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Capers showcases diversity of talents page 20

R oc k Brid g e H ig h School • 4303 S. Prov i dence Rd. - C o l u mb i a , MO 6 5 2 0 3 • Vo l u me 3 9, Issu e 7 • Ap r il 26, 2012 • h ttp : / / w w w . b e a r ingne w s. or g

Technology gain in place for CPS

DECA students excel, head for nationals in Utah

Alyssa Sykuta

Isaac Pasley



he best marketing students in RBHS will soon get a chance to show their talents on the national stage. Eight students in DECA, an international marketing program, qualified for the national competition. The state contest was at Lake of the Ozarks March 18-20, and the results were announced two days later. More than 1,400 students participated, and the top six in each individual event advanced to nationals. The students who advanced to nationals were senior Alaina Battaglia in apparel and accessories marketing, senior Harry Schauwecker in food marketing, senior Syed Ejaz in human resource management, seniors Shane Kuse and Michael Fentress in marketing management, junior Rachel Volmert in retail merchandising, senior Alex Gregory in business finance and Kaitlyn Robertson in principles of hospitality and tourism. For the students who won state, a berth in the nationals was the result of a long series of steps. “To get to nationals, basically, you had to advance through the first district-level competition, which was just schools in midMissouri,” Kuse said. “And after districts, if you placed top two in districts, you got to the state-level competition. And then if you finish top in state, you advance to the national-level competition.” The national contest will take place April 28 — May 1 in Salt Lake City, Utah, and will be another chance for Kuse to display his talents. Kuse made it to nationals the year before, but he said this year’s contest should be even better because of a larger competition field. “This year, we have a good amount more people going to nationals this year [compared to last]. Every year, more people go in,” Kuse said. “Myself, I think I’ll be able to do better than I did last year, just ‘cause I’ve been there, and I know more, and I’ve studied more about the topic.” Marketing teacher John Fuenfhausen said the DECA competition is divided into two parts. The first part involves a 100-question marketing test, and in the second part, students do a role play activity, in which they have to develop a solution to a situation they are given. Afterwards, a judge gives the students a score based on how well they did. Students “are all given situations during competition [in which] they have a limited amount of time to develop a solution. This takes quick thinking but also an application of marketing principles,” Fuenfhausen said. “Add in the pressure of the situation, and it makes it very challenging. These students did a great job in this area.” Eichholz and Fuenfhausen know despite their team’s skill, the DECA competitors at RBHS will still have a huge challenge facing them in Salt Lake. “We have some great students who will give it their best,” Fuenfhausen said. “I always look forward to the experience. Salt Lake City will be a great challenge and a good time to meet new and interesting people.”

photo by Muhammad Al-Rawi

Seats to fill: Melissa Wessel’s second hour anatomy class had only 12 of 26 students present during Senior Skip Day. More than 200 seniors participated last Friday, April 20. The non school-sanctioned skip day could result in loss of state-funded revenue for the district.

Senior Skip Day proves costly Lowered attendance rates also impact state funding Joanne Lee


fter senior Dominique Lardizabal finished his first period Jazz Combo class, he couldn’t overcome his mindset that he didn’t have the obligation to be at school; it was senior skip day. He ended up skipping the remainder of the day to partake in tradition. Lardizabal was not only unaware that senior skip day was not school-approved, he also did not know of the financial impact of his decision. Similar to Lardizabal, other seniors may have aimlessly skipped school last Friday, April 20, leaving attendance officials to go through several days’ worth of paperwork in order to decide punishments. Dr. Lisa Nieuwenhuizen said an estimated 200 plus seniors skipped class on Senior Skip Day, roughly one third of the 640 students in the senior class. Senior Skip Day “had a significant financial impact because the teachers here are paid per pupil when they receive reimbursement from the state,” Nieuwenhuizen said. “It’s called ADA for average daily attendance.” However, parent excuses accounted for the majority of the 200 plus seniors who missed school. Nieuwenhui-

zen said this significantly lightens the workload of attendance secretaries. “I consider it easier work in our part [to have the parents call in advance for their child] because it’s better than having to go through everybody that is marked absent,” Nieuwenhuizen said. But last year’s senior principal and current sophomore principal Dr. Tim Wright said attendance secretaries still spend most of their time at school simply trying to clear or verify the student absences. “We don’t acknowledge any day as a Senior Skip Day. I heard from Nieuwenhuizen that this year she had to go through 10 pages of attendance. Secretaries spend a long time clearing or verifying absences; that’s a lot of conversations with seniors,” Wright said. “RBHS has one of the highest attendance rates, but we also work hard to make it possible. I spend most of my time in solving problems in tardies and truancies. The board goal is an average of 95 percent attendance of student body.” Principal Mark Maus verified the school is “given money by the state based on student attendance.” Thus, this hit to attendance — particularly significant since seniors represent a third of the school’s population — equates to less funding provided by the state.

n a world where the reach of technology is ever-increasing, the realm of education constantly tries to keep up. For this reason, Columbia Public Schools will continue to make technology changes, implementing many by the fall of 2012. Media Specialist Dennis Murphy said the school will have wireless access points everywhere in the building by next semester. Another major switch to occur this summer regards replacing the Groupwise email network currently in use with Microsoft Office 365. “The only thing we’re using is Groupwise now for email,” Murphy said. “Novell is gone; we switched over to Microsoft this year. [Instructional and Informational Technology Services] probably would have switched the email, but they didn’t want to make all of those changes at one time because it was hard enough just to move over from Novell to Microsoft. And so there were committees who looked at Google and lots of different email, and since we had so much with Microsoft and Microsoft has such a good product, [they decided] that it would integrate best with what we’re doing.” Concerning costs of switching the email systems, Murphy said the Microsoft package CPS purchased and installed this year already includes the cost of the email service. Therefore, the district will not feel any additional cost by employing the Microsoft 365 mail server. Julie Nichols, manager of instructional technology at IITS, said a lot of planning and input is involved when it comes to decision-making on technological advancements for CPS. A three to five year plan created last year lays out where the school district hopes to go with technology, and teachers and other district representatives gather monthly to voice their needs and draft policies to present to the district technology committee. story continued on page 2

Kelly Sports creates profits Avantika Khatri


ive weeks will mark the end of a full year of Columbia Public Schools’ contract with Kelly Sports Properties, during which the district received a reported $157,100 more than it did last year. Because KSP was a new undertaking, CPS athletic director Bruce Whitesides said the contract came with initial skepticism. Wrestling booster’s representative Jennifer Welsh said initial resistance toward the deal with KSP arose because boosters believed they would not be allowed to continue their own fundraising, but along with providing advertising and revenue for the district, KSP allows groups to fundraise independent of KSP. “Kelly Sports Properties has helped with the wrestling program in that we had magnets this year and last year. We have programs and the media guide and all of that

stuff that we would not have had before because those were things that the teams had fundraised on their own. And the wrestling team has never had that,” Welsh said. Also it “brings equality to sports and things like that, and you know the kids really liked it that they had magnets, calendars and programs.” KSP also brought Adidas to sign on for $10,000 worth of goods to the school each year, which is distributed among the sports departments. Athletic director Jennifer Mast said the school decided to give half of the goods to the booster club. “I guess budgetarily, it helped significantly. That’s quite a bit of merchandise,” apparel director of booster club Nancy O’Connor said. “Because it’s $5,000 we don’t have to spend out of our budget because we have only so much we can spend on merchandise, so it helps on my budget. You know, I saved $5,000 and I can make that

in profit.” Of the total revenue the district received this year, $313,297, the district paid off $153,758 for the scoreboards, with $170,000 remaining due. KSP representative Dan Holt said advertising brought in some of the revenue, but it also united the district’s sports teams so they did not undercut others’ advertising and sponsorship deals. KSP also assisted the music department. However, choir director Mike Pierson said beyond offsetting the department’s program costs, KSP has provided little aid. KSP “want[s] to include music in” the contract, Pierson said, “but they have no idea how and if they can help reduce our workload.” Holt said most interactions with the music department have been on an advising basis. The two parties communicate through email and phone numbers as KSP advises the department and others on creating successful fundraisers. story continued on page 2

photo by Muhammad Al-Rawi

Outside money: Kelly Sports’ representation is prominent through the school. The district has made $157,100 in profits from the union.

Inside this Issue

School mural in progression

Social media creates profits

Girls soccer overcomes

Some students work part-time jobs to keep their income flowing. But senior Curran Van Waarde utilizes social networking as a means of earning money. Through websites such as Twitter and YouTube, Van Waarde turns an entertaining hobby into a money-maker.

The girls soccer team battles through several game cancellations and the absence of a C-team. Although the teams practice daily, the age diversity of the group proves harder to manage than in years past.



Life causes missed chances photo by Muhammad Al-Rawi

Just a few weeks away from summer, junior Paige Selman takes on an art project to be completed by the end of the school year. Selman hopes her mural of the school will leave a lasting impression.


Despite the stereotypical teenage longing for freedom, many students are stuck within the boundaries they have always known. From constantly nagging parents to the pressures of living in a college town, teens often find themselves stuck in confinement.


photo by Halley Hollis

Visit Bearing News to find up-to-date stories and info as well as The ROCK online at rbhs/bearingnews News Community Personality Profiles Features In-Depths Op/Ed Athletic Profiles Sports A&E

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2 ∙ News April 26, 2012


W rld


MOJCL convention unites 12 schools Members participate in games, celebrate local teacher of the year

in brief

Airline crash kills 127, cause still unknown


n Friday April 20, a Pakistani Boeing 737 carrying 127 people on a domestic route crashed on approach to land, resulting in the deaths of all on board. The airline was on approach to Benazir Bhutto International Airport in Islamabad from Karachi. Authorities are still investigating the cause of the accident, but noted that the area was experiencing violent thunderstorms and limited visibility during the landing. The flight data recorder was recovered from the accident, but officials are withholding its contents while the investigation continues. At least 120 bodies have been recovered from the crash site with seven still missing. Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik said family members of the victims are flying into the city to identify the remains. Authorities have used relatives and fingerprints to identify 73 of the passengers on the plane, with more than 150 bags of body parts having been shipped to different hospitals across the country. The crash scattered debris and body parts across a kilometer radius, affecting a total of four villages around the airport. Boeing first sold the aircraft in 1985 to British Airways, for which it operated until late 2011. The plane was retired for being too uneconomical to operate, but was bought by Pakistani company Bhoja Air in serviceable conditions. Authorities continue to examine what may have caused the crash and the potential for additional casualties at the site of the wreckage.

photo by Muhammad Al-Rawi

Preparing for Romecoming: Junior Khaymen Hoelscher works on his Latin art project Friday, April 20. Students created pieces inspired by the phrase, “the deed which is begun is half done.”

Kirsten Buchanan


ast Saturday was Rome, Italy’s 2,764th birthday. It was also the second day of the 62nd annual Missouri Junior Classical League Convention, an event aimed toward Latin clubs. Twelve schools participated in contests, speeches and other Latin-themed activities. MOJCL honored James Meyer with the Teacher of the Year award. Meyer said while he felt privileged to receive the award, his real prize comes from the fulfillment he gives his students. Winning the award “was really nice,” Meyer said. “I’ve now been doing JCL for six years, and although I didn’t do it in high school. I’ve come to appreciate the role that it plays with some students that really get involved, so I’m glad I can contribute to that.” Many students received individual prizes from Latin tests they took in late March, including several who won first place. RBHS representatives junior Ouma Amadou and junior Khaymen Hoelscher also placed second out of 12 schools in Romecoming, a spirit contest with six rounds. The event featured multiple challenges, including a scavenger hunt and a myth acting portion. Although three years ago RBHS

won, the past two years they have lost in the first round of the competition, so Amadou was proud to simply make it to the finals. Romecoming “was a bit nerve-wracking at first because I kind of made a complete fool of myself, but overall it was fun. I was glad Rock Bridge did well,” Amadou said. “There were a couple times I thought we were going to lose, like during the sword fight or during the dance off. Our main goal at first was just to beat Hickman, and when we did that, we were like, ‘Well, we’re just going to try to do as best as we can.’” Students who take Latin also participated in Certamin, a competitive, Latin-themed quizbowl game. RBHS had three teams, a first-year, second-year and advanced team. In the past RBHS has advanced to the finals, but this year all three RBHS teams lost in the first round. Meyer said, however, he was not disappointed; despite the losses, watching his students was one of his favorite parts of the MOJCL convention. “I don’t even really care if our teams win. I love seeing the look on somebody’s face when they buzz in and get a question right; it’s a lot of fun,” Meyer said. “I love to win just like anybody else does, but [Certamin is] one of those rare times where I think there’s a minor victory in every question you ask because Latin’s a kind of intimating subject.”

