Page 1

TheLittleHawk Iowa City High School - Iowa City, Iowa - Volume 71, Issue 2 - November 13, 2013 -

The AP Achievement Gap

School administration has acknowledged and is working to address the underrepresentation of minority students in AP classes. The solution will likely require changes at both the school and district level. By Ellen Carman & Edgar Thornton

Jenny Flores’s mom didn’t know what an Advanced Placement (AP) class was until her daughter decided to take two her senior year. Flores is the only Hispanic student in her section of AP Statistics and AP Psychology but decided to take the classes to prepare for college. “I used to think that average was good enough, but now I’m thinking I should go beyond what I thought I could do,” Flores ‘14 said. “My mom is proud of me. I think it’s something I can do, to do better than my parents are doing right now. I don’t think they are satisfied with what they are doing right now.” Flores is the exception to a trend of minority student underrepresentation in AP classes at City High. The school is offering 20 AP classes this year. Advanced Placement classes offer college-level curriculum to students. If a student earns a qualifying score on an AP exam – typically a 4 or 5 score out of 5 – they may receive college credit. AP classes are also commonly used as a tool to rank high schools. In Newsweek magazine’s “America’s Best High Schools” rankings, AP tests taken per student accounts for 25 percent of a school’s score, and average AP scores account for 10 percent. Addditionally, percent of students enrolled in at least one AP class contributes five percent to the ranking score. In the 2013 ranking, City High is 997. In AP offerings at City High overall, minorities have far less representation than in the general population of the school. School administration has acknowledged this and knows that more could be done to encourage minority and low-income participation in these classes. “I think we probably need to set some goals and be more aggressive, to have our statistics be more reflective of our student body,” Principal John Bacon said. “We have to target our efforts better.” Bacon emphasized that encouraging students to try an AP class can improve not only the individual student’s learning but the academic achievement of the school as a whole. Kiera Washpun ‘14 has never taken an AP class and does not plan on doing so. “No one has ever pushed me to take an AP class,” Washpun said. “I wouldn’t think to myself, ‘Oh, I should take an AP class.’” One way Bacon thinks that the school can raise numbers of students in AP classes is by working with teachers of freshman classes to find, prepare and encourage students who may be successful in higher-level classes. “The school focuses more on lower achieving kids than the higher achieving ones,” Omar

Shaban ‘14 said. “I mean that they try to help lower kids catch up to the middle. But they aren’t helping middle kids get to the top.” Shaban has taken seven AP classes in the past four years. Of the factors that could prevent minority students from taking advantage of AP classes at City, socio-economic status is likely to play a key role. According to Professor David Bill, a professor of sociology and Associate Dean at the College of Education at the University of Iowa, the achievement gap between minority and majority students has narrowed in recent history. However, the socioeconomic gap has widened. “Part of what you’re seeing when you see a racial or ethnic gap is really a class gap, because for the most part minority kids are still more likely to be from lower-income homes than majority kids.” Bills said. The achievement gap is not only related to race. “One thing I find really interesting is when people say an achievement divide, they often think just solely of racial achievement, but it is not,” said Ryan Wise, Deputy Director of the Iowa Department of Education. “Once you factor in English Language Learners (ELL), students with disabilities, and socio-economic status, the achievement divide largely disappears” In fact, the new ICCSD diversity policy defines minority students as those receiving free or reduced price lunches. It does not mention race. This year City has added four new AP class offerings in an effort to get students to challenge themselves in a subject area where they have an interest. One indication of positive progress is the new AP Language and Composition class, in which minority representation is comparable to the school’s minority populations. “Maybe people don’t see the relevance of AP English, or they are not going to be studying Literature in college, therefore, why would they take an AP class in it?” Robyn Fields, AP Language & Composition teacher said. “Whereas in AP language most of what we do is going to get kids ready for college. It’s reading non-fiction and writing in a style that they would use in college.” However, simply adding more AP classes seems unlikely to solve the underlying problem. Bills says that parents who have been to college themselves have a better idea of how schools are set up. They are also better prepared to navigate their children through course selections. “Parents who already have advantages see more AP offerings as a way to secure a little more advantage,” Bills said. “It’s not that anybody is deliberately keeping kids down, but in the process of trying to maximize the chances for their own kids it just sort of widens the gap a little bit more.” *Continued on A3


CHS Student Body ‘13-’14

African American - 18%

Asian - 3.9% Caucasian - 66.7%

Hispanic- 10.9 % Other - 0.5%

CHS AP Enrollment ‘13-’14

African American - 4.5%

Asian - 3.9% Caucasian - 87.2%

Hispanic- 4.4% Other - 0.2%

Iowa AP Tests 2013

African American - 3.1%

Asian - 7.7% Caucasian - 80.3%

Hispanic- 4.17% Other - 4.4%

Info. provided by the CHS Guidance Dept. and College Board. CHS AP Enrollment is an avg. of the % of students in each class.

SMART Board placement nears completion By Jacob Buatti

As more and more SMART Boards are added to City High, some people can’t help but argue against the expensive use of money. Students don’t see how they are more helpful than a less expensive route, like the document camera, Elmo. In fact, most classrooms are equipped with both a SMART Board and document camera. Students are questioning why there is the same technology in classrooms K-12. By the end of the school year, there will be more than 70 SMART Boards at City High alone. Mean-

ing that 83% of classrooms will have a SMART Board. The Addition of SMART Boards first began in August of 2007 with the Iowa School Microsoft settlement that granted City High $308,000. City High used the money to update software and purchase more than 30 SMART Boards. Shortly after this, the Iowa City School District Foundation started a $1.5 million technology fundraiser that supplied almost 300 SMART Boards, 425 document cameras, and 221 projectors. The arguments and unrest of high school students is caused by the universal treatment by the school district. Students disagree with technology

being the same in classrooms K-12. “I think that the rush to get the newest technology up is not as thought out as it should be,” Doug Lestina, Dean of Students said. “It should be more about what teachers want.” For many elementary schools, the coming of technology is an improvement. The new additions have proven to make younger students more focused in class. The interactive boards are having a visible and positive influence. SMART Boards work better with younger students because there are more interactive capabilities with younger and less advanced studies. “Elementary students want to use SMART

Boards. They pay attention so they can have a turn using it. They’re excited to learn,” said Susan Brennan, the Development Director for the Iowa City School District Foundation. For high school students, the addition isn’t having the same effect as elementary schools. “For me, it hasn’t enhanced school. I don’t care about SMART Boards. I think it’s taking money away from other areas of the school district that need it more,” Elijah Jones 14’ said. In addition, some high school students see the SMART Boards as a negative influence on learning. They think that the new technology wastes class time and distracts students.


NOVEMBER 13, 2013

Section A

The Little Hawk Feature Magazine

5 NEWS: ICCSD Facilities Plan By Claire Noack & Neil Harte

The Little Hawk investigates how the rising popularity of violence in TV and video games affects teenage behavior

Profile: Kole Butler


By Anton Buri

NEWS: A Violent Culture

A&E: AP Studio Art

Kole Butler is a senior with a passion for electronic beats. He’s increasingly popular online, where he uploads his music. Read about his struggles and his future plans.

ON THE COVER: Synthetic Marajuana By Payton Evans & Becca Meyer

3 The ICCSD School board lays out the new 10 year facilities plan.

The LH investigates high schooler use of synthetic marijuana, a dangerous chemical compound that has proved a challenge for lawmakers.

NEWS: Blood Drive By Payton Evans

Interact hosted their annual blood drive on November 7, 2013 in The Commons.

Section B



By Dominic Balestrieri-Fox A loss in the second round of the ISHAA state playoffs, ended City’s 8-3 season.

Bringing School Home: Three Students’ Reflections By Hailey Verdick Families discuss the advantages of homeschooling and confront the stereotypes about their unusual system.

From your editors... Jacob Potash & Ellen Carman At the center of every good story is a conflict. We are surrounded by conflicts, big and small: student vs. test, school vs. school, drug vs. community, stereotype vs. reality, and so on. But what about conflicts that are ongoing, inspire a strong emotional reaction, or

have legal implications? Conflicts where the truth is unclear and the stakes are high? Can you write good stories about them? There’s a name for this kind of conflict: controversy. We think good stories can certainly be written about them, and sometimes must be written about them. Often, the hardest thing to talk about is the most important to talk about. This issue, we have decided to take on topics that required sensitive and even anonymous conversations. From the underrepresentation of minority students in AP classes, to dangerous student use of synthetic marijuana and steroids, we decided to take on the controversies that we believe students at City ought to be paying attention to. Covering controversy is a tough balancing act. The text, the layout, and every detail of the design has to 1) illuminate the story at hand, and 2) avoid sensationalizing the

subject matter or introducing opinion. Does our magazine cover trivialize the dangers of synthetic marijuana use? Does our lead news story strike an accusatory tone? We hope not. The editorial arguments have been had, the compromises have been reached, and the final product you’re holding in your hands tries to tell stories that are both compelling and true. We hope we’ve presented each topic with an appropriate degree of seriousness, and that students will do the same. We hope you’ll be able to approach these issues better-informed in the future, and that you’ll take action in your school or wider community if you decide you need to. We know that as a monthly publication, we’re not your best source of breaking news. You can check the Press Citizen’s website to find out who was elected to the city council or get race results immediately on Twitter. Our advantage, though, is that we have

a month to go behind the story – a month to thoroughly investigate the dynamics behind the headline and the people behind the controversy. And thanks to understanding school administrators, we aren’t under pressure to avoid certain topics or sell a certain number of copies. We’ve poured over statistics, agonized over design, and badgered each other to finish stories on time – for a month. Now it’s your turn. Get mad, find our errors, ask questions. Whatever you do, learn something!

Ellen Carman


tas o P b Jaco

The Little Hawk

NEWS Interact hosts annual blood drive

Students give blood on November, 7, 2013 in the Commons. . CORA BERN-KLUG/ THE LITTLE HAWK

By Payton Evans

On Thursday November 7th, Interact Club’s tri-annual blood drive through the University of Iowa took place at City High. Many students and teachers took time out of their days to gather in the commons and donate blood. “We have no goals aside from helping people that need healthy blood,” Emma Greimann ‘14, co- president of Interact said. “They tell you that they save three lives with

each donation, which is pretty incredible.” Many students took up the opportunity to help out as well. “It looked fun,” Katelyn Campbell ‘15 said when asked why she decided to give blood. “I knew I’d be helping people so I thought, ‘Why not!’” The University of Iowa goes around to local high school campuses and the University campus to sponsor blood drives throughout the year. “Blood is good for 42 days,” University of Iowa medical profession Kathryn Ties

said. “We need a constant supply to keep the shelves filled with what’s needed.” Anyone 17 or older, or 16 with a signed parental permission slip, can donate blood as long as any medication they are on is acceptable and they have no major health problems. Health screenings take place during every blood drive to make sure every donor meets these requirements. “I think it’s important to give blood,” Omnia Ali ‘15 said. “Some people need blood and I have extra to give away, so I’m going to donate.”

Botchway wins seat on council By Jacob Potash

Only four percentage points separated the top three finishers in last Tuesday’s city council race, but those small margins hid the stark choice that faced Iowa City voters. In the final tally, Johnson County Deputy Auditor of Elections, Kingsley Botchway, edged out business-owner Catherine Champion, while Susan Mims retained her seat. Eli Shepherd ‘14 was happy to hear the news of Botchway’s victory. Shepherd volunteered for Botchway’s campaign, canvassing potential voters, and praised the recent law school graduate’s approach to governing. “I think the vision is just being more available to the community,” Shepherd said. “Being more of an advocate for everyone in the community, rather than being an advocate for businesses.” Botchway – who will be the second person of color now holding elected office in the county – vis-

ited multiple State and Local Government classes at Shepherd credited the candidates with generCity High during his campaign, and discussed with ating a high turnout, at 22%. Vice Principal Scott students how bike lanes and public transportation Jespersen commented on the significance of the could be changed to improve their commute to turnout. school. “I just think it’s important that people underM i m s stand their roles as citijoined the zens – it’s democracy, it’s council in 2010 the good of the many,” and serves as he said. “The vision is to be an advoMayor Pro Jespersen, a former Tem. Of the social studies teacher, cate for everyone in the comfour candidates, expressed his hopes for munity ranther than being an she was the lead the council’s future. advocate for businesses.” v o t e - g e t t e r. “I hope whoever’s Trailing Mims, on the city council Botchway and makes educated deci-Eli Shepherd‘14 Champion was sions that are the best Rockne Cole, a for their constituents,” lawyer who ran he said. “I know that on a progressive sounds cliché, but I’m a platform of sustainability and cooperative entrepre- social studies teacher and, unfortunately, I actually neurship. believe in that stuff!”

