leslie Odom Jr. Olivia O’Brien Chelsea Cutler Tomorrow March 18 & Hey Violet March 10 The Forge House of Blues March 19 7 p.m. Riviera Theatre 5 p.m. House of Blues 7 p.m. 6 p.m.
Awards season has left audiences with watch lists of critically acclaimed TV shows and movies that have taken home Emmys, Oscars and any gold statuette that represents greatness in Hollywood. There’s only one issue—one would need at least eight streaming services to watch all the hits from this awards season. While trying to make media more accessible for audiences, streaming services have done the exact opposite, ending up gatekeeping original content. Ever since services such as Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video started making original content, almost every streaming corporation has followed suit. At the 2019 Emmy Awards, the services HBO, Netflix and Amazon Prime walked away with the most wins, (37, 27 and 15, respectively) as Deadline reports, far ahead of anything on network television. The reason so much online content is out there is simple: audiences consume it at insane rates. When shows realized that original content was going to bring in money, they increased licensing prices so it would be harder for Netflix to buy them out. But the company was smarter than that. Enter: the original series. Off the bat, original content on streaming services comes across as a cash grab. Netflix plans to spend $13 billion on original content this year because they knew their series would bring in money. Plus, last year the company released 371 original movies and TV shows, according to Variety. Even if original content is just a ploy for revenue, these shows and movies can mean things to people and create favorites to stay in the audience’s heads long after the credits roll. We wouldn’t have Stranger Things or Fleabag and other critically acclaimed shows if it weren’t for Netflix and Amazon. Even more so, streaming services can find new homes for shows that network TV and even other streaming services will not air that mean something to audiences. Take One Day At A Time,--the show focused on the day-today lives of a Latinx family, and also shone a light on LGBTQ+, immigrant and veteran’s issues. The show ran for three seasons on Netflix but was cancelled and picked up by another streaming service, Pop Now, for a fourth. Representation matters. When people see themselves on screen, self confidence rises, connections are created and people find something they love. Streaming can help this become a reality. So what’s the catch? As it would seem, the best shows on TV are the ones you have to pay for. To watch everything nominated for prestigious awards just on mainstream services Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime, it would cost nearly $300 ($107.99 per year for Netflix and Amazon each, and $71.88 per year for Hulu). Media should not be gatekept like this, especially when it houses wonderful programs from voices that are usually not heard in the visual arts. Luckily, streaming services Hulu and Showtime have teamed up with Spotify to offer a student discount for anyone enrolled in school. Now students can get all three services for only $4.99 a month. Streaming services are far from perfect, but I can only hope that there will be more initiatives like this that make media more accessible for audiences to enjoy TV.
18 - sports
By Hailey Fine Assistant Sports Editor
By Gordon Redfield-Gale Staff Writer
The ETHS boys basketball team is back and ready to make another deep postseason run under a tried-and-tested recipe for success and the leadership of their tremendous group of juniors. The squad graduated three of their top players last season. Although it seemed like the team would struggle to reach the level of play from past two winters, they are once again one of the top teams in the state heading into March. The success thus far is a testament to the talent of the players. They have executed Coach Mike Ellis’ blueprint with superb discipline. That blueprint? Run the floor and play as a team. “We might not have much height, but if we are aggressive in setting the tempo of the game, the taller teams won’t be able to compete with us,” junior Blake Peters explained. This game plan has worked to perfection for the Kits in prior seasons. Combine that with this year’s ability to rely on a multitude of capable scorers, and the state championship potential is there. “Each starter had their runs during the season, and they’ve all shown that they can contribute,” senior DeVaughn Bell said. “I think that everybody will step up now.” With a starting lineup composed entirely of juniors that have been a part of runs downstate before, the team knows what it takes to succeed even with the elevated intensity of the postseason.Combine this with an impressive resume that includes victories against Niles North, Niles Notre Dame, Bloom and Hamilton and this team has more than enough experience to make another trip down to Peoria. “We’re hungry for that state championship, but we’ll take it one game at a time,” Peters said. “We’ve gone third, second and now we want [to be number] one.” The Kits will kick off their postseason at Maine East, Tuesday at 7 p.m. in the Regional Semifinals.
