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Volleyball P6


Young Scholars initiative fosters STEM in elementary schools by Rabia Idrees and Mallika Patkar Editor in Chief and News Editor “Is it time to go already?” a Dogwood Elementary student incredulously said after a 3-hour class. Most elementary students would be restless after spending time during the summer working in a classroom, but the students at Dogwood and 17 other schools across the county spent time cultivating their interests and developing a passion for learning as part of the Young Scholars initiative. One hundred Jefferson students worked with these youngsters in the program this summer. They mentored students at 18 elementary schools in Fairfax County for a three week period. The sessions focused on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) curriculum. Participation in the program was encouraged as a means of community outreach. “Outreach enables us to inspire younger students to love learning. They may not be excited because of a focus on testing or because they don’t have the same resources,” Principal Evan Glazer said. “We want to spread our schools mission of spreading the joy of learning at the prospect of discovery rather than making Jefferson the destination.” Young Scholars was founded in 2003 as a program meant to identify talent in underrepresented minorities and to nurture student potential to excel. The initiative focuses on students in Kindergarten through sixth grade and seeks to raise the number of underrepresented minorities in Advanced Academics, formerly known as Gifted and Talented classes. “The overall goal is to close the achievement gap and develop higher level thinking skills in underrepresented minorities. We chose our students for this reason. My Jefferson volunteers served as great role models for the students. They showed that with hard work it is possible to achieve,” elementary school teacher Anne Godden said.

photo courtesy of Karen Ambrose

Over time, the program has proven to be successful. In 2000, 7 percent of Advanced Academics students were underrepresented minorities. By 2011, the number increased to about 16 percent. “When I first came to Dogwood, we had only about 30 students across grades 3 - 6 in the gifted and talented program. Most of the students came from backgrounds where they were nurtured academically from an early age, had college-educated parents, and had the advantage of enrichment opportunities outside of school,” said Linda Martin, Advanced Academics Resource Teacher at Dogwood Elementary School. “With the introduction of Young Scholars 10 years ago, our program has increased to 150 students. Over half of those students come from diverse backgrounds.” Despite its success, the program has faced challenges in the form of funding cuts. Currently, 16 priority elementary schools participating in the Young Scholars program receive funding through the Closing the Achievement Gap (CAG) project for their summer sessions. Many other schools fund summer sessions on their own. In many cases, the program has proven to be a success. “There have been funding cuts from FCPS that limited the program over the years. So, when it was brought back as a summer program this year, I was really excited and wanted to find out how to get our students involved,” Principal Evan Glazer said. Each school in the program had an underlying theme. At Riverside Elementary School, Advanced Academics teacher Chris Roeseler taught a 3-week program on finding patterns. Karen Ambrose, a teacher at London Towne Elementary school, taught the program around the theme of systems. “We had overarching themes that applied to several subjects. In science, we looked at ecosystems. Younger continued on p. 2

photo courtesy of Karen Ambrose

Clockwise from bottom left: Senior Kajsa Carlsson assists Dogwood students during a field trip to Stratton Woods Pond; junior Soojin Jeong teaches a student from London Towne Elementary school; senior Saketh Are teaches ecosystems to London Towne Elementary students.

The Class of 2011 presents mascot as gift to school The mascot was handmade by Randy Carfagno Productions, the same company that made the Washington Nationals president mascots, and cost $5,000. The new mascot will be present at future football games and was revealed Thursday at the annual Back to School Bash. photo illustration by Mallika Patkar

photo courtesy of Evan Glazer



tjTODAY Volume 27 Issue 1

CSPA 2011 Gold Medalist Trophy Class - VHSL NSPA 2011 All-American

Editorial Board Editor in Chief Rabia Idrees

Managing Editor

Colleen Marshall

Layout Editor Anna Hicks

News Editors

Mallika Patkar Noah Yoo

Sports Editors

Joshua Baquedano Jenny Chen Jennifer Walter

Spread Editors

Amy Ahn Lakshmi Chandran

Features Editors

Tahmina Achekzai YouNa An Sunny Kim Thrisha Potluri


Jennifer Seavey, MJE


Silver Communications TjTODAY is the official newspaper of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology published monthly by the journalism staff. It serves as a vehicle for student expression and is an open forum of issues of interest and concern to the school community. 6560 Braddock Road Alexandria, VA 22312 Phone: (703)-750-8375 Fax: (703)-750-5010 Web site: Send letters to:

