Page 1 Northridge High School • 2901 Northridge Road • Tuscaloosa, Al• 35406

May 17, 2013 • Volume 10 • Issue 8

In the News

Anatomy students continue tradition

Seniors start new chapter of lives Rabisa Khan Copy Editor

Seniors are graduating and leaving the comfort of their high school to leap into the world of reality. College. Maddie Mayfield, senior, said she is “very ready” to leave high school. “High school is very tiring, and I can’t wait to leave,” Mayfield said. “However, the end of the year feels a lot shorter than the first half of the school year did.” Mayfield said she is “more excited than scared” about college. She committed to the University of Alabama. “It was relieving to pick a college, and plus, I plan on transferring after a year to somewhere in the North,” she said. Mayfield said she feels ready for the “big world.” “High school has made me very ready, and I can’t wait to go to college because it’s going to be easier,” she said. “I don’t have to wake up as early as in high school.” Dylan Smith, senior, said he is mostly happy to graduate, but “nervous about starting life fresh.”

“I don’t necessarily think high school alone has prepared me for college, but also all my other experiences during high school have too,” he said. Smith said he is planning on going to Brigham Young University (BYU) in Utah to “major in political science and minor in law.” “It was really hard at first as a junior to pick a college out of all my options,” Smith said. “Once I narrowed it down and had help from my parents, it made my decision a lot easier.” He said life will be easier because they will “have more time to study and not feel crammed every day.” Brandon Robb, senior, said he is attending the University of Alabama. He said he does not think high school has prepared him for college. “High school has just made me hate it, but I’m just looking forward to getting out of high school,” he said. Robb said he probably will not miss anything about high school except “possibly some teachers.” “In college I will go by my own rules and get to do everything on campus,” he said. “I also won’t be going to school seven hours a day for five days.” Robb said college will give him more time, and it will be less stressful.

Strickland wins YoungLife’s Assassins contest Abby Allen Staff Writer Wesley Strickland, senior, was ultimately announced the YoungLife Assassins champion. “My strategy was just to lay low and only kill when I had to,” Strickland said. Strickland’s final target was Kelsey McNeil,

senior. He waited outside of her car on a Saturday night and when she got out of her car he was armed and ready. “I was very surprised, I literally had no idea what was going on,” McNeil said. “I was in shock.” McNeil said she did not expect to make it this far, and she is glad it is finally over.

“I guess I had it coming to me; I wasn’t careful in the game at all,” McNeil said. “But still, it went on forever.” Winning did not come exceedingly easy for Strickland; he still faced some tough trials. “Escaping Katherine Duckworth’s surprise attack was the hardest challenge,” Strickland said. “But I won. I knew I would win.”

Jakailah Cooper Staff Writer About 15 years ago science teacher Beth Allaway came up with the idea of her human anatomy classes creating and presenting children’s books. “I wanted to give my students a way to teach little children in a concise way and to use their creative writing skills and art,” Allaway said. “Also, when we read books to children, it gives them a different feel. I haven’t published, but I have four students who have,” she said. “This year, since we have short periods, my classes can only read to Verner Elementary [students]. Over the years, we read to Rock Quarry Elementary students [also],” Allaway said. She said she thinks her students like being creative and reading their books to the kids. “They get really nervous the day of, but afterwards they are glad they did it; they are fabulous,” Allaway said.

Dance line to fade out gradually; replaced by majorettes Jared Lotfi Copy Editor Synchronized swaying bodies have sashayed in the stands of home football games since the school’s first year. This is about to change. Coach John Cain, who is in his fifth year of directing the marching band, said he is interested in developing a strong majorettes program and fading out dance line, but will keep the group installed for the following two school years for the dancers who are now juniors and sophomores. “Majorettes are more of a visual unit

that allows for more creative outlets besides dance and subsequently produces a greater spectacle,” Cain said. “If you look at schools throughout the Southeast, most bands tend to have quite large majorette groups, and we haven’t really offered that yet.” Tryouts for the fall were held on March 21. Cain said he hopes to add incoming freshmen to the group as well. Shantel Blair, junior, said she has danced since middle school and is glad the dance line will not be immediately dissolved. “It’ll be my senior year, and it’d be great to finish high school doing what I’ve en-

Tornado recovery Page 8

joyed doing. Just like basketball, different people have different talents, and you should be able to do what you’re good at. I don’t think it’s really fair; I grew to really enjoy it,” she said. Chemistry teacher Anna McEntire is the dance line coordinator and said the plan for dissolution was a result of stylistic tastes. “There was just a difference of opinions,” she said. “When we tried adjusting the aesthetics of our dance style there was some resistance. I wanted to put energy towards the field shows, and the girls wanted to concentrate on dances in the stands.”

Sashay Away: The dance line dances at the Northridge vs. Hillcrest game. They have been part of the band since the school opened.

