The Quill By the students, for the students
2017: The World In Review
Maddie Sanders 18’
The world in 2017 was defined by the word ‘change’. Largely, that change came in the form of politics. New leaders were elected worldwide, progressive reforms were pushed through, and foreign policy consistently reached new tensions. January 20th marked the inauguration of the 45th U.S. President, Donald J. Trump. U.S. elections have always impacted global politics and the global economy. Following Trump’s election, the world saw a series of new leaders take office. French politics gave way to a tense race between Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, ultimately resulting in a Macron victory. Kenya elected President Uhuru Kenyatta and as the year comes to a close, Zimbabwe has recently found itself with a new president, Emmerson Mnangagwa. Elections always stimulate political discussion in countries, yet sometimes give way to heightened political turmoil. Countries such as Venezuela and Turkey saw firsthand the collision of oppressive politics and repressed citizens. The political turmoil in Venezuela began with anti-government protests rooted in animosity for dictator Nicolas Maduro. In Turkey, the harmful political state is the cause of tensions between the Kurds and the Islamic State. In addition to the election
December 15, 2017
the year just as much. On a positive of new world leaders, foreign note, in England, Queen Elizabeth II, policy has become perhaps the became the first British Monarch to most important global issue. Major global foreign policy-related reach her 65th anniversary, India revealed a new tax reform plan to issues have defined 2017. Among the most significant: the Brexit bill benefit the country’s gross domestic - a policy move for Britain to leave product (GDP), New Zealand elected the country’s second female prime the European Union - passed, the minister from the Labor Party, Jacinda U.S. began to launch airstrikes at Ardern, and India and China reached a Syrian bases, the Trump border agreement, easing tensions over a administration small stretch of Himalayan territory. left the Paris Climate As 2017 draws to a close, Agreement, the world finds itself in Middle Eastern the midst of continuing countries political and social such as Saudi change. Yet this time of Arabia, An image of the Bahrain, the U.A.E., and world’s leaders at the Egypt cut off diplomatic G20 Summit, held in year is often considered a time of reflection and with that, a time relations Hamburg, Germany not to simply dwell on the bad, in July, 2017 with Qatar, accusing the but to look ahead to a new year country of supporting terrorism, and consider how all that has North Korea tested its first ICBM, happened in 2017 will shape the China issued its first ever smog red future. alert, the G20 summit was held in Hamburg, Germany, Catalonia, a small region of Spain, made a plea 2017: America in Review for independence, citing its own Charlotte Dean 18’ individuality as reason to break off from Spain, and finally, the leader January: News: One day after the inauguration of of ISIL, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was found dead. President Trump, millions of people Every year is met with its took to the streets and participated in share of tragedies, and 2017 was the Women's March. no different. Terrorist attacks were spread throughout the year. Among Movies: Nominations for the Academy the more talked about attacks awards announced: La La Land, Hidden included the Ariana Grande concert bombing in England, the Figures, and Moonlight were all up for van attack in Barcelona, Spain, and major awards. most recently the truck-ramming attack carried out in New York February: City. News: Trump administration revokes Despite the often tumultuous global climate of 2017, Obama orders on protection of gender smaller global events characterized identity under Title IX.
Movies: Moonlight wins best picture at the academy award, Mahershala Ali is the first muslim american to receive this award. Sports: Super bowl Ll: New England Patriots defeat the Atlanta Falcons, 34-28. March: News: Trump administration signs order of immigration ban, which was revised to be more politically correct, by one having the ban affect non US citizens. More news: British Prime minister, Theresa may announces article 50 which begins the process of withdrawal from the European union. April: News: March for Science- people around the world gather to protest climate change, and how it’s being handled by the US government. Arts: Tupac Shakur Electric Light Orchestra, Joan Baez, Journey, Pearl Jam are inducted into the Rock and Roll hall of fame. May: News: New Orleans city council removes confederate statue of President Jefferson Davis, the second removal of four planned removals. International: France bans breeding of dolphins and killer whales in captivity and orders for animal parks to expand habitats to house the animals. Attacks: Bombing occurs at Manchester arena at the end of Ariana Grande's show. June: News: President Trump withdraws from Paris Climate agreement, that was enacted by Former President Obama.