september 6, 2011

Young Scholars Program and Consulting Club provide summer enrichment ideas continued from p. 1 students looked at specific topics, while older students looked at the subjects at a more global scale,” Ambrose said. Jefferson volunteers taught specific lessons that fell under the overarching themes of their programs. They did presentations to groups of students, but also worked one-on-one. Mentors covered what they learned at Jefferson such as periodic trends and the irrationality of pi. “I was a mentor for the children. We went with them on their field trips and acted as group leaders. We would help them with their data collecting, experiments and also data analysis,” junior Ben Hsu said. Spending time with mentors encouraged some students to apply to Jefferson. “We want to thank the TJ Mentors for making our Summer Science Academy an amazing experience for the children. Several of the older students now have the ambition of applying to Thomas Jefferson and want us to download the study materials. A year ago, the students didn’t even know what TJ was- now they are enthused about the opportunity of attending school there,” Martin said, “Their love of science, technology, and math has been affirmed to a much greater extent, and they now have role models to show them the way,” Many of the mentors found the program not only beneficial to students they helped, but also for themselves. “For me, the program was very refreshing as I loved being around the high-spirited, care-free kids. I definitely connected with the kids and created friendships all while learning how to communicate ideas in a fun and simple manner so the kids could follow along and better understand,” senior Anastasia Georgiou said. The Young Scholars-Jefferson effort was conceived during a meeting of the Diversity and Outreach Curriculum Team, Glazer and Carol Horn, FCPS Advanced Academics Coordinator, back in the spring. Together with the new TJ Admissions Out-

Clockwise from top right, mathematics teacher Michael Auerbach and English teacher Denise Castaldo pose at their wedding, physics teacher Adam Smith poses at his wedding over the summer, geosystems teacher John Woodwell smiles with his new bride and former mathematics teacher Jennifer Pierce poses with her new husband at Grand Teton National Park.

reach specialist, Glazer worked to identify schools with an interest in hosting the student mentors. The Consulting Club was responsible for informing Jefferson students about the Young Scholars initiative. Students were able to sign up at a booth on J-Day and were also contacted by e-mail. “The Consulting Club was able to set up a process by which they got over 80 students to sign up to volunteer within a week,” Mildie Waterfall, Consulting Club sponsor said. One of Jefferson’s goals is to give back to the community. In October, Jefferson will launch its STEMbassadors program, an ini-

tiative to participate in community outreach on a broader scale. Students will participate in mentoring and tutoring programs that are not limited to Jefferson’s local geography. Students live across Northern Virginia, and if they work in their local communities, the outreach program will be far-reaching. “Our students are wonderful advocates and diplomats to spread our schools mission. The big picture regarding outreach is that we play an important role in inspiring math, science and tech,” Glazer said. “We are involving anyone affiliated with the school to work on outreach in a far-reaching effort. We already have 83 people volunteering.”

by Sunny Kim Features Editor The Student Government Association (SGA) is planning an initiative to honor the first responders who are still suffering from the aftereffects of the terrorist attack on Sept. 11, 2001. Senior Helen Hastings, SGA president, is leading this initiative. She first got the idea to plan a school-wide event to commemorate the 10th anniversary of 9/11 from English teacher Judy Bello shortly after she was elected. “Mrs. Bello gave me the idea, and I took it from there,” Hastings said. Hastings contacted the FealGood Foundation, which had a mission “to spread awareness and educate the public about the catastrophic health effects on 9/11 first responders, as well as to provide assistance to relieve these great heroes of the financial burdens placed on them,” according to the FealGood Foundation’s official website. The first responders were exposed to the fumes and pollutants at Ground Zero in an effort to save the victims and are suffering from respiratory diseases, heart diseases and cancer as a result. The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act became Public Law on Jan. 2 to provide federal health benefits to the first responders with effort from the FealGood Foundation. John Feal, the founder and president of the