Teachers retire Seniors Page 6 Page 7


2OurOpinion Thoughts

The Northridge Reporter May 17, 2013 Art by: KanJalla Dancer

The Northridge Reporter needs determined students

Where is everybody? End of the year-itis.


ewspapers have been a means of communicating with the public for centuries. Yet recently freedom of the press protected by the First Amendment has diminished, which makes it important for students to receive journalism education. Several days ago The Washington Post reported the Justice Department secretly obtained two months’ worth of telephone records of journalists working for the Associated Press. Students need to learn the value of a free press and reporter’s rights. Journalism students learn how a free and responsible press can improve their school by informing, entertaining and influencing their audience. Though journalism is striving, printed newspapers are in decline. From major papers worldwide to local papers like The Birmingham News, and now even The Northridge Reporter, newspapers are cutting back. As our world becomes more technologically advanced and devicedependent, people rely more and more on online sources for information. The Northridge Reporter has developed an online presence, including a Facebook fan page, and is striving to improve its online newspaper. People have forgotten the importance of our newspaper. It stands as a representation of our school and serves to reflect the student body and faculty of Northridge. It gives students a voice and a vehicle to bring about positive change at school. People fail to realize the opportunities journalism provides its students. Our staff has won numerous prestigious awards at state and national levels. This allows journalism students to have impressive resumes for college and work. Journalism is not for the lighthearted. It takes hard work and determination, and it teaches students how to deal with real life situations. Journalism students learn to work independently, do intelligent research and collaborate. They learn good communication skills, critical thinking, and computer and writing skills. Evidence shows that journalism students get better ACT scores and grades and are better writers when they go to college. Journalism students have the freedom to write about issues that are important to them and have opportunities to travel and meet students from other places. Colleges recognize the rigor in journalism classes and reward students who do well in journalism. If students disregard the importance of our school newspaper and fail to commit, The Northridge Reporter will cease to exist, and the voice of our students will go down with it. agree (18) disagree (0) Like The Northridge Reporter on Facebook

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Your Thoughts

Students disregard hygiene at school Dear Editor, Our school is disgusting. Yes, I actually did just say that. And the blame lies with everyone. The blame lies with students who treat the school as their personal landfill. It lies with the custodians who apparently don’t grasp the concept of public hygiene. And it lies with our school administrators who oversee this mess and turn a blind eye. A typical horror story: I walk into a bathroom, and the first thing that hits me on many an occasion is the foul smell of marijuana. Then I notice the partitions between the stalls are rusting. I walk up to a toilet, and it’s covered with toilet paper and obscenities I’m probably not allowed to describe. By the way, has anyone ever heard of this thing you do called flushing? I back away, filled with revulsion and dread. The floor is sticky and encrusted with dirt. My shoes have had so much exposure to this type of environment I frequently wash my hands after touching them. Now for the sink. Great. One of the faucets doesn’t work. Sighing, I reach for some soap, only to find, for the umpteenth

time, it’s not there. Just what I need during cold and flu season. When I dry my hands, the paper towels are a) not there, or b) torn into pieces of varying lengths, scattered around the sink or floor. After this experience, I gratefully rush off to class. The bathroom is not the only place where this type of general offensiveness occurs. It occurs in the gym and field house locker rooms; it occurs in the papers and bags stuffed in that crack in the wall backstage in the auditorium; it occurs in the trash blowing through the courtyard; it occurs in the mysteriously stained ceiling tiles, to name a few out of many places. I won’t name the thing myself and some others discovered in practice room C. Suffice to say, it had been used, and it wasn’t a

James Niller

Kleenex. This is not your typical gumunder-the seat problem, although there’s even too much of that for my liking. No, this is a serious issue that must be addressed. This culture of filth at our school is depressing, tasteless, counterproductive to a learning environment, physically unhealthy, and certainly does not enhance our reputation. Other schools manage to keep clean, so why is keeping clean so impossible for us? Northridge needs a wake-up call about the state of its appearance, and believe me, it’s about time.

Journalist of the Year 2013 • Bailey Thomson Award for Editorial Writing 2013 • Rick Bragg Feature Writing Award 2009 • NSPA 6th Place Best of Show 2013 • NSPA 5th Place Best of Show 2012 • NSPA 1st Place Best of Show 2011 • NSPA 5th Place Best of Show 2008 • NSPA 8th Place Best of Show 2008 • NSPA 9th Place Best of Show 2006 • CSPA Gold Medalist 2005-2011 • SIPA All-Southern 2003, 2005–2012 • ASPA AllAlabama 2003–2011 • NSPA All-American 2004, 2008, 2011 • Best SIPA Newspaper in Alabama 2003–2007 • NSPA News Story of the Year 2005 • SIPA First Place News Story 2007• SIPA First Place Review 2009

Northridge High School • 2901 Northridge Road • Tuscaloosa, AL 35406 • (205) 759-3734 ext. 295 *Denotes state, regional and national award winners Editor-in-Chief Entertainment Editor Copy Editor Business Manager Web Master *Alex Hauser *Raiha Bajwa *Kelly Burnham, Rabisa Khan, *Jared Lotfi *Raiha Bajwa Victoria Love Managing Editor Sports Editor Infographics Editor Photographers Twitter Editor *Raiha Bajwa *Kelly Burnham Jakailah Cooper *Morgan DeWitt,, *Jared Lotfi Abby Allen Feature Editor Opinion Editor Art Editor Staff Facebook Editor *Renu Pandit *Raiha Bajwa *KanJalla Dancer Jordan Hutchinson, Charlyndria *Kelly Burnham News Editor Beat Editor Artists Nelson, Savren Nelson, Kayla Adviser *Kelly Burnham *Morgan DeWitt CheQuita Burrell, *Katie Poore Pate, Tyler Davis *Susan Newell Editorial Policy: The opinions in The Northridge Reporter are those of the students and not of the faculty or administration of Northridge High School or the Tuscaloosa City Board of Education. It is the policy of The Northridge Reporter to publish all non-obscene, non-libelous, signed letters to the editor, regardless of the opinion expressed in them. Letters must be submitted to Susan Newell in room 109 or emailed to

The Northridge Reporter reserves the right to edit letters and verify allegations. The newspaper is distributed monthly. Tuscaloosa City Board Policy: It is the official policy of the Tuscaloosa City Board of Education that no person shall, on the grounds of race, color, disability, sex, religion, national origin, age or creed, be excluded for participation in, be denied the benefits of or be subject to discrimination under any program, activity or employment.

