Vol. 50 Is. 2
The enterprise, Spring 2020
The Enterprise Vol. 50 Is. 2 - Spring 2020
Sophia Mouton Avery Bryan
3 “why i miss new orleans” Scholastic Gold Key and American Voices Nominee 4 Music Is The Key To My Soul Two students share their passion for music.
6 Finding A Balance How healthy eating contributes to success in school.
8 Opening Hearts And Homes A Captain Shreve family doubles in size.
Kaylyn Butler Kiya Hall Sydney Brunson Tyra Maxie
10 Living the American Dream The Caddo JROTC Corp. Commander’s journey. 12 A Whole New World Shreve’s foreign exchange students adapt to life in America. 14 Drumming To His Own Beat Big Chris fist bumps his way into the hearts of many. 16 Hitting The Sticks A new sport arrives at Captain Shreve.
Captain Shreve High School - 6115 E. Kings Highway, Shreveport, LA 71105 Faculty Sponor - Brandon Winningham 2
The enterprise, Spring 2020
why i miss new orleans
there aren’t as many canceled school days here, but i guess that’s what happens when there aren’t hurricanes, and the water pumps actually work. its weird how everything closes at ten, not even the walgreens stays open here it seems peoples’ lives just end after work. i love how the new orleans bridges dictate peoples’ lives, like how early you had to get up for school, and what time you had to leave your friends house to be home by curfew i miss the hour of traffic waiting for me as soon as i get in the car, the result of multiple car accidents on the bridge, plus that one guy on a motorcycle who thought he could skip it. i miss my house, the house i’ve lived in all my life, (minus the temporary relocation after katrina). i miss my family, my best friends, my teachers, my neighbors, even the homeless man i said good morning to on my walk to school. ––Sophia Mouton
The enterprise, Spring 2020
Music Is The Key To My Soul Two students share their passion for music. By Avery Bryan
here are many ways music can change the perspective or attitude someone has on life. Most people just enjoy listening to music, but there are many others who enjoy creating their own. Grace Barrett and Mark Raines are two out of the many musically inclined students at Captain Shreve. Barrett has a strong passion for singing, while Raines has a devotion toward playing the guitar. These students have taken the time in their lives to practice or learn new skills in order to inspire others to do the same. Even though there might be hundreds of people in a crowd, when Grace Barrett sings she transfers into a “surreal” moment where she’s alone with the stage. Singing helps her to feel great about herself and express her feelings through song. Although she may make mistakes and waver in confidence, she keeps going and redeems herself in order to regain that moment. Barrett loves what she describes as, “that emotion, that uniqueness of what you evoke when you sing.” Young high schoolers who are fully dedicated to music often start writing their own. Mark Raines mostly receives inspiration from other artists and people who also practice playing the guitar or write music. Writing down his thoughts on paper and putting them to a song makes him feel confident and accomplished. Life events and relationships have inspired him to write music. “Music is honestly just one of those elements that make our existence so amazing,” Raines said. Like most everyone, Barrett cannot go a day without listening to music. Music expresses her emotions on either good days or bad days. Not only can she find the perfect songs to make her happy, she can find just the right songs to express how happy she already is. “It genuinely makes me feel happy,” Barrett said. “It’s something I love to do.” 4
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Raines enjoys creating and writing music whenever he can. Whenever he plays music, it brings everyone together and allows them to express how they feel. Playing his guitar allows Raines to relieve stress and relax. Raines feels that music helps him through tough times and is one of the many essentials to having a good life. “It is a great way to entertain people and express the way that you feel,” Raines said. Barrett began singing about 11 years ago. Her passion for singing began when she started taking voice lessons in first grade and has progressed throughout the years. When Barrett was younger, she went to see a few Broadway plays in New York. This is where she experienced her passion for singing.