A3 *AP continued from A1 For example, Shaban says that his parents are the ones who pushed him and told him to challenge himself. “I have to get good grades,” he said. “They push me to do better and they are the reason that I take more challenging classes. I feel like I wouldn’t push myself as hard if I didn’t want to, but they are helping me out.” That parental support can play a key role in student success. “Some of it depends on how much support [students] are getting at home,” said Fields. “There are so many factors that make it challenging.” Some parents do not put push their kids to succeed academically because they do not have enough information about the curriculum the school offers. Bills doesn’t believe that this has anything to do with how much a parent cares about their child. He points to issues like parents who may have to work long or alternative shifts, or have many kids to take care of, as part of the reason it is hard for the school to reach parents. The school offers a PSTO meeting about registration, and there is a parent meeting for parents of freshmen to learn about curriculum each year before school begins. Other factors that play a role in which classes a student signs up for include their peer group. Ty Williams ’14, took AP Government last year. She said that only one of her friends was also in any AP classes. “They don’t want to seem too smart, because their friends will bully them because they are in AP classes,” Williams said. “People will make fun of me about it, but at the end of the day it’s about me getting into college.” Flores believes that people she knows also opt out of AP for superficial reasons. “Some people think we are stereotyped so they don’t take the class. They think well ‘Hey, they think I’m dumb, might as well play dumb,” Flores said. “That’s something that I don’t think is a good idea. I try not to play dumb.” School and district administration believe that this negative culture can be reversed. “The school certainly has a role and obligation to nurture that culture of interest in education and higher education, and parents do too,” Ross Wilburn, ICCSD Equity Director, said. The idea is that having someone to help students take a risk can help them succeed. “To be the first to break down certain barriers, to take a risk, take a chance – yeah, that can be hard,” Bacon said. “That’s why I think it helps when you have someone who shows you, ‘Hey, I believe in you. I’m reaching out to you.’” Making sure that students are excited about their education needs to start before high school. If that happens, then Wilburn believes that students may be more likely to challenge themselves in high school. “If schools, parents and students themselves wait to get involved or build that interest until high school then it would be a huge challenge,” Wilburn said. “We need to build the foundation earlier so there is a greater opportunity for it to happen in high school.” However, Bacon isn’t about to hand off the challenge to families, elementary school staff, or the district. He thinks that by setting goals and beginning a discussion amongst City staff and students, change can be made. “I need to play a more active role in addressing this at the systemic level,” Bacon said. He also plans on taking steps within City to increase diversity in all classes. “I am going to take this data and put it in the hands of the entire faculty and say that seeking to increase the minority population of students taking AP classes should be a goal in every single one of these classes,” Bacon said. “I think in many cases reaching out to students and showing them that we believe in them can help break down that barrier and get some pioneers to come in and take their first AP class. Maybe that will lead to taking more.” For Flores the experience of being in AP classes has inspired her to play a role in her younger siblings’ education. “They are smart,” she said. “Hopefully, I can help them go beyond what they know and make them be better.”


HyperStream prepares students for tech careers By Schuyler Libe Tech careers are on the rise, and students are seeking ways to get the education they need to have a successful future in technology. HyperStream, a technology career awareness program has been developed at City High to support developing Iowa’s future technology workforce. “City High is one of 100+ schools that has our program,” Tamara Kenworthy, the HyperStream Program Director said. “The club has been with us for several years and is doing great.” Launched statewide in September of 2008, the Technology Association of Iowa Educational Foundation member companies and their employees are the driving force in persuading Iowa 6th–12th grade students to engage themselves in postsecondary technology education to prepare for Iowa tech careers. Through an effective partnership between education and business, Ambassador companies work directly with teachers and students by mentoring, starting HyperStream clubs and supporting hands-on projects. Ambassadors directly develop future technology leaders and contribute to the community. “Technology companies just can’t hire enough qualified workers,” Kenworthy said. “There are great jobs in Iowa – high-paying jobs right out of college – but they’re going unfilled. We need to get more young people excited about exploring these career tracks. We want to help them in their exploration through our HyperStream program. If we don’t get more kids going down this path, companies will have to outsource more and potentially move out of Iowa.” There are several benefits for students who are involved with HyperStream such as seeing what life is

ABOVE: Students work to create a robot in HyperStream club. RIGHT: Tobias Golz ‘16 shows off his work. SCHUYLER LIBE/ THELITTLEHAWK

really like in the world of technology with job shadowing and internships. HyperStream shows students how technology will play a major role in whatever they decide to pursue later on in life from environmental issues to fashion design to Web development. Whether it’s a two-year, fouryear or master’s program, a tech degree from a school in Iowa prepares you for future success. It’s not only beneficial to the students, but to the Ambassadors as well. When students’ minds are opened

up to a whole new vista of opportunities by educating, mentoring and empowering, they can start being groomed to be future tech employees. “We are currently in over 100 communities in Iowa. We’re excited to have an active HyperStream Club at Iowa City High School sponsored by Mrs. Vicky Pedersen and mentored by Integrated DNA Technologies.” PERSON SAID. Integrated DNA Technologies is a large company that manufactures DNA that is shipped all around the

globe. “HyperStream is the Tech Hub for Iowa’s students,” Kenworthy said of the program “With the goal of fostering real-world technology learning through hands-on projects, competitions and engaging presentations — all with professional technology mentoring. We pair schools with technology professionals to learn about technology in action-packed clubs. Students work in the areas of Multimedia, Game Design (programming), Robotics, and Cyber Defense.”

Alum speeds from City to Silicon Valley 2010 City High graduate Bjorn Hovland has temporarily left St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota to work in technology in Silicon Valley. ByWill Barker In three short years Bjorn Hovland ‘10 went from the hallways of City High to a groovy office in Silicon Valley. The City High alum was involved in orchestra, choir, and drama in high school. “Bjorn was a good leader and an honest person. He was not afraid to tell it like he saw it and other kids sometimes thought it was mean, but I felt his criticism was usually on track,” said Mr. Lestina. “When he was here he was very much into music and theatre, but I also know he had some abilities in other areas as well.” These other abilities, combined with his musical interest, lead Hovland to Saint Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota. At the end of his

junior year with a double major in “After he was done speaking, I economics and mathematics and a asked a bunch of questions and minor in statistics, Hovland attend- gave him my resume,” Hovland said. ed a speech by a Saint Olaf alumnus. “About two weeks later he emailed The Saint Olaf me asking grad had been if I wanted working in to come Silicon Valwork for “I knew within a week ley, an area of him for of working here that northern Calthe sumifornia which mer. So, a this was the sort of is home to few weeks thing I want to do for many large after that I and small drove out the rest of my life.” technology to Calicompanies fornia and such as Facehave been -Bjorn Hovland‘10 book and here ever Google. Since since.” Hovland had Hovland planned to started move to California after graduation work at a small startup company and work in the technology indus- called Leeo. The days are long and try, he attended the speech. the work is hard, but Hovland is

right where he wants to be. “I knew within a week of working here that this was the sort of thing I want to do for the rest of my life,” said Hovland. With less than ten employees the company is still in “stealth mode”. This means that details about what the company is working on are still secret. All Hovland was able to say was that the company is building consumer electronics which will be launched soon. Hovland said that he plans to go back to Saint Olaf and finish his last semester in a year or two, but that there is no hurry. “I would like to stay here for as long as possible. It’s so much fun” said Hovland. “I have never had a job where I have wanted to jump up every day and be excited to get to work, I have that now.”

NOVEMBER 13, 2013

Thornton to spend six month in Liberia By Nathan Goodman Senior year is the year to be at the top of the school, the last year there is to make a mark on City High. Unless you are moving to Liberia. “I’m definitely sad about cutting out of senior year early,” Edgar Thornton IV 13’ said. “I want to finish high school with my friends and everyone else. On the other hand, this is an opportunity I’m not willing to sacrifice. How often in my life am I going to have a chance to just pack up everything and go, especially to a place as diverse and with so much unique history as Liberia?” Thornton’s father, Edgar Thornton III, is a Project Development Officer of the US Agency for International Development (USAID). He will be looking at the programs the US has in Liberia, such as Power Africa, which aims to double power access in Sub-Saharan Africa. Thornton III will be deciding which ones should be funded. Starting one third of the way through his senior year, Thornton will be in Africa for six months. “I will be back in the US this May so I can graduate with my class and take my AP tests.” Thornton said. Liberia was created in 1822 as a place to put freed slaves from America. It was originally a Republic, but periods of war and governmental reform brought authoritarian influences into its history. A civil war ended in 2003, and peace has followed since. “There are always security issues, especially for a US citizen living and travelling abroad,” Thornton said, “From pickpockets, to corrupt police officers, to terrorists, to kidnapping.” As there is no international 12th grade program in Liberia, Thornton will be taking his classes online through the Iowa Learning Online Program and George Washington University. “It will be a nice change not to have to wake up every morning to have to go to school.” Thornton said. Even though he will not have to wake up as early or deal with the drama there is in high school, there are a lot of social differences to get used to, especially since Thornton is not going to a regular high school. “In Liberia I’m going to have very few opportunities to interact with youth my age,” Thornton said. There will also be cultural differences for him to adjust to, such as the language in Liberia, which is essentially a dialect of English with bad grammar that uses a lot of slang. The general culture of Liberia is different from that of the US as well. “[It will be difficult to adjust to] living in a third world country in general and seeing lots of poverty and injustice.” Thornton said. Despite the possible challenges ahead, Thornton is excited to experience this trip. “[I’m excited to be] immersed in a different culture to see what it’s like, to be someplace different since I’ve lived in Iowa my whole life.” Thornton said.

NOVEMBER 13, 2013



ICCSD unveils 10 year facilities plan The school board reveals their solution to the overcrowding in the district’s many schools. Their plan includes renovations to current buildings and the construction of four new schools.



Construction: Fall 2014 - Summer 2017 1500 student capacity


Construction: Spring 2018 - Summer 2019 500 student capacity

EAST ELEM. SCHOOL Construction: Spring 2016 - Summer 2017 500 student capacity

SOUTH ELEM. SCHOOL Construction: Spring 2014 - Summer 2015 500 student capacity


By Claire Noack & Neil Harte For years, the Iowa City Community School District has been grappling with how to deal with the issue of a rapidly growing student population. Now they have a plan that, if approved, that will result in four additional schools, including a new high school in North Liberty slated to open in 2017. Consideration of the Facilities Master Plan, as it is called, began in September of 2012 with the goal of improving the current buildings in the district and increasing the capacity of the district to accommodate the steady increase of students in the area. Over the past decade, student enrollment in Iowa City has increased nearly 20 percent. “We are fortunate to be a growing school district, but that also comes with some challenges,” School Board President Sally Hoelscher said. “Hopefully, we can get caught up with our facility needs so that we can begin acting proactively instead of reactively.” The plan has a budget of 252 million dollars to be spent over the course of ten years to renovate existing schools in the district as they build four new facilities, including a new high school located north of Coralville, where residential growth has been greatest. This new high school would do much to ease congestion in area schools by absorbing the new influx of population in North Liberty,

which, since 2000, has skyrocketed from 5,000 people to over 13,000. The cornerstone of this plan is a new high school on North Dubuque Street aimed at evenly leveling out the student numbers throughout the district. “It’s one of the biggest deals we’ve had in our community in a long time,” City High Principal John Bacon said. “It changes the complexion of the school system.” The intent of the Board is to balance attendance at 1500 in each high school. Currently, the total enrollment at the high school level projected for 2022-23 is 4,586. However, with these current projections the existing high schools would not have the ability to handle numbers that high. “Both City High School and West High School are currently operating over capacity,” Hoelscher said. “The addition of a new high school will allow the district to accommodate current students as well as provide capacity for future growth.” Although both City and West will feel the effects to some degree by the ever-growing number of enrolled students in the near future, only one will see a major change due to the addition of a third high school. Already hundredes of students above capacity, West High’s population of 2000 looks to continue rising as more families arrive in the area each year. The new North High School, as it is being called by the Board, will help to ease the overcrowding at West. “I don’t anticipate losing a significant number, if any, students to the new school,” Bacon said. “With West High, it will happen.”

City High

Tate High

West High

North Central Jr. High

Northwest Jr. High

South East Jr. High

Borlaug Elem.

Central Elem.

Garner Elem.

Hills Elem.

Hoover Elem.

Horn Elem.

Kirkwood Elem.

Lemme Elem.

Lincoln Elem.

Longfellow Elem.

Lucas Elem.

Mann Elem.

Penn Elem.

Shimek Elem.

Twain Elem.

Weber Elem.

Wood Elem.

Van Allen Elem.

The construction on the new high school will begin next fall, and should take four years to complete in order to welcome students transferring for the 2017-2018 school year. In addition to building a new high school, the plan also calls for the construction of three new elementary schools. After several months of discussion, the land for the three new elementary schools was purchased in July and August. “We knew we wanted an elementary school on the east side and an elementary school on the south side and an elementary and high school in the north area,” Hoelscher said. “I think the administration did a good job of finding [the sites] given the land that’s available.” One final piece of the Facilities Master Plan includes renovations or additions to all of the current district buildings. A draft has been decided with an order of renovations that tries to place schools with the greatest urgency at the top of the list. “The district administration went in and evaluated each school based on need,” Chris Lynch, ICCSD Board member said. “But you will see a couple of easier schools going first. Why? Because they’re easy, and you need to balance the workload.” The planned order also takes into account the ability to fund projects, as well as maintaining equity in all the geographic areas of the district. “One of the hardest parts of a ten year facilities plan is that someone has to go first and someone has to go last,” Hoelscher said. “But I

think it’s important to keep the big picture in mind and remember that over the course of ten years, every building will be affected.” One such school is Longfellow Elementary. The current draft has Longfellow’s 15- to 18month renovation slated for a start time in 2017. Six classrooms and a gymnasium will be added to the school, as well as much needed improvements such as air conditioning to the existing building. “I think this will have a very positive effect on the Longfellow community.” Chris Pisarik, Longfellow principal, said. “We will have a facility that allows us better educational opportunities, and that’s a win-win for all involved.” A former student of Longfellow Olivia Hubbard ‘16, agrees that the renovations will benefit the school. “We had a lot of overcrowding, I remember,” she said. “If they’re building new classrooms then that’s a good thing.” However, it is important to remember that the current phasing plan is a draft. The district administrators are able to make changes based on the concerns and questions of the School Board, and it is likely that changes will be made. A new draft of the plan will be voted on at the School Board meeting on November 12th. “I don’t think that if we approve it is the main thing, I would be careful about moving too fast.” Lynch said. “Obviously we need to get a move on it, but the community needs a chance to have input in the process.” Check for future updates and changes to the Facilities Master Plan


NOVEMBER 13, 2013

City Alumni commit lives to service After graduating from City High, students go separate ways and choose what field they want to work in. These four students chose to give their time to protect our country. Joining the marines, the National Guard and the Silent Service, they tell their stories of how they have been affected, what lessons they have learned and give advice to students wanting to follow in their steps. By Leah Hoelscher

preciate it without experiencing the sacrifice it requires to maintain.” Rew said. Thinking it to be selfless and noble to enlist, Rew has felt like he needed to join since he was a child. Many of his friends had joined, and one of his City High friends was killed early on in the war in Iraq. Over the past four years, Rew has been a combat medic in the Iowa Army National Guard, a member of an infantry platoon, and a flight medic. Rew has searched cars for drugs and weapons, flown medevac coverage in the back of a helicopter, and done countless foot patrols. Not being able to disclose where he was stationed, or what he had been doing made communication with family limited. “You meet people from all over the world that are trying to make an opportunity for themselves. You get to work with people from differing socioeconomic classes, backgrounds, core beliefs and religions all come together to do their jobs together in order to succeed,” Rew said. “We were all strong because of each other and that’s what you focus on.” Rew strongly encourages others to consider joining the military, and help protect the comforts that we have, saying it can change your life. “You have to do it because it is something you want to do to better yourself and help your nation. You will come out of the military stronger both mentally and physically. It will force you to mature and learn how to work in a team with others. It absolutely can be the opportunity of a lifetime.” Rew said. Rew is still serving as a flight medic, while again a student at UNI working towards achieving his Masters in Biology. “The Army and the experiences it has held for me are definitely a major part of who I am now. I really took for granted everything that I had as a citizen of the U.S. We have everything at our fingertips and are comfortable all the time, I feel that I appreciate the opportunities and comforts of home so much more now.” Rew said.