Kelly Sports contract continues to profit photo used with permission from AP

Sudan launches attack on southern neighbor


eports surfaced from South Sudanese government officials on Monday indicating a Sudanese attack had taken place via ground troops and warplanes. The attack came just days after Sudan announced it would withdraw from the region after facing increasing pressures from the international community to avoid a full-scale war. However, the new reports indicate the fighting may not yet be over. On Monday Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir insisted in a speech that military action was necessary and that the South Sudanese “do not understand anything but the language of the gun and ammunition.” A Sudanese government official denied the attacks as “accusations” but said Sudan’s army was mobilizing because the South Sudanese were intruding on their area and supporting insurgents. The United States, the United Nations and the African Union condemned South Sudan for sending troops into the disputed region, though the nation considers the area part of its own land. South Sudan became an independent nation last year, the result of a 2005 peace accord that ended decades of fighting between the two peoples. sources:,

–Sami Pathan

story continued from page 1 Because marching band and concert band have different needs, the band department’s costs are scattered throughout the year. KSP aids the department through providing counseling for different purchases. There is no information for what will be available for the music departments in the fall, but Holt said, “It’s an evolving process.” Though KSP is searching for ways to help the music department, Whitesides said having new scoreboards for softball and baseball would be the next objective, as well as having closed-circuit boards at Hickman High School and RBHS. These television monitors would rotate bell schedules or afterschool events with advertisements at the bottom of the screen. However, this relies on the prevalence of advertisers. “Obviously the sales have to occur before [the plans] are definite because we have to have the money up front to be able to purchase those things and to be able to get those things going,” Whitesides said. “I just hope that it continues to grow. … Our budgets continue to be cut throughout the years, so we have to do some things that are more proactive than reactive.” Co-president of athletics booster club Paula Cunningham said the booster is supportive of

KSP because it helps athletics, but the booster club will continue fundraising without changing the way it runs since the club does not rely on advertising as a major revenue-generator. “It has not changed the way we do business because the majority of our money from year to year is provided by membership dues,” Cunningham said. “And then as the other source of revenue … [is] the sale of Rock Bridge apparel.” Holt said when such major changes arise, it takes time for people to grow accustomed to the idea. Cunningham said now people are more on board as parents and kids understand that KSP has been an improvement. “We expected some concerns because it’s not business as usual that we [KSP] are doing the fundraising,” Holt said, “but one of the things we have done for Columbia Public Schools is offer some equity, not only between the schools, but between the programs to where those groups that had very successful fundraising versus those that were not very successful, that created some problems for the school district as far as their concerns with equity funding and potential lawsuits down the road about how money was allocated to each one of these activities.”

It’s not business as usual that we [KSP] are doing the fundraising. ” Dan Holt Kelly Sports

CPS budget increases, new hires possible Sami Pathan


ate schools and 1.5 ELL teachers among the proposed 57 additional jobs. Of those, around 16 jobs could be spread around to secondary schools like RBHS. “We’ve been looking at needs for several years now, and with the levy passing we’re able to start to address some of those gaps,” Superintendent Chris Belcher said. “Some of those programs we’ve reduced from in the past we can start to add back to.” The costs behind the planned budget amount to $7.9 million, reducing reserves to just 12 percent by 2015, Chief Financial Officer Linda Quinley said. “The levy that was passed last week will raise about $7.8 million, and we plan to spend every penny of it,” Belcher said. “We do have fixed costs like any other organization, and if you figure all things equal, we’re going to be seeing a good chunk increase that we really don’t have a choice on.”



infographic by Joanne Lee

olumbia Public Schools is looking at the equivalent of a 57-employee increase thanks in part to the recent approvals of the bond and tax levy issues voted on in the April 3 municipal elections. The district expects a $3.4 million increase in its operating budget. The tax levy, which passed with a 56 percent majority, will increase property taxes by 40 cents for every $100 of assessed valuation. The funds will help offset declining state funding. The $50 million bond issue passed with 61 percent voter approval for a 12 cent debt service tax increase. The district will use these funds for building renovations and the construction of a new elementary school and learning center. However, the money will not be put to use before November 2014. “I think CPS needs the bond

issue and tax levy increase,” Michelle Shepard, a member of the Columbia Missouri National Education Association, said. “It’s time to eliminate trailers, repair our buildings and build schools.” The additional $3.4 million would aid the district’s salary schedule for its employees. Some employees, like paraprofessionals, custodial employees and nutrition services will see a 5.12 percent pay increase. The proposed budget would also restore some cuts in recent years where the district trimmed 260 positions and $20 million from its budget. RBHS lost the equivalent of 12 fulltime positions when student enrollment increased by 100, principal Mark Maus said. However, because of the district’s recent financial gains, CPS is looking to add 10 elementary school teachers to reduce overcrowding in classes, two school resource officers for intermedi-

District email, other technology remodel story continued from page 1 Eventually CPS puts the policies into action, resulting in accomplishments such as the unrestricting of certain websites students experienced this year. However, Nichols said in order to experience more changes, student opinions are essential. “This year it was really big for me that we were able to have YouTube unblocked because I think that’s an essential resource for people to use,” Nichols said. “But we’re looking for input from students. What kind of changes do they feel that we need to make to help you guys do better with your schoolwork?” Ideally, Nichols said, each school would send one student as a representative to the district committee meetings. To promote student participation next year, CPS will even take measure to relieve the pressure students may face in voicing their opinions in front of a crowd of educators by starting a group completely comprised of students and IITS representatives. This will allow students to present their true opinions without feeling pressured from their teachers who may have opposing viewpoints in the areas being discussed. “That’s something that we have on our radar for next year to start with,” Nichols said. “We just thought [students] might be more open if [they] didn’t have to feel pressured of saying something in front of your teachers. Like, if you think Facebook should be unblocked and your teachers are saying, ‘No,’ we thought it’d be a safer avenue for you to advocate for that. … I just wish we could have gotten it implemented this year, and we didn’t, so that’s definitely the first thing on the agenda for next year is to ask for representatives from all three high schools.” According to a survey by Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project in 2009, an average of 93 percent of American teenagers use the Internet, marking a 20 percent increase in nine years. A survey in February of this year found that 80 percent of American adults use the Internet, a six percent increase in two years. With the growing prevalence of Internet and technology, Murphy believes it is imperative for students to experience technology use in their education so they are better equipped for life and jobs after high school. “We live in a technological world,” Murphy said. “So if we’re not able to use those newer technologies to teach you, we’re not giving you the leg-up you need to move on and to be creative in a new world.”



How many stay in-state? According to the University of Missouri College Portrait, 79 percent of MU undergraduates are Missouri natives, while 18 percent are out-of-state and only two percent international. According to the National Center for Education Statistics: More than 77 percent of Missouri’s high school graduates in 2007 enrolled in public or private colleges in-state. Students from wealthier families are more likely to leave their state for college. Twice as many students from families with incomes over $100,000 went out-of-state as those from families earning $40,000 or less. Asians travel the farthest, while Hispanics stay the closest: 21 percent of Asian students attend college out-of-state, while less than seven percent of Hispanics leave their home state. Fourteen percent of African-Americans and 13 percent of whites attend college out of state.

Home, sweet h

College expands horizons; Columbia offe Thomas Jamieson-Lucy


hile some seniors prepare to leave the nest and begin the rest of their lives, others will remain here for the next four years. Those students will have to find a way to break out of the trapped feeling staying in the same place can create, the same feeling some of their peers are so desperate to escape. Guidance counselor Rachel Reed said for many of her students, staying in Columbia after high school is easy because of the familiarity with the University of Missouri-Columbia and the low cost of an in-state school. She said MU can be a great place for RBHS graduates, but they should be careful that the University does not just become an extension of high school and that it has the majors and programs they are interested in. She said MU can become a fallback option rather than where someone actually belongs. “For some students, they go to MU. They take advantage of not spending the money to stay in the dorms, so they live at home,” Reed said. “They choose classes that they know people from Rock Bridge who are going or from Hickman High School that are going to take the same classes, so I think it can be very easy to stay in the same friend circles and stay basically in high school even though you’re going to MU.” But senior David Morris does not believe MU will be restrictive. He said the safety net Columbia provides is a good thing. Having family living nearby and already knowing his way around town will provide more benefits to him than limitations, he said. “You’re really close to your family. If you need money or you forgot something you can go get it,” Morris said.

“College is what you make of it. If you go in with an open mind, then that’s what you’re going to get. You’re not going to be limited.” However, Morris acknowledges he will miss out on adjusting to a new place in a controlled environment such as a college campus. Instead, he won’t experience this until after college if he gets a job outside Columbia. In addition to this, he will have to live on his own, with no safety net. Developmen tal psychologist Nicole Campione-Barr said adolescents who move away for college must acquire skills such as time management and self-care for complete selfreliance more than those who stay close to home. However, she also said students far away from home are more likely to engage in risky behaviors such as drug and alcohol use. “While they might not be getting into as much potential trouble as their counterparts,” Campione-Barr said, “they are also not forced to take as much responsibility for themselves, nor are they engaging in a greater diversity of experiences from what they have encountered so far in life.” Morris does not foresee limitations in the next four years, but when he does end up leaving, he expects only minor consequences from being in Columbia for so long. He expects college

will allow him to see a new side of Columbia he has not experienced before. While Reed, who attended MU and lived at home, said this is possible, she said the most important thing for Columbia students going to MU was to get involved in extracurricular activities. She said MU can otherwise become a confining school that offers few new opportunities. “There are some student[s], though, who I’ve seen go to MU and completely make it their own experience,” Reed said. “Even if [they] live at home they’ve gotten really involved in organizations on campus, and they’ve made new friends, and they’ve found new passions, and they’ve really matured and grown up and have branched out from just the typical high school life.” For senior Emily Smith, leaving Columbia was a top factor in her college decision. She will be attending the University of Tulsa, which is a six­-hour drive from Columbia. Going to MU was never an option for her. “My entire life I’ve known that I wasn’t allowed to go to MU because my parents wanted me to try something new,” Smith said. “They didn’t want me to always be in Columbia my entire life, and that’s something I grew up being told, so it’s something I

College is what you make of it. If you go in with an open mind, then ... you’re not going to be limited.” David Morris senior


art by T



April 26, 2012


ers familiarity wanted for myself as well. I knew that I wanted to be someplace new and not just depend on my friends from high school.” Because Smith didn’t want to go to college with people she knew, she decided to go out of state. However, she believes not knowing anyone will be the toughest part for her to get used to at the beginning of next fall. “It will be weird that other people will know people and I won’t,” Smith said, “but that’s part of the reason that I [chose Tulsa] because I want that challenge to try something new, and I want to be out of my comfort zone because I think that’s what college is about.” Campione-Barr said one of the most important aspects of the college experience for adolescents is being exposed to new ideas. The skills that college students learn adjusting to a new place and making completely new friends will be needed later in life. “College often exposes emerging adults to many new people from a diverse variety of backgrounds and learning to socialize with a broader social circle will be helpful for making new, important friendships,” Campione-Barr said. “But [it] also will help them learn to work with people from diverse backgrounds later in adult contexts such as careers.” Smith is most excited about the opportunity to meet others, which she thinks will allow her to see the world with fresh eyes that staying in Columbia could not offer. “I’ll have to get used to new perspectives and new people,” Smith said. “I think it will force me to be openminded because not everybody loves Mizzou, and not everybody’s from Columbia, Mo., and not everybody has gone to school with me my entire life. It’s beneficial for me to meet all types of different people, so it will just be exciting.”

spare chains

Over-parenting impacts individuality Maddie Davis


s junior Abby Hake left her house to go to school, she shouted, ‘See you later, Mom’ before walking to her car. When pulling up to RBHS, Hake said her mother was not on her mind. During first and second hour, Hake focused on taking notes and studying for a chemistry test. However, by lunchtime, Hake’s attitude quickly went from content to frustrated. In the hallway, she spotted her mother, the last person she expected to see during her school day. Because of her involvement in the Bruin Cup committee, PTSA and ‘For the Love of the Game,’ Hake’s mom is often at RBHS. “My mom is incredibly involved with everything, so sometimes I’ll be walking through the hall, and I see her doing little errands around school,” Hake said. “I think she’s trying to relive her glory days, and sometimes I have to tell her to stop interfering in my life at school so much.” Even though Hake worries her mom is too involved, Kay Hake disagrees. Her help is directed more at the teachers than her daughter. “I help out at Rock Bridge because I believe the teachers are overworked and underpaid,” Kay said. “I think it affected [Abby] more at the junior high level because in junior high everything embarrasses you a little more. Once she got a little older then she learned that I was just helping out and doing it for her own good.” Just as Abby wants to separate life between her mother and herself, associate professor of sociology at the University of Missouri-Columbia Wayne Brekhus agrees it is important for teenagers to develop on their own. “Anecdotally, I see [the parents’] effects as negative because they don’t allow their teenagers to learn and develop important skills on their own, and they bail them out

of consequences so that they don’t have to learn fully from their mistakes,” Brekhus said. “The even bigger effect is that overparented teenagers often don’t take responsibility for everyday tasks — balancing budgets, handling problems themselves — because they know Mom or Dad will do it for them.” Despite the possible negative outcome, senior Sami Johnson does not see anything wrong with the close relationship she shares with her parents. As an only child, Johnson is used to her parents being occupied with her life more than their own. “I think my mom lives for my life. She loves to hear about all the drama and events that goes on in my friend group,” Johnson said. “It always gives me someone to talk to, so I definitely don’t see it as a bad thing. Sometimes she thinks my friends are more of her friends, but she makes my life a lot easier because she is always there to help me and give me advice.” Although Johnson is used to her parents doing a lot for her, she feels their bond has not lessened her ability to make decisions and take responsibility for herself. “I still function like someone whose parents aren’t as involved,” Johnson said. “It’s just nice to know that I have two people in my life who can help me make decisions if I need them. Both of my parents can tell when I need help, and I’m appreciative of that. Like last year when I had cheer tryouts then my mom could tell I was really nervous, so she helped me practice and helped me get it together.” Unlike Johnson, junior Duyen Tran is used to her parents overstepping their bounds. Because of their Vietnamese background, Tran’s parents have struggled to find a balance between their traditional culture and the American way of life. “Until I was about 15, my parents wouldn’t let me have sleepovers. They’re OK with people coming over to our house, but usually they wouldn’t let me go over to friends’ houses,” Tran said. “It’s something