Movies: Gal Gadot, starring as Wonder Woman breaks the box office. Surpassing many of the other marvel character movies. July: Politics: Efforts to repeal Obamacare is furthered. Arts: Lead singer of Linkin Park, Chester Bennington is found dead in his Los Angeles home. August: News: “Unite the Right” rally’s took place in Charlottesville, Virginia. White supremacists paraded the streets with tiki torches. A man drove his car into a crowd of protesters, one person was killed, several were injured. Politics: President Trump places blame on both parties for the horror and hate that occurred in Charlottesville. More news: Hurricane Harvey heavily affected states on coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Efforts from the entire country are given to help those affected by this tragedy. More politics: Trump announces to bar Transgendered people from the US military and to cut funding to the sex assignment procedures for military personnel. Sports: Floyd Mayweather Defeats Conor Mcgregor in a knockout fight. September News: Fires start to burn their way across California, causing millions to evacuate. More news: Hurricane Irma raised to a category five storm, storm devastates Puerto Rico, Florida, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
high category Earthquakes. Technology: Apple announces the release of the Iphone X and Iphone 8. Law: Women in Saudi Arabia are able to obtain driving licenses- a huge step in the rights of Women in the Middle East. Politics: President Trump reciends, DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) People across the country fight to keep DACA valid. As the removal of it would cause people to return to countries they don’t know. October News: Largest modern mass shooting occurs in Las Vegas, Nevada with at least 59 people dead and hundreds injured. Arts: Author Kazuo Ishiguro wins Nobel Prize in Literature for his Novels, like “Never Let Me Go”. Celebrities: Tom Petty suffers Cardiac Arrest at age 66. More News: sexual assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein are reported with more than 13 women accusing him of assault. Disaster: California Wildfires continue to grow as more people evacuate. November News: Many more women come forward accusing men of Hollywood and doctors of sports teams sexualy assulting them, the people with accusations against them: Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Louis C.K., Donald Trump, Matt Lauer, Garrison Keillor, Ben Affleck, and
many more. More news: Australia approves same sex marriage. Attacks: A gunman opens fire in a Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas 26 deaths and multiple injuries reported. These are just a few of the major events that occurred over 2017, and therefore not all events are recorded in the article. 2017 was a year of tragedy as well as a year that brought many good things. We are looking forward to what 2018 has in store for us!
Christmas Christmas Around the World Siena Rohan 18’ With the holiday season right around the corner, we are all getting ready to set up our Christmas trees, look up the best baking recipes, and dust off our skis and snowboards. As we all prepare in our own way, we sometimes forget the rest of the word isn’t like us. For some of us, we have never experienced the traditions of other other countries and their holidays. However, today you will be able to have a taste of the culture from around the world. Coming from a Peruvian family, I have spent many Christmases sharing the traditional peruvian customs. Peru has different seasons, so Christmas takes place in the summer. Because of this, we usually head to the beach during Christmas and New Years. On Christmas Eve, the country gathers with their families around the Christmas tree. The adults drink together and everyone comes together to tell stories. At midnight, you can hear fireworks being set off, and after hugging and giving blessings to everyone, they stay up late passing around presents. On New Year's Eve, the country slips into their favorite hobbies- drinking and dancing. They stay up celebrating until early in the morning and spend the rest of the day sleeping. In Spain, the timing of events is a bit different. Christmas dinner is often served on Christmas Eve before service at Church. The usual meal is seafood or turkey stuffed with truffles.
Service is a midnight mass which is followed by celebrating in the streets with music and torches. A few days later on New Years, it is a tradition that says to eat twelve grapes during the twelves strokes of the clock at midnight. The twelve grapes represent the twelves months, each grape giving you luck for every month. Six days later is the Epiphany holiday celebrated on January 6th. It is a holiday to represent the three kings who came to Jesus. It is on that night where the Spanish give and receive presents. In Japan, Christmas isn’t seen as a religious holiday (due to its prevalent Buddhist and Shinto influences) and is instead seen as a time to spread happiness in the community as spending time with significant others. It is viewed similarly to Valentine's Day. To spread the cheer, it is custom to give and receive presents. One of Japan’s most popular and unique traditions is their Christmas dinner. This usually consists of Kentucky fried chicken and strawberry shortcake. Even with their differing religious belief, if you were to look around parts of Japan during this time, it would be filled with Christmas lights, trees, and snow. In contrast to the more modern trends of Japan, Iceland is full of old traditions. They call this time of year the Yule season. Though they share many of our traditions, instead of Santa, their presents are delivered by thirteen Christmas imps. People in Iceland usually spend Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with extended family. This is followed by Boxing day, another day of feasts, spent with close relatives and friends. During the New Year's celebrations, it is said magical things are to appear such as talking cows or seals taking the form of humans, as well as the dead coming back to life. During these magical happenings, the citizens around the country light bonfires and set of fireworks to “blow out the old year”. As the world begins to start the holiday season, remember each country’s traditions hold the same purpose despite their
differences. Chirstmas has been about opening our hearts and being grateful for the blessing we have been given throughout the year, regardless of race, religion, or ethnicity.