Advertising & Subscriptions: Contact The Northridge Reporter Staff at (205) 759-3734 ext. 235 or snewell@tusc. to advertise in or subscribe to The Northridge Reporter. School population Students: 1238 Faculty and staff: 90



The Northridge Reporter May 17, 2013

Capstone Woodwind Quintet performs for band “Remember that when it comes to your dreams, you decide whether you’ll be successful or not, walk that road.” Skip Snead Jared Lotfi Copy Editor


Photo by MCT Campus

Sing it: John Mayer performs at the Palace of Auburn Hills in Auburn Hills, Michigan on Friday, February 12, 2010. Lainey Hatfield, sophomore attended the concert at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater on April 25th. “He is an amazing song writer, vocalist, guitar player, and performer,” she said. “I’ve listened to him as long as I can remember.”

John Mayer plays in Tuscaloosa Savren Nelson Staff Writer


e has the looks, voice, dating record and talent. He is John Mayer. Mayer came to the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater, Thursday April 25 at 7 p.m. His opening act, St. Paul and the Broken Bones, was cool and had killer dance moves. St. Paul should have paid more attention during sound check though. It was so loud, I could not understand him when he hit his high notes. I feel I would have enjoyed his music if it had been softer. I would buy his CD or song on iTunes. John Mayer came out in worn out jeans, a white T-shirt, and a denim jacket. He topped off his look with a fedora.

Mayer started off the concert with “Queen of California.” He then sang “Something Like Olivia,” “Who Says,” “Got My Mojo Working,” “Slow Dancing in a Burning Room,” “Goin’ Down the Road Feeling Bad,” “Love is a Verb,” “Speak For Me,” “Can’t Find My Way Home,” “Waiting On the World To Change,” “Why Georgia,” “Whiskey, Whiskey, Whiskey,” and “If I Ever get Around to Living.” Mayer did not talk as much as he usually does in his other performances, saying “the music would only start playing three minutes and 22 seconds into the video.” I personally do not mind if John Mayer talks. The concert was fantastic, and Mayer did not miss a beat or note the whole night. Everybody danced, sang along, and joked with each other. If you ever get the chance to see John Mayer live, take the chance.

Students place in annual talent show Morgan DeWitt Beat Editor SGA hosted its annual talent show in the auditorium on Thursday, April 25. The show was emceed by seniors Vyt Puzinauskas and Jamel Smith and included 12 acts. Door prizes were also given out to the audience. Prizes included a $50 gas card, a Taco Casa gift card, a Sweet CeCe’s gift card, a Chick-Fil-A gift basket, imported coffee beans, etc.

Seniors Jared Lotfi, Jameson Hubbard and Nick Motz received third place. The trio performed as a folk band. They were awarded a $25 Visa Gift Card. Junior James Roberts got second place with his impressions of famous people. He received a $50 Visa Gift Card. First place winners Demario Plott, sophomore, and Jayelisa Little, senior, took first place with their rendition of “Someone Like You” by Adele. They received a

$100 Visa Gift Card. Plott said when he heard he and Little won his “soul was on fire.” “I was a little upset when they pronounced my name wrong, but when I found out we won I was ecstatic and overjoyed,” Plott said. Little said she and Plott put a lot of work into preparing for the show. “We practiced the song almost every day,” Little said. “We practiced our parts and made sure all of our harmonies matched.”

Little said she didn’t participate in the talent show to win. “It was all about enjoying the experience for me,” Little said. Shantell Blair, junior, sang “Confetti” by Tori Kelly. She said she had stage fright before she performed, but she tried to relax. Blair said her advice to upcoming talent show contestants is to “practice, practice, practice.” “You have to face your fears and step outside of your comfort zone,” Blair said.

Senior participates in Family Feud game show Jakailah Cooper Staff Writer While some families fight on a regular basis, the Mays participate in a different kind of feud. DeAnthony Mays, senior, signed up for the hit game show Family Feud. “My father and I were watching the show, and we just started to answer with the people on the show,” he said. Mays said he thinks his family will get picked because “we are a dominant family.” “I believe that we have potential to go to the show and win if we get picked for the show,”

he said. Mays said having the experience would be a lifetime experience. “I think it would be fun and also educational to test the mind and for us to experience the show,” he said. “Also, we get to meet Steve Harvey.” Anthony Mays (father), Kimberly Mays (step-mother), Felicia Mays (aunt), and Fabrina Brown (cousin), will be participating with him on the show. “I like the show because it challenges the mind to think and process in a certain amount of time,” he said. “I think that my family will do well because

we have the mind set to put our minds together to put the answers on the board to beat the other families and to have fun,” Mays said. I’m excited to go on TV because we get to meet Steve Harvey, get money and this is a chance to bring our family closer, he said. His family traveled to Atlanta on May 4 to film the show, but Mays said he did not know when it will be aired. He could not reveal anything about the filming. Junior Kayla McEwen said DeAnthony and his family are very smart and capable of winning the show. “I feel that it a great chance for him to show people how smart he really is,” she said.