As the Sectional Finals come up, girls basketball strives to keep up the high motivation and stay focused by establishing goals and working hard in practice. “In practice we’ve been pushing each other really hard, and the effort we’re giving now in practice is totally different from what we’ve given in the beginning of the season; it’s like a switch changed,” senior Tyler Mayne said. The Kits have started to make a comeback after a few tough losses earlier in the season. That change in mindset is starting to show on the court, as the girls start to work more cohesively together. Along with working hard on the court, the girls have been preparing for the mental aspect of the game. “We’ve had meetings with each other because we all have the same goal and are on the same page,” Mayne said. “We’ve established roles on the team that everyone has and how their role will affect us as a unit and how that will help us win.” Learning from past games, the Kits are focused on maintaining the team dynamic on the court in order to keep possession for as long as possible. This means being there for the rebounds and constantly moving the ball. Seniors Kayla Henning and Ambrea Gentle play key roles in keeping ball possession with Gentle fighting for rebounds and Henning keeping the game at a fast pace. Super-Sectionals will take place on March 2 at 7 p.m. at Conant High School.
By Chloe Haack Staff Writer
Senior Zev Grodzin put on quite a show at the IHSA State Finals in O’Fallon, IL with a 59th place finish. Being the only Evanston bowler ever to advance to the final day in the tournament, Grodzin knows the work he has put in for the past four years will truly give the bowling program an advantage for years to come. “The legacy I want to leave is that I was one of the best bowlers to ever be on the team, and that I inspired the younger guys on the team to get better and keep on bowling,” Grodzin explained Grodzin was not the only bowler to advance further into the postseason. Junior Aidan Cella reached the Sectional tourna-
ment, but unfortunately was unable to continue on after scoring 200, 228, 205, 191 and 184. Grodzin has honest confidence in the bowling team for next year, passing his star status on the team down to Cella. “[Cella] made it to Sectionals with me,” Grodzin explained. “But next year, I think he can make it to state and do well there.” While Grodzin’s bowling career may be over, it’s evident that the mark he has left won’t be left unnoticed. Grodzin was the second bowler in ETHS history to advance to the State Finals, and he did so despite the fact that he only started bowling his freshman year. This feat is one that most won’t ever achieve, but Grodzin did it with hardly any prior experience. “If you put your mind to something, you can achieve it,” Grodzin said.
By Zach Myers Staff Writer
Girls bowling finished the best season in its program history, winning both the CSL and the Regional Championships for the first time. The Kits’ season included a signature win over New Trier who they beat 2973 to 2836 to recapture ‘The Pin,’ en route to winning the 5th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Invitational. “This year, we didn’t have a so-called super star, we had a team of stars,” head coach Ray Austin said. “Our seniors, captains Asya Wright and Anne Porter along with Genevieve Christon and Riley Hays teamed with underclassmen Raivyn Summers and Dahna Duffy to form one of the most potent lineups we have had in years.” Prior to their successes, the Kits’ season got off to a rocky start losing their first match to Resurrection College Prep. “We lost some important matches early on, which arguably lost us winning conference outright,” Porter explained. “But every week we would strive to do better than the last, which made us a competitive team.” The team’s accomplishments are even more impressive once you realize that most of the girls didn’t start bowling until somewhat recently. “I came to ETHS never having bowled before.” Porter explained. “As was the case with many of our seniors this year. Through the four years and lots of hard work, I was able to be part of some really amazing teams which was really fun to experience.” Although almost half the team graduates this year, the future looks bright for the Kits as they will return all conference bowlers Raivyn Summers and Dahna Duffy next season.
By Lena Papa Staff Writer
With the cheer season wrapping up, the squads improvement is evident. The team is composed of mostly seniors, and their level of experience shows on the score sheet as they have consistently gotten better. “Our skill-set has improved significantly. The team has increased the difficulty of their routines and have graduated to higher rubric categories in stunts and tumbling,” coach Crystal Malone said. The increase in difficulty can be attributed to the team’s trust and love for each other. The team’s connection is obvious in practices and competitions. “We have had a lot of hard, long practices this season, and we’ve all been struggling together. Sometimes it’s hard to focus, because we’re all so close and don’t stop laughing,” senior Mia Testa said. The close friendships within the team have helped the squad act as one during competitions. By developing trust in various activities, they look more in sync throughout their routines. “I constantly drill home that cheerleading is a team sport, so we have to work together. We are scored on individual skill, so everyone has to look the same. We also do team bonding activities like sleepovers, team dinners, etc.,” coach Malone said. This kind of mindset is what has made it possible for the squad to work together in order to increase the difficulty level in their routines. While most of the team is graduating, the girls have high hopes for the improvement that will be made in upcoming seasons.