Watching fellow soldiers die, long nights with little rest, and doing the dirty work with little sympathy and understanding. Risking every day comforts and their lives, former City High students have learned what it is like to serve our country. “It made you appreciate everything more, from your family, to a hot shower, to a warm bed, to getting to choose what you eat. When you come home and other people don't, you learn to appreciate the simple fact that you're alive.” Luke Huisenga, ‘99 said. ***

Collin Raaz ‘04

Passing three mile fitness tests, hiking through jungles, and climbing with packs over mountains were no challenge for varsity cross country competitor and Iowa City native Collin Raaz ‘04. Not being able to spend free time with friends and family was a more difficult adjustment. Going into the Marines may have been a large change in the life of Raaz, who served two tours with Operation Enduring Freedom and was a member of the Marines for four years, but the transition was smoothed over with training, team building, and letters from home. “I'd say the best part of any deployment is mail day. Depending on where you are it might take a couple months, but they fly your mail out in these huge bags the size of a small car, and it's like Christmas morning. You have to dig through them to find the boxes your friends and family sent and you get junk food, new books and magazines and most importantly, new socks.” Raaz said. After studying engineering and architecture at Iowa State for two years, Raaz dropped out and enlisted in the Marines in 2007. He started as a basic infantryman, and finished as a Scout Sniper team leader up until an IED (improvised explosive device) accident in June of 2011. “I learned to take personal responsibility for my work. You learn that for a unit to work properly everyone has to be dependable to everyone else. And if you make sure you do your own job as well as possible the rest takes care of itself.” Raaz said. Raaz now lives in Phoenix, Arizona and is enjoying the freedoms of a civilian and being a sniper instructor. His determination and hard work vaulted him through the ranks, and he gives the same advice to students looking at joining the military. “Don't pick the easy route, go after the most challenging and difficult path you can find. The harder you're willing to work and the more you're willing to chance failure, the greater your time will be. They don't give the best missions to underachievers, they go to those who are willing to work the hardest and take the toughest


Jerry Lampert ‘85

TOP LEFT: Lampert on the USS Alabama SSBN-731 JERRY LAMPERT/PHOTO CREDIT TOP RIGHT: Rew (blue gloves) on a medevac mission CHRIS REW/PHOTO CREDIT MIDDLE LEFT: Huisenga with the platoon corpsman LUKE HUISENGA/PHOTO CREDIT MIDDLE RIGHT: Raaz (on right) training in Thailand COLIN RAAZ/PHOTO CREDIT BOTTOM LEFT: Chris Rew with a civilian CHRIS REW/PHOTO CREDIT BOTTOM RIGHT: Lampert’s submarine USS Georgia SSBN-730 JERRY LAMPERT/PHOTO CREDIT jobs.” Raaz said.


Chris Rew ‘03

Cross Country and track runner, band member, paintball player. An average teen male stepped up to protect his country by helping oth-

ers achieve their freedom. Part of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, Chris Rew ‘03, has been overseas twice since enlisting in the military in July of 2009. After graduating from UNI with a B.A. in Microbiology in the fall of

2008, Rew felt he had a duty to our country. “I always felt a calling to join the military and be part of the protection of our country. We live in one of the safest and most prosperous countries in the world, one cannot truly ap-

The Silent Service. Long months with little communication, no contact and no fresh air. On the underwater front lines, Jerry Lampert ‘85 knows what it’s like to virtually lose months of his life at a time. “It was very hard to deploy under water for many months with no contact with your family, children and friends. Silent and deep... The longest I ever stayed underwater was 115 days. I was gone from the United States for almost five months and from the outside world for four months. I remember when I came back to the United States things seemed to move so fast and all I wanted to do was let the wind blow in my face.” Lampert said.

NOVEMBER 13, 2013

Lampert served with distinguished valor as a Nuclear Missile Technician during the Cold War, Persian Gulf War, Iraq War and the Afghanistan War, spending 11 years of his life underwater. Both of Lampert’s brothers also served in the Navy. The only form of communication on the submarines were “family grams” via low frequency radio receptions, 20 words from your loved ones. “We [veterans] share stories and laugh about the funny things, which is easier than talking about when you came home and your baby daughter had started talking or your son is riding a bike, which they weren’t doing before you left for deployment.” Lampert said. Lampert became so close with the men he worked with that his son


is named after two of his friends from the USS Will Rogers SSBN 659. “In the Submarine force you rely on those other men to protect you, believe in you, care for you, share with you.” Lampert said. “You learn to love being who you are. Everyone is very honest and trustworthy.” The underwater members of the Silent Service are not allowed to disclose where they went, even today. “Our job was to be silent and undetectable as a deterrent to nuclear war.” Lampert said. ***

Luke Huisenga ‘99

Late nights, dark skies, and MRE*s are a drastic change from college food, writing for your high school’s newspaper and being on a

rowing team. Luke Huisenga ‘99 has had his fair share of both worlds. “I liked the idea of doing something challenging, physically demanding and team-oriented. It was also in the wake of September 11th. We were already in one war and it was looking like we were going to start another. I wanted to do my part.” Huisenga, who enlisted after college at Boston University and Law School at University of Iowa, said. After going through five months of basic training, Huisenga arrived at his unit in 29 Palms three months before his first deployment. “Life was kind of miserable, I didn’t really have friends there and new Marines get yelled at and messed with quite a bit.” Huisenga said. Huisenga deployed to Iraq with the Marines Corps twice, each time

for about seven months. “I think my deployments were hardest on my parents. It was easier for me, I knew what was going on every day, I could feel like I had some control over my own safety, for them I think it might’ve been different. Every minute I was gone could feel dangerous, they didn’t know when I was on patrol or when I was cleaning floors. They put on a brave face and were always very supportive, but I know it was difficult.” Huisenga said. After his second deployment in 2006, Huisenga came back home to attend law school in Iowa City and spend one more year in the Marines, training new recruits. “When you first come back little things stick out, being able to pick what you eat for dinner, girl’s perfume, good heating/AC and a com-


fortable bed. And then big things, like being alive and being able to see your family again. But going to Iraq didn’t make me a great or wise person. I think I’m still thankful, but I don’t think you’re ever as thankful as when you first get back.” He said. Huisenga rejoined the Marines as a lawyer (judge advocate) in 2011, where he is an officer in the legal department “at a safe desk with hot coffee instead of a desert and guns.” Huisenga is still a member of the Marines serving his country. “What matters is your small piece, your mission, the people who are there with you, and doing the best you can in a situation that isn’t and never will be perfect.” Huisenga said. “We get caught up on so many other things, it’s special to be happy just to be alive.”

LEFT TO RIGHT: High school senior yearbook pictures of Chris Rew ‘03, Collin Raaz ‘04, Jerry Lampert ‘85, and Luke Huisenga ‘99. CITY HIGH YEARBOOKS/ THE RED&WHITE


Iowa City ranks high in literacy and diversity By Sylvia Dean

Fresh and local goods are passed from hand to hand as locals and visitors roam from stand to stand in Iowa City’s award winning farmer’s market. Around the corner, a pair of lively jazz musicians execute their interpretation of Miles Davis’ Four. In the heart of Iowa City lies the recently ranked “top party school of the nation,” the University of Iowa. has ranked Iowa City as one of the 100 top places to live, and according to, it is the fifth best state for young people. studied around 1700 cities in the U.S.A. with populations between 25,000 and 350,000. Tied at 46th along with Santa Monica, California, and Columbia, Missouri, Iowa City has also been recognized for being one of the best places to retire according to the Wall Street Journal, and is ranked the second healthiest city in the United States by Kiplinger’s personal finance magazine. “Iowa City is unique partly because it has such an international flavor with of all of the students and faculty that come from everywhere around the world,” Jim Throgmorton, city council member, said. “All you have to do is go and live in another city, then come back here, you’ll feel the difference.” In addition to the city government, small businesses thrive in Iowa City. Founded in 1978, Prairie Lights is a popular place for readers and writers alike. “Iowa City is very culturally alive,” Jan Weismiller, Prairie Lights employee, said. “It’s a geographical liveable city, and the public schools are considered very good.”

Iowa City is one of six cities of literature in the world, and is home to the writer’s workshop and a number of prominent American authors. “It’s a very vital place to have a bookstore, since so many writers come here,” Weismiller said. “It feels more metropolitan in terms of the book store rather than other businesses, because we have people from all over the world.” Praire Lights has hosted Chinese Poet Fiona Sze-Lorrain who lives in France. One of the other many things that makes Iowa City stand out is the annual farmer’s market, a place where local farmers and artisans can come together to provide their products and fresh produce directly to their consumers. “I like anything related to food.” Eli Shepherd, ‘14, said. “I like going to restaurants, I like going to the coop, I love to cook. I love the farmer’s market, and It’s a huge part of what makes [Iowa City] great.” Whole foods are a rare thing to find. The farmer’s market captures the interest of many locals, in addition to the New Pioneer Food Co-op, founded in 1971. “People tell me all the time that when they move away, there’s nothing like the New Pioneer Coop,” Weismiller said. “Whole foods are very different in New Pi, and having a local food coop that is as good as ours, people take it for granted.” The Iowa City Farmer’s market has been ranked #1 in the state by American Farmland Trust, and #17 in the nation. “I’ve lived in Chicago, Los Angeles, Europe,” said Throgmorton. “I’ve traveled extensively, and I grew up in Kentucky. In some ways there is more to do in other places, but we have a unique place.”

NOVEMBER 13, 2013

Tree sweaters wrap around Iowa City By Lilly Reitz

TOP: The walkway on Clinton Street in downtown Iowa City. BOTTOM: Englert Theatre’s vintage sign SYLVIA DEAN/THE LITTLE HAWK

With the cold winter months approaching, folks are busting out their hats, gloves, and sweaters to stay toasty warm during Iowa’s freezing winter temperatures. However, the citizens of Iowa City aren’t the only ones that are going to stay warm for this snowy season. On November 3rd, more than 135 trees were dressed up in cream and light gray pastel sweaters knit by volunteers in the Iowa City area. Of more than 200 people knitting for the project, one of them is Sara Sullivan, a mother of two and past-teacher at North Central Junior High. Sullivan has been knitting since she was eight and loves the sense of community that the tree sweaters bring. “The tree sweaters are really all about togetherness and fun.” Sullivan said. “I love being able to give things to others that make them smile - even if it’s just passing by a little tree.” Sullivan is knitting for this project in tandem with her best friend, who gave her the idea to knit a Tree Hugger. Their assigned trees are right next to each other. The sweaters are an important part of the project to Sullivan, but to Sullivan and many other knitters alike, the sweaters represent something bigger. “The physical sweaters are fantastic, but the real love of this project for me is the feeling of being a part of something that many others will be able to enjoy,” Sullivan said. Volunteers like Sullivan are an important part of Tree Huggers Project, but the organization of the North Side’s knitting shop, Home Ec, really pulls the project together. The co-owner of Home Ec, Codi Josephson, helps organize the Tree Huggers Project by organizing the yarn and calculating how much yarn per tree is needed. Then, the yarn is bagged up, and Josephson is responsible for making sure the numerous volunteers receive their yarn to start on their sweaters as soon as possible. “It’s a hard job, but [the project] showcases knitting in a rare way.” Josephson said. “It’s definitely worth the hustle and bustle.” The winter of 2013 is the second season that the Tree Huggers Project has been put into action here in Iowa City. In 2012, the trees in Iowa City were dressed up for the first time. “Last year, we didn’t really know what would happen,” Josephson said, “But when all the sweaters went up, there was such a sense of community that we had to do it a second year.” The community of the tree sweaters doesn’t stop when the sweaters are taken down in the spring. After the sweaters do their job of keeping the trees warm during the winter months, the sweaters are donated to numerous charities and Scattergood school.

NOVEMBER 13, 2013


Lil’ hawks pop and lock it

TOP TO BOTTOM, LEFT TO RIGHT: Kiara Forrest, Kiara Forrest, GeneIvone, Ajhanay Allen, Aleeah Williams, Olabisi Kovabel dance for the Hip Hop Club. They are preparing to perform at the next assembly. CORA BERNKLUG/THE LITTLE HAWK

*SMART Boards from A1 “SMART Boards distract students in the classroom.” Isaac Clough, 14’ said. “Many times, the SMART Boards don’t function properly or teachers need constant technical support. It takes up too much of our class time and draws away from the subject.” In a matter of years, new versions of the SMART Board will out-date the software that exists in school today. “Spending millions of dollars on something that is becoming outdated is ridiculous,” Jake Kenyon, 14’ said. “Most teachers, other than math, use the board as a whiteboard. It isn’t worth the millions of dollars that were spent.” Some students and faculty members are complaining that technology should not be as big of a concern to the school board, and that there are more important matters that should to be discussed first. “I haven’t really learned how to use this thing to any degree of effectiveness whatsoever.” Bonnie Hall, spanish teacher said. The only class that students consistently claim uses the board effectively is math. “The math teachers know how to use a SMART Board,” Amber Etschdeit 14’ said. “They use power point and a bunch of other things [Software and Programs] that help.” Math teachers can use graphing software to visually show their students concepts. They can enlarge or shrink images using the smart board. For other teachers, its much harder. An English teacher may write notes on the board, but generally most things are projected from the computer onto the smart board. “SMART Boards are sometimes innovative for teaching, but they aren’t a necessity for every classroom in the district. SMART Boards don’t have special software or tools that can be used for every subject or every class.” Andrew Parr 16’ said. “Elementary students may love them, but I just don’t see the point.”


