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WEST SI DE STO RY IOWA CITY WEST HIGH SCHOOL

2901 MELROSE AVE.

IOWA CITY, IA 52246

WSSPAPER.COM

VOLUME 50 ISSUE 5

AMONG N E D US HID Voices of immigrants in modern America.

APRIL 6, 2018


P H OTO F E AT U R E C O N T E ST

KATHERINE YACOPUCCI ‘19

When I got my camera I realized how good the zoom was and I became very interested in taking pictures of the moon. It amazed me how well I could capture something so far away.


CONTENTS

M I R AC L E SEASON

1 0 A L L G E N D E R S W E LC O M E 1 2 S P R I N G I N TO AC T I O N

PROFILES 14 SEEING THE BRIGHT SIDE

PERSPECTIVE

1 8 T H E P I C K L E B R OT H E R S

AMONG US

W E S T S I D E S TO RY:

COVER PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY PAREEN MHATRE COVER ART BY ANGELA ZIRBES COVER DESIGN BY CRYSTAL KIM

04 PROGRESS POSTPONED

A P OW E R F U L

HIDDEN

FOLLOW US @WSSPAPER

06 16 20 29 38 48

F E AT U R E

A BEHIND THE S C E N E S LO O K

THE CLUB A DVA N TAG E

PA R K YO U R PRIVILEGE

LETTER FROM THE

2 0 A WO R D I S WO RT H A T H O U S A N D P I C T U R E S

C OV E R

E N T E RTA I N M E N T 3 2 J O K E ’ S O N YO U 34 IN MY OPINION

S P O RT S 4 0 P I C T U R E P E R F E C T P R AC T I C E 42 DOUBLE TEAMED

O P I N I O N & E D I TO R I A L 4 4 S A F E T Y A F T E R PA R K L A N D 4 5 T H E E R A O F E M P T Y AC C E P TA N C E 4 6 Z AC H WA H L S G U E S T C O L U M N 47 THE SHARKS IN OUR SOCIETY

EDITOR

Happy spring, dear readers! I would make a weather joke to open this letter, but as we all know, it won’t be relevant by the time this issue comes out. (Fun fact: we export nine days before publication day!) Instead, here’s a timeless Iowa City joke: where can you go to see every West High student and teacher and have myriad forced conversations? The Mormon Trek Java House! I’m a comedienne. I’ll be here all night, folks; check out the back page. On to the important content. Many of the people we sit shoulder-to-shoulder with in class are undocumented citizens; they’re denied basic rights those of us with American citizenships or permanent residency never have to think about. Anjali Huynh highlights the ever-growing issue of immigration we face here in the United States.

I’m excited to share that we have three guest columns this issue, one of which the parking lot administrators wrote about privilege. Their column made me stop parking in the teachers’ lot and it may make you reflect on your parking habits, too. I’d be remiss if I didn’t make some remark about how sappy I am about this being the last issue with this staff (we break off for our last issue in May); 2017-18 WSS Staff, you’re all wonderful people. Thanks for making this year so solid. It has been real, and it has been fun, but I don’t know if I can say it has been real fun. Just kidding. It has been real fun.

NINA ELKADI


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PROGRESS POSTPONED

PHOTO BY IVAN BADOVINAC DESIGN BY LYDIA GUO

BY LAUREN KATZ & SHAWN THACKER

Amid controversy over the cancellation of a student-proposed ethnic studies pilot class for third trimester, students and administration aim to implement diversity education in the future.

I

n response to racist incidents involving people of color around West High being told to “go back home” after the election of Donald Trump, students formed the group Students Against Hate and Discrimination with the goal of promoting equality and inclusivity throughout the school district. Following a series of student-led protests around the community, SAHD founder Lujayn Hamad ’18 voiced student dissatisfaction with the status quo in November 2016 by presenting the school board with a list of eight demands for action to create a safe, discrimination-free environment. In particular, one of the demands Hamad cited was the creation of a diversity course designed to help increase cross-cultural tolerance through the promotion of awareness of minority history and contributions. “We didn’t feel that many students … believed that the curriculum represented them and that