“Music is honestly just one of those elements that make our existence so amazing.” “Nothing else matters. It’s just me and the song,” Barrett said. Like Barrett, Raines also shares the love of music. Raines started playing guitar in 5th grade and has been playing ever since. Before he started playing guitar, Raines played violin for about five years. Raines began by playing classical guitar, but now he has expanded his range by playing more modern pop songs. He recommends the guitar for anyone interested in learning to play music. “You can just pick up a guitar and start playing,” Raines said. “With a violin, it’s a lot harder.” Barrett began acting and singing in second grade by participating in elementary school plays. She joined the Academy
of Children’s Theater once she reached 5th grade and she has done many other plays and even Christmas concerts with her voice coach. Barrett also participated in Songbook South competitions. While she was involved in the theater company, Barrett won a total of three awards for three years for best actress and musical performance. Although the accolades are great, that is not her main motivation. “It makes me just feel amazing to be on a stage just singing a song for somebody,” Barrett said. So far, Raines has already started making his own music come alive. He has been playing his guitar at church almost every week. Raines also performed in the Captain Shreve talent show, Showboat, last year. He has not won any awards yet, but like Barrett, the accolades are secondary. “I really just like entertaining people,” Raines said. Barrett plans to go to college and major in business. She also hopes to major in musical theater or acting and singing. No matter where her path takes her, she knows she can rely on her passion and teach singing to others who want to learn. “I love to help and teach kids how to sing,” Barrett said. “It brings me the joy and confidence of happiness.” After high school, Raines plans to go to college and take classes for music and guitar. He has already started writing music, but he is not totally sure if his music will go anywhere. No matter where he lands, Raines will continue to play guitar. In the six years he has been playing, Raines has learned persistence. As the years went on, he has learned to enjoy playing guitar and always looks forward to playing it. Both students value what music has done for them. “Now it’s kind of become sort of a stress release,” Raines said. “It’s taught me to honestly be true to myself,” Barrett said.
Seniors Grace Barrett (top) and Mark Raines (bottom). The enterprise, Spring 2020
Finding A Balance How healthy eating contributes to success in school. by Genene Carter
hough most students know they should be eating healthy, many struggle to do so. With the constant and convenient supply of unhealthy snacks and drinks, it can be difficult to keep up a wholesome diet. As the coach of Girls’ PE, track and field, and volleyball, Marita Hunt knows a thing or two about healthy habits. “Healthy eating...fuels your body,” Hunt said. “Sugar products will give you that immediate energy but will soon fade.” In some studies, a poor diet has even been linked to slower performance academically. Putting unhealthy products into your body can only yield poor results. “Nutrition and diet affect how you feel, look, think and act,” Hunt explained. “A bad diet results in lower core strength, slower problem-solving ability and muscle response time, and less alertness.” Ginger Gustavson, principal at Captain Shreve, also weighed in on how a balanced diet impacts our overall health. “We have to be physically healthy so that we’re at our very best mentally [and] emotionally—it all works together,” Gustavson said. One reason students often don’t get proper nutrition is that unhealthy products are so readily available. With a vending machine around every corner, it is so easy for students to grab a bag of chips whenever they want. “The foods and drinks in the vending machines are not good choices,” Hunt said. “They do have some healthy snacks, but the majority of the snacks are high in calories and fats.” However, the Caddo Parish School Board has put some new regulations in place concerning the foods in the vending machine this year. “We have been in the process over the last six weeks of getting in compliance with those requirements. We were required to change out some of the items that were in 6
The enterprise, Spring 2020
the vending machine, and that process was completed by January 1,” Gustavson said. One of the updated requirements for lunch vending is that each item must have less than 350 calories. “We will be seeing changes—the pizza will be a smaller slice…or...the honey baked ham sandwich will be cut in half,” Gustavson explained. The school is also putting emphasis on having only diet drinks available, and especially pushing the sale of water. “In the cold weather, the water doesn’t sell as well, but we did have very high sales of water in the fall, when it’s warm, and I think that’ll pick back up in the spring,” Gustavson said. One important thing to note is that although each individual item must have a certain number of calories and fat, the number of items students purchase is not regulated. “We are cutting the portions and meeting these requirements, but if students are still choosing to purchase multiple items, are we really solving anything?” Gustavson wondered. Gustavson plans to make the changes more public around the school through morning announcements. “It really does come down to us being informed,” she said. “As adults and leaders, the onus is on us to share more about healthy choices. I feel like if we’re sharing that out through students, then we can really make a big impact.” Even though the new requirements do make an impact on the school, Gustavson adds that only about six percent of students participate in lunch vending. “I think typically we sell about 100 lunches a day,” Gustavson said. “So we still have 1600 students that are either eating in the cafeteria (and their requirements are not as stringent as these)... or bring[ing] their lunch from home, and we don’t have any control over that. But every little bit