organization, was a first responder whose left foot was heavily injured due to roughly 8,000 pounds of steel crushing it removing steel, rubble and debris from Ground Zero. His injury and the lack of response he and other responders got from the insurance companies, doctors and elected officials led him to create the FealGood Foundation. “These responders are the best of the best, and everyone should commemorate them,” Feal said. Hastings and Feal have scheduled around six to eight speakers from the organization to come to Jefferson. The speakers will visit on Sept. 16 to deliver the presentations during eighth period. There will be an opportunity for the students to personally encourage the first responders through letters on Sept. 12, utilizing the five minutes built into first period. “There will be a moment of silence for those who lost their lives 10 years ago, followed by the opportunity for each student to write a letter thanking a first responder,” Hastings said. The initiative need not end with the one activity. “My understanding is that the first responders think America has forgotten what they sacrificed for it,” Hastings said. “My hope is that the students of TJ can help convince them otherwise.”

SGA organizes 9/11 first responder appreciation effort

tie the knot Prototyping teacher Clint Behling, counselors Kerry Campane (now Hamblin) and Alexa Greenblatt (now Scott), geosystems teacher John Woodwell, physics teacher Adam Smith and former mathematics teacher Jennifer Pierce were wed this summer. Mathematics teacher Michael Auerbach and English teacher Denise Castaldo also married after an engagement announced earlier this year.

photo courtesy of Karen Ambrose

Senior Saketh Are accompanies London Towne students on a field trip to identify ecosystems.

photo courtesy of Denise Castaldo

photo courtesy of Adam Smith

photo courtesy of John Woodwell

graphic by Anna Hicks

reporting by Anna Hicks

photo courtesy of Jennifer Pierce

(dress your best)


Two is Better than One (group day)


Get in Tune!


(music and bands)

(dress your best)

From Head to Toe, Let Your Spirit Show!

(red, white, blue and togas)

To’s and From’s (theme day)



MON To The Red Carpet


HOMECOMING 2011 Freshmen Blast from the Past


Into the Jungle

Juniors It’s on YouTube!


To Infinity and Beyond


september 6, 2011

NEWSMAKERS Rocket kids to go to NASA

photo courtesy Karin Lehnigk

The News Seniors Jonathan Lykins and Narotham Badrish inspect their rocket on its launch pad for the Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC). Backstory The team received a seventh place award at the TARC competition held in the spring by launching a rocket containing an egg to 750 feet with a flight time of 40 to 45 seconds. Their reward included a cash prize, providing more funding to their club and the opportunity to participate in SLI. “This is the first year a TJ team has been invited to participate in SLI,” faculty adviser to the TARC eighth period club Duncan Forbes said. “We’ve had teams in TARC for the past three years, but you have to win to be invited by NASA to submit a proposal.” Senior Karin Lehnigk was a member of the winning TARC team and is now working on the SLI proposal. “SLI is a NASA sponsored program that allows us to design, build and launch a rocket up one mile above the ground and preform some kind of in-launch experiment,” Lehnigk said. If their proposal, which is due Sept 19, is accepted and they meet the further requirements set out by NASA, they will travel to the Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama to launch their rocket in April 2012. With this new project beginning for the club, the team thinks that it may be time to look into changing the name to encompass all of rocketry. “We’re thinking about changing our eighth period club name because we now don’t compete in just TARC anymore,” Lehnigk said. “We have SLI and Battle of the Rockets where you can either compete in launching a rocket or you can even add a rover.” - Colleen Marshall

Smith teaches in Fiji

Cobb offers summer Biotech

photo courtesy Andrea Smith

The News Counselor Andrea Smith displays the clothing that she donated to Fijians during her threeweek summer trip through Projects Abroad. Backstory Smith first had the idea to go to Fiji when she was in graduate school. “I had a classmate whose mother was a travel agent, and she’d show me these albums of places that she’d traveled to,” Smith said. “I saw pictures from Fiji, with the Polynesian/Melanesian African people with afros who looked like me, and I knew I wanted to travel there.” Fiji is a small island nation in the south Pacific Ocean, northeast of New Zealand. While the country features many resorts and coral reefs, Smith decided that a laidback vacation wasn’t for her. “I did not want the typical vacation where they take you and put you in a resort, and you can scuba dive to your heart’s content,” she said. “I wanted to be in with the people, to get to know them, to learn a little bit of the language, to learn the culture, to learn the tradition and that is what I got to do.” Smith spent most of her time with mentally challenged and pre-school orphans at the Dilkusha Children’s Home, an orphanage in the city of Nausori. She worked with them through music therapy, using handbell sets and ocarinas that she brought with her and spent the rest of her time getting to know the local Fijians. “People would ask me if I wanted to go down and see the giant clams or sit with them and talk to them and I elected to talk with them,” Smith said. “I learned that family was important to them. Social interaction is important to them. I didn’t see much TV, I didn’t hear much radio – they would rather just say, let’s sit, let’s talk. I’d definitely go back in a heartbeat.” - Noah Yoo