about purity, and since I’m a girl then I’m not supposed to go over to other people’s houses.” Though her parents have been restrictive, Tran has noticed them relax more with time. According to www.miller-mccune. com, 60 percent of Asian-American parents teach their preschoolers reading and writing because they see their children as “seedlings that need help growing.” Although it is still difficult for her to make plans, Tran has a better grasp on their parenting style than she did when she was younger. “I didn’t understand why they wouldn’t let me go to friends’ houses because I grew up in America, so I saw all my friends going to sleepovers,” Tran said. “My friends were inviting me over for stuff, and I didn’t get why I couldn’t. I would question their reasoning and motives, but now that I’m growing and they’re adapting to society more, I think they figured they couldn’t be so old-school anymore.” Because of the advancing society, Brekhus relates the main problem with over-parenting to technology. Texting has allowed parents and their children to keep in touch even when they are not together. “I think helicopter parents are far more common today. Technology makes 24/7 availability a real possibility, and it means that parents really can hover over their teenagers constantly,” Brekhus said. “When I was a teenager, you told your parents where you were going, when you’d be back, and if you were going to be late you had to find a payphone and call them.” While the use of cell phones can be negative, Johnson’s viewpoints differ from Brekhus’. In case Johnson faces a difficult situation, her parents are just a few moments away. “My mom and my dad both text me a lot throughout the day to see what I’m doing later and stuff like that,” Johnson said. “It’s good because I know that my parents are there for me regardless of whether I’m with them or not.”

Helicopter parents hover past high school

Nearly one in three parents submits a résumé on behalf of his children, according to the Collegiate Employment Research Institute at Michigan State University. A study at Bowling Green State University found students emailed their parents about six times a week on average. Students from authoritative families asked for advice the most, while students from families which had emphasized independence contacted their parents more often but asked for less advice. College freshmen with helicopter parents were more dependent and neurotic, according to a survey by Keene State College. A study on helicopter parents from Indiana University revealed that while parental involvement can lead to higher levels of “engagement and self-reported gains in college,” too much parental involvement can be “associated with lower grades.” all infographics by Nomin-Erdene Jagdagdorj and Maddie Magruder

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Op/Ed ∙ 13

April 26, 2012


China shows historic value Adam Schoelz



here is a certain flavor to Beijing, China, a taste in the air, that is wrought with age. Granted, it’s also wrought with smog and cigarette smoke — smoking is far more common in China than here, especially in Beijing, but transcending the pollution is the age of the thing, and it infects the air. There is so much history that it runs together — a building younger than 500 years old is of no special significance, and a decade is nothing. So when I was in China, moving about the city and the country, a question sprang to mind: how does something so overrun with history deal with the advent of modern technology? China is a country recovering from war with itself. Not a typical war with blood and guts and valor, but a cultural clash between the forces of surging modernism and three thousand years of history. It’s quite a sight. Like I said, there are the ancient temples and fast food restaurants in a rather classic juxtaposition, but the conflict goes beyond what can be physically seen. One could boil it down to something as simple as technology versus culture, but that far oversimplifies. China, over the last two decades, has thawed out in terms of culture, government and industry. Today, it is struggling to come to terms with that thaw — to grip its past firmly in hand while also trying to adapt to globalization of pretty much everything. The Temple of Heaven, for instance, once a private and sacred sanctum of the gods, now is a park for all to enjoy. While the government of China struggled to embrace past and present simultaneously, I found that the people of the country readily accepted both. So when I boarded the flight from Beijing to Detroit to leave the country on a sunny Saturday morning, I stared out across the tarmac at Beijing International and turned the idea over in my head. After that I settled in for the journey. The flight is 12 hours, which could be painfully long, but this was alleviated by the fact that our plane was quite new and had quite a few movies to enjoy individually. I found myself drawn to one movie in particular: “The Artist.” If you don’t know the premise, “The Artist” tells the story of (fictional) silent movie actor George Valentin, at the end of his era. As new ‘talkies’ begin to take over the film industry, Valentin begins to lose his sense of place. At the same time, young actress Peppy Miller begins to rise through the ranks to become a star in movies with sound. It’s a movie about transitions, about passing the baton and forgetting to remember who passed it. Naturally, after my week in China watching old and new conflict, the movie’s themes resonated with me. In one scene reporters are interviewing Miller, and she says something to the effect of old actors hold back young ones. At this Valentin stands and leaves, saying, “I’ve gotten out of your way.” It struck me this was not what I had observed in China. In China time was not discrete. The old had not moved out of the way because there was simply too much of it to move. The government of China tried in the ‘60s and failed. So they learned instead, and they began to live with the past. The United States does not accept the past as readily. Here, we tend to argue over the past, fighting over who was right and wrong, and instead of taking away the lessons of history, we enter mortal combat over the honor of our ancestors. Over time, history splits groups, when they should be knit together. I do not condemn those to whom the gaps created by time are frightening. What I do condemn is devaluing the experiences of the past. While freedom of information is nonexistent in China, and the government still restricts access to political viewpoints beyond its control, the population at large seems at peace with the past. The Forbidden City is a tourist destination and the Temple of Heaven a public park. Perhaps because there is so much of it, the past in China is nothing unusual or exotic. Sure, there are some sore spots, such as the Tiananmen Square Massacre or the Opium Wars, but all in all, the Chinese have learned to live with the past. There is so much past in China that they have found it easier to simply deal then fight it. Here, in this young country, we go with the second option. People seek to bury the past when what they should seek is synthesis. The past, like anything else, cannot be ignored, nor can it be changed. It is useless to try. What it can be is accepted, and a la “The Artist,” a la China, it is evident that this is the best option. Without an acceptance of the past, we will be consumed by it.


Rock Bridge High School 4303 South Providence Rd., Columbia, Mo. 65203-1798 Vol. 39. Issue 7 The Journalism: Newspaper and Honors Seminar classes produce The ROCK. Call us with comments at 573-214-3141. The ROCK’s purpose is to inform, educate, enlighten and entertain readers fairly and accurately in an open forum.

Pregnancy prevention Government should provide birth control


y age 45, half of all women will have experienced an unintended pregnancy, according to the Guttmacher Institute. These unplanned pregnancies have serious consequences. The Minnesota Department of Health reported that such pregnancies have negative outcomes for both infants and parents. Infants are more likely to be abused and die in their first year of life. Meanwhile, parents must cope with reduced education and career attainment, an increased d e p e n d e n c y on welfare and heightened risk for divorce or domestic abuse. Unintended pregnancy is clearly a larger social issue than it seems on the surface, but increasing access to female birth control would easily resolve the problem. While The Washington Post reported 70 percent of insurance policies provide coverage for erectile dysfunction medication, few policies provide equal coverage for birth control. Instead, women must pay $180 to $600 a year for birth control medication, according to Planned Parenthood, with only a few

institutions, like DePaul University in Chicago, providing insurance coverage. Birth control also has many purposes other than contraception. According to a study Rachel K. Jones of the Guttmacher Institute conducted, 14 percent of women use the pill solely for non-contraceptive purposes, such as for reducing cramps and menstrual pain, menstrual regulation, acne treatment and to reduce endometriosis, where cells from the lining of the uterus grow outside of the uterine cavity. Fifty-eight percent of women use birth control for these reasons along with contraception, and studies from the National Cancer Institute and the National Institute of Health show using the pill decreases the risk of ovarian and endometrial cancer. Fortunately, the Obama Administration’s Affordable Care Act provides a solution to the unavailability of birth control medication. A mandate related to birth control would require all employers to provide their female employees’ insurance coverage for preventive care services. The administration estimated cost per year to be about $360 per person,

The ROCK staff voted YES-30 NO-4 on government allowing easier access to birth control

which is lower than the current median price of $390. By increasing access to contraceptives, the United States will additionally save more than $11 billion a year solely from preventing unwanted teen pregnancies, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. While the bill has received criticism for allegedly infringing upon first amendment rights like freedom of religion, these claims are illegitimate. All houses of worship are exempt. Religiously affiliated universities and hospitals, however, still must provide health insurance for their employees. The Affordable Care Act’s birth control mandate is a laudable start to improving the availability of birth control. By making employers pay for insurance coverage, it places women on equal ground with men who have no difficulty receiving coverage for erectile dysfunction treatment. In doing so, the government will also cut down on the number of unwanted pregnancies and, more importantly, the number of women who die each year from complications related to an illegal abortion. The birth control mandate is another step in the right direction for health care in the United States. In this political year, as presidential and senatorial elections loom in the near future, voters should avoid a knee-jerk reaction when filling out ballots. Don’t simply stay within party lines — consider what’s best for public

Technology proves distracting Jude El-Buri


s I sit on the couch, staring at the blank white computer screen, waiting for a thesis to pop magically into my head, I see a small square of light appear in my peripheral. I look over to see the blue notification: Words With Friends: “Your Move with cookiemonster166.” My hand involuntarily moves toward my iPod, and before I know it, I’ve spent 10 minutes calculating every possible move I can make and the highest point value I can get. I’ve spent 10 minutes obsessing about how many times I can hit a TW and deciding if it’s smarter to save my 10-point Z’s or Q’s for a better word. If it’s not Words With Friends stealing my attention, then it’s some other game. The haunting tiki head of Temple Run stares at me and taunts me to play. I puzzle over the intricate drawings of my friends on Draw Something and slowly play my own equally

The ROCK is a member of the Columbia Scholastic Press Association and International Quill and Scroll. Advertising is $55 for a quarter page, $95 for a half page and $130 for a whole page. The ROCK accepts letters from students, teachers and community members signed with a valid signature only. The ROCK reserves the right to edit contributions if they are libelous, obscene or invasive of a person’s privacy. Any

intricate drawing. And of course, I can’t stand the temptations of Angry Birds. I think of all the work I should be doing while my hand rhythmically pulls the slingshot back and releases. Eventually I drag my attention back to the computer. With no plan for a thesis whatsoever, I decide to get some inspiration. I pop open a new tab and head off to the wonderful land of YouTube. I start out watching a funny Super Bowl commercial, then spend hours getting linked from video to video and end up watching keyboard cat. Eventually my mom notices me laughing hysterically with myself and asks just what it was that is so funny about my homework. How it was that I started out writing a paper on Lincoln’s Second

Inaugural Address and ended up watching videos of cats playing the keyboard? With no reason for watching the video, I return to the blank white screen. It’s the smartphones, the iPods, the social networking sites that lead me astray when I’m trying to get something of importance done. I can waste hours of my day without even realizing it. I become absorbed in my games and forget about the real world. I could text my sister who’s living across the world, but instead of being connected, I’m distant. Now I would rather text people than call them or talk face-to -face. I can put things in my notes or my calendar and set alarms to get organized. But instead of being organized, I’m flustered in trying to do a million things at once and reliant on my device to

I become absorbed in my games and forget about the real world.”

grammatical errors at the fault of the writer will be printed. Editors-in-Chief: Avantika Khatri, Jack Schoelz, Shivangi Singh News Editor: Sami Pathan Community Editor: Maria Kalaitzandonakes Features Editor: Kirsten Buchanan Personality Profiles Editor: Maddie Davis In-Depths Editor: NominErdene Jagdagdorj Editorials Editor: Walter Wang

Commentary Editor: Abbie Powers Athlete Profiles Editor: Caraline Trecha Sports Editor: Emily Wright Arts & Entertainment Editor: Sonya Francis Design Editor: Jackie Nichols Art Editor: Joanne Lee Artists: Kelly Brucks, Anna Sheals, Theresa Whang Photography Editor: Halley Hollis Photographers: Muhammad AlRawi, Asa Lory, Anna Sheals

tell me what I’m supposed to do. Although I hated it when people did it, I noticed myself slowly starting to do the same. I would text while my mom talked to me. I remember how rude I thought the people who did that were. And now, I’m slowly being sucked into the same virtual world. As convenient and fun smartphones and tablets are to my everyday life, they’ve become a distraction. I’ve finally learned to delete most apps that distract me from work. I don’t text while someone is talking to me, and I’ve restricted myself from distracting websites while I’m trying to work. I’ll put the phones, the iPods and the tablets away and sit with people. I’ll live in the real world and do one thing at a time. I’ll take my life slowly and live it to the fullest. Instead of relying on my phone for reminders, I’ll sticky note it on the fridge. Instead of talking to the wonderful robot named Siri, I’ll look my mother in the eyes and have a nice conversation.