By Nora Miller Arts & Entertainment Editor
With two competition wins under their belt, the Evanston figure skating’s A-Team allows Evanston skaters to push their skills to the limit. The team only competes in four Illinois competitions during their four-month season, so they must aim for exceptional performance in all 12 skills at each contest. Long breaks in between competitions, which run from January until April, allow for teams to alter mechanics and craft out skill other teams further. Practicing and improving difficult maneuvers in skating, they must perform skills such as a double axel and a spin with a minimum
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the best in the league, so it’s important to set goals and constantly improve. I think at the end of the day, our main goal is to just have fun,” junior Margot Durston said. No team is perfect and can always improve with practice, which is why the Kits value dedication and a positive attitude. “I believe the team this year can work on their mental game. We need to focus on what is right in front of us and not worry about the goal that the other team just scored. I feel as though the team gets too into their own heads, myself included, when one little thing goes wrong; it shifts the tone quite a bit. But we have managed to contain that as the season went on,” senior Olivia Dipadova said. varsity star, there’s love and appreciation for the program and the team that will last a longtime. “I really like the sport, competing, the practices and the team bonding activities that we do,” Otwell said. “Overall it was everything that I had hoped for.”
of eight revolutions. During practices, the team must pay tedious attention to changing landing feet after jumps. Although the Evanston team is determined to perform well in competitions, junior Catie Glascott, who has been on the ice for thirteen years, illustrates how the team allows her to take a well-deserved break from individual competitions. “For high school competitions, we’re all out there at the same time and we’re able to talk to each other and have fun while we’re competing,” Glascott explained, “That’s the only reason why I’m skating; I’m not trying to make it to the Olympics, I just do it for fun. I think the high school team helps me realize that this is supposed to be fun.” In comparison to regional competitions, Glascott has competed in, team competitions are more casual and allow for skaters to personally connect. Most recently, the A -team placed first in their President’s Day competition at Park Ridge, and is looking for their final two competitions on March 15 in Oak Lawn, and on April 25 at Robert Crown.
By Sophia McCandlish Assistant Sports Editor
As the girls gymnastics season ends, two notable stars end on a positive note. Sophomore Ava Axelrood and senior Jamie Otwell both advanced to sectionals this season. Although they didn’t qualify for the state meet, they are both happy with what they have accomplished. “This year I qualified for sectionals in every event, which I don’t think I’ve ever done in the past. It was definitely a step forward for me,” Otwell said. “I was really excited and it always feels good to see how all the work throughout the season has paid off in the end.” Unfortunately, sectionals was where Otwell felt she performed her worst beam and bar routine of the season. On the other hand, she believes that her vault and floor routine were the strongest they’ve been this season. With failure, comes growth. As a freshman, Axelrood also finished her season at sectionals. This year, competing in this meet with a cold, she was able to feel proud of her accomplishments. With the increased level of difficulty, Axelrood’s scores were immensely higher than freshman year. “I was able to know what I’m doing coming in as a sophomore, and I think that I exceeded my expectations for sectionals,” Axelrood explained. “I just went out there and gave it my all, and I think it rewarded me a lot in the end.” As a sophomore, she has two more seasons to continue to compete. But for Otwell, a four year
By Peter Barbato Staff Writer
After a season filled with ups and downs, boy’s hockey left it all on the ice in their final game as the seniors showed out for their curtain call. “We came into Lake Forest laid back and looking to have some fun, but at the same time we wanted to secure one last win,” senior captain Charlie Rodriguez explained. The Kits knew heading into Feb. 15 that they would be playing their final game of the season that night against Lake Forest. With a 16-16-4 record, Evamston did not make the league playoffs and was eliminated from state playoffs at the hands of OPRF. “This year we weren’t depending on just one player. We didn’t have one superstar, which is why the effort is so important as we have to work together 100% of the time to be successful,” junior assistant-captain Campbell Wagener explained. “While it may not have been there through for some parts of the season, it was definitely there Saturday.” Rodriguez praised this idea of togetherness, and how it impacted his experience throughout his four years in the program. “One thing Evanston hockey has taught me is how to build connections with teammates. During the eight month seasons, I’ve never felt more a part of a family than being part of the hockey team,” Rodriguez said.