photo courtesy of Andrea Cobb

The News Senior Flint Song, juniors Saniya Suri, Michelle Lee, Niraja Bohidar, Ashrit Bagali, David Gao, Avanti Shirke and Minneapolis visitor Samantha Zarate participate in the Introduction to Biotechnology Research course taught by Andrea Cobb over the summer. Backstory Thirteen students took part in this summer research opportunity, three of whom were seniors that attend high schools outside of Jefferson. The students met for several days after the end of school in June and then for three weeks beginning July 5. “I was the only instructor for it, and for me, it was just lots of fun,” Cobb said. “A lot of work, but I really enjoy helping students develop their research ideas and troubleshoot them.” The noncredit fee-based course allowed students interested in biotechnology to conduct their own research, or follow a “teacher’s choice” and work on an idea of Cobb’s choosing. “I’m kinda of eclectic; I want to expand my knowledge and experience in many different fields that interest me, and not just one,” senior Flint Song said. Song is planning on going into the neuroscience tech lab this school year. “There isn’t nearly enough time or space in these four years at TJ for me to explore everything I wanted to, so this summer experience efficiently uses my time.” Cobb compared the biotechnology research to the other research opportunities that Jefferson students participate in, at places such as NIH and George Mason University. “It’s a really good option for students that want to do some research without having to commit to a full-summer commitment,” she said. “I think we’ll keep doing it. I think there’s interest with at least a couple of the other lab directors to start doing the same thing with their tech labs. We’ll probably fine tune it. I think there’s a niche for it.” - Noah Yoo

SAT Prep Exclusively for High-Achievers It’s no surprise that Honors Test Prep is the SAT prep program of choice for TJ students.

Visit to review our complete ’11-’12 course schedule and learn about our SAT Course, SAT Essay Workshop, and PSAT/SAT Course.


“My son and daughter both took the Honors Test Prep course and both scored 2380 on the test. They reported that they were given individual feedback and error analysis in addition to applicable practice problems. It is obvious that Mr. Berk keeps up to date with the most recent changes in the test and is invested in the students’ achievement. I was glad to find a course tailored to high achieving students.” Gail Gardiner, parent of TJ student, Class of 2010



september 6, 2011


september 6, 2011


Are you confused by all the faculty and staff switches this fall? Check out where to find familiar faces, as well as new ones, on campus. “The greatest opportunity TJ has in staying connected to the outside technological world comes from continuing studentmentor collaborations and strengthening our partnerships with the myriad of connections we are fortunate to have.” - Matthew Pearce Science/Technology Division Manager (119) Continuing role as Mentorship Director

“We are starting to have online attendance to be more green.” - Allison Agee Eighth Period Coordinator (236wk) Previously an After School Specialist working with middle school students

“This year I’m helping Mr. Pearce with the successful mentorship program, and I’ll be responsible for organizing TJSTAR.”

“I’m excited to have more of a role in the school-wide decision making process.”

- Kayla Gutierrez Administrative Assistant (119) University of Florida graduate - Go Gators!

- Denise Castaldo Humanities Division Manager (222wk) Will continue to teach three English classes

“While completing my Ph.D. coursework, I found my position reaffirmed that the first and best way teachers can help their students is to learn more about the subject themselves.” - Shane Torbert Systems Research Lab Director (115) Returning after leave of absence

“The generally pervasive feeling of support students have for one another is what makes TJ unique.”

“Geosystems is so dynamic it’s hard to keep things up to date. Our task is to make sure we stay current in that technology.”

