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SPOTLIGHT South Hadley High School’s student-run newspaper since 1919 Volume 97, Issue 1 | Fall 2016

HALL PATROL: Assistant Principal Pat Lemieux leads the way during the Senior Dress-Up Day parade Stay updated on South Hadley sports (page 11)

Learn more about the South Hadley tiger statues (page 3)

Meet the new staff! (page 4-5)


Spotlight, currently in its 97th year, is South Hadley High School’s student-run, open forum publication. Students create all content and make all editorial decisions.

Inside this issue

News 3

Features 4&5

Spotlight Editorial Board Erin Marx Kyle Pease Carlie Williams Staff reporters Jason Cooper Kaisie Forbes William Gagne Josephine Roman Trinity Sperry Chris Stevenson Icelynn Vazquez Joe Werenski

Humans of South Hadley 6&7

Features 8

Adviser Mr. B-G

Editorial 10

Sports 11

CONTACT US Facebook: @spotlight153 Twitter: @spotlight153 Instagram: @spotlight153 Email: Web: Phone: (413) 538-5063 Ext. 3512 Address: Spotlight Newspaper South Hadley High School 153 Newton Street South Hadley, MA 01007 2 ABOUT | Spotlight | Fall 2016

A note from the staff We are pleased to bring you the first Spotlight of the 2016-2017 school year. While our next print issue is scheduled for publication in January, you can get regular updates from the Spotlight social media, listed on the left. Our Instagram account, @Spotlight153, is our newest social media offering, and is regularly updated with pictures from school events and sports games.

Spotlight would love to publish your work, so if you’re intested in writing stories or taking pictures, please let any staff member or Mr. B-G know. We also welcome reader feedback and letters to the editor, which may be sent to A special thanks goes out to our advertisers and Easthampton Savings Bank for their ongoing support.

Tiger statues populate South Hadley

Contributed photo by Maureen McNally

Staff photo by Kyle Pease

TIGER CREATION: (Left) Students paint the high school’s tiger last year. (Right), the finished product outside in its new home.

Ceramic tigers illustrate community pride and student expression By Kyle Pease If you live in town, it’s likely you’ve seen the tiger statues popping up around town. The glossy finished, painted fiberglass statues have been a long time coming in the South Hadley Tiger Committee’s project to unify the community under the one symbol. Three years ago, the tiger committee was formed with one goal in mind: to unite South Hadley under tiger mascot. With some fundraising, the committee, made up of volunteers such as Mrs. Carver and Mr. Gardner, raised $4,000 from many in the community to build the statues. The committee then sent the money to Patrick Kiel of American Fiberglass Animals in Nebraska and waited for the tigers to arrive. And waited, and waited. After a year of waiting with no word from Kiel, the tiger committee came to the conclusion that they wouldn’t be receiving the promised statues. At a crossroads, the committee faced the decision of whether to move on and find a new vendor, or abandon the project altogether. Obviously, based on the tigers popping up all over the town, the committee decided to move on and raise more money to continue the project. Through more community fundrais-

ing as well as donations from private parties as well as the Town Reminder, the money was raised and given to ICON Poly, a company which has made other statues for nearby towns (Dinosaurs in Stanford, CT.) The town was finally going to get its tigers. Now, there are a total of 14 tigers dotted around town (see list on right). Many came together for the entire project, from the community fundraising to the volunteers working on the tiger committee, and the artists who used their own supplies to paint the statues, to a local body shop who offered to clearcoat the statues for free for weather protection and wear and tear. One tiger that everyone at the high school is familiar with is the one out front near the LED sign, which was created by art teacher Maureen McNally’s students. One of the most enjoyable aspects of the process, students said, was coming up with a creative theme. One side of the tiger represents “what is,” while the other side stands for “what could be.” The goal behind the design was to represent everyone in the tiger, seen by the four different shoes on its feet. Influenced by the phrase “walk a mile in my shoes,” the high school’s tiger sports a sneaker, work boot, Ugg, and L.L. Bean boot on its paws.