Read up on fall sports from volleyball to swimming to cross country in our sports section! Also view photos of football games, volleyball matches and cross country and swimming meets.

OPINION Check out Chris Ohrt and Neil Harte’s opinion piece on the new iPhone 5S. Ohrt and Harte discuss the pros and cons of the new phone.



Cheating at City High? It can’t be. Check out Edgar Thornton’s Cheating In The Classroom as he interviews students and faculty about their experiences with cheating.


Listen to Sam Rahn and Edgar Thornton as they discuss Obamacare, the government shutdown and other happenings in current politics.




The Little Hawk investigates the affects of some of the most popular teenage pastimes. Video games (right) and television shows (below) are becoming increasingly violent in today’s society. The result of this kind of exposure is still unknown.


NOVEMBER 13, 2013

By Daniela Perret The mission is to torture the hostage in the most brutal ways possible to get him to tell the needed information. The torture room is equipped with a table covered with weapon options including gasoline, pliers, a pipe wrench and a car battery with clamps. The hostage is then tortured in different ways from having his teeth pulled out to his legs being broken by a wrench. In the end, the hostage tells the torturer the information needed, which is used to kill a suspect of another crime. The mission is complete. This scene is one of the many violent images seen in Grand Theft Auto V, a rising video game among young adults. Ryan Cox ‘14 is one of many students at City High that plays this game. “I think violence in video games is very neat,” Cox said. “It’s what makes the games fun, really. I don’t think there would be

By Will Barker The massively popular TV show The Walking Dead drew 16.1 million viewers in the recent kick off of its fourth season. Since its’ premiere in 2010, The Walking Dead has captivated viewers by depicting gruesomely real violence in every episode. Out of any show on the air The Walking Dead has the most deaths per episode, 38. Other top shows this year included the less violent but much darker Breaking Bad and the fantasy epic Game of Thrones. While these shows are getting awards and are being praised for pioneering the second “Golden Age of Television” one fact is undisputedly true, television shows are becoming more violent. Besides being in the golden age of television, the world is also in the heart of the information age. Children see advertisements for both children’s and adult’s shows, and with access to the internet children can easily watch any show. Some parents believe that these shows have a negative effect on children and are strict with their kids when it comes to watching adult shows. “Our family has never had the Internet, or cable TV in our home” said Kristin Bergman, an Iowa City massage therapist and mother of two. “I have always wanted us to instead spend time reading books, cooking healthy foods or going for walks outside.”

nearly as many gamers in the world if all video games were happy and non-violent.” Although it hasn’t been proven that violent video games such as Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty have a negative effect on their players, the question on whether there is a direct relationship between violence in video games and real-world violence has become a rising issue. “The problem is, there’s no set research,” Jane Green, psychology teacher at City High said. “We can’t say, ‘if you do this video game you’re going to be aggressive.’ But what they’re trying to do is they’re trying to look at correlational statistics. And what researchers are finding is that as violence in video games goes up, real world violence goes up.” Peter Larsen ‘15 feels that the effects of violent video games depend on the particular people that play them. “Personally I feel that violent video games have not affected the way I act in my life but they could have an effect on other people’s lives in negative ways,” Larsen said. “Video games are a virtual reality and I don’t think it’s actual reality. I know the

Bergman says she was turned on to these ideas early in her parenting when she read Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television by Jerry Mander. Mander’s main point is that television allows the government to exercise greater control over its people. Another point that Manders makes is that television places the viewer in an alternate reality which is unhealthy for young children. “It was important to me that my kids actively used their imagination, instead of just being passively entertained.” Bergman said. On the receiving end of these parenting techniques is Bergmans’ son, Emi Bergman-Corbet. While he understands and appreciates the rules, he likes to be part of the decision process. “If you try to teach the kid to not be violent, that can be helpful,” said Emi Bergman-Corbet ‘17. “If kids have a say in their punishments, they can really benefit.” However the overall exposure to violence that today’s children experience has come into question. Mrs. Green, the psychology teacher at City High works with students to understand the effects of these violent shows. “The research shows that as violence in media goes up, real world violence goes up,” said Green. “However, we cannot draw a direct correlation yet.” While violent shows can be entertaining, many psychologists have also proven the negative effects of these shows.

difference between virtual and real but some kids might not be able to differentiate between the two.” The virtual reality aspect of video games is what draws most adolescents in. “I never really feel bad after playing Grand Theft Auto or Call of Duty, it’s all fake. If you kill someone it’s not a real person so you don’t really feel bad. GTA isn’t like an outlet for me, it’s not like I like killing people,” Larsen said. “The game is fun and I like to have fun. In the game you can do whatever you want, it’s a world where you can do anything.” Although this part of video games may be appealing, researchers are questioning whether the violence levels in modern video games are becoming too high. “If you look at movies like Die Hard 1-3 or Lethal Weapon 1-3, they ratchet up the violence in each one and they’re doing the same thing to video games,” Green said. “And the question is, is that a good idea? Do we need that much violence?” In a study done this year published by the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, study participants played either a non-violent or a violent video game for a total of 20 minutes per day over the course of three days to find if violent video games caused aggression. After participants played the game, they took part in a competitive task in which if they won, they were allowed to blast their competition with an unpleasant noise. Researchers conducting the study found that the participants who previously played the violent video games blasted their competition for a longer time than the participants who had played the non-violent video game. This was then interpreted as an increase in aggressive behaviour. “Meta-analyses have found that there are at least five effects of violent video game play,” Douglas Gentile, Psychology Professor at Iowa state said. “Increased aggressive thoughts, increased aggressive feelings, increased physiological arousal, increased aggressive behavior, and decreased positive prosocial behavior.” An aspect that has also connected video games to real world violence is army training. During combat training, many trainees train through simulators, that are often inspired by civilian video/computer games such as World of Warcraft as stated in “The Army Gets Unreal: The Pros & Cons Of Video Games For Combat Training” published on “It’s not video games that cause us to be aggressive,” Green said. “But of you have a constant diet of those or constant exposure to those, it’s going to make you less sensitized or desensitized to violence and that’s what they’re worried about.”

“I believe there is research to suggest that if we are exposed to sexual themes and violence, over time we are desensitized to the content,” Brenda Payne, a local clinical psychologist who works mainly with children and adolescents, said. “If you see something over and over again, it just doesn’t seem like a big deal any more,” Local Physician Janet Clark said. “TV images replace really seeing something, but our brains don’t know fully that the image isn’t a real one,” Clark said. “The brain is fairly plastic in it’s ability to reform patterns of thought and response based on what it habitually is exposed to.” Many high school students, whom most of these shows are directed towards, believe that they are mature enough to handle the violence and that watching violent TV shows is harmless as long as the viewer is able to determine what is reality and what is fiction. “I feel like violent shows and video games decrease violence,” said Julia Beasley, ‘15. “They can release negative feelings kids have through something that is non threatening, like a TV show.” Television is an enormous industry. Television experts are paid to determine what content will keep viewers coming back. Recently these experts have determined that violent shows will sell. However, now many parents are listening to child psychologists and child development researchers and keeping a close eye on what their children watch.



Executive Editors

The Little Hawk


Staff Editorial:

Creating equity in AP

City High administration and staff have a responsibility to ensure that they are creating a culture that encourages all students regardless of race to prepare themselves for their future by taking AP classes.

ellen carman, jacob potash

News Editor ellen carman

Opinion Editors neil harte, lilly reitz

A&E Editor will barker

Feature Editors

daniela perret, jacob potash

Sports Editor annika wasson

Photo Editor kierra zapf

Copy Editor leah hoelscher

Online Editors

elijah jones, chris ohrt

Ad Managers

abby dickson, emma mcnutt


maya bergman-corbet, dominic balestrieri-fox, cora bern-klug, jacob buatti, emilie burden, anton buri, micah cabbage, sylvia dean,abigail dickson, keighley ehmsen, payton evans, jonas geerdes, claire goodfellow, nathan goodman, lauren hudachek, nathan katalinich, schuyler libe, rebecca meyer, claire noack, braden offerman-mims, cody owen, olivia parrot, sabrina rodgers, edgar thorton, hailey verdick, christopher


Is it the school’s responsibility to encourage equal representation of minority students in AP clsasses?


jonathan rogers

mission statement The Little Hawk, the student newspaper of City High School, aims to inform, educate and entertain readers; to provide an educational opportunity for the students who produce it; and to provide a medium for commercial advertising. Equity Statements English Version: It is the policy of the Iowa City Community School District not to discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status, disability, or socioeconomic status in its educational programs, activities, or employment practices. If you believe you have (or your child has) been discriminated against or treated unjustly at school, please contact the Equity Director, Ross Wilburn, at 509 S. Dubuque Street, 319-688-1000. Spanish Version: Declaración de Equidad: Es la política de Iowa City Community School District no descriminar en base a raza, credo, color, género, origen, religión, edad, estado civil, orientación sexual, estado de veterano, incapacidad, =estado socio-económico en sus programas educacionales, actividades, o políticas de empleo. Si usted piensa que usted o su hijo (a) han sido descriminados o que han sido tratados injustamente en la escuela, por favor comuníquese con el Director de Equidad, Ross Wilburn, 509 S. Dubuque Street, teléfono: 319-688-1000.

City High takes pride in being a diverse school. True diversity, however, must extend beyond our hallways and into our classrooms. If individual classes do not represent the diversity of the school, diversity of perspective and culture are not being shared in an educational environment. For example, if this year’s AP Literature and Composition class was to act out Shakespeare’s Othello it would not be very believable. There are no African-American students in the class. Of the eighteen percent of our student body that is African-American, not a single student decided to take this class, AP German, AP Economics, AP Calculus AB, or AP Statistics. Minorities are severely underrepresented in most AP classes. Of the twenty AP classes offered at City this year only one class, AP Lang. and Comp has a minority population comparable to that of our school. In addition, the district has seen overrepresentation of minority students in special education classes. City High also takes pride in being “The school that leads.” The

achievement gap is, of course, not a problem unique to our school. No matter if it is discussed in terms of socio-economic status or race it is a nationwide issue. City High has taken on a certain responsibility with its motto. To lead is to innovate and experiment. No one can say that they know the secret formula that will create diversity in all classes, but it comes down to having people who are willing to try to make it happen. If any school is going to take on this challenge, it should be City High. The school is already equipped with the most essential tool to a good education and successful future... Amazing teachers. Now it’s just a matter of starting a discussion, setting goals, and finding realistic and productive solutions. Changing a student’s mindset is key. Minority students have expressed that sometimes they will choose not to take an AP class because it is not considered acceptable in their peer group. Some students believe that their friends choose not to because they do not want to act “too smart.” This is perhaps one of the most challenging barriers the school will face when confronting

NO 3

this problem. It’s essential to make students see that taking an AP class is not about looking smart. The decision to take an AP class should be rooted in a student’s desire to be successful in the future. It is just a matter of finding a way to motivate students to take on the challenge and give them the tools, including confidence, that they need to succeed. This process must start much earlier than high school. The new (February 2013) ICCSD Diversity Policy is a good first step. In theory, if classrooms become more equal in terms of the levels of free and reduced lunch eligible students in each class, all students will have a similar learning environment. This will eliminate groups of students who enter junior high and high school having been in very inferior learning environments for up to seven years. However, the Diversity Policy alone is not enough. A strong emphasis should be placed on reaching out to parents throughout a student’s PreK-12 years. Some parents don’t know how to access the information they need to help their kids succeed. The

school should take a more active role in educating parents. At City this may be offering more meetings for parents explaining curriculum, like AP classes. While parents and teachers can help encourage and educate, when students graduate they will have to rely on their own desire to learn for future success. City’s main focus should be to instill a passion for education in all students. Too often, students simply aren’t motivated or lack the confidence to be successful in challenging AP courses. The underrepresentation of minority students in AP classes signifies a problem in the culture of our school. No student should feel isolated in any class. No student should feel that they are too far behind in their education to be successful in an AP class. Perfection isn’t a realistic goal, but having no goal at all is unacceptable. If we want to be able to honestly say “we are the school that leads” we need to set an example. An example that shows the community and the nation that it is possible for all students, regardless of race or class, to be as prepared as possible for future success.