- Marty Dubin Special Services (201wk) Former principal of Hayfield Secondary School

- Jim Jarvis Geosystems (143) Former Science/Technology Division Manager “My job is to find a balance between what I do during school and what I do after school.” - Tim Cocrane Lab Instructional Assistant and Assistant Athletic Trainer Working with Heather Murphy

“What surprised me the most about TJ is the number of schools that kids applied to.”

“My primary responsibility is to make sure that teachers have all the technology they need.”

- Rae Kobren Transcript Secretary (Transcript Office) Replaced Linda Guglielmo last year

- Marjee Chmiel Site-Based Tech Support (110) Designed and produced science education video games for National Geographic and PBS

“To be honest, I just want to follow the curriculum. As time goes on, I’ll figure out which parts might need to be modified or improved.” - Jim Jo Design and Tech 9 (146 and 150) Former teacher at South County/Chantilly

“I started off dealing with seniors and I’m excited to get back to that.” “We focus on a lot of important skills especially communication skills. However, it is also important for students going into science and engineering to have a background in the humanities and in the literature that we teach.”

- Paul Kosek Communications Research Lab Director (111) Former Design and Tech 9 teacher

- Rebecca Glatter (T15 and 222wk) Social Studies Department Chair Will continue to teach four classes

“My primary responsibility is to assist the assistant principals and handle substitute teachers.”

“E-books and electronic resources are a growing part of any library, and it is important to teach TJ students how to use these resources.”

- Leah Reid Administrative Assistant (Office) Replaced Kim Byers last May

“I think I’ll have an idea of the pressures to achieve and succeed. I definitely remember how unique this place is.” - Greg Myers Psychologist (A-10) TJ graduate Class of ‘98

- Anne Applin Head Librarian (Library) Mother of junior Rebecca Applin Graphics, photos and reporting by Amy Ahn and Lakshmi Chandran



september 6, 2011

New coaches bring fresh outlook to volleyball

by Jenny Chen Sports Editor With a promising 1-1 start for the Lady Colonials, the players as well as the new faces on the coaching staff are optimistic about the season. Head varsity coach Helen Smith is one of the new faces. “Regardless of wins and losses, I just want the girls to enjoy the game and to learn and improve. As long as we reach that goal, I’ll be happy.” Smith said. Smith excelled as a defensive specialist and libero on her high school girls and coed teams, both of which she captained, and went on to play Division 1 volleyball for the University of Maryland Baltimore County. “I’ve also been coaching volleyball for about eight years now,” Smith said. “Currently I’m coaching for Arlington Volleyball Club. I’m also affiliated with MOJO Volleyball Academy.” Joining Smith on the staff are assistant varsity coach Annie Baratto, junior varsity coach Casey Smith and freshman coach Scott Campbell. With nine years of coaching experience and a passion for the game, Baratto met Helen Smith when they both coached for MOJO Volleyball Academy. Baratto has also instructed adult leagues abroad. “Everywhere I have lived I have played the sport in some form,” Baratto said. Casey Smith has 13 years of playing beach and indoor volleyball and six years of coaching under her belt. In high school, she was the starting varsity setter all four years and made numerous select teams.

“While in college, I focused my coaching on private lessons and assisting my mom at my alma mater,” she said. Campbell played on his high school varsity team for three years and was selected as an all-conference setter. As well as volleyball, he has coached boys varsity soccer and cross country and is a new ad-

Helen Smith

Annie Baratto

photo by Jenny Chen

Seniors Nancy Wang, Nicole Gonzalez, Angela Liu, junior Christina Shincovich and freshman Maria Velicu share a lighter moment on the court in their game against Wakefield on Aug. 29.