that we can do helps.” Teachers can do their job to the best of their ability, but in the end, they cannot force students to study in order to do well on tests. In the same way, no one can force students to be healthy. “Ultimately…people…have to be intrinsically motivated—they have to want to be healthy,” Gustavson said. “There are always going to be opportunities to choose… [between] a healthy option and a not-sohealthy option.” Even though highly-processed, unhealthy foods seem to be everywhere, Hunt has some advice on how to resist the temptations. She suggests that students “choose whole foods instead of processed, say no to sugary drinks, keep healthy food readily available, and [use] smaller plates.” Keeping up a balanced diet is not just a daily choice: it is a way of life. “Healthy eating is important for an active lifestyle and a longer life span,” Hunt said. Gustavson agrees that in addition to a healthy diet, “exercise has a huge part to play in us being physically and mentally and emotionally sound.” “Food is part of it, but…a lot of our students play sports and do other activities to keep them healthy,” she said. “That’s something that I would like for us, as a school, to talk more about, the exercise piece.” In the end, Gustavson and Hunt agree that putting in a little extra effort to eat healthy has a big impact on the rest of our health and our performance in school. “Everything works together in our physical health, it’s all interrelated, so we’re going to be at our best mentally…academically…[and] emotionally if we’re physically healthy,” Gustavson said. “It goes a long way into us...feeling confident that we’re making healthy choices and seeing the results.”
The outdoor vending machines. Most machines now have a tap-to-pay option. The enterprise, Spring 2020
Opening Hearts and Homes A Captain Shreve family doubles in size. by Jakayla Norris
mily and Thomas Reich, parents of Captain Shreve senior Tori Reich, never imagined that they would go from a family of four one day to a family of eight the next. Many adoption stories are seen as heartwarming, uplifting, and possibly inspiring. This one is no different. According to the Donaldson Adoption Institute, about 81.5 million Americans have considered adopting a child at one time in their lives. Mrs. Reich has known that she wanted to adopt since she was a young girl. “Honestly I guess you could say it was a calling that God placed in my heart,” Mrs. Reich said. Mr. Reich, however, wasn’t on board with the idea up until 2018. “He started thinking about Tori going off to school after graduation and our son getting older, how quiet it would be,” Mrs. Reich said. “He wasn’t ready for that. We had a friend who hosted an older child and saw the need for adoption. After praying about it he felt this is what we should do.” Hosting programs are used to identify possible permanent families for older children that are waiting to be adopted. Hosting allows the children to experience family life and be introduced to a new environment. The Reichs were connected to four siblings from Ukraine, and they were able to host the three oldest siblings during Christmas of 2018. Mrs. Reich described them as being “sweet and shy, but affectionate.” “They asked us the first night if they were to call us mom and dad or Thomas and Emily,” Mrs. Reich said. “I of course started crying and said yes, call us mom and dad. The hosting program is not an adoption program, so we weren’t even supposed to say anything about adoption. We did tell them when it was closer to time for them to return that they would be coming back forever. We all cried.” “We had already completed our home 8
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study which was one of the biggest steps in the process. The next big step was the dossier. Then there was a lot of waiting.” Because they adopted from Ukraine, the dossier, or paperwork, had to be translated and approved before Mr. and Mrs. Reich could travel to the Ukraine. They traveled there three times, to several different cities. “We stayed in Kiev the first few days and had our appointment with the social services. They granted us permission to visit the children.” Over the summer, maintenance is done at the orphanage and the staff gets time off. During this time, the children are moved to camps. “We traveled by train to meet our driver who took us to meet the little one for the first time. The next day we drove to what seemed like the middle of nowhere to see the oldest three.” They stayed in Mariupol for the next two days and went back to Kiev to fly home. During their second trip, they flew to the airport in Kiev and then to an overnight train in Mariupol. “We were there for a few days. We had court and were declared their parents. We started the trip home the next day.” The third trip was their longest. “It started the same as the second. We finished paperwork in Mariupol after a couple of days. Then we picked the kids up and drove about 6 hours to Kramatorsk. Took care of paperwork there and then boarded a train to Kiev. We rented an apartment there for about a week. We had to take care of paperwork at the U.S. Embassy.” They arrived home on October 15, 2019. The family had to get used to the changes and make many adjustments once the children were brought home. “We divide and conquer the best we can,” Mrs. Reich said. “We can’t always stay and watch one of the kids games because someone else has to be at a different loca-