they’re not learning about themselves in these classes and textbooks further than just Gandhi and MLK,” Hamad said. “You learn that you were a slave before anything else ... We wanted representation and I feel that representation would lower ignorance within the school environment.” Although in April 2017 the district approved a plan to infuse some elements of SAHD’s proposal into seventh and ninth grade classes, students like Hamad did not feel this explicitly dealt with the lack of diversity teaching in school. With such concerns about promoting social justice through ethnic studies in mind, Director of Equity and Engagement for the ICCSD Kingsley Botchway attempted to realize SAHD’s goal through the creation of a class for both City and West High. “The students are telling us what they want to see and hear,” Botchway said. “Our job is to lis-

ten and our job is to prepare them and provide them with a curriculum that not only empowers them within their own school environment but is something they can take and use to elevate themselves as they leave their district.” In October 2017 Botchway met with Lisa Covington, a sociology graduate student at the University of Iowa, to discuss options for providing this course with her as an instructor, due to her background and prior experience teaching a similar course at the college level. Because of the longer timeframe requisite for the implementation of a class through the normal course-adoption process, Botchway proposed at the Dec. 19 Education Committee meeting to offer the course as a pilot during third trimester in both City and West High. Covington, who developed an ethnic studies curriculum at San Diego State University, said that race and ethnicity are “not being explicitly


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discussed” even though inherently related topics are being talked about in school classes. “Whether or not students realize it, if the majority of the curriculum is focused on colonization from Europe, that’s automatically raced,” Covington said. “And if it’s majority white males, it’s already gendered. I think it’s already happening, but the fact that students would like to be able to identify the contributions of underrepresented groups in the same fashion is what’s missing.” With high hopes for an ethnic studies class poised to address the need students felt for diversity education, many were shocked when the plans for the class fell through and the decision to cancel the pilot class was announced only days before it was meant to begin. “Where [the process] fell apart, in large part, was around payment,” Botchway said. In regards to the salary issue, with such a limited timeframe a sufficient period of contract negotiation was not possible. “As with any professional contract negotiation, I’m presented with an amount and then there’s a negotiation process. That didn’t necessarily happen here,” Covington said. “I was presented with an amount that did not take into account many factors including curriculum development, teaching at several schools, time and the utilization of my expertise as an instructor and professional prior to the beginning of the trimester.” With district requests for ownership of her curriculum, Covington says that she did not want to make this important decision on such short notice. However, Botchway said the district also considered enrollment numbers when assessing whether their budget could support Covington’s requests for the course. Because enrollment was around 14 students, the district decided to postpone the course. “The thought initially was this course had generated so much interest that there wouldn’t need to be a high level of publicity,” Botchway said. “Knowing what I know now, we would have done more. That ultimately falls on our office’s shoulders: we should have been more in the schools, talking about it, promoting it, making posters about it.” At an ICCSD school board meeting on March 27, SAHD members carrying posters expressed their disappointment that the class was cancelled for the 2017-2018 school year. “We would’ve fundraised, we would have found the money and brought the money somehow if money was really the issue,” Hamad said. “Of course we’re going to keep pushing for it.” Additionally, SAHD members said they created a petition after the class was cancelled that had dozens of students affirm that they would take the class. At the March board meeting,

“ YOU LEARN THAT YOU WE RE A SLAVE B E FORE ANYTH I NG E LSE —THAT YOU CAM E F ROM SLAVES.” - LUJAYN HAMAD ’18

Covington remained adamant in her support of an ethnic studies class. “Honestly, I would teach this class tomorrow [outside] of a schoolhouse for free because of these voices,” Covington said. “I think that when you’re dealing with structures like a school district, it’s important to note that there are structures in place that could allow this course to happen and there are structures in place that could allow it to fall, as it has.” With the class no longer in the picture, Covington is currently volunteering her time every other weekend to have discussions with interested students on race and ethnicity topics. In any case, although the decision was already made to no longer offer the pilot course for third trimester, both SAHD and Botchway alike aim to keep pushing for an ethnic studies course in the curriculum, hoping to implement it in the future. “We’re looking at a K-12 certified teacher to teach the course, we’re looking at a potential university PSEO option, similar to the Chinese class offered at West,” Botchway said. “[If] those two options aren’t feasible for the fall, we’d go through the regular course adoption process. I see obviously there were mistakes made … so I’ll take [responsibility] and I’ll try to do a better job next time.” According to many SAHD members graduating this year, the future potential for promoting inclusivity through education outweighs the current setback in implementing the ethnic studies class. “I have a little cousin that’s in this district. She was telling me about some bullies that would say hate names towards her and her friends,” said SAHD member Safeya Siddig ’18. “I’m not just doing this for myself … I still want her and her classmates to have this class to look forward to.”