Chief Financial Officer: Rose McManus Online Editors: Parker Sutherland, Daphne Yu Staff Writers: Blake Becker, Alex Burnam, Jude El-Buri, Shannon Freese, Nadav Gov-Ari, Thomas Jamieson-Lucy, Maddie Magruder, Kaitlyn Marsh, Isaac Pasley, Mike Presberg, Lauren Puckett, Adam Schoelz, Alyssa Sykuta, Mahogany Thomas, Alexa Walters, Luke Wyrick Adviser: Robin Fuemmeler Stover

14 ∙ Ads


April 26, 2012

Athlete Profiles ∙ 15

April 26, 2012


Ford Zitsch

By the


Current Record


Fastest Serve Speed 127 mph First Serve Percentage 70% Avg. Daily Practice Time 3 hours photo by Muhammad Al-Rawi

Mad hitter: Senior Ford Zitsch prepares to hit a tennis ball with precision. After spending a year at Blue Hills Tennis Academy learning to perfect his game, he returns to RBHS before playing at the collegiate level.

Changing courts in order to perform Caraline Trecha


uggling three different sports wasn’t doing it for senior Ford Zitsch. He wanted one sport to focus on and become perfect at. At 11, he decided to give up other sports to focus on just tennis. “I had a lot of potential in tennis, and I really liked how it was individual,” Zitsch said. “I like working with my teammates but also focusing on my individual game, too.” Zitsch occasionally misses his past sports, but tennis offered a better opportunity. Practicing tennis every day and with his coaches and teammates helps Zitsch work on his form and accuracy. Not only does dedication to his chosen sport show in practices and matches, but also off the court. “Ford, in my opinion, is the best high school player to come out of Columbia,” coach Ben Loeb said. “His athletic

ability and dedication to the ing his junior year of high school, sport is unmatched by others.” where he got to live in Kansas Not only does his coach City with his sister and attend think Zitsch is a hard-work- the Blue Hills Tennis Academy. ing tennis player with poten“It’s a mystery how good I tial, his teammates do as well. could be,” Zitsch said, “so I put “He hits every in effort on and shot with speoff the court to cific purpose and hopefully find Ford, in my is always trying out what there opinion, is the to improve some is and be happy part of his game and successful.” best high school regardless of the While conplayer to come type of environtinuing his high out of Columbia.” school educament he is in,” senior Jack Fay said. tion online, When he isn’t Zitsch trained Ben Loeb training with the for a semester Bruins as their with nationally tennis coach No. 1 player, he’s ranked playworking with ers Trey Danpersonal trainiel and Alex ers or competFennel which ing in individual tournaments Zitsch said helped to push through the United States Ten- him further in tennis. nis Association and InterEven though online classes national Tennis Federation. aren’t normal for the average Since freshman year, Zitsch junior, Zitsch said he didn’t has dreamed of going to a tennis sacrifice his education much school. It finally worked out dur- since they still kept him busy.

“A normal day went like this: woke up pretty late like about 10, ran two to three miles, ate lunch, played tennis from about one to four, got a break, then played again from like 5:30 to 7:30, then ate dinner and did online school,” Zitsch said. “I don’t feel like I missed out on the normal high school year because I am not too social outside of school, so it didn’t really affect me.” Zitsch returned to play his senior year for RBHS. Although he’s currently working on his individual and doubles game, he’s also focusing on his future career. Deciding where he was going to continue playing wasn’t easy for Zitsch. Among several universities, he found the University of Nebraska to be the best option. “I’d like to take my tennis career as far as it can go,” Zitsch said. “After college I don’t know how good I’ll be, but I want to improve and be as good as I can be. I do a lot of practicing and training so that I can reach my potential, but I am unclear of what that is.”

National Ranking


Started Competitively Age 10

Zitsch at State The Last Three Years YEAR








infographic by Anna Sheals and Jack Schoelz

16 ∙ Sports

April 26, 2012


New talent aids tennis

KU Relays ignite focus

Thomas Jamieson-Lucy

Emily Wright



hen junior Hailey King qualified with her 4x100 meter relay team for the finals April 20 at the Kansas Relays with a time of 50.65, she was elated. Not only did her team beat some of the best of Midwest high school track at a prestigious meet, but the relay team also came within half a second of the school record which was set in 1979. However, the preliminary race was the first time 4x100 meter relay members junior Sienna Trice, sophomore Madison Wipfler, junior Christina Oyelola and King had ever competed together as a relay. This inexperience with the event became evident in the finals as faulty handoffs during the race added nearly a second to their qualifying time, leading them to finish eighth. But King remains positive despite the mistakes. Having a competitive race under their belt, she believes she and her teammates on the 4x100 can learn from experience and eliminate their imperfections during the weeks leading to the post season. “We will build off of our performances,” King said. “For the 4x100 we are going to work on handoffs because that is the main thing that we need to improve. We are just going to work harder and get more focused.” At this point in the season, head coach Neal Blackburn said the bulk of the training has been accomplished. In the two weeks preceding the district meet in Jefferson City, Blackburn plans to give his athletes fine-tuning workouts that will perfect their runs, sprints, jumps and throws. “We still have a lot ahead of us,” Blackburn said. “We have hit a plateau in some of our performances, and that’s where the sharpening is really going to start to cause us to run faster, drop times and to have better marks in some of the field events.” With the increased intensity comes the necessity for an increased focus. In the mile and two mile races last weekend, junior Nathan Keown realized he will have to work on his race strategy in order to run faster times. With faster competition than he is used to, runners encircled him during his races, making it difficult to surge ahead and run with his full potential. The two mile “was such a crowded race,” Keown said. “It made me realize that I have to position myself better early on. You have eight laps, and I got stuck in the back, and it was hard to move because there were so many bodies around. Focus is something we are going to work on at [the Dale Collier invitational]. It really matters now.” Blackburn emphasized that his team members must carry out its intensity into its everyday life, which they do through sleep, hydration and proper nutrition in addition to practicing hard. With that attitude, both the boys and girls teams hope to capture district championships in two weeks. “We will begin to switch our focus from regular track meets to the championship type track meets,” Blackburn said. “Practices start to get a little more intense, but they don’t last quite as long. You’ll notice that we start to get a little more rest. This is the time in the season when we want to feel fast and fresh.” The Bruin track team will compete next against class four St. Louis teams 9 a.m. Saturday, April 28 at the Dale Collier Invitational at Kirkwood High School, where it hopes to outperform defending meet champion, Kirkwood.

photos by Halley Hollis

Practice makes perfect: Seniors Alyssa Fancher (left top and bottom) and Lexi Bumby work on tricks Wednesday, April 18. The girls soccer team will face Pembroke Hill at 5 p.m. tomorrow at Hickman High School.

Battling the odds Soccer squad eliminates C-team, faces rain-outs Maddie Davis


s senior Lexi Bumby laced up her cleats for the first Lady Bruin soccer game of the season, she felt prepared to take on the Rolla Bulldogs. But just as soon as the excitement began, disappointment replaced it. Due to rain, the game was cancelled. Since March 16, the varsity team has faced three more cancellations. “It’s kind of frustrating because we get really excited to play and then it starts raining and the games get cancelled,” Bumby said. “When the games get cancelled, then we normally just practice.” Sophomore player Alexus Carson agrees the weather issues cause an annoyance. But Carson has found an upside to the lack of games. “We have more time to bond with the team and all the girls,” Carson said. “We get to practice more before facing an opponent. It’s good to have more time to work together.” Despite the extra practice time, Carson believes DATE the team’s connection could be 3-16 better. Because there were not a large number of 3-20 girls at tryouts, the C-team was 3-21 cut leading to a much younger JV team. 3-22 “It’s really

hard for our team to come together because we don’t know each other that well,” Carson said. “The freshmen go to a completely different school so sometimes the sophomores and freshmen kind of separate. But not having a C-team is just one less team to worry about because they were kind of a drag in the past.” Just as Carson believes the age difference of JV provides problems, coach Kyle Austin agrees the talent pool is challenging to manage. With a more diverse team, it is difficult to pinpoint what skills need to be improved and how to challenge the girls. “I think [not having a Cteam] greatly affects not just the [JV] but also the varsity because when you have fewer players in the program obviously that’s going to dilute the talent pool quite a bit, and so what used to be the JV players playing with similar abilities, similar age groups and similar soccer skills is now combined into two dif-

Game cancellations

ferent age groups,” Austin said. “It can be frustrating at times, and it can be tough at practices to make sure that everyone is involved and everyone is being challenged because the skills are so spread out.” While Carson believes communication is difficult for the JV team, Bumby believes that is where the varsity girls thrive. Even with the connection, though, the Lady Bruins have struggled to adjust to the new formations. “Last year we played a 4-4-2 formation, and this year we’ve been trying to switch to a 3-52. We’ve played the best when we played the 4-4-2 formation because that’s what we’re used to,” Bumby said. “We’ve been doing well figuring out how to connect, and now our focus is getting the new formations down so we can continue to play with those.” Despite the slight confusion related to the change to a 3-5-2 structure and younger team, the varsity record remains 5-2. “We still have a really strong defense and an equally strong offense,” Bumby said. “It’s important that we REASON have both because we help each other RAIN in all aspects. Even though there are a lot of new things RAIN this year to the team, we’re just as RAIN strong and on top of our game as preRAIN vious years if not better.”

2012 season

OPPONENT Rolla Lee’s Summit Lee’s Summit Raytown

infographic by Anna Sheals and Emily Wright

late start to the season due to inclement weather in addition to losing five varsity seniors from last year has not diminished the confidence of the boys tennis team. Even with a young team, the overall goal remains the same: to win state for the third year in a row. “We have some players that I think have a lot of potential, so we are kind of replacing experience with potential as much as anything,” coach Ben Loeb said. “We’re hoping we can make the transition and still have just as good a team.” In order to make up for lost time at the beginning of the season, junior Alex Jones said the team is practicing by facing off against each other. Even though the team missed two matches, Jones believes it won’t cause them any problems. However, one duel missed was against Rockhurst, one of the best teams in the state. Since they will be unable to make up the match against Rockhurst, the only time the team members will see them is in the state tournament. Loeb said missing this duel was not ideal. “You hope in [the state tournament] that [a late start] doesn’t affect you,” Loeb said. “In the immediate time [our ability] is a bit of an unknown given that one of those duels was Rockhurst, our biggest rival at the state level. I wish we could have gotten the whole thing in. That would have given us a better indication of where we are relative to each other, but we didn’t.” RBHS will have to rely on the talent of the less experienced players toward the end of the varsity line up. Already the team’s younger players have displayed their talent by helping the team defeat Lafayette and Parkway Central. Jones said the best way to get the younger players prepared is to keep the focus high in practice in order to prepare them for important matches in the post season. “At practice we have a high level of intensity. We show them what to do, what we’ve been doing,” Jones said. “We’ve known each other for a long time, so they know what we do and how we do it.” New to varsity, freshman Rohit Rao said stepping up to face more experienced players wasn’t going to be easy. But he thinks if he continues to work hard in practice he will be ready for any competition he faces with help from older players on the team. The upperclassmen “are a delightful bunch. They’re very helpful and encouraging” by showing him what it takes to play with more experienced players, Rao said. The most difficult part is “handling adversity, but I’ve just go to stay focused.” Jones believes the familiarity of the young players with the work ethic necessary to be part of Bruin tennis will allow them to bridge the experience gap between last year’s and this year’s team. He said if they focus on continuing to practice the way they have for the last two years and play well in the finals they should get a state championship. However, Loeb stressed result-oriented goals like winning a trophy were not all he wanted his players to focus on. He also wanted them to have goals related to their everyday performance in practice. “I don’t want us to just have outcome goals,” Loeb said. “I want us to have goals on going about it the right way at practice, taking pride in being as good as we can be and playing with confidence when we need it most. Those types of performance goals will improve the chances of us achieving the outcome goal we want to achieve.” The team’s next match will be at 12 p.m. tomorrow in St. Louis when it begins play in the Tournament of Champions.

Sports ∙ 17

April 26, 2012


Baseball team seeks revenge in post season Isaac Pasley


photo by Asa Lory

Splitting the fairway: Junior Tyler Bales tees off at the Country Club of Missouri golf course during practice Wednesday, April 18, to prepare for districts. Read about last night’s district tournament on Bearing News. Head coach Doug Daniels said the large talent pool on the team has pushed the varsity players to perform well.