tion. Sacrifices are definitely made, like vacation destinations will have to be different and shopping is different.” Another thing the family had to adjust to was the language barrier. The siblings are from Ukraine, but speak Russian because they were on the border of Russia. “We used our phones to translate,” Tori said. “They’re getting pretty good at English.” Alex, the oldest of the adopted siblings, is a freshman at Captain Shreve. He’s also on the soccer team. The transition of having a new home, as well as moving to a completely new continent, was hard for Alex to get used to. “There’s a lot of different things,” he said. “Different people. School is different. There were a lot of bad things [in the Ukraine], there’s war right now. Here it’s better.” Tori agrees that having their parents adopt the siblings was very beneficial for them. “You’re taking them out of an orphanage and giving them a better place to stay.” Transitioning from living with one sibling to living with five can be a major adjustment. “Me and my brother are complete opposites. We didn’t really spend a lot of time together, and now with the other kids we’re always together.” The older a child is, the harder it is for them to get adopted. While babies are often adopted very quickly, the adoption rates of children over age eight decrease significantly. When a child reaches their teens, the rate drops even more. If a child is between the ages of 12 and 18, their consent is required for the adoption to occur. “I met with them and they wanted to adopt us and I agreed with them,” Alex said. “I thought they were nice.” “[Older children] need a family just as much as little ones,” Mrs. Reich said. “It is very sad but true that most don’t want
to adopt older children. We specifically planned to adopt older because of that.” “You have to take the child as they are. They need to know that they are safe and secure. That they are loved unconditionally, Mrs. Reich said. “It is not always going to be an easy road but each child is 100% worth it. The adoptees also need to know it takes sacrifice and change. Their lives won’t be the same after adoption, but at the same time it will be great.” “I think every family should seriously consider opening their hearts and homes. If it is meant to be everything will fall into place,” Mrs. Reich said. “We all get so caught up in materialism that we don’t stop to help others in true need. Every child should have a family and a loving home.”
The Reich family. The enterprise, Spring 2020
Living The American Dream The Caddo JROTC Corp. Commander’s journey by Kaylyn Butler
airobi, Kenya is 8569.3 miles away from Shreveport, Louisiana. It is home to thousands of beautiful, endangered animals and breathtaking beaches. The nineteen hour flight it takes to get there is worth it to see the country’s culture in action. Tourists from around the world visit annually to climb Mt. Kenya and visit the National Animal Reserve, where all the animals are kept safe from poachers. 3,918.8 miles away from Nairobi is Accra, Ghana. Just as well known as its sister country and just as beautiful. Our journey begins here. In 2004, Rachel Naa Anyema Clottey was born in the aforementioned Kenya, Africa. She eventually spent most of her young life in Ghana with her mother’s side of the family. At the young age of nine, her family applied for American Green Cards, and, having received them, Clottey officially became an American citizen. Adapting to life in America was very difficult, but Clottey always knew how to persevere. Being in a new country and starting a new school in the winter of 2012 was shocking for a non-American born citizen, with everything being so different from what Clottey originally preconceived of America. “When [my brother and I] were younger,” Clottey said, “we would watch American movies and think that everyone there was rich and loud.” Clottey discovered that there’s so much more about America, and Captain Shreve, as a whole. Having originally come from a very strict and education based childhood in Ghana, she finds there are so many new things in life and American culture. “My father moved us here for better opportunities for when me and my brother grow up.” Clottey said. Staying true to her father’s words, she takes each and every opportunity and makes the best of it. Moving to a new country can be hard 10