he Capstone Woodwind Quintet put on a performance for Coach Cain’s fourth period concert band class on April 3. Dr. Osiris Molena (clarinet), Dr. Jenny Mann (bassoon), Professor Skip Snead (horn), Professor Shelly Meggison (oboe), Dr. Diane Schultz (flute), and Dr. Jon Noffsinger (saxophone) played several classical pieces and one jazz tune. All the musicians shared their stories and provided tips for the young performers. “We rehearse together once a week for an hour and a half or more as needed,” Shultz said, “but that’s only after we’ve prepared sufficiently on an individual basis.” Snead said while there is a huge amount of talent to compete with, talent isn’t the be-allend-all in the musical world. “We all started where you’re sitting,” Snead said. “You’ll need to ask yourselves if you really love what you’re doing and make sure you’re committed to it. In the end, talent isn’t everything - passion and love is the bottom line. Every one of us practices for hours, with an “s”, every day and that’s what makes all the difference for our sound.” Taking and finding chances in addition to cultivating a practiced sound is also important, Meggison said. “You have to be entrepreneurial and create as many opportunities for yourself as possible,” she said. Senior Jameson Hubbard said he greatly enjoyed the group’s synchronization. “The instrumentation was profound,” he said. “You could tell they had years and years of experience under their belts.” All students interested in music were encouraged to visit www. for more information on summer music camps offered through the university. “If you truly want to pursue music for performance or teaching, be aware that it is extremely competitive out there,” Snead said. “Remember that when it comes to your dreams, you decide whether you’ll be successful or not, walk that road.”



The Northridge Reporter May 17, 2013

Brown cultures similar yet unique

ranged marriages, my parents married out of love. Race isn’t a restriction, the love of my life is Beyoncé,” Agrawal said. Agrawal said he would recommend the book Life of Pi There are many shades of brown. to “those eager to learn more about the Indian culture.” Paaras Agrawal, senior, said he’s the Indian kind. Joseph Mohabbat, sophomore, said he is both Aryan and “I’ve lived in America all my life, but I’ve been to India Afghan. a couple of times before,” Agraw“Culture plays a giant role,” Moal said. “We usually go for a few habbat said. “People in my culture weeks to visit family members.” take a lot of pride in where they Agrawal said his culture “plays came from, and it’s more familyWe put a lot of emphasis on family vala pretty solid role” in his life. oriented.” “We put a lot of emphasis on ues. Family is all, familia es todo, Mohabbat said he is proud of family values,” Agrawal said. Paaras Agrawal, senior his culture, and that it makes him “Family is all, familia es todo.” “feel more unique.” He said his parents tried to in“My parents try to incorporate corporate as much culture into his culture into my life by taking me childhood as possible by “speakto Afghan gatherings,” Mohabbat ing Hindi around the house.” said. “There aren’t enough Afghans in Alabama to have “I feel like it’s a good skill to know a second language in them here, but there are some in other states. I try to attend the emerging new world,” Agrawal said. if I can.” Agrawal said that because he is Indian, everyone asMohabbat said the main thing his parents try to teach sumes he is going to be a doctor or engineer. him is to “not drift out of the culture.” “Which is exactly what I’m going to do,” he said. Nimra Khan, freshman, said she is of Pakistani origin. Agrawal said a lot of Indians are vegetarians, but for “I used to go to Pakistan every year when I was young, him it was “more of a personal preference than a cultural but the last time I went was in 2010 for a wedding,” Nimra restriction.” said. “There are a lot of misconceptions about the Indian culNimra said her culture plays a large role in her life “beture,” Agrawal said. “For instance, not everyone has arRenu Pandit Feature Editor

cause outside of school I’m usually always with my family, and they almost constantly express those values that come with the culture.” “The Pakistani culture is different from the American culture in that it is more traditional on the basis of how you act and what you wear,” Nimra said. She said she has grown up in America, but still gets exposed to her culture by “constantly being surrounded by family and attending Pakistani gatherings and occasions.” Shafqat Khan, Nimra’s mother, said she taught her daughters how to speak Urdu and read Arabic at a young age. “They are accomplished girls,” Shafqat said. “They can read the whole Quran.” Shafqat said she has been living in the United States with her family for “over eighteen years.” “The U.S. is very different from Pakistan,” Shafqat said. “It’s full of opportunities.” Shafqat said that although she likes for her daughters to be culturally diverse, she does not want them to lose sight of their roots.