Tiger statue locations: • Plains Elementary- striped with the thumb prints of student and staff. • Mosier Elementary- named “Luke Strongwalker,” dedicated to a current South Hadley student. • Michael E. Smith Middle School- glow in the dark paint. • High School- Where we are and where we’re going. • Town Hall • Gaylord Library- donated by Hazen Paper • Buttery Brook Park- donated by fire dept. • E-ink • Easthampton Savings Bank • People’s Bank • ERA M. Connie Laplante Real Estate • Dr. Scott Smith Dentist Office • Fairway Wholesale • Clean Run Productions

Fall 2016 | Spotlight | 3 NEWS

MEET THE NEW TEACHERS First in a series of profiles on new faculty and staff

Forfa aims to make library an enticing ‘hub’ of the school

By Carlie Williams

Bleau brings culinary skills to high school Ezra Bleau is the new culinary arts teacher located Room 318; later on he will be working and managing the bistro that is currently under construction and slated for opening this winter. Bleau said he is enjoying working at the high school. “I like it a lot.,” he said. “It is better then my old school. It is very family orientated.” Bleau decided to come here because he wanted the challenge of starting up a new and comprehensive program. Before coming to South Hadley he was at Chicopee Comp for almost 4 years. We asked him what his favorite dish was to makeand he said chicken breast with apricots.

Contributed photo by Icelynn Vazquez Sarah Forfa has always wanted to work at a high school. She’s excited to get to know everyone and even teach here and there. Contributed photo by Icelynn Vazquez

Culinary arts teacher Ezra Bleau is looking forward to working with students in a new state-of-the-art kitchen and bistro.

New nurse Smith excited about helping students Oh how school nurse Sarah Smith loves it here. She is the

new nurse and she is always willing to help students. “ I used to go to Granby and they had some cut backs and since I live in South Hadley and my kid goes to South Hadley schools it was the perfect fit.” Smith used to work at East Meadow School of Granby. She decided to be a nurse because she loves working and was always interested in health. “ I like working with the students and getting to know them. That is my favorite part of the job.” The nurse’s office is across the hall from the main office, so be sure to poke in and say hi.

Contributed photo by Icelynn Vazquez School nurse Sarah Smith enjoys getting to know the students here. 4 Features| Spotlight| Fall 2016

Icelyn Vasquez interviewed new librarian Sarah Forfa, asking personal questions and questions about her life as well. She asked her how she liked her job so far and she responded with “ I love it. It’s the first school I have ever worked in. It’s amazing!” Forfa started in public libraries, but she knew she always wanted to work in a school, and thankfully there was an opening at the high school. She found out about the job through science teacher Jacob Masenior, whom she had been friends with prior to coming to the high school. Forfa was asked what made her want to become a librarian and she responded with, “I like to be able to help people, either with questions, research, or a book.” Forfa can usually be found at her desk in the library, and if you cannot find her there you can probably find her reading her favorite book “ A Tale of Two Cities” By Charles Dickens.

Brooks incorporates modern media in graphics and photography classes Whitney Brooks is a new teacher here at the high school. She teaches digital photography levels one and two. She previously worked as a middle school art teacher in Vermont last year. Prior to that, she taught as a middle school art and darkroom photography teacher outside of Boston. Apart from the classroom, she bakes at a local cafe in Amherst. When she is not busy working, she enjoys gardening, blogging, working on her own artwork and photography, and seeing different bands play in the area. Brooks’ interest in the photography teaching position at the high school was sparked for various reasons. She loves the study and discussion of art, especially art that is contemporary and found in the media. She liked the positive attitude of the administration and arts department towards photography classes and the funding that the school provided for them. She also loves the area of Western Massachusetts and was happy to come back— Brooks attended Smith College in Northampton as an undergraduate. Brooks’ goals for the year are “to help students gain proficient skills in photography as a whole and learn how to properly use a digital camera and Photoshop.” Her long-term goals as a teacher are “to grow the digital photography classes and teach more advanced levels of photography to students, and maybe even help them create their own portfolios.”

Staff photo by Carlie Williams Whitney Brooks is in love with art and is happy that she got to come to Western Massachusetts to teach students about it.

Fall 2016| Spotlight | Features 5

Humans Of South Hadley

“Meeting someone you can truly connect with might only happen once in a lifetime. I wouldn’t know how love at first sight feels. It hasn’t happened to me yet.”