Utilizing their depth

Golfers push each other during matches, practice Kaitlyn Marsh


fter two weeks of straight golf, counting strokes and keeping averages, senior Harry Schauwecker ranked eighth out of his 10 teammates in the varsity and JV roster for the first tournaments of the season, after consistently playing the sixth to eighth spots as a junior. The rank came as a disappointment to Schauwecker, who is a returning player. Making the eighth spot “could be surprisingly good because I hadn’t golfed in a while because of wrestling and football season, and it could be surprisingly bad because I expected more out of myself,” Schauwecker said. “I feel like I’m better than what I was playing.” A somewhat unsatisfied Schauwecker surprised himself by shooting a 73, three over par round at the Columbia Classic at A.L. Gustin golf course during the first tournament of the year on April 3, tying for third place individually. Schauwecker is just an example of the majority of the golfers being

on the same playing field in terms of ability, but it is up to how hard they are willing to work for that varsity position. According to head coach Doug Daniels, the boys golf team might contain much more depth that it has in previous years, giving them the chance at a successful season. “On some days the number seven player will beat the number three player, so it’s pretty competitive,” Daniels said. “We are pretty deep, and after [numbers one and two, seniors] Will [Echelmeier] and Austin [Evans], it’s pretty close competition down to my tenth or twelfth guy, and they’re all scrambling around for spots.” On a varsity, JV and C-team of four seniors, three juniors, four sophomores and five freshmen, the competition is intense. For returning players, Daniels granted immunity to the possibility of being cut, but the battle between the individuals for spots was when the fun really began, where one player pushed another to his full playing potential. “We obviously lost talent since [the seniors last year] were on varsity, but we’ve got talent that is just

as good and a lot younger, so we’ve got a lot of room to grow,” junior Alex Henderson said. “There’s going to be a lot more competition this year for spots and varsity because last year we had five guys that were on varsity all year long.” Earlier in April, Daniels held a playoff between five potential players for the last spot on the varsity line-up, pitting the experienced team members and newbies against each other for some healthy competition. “Frankly, [golf is] pretty much a selfish endeavor, kind of every man for himself. … Every guy supports each other to a degree, but they’re not going to get knocked out of the top five,” Daniels said. “It makes it tough for me because I want to make sure the best five players are on varsity. I want to make sure that all those kids feel like they’ve been given a fair shot and that they are being treated fairly.” First-year golfer junior Todd Hague said he doesn’t feel put down by the experienced players. Never having made the team before this year, Hague supports his fellow athletes while still striving

for the best spot he can secure as a first-timer. “I think there is a lot of drive with the new players because we all shoot for the best spots on the team,” Hague said. “It all comes down to who can shoot the best no matter what, so I feel like there’s a lot of competition on the team, but we all work as one in a match.” After a few weeks to prepare for the post-season after a long winter, Daniels solidified his top five for yesterday’s district and next week’s section tournament to possibly have a crack at a second consecutive state title May 14th and 15th. Although Rockhurst has been a strong competitor in consistently scoring lower than the Bruins, Daniels is confident in his team’s ability. “You lose people, but the kids that are younger get to move [up] and get more experience,” Daniels said. “For [RBHS alumni] Wilson Sunvold and Tyler Kolb you lost, you get Will Echelmeier with another year of experience and [sophomore] Jackson Dubinski with another year of experience, … and they are going to get better. You just kind of expect that.”

JV Spotlight Joanna Zhang

What has been your biggest accomplishment this season? Nate Horvit

Tyler Hill

sophomore tennis

sophomore track

Connor McCarty

junior baseball

Baseball district championship results

Lauren Jamieson

The past Three years

sophomore soccer

sophomore golf

uring the fourth inning of a tied game against Lafayette-Wildwood with two runners on base, the boys on the baseball team had some doubts about their ability to win. Then senior Beau Burkett stepped up to the plate. With a pronounced “ping” of the ball ricocheting off a metal bat, the ball soared into left field for a two run double, giving the team the upper hand to win the game. Despite the confidence gained from moments like this, memories of last season’s disappointing district loss are still looming. Following a 2-1 season ending loss in 2011 to a 15-10 Timberland team in the district championship, the Bruins were devastated. This year, they have made an effort to not to think of any game as an automatic win. So far, the new mentality seems to be working well. The baseball team has a 15-3 record, and its only three losses this year have come within a one-run margin. The Bruins have won five of their last six games, and with seven games left, head coach Justin Towe said they have a promising future in store. “We could very easily be” undefeated right now, Towe said. “We are getting better every day, which is what you want to see in a high school season.” Burkett has led this season’s improvement. Since his impressive game winning run against Lafayette-Wildwood, Burkett has kept his hitting streak hot. He went two for three with two RBI’s in Friday’s 9-0 win over Lebanon, and on Saturday, Burkett went one for one with two RBIs in a 9-6 victory against Camdenton. The pitching has been standout as well, with Ryan Schmidt allowing only one hit in a complete game shutout Friday against Lebanon. Although the baseball team feels successful right now, both Towe and his players know that before the team can go to the postseason, there is work to be done. The regular season ends against Fatima High School May 8, one day before the start of district playoffs. Towe said his players have put an emphasis on improving hitting skills to make the most of the season. “We aren’t swinging the bats as consistently up and down the lineup as good as I would like,” Towe said. “However, it is early, and we are still winning games, which means we have a lot of time to get that going.” Despite having ambitious goals of winning the district and state championships, Towe recognizes the importance of not looking too far ahead of the next game or practice. “I am from the school of thought that every game is a big game. We have talked all year long about trying to get as many wins as we possibly can in order to have a chance at the No. 1 seed in the district tourney,” Towe said. However, “you don’t want to be playing your best baseball right now. I think that is quite possibly what happened last year. We may have peaked a little early.” Even though the baseball players focus short-term on maintaining a strong winning record and getting the most out of each practice, they are still thinking about the district tournament. They believe a combination of short- and long-term goals will give them the right balance of confidence and humility to perform well in the post season. “We were really good last year, and we just kind of underestimated our opponent,” said senior Kory McDonald, a third baseman. Because of that, “We’re not doing that at all this year.”

YEAR OPPONENT SCORE “I got a stress fracture last season in my right shin, so this season my coach and I have just been really careful with not pushing it too much, but pushing it enough for me to get better. That’s been pretty great.”

“My biggest accomplishment this year was finishing second in the best ball [tournament] with my teammate.”

“I think my biggest accomplishment was beating [senior Ford Zitsch] 0-4. He gave me a lot of trouble in the second set but I came back and got him, so I was really happy about that.”

“I’m captain of the junior varsity team. It’s an honor because only two people get to be captain.”

“This season I feel like I have been bonding more with my teammates, like most of the older guys that I didn’t know as well. I feel like I’m better friends with them.”

2009 Hickman 5-3 WIN 2010


6-3 WIN

2011 Timberland 1-0 LOSS photos by Halley Hollis art by Anna Sheals and Emily Wright

art by Anna Sheals and Emily Wright

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April 26, 2012


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Arts & Entertainment ∙ 19

April 26, 2012


Paint party generates excitement Maddie Davis


n April 28 the DAYGLOW L!fe In Color tour will be at the Midway Expo Center. Starting at 7 p.m., a mixture of AN21 beats and continuous paint blasts will ensure that concert-goers will have an exciting time. DAYGLOW’s main purpose is to cover attendees in loads of paint while blasting dubstep music, possibly deafening anyone in the venue. AN21, whose real name is Antoine Josefsson, began his musical dubstep career after seeing his brother, a member of The Swedish House Mafia, perform at a Swedish club. Similar to his brother’s more well-known group, AN21 has lots of bass drops, being energetic and putting a new spin on tradi-

tional “house music.” Because of his loud consistent bass builds, AN21 will complement the liveliness DAYGLOW has to offer. AN21 has remixed songs from popular artists such as Switchfoot, Kaskade and Ellie Goulding into lively electronic mixes. In the past DAYGLOW has featured more well-known artists such as Steve Aoki and Laidback Luke (Turbulence) and Roger Sanchez (2gether). While he may not be as recognizable as similar DJ’s, AN21’s performance should live up to prior DAYGLOW entertainers. With AN21’s upbeat remixes, DAYGLOW will have no problem keeping the crowd pumped through the five-hour event. What started in 2006 as “The World’s Largest Paint Party” at a Florida college campus has now turned into an international show. Past tours have taken the paint extravaganza to London, Melbourne and Cancun.

Since Columbia is a much smaller venue than those cities, it is important to take advantage of the DAYGLOW spectacular. While DAYGLOW’s locations have grown, the technology of the event has also expanded. In 2010 the “DAYGLOW 3D” tour pushed boundaries by giving concert-goers 3D glasses for body paint with 3D effects and visuals shown through screen. Because of the new levels DAYGLOW continues to present, the Midway Expo Center will have multiple surprises and a lot of clean up. At every concert there are also spectacles like stilt-walkers, soaring aerial acts and fire shows. These different acts help the musician lead up to the much-anticipated “paint blast.” Then, multiple cannons blast paint all over the venue and the people inside. A giant countdown for the largest paint blast is on stage, to keep everyone entertained and ready for the excitement. The giant blasts cover everyone there in neon paints, which is the whole point of the concert.

Because of the raging music and crowd of more than 1,000, the concert will be loud, hot and very messy. However, the excitement of the paint party will overcome any amount of stains and all the craziness. In fact, the chaos of flying paint and lack of space will complement what DAYGLOW is about. Washing all the paint off may not be an easy job, but the paint blasts and AN21’s music will make it all worth it.

What: Dayglow L!fe in color Who: AN21 When: April 28, 7 p.m. Where: Midway Expo Center art by Joanne Lee

Today in the music world Studio 54

Abbie Powers


tudio 54, the short-lived yet highly infamous disco-themed dance club, opened in New York City April 26, 1977. Located on 54 W. 54 St. in Manhattan, Studio 54 was originally created and founded by Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager. The two sold the club just four years later, and it ran until 1991 by various owners. During its original glory, Studio 54 was known as one of the most sophisticated, well known dance clubs in the world. By the late 1970s, the club had played a large role in the development of both the disco music genre and nightclub culture as a whole. Rubell and Schrager hired a team of various experts to establish environmental light and set designs. The building, which was once a theatre, was transformed into constantly shifting environmental sensory explosions that included a dance floor and moveable set and lights using preexisting theatrical fly rails. Casablanca Records released “A Night at Studio 54,” an album full of disco music in 1979, which went Gold. The venue originally held the Gallo Opera House, which opened in 1927, and eventually became CBS radio and television Studio 52, hence the successor’s name of Studio 54. Although the space is no longer a nightclub, it is still commonly known as Studio 54 and is used as a venue for the Roundabout Theatre Company. art by Anna Sheals

art by Kelly Brucks


Rolling stones



od Stewart was mugged on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, CA., on April 26, 1982, in broad daylight. Although his $50,000 Porsche was stolen, he was neither injured nor harmed. Rod Stewart was born in North London, England, and has sold more than 100 million records worldwide throughout his five decade career. Made famous by his unique, raspy style of singing, Stewart had his musical breakthrough during the late 1960s and early 1970s with his roles in “The Jeff Beck Group” and “Faces.” This early work had a significant influence on the heavy metal genre of music. His solo career launched in 1969 with the release of his debut album, “An Old Raincoat Won’t Ever Let You Down.” In 1994, Stewart became part of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for his solo artist career and was inducted again this month as a member of Faces. In addition to that, he was voted No. 33 in the Top 100 Greatest Singers in Q Magazine and number 59 in Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Singers of All Time.

art by Anna Sheals

n April 26, 1965, the Rolling Stones held what may be the shortest concert in history. After just 15 minutes of performing for a wild crowd at Treasure Island Gardens in London, Ontario, fans began rioting so intensely that the band had to stop and the concert was shut down. There is still a lot of mystery surrounding this scandal, and a talk was recently held at the London Public Library to further unearth the reasons for this concert’s infamously quick demise. The Rolling Stones have since proved themselves as one of the most groundbreaking bands in musical history. Originating in London in 1962, the group, which includes both Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, took rock to a unique height, was inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989 and ranked No. four in Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Artists of All Time in 2004. Although the Rolling Stones’ music does incorporate both R&B and blues styles of music, their songs have predominately always been rock and roll. source:

Drink welcomes summer heat name. By substituting sugar with honey as a primary sweetener, the consistency of the drink turns smoother and richer in flavor. A mesh of ice and sweet watermelon turns a glass of slush into a refreshing, healthy and natural beacon of summery energy. I am planning to rely on this snowy drink, simple in its assembly and cleanup, to tame the hottest of those scorching summer days.

Abbie Powers


ust weeks ago as winter snow fell, I remember cursing the cold filth and dreaming of a smoldering sun. But now that the summer heat has begun to clasp its uncomfortably powerful rays around a fickle comfort-enthusiastic like myself, visions of snow often occupy my mind. Although I dream of rolling around in the heavenly stuff while waiting for my car’s AC to kick in, I also often fantasize about stuffing it in my mouth. Summer Watermelon Slushy It was with this desire for a treat Serves: 1 Time: 5 minutes as satisfyingly cold as snow that I joyfully discovered the Watermelon Ingredients: 4 ice cubes 1 1/2 C chopped watermelon 1 Tbsp honey or sweetener Slushy. With just three ingredients and five-minute prep time, this cool Instructions: beverage is an easy, effective and, most importantly, delicious way to tart by putting the ice cubes in a blender and mixing until a slush forms. After achieve an ideal body temperature the ice is broken down well enough, chop a watermelon (seeds included) into while playing in the summer sun. chunks. Put one and a half cups of watermelon chunks into blender in groups, The dominant ingredient, watermaking sure each addition is thoroughly incorporated. melon, is not only cheap, but also Depending on the amount of time the watermelon and ice combination healthy and hydrating. is blended, the consistency will be either chunky or more liquefied. Add the Sodas and sugary drinks do next tablespoon of honey as the last addition, making sure it is fully mixed. Honey to nothing to make up for the energy substitutes also work, such as other natural sweeteners. and water lost in an average sumOnce the mix is blended to the desired consistency, pour it into a glass. A mer day. The body needs something triangle of watermelon is a cute, easy garnish. This drink also works wonderfully substantial to regain the strength and with honeydew, muskmelon or any other firm fruit. hydration it’s been drained of from The addition of carbonated water or any other carbonated drink adds a fizzy that all-powerful sunshine, and watingle and turns the drink into something a bit more formal. termelon is as close to H2O as one art by Joanne Lee source: can get, hence the first syllable of its


photo illustration by Abbie Powers

Summer slush: The feisty recipe was found particularly refreshing to senior Abbie Powers.