dition to the humanities department. “My job is to help these young ladies learn more about the game of volleyball, teamwork and leadership, and to prepare them to be contributing members to the junior varsity and varsity programs,” Campbell said. One of the main changes that the

coaching staff has implemented is a new organization of practices. Coaches devote these two hours to skills the team needs to work on, with players engaging in drills and scrimmages. “One of the things that the new coaches have done, which I absolutely love, is that they very clearly plan out our practices beforehand. In fact, at the start of all our practices, they show us what the plan is for the next two hours,” senior cocaptain Angela Liu said. On top of changes to the coaching staff, the team welcomes eight new players from all grade levels in addition to five returning players. Among the eight players is freshman Maria Velicu, pictured on the front page, who shows impressive talent in hitting. While the Lady Colonials are off to a strong start, having won a pre-season scrimmage against the T.C. Williams Titans on Aug. 25 in addition to their victory over the Wakefield Warriors, they are faced with some challenges. “We never give up and we show no fear even though the other side of the net probably sports bigger and taller players. We bring it to them anyway,” Liu said. What it lacks in size, the team makes up with skill, communication and enthusiasm. The players are sure to be a tough match on every court they step on while still having fun with every point scored. “My expectation is for the girls to give 100 percent at all times,” Casey Smith said. “I will not be satisfied with anything less. If they work as hard as they can and leave it all on the court, then we will be unstoppable.”

Casey Smith Scott Campbell

photos and reporting by Jenny Chen and Anna Hicks

Head Varsity Coach

Assistant Varsity Coach

Junior Varsity Coach

Freshman Coach

“I came to TJ for the opportunity to build a successful program, and I couldn’t be any happier with the group of girls and parents I am so lucky to work with. This season is looking bright.”

“If you haven’t noticed, the volleyball banner in the gym is blank right now. Our coaching staff is looking to change that soon. We are dedicated to forming a winning volleyball program at TJ.”

“The girls here at Jefferson are one of a kind. Their hard work, diligence and energy are contagious and I really enjoy working with them.”

“I was hired to teach APUSH and World History and am a teacher first and foremost, but I’ve always believed in the value of sports for teaching students about leadership, teamwork and sacrifice.”

worse when I did anything mentally taxing, especially trying to concentrate in school.” The Virginia State Senate passed Senate Bill 652 last spring, mandating that studentathletes and their parents must review concussion information before the player may participate in athletics. It also stipulates that players “suspected of sustaining a concussion shall be removed from play. A studentathlete who has been removed from play shall not return to play that same day nor until evaluated by an appropriate licensed health care provider.” Despite the new policy, the team will not be deterred from playing physical football. Head coach Ken Kincaid is encouraged by the team’s increased physicality, which they showed in their opening scrimmage against Edison. “We were more physical against Ediphoto by Joshua Baquedano son than we were at any point last seaSeniors Dimitre Nitchev, Patrick Yu and Luke Birch and junior Rashad Laher treat their soreness by slushing after practice on Aug. 30. son,” Kincaid said.

“Our physicality also led to us beating Washington-Lee in our second scrimmage.” The win over W-L had the team feeling confident heading into their first game against Falls Church. “We expect to battle in every game, and if we execute our game plans to perfection, we will have a lot of success this year,” Karn said. Karn will be hoping to play a full season and lead the team to an improvement on last season’s 1-9 record. “We all want to be playing well into November and we want to win a playoff game,” Karn said. The team will need to have a clean bill of health to accomplish those goals, and the new provisions will hopefully ensure that players stay healthy. “The law didn’t affect Fairfax, as the county has always had protocol in place,” said head athletic trainer Heather Murphy. “I have always talked to parents about concussions, and the county added the online version to make the information more accessible.” According to the MedStar Health Research Institute in Baltimore, which commissioned a study of concussion occurrences in Fairfax Schools, the rate of concussions increased 15.5 percent yearly between 1997 and 2008. According to Murphy, Jefferson experienced fewer concussions last year than other Fairfax Schools, but still had its highest rate

Football enters season with new health regulations by Joshua Baquedano Sports Editor Imagine dropping back to throw a pass. The next moment, you’ve blacked out. Soon after that, you realize that you can’t remember what you did that day. This is what happened to senior quarterback Kevin Karn when he suffered a concussion last season. “It took me a few hours to regain my memory,” Karn said. “For about a week, I had a constant headache that would get a lot

in years. Murphy admits that the increasing rate is due to a higher percentage of concussions being reported, due to increased awareness. However, concussions are still a growing problem, with the onus usually falling on the athlete to report their condition. “Athletes usually report their own concussions,” Murphy said. “My athletes trust me and I trust them.” All students suspected of a head injury are taken off the field and sent home with an ACE care plan. The plan includes medical advice, a survey allowing athletes to report their condition and articles from industry leaders. The players also take the initiative in terms of treating themselves. After practice, players can be found “slushing,” a team tradition that involves the players placing their legs in an ice bucket to combat the bumps and bruises that come with football practice. The change in policy hasn’t had an affect on the Colonials’ practices. “I have always emphasized the importance of playing football with your shoulders to minimize concussion risk,” Kincaid said. Kincaid hopes the team will give the community something to be excited about. “We want people to be excited at a pep rally,” Kincaid said. “And not just about the skits.”


september 6, 2011


Greg Myers

New teachers and faculty help students get to know them a little better by answering a few questions for the tjTODAY staff.