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for anyone. When first arriving here with her older brother, Clottey saw everything as overwhelming and too much to take in all at once. She often reminisces about her childhood in the east Ghanian sun, and she loves to tell stories based around her childhood mischief and rebellion. One story in particular stands out. “It was a Saturday. We had a day off school and I decided to have some fun with my life,” Clottey said. To set off her plan, Clottey went to recruit a friend to make it feel more genuine. The plan was simple: go shopping, come home early, and hide in plain sight. Around four o’clock, her grandfather pulled up to his house in Accra Village hoping to see his granddaughter and her friend, only to be greeted by an empty house. His first move was to call her phone. No answer. “We watched him call our phones and he looked so lost,” Clottey snickered, “we could barely hold in our laughter.” Thirty minutes later, when he finally called the police after asking around the neighborhood, they answered. The police knew little of the game Clottey and her friend were playing out. Four hours after the search started, Rachel and her cohort found themselves hungry, so they came out of the closet only to be greeted by police and hysterical guardians. That bubbly personality carried over with her when entering America. “My dad’s side of the family says I get my mischievousness from my mother,” Clottey said, “and I didn’t believe them at first. Not until in America where everyone started pointing it out.” Her first taste of the American schools system was Youree Drive Middle School. She came to the school near the beginning of the second semester. With such a wide smile and a great personality, it wasn’t hard for her to find new friends. “When I first got to Youree I found a
couple friends, but now that I’m older I realize they were more mocking of my accent than being curious about my culture.” It is already difficult for someone in their teenage years to develop their identity and fit in, but it is especially difficult when someone is moving to a new country and is immersed in a totally new culture. Entering into high school was no different. Following her older brother, Gabriel, Clottey decided to go to Captain Shreve High School. Youree Drive Middle School was already the feeder school for CSHS, so it was an easy choice for Rachel to make. Since her freshman year, Rachel has been part of eight different clubs, each ranging from academic tournaments to sports clubs. Of those eight, she manages to be captain or co-captain of over half of them. During her sophomore year she was blessed with the opportunity to serve on the Homecoming Court with the rest of the girls, wearing a traditional Aftican dress, never once subduing her culture. She continued to do so for the rest of her high school career. The accolades kept coming: a major student leader for Junior Reserve Officers Training Corp ( JROTC), a promotion from S-3 (security officer) to Battalion Commander, and achieving the honor of Caddo Parish Corp. Commander. Her journey to success didn’t stop there. Rachel Naa Anyema Clottey received the highest honor capable of a high school JROTC cadet: The Legion of Valor award. Putting hundreds of hours into community service for Z Club, Key Club, BSA, and JROTC all led to winning the Legion of Valor Award. At the beginning of her senior year of high school, Lt. Colonel David Mcgee had already decided that Rachel was one of the best leading cadets in Captain Shreve Gator Battalion, beginning the process to become the recipient of the Legion of Valor award. According to the US ARMY JROTC,
the Legion of Valor Award represented
Rachel is promoted to Corps. Commander (top). Rachel’s countless hours of service to her community, academic accomplishments far beyond those of her peers, and leadership that defines this young woman’s character and person. The award, Legion of Valor with Bronze Cross for Achievement, is given to a very select group of young men and women across the nation. This award is so unique that it must be presented by a member of the Legion of Valor or by someone who holds or has held a military position of appropriate prestige. Rachel Clottey received the award from LT. Colonel David Mcgee. Colonel Mcgee was there every step of the way to ensure the award. “I’m especially proud of Rachel and I’m no less surprised that she won that award,” LT. Colonel Mcgee said, the pride evident in his voice. “She worked so hard and she absolutely deserves it.” After her high school career she’s planning to attend Howard University on a full academic scholarship. Clottey is determined to major in International Business and minor in Mass Communications. Having Howard as her first choice helps her feel like she is living the African-American Dream. Everything that Rachel has achieved is by her own means. Every award, every distinction, every person she’s made smile with her enthusiasm is her life’s work. “I love what I do with my people. I feel my best when I’m helping people.” The enterprise, Spring 2020
A Whole New World Shreve’s foreign exchange students adapt to life in America. by Kiya Hall