20 ∙ Backpage

April 26, 2012


Performers succeed in raising profits for music department Halley Hollis


What was a goofy moment for you or your act during practices or the performance?

s the auditorium filled, junior Krista Blomenkamp began to feel nervous. She checked her watch; in five minutes, Capers 2012 would start. She and junior Kaitlyn Taylor would perform the country song “Leave the Pieces” by The Wreckers. “I was most nervous about what the other performers would think of me, not so much the crowd,” Blomenkamp said. “The other vocalists were all so good and had been singing for much longer than I have been.” Blomenkamp and Taylor’s was one of 19 acts that took place at 7 p.m. on April 19. The talent show, a fundraiser for the band program, brought in nearly $2,000. “The money bridges the gap between when school gets out and when we get our new budget in the middle of summer,” assistant band director Bob Thalhuber said. “We have expenses now, like jazz festivals, instruments and music that we need to buy.” Regardless of the purpose of the annual event, the act’s focus was on their performance. Blomenkamp said her love for singing helped her push through. She enjoys singing just for fun, given that she is an athlete and spends most of her time on the softball field. “I wanted to try out for Capers to

show people that I am more than just an athlete and that I have other talents too,” Blomenkamp said. “In high school we often get labeled as jocks, band kids or theater kids, and I wanted to show that just because I’ve been labeled as a jock, it doesn’t mean that sports is all that I am good at.” Senior Michael Fentress, on the other hand, has always been a musician and has never been afraid to perform. He began piano at the age of six and believes Capers was a fantastic opportunity to share his talent that he has worked on for a large portion of his life, but more importantly to send a message to all of his peers. “Performing for the people you know and hang out with is quite a rewarding experience,” Fentress said. “The best part of it is the connection. It allows you to bridge a gap and in a lot of ways, have something new to talk about with people you never thought you’d really talk to or get to know. They’ll give you a simple congratulations and tell you how great you did, and you’re then able to start up a conversation with them.” Sophomore Mariah Brady was just one in a large crowd at Capers this year. Brady said the talent show was an interesting way for her to meet new people and also learn about the people she walks with in the halls on a daily basis. “This is my first year at RBHS, so I’m not too familiar with the upperclassmen,”

“It was pretty crazy. Our act and some of the dance crews had a dance party in the choir room. It was a blast.” — Senior Mitchell Taylor

Brady said. “This year’s Capers was such a shock to me. There were so many surprising performances. It was exciting to see different people on stage with talents that you didn’t know they had.” Blomenkamp considered herself an underdog in the talent show. Returning acts and well-known musicians seemed to dominate the scene. Being an unexpected and unknown duet, she and Taylor experienced a bit of stage fright. The idea of performing before the student body was daunting, but the pair managed to pull everything together after a short week of practice. “For as little practice as Kaitlyn and I had, I think we did really well,” Blomenkamp said. “We had a few problems during rehearsals earlier in the week, but we managed to put together our knowledge of stage presence and were successful in the end. I just wanted to leave a good impression on the more experienced acts.” Fentress hasn’t ever truly experienced the anxious feeling. He said he only feels excitement and love when it comes to performing his personal music in front of a large crowd of people he cares about. “I’ve never really felt nervous before I perform,” Fentress said. “I’m regularly pretty chill and easy going up until about 30 seconds before the curtains open because it’s at that moment when the anticipation begins starts to take over. But as soon as the curtains open, it all goes away and you just go into performance mode.”

all photos by Asa Lory

Running the show (top): Seniors Charlie Davis (left) and Joseph De Bony (right) emcee Capers. An onstage bet resulted in Davis’ “French” attire. Just for laughs (above): Senior Julian Vizitei recounts his exploits as a RBHS band geek in a self-written comedy act.

“Well, [junior] Blaise Vogt, my bass player, came up with a very moving interprative dance where he dressed up in spandex and wore a Batman mask during one of our practices, but at show time he decided to back out. It would have really added an essence of eroticism to our performance.” — ­Senior Connor Gundy

“Well, we [were] both really nervous. I was like, ‘Yeah, its going to be cool.’ And then when the curtain started opening I was like, ‘f***.’” —Carly Allen

Community ∙ 3


April 26, 2012

Magelings Games opens for business Adam Schoelz


other. “It’s applied mathematics, actually,” Graham said. “A lot of game systems have a lot of backend mathematics that runs probabilities. When you sit down and play Warhammer, for example, there’s a lot of number crunching going on, but it’s behind the scenes, and it’s in a way that’s intuitive for people to use.” When it comes to crunching numbers, Graham is aware now might not be the best time to open a store. But though the economy is in a slump, that doesn’t worry Graham. His day job, teaching programming at the CACC, will help cover the costs, and Graham said his main priority was engaging the community. Down the road, he said, there may even be room for expansion. “This just needs to stay open; that’s it. People come in, have fun. We’ll float, and if we go nutterbutters rich we’ll find some way to thank the community,” Graham said. “I would like to see something even bigger, even at 3,300 square feet. I want something bigger. I want to be able to have 150 people in at o n c e a n d having fun and going at it.” art by Anna Sheals

n the quieter side of Providence Road, almost hidden behind the Music Suite at 1906 North Providence, is a store that defies expectations. A small awning over a glass door offers only a peek, revealing games and cards, but not much to grab the eye. Inside the store, however, is a personal experience, filled with people playing games together. The store, Magelings Games, is the project of Columbia Area Career Center teacher Nathaniel Graham and opened April 18. Its purpose, he said, beyond sales, money or moving inventory, is bringing people together. “Some folks will say, ‘Yeah, they’re just sitting around playing games,’ you know, waste of time, but really it builds a lot of social skills. It builds a lot of self-confidence,” Graham said. “You’re physically there with someone, and you’re each sharing a passion.” Magelings, he said, is a way to bring a pastime of his and many other people to the forefront. Graham said he had been playing tabletop games, sophisticated games that range from role-playing to total war, since the 1980s. Although Columbia currently has a couple of stores catering to the tabletop market, like Vahalla’s Gate, Graham said there is no place for people of all ages to go and play games; with Magelings, he hopes to rem-

edy that. Graham said the store will carry several systems even he hasn’t played before in an effort to appeal to a wider audience. “Systems” are tabletop games. The first system and perhaps most widely known tabletop game is Dungeons and Dragons, first released in 1974. It blossomed out of the growing popularity of organizations such as the Society for Creative Anachronism, while adding fantasy elements to the strictly historyfocused SCA. For junior Owen Thorpe, D&D was a defining game of his childhood; he has been playing since he was six years old. “I think one of the good social aspects of [tabletop games] is that most people see it as this ridiculously nerdy thing that a lot of people are serious about,” Thorpe said. “But a lot of the time I use it as a time to mess around and harass my friends.” Thorpe said Magelings was a great idea. Beyond the ease of access the store would offer for hard-to-find products, he said it helps overcome the insularity some games encourage. Tabletop roleplaying games such as D&D are typically played with a circle of close friends. “Having a place for people to actually play and get together is good,” Thorpe said. “It gets them out of their own social circles while playing.” As some games can encourage insularity, the store offers many social gaming events. However, Graham said they will not be without some learning. In addition to requiring quick mathematics skills, he said gamers learn from each

Kites fill the Columbian sky Maddie Magruder


n a windy day people struggle to keep their hair out of their faces, papers from flying about and car doors from swinging open uncontrollably. The air whooshes around; everything is at the mercy of the gusts. But for some, windy days are the perfect backdrop for a kite flying adventure. Ever since she can remember, junior Kayla Doolady has flown kites. On windy weekends her family members would grab their kites and watch them fly up in the air. She loves to “get outside and enjoy the weather with my family.” Doolady said last year during advisory, she and her friends enjoyed a few breezy days flying kites. Doolady isn’t the only one who loves to fly kites. On April 14, kite lovers joined for Kite Flying Day, a free event at Douglass Park sponsored by Columbia Parks and Recreation. Coordinator Tammy Miller said the event allows the community to enjoy the weather. Columbia started the program in the early 1990s to bring more

Up in the air art by Maria Kalaitzandonakes photo by Muhammad Al-Rawi

bonding between families. The city of Columbia “felt like parents didn’t have enough quality time with their children like they do today,” Miller said, “so they created this event to make it a fun and easy opportunity for families to come together to do an activity as a family, to communicate and just have fun.” Miller and the Parks and Recreation program aim to provide a fun environment for all, regardless of whether or not participants have kites. A limited number of free kites were on hand to give away, allowing everyone to be part of the fun. “It brings the community together,” Miller said. “We picked Douglass Park because it’s central[ly] located, and those families that are close by can just walk in. ” Junior Rebecca Burke-Agüero stumbled upon Kite Flying Day several years ago during a walk with her dog. The number of people with their different types of kites amazed her. Although she didn’t have a kite with her, she said the sight was really exciting. Since then, Burke-Agüero has flown kites with her advisory class, her family and her friends. “I love everything about flying,” BurkeAgüero said, “and seeing a kite way up high in the sky and controlling it and having the accomplishment of keeping it steady up there is really fun to me.” Instead of stumbling upon it as BurkeAgüero had, Doolady has attended several Kite Flying Days with her family. Her kite knowledge expanded at the event. She saw long kites, short kites, big kites and kites of all shapes. She also saw Chinese kites, something she had never seen before. The fun of kite flying integrates itself all through Columbia, from simple pleasures on a windy day at school to an event with fellow kite flyers. The event was a success, Miller said. She was happy to see “parents and k i d s coming together and doing a fun activity. That show[s] me that the parents are caring for their kids and want to do some fun activities with their kids.”

photo by Muhammad Al-Rawi

Starting a masterpiece: Junior Paige Selman shows her sketched idea for the mural in room 331 to junior Larry Green. The plan is to have a huge tree covering the back wall. Green is excited to participate later this month.

Mural kicks off in room 327 Sonya Francis


ith the end of the year closing in, most students are slowing down. Their batteries aren’t fully charged, and the only thing that occupies their minds is the countdown toward summer. But junior Paige Selman does not fit this case; instead, she has a new art project which she hopes to finish by the end of the year. As an Advanced Placement art student, Selman is no stranger to paint, so when the teachers in charge of the resource lab approached art teacher Sharyn HyattWade about the possibility of a school mural, Selman jumped at the chance. “I thought, ‘what reflective teachers, to know that the visual arts can create a dynamic learning environment,’” Hyatt-Wade said. When Selman started experimenting with styles, she said she taught herself backwards. Watching her mother oil paint, she started with oils and eventually learned how to draw. “Everyone gets something different out of art, and it’s whatever that person needs it to be for them to see it. You can’t avoid art. And since you can’t avoid it you can’t avoid people having reactions,” Selman said. “It just does something inside you, whether it’s relaxing or calming; everyone will have a reaction which is part of what makes art so cool. Art is a story with no words; you can just interpret it however you want.” Mary Grupe, a resource lab teacher, will be the dominant person working with Selman on the project; in fact, a quote from Aristotle sparked Grupe’s idea for the project — “the roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.” So what better to serve such a quote than a beautiful tree

of growth and strength? Eventually, when the students graduate, they will put their hands on the tree and add the “fruit” that the tree produces each year, causing it to grow and nurture the drive towards a good education, Selman said. “The students that access the resource room often have a love/hate relationship with school, their education, with the job of ‘doing’ school,” Grupe said. “Aristotle is calling each of us to not succumb to the tough, bitter parts of learning, but to look to the future, to opportunities that are coming their way as a result of their struggles.” This is the message of hope, and it demands a sense of determination the Resource Room staff tries to instill in each of our students, she said. Selman’s mural will be a part of RBHS for years. In fact, by the time the class of 2013 graduates there will be three in the resource labs. “It’s weird to think about leaving something behind. It doesn’t even matter if they don’t know it was me. That’s not the point of it at all,” Selman said. “I like to have my art hanging up and walk by when people are talking and not let them know that I did anything with it, but I like to hear what they say and learn what they are getting out of it.” Grupe said the overall goal is that the students will find drive. Grupe and Selman plan on using the creative and positive energies that come from painting to motivate students to bond with others and to teach them how to plan effective long-term projects. They need “respect, respect for themselves, their peers, their school, their futures. For with respect comes progress,” Grupe said. “Teaching students to gain and give respect is not easy, but doing things like this, providing a little extra attention and demonstrating how others believe in the worth of our students, is a great place to start.”

4 ∙ Ads

April 26, 2012



Personality Profiles ∙ 5

April 26, 2012


Online persona brings profits, entertainment

@DwightFalse False @DwightFalse Good things come to those who wait? False. Waiters get paid arguably the worst salaries out of any profession.

False @DwightFalse Life is like a box of chocolates you never know what you’re gonna get? False. A box of chocolates will contain chocolates.

False @DwightFalse Nothing rhymes with orange? False. Nothing and orange do not rhyme.