Christmas Traditions and their Origins Zoe Holland ‘20 Christmas is officially on the way! With Christmas comes many traditions that make the holiday special. These traditions have been around for such a long time there seems no reason to question why they’re even around. Well, hold onto your eggnog because we’re gonna take a look into many traditions that are celebrated every year. One of the most prominent traditions that you see in many homes, cards, and stores are Christmas trees. These trees originate all the way back from the 17th century in which the German Lutherans began this tradition. Then it spread to the United States in the 1820’s after the German Lutherans began immigrating into the country. When Christmas time comes around so do the Christmas themed Rom-Coms. With those Rom-Coms comes a whole lot of mistletoe. Mistletoe is a parasitic plant and according to Celtic legend it can bring good luck and ward off evil spirits. Kissing under mistletoe began in the Victorian era and was said to lead to marriage. Lets not forget everyone's favorite oversized socks - stockings! There is not really much fact to this tradition. From what it looks like it started in the “Night Before Christmas” poem. Another theory on where this originated from is that St. Nicholas dropped gold coins down a poor family's chimney and it landed it some socks hanging by the
fire. Either way, Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without stockings. Finally, the best way to spread the cheer of Christmas is by caroling from home to home. Caroling used to only be for church professionals in the 12th and 13th centuries. Slowly but surely in England's Victorian era many of the most popular caroling songs were written and caroling became popular. There are many more magical traditions but these seemed to be the most important for the holidays. Now you have many interesting conversation to talk about while enjoying your Christmas dinner.
Community & Lifestyle Finals
Alexis Tiryakioglu 20’
The word “finals” elicits the same level of terror to Smirls as the name Voldemort does to Hogwarts students. Since there is sadly no way to escape from finals, the best option is to make them as tolerable as possible. This article will cover all the basic logisticals about finals, as well as study tips and ways to destress before your exams.
Logistics and exam times For those who are unaware, final exams are on December 19-21, which is Tuesday through Thursday. The Monday before exams is a normal class day, and it is likely that there will be some type of review in class. Also, students are only required to be at school during the times they have exams. Once you have taken your last exam, you begin
Christmas break and don’t have to return to school until January 8th, 2018. The exam schedule is as follows: Tuesday, December 19th 8:30-10:00: French 1, Spanish 2 10:30-12:00: Spanish 1, French 2 1:00-3:00: Block C 1:00-2:00: Theological Studies 1 Wednesday, December 20th 8:30-10:30: Block A 1:00-3:00: Block B Thursday, December 21st 9:00-1:00: Block D How to study Although it seems like finals are far away, they will be here before you know it. It is much better to begin preparing early, instead of scrambling at the last minute. Please take into consideration that everyone learns and studies differently, but these are several methods that work well for myself as well as others. Quizlet: Quizlet is a website that allows you to make your own virtual flashcards, in addition to several other study tools that help you learn material. There are many ways in which you can study using Quizlet including: flashcards, spelling quizzes for terms, a learning stage (my personal favorite), practice tests, and even learning games. Also, Quizlet allows you to share your set with other users and collaborate while making the flashcards, which allows you to split up the work with a friend for mutual benefit. Make normal flashcards: If you learn better by writing things rather than typing them, traditional flash cards may be the way to go. In addition, these are portable, so you can study your terms on the go. Make a study guide: This is ideal, especially for material that needs
lengthier answers, which can be a little cumbersome on Quizlet. I advise making it on Google Docs for several reasons including: you can print as many copies as necessary, it can be easily shared with and edited by others in order to include more information, and it can be accessed anywhere with internet, on any device. Reread key information: Although it is a bit absurd to reread every book you read in class, or read your textbook over again, there are ways to review the material. For actual books, I would recommend reading an online summary, such as Spark Notes, or Shmoop in order to refresh your memory. If you took notes while reading a textbook, it would be wise to review those. If not, either read a summary if you can find one, either in the book or online, or review your class notes from that unit, as they likely cover similar topics. Ask for help: This is the most important of all, as you can’t study a topic well if you