By Kevin Thomas Staff Writer
Although ETHS’ girls hockey team ended with a 6-16-1 record, there is still much to celebrate, as junior Jenny Maguire earned a spot on the All-State team. With the teams season reaching an end, they were able to accomplish some of the goals they set for themselves. “Some goals for our team were to improve our skills, and get up to some of the other teams levels. At the old Robert Crown we were put on the small ice rink, and we did not have as much strength. Now, we plan on getting better. For me, I recently have switched to being a defender and plan on getting better at this position. I have realized that I enjoy defense more, so I want to get more skilled in this Area,”sophomore Ali Wolf said. With the new, larger facility, they hope to be able to practice better, which will lead to better performance. “This team is obviously not
By Hailey Fine Assistant Sports Editor
The Pomkits’ season came to an end this past Friday by honoring the seniors and their final performance of high school. “This has been the best four years and eight seasons of my life,” senior Maggie Job said. Pomkits is not only a dance team but a family, and it has made a positive impact on most of the girls who have been a part of it. “The main thing Pomkits has done for me, is built up my confidence. I came into high school a little shy and extremely insecure about literally everything,” Job said. Being on a team has helped the girls to stay motivated not only in dance but in school and on the futures as well. “I’ve learned how to be on a team and work well with others,” senior Trinity Jenkins said. “I will most likely use this when I start my career and have to work with others.” Although the seniors will be leaving, the juniors still have a year ahead of them to make their mark on the court. “I want [juniors] to all continue Pomkits. We have a great set of juniors this year, some great leaders,” Job said. “If they chose to continue the sport, I know they will do amazing things, and I can’t wait to come back and see.”
By Jared Tucker Staff Writer
The Evanston boys swim team closed out a rollercoaster season, but they are hoping to send some swimmers to state. “It’s been up and down,” coach Kevin Auger said “We’ve had a lot of promising swims and some great victories.” One of the high points of the season was winning the Bronco Relays, where Evanston faced off against five teams in their division in an early season showdown. It was the first time in four years that Evanston had won the event. “[The win] was a huge moral booster,” senior captain John Martin said Unfortunately, the whole season was not as bright as the Bronco Relays. Evanston suffered a two point loss to Maine South. If the Kits placed
just one spot higher in any event, they would have won the meet. “That was kind of a setback for us,” Auger said. “But then we came back the next day against the number 16 team in the state and beat them.” After the rocky middle of the season, Evanston went into the conference meet with their heads high, and they left with a strong third place finish.
By Eli Cohen, Will Wambo Sports Editor, Staff Writer The wrestling season is over, and despite the loss of Ramin Abraham, Dylan Kull and Rafael Salinas, it was a good season for the Kits. Evanston had seven sectional qualifiers in Charlie Fox, Valery Jean-Jacques, AJ Joyner, Nathan Mann, Max Morton, Ricardo Salinas and Nathan Straus. Juniors Ricardo Salinas (170 lbs.) and Valery Jean-Jacques (285 lbs.) both won their respective weight brackets. Ricardo made it down state, finishing 4th place in the Class 3A 170 lbs bracket, capping off his junior season with a staggering 50-5 record. “The season went well. We have a lot to work on as a team, but there’s a bright future for the team,” Ricardo Salinas said. “We have pretty much everyone coming back, and if everyone commits to putting in the work in the off-season, we can be a very good team next year.” While Salinas is excited for the future, the team will lose some key pieces. Four seniors finished their last season with the team. Senior Max Morton, who’s wrestled all four years of high school, has many fond memories from his experience as a Wildkit wrestler. “Wrestling is my best memory of high school. I’ve worked so hard and put so much into it, and I have really learned a lot from it over these four years,” Morton said. Coach Rodolfo Salinas was a continuous support to Morton throughout his wrestling career, especially in regards to his injuries. “Coach Salinas has been everything for me these past four years. He’s helped me get through all of the frustration of the injuries,” Morton explained. “I wouldn’t have been able to wrestle and finish the season without his guidance,” The Kits are already looking forward to next season, as thier juniors, Fox, JeanJacques, Mann, Ricardo Salinas and Nathan Straus will all be returning to the mat next season.
Hockey and boys swimming photos by Madison McGuire. Wrestling photos by Sofie Kennedy. Pomkit and girls basketball photos by Hailey Fine. Boys basketball photos by Benji Fervoy.