Q: What do you do in your free time? A: I like to hang out with friends, es-

photo by Halley Hollis

Maddie Davis Name: Madison Reasoner Grade: Sophomore

pecially my best friend Kayla Cooper. Q: How long have you guys been best friends? A: Well, we’ve cheered together, and that’s how we met. Q: So, you cheer? A: Yeah, for Authority and Rock Bridge. Q: Which one do you like better? A: I don’t know. They’re really different because obviously we don’t cheer for games at Authority, and I like doing that. But I also like competing at Authority. Q: What’s your favorite part about cheering for Rock Bridge? A: Winning state was great. It was one of the best feelings ever. Q: And what’s the best part about Authority? A: We’re all like a family. It’s really fun to tumble and stunt around with a bunch of girls that I get along with. Q: How often do you have practice?

A: Every day from 6-8 for Authority.

And Rock Bridge hasn’t started yet. Q: When is that? A: Tryouts are the end of April and then we practice every day over the summer. Q: Are you nervous for tryouts? A: Kind of. Q: Why? A: Well, I am because you never know what could happen. Q: Are those your only plans for the summer? A: Yeah. It’s hard to go anywhere with that much practice and we never really get a break. Q: What are five things you never leave your house without? A: My cell phone, chapstick, my permit, earrings and shoes. Q: What’s your favorite class at Rock Bridge? A: I really like advisory because I like the freedom. Q: Who is your favorite teacher? A: Ms. Rorvig.

da y.

and there are a lot of things that are awesome about him. Curran is just an all around good guy, and he makes some really funny videos.” Van Waarde’s unique musical and comical creativity on YouTube also pays him through advertisements. This privilege is only awarded to users that YouTube deems worthy through various variables such as number of followers and likes versus dislikes. “It works the same way as Twitter,” Van Waarde said. “A small ad will pop up either before or during a video, and if someone clicks on it, I get paid a few cents. It’s awesome.” Van Waarde is an online entrepreneur. He has found a way to make money while doing what he loves. Additionally, he must balance his online career while still maintaining jobs at his church, Woodcrest, and as a automobile sanitation engineer at Tiger Car Wash. “I like to do funny stuff with my friends, and I like making music,” Van Waarde said. “The best part is I get paid to do it without sacrificing my time.”

tw ee ts a


up laughs, Van Waarde’s intent was not always to make money. “I figured it would be funny to make a Squidward Twitter account, and it just kind of evolved into a way for me to make money,” Van Waarde said. “One day they offered to pay me, and I was like, cool!” While Van Waarde is fairly successful on Twitter, it is his YouTube accounts that make him the most money by posting the songs that he creates at his home studio. Along with his own beats, Van Waarde also posts comedy videos that he makes in his free time. “I like to make music, you know, the fist pumping techno music that gets your heart pumping,” Van Waarde said. “I actually got 150,000 views on a song I made.” Through his musical personality, “Curdabur,” he also sells his beats for aspiring musicians to use. “I once sold a beat for $75,” Van Waarde said. “I also make stupid videos that I think are kind of funny, such as my Crucial Tutorials. Essentially, I just make 10 second long videos that teach someone how to do something dumb like pour apple juice onto a VCR, they’re also racking up thousands of views.” Between his three YouTube channels, Curranonthecob, Curdabur, and CrucialTutorials, Van Waarde has more than 2,500 subscribers, many of whom are RBHS students. These subscribers to Van Waarde’s channel on Youtube always seem to be waiting on pins and needles for his next video to be uploaded. “I’m subscribed to Curran on YouTube. I think Curran’s YouTube channel is really creative, and really gets people excited to go to school with him,” senior Colton Gerling said. “He’s a really fun guy to be around,

ill io n


hen senior Curran Van Waarde wakes up every morning, the first thing he does is log into both of his Twitter accounts. While one is used for his personal thoughts, his other account “DwightFalse” is used as a means to make money. With 9,930 followers, Van Waarde tweets phrases he finds humorous, inspired by “The Office” character, Dwight Schrute. Only two weeks ago, Van Waarde sold his third account, “SquidwardTweets.” The account was started similar to “DwightFalse,” both based off of popular television shows. With 20,000 followers, “SquiwardTweets” earned Van Waarde $140. “I started a Twitter account for Squidward Tentacles from SpongeBob,” Van Waarde said. “I heard about people making money on Twitter, so I figured I would give it a shot. I posted relevant stuff to trending topics and various Spongebob quotes.” Even though Van Waarde is down to

one profitable account, both online identities began as a way for him to make peers laugh. Senior Tristan Welsh believes Van Waarde was able to make both accounts successful because of his unique humor. “I think what [Van Waarde] does with his SquidwardTweets and his DwightFalse tweets are comical genius,” Welsh said. “The reason they’re so funny is because of the level of creativity that he puts into those tweets. I’m a subscriber, and I really enjoy getting his tweets sent to my phone.” In order to garner such online attention, Van Waarde must keep his content fresh. One off-topic tweet has cost him hundreds of followers. Van Waarde tries to tweet at least twice a day in order to keep the laughs coming. As a fan of both “Spongebob” and “The Office,” it is not a difficult task for Van Waarde to use comical situations from the shows and channel them into his various online personas. He uses his extensive knowledge of both shows to craft his tweets to be as humorous as possible. Internet comedy is hit or miss, so Van Waarde takes extra care in his tweeting. “Luckily ‘Spongebob’ has plenty of funny quotes and stuff that allowed me to keep posting a lot of new and funny things,” Van Waarde said. “It does get slightly stressful when money comes into the equation, though. What I do is tweet an ad every once in a while, and every click that it gets gives me some money. It can be hard to make ads interesting, though. It’s difficult to advertise for a clothing company whilst remaining funny, but it’s really just a hobby to be honest. I never really thought I’d be able to make money.” Despite the ongoing pressure to conjure


Alex Burnam

95 d n se y he rt e eth g o t nd a False @DwightFalse , t er t i Flea market? False. No fleas. w se T u e opl n pe o i l l i False @DwightFalse e 175 m Le e

False @DwightFalse

A penny saved is a penny earned? False. It costs 2.4 cents to make a penny; therefore, a penny saved is 2.4 pennies earned.


Life is short? False. Life is the longest thing you will ever do.

Q: Why? A: She’s funny and really fair to ev-

eryone. I think she’s nice too, but I don’t really like math. Q: What’s your favorite part about Rock Bridge? A: I like all the seniors and the freedom. It’s cool getting to go out to lunch and getting to leave during that time. Q: What are your plans for after high school? A: I’m not sure right now but I think I want to attend the University of Arkansas. I’ve always wanted to go there. Q: Why? A: Well I’m from Arkansas, so it’s my hometown. Q: When did you move here? A: Two years ago. Q: Which do you like better? A: Well I like Columbia a lot, but when I first moved here I definitely liked Arkansas better because all of my friends were there.



yJ tb

Q: What job do you want to have? A: I’m not sure. My dream job would be to be a plastic surgeon, but I doubt I will end up being that. Q: Why not? A: Because I just don’t see it happening. I’ll probably be a stay at home mom or something. Q: Do you have any siblings? A: I have a 12-year-old sister and a nine-year-old brother. Q: Do you get along with them? A: For the most part, yeah. But I get along better with my brother because my sister and I are so close in age. Q: Do you have any pets? A: I have one dog named Yoki. Q: How long have you had Yoki? A: About a year. Q: What kind of dog is Yoki? A: A Sheepoo. Q: What’s your favorite food? A: I like Mexican a lot. Q: What’s your favorite Mexican resturant? A: I really like Tequila’s.

6 ∙Features

April 26, 2012


Leaving their fingerprint

Recent violent crimes alter residents’ perceptions Mike Presberg


Blake Becker

n the late hours of a spring night, as he walked home with two friends, sophomore Thomas Blower witnessed something much less familiar than the route he was taking; two assailants were mugging a 19-year-old college student. “At first they were throwing beer down at him, so basically he stood there, and he taunted them as if to say, ‘Yeah, I’m not afraid of you,’” Blower said. “And they definitely just beat his a--. It was only three or four swings, and he was down, out on the ground.” There seems to be a growing perception among Columbia residents that the city is experiencing a sudden surge of violent crime. In a survey taken by The Rock staff, 63 percent of 180 RBHS students polled believe Columbia is becoming increasingly violent. Since February, three high-profile cases have commanded local media attention: the Feb. 20 shooting at the 2003 West Worley Street Chuck E. Cheese, the March 12 shooting of 17-year-old Douglass High School student Deaudre Johnson near Douglass Park and the April 7 alleged homicide of former RBHS junior Bryan Rankin near 3600 West Sugar Tree Lane. Senior Deanna Vanzant, an acquaintance of the deceased Rankin, expressed concern about what she believes is a recent trend toward violence in Columbia. “All you have to do is watch TV or look at a newspaper, and it seems like every couple days there’s some shooting or something that happened here locally,” Vanzant said. “It’s definitely a big change from the way I remember this city from my childhood. I used to think of it as like just a nice town, and now it’s almost like it’s becoming a dangerous city.” However, Sergeant Jill Schlude, head of public relations for the Columbia Police Department, said the perception that Columbia has fallen from grace isn’t quite accurate.

She said while any increase in crime is problematic, the rate at which crime in Columbia has risen is relatively low compared to cities that have experienced similar spikes in population. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, from 20012010, Columbia’s violent crime rate increased by 10.4 percent, while the city’s population grew by 28.4 percent. “It’s true that over the past few months there have been quite a few incidents that are way out of the norm in terms of what Columbia residents are used to hearing about and dealing with, and we obviously take these recent incidents as well as the citizens’ concern very seriously,” Schlude said. “It’s also true, however, that Columbia is still a very safe local community compared to other cities within the same population range.” Whether or not Columbia as a whole is becoming more dangerous, Vanzant is still concerned with the fact that many of these recent incidents have been both perpetrated by and committed against teenage youths. “I would definitely say that I’m worried just about the overall fact that people our age are being more violent,” Vanzant said. “We’re not really used to dealing with deaths of people our age, and I just hope it doesn’t keep happening.” Megan Steen, head of Stephens Lake Behavioral Health Clinic in Columbia, said the inherent insecurity of the high school years can cause temptations toward a life of crime or gang-related activity for teenagers, especially for those who feel ostracized economically and socially. “Crime at the high school level affects students because it occurs during a very impressionable and

Crime ... affects students because it occurs during a very impressionable and emotional time during an adolescent’s life.”

Megan Steen Stephens Lake Clinic

emotional time during an adolescent’s life. During this time of life, acceptance and a feeling of belonging are so important for many adolescents that it is easier to be pursued into activities which have negative consequences, such as crime,” Steen said. “Adolescents who turn to crime may not believe that they have any positive future goals for themselves, and turning to crime can lead them further off track from establishing positive goals.” Both Steen and Assistant Principal Dr. Tim Wright believe a major factor that leads many high school students to engage in violent criminal activity is a lack of trusting relationships with adults. Wright said through earning the trust of their students, RBHS administrators have helped stop anything that might be constituted as violent crime from happening within the walls of RBHS. “As administrators we try to keep an eye out for things that are going on in our community that could potentially spill over into school,” Wright said. “One of the biggest deterrents we have is our relationships with our students. We talk to students all the time and ask what is going on and if they know of people having issues.” Although he said he feels safe within the boundaries of his high school, Blower’s perception of the city he calls home has radically changed since he witnessed the mugging of a stranger. “I couldn’t believe it,” Blower said. “I was like, ‘Wow, is this what Columbia is turning into?’ It was eye-opening to see one of the paths I take home every night was populated with thugs who like to beat people up.” When the victim isn’t a stranger, the result can be even more devastating. Vanzant said the experience of suddenly losing someone she knew hasn’t only changed the way she sees the city, but also how she views relationships in her everyday life. “It’s just whenever something like that happens, you’re just left kind of speechless. It’s really hard to understand how or why something like that happens,” Vanzant said. “It’s impossible to really even get that it happened immediately. It takes time to realize that somebody you know, you’re never going to see again. It just changes the way you see things. … It changes the way you see and treat other people, and you don’t take as many things for granted.”