Courses: AP Statistics Multivariable Calculus Q: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? A: I did an analysis of the literature pertaining to the cost-effectiveness of de-worming in sub-Saharan Africa. Q: What are you excited about for the upcoming year? A: I’m really excited by the highly motivated and accomplished student body. Q: What will students find most surprising about you? A: I’m from San Francisco; I moved here for this job.

Q: What will students find most surprising about you? A: Probably that I’ve lived and worked in so many countries. I’ve worked in Indonesia, Vietnam, the Philippines, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. I’ve traveled throughout North Africa, Europe, and much of the rest of East Asia. Q: What are you excited about for the upcoming year? A: That I’m not gonna have to carry so much of the load myself; the students are going to be more actively involved in their own education.




W We were not able


to cover new German teacher Szilvia Oszko due to our publishing deadline.

Reporting by Tahmina Achekzai and YouNa An Photos by Tahmina Achekzai, YouNa An and Rabia Idrees

Courses: English 9 and 10

Q: What will students find most surprising about you? A: I can be pretty tough and demanding with what I expect, but I can be flexible at the same time. Q: What are you excited about for the upcoming year? A: I’m excited about teaching integrated courses… I’m really excited to be working with teachers from other divisions. Q: Why did you choose Jefferson? A: The higher level of students, of course. And all the disciplines are integrated. I’ve always integrated history and philosophy into my teaching…I minored in philosophy in college. I like that this place is all about being able to integrate. I want to enable students to think beyond English and literature.

Jim Jo

Courses: AP Pyschology Topics and Globalization

Courses: World History 2 Topics and Globalization

Maria Gilbert

Q: What will students find most surprising about you? A: My endless enthusiasm. Q: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? A: Being a great husband, and when my students tell me their college courses were easy because of my class, and when students become teachers. Q: What are you excited about for the upcoming year? A: Students at TJ have a drive to be the best, and I want to be the best in my profession as well. I plan to grow as much as the students.

Q: What do you think students will find most surprising about you? A: Global-diversity in my classroom. Q: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? A: I was a semi-pro gamer of Starcraft.That’s why I decided to study how to make games. Q: What are you excited about for the upcoming year? A: Challenge, fun, and funny challenge!

Jo-Ann Muir

Richard Monteverde

Scott Campbell Courses: AP US History World History 2

Q: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? A: The Engineering and Technology Club of South County Secondary School won the Best Rookie Award and Finalist from the 2008 Botball Robot Regional Competition at the University of Maryland. I was the club sponsor. Q: Why did you choose TJ? A: I believed TJ would provide students and me with a good research environment. I hope my engineering R&D experiences are going to be useful tools to teach students how to conduct research.

Anne Applin

Design and Technology

Q: What is your greatest accomplishment? A: I’m very proud of being a member of the editorial panel of Mathematics Teacher, which is a journal. The interesting thing about that is the path that took me to that began here in a summer program years ago. It was a modeling workshop for teachers sponsored by NSA, and out of that, I wrote an article. Q: What are you excited about for the upcoming year? A: I’m excited about doing math with students who are as excited about mathematics as I am. Q: Why did you choose Jefferson? A: The opportunity to teach here is wonderful.

Nicole Kim

Q: What will students find most surprising about you? A: That my son went here. They might also find it surprising that I am a TJ crew coach and a rower. Students might not look at me and realize that I am an athlete and a coach. Q: Why did you choose Jefferson? A: I think I wanted to step up my teaching a bit. I started my career by doing science policy work on the Hill, and I see coming to TJ as completing that circle.