NOVEMBER 13, 2013




Mean Girls is Life by Micah Cabbage Since its release almost 10 years ago, Mean Girls has infected the minds of teenage girls, and even some boys, all around the world with ideas of how typical high school cliques work and their effects on the student body. Written by Tina Fey and based partially off of the book Queen Bees and Wannabes by Rosalind Wiseman, the plot shows an exaggerated version of what high school really is. It includes all of the typical stereotypes and cliques and how they interact with one another. The thing that is the most striking is how such a cliché movie applys in numerous ways to the various lives of high school students. Considered one of the sharpest high school satires of all time by Entertainment Weekly, the movie is highly relatable to a majority of people, which I, along with most teenagers, can agree with. Take Regina George for example, there’s a girl like her at every school. She’s perfect and popular, every girl wants to be her, and every boy wants to be with her. She’s dating the hot soccer player with a cute wrestler on the side, has the perfect long blonde hair, and a killer closet. While she may look perfect, she’s actually a manipulative bitch, controlling everything she can. She is the central style icon of the school as well. If Regina wears tank tops with inappropriate cut outs, you better cut your tank top and wear it the next


day otherwise you’d be seen as lame So when Regina invites Cady to join and “so not fetch.” Everyone knows her and her clique, Cady is psyched. a manipulative alpha female who But just wait, Regina breaks girl can spin just about everyone around code when she kisses Cady’s crush, their finger and pressure them into Aaron Samuels, and girl world turns doing things like drinking, partying, into a battlefield. and much more. But every queen Like any other girl would be, bee has its worker bees... Cady is pissed. She devises a plan to Then we have Gretchen Weiners bring Regina down along with Janis and Karen Smith: her little workers. and Damian: two rejects who have They don’t really think for them- felt Regina’s wrath in the past. Her selves. They basically serve the pur- attempts to bring Regina down are pose of looking good next to Regina at first very clever; giving her foot in their clique, The Plastics. While cream for her face and even trying these girls don’t to ruin seem to play a her permajor part in fect phy“Though it’s cliche, a sique with this movie, there movie like Mean Girls is w e i g h t are girls like them in high actually a great example gain proschools everyof the way cliques oper- tein bars. where; they folWho hasn’t ate and their effects on d o n e low the queen high schoolers.” bee around for something status and popcatty in orularity (someder to get thing most girls what they are obsessed with having in the want? search to find themselves). Cady also happens to be exObviously not many schools tremely bright, especially in math. will have the whole, “I’m new, I just But the problem with her is that she moved here from Africa!” girl, but “dumbs herself down” in order to Cady Heron shares many common get math help from the stud Aaron traits with the typical teenage girl. Samuels. There is nothing more Instead of sticking to her innocent frustrating than a girl who makes roots, Cady wants to fit in. Aban- herself seem less intelligent than she doning earlier personas to be cool actually is, something girls do far in a new environment isn’t unusual, too often. Guys don’t find it attraceveryone has tried to fit in before. tive! Cady eventually comes to the

realization that being herself is the most important, and it is then that she lands Aaron Samuels’ heart. The drama between Jason and Gretchen is also a common problem that I can guarantee any high school girl can relate to. They’re not quite dating, but more than friends. Jason is obviously using Gretchen, but Gretchen can’t really see that, she just likes the attention from him. Today it seems that there are a lot more “flings” than actual relationships, and the interaction between Jason and Gretchen is a prime example of this new casual way of relations. There is always girl-on-girl drama, but Regina takes it to another level with the Burn Book. Something about spreading a rumor about a girl making out with a hot dog just seems to be rather ridiculous. But on top of that, there’s a whole book full of rumors to that extent and worse. The Burn Book isn’t unlike social media sites used to bring people down, such as Imagine the damage Regina could have done with the technology of today. From Regina’s catty behavior towards Cady to Gretchen’s insecurities, there’s something for everyone to relate to in the “girl movie” of the century. Though it’s cliche, a movie like Mean Girls is actually a great teaching example of the way cliques operate and their effects on high schoolers.


The Foreigner Tree sweaters Thanksgiving break Thursday Movies Eminem’s “Marshall Mathers LP 2” 200 yard medly relay swimming record broken Getting into college Lorde


Trimester finals Chalkboards going AWOL Art by Neil Harte

Every year there are a few things we can rely on. We can always rely on Iowa weather being unpredictable, a test being a day earlier than expected, and having a terrible parking spot in the lower lot at school. But the thing we all can rely on the most is annual video game franchises churning out new installments in the fall. Just look at Call of Duty, look at Assassin’s Creed, look at Madden. Every year we are guaranteed more of the same. These massively popular video games are made by heartless corporations bent on making countless amounts of money, which happens to be just the motivation the developers of such games need to rush out their entertainment with what seems like no effort. Like

a horse following a carrot on a fishing pole, these young, feeble nerds are forced to make magical products under ridiculous amounts of pressure, and they do so without a squeak, game after game. Some might say that these annual franchises are nothing but unoriginal, callous cash grabs that are essentially reselling the same product every single fall. That’s not entirely true, however, because every year there are some improvements. For example, Activision’s brand new Call of Duty: Ghosts now has a dog as a main character, the first ever with good hygiene. On top of being able to roll over and play dead, in multiplayer mode you can now choose to play as a woman, finally catching up with Title IX. In addition to Call

Of Duty releasing their annual shootyshoot game, the latest stabby-stab game by Ubisoft has also just been released. Their latest blockbuster game tries to redefine its Assassin’s Creed franchise. In the new Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag, not only are there now just assassins, but there are also pirates, pirate assassins, assassin pirates, assassins of pirates, and probably aliens. Without a doubt, Ubisoft could have stopped there, but they are also getting ahead of the curve by creating enhanced tree movement. Ha! Beat that, Battlefield 4! In this bloated marketplace, all of the money is sucked up by blockbuster video game franchises that

have no reason to innovate. After all, millions of fanboys will flock to the stores to buy their favorite new old games no matter what. This inevitably causes most independent developers that attempt to make their own original creations struggle to find a viable market share. Like pop music and tight jeans, anybody who does not join in with the mainstream are swiftly ridiculed or entirely neglected. Everyone knows that the only way to be happy is to be just like everyone else. We all wear the same clothes, we all act the same, and we play the same games on the same consoles just because everyone else is doing so. We are all products of a culture that wants to sell us more products. So add me on PSN!

Common App crashing Friends graduating early Violence College essays Uggs


NOVEMBER 13, 2013



Working for nothing by EDGAR THORTON

minimum wage increase. It found that teenage unemployment rose to 28.3% in 2011, more than double the 2007 low of 12.9%. It would not only affect the employees, it would affect their employers too. An independent analysis pegged the cost to McDonalds Corporation at $8.13 billion, which is $2.6 billion above last years profit. That money would have to come from either price increases in the goods and services minimum wage workers provide, or in a reduction in labor costs, aka jobs. Daniel Aaronson, an economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, uses a rough estimate that every 10 percent increase in the minimum wage adds about 1 percent to prices. Under that model most items on McDonald’s dollar menu would increase to roughly $1.10 (which is already happening, the price of the McDouble in increasing to $1.19). Although this doesn’t seem like it would have a strong impact, it would affect people of all economic statuses. A worker that is now getting paid over $15 would also be paying more

Art by Neil Harte

It is 2030, and you walk into a McDonalds. Instead of employees taking your order, there is just an iPad with a menu and a credit card reader. This image of the future may seem unrealistic, but it may not be so far off. Last July, fast food workers across the country said enough is enough, walked out on their employers, and joined thousands of others on the picket lines in support of a “living” wage of $15 dollars an hour. This is a noble idea, but these workers fail to realize that if the minimum wage was that high, they may not be earning anything at all. One restaurant industry group has run a full page ad in the New York Times depicting that scene of automated ordering and production. It that a baseless prediction or realistic possibility in the near future? “Doubling wages would definitely have an impact on the creation of new jobs,” Scott DeFife, Executive VP of the National Restaurant Association, said. “It would be especially harmful to young people.” However, a change in prices or jobs due to an increase in the minimum wage is hard to quantify before it happens. One study from the Employment Policies Institute said that the last increase in minimum wage, from $5.15 to $7.25, meant that 114,000 teens did not have jobs. Another study from economists David Macpherson and William Even detailed Rhode Island’s

for goods and services. President Obama, however, was more reasonable than the protesters. “No one who works full-time should have to live in poverty.” Obama said at the 2013 State of the Union speech, where he advocated raising minimum wage to $9.00 an hour. He however has changed his position and of November supports a raise to $10.10. “This proposal that addresses income inequality in a powerful way.” a spokesperson for Rep. Miller(D-CA). The problems with low wages and income inequality suggest deeper issues with our education and society. A one-times raise would not fix the problem. “Low wages for adults are a sign that something didn’t go right in terms of education and work experience,” economics professor George Bittlingmayer University of Kansas School of Business said. A better, but imperfect, solution would be to tie minimum wage to inflation. Using the consumer price index, the most accepted measure of inflation, the minimum wage in 2009 of $7.25 would equal $7.91 in today’s dollars, a far cry from the $9 or $15 dollar wages that are being suggested. If we as a society are poorly educating and training workers it does not matter how high the minimum wage is income inequality will remain. “We’re not addressing the cause,” Bittlingmayer said.

“I’ve never been more in love with a 250 pound woman!” -Mr. Rogers watching Barefoot Contessa

“When somebody’s staring at their lap and moving their hand they are either texting or doing something I don’t want to know about.” -Mrs. Wilson “I’m going to ‘hook you up’ with a couple of partners... But not in the way you kids would say it.” -Mrs. Gibbens “I don’t even know the alphabet! A..B..then what?!” -Mrs. Green “I can’t help you. I’m on drugs.” -Mrs. Foreman after returning from the doctor


“They were in the corner snogging. I was afraid they couldn’t breathe!” -Sra. Hall

Confessions of a Pinterest addict by SYLVIA DEAN and ELENA FOSTER

Art by Neil Harte

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a place to go when you need a new wardrobe? A Halloween costume? Or even a first date idea? All of those things and more are found in one website. Not only has Pinterest taken social networking to the next level, it allows us to store ideas for immediate, as well as future, use. Surpassed only by Facebook and Twitter, Pinterest is the third most popular social networking site. However, they are very hard to compare. Pinterest, with 70 million users according to, is new and unique. Twitter was launched in 2006, and Facebook even earlier, in 2004. Pinterest was created in the early 2010, and by the following year was named one of the “50 Best Websites of 2011” by Time magazine. Facebook and Twitter are cen-

tered around interacting with other users. Even though Pinterest can be used to communicate with others, it’s mainly a closet for ideas, and takes idea-sharing to the next level. Recipes, wedding traditions, and inspirational quotes that in the past might have been passed within families from hand to hand are now shared quicker than ever before between friends, acquaintances, and even between total strangers. However, the easily accessible website can present certain issues as well. According to, Pinterest users spend an average of about 90 minutes on the site per day, compared to an average 30 minutes spend on Twitter. Anybody who has used Pinterest know how addictive the site can be. Logging on in order to find a recipe for dinner can easily turn into a mar-

athon pinning session. All things considered, it’s probably better to fill your head with numerous creative ideas rather than just scrolling through an endless news feed about an ex’s life. It’s great to have a website so unique as this, and it literally has something for everyone. I have seen pins anywhere from “How to make your own knit slug hat” all to way to “How to make the perfect creme brulee.” In this day and age, it’s hard to come up with new, never before seen ideas on your own, and that’s why Pinterest is such a big deal. It is virtually a safety net for parties, dinners, or whatever you have going on. In the coming years, it’s possible that we will even start to see more and more websites mimicking Pinterest, giving a completely new name to social networking.

NOVEMBER 13, 2013



Say whaaat?! by SCHUYLER LIBBY Exactly how far is too far? What is morally right or wrong? For most of us, the answers to these questions seem clear as we make judgments based on what we see, hear, and read in the media. However, most of us have not been invited into the actual process in which someone picks through all the raw material and decides what you are allowed to see, essentially censoring reality. Censorship can be summed up as the root of all evil for a journalist. Censorship in the media, in particular, is a heated topic in society. There are extreme supporters of censorship, such as middle-aged book banners who believe that reading Harry Potter is a free ticket to Hell, and then there are those (such as myself) who believe that in most cases we should not have our thoughts and opinions being redacted in the slightest. Censorship is the same as taping someone’s mouth shut; we’re voicing our opinion and we should be able to speak our minds without being censored with a bleep or a tap of the delete button. However, censorship isn’t all bad because there are some situations where it is required. For instance to respect the deceased, protect victims, and not allow discriminatory opinions to filter through into our media. The problem with this is that

the process is innately flawed. It raises the question; who exactly has the right to determine what others can and cannot see? I do give credit to those who do this job, such as editors and publishers. But people in those positions have a moral compass of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ and honestly, the world is not black and white. In fact, most of the world and the people in it would be better represented as somewhere in the grey. When someone is given the power of censorship, we miss out on the reality of things, instead, giving us an edited, censored version of reality. Sure, there may be just one line, idea, or joke somewhere in an article but we still miss out on that raw individuality of the real world that censorship prohibits. My main issue is when views that oppose the mainstream are not given coverage or even a voice at all. These do not include hateful or discriminatory views but ones that may be considered radical for their originality. We are brought up to believe in our entitlement to free speech and the power of the press, but really there is so much going on behind the scenes that the result is premeditated, repetitive media. And let’s be honest, it’s not a four-letter word, but censorship, that continues to feed the dirty mind. Art by Maya Burgman-Corbet

One size doesn’t fit all by NEIL HARTE Someone walking into City High today after being away for a few years might be excused for not recognizing the place. After all, from the new Multipurpose Turf Field that first saw action this past spring, to the beautiful Performing Arts Wing just opened in September, to various personnel and staff changes that have occurred as of late, our school has been transformed in a relatively short period of time. Oh, and then there are those gigantic funny looking screens that have elbowed aside blackboards and overhead projectors in nearly every classroom. I’m talking, of course, about SMARTboards, a key part of the Iowa City Community School District’s $2 million EveryClassroom Technology Campaign to provide teachers with “instructional technology that helps them connect with students ….” Over the last few years, SMARTboards have taken over as kings of the classrooms. This latest educational “tool”, were are told, has the potential for both making supply-and-demand curves in economics more interesting and quadratic functions in math more immediate. Is it my imagination, or does the ICCSD truly believe that just by adding SMARTboards our learning will be magically improved? Technology, the ICCSD seems to be saying whenever it gets the chance, is synonymous with improvement. They claim, for example, that technology not only “boosts students’ self-esteem” but

also “is shown to improve behavior.” This may be true for a handful of students, but surely it isn’t a one size fits all situation. Try as the district might to paint its campaign as revolutionary and effective, technology cannot be the answer to every problem. But it probably is the most expensive. Aside from the initial cost of upwards of $4,000 a piece, SMARTboards require extensive training. Never mind that by the time teachers finally figure out the nuts and bolts of these very expensive whiteboards— the main use of SMARTboards by the common teacher—the boards may be obsolete and slated to be replaced by the newest (and similarly temporary) electronic device.. Chalkboards, on the other hand, have stood the test of time. In fact, wherever they have managed to survive the arrival of whiteboards and SMARTbombs, teachers use them today much in the same way as did George Baron, credited with being the first American educator to use them when he began teaching math at The United States Military Academy in 1801. Not only are chalkboards a piece of our history, they also work 100% of the time, and have a pleasant staccato sound when written on (unlike the pathetic little thud of writing on a SMARTboard). They don’t freeze up, they never reboot unexpectedly and you don’t need hours of regular training to use them properly . SMARTboards, on the other hand, are prone

to going haywire on the daily and are probably nothing but a quick fad that will disappear as fast as it arrived. Regardless, teachers who opposed this change from the beginning—like almost every science teacher—have to sit idly by while their simple, beloved chalkboards are carted out, never to be seen again. Although not technologically up to date, chalkboards are perfect for many teachers, and if they work, why get rid of them? Apparently, the ICCSD Technology Campaign has managed to come up with a reason to get rid of them. They claim “students today learn in different ways than they did 50 (or even 20) years ago.” Oh, I’m sorry. I totally forgot how humans have now developed ways to inject complicated physics formulae straight into their blood stream and can now magically soak up information through the sheer power of osmosis. How could I ever have been so silly to forget all about our newly acquired mutant abilities? According to the district, SMARTboards have the power to introduce “new topics with highly engaging content or teaching topics in new ways” such as drawing graphs in a sparkly rainbow color. Also according to the district is how, “the 21st century classroom includes technology that allows students to acquire skills and habits in a digital environment.” Hmm… habits like cyber bullying and sexting? Thanks, technology!