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Senior Asia Eddy runs to the finish Photo by Nora Miller
Junior Gaby Calixte runs to the finish
Junior George Hannah turns the corner
Photo by Nora Miller
Photo by Litzy Segura
A spotlight on ETHS’ track dynasty By Michael Barthelemy Sports Editor
Consistent greatness. For the boys and girls track teams, that’s the name of the game. Year in and year out, both sides send multiple runners to state no matter the event, and this year will be no different. “We’re a running community and have a strong tradition in track and field as boys and girls,” boys coach Don Michelin Sr. said. “I’ve been in this community since 1964, and it’s always been a running community.” Seven events qualified for the boys state championship and 10, including all four relay teams, for the girls state championship last season. With a historic streak of success, it all comes back to coaching. With nearly 40 years of experience, Michelin Sr. has identified the best way to train his team: base races around the 400 meter. “The 400 meter is our median. All of our runners either train 400 and up or 400 and down, so we’ve divided the team up in that way,” Michelin Sr. explained. For sprinters, training at a longer distance usual helps build up endurance so that once they run their shorter events, they have the required stamina. For the distance team, the 400 improves speed at the final sprint of a race. The girls team, despite success last season, views this season as a blank slate. The beginning of the year is the time for girls to establish their place on their team. “Just because you did well last year doesn’t mean you’ll do well this season,” girls coach Fenton Gunter said. “Every year is a new season, and that’s how we look at it.” Everyone proving themselves daily extends into the structure of the team. With no distinguished captains, every runner has an equal opportunity to be a leader. “You don’t make leaders; leaders make themselves,” Gunter said. No matter one’s position on the team, they’ll be fighting to keep a historic streak alive. “We’re the only program in the school’s history to be in every single state final, so that’s a very big thing for us to ensure we score some points,” Gunter said. Boys Hurdlers Garnering national attention, junior Kalil Johnson leads a strong group of hurdlers. In the indoor season, Johnson swept the Dan Phillips Relays, gaining first in both the low and high 55 meter hurdle events as well as in the 4x200 meter relay. Winning the conference in those same three events, he continued into the outdoor season. After a win in the 110 and 300 meter hurdles at the Red Grange Invitational, Johnson went on to win the Sectional championship in these two events. After racing at state, Johnson continued to the USATF National Junior Olympic Championships. There, he ranked fourth in the nation within his age group.
Skyler Lee leaps over the hurdles Photo by Litzy Segura
With a new season and high expectations, Johnson knows what he must do to reach his aspirations. “I think running at state is the reason why I perform differently. I know what it takes in a big meet with a lot of competition and a lot of people watching so it definitely helps,” Johnson explained. Aside from Johnson, junior Aaron Hutchins and sophomore Sebastian Cheeks are primed for success. Hutchins proved himself in his sophomore season, pulling out first place finishes in the Red Grange Invitational and coming in fourth in the Sectional for the 300 meter. Cheeks, who is recovering from a torn labrum suffered in the fall, is questionable to return. Last year, Cheeks won the freshman conference title in the 55, 110 and 300 meter event while securing a fifth place finish in the Sectional of the 110. “[Cheeks] just missed going down state last year as a freshman, so if he can recover from his shoulder surgeries and get into shape, he can play a large role,” Michelin Sr. said. Boys Distance A strong senior distance class comes out of the cross country season ready to finish their high school track careers with a bang. The distance squad has already found success this year, with many runners being a part of the cross country team that qualified for Sectionals. Now with a few winter meets under their belts, results look to be more of the same. “These first preseason meets showed me that we can easily be conference champions, compete in the Sectional and send a lot of guys down state,” senior Jack Rutstein said. Rustein along with fellow senior Max Peterson have shown to be leaders within the team. Last season, Peterson won the Indoor Conference Championship in the 1600 meter and finished second in both the 800 and 1600 during the outdoor season, while competing in the 4x800 relay at state. Rutstein, while not having quite the same resume as Peterson, has shown increased improvement and commitment over the offseason. After a Sectionals appearance last season in the 800 meter, Rutstein made appearances in two outside meets: the Foot Locker Regional Championships and the Proviso West Milesplit IL Showcase. The fruits of his labor have already appeared in the cross country season, as he finished with the best time on the team during the race. Boys Sprinters The legacy of the Michelin family has existed in the Evanston community for three generations, and has continued through senior Sacrad Michelin. Being coached by both his father and grandfather, there is no shortage of pressure