Courses : English 9 Language Services

Q: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? A: I earned a Fulbright grant to teach English in a university in Poland for a year. Q: What will students find most surprising about you? A: I started out as a music major. I still wanted to teach, but I realized I’d rather teach English than music. I’m in an a capella group! Q: What are you excited about for the upcoming year? A: The chance to work with the caliber of students and teachers that TJ has. It’s a unique place so it’s a unique opportunity. It’s not a chance one gets every day.

Suzette Henry

Courses: AP Statistics Algebra 2/Trig

Stephanie Glotfelty

Jonah Sinick

Margaret Coffey

Computer Science, Pre-Calc

photo illustration by Tahmina Achekzai

Q: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? A: Being a successful graduate of TJ. Q: What are you excited about for the upcoming year? I’m really excited to see TJ from the reverse side. Q: Why did you choose Jefferson? A: I love this school. It’s really cool to be back and see the excitement of the new students. I don’t think I’d work in another school in the county.

Head Librarian

Q: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? A: I’m a cancer survivor. Q: What are you most excited about for the upcoming school year? A: I’m most excited about working with TJ students and helping them develop critical research skills. Q: Why did you choose Jefferson? A: I think TJ is a wonderful school, and I’m impressed with how hard the students work.


Courses: English 9 and 10

Q: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? A: Becoming a teacher and enjoying the profession. It is unfortunate how many individuals aren’t aware of the challenges AND the joys that come with working with students and other enthusiastic professionals. Q: What are you excited about for the upcoming year? A: I get to “geek out” a little. I went to a science and tech school, so it almost feels as if I am coming home. I have the opportunity as an English teacher, to bring in another element to a TJ student’s experience. Q: Why did you choose Jefferson? A: My decision evolved from a variety of factors-- my background is definitely one component. I wanted to work with students who saw learning as building bridges to themselves as well as their communities.



september 6, 2011

Senior Daniel Perkes

Senior Alexandria Sutton

“The part that was most memorable was the ongoing political, legal and social debate about patient rights and how money is exchanged in today’s legal, medical and educational fields.” “I was shocked by the fact that patients in mental hospitals were treated so badly. I know that this can happen, but I’m shocked that it wasn’t stopped more quickly.”

Junior Acacia Dai

“Hopkins should have made sure that all legal issues concerning their keeping of the cells were addressed rather than ignored.” “The book shows us that race relations defied ethics in many situations in the U.S. for a long time.”

Freshman Joe Moore

“I was shocked by the “HeLa Bomb” when a littleknown scientist told an audience of famous researchers that their previous decade of work might have been completely wasted by HeLa contamination. It makes me wonder if there are any similarly overlooked “bombs” in today’s medical world that might suddenly make certain research illegitimate.”

“I liked how Skloot was able to do research and recreate Henrietta Lacks’ lifestyle.” “I was troubled most by the ethical dilemma that persists.”

“The book tells us that being accustomed to prejudice or bias against a certain group can cause ethical practices to be overlooked in favor of profit.”

Students share their reactions to the issues presented in the One Book summer reading choice. Medical ethics and race discrimination catch readers by surprise. Sophomore Jessica Sun “I was most shocked by the fact that so many scientists were so unwilling to accredit Henrietta’s family.” “The book tells us that race and ethics were once upon a time thought about separately, not together.”

Senior Mayank Jain “I agree with Hopkins’ treatment of the HeLa cells. If those scientists hadn’t taken her cells, imagine how much worse off we’d be. The cells were instrumental in the creation of the polio vaccine, and they’ve been used extensively in research.” “I don’t think that race played a factor in Lacks’ treatment because everyone’s cells were experimented on at that time. As for ethics, maybe they could have been clearer when they said they would use her cells.”

Junior Woo-Ju Kim “It was interesting to read about Deborah and Rebecca’s growing relationship. The determination she showed to write her book and get close to Henrietta’s family was inspirational.” “The book tells us that it’s hard for us, as humans, to maintain integrity and ethical practices in medicine in a world where there can be so much prejudice and selfinterest.” drawing by Tahmina Achekzai graphics and reporting by Thrisha Potluri photo permission from Omar Quintero and Tom Deerinck photos by Anna Hicks, Thrisha Potluri and Jennifer Seavey

September 2011  

September issue