German students compare cultures Morgan DeWitt Beat Editor

With a culture as unique as the country itself, German students at Northridge find a way to keep in touch with their German roots, even whilst completely immersed in American culture. Katrina Struthwolf, junior, and her younger sister Annika, freshman, are from Germany. The sisters said they have grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins who live in Stuttgart, Germany. “We visit every summer for about five weeks,” Katrina said. Alex Meinert, junior, moved from Germany with his family nine years ago. “My family and I moved to the U.S. because there are a lot more job opportunities here for my parents. We didn’t come here with Mercedes Benz like most of the Germans that live here in Tuscaloosa,” Meinert said. Germany and America are very different, and Katrina said one of the most striking differences lies in the set-up of the cities. “If you look at a map you can easily tell an American city from a German city. There are more small towns and villages in Germany,” Katrina said. Meinert said German schools are much harder than American schools. “The educational standards are set much higher,” Meinert said. “The kids have to do a lot more school work than we have to do here in the U.S.” Meinert said the national sport of Germany is different from America’s. “The main sport in Germany is fussball (soccer), where in the U.S. the main sport is American football,” Meinert said. Annika said although Germany and America are very different, they both share certain American culture points, especially in the entertainment industry. “There is no specific genre of music for Germany. They listen to the same music as Americans,” Annika said, “All the movies are the same as well, except translated into German.” The German culture has a wide variety of European food influences. Annika said a popular German food is bratwurst, a type of sausage. “My favorite food would have to be spaetzle, which is like a cheesy pasta,” Annika said. “It’s similar to macaroni and cheese but it has different noodles.” Meinert said Germans, a traditionally healthy group of people, have begun to adopt American habits. “[Germans] have started to eat more and more fast foods like McDonalds, which is an American thing,” Meinert said. Katrina said the weight of the meals Germans eat throughout the day differs from Americans’ daily meals. “They usually eat a hot meal at lunch and a light supper, which is opposite from what Americans do,” Katrina said. Germany is located in Western-Central Europe, an entirely different climate than the United States. Katrina said she thinks the German weather is enjoyable.

“It gets really hot in the summer, but it’s not nearly as humid, so it’s more enjoyable,” Katrina said, “It gets very cold and snowy in the winter.” A different climate can create variations between German fashion and American fashion. Katrina said a German wardrobe consists of more fitted clothing. “They dress cute for almost everything, and it’s just like normal clothes for them. The T-shirts and athletic shorts that we wear all the time in America are only for working out in Germany,” Katrina said. Meinert said German fashion is comparable to what Americans in big cities, such as New York, wear. “Most people wear jeans, T-shirts, jackets and a lot of fussball jerseys. The people also dress a lot warmer since it gets really cold,” Meinert said. Annika said that German people “are all hipsters.” “They wear ‘Quicksilver’ which is like a hipster-skateboard brand,” Annika said. “All the guys wear V-necks.” Meinert said Germans have outgoing personalities to match their open-minded fashion senses. “One major personality difference is that German people speak their minds more openly about a lot of things and tend not to care what someone else thinks about them,” Meinert said. When completely immersed in American culture, it can be hard for German students to keep up with practices from their roots. The Struthwolf sisters said their family keeps the culture alive in their home. “We speak and even text in German,” Katrina said, “My mom makes German dinners.” “My mom makes maultaschen, which is a soup with ravioli-like pockets stuffed with meat,” Annika said. Annika said she prefers living in America to living in Germany. “I would rather be in Germany, but I wouldn’t want to permanently live there. The United States is my home,” Annika said. Meinert said even though he grew up in Germany, the United States is where he prefers to be. “I prefer to live in the US instead of Germany. The weather is much nicer and school is much easier to handle,” Meinert said. Katrina said she loves to visit Germany, and her heart belongs to both the German and American culture. “I love Germany, and I would love to live there, but I would miss my friends and the American culture,” Katrina said. “America is my home and Germany is my favorite home-away-from-home. I wouldn’t want to be doing anything other than traveling between the two.”


The Northridge Reporter May 17, 2013

What languages can you speak? Hindi/Urdu



























=African American

65 students polled. Information compiled by Renu Pandit. Designed by Renu Pandit. Images from MCT Campus.

Korean maintains roots

Raiha Bajwa Opinion Editor

Jane Yu, senior, moved to the United States from Korea in 2007. While living in America, Yu’s family visits Korea every summer to keep in touch with family. Her family also attends a Korean church. “I wouldn’t know if there is a big difference in my church and other churches because I have never been to an American church,” she said. “But I don’t think there is any difference except for the fact that people are Korean.” Yu said one of the most obvious differences between Korea and America is the language. “I still speak Korean at home and my computer, Facebook, and phone are set to Korean,” she said. “It really surprises my friends when they use my stuff or when they go on my Facebook wall.”

Yu’s Mother, Heuijeon Kwak Yu, said they get to see the best of both worlds. “I miss Korea a lot, but we still go back all the time,” she said. “Living here has given us a lot of opportunities.” Yu said one of the things she misses the most is being able to walk everywhere. “In Korea I can walk to the beach, the movie theatre, restaurants, malls... everywhere,” Yu said. “I didn’t need a car to get to places over there, but over here everything is so spread out.” Yu said since she does not have a car here, she finds it harder to go out. “I miss almost everything about Korea because I have more freedom there than here,” she said. As a Korean, Yu said that there are a lot of stereotypes for her. “People always expect us to be really good at math and be smart,” she said. “It’s really stupid.” Sarah Cassel, senior, is friends with Yu and said she enjoys learning about the culture. “They have really good food,” Cassel said. “I love Korean food.”