To give the district some credit, SMARTboards can be utilized to their full potential; it’s just not common... at all. In fact, only one or two teachers at City High are fluent in SMARTboard technology, using applications like SketchPad to aid their lesson (I’m looking at you, Mr. Miller!). These technologically savvy teachers use the boards to make learning more exciting, exactly as the district intended them to be used. These examples of making best use of the SMARTboards, however, are few and far between. For the over 99% of teachers, SMARTboards are just there for the sake of being there. The boards may not cause them any problems per say (other than frequent failure and glitching), but they don’t make their classes any more engaging than they already are. The problem is that not every teacher can utilize the SMARTboards in the way the district want them to. Be it because of technological challenges or because their curriculum simply doesn’t call for it, some teachers just don’t use technology in their class. Does this lack of technology immediately make teaching abstract and complex ideas no longer possible? According to the district, the answer is yes. The solution should be a twostep process: The first step is to stop trying to trick people with the use of vague propaganda into thinking that technology is the only way kids learn nowadays. The second is to have

the district offer teachers a choice: SMARTboard or no SMARTboard. If it were an option for teachers to accept technology into their classrooms or continue teaching as they were (as opposed to an executive decision), both students and teacherswould benefit. Chalkboards aficionados would be able to keep their chalkboards, and the technologically adept would carry on with their effective use of the new technological tools given to them. Not only would our school district save massive amounts of money in the process, teachers would teach how they want to teach, making classes more interactive, collaborative, and hands on. “Classrooms are filled with a wide range of students who think, perform, and learn in distinctly different ways,” the district claims. And although this is true, the district has clearly forgotten that teachers likewise think, perform, and teach in different ways. “The variety of applications available on interactive whiteboards is almost limitless,” the Iowa City Community School Technology Campaign says. “The best part is that the students can’t wait to get a chance to work on the board. It engages kids and turns them on to learning.” Maybe it’s just me, but I have a hard time thinking of a single time when anyone was actually “turned on” by somebody getting the chance to stand up and do calculus on a SMARTboard... At least not by the board.

The Little Hawk



AP Studio Art

In a new art class students are working toward AP credit in mixed medias that also are geared toward getting students jobs in the art world.

TITLE OF ART: Vision like Clockwork - ART BY ELINOR LORING

By Sylvia Dean

tography page on Facebook, Less Than 3 photography.” Olivia Peterson, ‘13, is also a life-long artist, and pursues painting and drawing because of the thrill she gets from doing something she loves. The art department at City high is known for a long, lasting “I’ve always liked art ever since elementary school,” Peterson tradition of excellence. This year, students said. “I remember really loving are taking advantage of the new AP Studio the projects we would do in art Art class, and are preparing themselves for a class and I guess it just took off bright and creative future. from there. I think I really started Elinor Loring, ‘14, has been passionate getting serious about it freshman about art since she was young. year though.” “I got started with art when I was really Peterson has taken painting young,” Loring said. “I would always draw and drawing in the past, and also during class, and I still do. People would alparticipates in the AP studio art ways ask me to draw things for them, and class at City High. Her favorite this year I’m taking AP studio art.” thing to do is paint. Loring has taken many classes at City “I really like painting and High and continues to take more. drawing because it can make me “Its something I always knew I was good -Elinor Loring‘14 feel calm and happy but also exat. Its easier for me to express myself because cited to be doing something I I’m not much of a talker,” Loring said. “I like love,” Peterson said. “I really like that I can tell a story or evoke an emotion water colors and acrylics, and I do with my art. Showing instead of telling.” a lot of still lifes.” Outside of school, Loring stays active with art. She spends Jill Harper is an art teacher at city high, and this year is teachher time participating in competitions, including competitions ing AP studio art. for greeting cards, as well as cd covers. In addition, she runs her “I actually didn’t set out to be an art teacher. I did a BFA in photography business. studio art painting and I was gonna make it as a painter,” Harper “I’ve had work showcased at the Chait Gallery and in Iowa said. “I realized I didn’t like to be locked up in my own studio all City school district shows,” Loring said. “I also have my own phoday. I like to work with people, so I decided to go back to school

“I like that I can tell a story or evoke an emotion with my art.”

and become certified to teach.” Harper was taught art in high school by her own parents, and has taught art at City High for ten years herself. “I’ve had some classes that I’ve really been close to, and there are certain groups of people together that just gell,” Harper said. She remembers participating in a community project making large mosaic sculptures, a task that spanned across three years. “Something about working with glass is that it’s very meditative, especially mosaics. You form a bond with the other people with these large assignments when you talk,” Harper said. “The life stories really start to come out with these people, in the midst of doing something with your hands. I think that is what it’s all about even more than the art for expressing your individuality. It’s a group thing, and we are all very connected.” Harper has confidence in her students, and encourages them to be themselves, and to pursue their dreams. “There have been a lot of successful students in art. Jacob Yates, for example,” said Harper. “He gave me an announcement for his BFA art show with the University of Iowa, he was just in Italy for awhile. He was quite an accomplished artist then, and now he’s going to Italy.” “I definitely want art to be involved in my career,” Peterson said. “I can see myself doing it for the rest of my life.” Loring also continues to take steps to a career in art by taking a few senior portraits of her close friends and family. “I’m not really sure where art will take me,” Loring said. “AP Studio Art is really helping me make a decision if I want to go into art. I think no matter what, art will always be a part of my life.”

TITLE OF ART: Left to right: Dollar Bill, Tomatoes, flowers still life - ART BY OLIVIA PETERSON Floating Girl, still painting - ART BY ELINOR LORING

NOVEMBER 13, 2013



City High Jazz Band brings in professionals By Maya Bergman-Corbet

For the first time in City High history, the Jazz Band program has expanded to four bands. There are simply too many enthusiastic students to fit into three. The jazz bands will also be hosting renowned jazz musicians Ron Carter and Wycliffe Gordon. “In order to create a better experience for… (the saxophones), I created a group that is a saxophone section,” Ryan Arp, jazz band director, said. Since there were over 35 students that auditioned this year, and the average jazz band has only five saxophones, giving them their own band will allow these students to have a more individual experience, and contribute more to the band. Not that this will cause any problems with performing music, as the variety of notes available with saxophones makes everything from an soprano voice to a bass voice possible. “A lot of the music is adaptable to fit the saxophones, so it should work out just fine,” Arp said. “You can covert all the parts of the jazz band to just a saxophone section.” Also new this year are two visiting musicians, Wycliffe Gordon and Ron Carter, who are coming to City High to work with the students. Wycliffe Gordon is a nationally famous trombone player who was named Trombonist of The Year by the Jazz Journalists Association for the ninth time since 2001.

Unknown restaurants of Iowa City By Sabrina Rodgers

Pizza Bros

A brand new pizza place has opened up downtown. Pizza Bros was established in 2013 and is located in the Old Capitol Mall. However, it is not your ordinary pizzeria. At Pizza Bros you get to make your own pizza. First you decide on an 8” or 10” crust, then you can choose from many different sauces and cheeses to add to your pizza. Next you can put on all of your ordinary pizza toppings or if you want to spice things up a bit you can add a variety of toppings such as, chicken, ranch, fruit, lettuce, broccoli, alfredo, mac and cheese, and many more. After you finish creating your personalized pizza they cook it in approximately three minutes. Each pizza costs 45 cents per ounce. I would give Pizza Bros an 4 out of 5 stars because they have all

Ron Carter is a globally celebrated jazz bassist who has won two Grammys and spent 1963-68 playing in the Miles Davis quintet. His newest album is called San Sebastian. A fifth year jazz saxophone player Josh Brook, ‘15, is excited to learn from these musicians. “It is important that the jazz teachers come in because they teach us not only how to play jazz music better, they also teach us a sense of style” Brook said. “They give us confidence because we are able to play with musicians of such high caliber.” “Music is going to go wherever we take it...It kinda connects us to the universe.” Wycliffe Gordon, trombone player, conductor, composer, and arranger said. He came to City High early in November to work with the jazz bands. “I want to give them the advantage of my experience as a professional musician.” Gordon said. City High was chosen by Hancher Auditorium to host Gordon during a twelve day residency in Iowa City. With proficiency in over 23 instruments, including all the brass, piano, clarinet, drums and string bass, and lifetime of experience with jazz music, he was able to really help with student musicians. Brook believes that experienced artists can help to install “a sense of confidence about performances. Not just in playing, but also in how we act.” “Music affects everything in my life. Music will just take you places,” Gordon said. “How you practice, and develop your individual skills on your instrument can be a good model for how you can do other things in all walks of life.” Gordon believes that music can help people to persevere through oth-


the toppings you can think of and my pizza was really yummy. Although it is a little messy to eat, it still had everything I wanted on it, it was made fast and well, it was better than having a normal pizza, and it wasn’t too expensive.

Thai Flavors

Thai Flavors is located in downtown Iowa City at 340 E Burlington Street near the Robert A. Lee Recreation Center. This is an authentic and gluten-free friendly Thai restaurant where you can dine in, takeout, or have it delivered. First I started off with the Appetizer Sampler which had two egg rolls, two crab rangoons, four tofu delights, four pot stickers, two shrimp in a blanket and three sauces. Out of the five options in the Sampler I would recommend the pot stickers and the crab rangoons because they were some of the best I’ve had. The Sampler was $14.95 and

ABOVE:Wycliffe Gordon teaches members of the City High Jazz Bands. Wycliffe has received the jazz trombonist player of the year eight times and has a website by his name filled with his work. KIERRA ZAPF AND NATHAN GOODMAN/THELITTLEHAWK

er aspects of their life, as long as they are truly dedicated to music and practice. In high school, he was in marching band, concert band, jazz band, and pep band. After sticking with music for his whole life, Gordon got to perform music with people like Buster Cooper and Duke Ellington. He has made a record label with his and other people’s music, mostly his good friend Wynton Marsalis.


that may seem expensive but it gives you a good amount of food to eat and you’re able to try a variety of different Thai foods. The main dish I had was the Sweet and Sour (Thai Style) Stir Fried Dish. It contained your choice of meat, pineapple, bell peppers, tomatoes, and carrots in a Thai style sweet and sour sauce. The meat was cooked just right, and all the other ingredients and flavors really tied everything together. I enjoyed the stir fry but there was nothing super special about it. The stir fry was $9.95 which is a good price for the amount of food. Thai Flavors got a 3.5 out of 5 stars, because the food was authentic and tasteful.

Teddy’s Bigger Burgers

Teddy’s Bigger Burgers is a franchise from Hawaii that has come to downtown Iowa City. This old fashioned burger joint opened on August 18th on East Washington Street next

Jazz is a unique type of music because performances are less strict and organized, with more imagination and creativity on the part of the musicians. “I like jazz band because I can get up and do whatever I want.” Brooks said. The program has many new and exciting events this year, including a new band and visiting performers.


to Gabe’s. I tried the #1 Big Combo which is a 5 ounce original big burger, fries and a drink for $8.79. Each burger has a delicious sweet and tangy Super Sauce on it that made it taste even better, I gave the burger 4 out of 5 stars. Teddy’s may seem like some fast food place, but it’s much different than that. Teddy’s take a couple extra minutes because they make your burger to order, and they use 100% fresh chilled ground chunk (no fillers or binders). The fries at Teddy’s were decent and above average so they got a 3.25 out of 5 stars. They also had excellent Extra Thick Shakes in chocolate, strawberry, vanilla, peanut butter, root beer, dreamsicle, and pineapple that cost $5.29. The name, Extra Thick, doesn’t lie, the shakes are quite thick but very tasty, so they received an 4 out of 5 stars. Overall Teddy’s Bigger Burgers was an 3.75 out of 5 because their food was appetizing, filling, and very tasty.