aving to move away from your home country and moving to a new one can be terrifying for anyone, let alone a teenager. Foreign exchange students feel the pressure of being in a new environment without knowing what the people in the new country are like and how they act with each other. They feel the stress of having to meet new people, deal with another range of personalities, and live with a host family. Captain Shreve’s two foreign exchange students have felt these pressures but have also thrived. Natalie Paczkowsi is from Germany, and although she loves being an exchange student, the familiarities of home are often missed. Local cuisine is a part of any culture, and Natalie often misses her favorite, Kaiserschmarrn. “It’s like lasagna, and my dad used to make it for me,” Paczkowski said. “I miss my dad cooking for me.” In addition to missing home, engaging with American teenagers has been an obstacle for Natalie. “It was super hard getting to know the boundaries of everyone because you don’t want to offend people,” Paczkowski said. “I’m more of a person who jokes about stuff that I don’t mean in a rude way.” Although she has had initial hurdles like any exchange student, Paczkowski’s fears have evaporated since attending Shreve. “I love the people Shreve has,” Paczkowski said. “I think finding friends when you’re somewhere new is hard, but everyone was so nice and the teachers are so amazing to me.” Her schoolwork has been somewhat of a surprise. “School was harder in Germany than it is in America,” Paczkowski said. German students tend to go to five different secondary schools during their 5th to 10th grade years. Most of the time, the four different kinds of schools they can attend 12
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are Hauptschule, Realschule, Gymnasium, or Gesamtschule. The Hauptschule (grades 5-9) teaches the same subjects as the Realschule and Gymnasium, but at a slower pace and with some vocational-oriented courses. The Realschule (grades 5-10 in most states) leads to part-time vocational schools and higher vocational schools. The Gymnasium leads to a diploma called the Abitur and prepares students for university study or for a dual academic and vocational credential. The Gesamtschule, or comprehensive school, is only found in some of the states. It takes the place of both the Hauptschule and Realschule. It enrolls students of all ability levels in the 5th through the 10th grades. Natalie has enjoyed all of her classes, including art and Spanish. “She draws really well and I’m proud that she attends Shreve with us,” Caleb Phillips, her art teacher, said. Despite the language barrier in all her classes, she has made a lot of friends that welcomed her with open arms and talk to her to understand her and her challenges here at Shreve. “Natalie is super quiet and she is super engaged in the lesson,” Marion Scott, her Spanish teacher, said. “She is an amazing student, she is super sweet to everyone and she at least waits for her turn to answer the questions.” Paczkowski lives with her host family for the school year, and then she has to leave and go back to Germany. A host family helps guide the transfer student in the country they are staying in. Paczkowski quickly bonded with her host family. “At first it is really really awkward and you don’t really know how to act and behave,” Paczkowski said. “But the longer you stay with them, the more comfortable you get, and now I don’t even call them my host parents because they feel as if they are my real parents.” Bernardo Boschi, enjoys much of what
Captain Shreve and Shreveport have to offer. “I love the food here, especially Raising Cane’s. I love Cane’s,” Boschi said. “Their sauce is really good, and their fries are really nice.” He enjoys the food America has to offer but misses the food from Italy. “You would normally grow your own food in Italy and have home-cooked meals, which is normally a family effort to cook.” Since Italy has very fertile soil, many families farm their own crops such as rice, tomatoes, olives, grapes, and citrus fruits. Most farms in Italy are owned and operated by families. Boschi has had some good times in America, but he misses a lot of things from Italy. “I miss all my friends and family,” Boschi said. “I really miss the food and the environment in Italy.” Just like Paczkowski, Boschi had to go through the same thing, getting to know his host family and adapting to American life. It might have been hard at first, but he slowly got the hang of it. “It’s strange living with new people you barely know rather than people who you spent a lot of time with,” Boschi said. “It’s like starting a new life, you start from nothing, from 0, but you have to be open-minded and take in all the goods in your new daily life and a new culture.” The diversity at Shreve has been rewarding but challenging. “There’s a lot of different cultures in school and it makes it harder for me to learn how to interact,” Boschi said. “It’s so diverse and it’s really crazy.” The dynamics of the school works differently from his previous schools in Italy. They go through five different stages. Boschi went through a challenge in connecting with new friends, just like Paczkowski. “Everyone here has been really nice and
Natalie Pazchowski (left) and Bernardo Boschi (right). open with me,” Boschi claims smiling. “I love how everyone was so nice to me when I came here and it was nice for everyone to try to understand and ask me questions about my life in Italy versus in America.” He experienced a lot in Italy, but he loves the job opportunities they offer in America. “I wish to go into the medical field,” Boschi said. “I love the jobs you can have in America.” You can apply for a job in Italy at 15 but it can vary depending on what you want to apply for. He lives for any job he can take here and jumps at any opportunity to suc-
ceed at it. Boschi is excited about the activities Shreve has to offer, but he also loves to learn every day. “He’s always trying to learn more about America and the economy here versus in Italy,” Mitch Fant, Boschi’s civics teacher, said. “The economy in Italy is horrible compared to the economy America has,” Boschi said. Boschi challenged himself by playing defensive end on the Captain Shreve football team, and, for a new player, impressed his coaches.