Latin American culture is vibrant, delicious He said his parents make traditional foods as well. “They make enchiladas and different types of soup that I do not enjoy,” Galindo said. Garcia learned Spanish first, and when speaking to peoLatin America is a place full of passion, good food and ple who are Hispanic or his family, he said he prefers his rich heritage. first language. Jesus Garcia, freshman, “It is just more comfortable to speak is Hispanic and says his dad the language I learned first,” Garcia said. moved to America about Galindo is different in that he prefers twenty-five years ago. His In the Amazon, there are no roads or to speak his second language instead of mother moved about twenty cars. Everyone has to travel by river, his first language. years ago. Casey Medlock, Spanish teacher “I learned Spanish first, but I prefer to “My dad moved here, then speak English because everyone around left and married my mom me speaks English,” Galindo said. and then moved here and Shelby Castellanos, freshman, is from has stayed here since,” Jesus Guatemala and her family moved here in said. 1999. Castellanos’ family makes a traditional food called Jesus said his parents make traditional foods such as entamales. chiladas and different types of soups. “We use a seed called a pepita which is used to spice up Freshman Isaac Galindo’s family moved from Mexico the tamales,” Castellanos said. to the U.S in 1990. Jordan Hutchinson Staff Writer

Castellanos’ family celebrates traditional holidays like Semana Santa, which is “Holy Week.” Castellanos knows Spanish but prefers to speak her first language, which is English. “It helps me communicate better,” Castellanos said. Spanish teacher Casey Medlock has traveled to Peru and the Amazon rainforest. “In the Amazon, there are no roads or cars. Everyone has to travel by river,” Medlock said. The people of the Amazon do not drink from a faucet Medlock said. “The people drink from buckets filled with water from the river that is not clean,” Medlock said. Since the Amazonians speak indigenous languages and not Spanish, it was hard for Medlock to speak to the natives. “There was no way to communicate with them through language,” Medlock said. “Speaking was easier in larger cities in Peru because they spoke Spanish like I did,” Medlock said.



The Northridge Reporter May 17, 2013

Two years pass after tornado, students still remember Victoria Love Web Master

It has been two years since a tornado ripped through Alabama on April 27, 2011, changing the lives of everyone. The tornado reached almost a mile wide and swept across Alabama, destroying homes, lives and leaving dozens dead and hundreds injured. The death toll reached 58, according to a Tuscaloosa News article in 2011. Tuscaloosa was left devastated and torn apart, but the city came together to rebuild and grow to move past this day. Tuscaloosa has rebuilt several of the business that were destroyed, including Krispy Kreme, Hobby Lobby and Hokkaido, and is continuing to move past this day. Diamanise Sidberry, sophomore, remembers the day the tornado hit and what came after it. “It was in the afternoon, and it was rainy; I remember we didn’t go to school that day. Then we heard these sirens, but we couldn’t see anything,” Sidberry said. Sidberry’s house had minor damage, with just a few windows broken. They went without power for a week and because of a downed power line blocking the road, they could not leave for a week. When they finally did get the chance to leave,

her family stayed with a family friend. Months later, Sidberry’s family moved out of the house after no improvements to her neighborhood were made. Sidberry said she thinks the city did not do all they could to help people, and that they should of made more improvements. “I think they did a good job helping out people with businesses, but not a good job with helping people with their homes,” Sidberry said. Loren Ledbetter, sophomore, was not in town at the time of the tornado, but she was also affected. Ledbetter’s church was completely destroyed and still has not been rebuilt. Ledbetter said that she does not think enough has been done to help rebuild. Senior Donovan Pate also remembers the tornado. He and his family were at home, about a mile away from the tornado. He went to go outside to watch it while his family went to the hallway to take cover from it. Tuscaloosa continues to rebuild and improve the city after the tornado. A new shopping and apartment complex is being built in the area that used to hold Hobby Lobby, Tuesday Morning and several other businesses. Sidberry said she wants people to move past this day and, “It’s time to forget about it.”

Photo by: Jared Lotfi

Hot Now: The new Krispy Kreme stands in the same space as the previous one. It reopened on August 21, 2012.

Photo by: Jared Lotfi

Shops: The Lofts of City Center are being built where Wood Square Shopping Center was before the tornado. Along with student housing, the Lofts will have spaces for retail and restaurants and possibly a hotel. See

Beemer leaves to travel the world Stephens retires after 30 years Kelly Caroline Burnham News Editor

Marilyn Stephens, AP science teacher, announced her retirement at the end of this academic year after teaching close to 30 years. “I have mixed emotions about retirement,” she said. “On one hand, I’m ecstatic, but on the other hand, I’m apprehensive.” Stephens plans to spend more time with her grandchildren and explore her more artistic side with activities such as painting and crocheting. “Northridge is the best school in Alabama, and it’s been a privilege to teach here,” she said. Don McNabb, health teacher, said he taught alongside Stephens for about 25 years. “Back in the day at old County High, her room was the gathering place for all the ‘young’ teachers to drink a cup of coffee in the morning and solve all the world’s problems.”

Katie Poore Staff Writer

“I don’t Instead of teaching next year, French think she has teacher Barbara Beemer said she will be changed a bit, traveling and spending time with her and she can family. still solve all After 30 years of teaching, the world’s problems,” Beemer has decided to retire. McNabb said. “My husband has Boping Kang, a junior in been retired for three Stephens’ AP Chemistry class, years,” Beemer said. said that she will miss Stephens Beemer said when she retires. she “will be “She makes our AP Chemistry class taking a cruise very fun, but at the same time very chalin the Mediterlenging,” she said. ranean in the Kang said she hopes Stephens will return fall.” next year to see her past students. Beth Holliman, classroom teacher, is also retiring. English teacher Quincy Collins is moving to a Hoover middle school to become an assistant principal, and Counselor Jackie Hudgins will go to Northside High School.