Tolerance for cursing changes over generations Alexa Walters


s senior Taylor Buster tread down New Haven Elementary School hallways, he followed his classmates to his next destination. Along the way he stopped upon hearing a peculiar word. A classmate walking next to him had said a curse word. He remembers this instance as the first bad word he ever heard, which jolted him to realize how often people around him use explicit language. “I think people use [profanity] more as humor now because it’s kind of funny whenever something little happens, and then the person has a huge reaction to it, and so I notice a lot of the times [the people who use profanity] are the people that others laugh at and think are funny,” Buster said. “I don’t think it’s really good or necessarily healthy to be using bad words often. There’s not really any time that it’s OK.” Psychology teacher Debra Perry said profanity has become deeply rooted in society and cultural media. She remembers a time when the type of explicit ideas she

hears now did not come on until after 9 p.m., after children had gone to bed. Now children are learning by example as television and radio have begun to allow more profane ideas and words than was previously permitted, according to The Official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. This tendency of children, Perry said, is natural. She remembers a time during her high school when the artist formerly known as Prince was entering the music industry; she said she knew his ideas were different and explicit for the time, but she was enthralled with the new form of music. Likewise, kids want to be different their parents, but she questions how far is too far to achieve independence. Perry thinks the need for people to express and define themselves is the driving reason behind the use of explicit language. The usage began when people wanted to distinguish themselves from the group and become more of an individual. It then began to become acceptable to use around friends. “Now people aren’t just using [profanity] with their friends,” Perry said. “It is

now wherever you are — at the grocery store, at the pool, at whatever. And if it is not OK, then we need to, I think, rein it in some. And I think people will just start thinking about its impact and its effects. I do think that we feel free to use profane language which used to be something for instances, but it’s the standard language now and so it loses its impact.” Perry also does not feel her belief is unique at RBHS. She said she has talked to many students who find the language inappropriate, as well. Senior Jessi English used to find the profanity unsuitable as well, but as it became used more frequently around her, her ideals have altered to fit the society she is immersed in. She does not think cussing is necessarily a good thing, but it has become so overused in society that individuals use it almost unconsciously. English said if she does use profanity, it is only when she feels very upset or agitated. She feels cussing on a regular basis just shows that one has less respect for himself. “Our population does not care,” English said. “That is simply how it is. We don’t care what we say, and we don’t care who

gets offended. I really think our morals are messed up. I only cuss when I am mad or angry. I don’t just cuss when I am happy.” English seems to have the right idea that the general population does not care what they say. According to howstuffworks, 72 percent of men and 58 percent of women swear in public. Senior Emily Parks said she sees the growing epidemic as people look to fit in. “I started cussing when I was in my early teens,” Parks said, “I just [cussed] more socially with friends but not around my parents. [When I use curse words with my friends, they] laugh because they don’t expect me to cuss, and they think it’s cute.” Parks also feels the use of profanity allows her to express her feelings stronger than she normally would. Perry attributes the growing use of these explicit words and ideas in modern day pop culture to the need of people to fit into the society they live in. “I think that we are exposed to so much that we are desensitized to it,” Perry said. “But saying that, the only thing I can say is we need to be aware of it and accept the fact that language does shape and is that what we want around our kids.” art by Kelly Brucks

Features ∙ 7

April 26, 2012


of birth control are available in the U.S. Among females, 79% used contraceptives. The most common form was the condom at 68%.

Kaitlyn Marsh

That was followed by the pill, at 15% Followed by withdrawal at 8%.


Source: MEPS

1 2 in

Contraceptives raise questions for teens

About pregnancies in the U.S. are


fter stepping out of the shower, combing her wet hair and brushing her teeth senior Breanna Aldridge must remember one more chore before bed. She removes a tiny pink pill from its foil wrapping and pops it into her mouth, a two-year-old routine — since her doctor prescribed her birth control. “I was put on it for my acne, which wasn’t really bad in the first place, but my parents just put me on it,” Aldridge said. “We were folding laundry one day, and my mom was like, ‘Oh, you have a doctor’s appointment,’ and I was like, ‘What for?’ and she said, ‘Me and your dad have decided to put you on birth control.’” Aldridge is one of 2.9 million female teenagers who take contraceptives, according to Guttmacher Institute. As well as banishing acne, birth control regulates or sometimes eliminates the menstruation cycle entirely. GI reports fewer than half of teenagers on birth control take it for menstrual purposes and 23 percent to cure acne. These benefits have made it more popular in forms such as patches, injections and oral contraceptives. “When girls think of birth control they think of sex, but it does have its benefits without having sex. … If you’re on birth control you don’t have to have sex all the time; it’s got the health [benefits], too, like acne and regulating periods,” Aldridge said. Although “I think [being on birth control] aided in my decision [to have sex] … once that ‘time’ came, being on the pill did aid my decision to have sex because I felt that I was safe.” Junior Ama Cox, a user of birth control for three years, relies on a shot she receives once every three months called Depo that claims to be 99.9 percent effective and relieves her of a period and its downsides. A fear of pregnancy prompted Cox to find a reliable form of birth control because the threat of conception was not going to limit her sex life. “I’m sexually active, and I also have a phobia of pregnancy,” Cox said. “That’s one of the reasons I got [birth control] because I would have massive panic attacks without it, so I finally got it, and that calmed me down. … And there are no periods, no menstruating, no cramps, which is an incredible benefit.” Along with contraceptive choices such as


“the pill” or an injection, other methods such as spermicides, intrauterine devices and condoms range from 94 to 99 percent effectiveness in preventing pregnancies, according to the FDA office of Women’s Health. Birth control, however, isn’t the answer to all problems. “Birth control will not protect against sexually transmitted diseases. For that [teenagers] need to use condoms or avoid intercourse with some they suspect to be infected,” said Mira Aubuchon, M.D. in obstetrics, gynecology and women’s health. “Sometimes very sensitive patients will have depression on pills. The depo provera shot typically has more of a negative effect on mood, but even that is very well tolerated by most women.” Teenagers usually think birth control can cause fertility loss, cancers and hypothetical abortions, but these accusations are false, Aubuchon said. Although there are concerns over certain birth controls, besides preventing pregnancies, most have minor side effects, if any. Despite birth control being a safe option, however, sophomore Kristen Buster chooses to keep her distance from these medications and advises high school students to do the same. “As far as a high school girl [taking it], if someone is using birth control the problem is bigger than birth control. The problem is more of temptations to have sex versus just taking birth control,” Buster said. “I know some people whose doctors tell them to take birth control for complexion, but at the same time having that safety net makes the temptations worse.” Having been raised in a Christian household with strong religious morals her parents instilled in her, Buster has always had a negative view of birth control in preventing pregnancy during pre-marital sex. But Cox said parents are the culprit in the controversy that

is birth control. “Parents think that if you don’t allow your children to get birth control, they won’t have sex, which is the biggest lie that you could possibly tell anyone. Teenagers are going to do it anyway. We have raging hormones. What else are we going to do?” Cox said. “I think what [some parents] are doing is moderately selfish because they are considering their own opinions and feelings over their child’s physical needs.” Eva Cox, Ama’s mother, has always made birth control available to her daughters to avoid pregnancy. Having a baby at a young age herself and raising her children as a single mom, Eva said she isn’t necessarily supporting her girls’ sexual activity, but is providing contraceptives as a safety precaution. “A condom and a seat belt are very much alike in this situation. A lot of people look at it as a safety precaution because wearing a seat belt doesn’t mean you’re giving her permission to go out and play death race 5,000. It just means you want your child prepared if something could happen,” Eva said. “I knew when [Ama] was interested in boys and dating and things like that, and we started having dialogue about different things and we discussed birth control. If [children] don’t fear your [parental] judgment, they will always come to you.” This is also something Aldridge considers for her own teen in the future. With pills to patches providing the pleasures without the scare of pregnancy, Aldridge is confident in the benefits birth control may bring to a possible daughter in the next few years. “If I do have a girl and she [begins] high school, and maybe has a boyfriend, I’d want to talk about [birth control]. I know some parents are like, ‘No, no, no, no, no,’ and maybe like an accident happens [and] she’s pregnant,” Aldridge said. “And for the physical features like the acne, it could be a self-esteem issue. It’s a good thing to have birth control.”

Parents think that if you don’t allow your children to get birth control, they won’t have sex. ... [But] teenagers are going to do it anyway.” Ama Cox senior

i aw l-R




M by to ho

A ad


all art by Kelly Brucks

8 ∙ Ads

April 26, 2012





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In-Depths ∙ 9

E M n i e f

April 26, 2012


n o


Juvenile arrests, detention change discipline mentalities

Adam Schoelz



ophomore Katie Neu wasn’t looking to get arrested. At the mall with a friend on a sunny day, she was looking to have a good time. That’s why when the manager of the store ordered her and her friend to the back to empty out their bags, revealing the ill-gotten gains therein, Neu said things quickly went downhill. “When it came to clothes, there was some stuff we wanted that we couldn’t afford, so we took it and stuck it in our bags. And then we actually went to quite a few stores — probably shouldn’t have done that,” Neu said. “The manager came over when we were leaving the store and said we had to go the back and empty out our bags, and then she found out and said, ‘Oh, you’ve been stealing from other people, too. What joy.’” Neu and her friend are among the 10 million caught shoplifting annually, according to the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention. Neu said shoplifting was attractive and easy as well as a relatively low risk way of scoring some expensive items. “It’s like that adrenaline rush where you really don’t think it’s going to happen to you,” Neu said. “You never hear in the paper ‘Teen girl steals clothes,’ but you hear about big wrecks and stuff, not the mall.” After they had caught the girls, the managers called the police, and Neu found herself, for the first — and only — time in her life climbing into the back of a police cruiser. “The only thing I was worried about was my parents, my dad especially,” Neu said. “I was really scared. Anything could’ve happened that would have made me feel better, but they called my parents.” While Neu and her friend were waiting for their parents, the police left them in a small cubicle in the

police station. The isolation, Neu said, caused her mind to run wild with frightening possibilities. “It was really scary because all you want to do is get up and leave and act like it never happened, but they just kept on coming back and making you feel worse and talk about it,” Neu said. “It makes you feel really heavy, and you’re just like, ‘I don’t know why I did this,’ and you kind of see all the things you think are going to happen to you come through your mind.” School Resource Officer Keisha Edwards said cases like Neu’s are important as watershed moments in a juvenile crime career. Going to jail for an afternoon and separating themselves from friends and family, she said, can stop shoplifters before they move on to more serious crimes. “I hope that it is a scared straight moment, the isolation away from society,” Edwards said. “Too often, kids start with shoplifting and then move up to assaults, and then move up to drugs, and then move up to burglaries, and it becomes a combination of all, when it could have been stopped at that scared straight moment.” While Neu may have spent an afternoon at the police station, Edwards said putting juveniles away is definitely not the first course of action for law enforcement. Juvenile detention is a last resort of sorts, she said, where the police send kids who need structured reform. A point system, similar to the driver’s license point system, dictates what happens when a kid commits a crime, she said. “Everything counts. Referrals to the juvenile office for any offense, so that could be juvenile delinquency; not obeying parents, leaving the house without permission — those sorts of things all count for one point, and if you are arrested for a crime, a misdemeanor, it counts for two or three points, and if you are arrested for a felony it counts for four or five points. And so that total has to equal up to 15 before it’s determined if you get detained,” Edwards said. “They want to be able to be consistent with the people

they are detaining, and they don’t want to base it on gender, race, or any of those things. They want to base it on the severity of what’s been going on with the kid.” The adult world is different. Physical confinement is the most common way to deprive adult lawbreakers of their rights, with almost one and a half million Americans held as prisoners of the state, according to the Pew Center on the States. Junior Jackson Harris*, who went to juvenile detention, got a taste of what time is like in jail. “You don’t really keep track of days. That just gets tough,” Harris said. “You don’t want to know how much is in front of you, just got to go with it, like you don’t know what’s happening. It goes faster that way.” Harris spent a month and 14 days in juvenile detention. That time, he said, was characterized by much time spent staring at walls and little formal education. Ironically, he said despite the lack of schooling, he found himself reading more. “I read a lot because you’re not really thinking about time, and you’re reading, and you’re in your own head, and you’re not like looking around seeing the same thing that you’ve been looking at for the past 10 hours.” Harris said. The detention center “gives you a fifth grade curriculum, like courses that somewhat correspond to what you’re doing because it’s all fifth grade — that’s what it averages out to, the age that comes in there.” While youths commit fewer than 15 percent of crimes, up to one-fifth placed in front of a judge will find their way into a detention facility, according to the Campaign for Youth Justice. Harris said the beginning of detention was the hardest because of the unfamiliarity of juvenile detention and the uncertainty of his future. “The first 24 [hours] are bad because you just sit in a white room and lay down on your mat and look at the wall, and everything’s kind

When it came to clothes, there was some stuff we wanted that we couldn’t afford, so we took it and stuck it in our bags.” Katie Neu sophomore

of hitting you at once because it’s the first time you’ve been arrested, and you don’t really know what’s going on, and you’re getting weird phone calls and weird people are coming by to talk to you or you’re having people come and get fingerprints.” Harris said. “You make friends. You usually make friends on detention side because you just sit there and talk to them, and you don’t have a lot of school ... because you might be in there two days, you might be in there a week, you might be in there two weeks, you might be in there six months.” On the other side of the law, Edwards is trying her best to keep students out of juvenile detention. While she recognizes that the detention system serves its purpose, she believes that the most effective strategy to keep kids on track by connecting community, school and police in a meaningful way. It is her job, she said, to make sure kids both understand the police and feel comfortable approaching them, so they can avoid losing their rights and going to jail. “Not every officer can be a school resource officer. You have to have a lot of patience, and you have to have the ability to want to relate to the kids because it is a balance between police and community and bringing those two things together,” Edwards said. “I enjoy talking to kids about the law or giving interviews about the law enforcement world because a lot of these young kids don’t know about the law enforcement world and many of them are very curious.” For Harris detention is now a distant memory, a bad dream. When he was inside, his freedoms were restricted and life a curious combination of uncertainty and monotony. Looking back, he said it seemed evident there was only one way out. “They tell you what to do, and you can’t really question that,” Harris said. “I mean, you can, but you’d just be immature and self-destructive. It’s all about just playing their game.” *name withheld upon request additional reporting by Jackie Nichols

all art by Theresa Whang

April 2012 The Rock  

Rock Bridge High School's student newspaper, the Rock.

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