“He caught on pretty fast for it being his first year playing American football,” Bryant Sepulvado, Shreve’s head football coach, said. “Berny had a bit of trouble learning how to play at first but he caught on fast and wants to play more.” No matter how different these two might be to Shreve students, they always felt welcomed here. “Everyone has been so accepting of me and I want to thank everyone for that,” Pazchowski said. “Everyone has helped me a lot since I’ve been here and I really enjoy being here,” Boschi said. The enterprise, Spring 2020
Drumming To His Own Beat Big Chris fist bumps his way into the hearts of many. by Sydney Brunson
Chris and his instructor, Renee Caldwell.
hen you look around Captain Shreve’s campus, you’ll find many familiar sights. One familiar sight for many is Big Chris. Chris Benjamin, known by most as Big Chris, is known for his hugs and fist bumps. In the fall of 2017, Chris was transferred to Captain Shreve. His previous school, Fair Park, was shut down and turned into a middle school, so Chris as well as Renee Caldwell, his autism instructor, transferred to Captain Shreve. Chris’s first priority was to play in Captain Shreve’s band, as he was an active member of Fair Park’s Band. Fortunately, he was able to transition right into the Gator Band. Jacqueline Allen, Chris’s mother, explains that Chris is on the autism spectrum. 14
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He was around the age of three when they first had him tested, and he was diagnosed with Autism and a communication delay. Speaking for Chris was always a hardship, and Allen recalled that he did not start speaking until age six. Speech therapy has helped Chris over time. Captain Shreve, and especially its band, has helped Chris thrive. He started to play the drums when he was eight-years-old at church. Chris’s communication skills and his tolerance to be in big crowds were heightened with each chance he had to participate in the band. When he was younger he was very quiet and kept to himself, but high school has opened him up and now he is very loving and friendly. The band always keeps him very motivated.
Chris picks up a lot from the other students, and this helps him be who he wants to be. Loud noises in the past used to really bother him, but now his mother has to tell him to turn down the music. According to Allen, Joe Cagle, Captain Shreve’s band director, has been a huge help in making sure Chris is fitting in well and is able to thrive. Caldwell says that people with autism just want to be treated like the rest, and they will respect you if you respect them. She gives him independence to go to band and to the gym, and this has helped him grow. Benjamin’s mother is surprised by how many people he knows around campus and how many people know him. “I never would have thought he would go by the principal’s office and just sit in and have a conversation.” Once Chris graduates he is going to enroll in a program at SUSLA where he will learn how to live and work with assistance. The program is similar to the rest of the college, where students learn and work together. The program increases the likelihood of these students graduating and finding a job that will suit their needs. There is a band program at SUSLA where he will be continuing his favorite thing. His mother says that, “band just really enhances Chris.” Maria Edwards, an assistant principal at Shreve, was the one who connected Caldwell to Cagle. Chris started band camp the summer before the new year started in 2017. The band at Shreve was a lot bigger than Fair Park’s, and they performed field shows. Chris wasn’t able to do field shows before coming to Shreve because of the transition of dealing with a routine and the noise involved. Edwards remembers the day that Chris came to Captain Shreve. That was the first day they gave each other a fist bump, and now that’s what they do every time they see each other. She is thankful for the community in place at Shreve. “The willingness and openness of Mr. Cagle, and our whole administration and
Chris and his family after a band performance. the clear communication really made the transition smoother for Chris,” Edwards said. Cagle has been working at Captain Shreve for over fourteen years. He understood that Chris had been playing band at his previous school, and how important band is to many students. He wanted to make sure that Chris was part of the Gator Band. Chris feels at home in the band room and with the band members, so he is able to be comfortable with his music. Cagle says that Chris has an ear for the music. “He picks up music really fast,” Cagle said. “He has to hear it. We will play him something a couple of times he will get it.” Chris has been playing the bass drum for the past three years now. His favorite
time of the year is when he gets to perform a field show. This is when the band members come out onto the football field to play during halftimes. The rumble of the drums is Chris’s favorite part. “Playing drums isn’t hard,” Chris said. “I like how much bass there is.” Chris often wakes up at three in the morning as he can’t sleep well. This is one of the many symptoms those with autism can have. When he has trouble sleeping, Chris again turns to music. Singing helps coax him back to sleep, and it also calms him down when stressed. His favorite drum cadence, which is a work played just by percussion, is “War and Thunder.” His favorite song is “Thunder,” as it is very loud. Chris gets into the music,
and his enthusiasm can be infectious. “I like to dance to cultural arts,” Chris said. “I was dancing and all of a sudden a student started to dance with me.” Senior Maurice Mazen has been playing in the band for the last four years. He has known Chris for two years, and when he first met him he was very excited for him to play for the Gator Band. Maurice says that Chris knows when someone is down and when they need a hug. Drumline is a huge family. They support each other and help each other when needed. “I think band means everything to Chris,” Mazen said. “We look after him, and he looks after us.”