Trip to Spain possible for students in 2014 Jared Lotfi Copy Editor

seemed right that Spanish students would also have a travel opportunity, so I decided to seek one out,” she said. Michael Gamble, junior, said he is skepStudents taking Spanish now have the opportunity to travel to Costa Rica in June tical about the $2,500 price tag. “I don’t think everyone will be able to 2014. Spanish teacher Casey Medlock struck a raise the money required,” he said. The trip, featuring a one day extension, deal with EF Tours, the same organization used by French teacher Barbara Beemer will take students through the capital of San Jose, kayaking on Lake Arenal, and whitefor the summer trips to France. “Since the French class had a trip, it water rafting on the Sarapiqui River.

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“I’m going to France in June with students and parents, and I want to do other traveling and spend more time with my grandchildren,” she said. Beemer said she “may do some volunteer work” as well. Kelilah Anders will be replacing Beemer. Anders completed her teaching internship at the school this semester and will be returning next year full-time. Heather Benjamin, sophomore and French II student, said she thinks Anders will be a good replacement. “We’re all used to her. It’s not some random person we don’t know coming in, and she does the same stuff as Mrs. Beemer, so it won’t be much of a change,” Benjamin said.

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The Northridge Reporter May 17, 2013

Rain, rain, go away Powder Puff game scheduled to watery day Rabisa Khan Copy Editor The annual Powder Puff football game was originally scheduled for April 19, but was cancelled due to rain. It was rescheduled for May 3. Even though it rained on May 3, the Powder Puff game still continued. SGA sponsor, Kathleen Oatts, who is in charge of the Powder Puff game, said on May 3 that she was waiting to see if she should cancel the game. “Right now I’m waiting until 3:28 p.m., and then we can decide what to do with this game,” Oatts said. She said her seniors were the ones who prepared the whole game. “All my seniors are out today because of Honor’s day,” Oatts said. SGA member Anna Laura Killian participated in the Powder Puff game on the junior team.

“If it rains again today [May 3], then we will just have to reschedule the game again. This time for May 11,” Killian said before the game. She said May 11 is also the day for her tennis banquet. “Several junior girls playing in the Powder Puff game may not be able to attend the game because of the banquet,” Killian said. “I’ll probably be mad if this game gets cancelled for a second time now.” Now we know the game was not cancelled, but it was also “not finished,” Andrea Jaimes, sophomore in SGA, said. “We didn’t cancel the Powder Puff football game because we didn’t expect it to rain that hard,” Jaimes said. She said watching the game in the cold rain was “very uncomfortable.” “Some players were falling, and you could tell they

were freezing,” she said. Jaimes said only the juniors and sophomores game was completed and “the juniors won by default because it started raining.” “The freshmen and senior game lasted only five minutes before they decided to cancel the game,” she said. Jaimes said throughout the whole game she could tell “Ms. Oatts was really stressed out.” Sophomore Katie Hauser played in the Powder Puff game. “It was cold, but at some times it was fun because the rain made it more intense,” Hauser said. She said she wished they would have rescheduled the game. “It wouldn’t be as cold, and it’d be more fun. Also more people would have showed up,” Hauser said. “The hardest part was you couldn’t see anything.”

Soccer teams’ passion goes beyond the field Morgan DeWitt Beat Editor The soccer team is as close as a family, and their closeness reflects on their playing as a team. “We are family,” Abby Horn, senior, said. “All my soccer teammates and me.” The girls soccer team went 16-3-1 this season, and the boys went 17-3. Lee Almond, sophomore, said the team is “very close-knit.” “We hang out at each other’s houses,” Almond said. “We have team dinners a lot.” Amanda Baker, junior, said the team likes to go out to eat and watch movies together. “We’re never bored. We’re all friends,” Baker said. Cooper Herrington, sophomore, said the team does everything together both outside and inside school. “We have passionate love for each other,” Herrington said. “Deep, passionate love.”

In their free time, Herrington said the soccer team likes to “watch movies, knit sweaters and hang out.” Sophomore Ryan Nichols said he thinks the team has good chemistry. “We don’t take offense to anything our teammates say,” Nichols said. “It’s all constructive criticism.” Baker said she thinks the team’s closeness helps them play better on the field. “The closeness motivates me,” Baker said. “It makes me want to do well for the team rather than just for myself!” Kyle Anderson, senior, said the upperclassmen and underclassmen have an older brother, older sister relationship. “Soccer is not a sport where one star athlete makes a team. Luckily, we have a whole team of star players,” he said. “Our closeness this season was a big part of our success. We are like a family in that we know we need everyone to work together to succeed. Going into any match it’s us against them. We’re all close, and we trust each other.”

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Gordon C. Bryars Harvey A. Edwards Stephen E. Allen Myron S. Chwe

Elizabeth C. Emig J. Sid Smith Thomas A. Rosenstiel Joanne C. Myers

Girls Soccer

S e a s on Re c ord: 16-3-1 Hillcrest: 10-0

Hillcrest: 10-0

Holy Spirit: 9-0

Holy Spirit: 7-0

County High: 1-1 Brewbaker Tech: 7-0 County High: 6-0

Robertsdale: 4-0

Hillcrest: 6-0

Gulf Shores: 4-0

Hoover: 0-3

Paul Bryant: 11-1

Thompson: 0-10

County High: 7-0

ACA: 9-1

Hillcrest: 10-0

Westminister: 10-0

Holy Spirit: 4-1

And, kick it: Melanie Brown, junior, blocks a shot from her opponent.