don’t understand it in the first place. If you are unsure about a particular topic, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Whether you ask a fellow classmate, or find time to review the topic with the teacher, it will pay off. The teachers as SMA are always super helpful, and willing to meet with students outside of class time, like in the morning or during an off period. How to destress A lot of studying is done for finals, and this can take a toll on you, and make you quite stressed. Although there is no way to totally alleviate the stress, it is possible to take some of the weight of one’s shoulders. Here are a few suggestions in order to lessen stress: -Take a warm bath or shower: Whether you are a shower or a bath person, taking a hot soak or shower can alleviate stress and calm you
down. If you enjoy taking baths, pop a bath bomb in the water and sip on some tea while letting yourself relax. I also enjoy reading a book in the bath, or propping my laptop up near the tub (but far enough away so it doesn’t fall in!) and watching a television show or movie on Netflix. -Listen to some music: Listening to soft, melodic music can help lessen stress and focus you back on your task. However, if listening to rap music or another genre is an outlet for you, by all means listen to what makes you happy. I personally enjoy listening to holiday music, especially since it gets me even more excited for Christmas break. -Bake something: There are few things as cozy and welcoming as the smell of freshly baked cookies. It doesn’t matter if you bake a treat from scratch, or buy boxed mix, the effect is still the same. -Go outside: Depending on the weather, it may help to take a nice walk through your neighborhood (bonus points if you bring your dog along with you!). If it is snowing, go outside and build a snowman, and forget about your studies for a few minutes. -SLEEP: Possibly the most important thing of all, is sleep. While it might seem necessary to stay up just a few more minutes, very few things are as valuable as sleep. Reminders! -Don’t procrastinate! Last year, I procrastinated studying until the weekend before finals and I was swamped with work. Please take this advice and start studying early in order to alleviate stress from your future self.
-Find a method of studying that works for you. Make sure that you are using your time effectively, and not wasting time using a method that isn’t allowing you to learn anything. -Make sure you have a ride to and from finals. It doesn’t matter if your parents or a carpool drives you, or even if you take the bus, just make sure you are at school around 20-30 minutes before your exam begins. -SLEEP the night before! Try and get at least 7 hours of sleep, although more is preferable. If you stay up too late cramming, it will be more difficult for you to recall information. -Eat before your exam. Before the exam, eat a healthy breakfast or lunch in order to fuel you through the exam. In addition, it is really hard to focus when you are hungry, which is the last thing you need while taking a test. -Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Although finals may seem like the end of the world, it is important to remember that it is only a test, and you will get through it. Even though it is important to do well on these tests, it is not the most important thing you will do in your life. Good luck on all your finals!
Highlight:: World Visions
Clara Schroepfer ‘20
Of the many courses St. Mary’s Academy offers its High School students, World Visions is particularly unique. For Freshmen who have never taken the course, World Visions is a mandatory course taken during one semester of Sophomore year which combines World History, World Literature, and World Religions for a three-hour
period. Encompassing all of A and B blocks, this fast-paced and intuitive class teaches a deeper understanding of human nature and existence.
“I have really enjoyed World Visions, and have broadened my knowledge of the world.” Anonymous Mr. Blair is the first of the trifecta of teachers who tackle the broad subject of World Visions. If you thought it impossible to cover 4.5 billion years of world history in three or four months, think again. Instead of a slow-moving, mind-numbing course that focuses too closely on irrelevant historical figures and events (admit it- history class has bored you from time to time), World History focuses on only the most important of topics. Class discussion further uncovers how relevant history is today, as well as how interconnected history actually is, no matter what region or country you’re learning about. Mr. Blair’s particular favorites are discussions of philosophy, morality, and ethics- why are we here? What is right or wrong? Do we actually exist? Is the world around us an illusion? I know, your brain probably hurts just reading those questions, but Mr. Blair has a knack for challenging students to think independently and philosophically. It’s another reason why this class is so unique- how often do you walk into a high school classroom to find students debating the purpose of humankind?