Inspired by photographer Brandon Stanton’s ‘Humans of New York,’ Spotlight takes a peak into the lives of the high school’s students and staff

“I want to make video games. I feel like l have some good ideas and I want to make them for the rest of the gamers.”

-Freshman Jennifer Martinez.

-Sophomore Randy Viamari

“I was born on July 15, 1988. The hospital I was born in was the Providence hospital. Although I was born in that hospital, I grew up in Warwick Rhode Island.”

- Physical education teacher Shane Harrington

“I’m always studying to try and do good on tests. I’m also constantly working hard to succeed.”

- Freshman Sam Haviland

“My favorite place to go is my bed because I like to sleep. Also the kitchen because there’s food.”

-Sophomore Jake Poirier

“I want to become a Marine so I can protect our country from terror.”

-Sophomore JJ Solzak

Interviews and photos by Spotlight staff members Josephine Roman, Jason Cooper, and William Gagne 6 FEATURES | Spotlight | Fall 2016

Fall 2016 | Spotlight | FEATURES 7

MAZUR RECALLS FOND MEMORIES Former high school librarian takes a break from graduate studies to reminisce By Carlie Williams Spotlight reached out to former librarian Rebecca Mazur to find out what she’s been up to since leaving the high school at the end of last year: Where did you go, and why did you make that decision? I left SHHS to focus full-time on finishing a Ph.D. program at UMass-Amherst. It was such a tough decision to make. SHHS was my home for so long — about 10 years! What are some things you miss about the high school? OMG, there is SO MUCH that I miss. First, of course, are the students and the teachers. Almost all of my friends work at SHHS, so I don’t get to hear anyone’s news anymore! And I miss the library and the books — it was such a cool job to be surrounded by books all day, and to be in charge of making the library’s collection one that you all would actually like and use. I loved helping seniors with their college essays, since it helped me get to know so many students, and it was so much fun when they got accepted to schools. I guess the only thing that I DON’T really miss is having to be at school so early in the morning. Oh, and the printer. I don’t miss the library printer. That thing was my nemesis for years. What do you look forward to about where you are now? The work I do at UMass is interesting. I have a wonderful advisor at UMass who is guiding me through my program, and helping me learn new ways to improve schools. It’s a privilege for me to spend this year just reading and writing about ideas

that are important to me. One kind of rough thing is that sometimes I am called on to do, or explain, statistics. This is always a terrifying moment for me. When I was at the high school, I’d always ask Ms. Cross or Ms. Young for help with anything math-related. Now I have to actually look things up on my own, usually in a book I have called Statistics for Dummies. I have made a fool of myself this way more than once. What are some of your favorite memories from the high school? Favorite memories…there are just too many to count. The library was always such a fun place to be. Here are a few that I cherish: - Karaoke in the library. I’m not totally sure how the library got such GIANT speakers installed, but as soon as I saw them, I knew that they simply HAD to be used to sing along with Beyonce. That was always a good time. - During my first year as librarian, I had one student who just loved to play pranks on me. If you look hard enough, you can still see places in the library where he shot the insides of ballpoint pens into the ceiling. He also once let a live rabbit loose in the library, which I think he had found in the courtyard. I always tried to yell at him for doing stuff like that, but I could never keep a straight face because deep down I thought it was so funny. That was usually my problem when I tried to discipline students — most of the time, I couldn’t help but laugh! I never really got mad about things, except the rare times when kids were mean to each other, or said things that could make others feel offended or uncomfortable —that was the only thing that made me honestly angry.

Contributed photos by Brittany Rivera 8 FEATURES | Spotlight | Fall 2016

Spotlight adheres to the MA Student Free Expression Law

“Freedom of expression shall include without limitation, the rights and responsibilities of students, collectively and individually, (a) to express their views through speech and symbols, (b) to write, publish, and disseminate their views, (c) to assemble peacefully on school property for the purpose of expressing their opinions. No expression made by students in the exercise of such rights shall be deemed to be an expression of school policy and no school officials shall be held responsible in any civil or criminal action for any expression made or published by the students.�

Fall 2016 | Spotlight| 9

Donald Trump elected as president of the USA Donald J. Trump, pictured right, is the new president elect. Trump also won South Hadley High School’s mock election, with 120 votes versus Clinton’s 77, followed by Johnson with eight votes and Stein bringing up the rear with six. This, however, did not reflect the whole town, who voted Clinton. Spotlight agrees with the election, and feels the students at the high school are smart and made the right decision, because Trump is planning on bringing back American manufacturing, cutting taxes to the hard-working middle class, and allowing states to legalize marijuana if they choose to do so.