“The best part of the season was definitely when we beat County High and competed in the playoffs against Thompson.”

Playoffs: Thompson: 0-4

- Melanie Brown, junior

Almost there: Mary Leigh Derry, junior, chases the ball toward the goal line.

Correction: The girls soccer scores from the April issue were listed incorrectly; these are the corrected ones.

Girls softball team earns personal best record Abby Allen Staff Writer

The softball team had a winning season record of 27-21. Denton Bowling, softball coach, said they managed to have the second winning season in school history. “We are not as successful as we were last year;” Bowling said. “Our biggest challenge was learning how to play together as a team rather than as individuals.”

Madison Frazier, junior, said she is excited but sad about their season ending. “I am actually going to have a life,” she said. “It takes up so much time, but it is so much fun.” Frazier said, “We didn’t play nearly as many games as last year. That was crazy.” Although the team had a winning season, they also suffered some defeats. “Prattville is the hardest team we played. Out of the three times we competed,

we never beat them,” Frazier said. Abby Abston, sophomore, said her favorite part of the season was defeating Hillcrest on their own field. “Beating Hillcrest was so awesome,” Abston said. “We have broken a lot of junior varsity records this year.” The softball team participated in the Northside, Florence, Pleasant Grove, Gulf Shores, Hoover, and City/County tournaments.

Sign here, and here: Seniors Aerial Horton and Taylor Weatherby sign in the library.

Graduating seniors sign up for university athletics CeeCee Gardner Guest Writer

Senior Aerial Horton signed for track with Samford University and Taylor Weatherby signed for volleyball with the University of Mobile on May 6. Weatherby played volleyball the past

three years. Coach Kathleen Oatts said she is a hard working athlete. Aerial Horton placed second in shot put and discus in the state tournament on May 2 and May 3. Coach Jeff Sparks said in the tenth grade she was “bitten by the throw bug.”

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The Northridge Reporter May 17, 2013

Beat 8

“What I wish I knew as a freshman...”

Photos by Morgan DeWitt

Senior Beth Gabriel reprimands her freshman self.

Charlie Gross, senior, said he has one single message for all of his fellow students. “Senioritis is real. You’ll want out, trust me. You’ve been warned.” Jamel Smith, senior, said that he wished he knew high school is not at all like the movies. “We don’t jump around on tables and sing, It’s not at all like the movie Dazed and Confused,” Smith said.

Seniors reflect on high school career; give advice to underclassmen Abby Allen Staff Writer Freshman year: the year when one goes from that awkward middle school stage to high school. It is the year to start over. Well, that is at least what one usually thinks as a freshman. Then as a senior, one looks back and wonders “What was I thinking?” Abby Horn, senior, said she thought she was “so awesome” freshman year. “If I could go back and tell myself one thing freshman year, it would be to stop wearing makeup. Just stop. Stop wearing makeup now. Nobody cares what you look like but you,” Horn said. Charlie Horton, senior, said that freshman year he thought he was hot stuff. “Throw away the Crocs. No questions asked,” Horton said. Melissa Wells, senior, said that freshman year she would get up at 5:30 in the morning. “I would get up and straighten my hair and pick out cute clothes and put on makeup. Now I’m lucky if I’m out of bed at 7:40,” Wells said.

vative and more uncensored than Japan,” Fairbairn said. “I’m assuming Schorndorf will focus more on relationships between students because it pairs delegates with host partners instead of families and mothers, like in Japan.” The exchange students from Tuscaloosa are paired with German high school students called host partners based on similar interests. The Tuscaloosa students will live with their partners’ families during the trip. While in Germany, the students will go to school at the Max-Planck Gymnasium, tour the surrounding areas of Stuttgart and Heidelberg, take a side trip to Paris and hang out with their host partners. In October, the German host partners will visit Tuscaloosa so they can experi-

ence American culture. Dr. Espy said he supports the program because travel experiences are very educational. “There’s no educational experience like traveling,” Espy said. “It’s something the classroom can’t duplicate.” Fairbairn said he highly recommends the program to other high school students in Tuscaloosa. “The Sister Cities program offers an escape, a new freedom from American life,” Fairbairn said. “It’s a chance for us to utterly immerse ourselves in a completely new culture and a new world. I learned and grew more in my two weeks in Japan than I think I have in my entire life. It changed my life in ways that I could never have imagined.”

Sister Cities program prepares students for immersion in German culture Che’Quita Burrell Artist This summer, 22 students from NHS, Bryant and Central will make the almost 5,000 mile trip to Schorndorf, Germany with the Tuscaloosa Sister Cities International Program. The students have been preparing since January for the trip that will take place from June 18 to July 3. Nick Fairbairn, junior, said the students meet about once a month to learn essential German phrases and learn about German culture, traditions and history. Fairbairn said he went on an exchange to Narashino, Japan last summer with the program, and is preparing for the Schorndorf exchange this summer. “I think Germany will be less conser-

May 17, 2013 Volume 10 Issue 8

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