A18 A&E

NOVEMBER 13, 2013

LH Film Review: GRAVITY By Claire Noack

TOP: Austin Berry, Amber Slater-Scott, Isaac Mcnutt, and Amy Ostrem, preform their closing song “Remember the Charleston” at West High on November 6th. KIERRA ZAPF/ THELITTLEHAWK

New director, Berry, leads 4th Avenue Jazz Company forward By Jacob Buatti

City High’s varsity show choir is going through a lot of changes. A new show, a new name, a new director, and a completely new way of doing things. After the retirement of Dr. Greg Grove last year, the show choir’s members knew there were going to be changes this year. Now, with the new director chosen Jim Berry and his wife, Ann Berry, have decided to make these changes. Firstly, everything was planned to the students’ other activities, minimizing the number of overlapping competitions or meets. Competitions are picked by the number of groups attending or even the size of the competition. Now, each competition is chosen to work with the schedules of the students. This means that students can be more in-

volved with speech, jazz band and other extracurricular activities. “When choosing competitions to go to, we had to look at the calendar to find which days didn’t conflict with jazz band or speech,” Berry said. “I think we’ve done a really good job at avoiding a lot of conflicts.” Secondly, the name, 4th Avenue Jazz Company has been shortened to 4th Avenue, or 4th Ave. Now, when the group is announced at competitions, their name is going to be much shorter. “The name change doesn’t really mean a lot,” Gretchen Burke 14’ said.“Our name may have changed for competitions, but to the choir kids and the people who know us, we’ll always be 4th Avenue Jazz Company.” The largest change is the structure. In the past, show choir practices and agendas have been very

loose. Now, each practice is scheduled, dividing the practice time into different segments. “I hope we can work on each piece as much as we need to,” Berry said. “I hope this will help our group improve as a whole.” The new songs will include a rendition of Round About and Everybody’s Everything, The choreographer’s original, Strange Attractions, the Rodgers & Hammerstein Ballad, Shine On Your Shoes, and another original written by the choreographer, Remember the Charleston. The show choir will perform in 7 different shows and competitions throughout the year. The members hope to win many awards and improve from last years show. “I can’t wait to start competing,” Madison Davenport, 15’ said. “Our show is going to be awesome once we’ve got the moves down.”

SINGING WITH SOUL: Elena Foster Grabs the audience’s attention during her solo in “Remember the Charleston. KIERRA ZAPF/ THELITTLEHAWK

There’s a lot of hype surrounding Oscar-winning director Alfonso Cuarón’s movie “Gravity.” Hype that in my opinion, isn’t all that well deserved. I walked into the theater with my popcorn in hand, ready to be amazed. I had seen the previews, and with two A-list actors like Sandra Bullock and George Clooney I wondered how I couldn’t absolutely love the movie. The plot of the movie is simple. Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) and Matthew Kowalsky, (George Clooney) are on a mission in space, when everything goes wrong. (I know, super surprising, right?) A collision between some Russian satellites causes a massive chain reaction, leaving a cloud of debris orbiting the Earth at breakneck speed. The rest of the movie is the two of them trying to survive and get back down to Earth. (I never would have guessed.) In the beginning, it was great. Watching people floating around with the knockout background of the Earth seen from space was wonderful. The view is one thing that I absolutely loved. I don’t think I could get tired of the shot where the sun is just starting to peek around the edge of the world. The ways in which the movie was filmed were excellent. With the constantly changing angles and point of view, it really looked and felt like you were in space. It was almost disorienting, the way I never knew what was actually up or down, which I’ll assume was exactly the point. The director actually had to invent the technology before the movie could be filmed. A groundbreaking system of LED panels, computer-controlled cameras, and complicated wirework was developed to realistically portray a zero-gravity environment. In addition, during the initial colliding, exploding, everything goes to hell scene, all sound was cut. I thought that it was a really good move by Cuarón, and really drew me in. However, as “Gravity” progressed, this cool technique was quickly given up on. Towards the end, even small bumps were given loud sounds. And that’s not my only problem with the movie. There are the basic flaws in the movie’s science, which astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson took to twitter to point out. Some of the mess-ups include the direction the debris is orbiting, as well as how space stations with several hundred miles of distance in between them are within sight lines of each other.

Read the rest of this review on

A19 A&E

Your local news & sports any way you want it!

NOVEMBER 13, 2013

A20 A&E

NOVEMBER 13, 2013

THE FOREIGNER brings big laughs

BLASMY BLASNY?The Foreigner’s run on October 24 - 26, 2013 was successful, receiving standing ovations for all three nights. Elijah Jones ‘14, Sam Rahn ‘14, Jacob Walterhouse ‘14, Jared Kilberger ‘15, Julia Beasley ‘15, Keegan O’Berry ‘16, and Genevieve Wisdom ‘17 brought The Foreigner to life after two months of rehearsals. . KIERRA ZAPF/ THELITTLEHAWK

The Little Hawk


November 13, 2013


‘IT’S WHERE I BELONG’ Playmaker Profile: Michaela Nelson

LEFT: Jaime Young ‘15 and Michaela Nelson ‘14 score on an assisted block in the Little Hawks match against Iowa City West in “The Battle for the Spike.” RIGHT: Michaela Nelson ‘14 tips the ball over the Linn Mar block during the 2013 season. KIERRA ZAPF and CORA BERN-KLUG/ THELITTLEHAWK

By Daniela Perret

As she readies herself into position, Michaela Nelson ‘14 squats almost halfway to the gym floor, launches herself into the air and in less than a second slaps the ball, sending it soaring over the net. Nelson is playing the game she loves, volleyball. “Volleyball is almost like a place to get away for me,” Nelson said. “It’s just something to do and have fun with and forget about things around me.” Nelson has been playing volleyball for the past nine years. Her older sister, Brittany Nelson, also started playing volleyball when she was younger which inspired Nelson to try the sport. “Probably growing up around volleyball got me interested in it,” Nelson said. “My sister’s practices always seemed so fun to me so they actually let me start practicing with them when they were in fifth grade and I was in first.” Nelson began playing club volleyball with the West Liberty Allstars in the second grade. She then joined the Iowa Rockets Volleyball Club in the fourth grade and has been playing with them up until this year. Nelson has also been apart of the varsity City High team since her freshman year. “When I made varsity my freshman year it was kind of intimidating because all the girls were so much bigger than me,” Nelson said. “But I ended up having a really good group of seniors so I had a really good season.”

With her Rockets team Nelson has travelled to numerous places across the U.S. for tournaments ranging from Miami to Atlanta, Denver and Minneapolis. “You get a lot better competition in those places because there’ll be teams from around the nation going to those tournaments instead of the normal state clubs around our area,” Nelson said. “It’s always a lot more fun to travel to other places and play volleyball there.” This past summer, Nelson and her Rockets team travelled to Dallas, Texas to compete in the Junior Olympics, a national tournament which her team ended up winning. “I was best friends with all those girls and had been playing with them for five years,” Nelson said. “So winning nationals with them is probably my favorite volleyball memory.” Nelson is planning on continuing her volleyball career in college. Next fall, she will be travelling to Colorado to play for the volleyball team at the University of Northern Colorado. “It’s so far away, but I’m really excited. I like it up there, I like the coaches and I like the difference between here and there. I think it’s going to be a lot more fun than Iowa,” Nelson said. “I really fell in love with their campus and their coaches up there when I visited.” Over the past nine years of her life, Nelson has made it clear that playing volleyball is a part of who she is. “When I step on the court I feel a lot more comfortable than I do in any other place,” Nelson said. “I feel like it’s where I belong.”

Q&A with Michaela Nelson Position: Outside Hitter

Favorite Song? Make it Nasty. That’s a good one.

Nicknames: Mac, Maclalala, Mclala, Macklmore or McNasty

Words to live by? With whatever you do have fun. Or live life to the fullest.

Favorite Class? Calculus with Mrs. Smirl because I love Mrs. Smirl. So much.

Pregame rituals? We take gameday pictures for Instagram.

Favorite food? Where do you see yourself in ten Marshmallows. I’m obsessed with years? Marshmallows. I do want to play sand volleyball, that’d be my dream job, to be a Favorite movie? professional sand volleyball player Probably Bridesmaids. in California or something. I’d love to be a beach bum. What could you not go a day without? Any Shout-outs? I don’t know...talking. I couldn’t Shoutsout to Mrs. Smirl. And be silent for a day. SmirlSquad.


NOVEMBER 13, 2013

Xavier ends City’s journey to state

After a 34-0 loss in Round Two of the IHSAA football playoffs, the Little Hawks look back on their 8-3 season. By Dominic Balestrieri-Fox

ABOVE: Jake Leohr ‘14 and Mitch Wieland ‘14 stand with The Boot in the minutes following the victory against their cross-town rivals. BOTTOM LEFT: Mack Stolley ‘14 holds The Boot with teammates on Bates Field. BOTTOM RIGHT: Bryson Runge ‘15 and Xavier Washpun ‘14 celebrate after the game. KIERRA ZAPF/ THELITTLEHAWK

After being named conference champions in the regular season, The Little Hawks’ road to state was cut short by a 34-0 loss against Cedar Rapids Xavier during round two of the IHSAA playoffs. They finished their season with a winning record of 8-3. “We were pretty disappointed,” Mack Stolley ‘14 said. “It’s hard to see your senior season come to an end.” The Little Hawks improved from last year’s record of 4-6; the 2012 football season was riddled with injuries that played a large role in the poor record. This past season has been for the most part unaffected by injury up until the very end, with only a handful of key players injured in the last five games. “Injuries affected us some,” Stolley said. “We hung together, and the next guys stepped up and did a great job.” Major varsity players injured this year were offensive tackle Luke Posivio ‘14 out with a MCL injury, offensive tackle Jake Keil ‘14 with a hamstring injury, and tight end/ punter Jake Leohr ‘14, out with a collarbone injury. City’s running game was a large part of the offense this season, with running back Xavier Washpun ‘14 being the ninth Little Hawk in City High history to break 2,000 yards career rushing as well as 30 total touchdowns scored by rushing. The Little Hawks saw success in their passing game as well, with over 1,000 total passing yards, the majority by quarterback Mitch Wieland ‘14. Kicker Drew Cornwell ‘14 broke the state record for most career points scored by a kicker, the new state best is 230 points. The Little Hawks started their

season with a 13-14 loss against Cedar Falls, but went largely undefeated throughout the rest of the regular season, the only other loss coming from the regular season closer against Cedar Rapids Kennedy, 14-35. A victory against cross-town rival Iowa City West during the regular season won the coveted Boot trophy back for City High, after West High won it in a 44-0 shutout during the 2012 season. City High beat rival West High this year 14-7, with an incomplete pass by Trojan quarterback Nate Boland as the factor preventing a second touchdown for West High. Offensive lineman Ben Sindt ‘15 feels that City got the job done well this year. “We came into the season with the goals of beating West and being conference champs, and we accomplished both of those goals,” he said. City High made it through round one of IHSAA playoffs with a 24-19 win against Muscatine, but the combined loss of both original starting tackles, a starting cornerback, and the starting tight-end combined with the threat of division champion Cedar Rapids Xavier proved too much for the Little Hawks, in a 34-0 shutout loss during round two of playoffs. The loss is nothing to be ashamed of, says Sindt. “They’re probably one of the best defenses that an Iowa high school team has ever had,” he said, “The loss was disappointing, but we had a great season.” With the 2013 season over, the preparation for 2014 will begin in a couple of weeks, and it can be expected that the low number of juniors out for football this year will cause an increased number of juniors to be on varsity next year. The sophomore team’s positive record of 5-4 is an improvement from their freshman record of 1-9, and is a promising prospect for the years to come.

NOVEMBER 13, 2013


Steroids: Not a high school phenomenon By Annika Wasson

Lance Armstrong. Alex Rodriguez. These are just a couple of professional athletes who have recently been penalized for using illegal performance enhancing drugs during competition. As more and more attention circles around the topic of steroids along with PED’s and their role in athletics, focus has now shifted to high school sports. With questions swirling about the relevance of illegal substances at this level, City High head football coach Dan Sabers says he does not believe these activities are taking place. “I certainly don’t have any evidence that it’s a problem in high school,” Sabers said. “I think there’s enough good products out there now that are safe and okay that most people realize if you do these pretty simple things you can get to where you want to be. I just don’t think the risk involved with steroids appeals to that many people.” Colton Brown ‘14 agrees. He says as a player he hasn’t seen any suspicious activities that would lead him to believe that his peers or his opponents are using steroids. “I would say that at the high school level it’s not really as big of a problem as it would be in the professional world,” Brown said. A survey issued by The Little Hawk shows these statements are mostly true. Thirteen students out of 78 polled said they had used steroids at some point in their life, mostly for medical reasons. Twenty-one percent responded they had used different types of supplements to assist


in gaining weight and muscle mass. Brown says he believes these supplements are more common than steroids among younger athletes. “There is a growing amount of people using supplements and there’s a lot of things in there that aren’t really studied or approved by the FDA,” he said. “If you go into one of the stores they’ll push it on you as an athlete. You just have to be smart about what you’re using.” High school students are not currently tested for illegal PED’s that may be in some of these supplements, but testing does begin when athletes reach the NCAA level. Sabers believes there is no reason to start testing high school athletes at this time. The City High football team stresses basic nutrition as opposed to supplements. Sabers says he pushes this concept as well as buying protein shakes for his players. “The human body is designed to excel, if we train it properly and use basic, solid, fundamental nutrition. I just love it, it’s a simple concept,” Sabers said. “I get my guys some shakes and things like that I think they’re very good products and certainly something I would recommend as well.” Proper nutrition, protein shakes and hydration have all helped the football team reduce injury and cramping this season. Brown says with these things, he sees no reason for people to resort to using steroids or illegal performance enhancing drugs. “At the end of the day your body is all you need,” Brown said. “Your body will do what you ask it to do if you take care of it right.”