Juniors Mollie Davis and Gabi Froum run to the finish Photo by Nora Miller
for S. Michelin, but he has lived up to the expectations time and time again. Last winter, he won the Indoor Conference Championship for the 200 meter dash and 4x200 relay. During the outdoor season he one-upped that, winning the conference title in both the 100 meter and 4x200. After competing in four events at Sectionals and winning in the 100 meter, he advanced to state in both the 100 meter and 4x200. Now coming off of a 4th place finish in the USATF Illinois Association Junior Olympic Championships over the summer, S. Michelin knows how to better settle his nerves and handle an important race. “I learned a lot in the offseason about technique so hopefully that will help give me a leg up,” S. Michelin explained. “Having experienced being down state and being in big meets has just given me experience I can use for this year.” Girls Distance A small but determined group of distance runners will look to increase the streak of distance runners sent down state. Headed by seniors Gabby Horton, Hannah Lipman and Eavan Norman, the desire for success in their final season has fueled them as well as the rest of the team. “All of us, especially the seniors, are so motivated, because we want to get a trophy this year,” Horton said. The issue that lies in this pursuit is the lack of numbers. The distance team is the smallest it has been in recent memory and as a result, the idea of relay teams as successful as last season 4x800 is in question. Last season, the 4x800 relay was able to snatch a second place finish in Sectionals on their way to an appearance at state. Now with a loss of depth in the team, the trio is not able to focus as heavily on this race, knowing they may have to cover other events. Though with such a small bunch, the chemistry of the team has reached a new level. The team has created a special bond. “I feel that the team is more of a family this year,” Horton explained. “We are all close and genuinely care about each other. We’re all pushing each other in practice, because we genuinely want each other to be the best we can be.” Girls Hurdlers With multiple underclassmen finding great success in the hurdles last year, a push for a state title isn’t out of sight. Last season, current junior Gaby Calixte and sophomore Jacklynne Okereke made deep runs in competition. Okereke burst onto the scene in the 100 meter hurdle. After strong showings in the regular season, Okereke had her best time of the season, putting her in second place in the Sectional round before competing in state. Calixte dominated the 300 meter all season
Junior Ellis Allen runs to the finish Photo by Litzy Segura
long. After winning the Eastlake Classic and earning runner-up in the Palatine Relays and Thomas McBride Invitational, she went on to win both the conference title as well as the Sectional. Never satisfied, Okereke has pushed herself already this season to make sure she returns back to state. “Recently, I’ve done harder workouts. Basically longer distances at higher intensities to build up my endurance,” Okereke explained. “This definitely gives me a leg up, because I will be able to run faster and stronger during races, having already being used to fast workout paces.” Outside of the top two, senior Denise Partee looks to build upon the momentum she built late last season in the 100 meter. Partee had top three finishes in her final three races, including a first place finish in JV conference and a third place finish at Sectionals, where she received her fastest time to date. Girls Sprinters With a collection of three strong relay sprint teams returning, the sprinters look to headline this year’s team and make a memorable trip down state. Sending three relay teams to the state finals is a huge achievement for any program, and to do it with zero seniors lined up is even more impressive. In the 4x100 relay, current seniors Ariel Logan, Chassa Pratt, sophomore Dystonae Clark and Calixte cruised to a Sectional win before Calixte was substituted out for senior Maia Hadaway ahead of the state race. Calixte joined the 4x200 and 4x400 teams instead. In both events, she replaced Okereke, who along with Clark, sophomore Rikki Gray and Logan in the 4x200 and Gray, Horton and Lipman in the 4x400 finished first and second in Sectionals. Now with the experience in these big races, the team feels they have the right mindset to improve in their success. “My mindset has to be totally different when running a big race, because you can have all the skills but if your mindset is off it’s really hard to be on [your top level],” Calixte explained. “I’m trying to stretch more and take better care of my body.” Individually, Clark and Hadaway lead the way. In the 200 meter, Hadaway came in second place in Sectionals and qualified for state competition. Clark finished second in the conference and fourth in Sectionals in the 100 meter, all in her first season. With many key sprinters returning this year, there is no reason not to expect an improvement on last year’s incredible results. [Full story on evanstonian.net]
Evanston Township High School