The enterprise, Spring 2020
Hitting The Sticks A new sport arrives at Captain Shreve. by Tyra Maxie competitions. “They compete with schools all across the nation, so they will be playing a team from out of state,” Doughty said. Esports isn’t just about recreational playing. It can develop a variety of skills for players. “Games can teach you a lot,” Doughty said. “It depends on the genre of course, but if you’re playing really what you’d call twitch style games they’re really good for hand-eye coordination. If you’re playing team-based games, they’re really amazing for communication, cooperation, and putting together game plans. If you’re playing individual games that challenge you, it can be a really big thing for sportsmanship as well.” Professional gaming has become a lucrative career option for many players. Photo by Florian Olivo on Unsplash
aptain Shreve High School has over a dozen sports teams, but if you take a look at the list, one of those teams might surprise you. High school Esports is growing in popularity and offering a whole new group of students amazing opportunities for personal and professional growth. Michael Doughty is the team sponsor and grew up in an era that pioneered the gaming industry. “I’m a big gamer,” Doughty said. “I haven’t done esports, but I have been playing video games for a very long time.” The school year 2019-2020 is Captain Shreve’s very first year to actually have an esports team. “Yeah, we hit some bumps like any first-year club will,” Doughty said, “but we put together two teams to compete.” The two teams are divided by the games they play: Super Smash Bros. and Rainbow 6: Siege. Doughty started playing video games when his father got a Nintendo for the household in the early 90s. 16
The enterprise, Spring 2020
“My father mastered Mario over a 24 hour period where he played late into the night,” Doughty said. Doughty had to catch up with him on his own game and that’s what got him hooked. Doughty doesn’t plan on becoming a big esports player, but he is “sure some of our team members would love to have that in their future.”
“Games can teach you a lot.” There are close to 30 people that are involved with the club at Captain Shreve. Not all of them compete in big tournaments, but the team was represented on a national level. “We had 7 playing in the winter national tournament,” Doughty said. Shreve’s Rainbow 6 team won their first round of play. Unlike any other sport the school offers, all esports games are online
“It’s just a way to kind of have fun and relax.” To Doughty, being a big gamer is more community based than one might think. He has friends that he plays video games with, and it’s just a way to connect and keep up with one another. For the more competitive Captain Shreve MagazineThe Enterprisefeel a sense of community and achievement for completing something with their teammates and excelling at something that they put a lot of time and passion into. For some, it can be a simple escape from the day to day stresses of life. “It’s just a way to kind of have fun and relax,” Doughty said. The club at Shreve is open to all grades, but according to Doughty, “there are some professionals that play up until they are 30 or 40 years old.” Tyian Warmsley is a senior esports team member for Captain Shreve. Warmsley says that he became an esports player because he’s been playing games for a really long time.
Sponsor Michael Doughty (left) and the Captain Shreve esports team. “I felt like this was my chance to get involved in something that I like to do,” Warmsley said. Warmsley plans to start his own team tournament in the future “The team that I’m on, I’m doing a 2K tournament, and I use only 3 players.”
Players can compete individually or in teams.
Photo by Alex Haney on Unsplash
“I felt like this was my chance to get involved in something that I like to do.” Warmsley has been a part of the esports team since its first meeting. “My advice for the future esports members is to try your best, bond with the players on this team and you will have a great time. I promise you will,” Warmsley said. Esports is more than just playing a game to Warmsley. “It means making friends, and building a bond with each other.” The enterprise, Spring 2020
SHREVE MEDIA Captain Shreve High School - Shreveport, LA