NOVEMBER 13, 2013


ABOVE: Morgan Sammons ‘14 leads the Little Hawks at the beginning of the JV race at the final home meet of the 2013 season. JACOB BUATTI/ THELITTLEHAWK

Girls Cross Country

Injuries prevent top ten finish By Micah Cabbage

Boys Cross Country

Team not satisfied with finish at state meet By Keighley Ehmsen

On a cold Saturday, 115 class 4A cross country boys lined up to for the state race. A culmination of six months and hundreds of miles of training lead City High to finish in 14th place with the average time of 16:41.3. “We had a tough start to the season, we had individuals that were ineligible and some key injuries so the team didn’t really start gelling until mid to late season,” head coach Jayme Skay said. “That kind of caused some problems with the team cohesiveness and how well they worked together, and I think that affected our run at state.” Skay thought the team needed more time to prepare and work together as a group. “The last couple meets they were just starting to get

a sense of where they were competing,” Skay said. “We kind of needed another couple of weeks to gel more as a team.” The team was trying a method known as “pack running” to do well at districts and state. “Instead of everybody just running separate and doing the best they could, we started using a pack method where we’d all run together to pace ourselves until the last mile that everyone goes as hard as they can,” Rasheem Shivers ‘14 said. Chris Ohrt ‘14 was the leading runner for the Little Hawks at state and finished in 47th place with the time of 16:21.6. The next three runners finished within a second of each other coming in 67th, 68th, and 69th place. Jarrett Purdy ‘15 had the time of 16:45.0, Shivers coming in at 16:45.5, and Ryan Dorman ‘14 finished in fourth place for City High runners with the time of 16:45.6. Though Ohrt was the first City runner to finish the

race at state, he was not satisfied with how they placed. “I don’t think our finish at state really represents how good we were as a team. This is definitely the most balanced and consistent team I’ve been on,” Ohrt said. “Everybody’s [personal record] on varsity was under 17 minutes and that’s something I’ve never seen from our team before.” Last year City High boys cross country finished in tenth place. Though the team dropped four places this year, Skay is proud of his team. “In the 18 years I’ve been coaching the cross country program at City High I’ve never seen as tough of a state meet,” Skay said. “There were a large number of teams at state that had four or five great runners and it’s common to have one or two but to have four or five is really amazing. There were an unbelievable number of kids running times in the 15’s and it just gets tougher and tougher every year.”

TOP: The boys cross country team warms up for a home meet. BOTTOM: Chris Ohrt ‘14 runs for the finish line at the final home meet of the 2013 season. JACOB BUATTI/ THELITTLEHAWK

Filing onto the charter bus at the dark hour of five a.m. for the annual state meet, the groggy members of the City High girls cross country team’s heads were filled with questions. After placing third at districts, the team knew that they had their work cut out for them, but remained optimistic. The team ended up placing 13th out of a field of 15 teams, led by Molly Shepherd ‘13 in 21st place with a time of 14:59, almost a minute faster than she ran at the state meet a year before. “I don’t think that anyone is excited to finish 13th in the state,” Assistant Coach Thos Trefz said, “That aside though, I think a lot of our kids did run very good races. I think that Molly came a long way from where she was as a sophomore.” Also stepping up was Mary Arch ‘17 running in her first state meet and placing second for the team. She got 31st place with a time of 15:16. Closely behind Arch, was four year varsity member Ellen Carman ‘14, running with a major foot injury but still placing third for the team in 41st place overall. “Obviously for Ellen, running on a half-broken foot, and only running five days in the last month, placing that well was pretty incredible,” Trefz said.

The team knew coming into the state meet that they would not be competing for the top spot, considering all of the injuries that accumulated among runners over the season. The top three seniors of the team, Carman, Daniela Perret ‘14 and Morgan Sammons ‘14 were ridden with problems like anemia, stress reactions, and even a broken leg. But the team didn’t let that get in the way of their success. “I think having those runners healthy would have pushed us more to the top, to the other side of 10th place, but you know, it’s still a challenge to overcome and that’s what sports are about, adversity and making lemonade out of lemons and that kind of stuff,” Trefz said. The team indeed made lemonade and pushed through injuries and windy conditions to complete the race. “I don’t think there is anything I would have done differently to prepare for the meet,” Molly Shepherd ‘15 said. “The only thing that I would change is running more together as a team, in a tighter clump, that might have helped us.” Looking to the future, the team uses this as a learning example in hopes of breaking the top ten at next year’s state meet. “Our goals for next year I think are again to make it to state and achieve a higher team place,” Shepherd said. “I would personally like to place in the top 10 runners.”


Volleyball finishes season with close final In a year filled with injuries and lineup changes, the unranked Little Hawks ended their season with a 2-3 loss against No. 5 Urbandale in the Class 5A Regional Final. By Rachel Gralnek

After a 2-3 loss to Urbandale in the Regional Final, the Little Hawk volleyball team ended their 2013 season. The team has made it past many challenges throughout this unpredictable season, according to head coach Craig Pitcher. “With injuries and other things, it’s been a yo-yo type of a season,” Pitcher said. “We [were] on a little high part right after our win on Thursday [October 31].” The win against Southeast Polk, on October 31 in the Regional Semi-Final was a very important game for the team. “[The season so far has] been pretty good,” Michaela Nelson ‘14, said. “We have had our ups and downs, but we just won a big game that was important for the season.” The season ended when the team lost to Urbandale on November 5, denying the Little Hawks from taking a trip to the state tournament for the third straight year. “I wish we could’ve gone to state so we could all have more time as a team and to show everyone what this City High volleyball team could’ve accomplished,” Lillie Christopherson ‘15 said. City High was state runner ups last year, but this year the team is not in the top 10 teams for the state in class 5A. “We are not ranked right now. By our record, it is justified,” Pitcher said. “I think we compete easily with the top ten teams in the state we just haven’t had that signature win to include us with the top ten in the state.” The team did not get that win against Urbandale. They lost the match 25-20, 18-25, 21-25, 25-20, 12-15. In the fifth set, City High had a 11-9 lead until Urbandale won six more points. Nelson had 17 kills and 20 digs during the match. The team brought all the aspects of their game together in the Regional Final after injuries affected the team’s progress during the season. “[Injuries] have been a factor,” Nelson said. “[Injury] hasn’t been too great compared to last year but we lost Shannon [James ‘17] and a few others to things like concussions and [other injuries]. It makes a difference but its not as big of an effect as [last year].” Both Nelson and James were injured during the season. Nelson was out for a couple weeks at the beginning of the season and James was injured during the Battle of the Spike and was unable to return. “This is [Michaela’s] 4th year on varsity and Shannon came in very strong and both had key factors in being on the court all the way through,” Pitcher said. “When you take one of them off at a time, it affects where other players [are positioned].” Nelson thinks the team competed well while she was out from her injury. “[The team] held up pretty well, it ended up helping us as a team,” Nelson said. “Everyone grew from it, they all ended up better in the long run.” Pitcher agrees. “[Injury] affects the chemistry on the team, on the court and off the court,” said Pitcher. “Players have to learn to work with new people and take on new roles, so it affects [the team] more, I do believe volleyball is the ultimate team sport.” Christopherson says the line up changes were tough on the team at first, but they were able to exceed it. “We had players playing in places they’re not

NOVEMBER 13, 2013

Girls 200 medley relay breaks school record By Emilie Burden

The crowd goes crazy as Sharp nears the wall. Everyone in attendance, including the relay team members, wondered if the foursome was about to break the 12 year old record. Even though they ended the race in second place, it didn’t matter. The record set in 2001 for the 200 yard Medley Relay was broken by Alayna McCafferty ‘16, Lizzie Brown ‘15, Paris Sissel ‘17 and Alix Sharp ‘16. The record was 1:53.46 but the girls have obliterated that time with their own time of 1:52.16 at the MVC varsity meet on October 19th. “I was really happy,” McCafferty said. “I was watching Alix coming in, I looked up at the board and I thought we were going to have it.” Brown didn’t realize the record was broken since the race was so close. “We were all looking at the scoreboard to see if we had gotten first or second,” Brown said. “I kind of just realized like ‘oh my gosh we broke it.’” McCafferty gives a lot of the credit to Brown. “If we had any other breaststroker, we probably wouldn’t have made it,” McCafferty said. “She is seated first in the state right now for the 100 yard breaststroke.” The team is very excited to be competing at state this weekend and hope to do as well as they did at the MVC varsity meet or better. “I’m really looking forward to the atmosphere at state,” McCafferty said. “And being with the team one last time for the year.” The team competed at the state meet in Marshalltown this past weekend. For results, check

ABOVE: The 200 medley relay team of Alayna

McCafferty ‘16, Lizzie Brown ‘15, Paris Sissel ‘17 and Alix Sharp ‘16 recieves recognition after breaking the school record. JACOB BUATTI/ THELITTLEHAWK TOP: Rylee Price ‘15 takes a swing during Round One of the Regional tournament against Prairie. BOTTOM: Michaela Nelson ‘14 and Jaime Young ‘15 go up for a block. CORA BERN-KLUG/ THELITTLEHAWK

used to playing, but we overcame it as a team,” Christopherson said. Injury is not the only challenge the team overcame this season. “We haven’t been improving as much as we would have liked to, but we’re making it work,” Nelson said. Pitcher agrees the team struggled with making improvements during some parts of the season. “We hit plateaus where we don’t improve as

much as I thought we should,” Pitcher said. The team came together by the end of the season and finished on a five game winning streak. They attribute much of their success to the improvement in their team chemistry as the season progressed. “By the end of our season we were all so close and our team was like a family,” Christopherson said. “At the beginning of the season we were all like raw fruit and now were like a smoothie.”

For State Results visit

NOVEMBER 13, 2013



Rewriting the record books

ABOVE: Lizzie Brown ‘15 competes in the 100 meter breaststroke at the Regional Swim Meet. JACOB BUATTI/ THELITTLEHAWK

Despite being diagnosed with scoliosis, Lizzie Brown ‘15 is breaking school records and is the second fastest swimmer in the state. With a rigorous practice schedule, she and the rest of the swim team hope their hard work will pay off at state. By Jacob Buatti

Swimming is often thought of as a relaxing exercise that can keep injured athletes in shape and can be used for recovery, but members of the girls swim team are seeing the negative effects of this so called relaxing and rejuvenating sport. Girls swimming has long been one of the most rigorous practicing sports at City High, swimming about 19 hours a week along with extra hours of lifting weights, agility drills, and meets. In comparison, the most similarly working sport is the football team. Football practices 16 hours and 30 minutes a week and burns 544 calories per hour, almost 4 hours and 2785 calories less a week. In addition, swimming ranks the second highest school sport for average number of calories burned, only

topped by running. At 619 calories per hour and 19 hours of practicing a week, the swim team burns around 11,760 calories a week. At this rate, it’s no wonder why so many of the girls have injuries. Eight out of the 16 girls on the team have injuries that are either genetic or caused by swimming. But swimming isn’t helping their injuries, its making them worse. One of City High’s most successful female swimmers, Lizzie Brown ‘15, is pushing her limits in the pool. Brown has been diagnosed with scoliosis. Yet she has broken the school record for the 100 yard Breaststroke and the 200 yard Medley relay record with three other girls. She practices all year round and won’t let her condition hold her back. “Swimming is sometimes good for my back. It’s supposed to help my scoliosis by strengthening my

back muscles, but my joints are offcentered which makes me snap and bend weirdly,” Brown said. “Swimming is supposed to help, but swimming to the excess that I do sometimes, definitely doesn’t help.” As a kid, Brown swam during her summer breaks in Georgia. She took lessons, and then had months for an off season. It was only when Brown was a freshman at City High she decided to join the girls swim team and then the Iowa City Eels Swim Club and swim competitively. Now, she swims all year round and competes in meets against olympic swimmers. After only a year of swimming year-round, Lizzie broke the 100 yard breaststroke record as a sophomore. Now, in her junior year, she was was seeded the second fastest swimmer in the state before competing at the state meet last weekend. For state meet results, visit www.

LEFT: Paris Sissel ‘17 swims freestyle at the Regional meet on November 2 at Mercer Aquatic Center. ABOVE: Alix Sharp ‘16 waits on the block for her race to begin. JACOB BUATTI/ THELITTLEHAWK


NOVEMBER 13, 2013


By Emilie Burden

She stands at the end of the diving board staring at the water. “It’s just like gymnastics,” she tells herself as she gets ready to dive. This will be Cassie Birnbaum’s ‘17 first dive ever in a meet. “I was so nervous,” Birnbaum said reminiscing on her first dive. Competitive gymnastics has been part of Birnbaum’s life for nine years at the Iowa Gym-nest. She competes on the floor, bars, beam and vault. Birnbaum transitioned from gymnastics into diving this year with the help of her friends who did the same thing. She is now committed in both sports, but is the only diver on the City High swimming and diving team. “My friends and I in gymnastics decided as a group that we were going to [dive],” Birnbaum said. “But most of them go to West High so that didn’t work out too well.” But Birnbaum isn’t all alone. The West High divers get to dive with her for practice. Which makes it hard for her to be close with the City High swimming team. “She’s still part of the team,” captain Tegan Harty ‘14 said. “She’s a little distant but that just comes with being a diver and not always practicing with us.” Even though this is her first year, Birnbaum has been learning the dives quickly and improving fast, teammates have said. Gymnastics has helped her out according to coach Ivan Sanchez. “Being a gymnast has helped her a lot on her development,” he

said. “You do a lot of flips in gymnastics but you do a completely different thing with landing on your feet on a floor rather than landing on your hands in water.” There are five different categories of dives. Front dives are when the diver flips forward landing on their feet or head. Back dives are when they stand backwards and flip backwards. Twisters are when divers jump forward or backward and twist in mid-air. In reverse, they stand forward and flip backwards toward the board. Inwards they stand like they’re going to do a back jump but flip forwards towards the board. “I like the front one and a half dive,” Birnbaum said. Harty agrees that being a gymnast has helped Birnbaum. “Cassie has a good background being a gymnast,” Harty said. “The more she learns to connect those two, which will come with experience, she’s going to become a really good diver.” Harty is proud of how Birnbaum has begun her high school career as a diver. “She is really focused and dedicated to her dives,” Harty said. “She does really well.” Along with diving, Birnbaum swims when she’s needed. “Besides being a great diver,” Sanchez said. “She can also sprint a 50 and 100 free for us when we need her to.” Although her season is over for this year, she is already looking ahead to next season. “I’m hoping to go to regionals and state in the future,” Birnbaum said. “I’m looking forward to helping the older girls celebrate their senior years.”

The Little Hawk - 11.13.13  

Iowa City High School's Student Newspaper

The Little Hawk - 11.13.13  

Iowa City High School's Student Newspaper