Creative Commons image by Nathan Congleton on Flickr

Ballot Questions: What Massachusetts voted and why we agree • Question 1: Should the Gaming Commission be allowed to issue an additional slot parlor? No. Gambling leads to violence and poverty. Try creating approved casinos first, see what happens, then re-vote. • Question 2: Should the state build more charter schools? No. This year, charters took $400 million from underfunded Massachusettts schools. We need to fund the schools that are already here. The cost of additional charters would triple in 10 years to over $1 billion a year. • Question 3: Should the state prohibit the sale of eggs, veal, or pork at a farm where animals are held in a cruel manner? Yes. We should prohibit confinement on animal farms and try to limit animal abuse. • Question 4: Should the state legalize marijuana? Yes. Marijuana is less addictive or harmful than legal prescription pain pills. It can also be taxed to help the state. 10 EDITORIAL | Spotlight | Fall 2016

Fall athletes show community and teamwork Hard work and positivity were hallmarks of teams’ unity and successes Cross country (girls)The girls cross country team finished the season 7-0 and captured its third league title in the last four years. Jocelyn Rondeau finished the regular season a perfect 6-0. Captains Hope Earle and Carolyn Watkins helped mentor an extremely young group of young ladies to the success that we had throughout the season. A number of freshman also made huge gains while continually getting faster throughout the year include Shelby Edwards, Emily Sowers, Sthela Sibley-Welch and Cora Graves. Allison Bergeron and Faith Mccullum added needed depth in many of our races. This is a young team that is looking forward Western Mass championship meet on the 13th of November. (Coach Rob Archambault) Field HockeyField hockey coach Tara Cole describes her team as, “a hardworking group of great kids, on and off the field.” Their undying hardwork has shone through as they made playoffs.

CheerleadingThe South Hadley cheerleaders are off to a terrific start to their season, led by six talented and dedicated seniors! The team started the season at UCA (Universal Cheerleaders Association) summer camp in Pine Forest, Pennsylvania in August and has been working hard ever since. The team was awarded a Superior Award at camp and offered an invitation to perform at the Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida in December. The goals of our cheer program are to support as many athletic teams as possible during the fall season, to perform important community service, and to compete in the Game Day cheer division. This season the team has worked at construction of the Mosier School playground with the fall athletic teams and will participate for the 11 th year at the Rays of Hope breast cancer walk on October 30. The first competition was held 10/22/16 at Holy Name HS in Worcester and the Tigers place 1 st and were awarded the sportsmanship award! We are off to a great start! League championships are November 4 at Central HS and the state Game day championship November 13 at Marlboro High School. The teams’ goal is to be the first SHHS cheer team to earn a bid to nationals at the state competition. (SHHS cheer coach, Jill Gagne)

FootballCoach Harrington who has been coaching football for almost 6 years explains how the team itself is similar to a family, and how he, “gets to know the players as people rather than a relationship that he would have with a normal student.” The team creates a sense of community with all the players supporting each other in a positive way. One of the team’s captains, senior Teddy Doyle, said how he looks up to all the players. “We are all a team. We are all in it together.” All the coaches on the team motivate their players, as Matthew Loughery, a junior on the team explained. Tthey push us to our potential, and past that.” A sophomore on the team, Jacey Rondeau , said, “the coaches want to see us succeed and become better people, which means a lot.” The South Hadley football team is a family to one another, supporting each other every step of the way. (By Kaisie Forbes and Trinity Sperry)

Staff photos by Erin Marx Fall 2016 | Spotlight | Sports 11

Senior Spirit Week 2016 The Class of ‘17 showed its pride during Spirit Week, where many of the students participated in each day’s theme.

Staff photos by Erin Marx and Chris Stevenson

Spotlight Volume 97, Issue One  

The fall 2016 issue of Spotlight, South Hadley High School's student-produced newspaper since 1919.