“World Visions makes me question my existence.” Chloe Knitt, ‘20. The second segment of World Visions is, World Literature, taught by Mrs. Harnar. As a discussion-based class, students make sense of literature through
verbal analysis and discussion. The texts read during the course are truly diverseGilgamesh, Greek Mythology, and The Merchant of Venice might be from vastly different time periods and regions, but they have more in common than you think. That’s the beauty of this class; patterns in literary themes throughout history show just how interconnected the world is. Most Sophomores joke about the never ending discussions of death and dying, but it really is fascinating to juxtapose people and places throughout history. Mrs. Harnar’s chosen texts also correlate to the time periods and nations studied in World History, allowing students to bring background knowledge and further understanding to each class. It is not uncommon for a student to suddenly bring up the other class’s materials in the middle of a discussion. The two classes are cleverly interwoven to help students succeed in each individual class through understanding of the other.
“World Visions has helped me understand the different cultures and people around the world in a new way. This class forced me to look at everything I know at a different angle. Overall, this class helped understand the world around me!” - Adeline Harrington, ‘20. With third and final class, World Religions, Mrs. Horning wraps everything else up with a neat little bow. Though it is commonly considered the most difficult of the classes due to the seemingly unpronounceable vocab terms and the challenging nature of the tests, it allows a deeper understanding of religions other than Christianity, which surrounds most students’ everyday lives. Mrs. Horning uses stories to assist students in grasping difficult religious concepts. With the tumultuous state the world is in today, it is more important than ever that we begin to find understanding of others’
perspectives. It’s no secret that the majority of historical events have some sort of connection to religion. History is only truly understood when the perspective of all sides is brought into consideration. That’s why it’s so incredible that St. Mary’s students have the opportunity to delve into a deeper, objective understanding of religion.
“I’ve never had a class like World Visions. Who would have thought that our classes are so interconnected?” - Anonymous World Visions is a course that shapes High School students into global citizens, eager to see the world and understand its people. It is eye-opening, interesting, and enjoyable, which makes World Visions a staple of SMA culture.
The 2017 State Elections
Lizzie Cave 21’
On November 7th, elections were held for various governmental positions candidates ran for governor, attorney general, and various other positions in legislature. The races led to a number of new faces in government around the country. In Utah, they held an election for the representative of the Third Congressional District, which had been a role left vacant for quite some time. It had been empty due to the previous representative, Jason Chaffetz, resigning in order to become a commentator on a popular news program. The winning candidate was John Curtis. The man had previously been the mayor of Provo, one of the largest cities in Utah. He had held that role for almost 10 years before announcing his plans to run for representative. In New Jersey, there were two likely candidates- Phillip D. Murphy, a democrat who was previously a Wall Street Banker, and Kim Guadagno, Lieutenant Governor and the second-in-command to former governor Chris Christie. Each focused on different issues- Guadagno made reducing property tax a feature
of her campaign, while Murphy spoke on a $15 minimum wage and stricter gun laws. Murphy won, and became governor of New Jersey. In Virginia, there were a couple important elections- the first was for governor. The role was won by the Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam, though Ed Gillespie had also been in the running. The second election was for Lieutenant Governor, in which the democrat Justin Fairfax and the republican Jill Vogel both ran. Fairfax won. As well, the state of Virginia voted for attorney general, and positions in state legislature. In Maine, the vote led to an expanded access to Medicaid, under the Affordable Care Act. Maine was the first state of the 50 to settle the issue via referendum. This marked an important turn in the state’s thinking, as it was one of the 19 states whose republican governing bodies have refused to expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Some of those doubtful states, such as Utah and Idaho, are closing watching the results. Newly formed committees in both of those states are working so that Medicaid expansion is a question on 2018’s ballot- the outcome of Maine’s choice will likely offer clues about the issue and it’s involvement in next year’s congressional elections. In conclusion, the 2017 state election was a marked victory for all, and lead to plenty of new faces, and likely new ideas, in the governments of many states. Everyone is hopeful that the latest officials’ terms will go smoothly for all involved.
About the Staff
Editors in Chief: Rachel Most 18’ Hannah Siegel 19’ Editors: Drew Johnson 18’ Meaghan Miner 18’ Maddie Sanders 18’ Charlotte Dean ‘18 Staff Writers: Siena Rohan 18’ Clara Schoepfer ‘20 Lizzie Cave 20’ Alexis Tiryakioglu 20’ Zoe Holland 20’
Published on Dec 15, 2017