IMMEDIATE DEMANDS 1. Clear support from faculty and administration must be shown and a statement made against bullying and harassment 2. Teachers and administrators must enact the provided procedure when an incident [of harassment] has occurred 3. Education about the rights of students and the procedures to ensure rights 4. There must be student-led workshops and trainings about diversity 5. Available mental health counseling and staff must be prioritized

DEMANDS FOR SUSTAINED CHANGE 1. Education for students about our rights 2. Diversity classes should be added as a required course for graduation for all students 3. Devoted mental health specialists must be made readily available to students *to check out the full description of the demands made by SAHD, view this article on wsspaper.com


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M I R A C L E

S E A S O N

Hollywood has come to Iowa City, turning a hometown miracle into a nationwide inspiration. BY JENNA WANG

O

n March 18, hundreds of community members arrived at the Englert Theatre for the red-carpet hometown premiere of “The Miracle Season,” a movie that chronicles the story of the Women of Troy’s back-to-back volleyball state championships. Set in 2011, West High’s volleyball team, fresh off a recent championship, loses their star player and team captain Caroline ‘Line’ Found in a moped accident just as the new season takes hold. Her teammates are faced with insurmountable grief, just as her father Ernie Found deals with the loss of his daughter Caroline and wife Ellyn, who passes away a week after Caroline’s funeral due to end-stage cancer. Under the leadership of former coach Kathy Bresnahan, the team would overcome all odds to win yet another state championship against rival City High. “I remember standing there live when they won the championship, holding Caroline’s picture,” Found said. “I remember standing with tears loaded in my eyes and thinking, ‘God, this is so surreal.’ This is unbelievable that this happened. I almost felt like it was so surreal of, ‘man, this is almost like being in a movie.’” He wasn’t alone in feeling this way. LD Entertainment would eventually pick up the movie concept and film for months in Canada, with the basis of the movie being Bresnahan’s book “The Miracle Season” written in her point of view. Although the book was recently released to the public through book signings, it was a product of three summers’ work. “I spent eight hours a day the entire summer vacation writing … about 20,000 words. And not good words,” Bresnahan said. “I’m a coach, not a writer, so I hired a writing coach to read it. It was an interesting process.” Regarding the seriousness of the events that have happened, Found and Bresnahan both have been aware of the expectations of community members for the book and movie, as well as what Hollywood’s portrayal could be. PHOTOS BY SEAN BROWN DESIGN BY JENNA ZENG


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The thought proved to be true as hunHowever, the premiere was bittersweet car-award-winning actress Helen Hunt, noticed as those who were close to Caroline and Hunt’s dedication to detail throughout filming. dreds of thousands of people startthe season’s story gathered to celebrate “[Hunt] had me record and read every single ed to reach out to Found and Bresnahhow an initial tragedy became a miracle. one of her lines in the script how I would read it. an after the premiere and book release. “The feedback has been very thought“There were lots of conflicting emo- She would videotape my walk so she could copy tions, but it was exciting because we had it,” Bresnahan said. “It’s amazing the amount ful and kind. [Viewers] sat through it put so many hundreds of hours prepar- of time they work in perfecting their craft.” with either tears or cheers,” Found said. In the midst of the spotlights and emotions, ing for that day, from tickets to the venWith a movie centered on volleyue to the right equipment,” Bresnahan said. ball, it was also necessary for the ac- Bresnahan frequently roots herself back to By her side the entire day were members of tors to train in the sport to successfully the main purposes of the movie and book. “It’s really the need to see my players … and her 2011 team who came together on the red film volleyball games and practice scenes. carpet in a emotional moment. Through it all, “The only one who absolutely could not play was Caroline and Ellyn being celebrated. You open yourself up to criticism and Bresnahan noticed that that’s the hardest part—critithey were holding hands. cism of the book, criticism of “I’m so proud of them. “ I PRO M I SE D WH E N I D I D H E R E U LOGY people thinking we’re trying It makes my heart burst to make money,” Bresnahan with pride when I see AT H E R F U N E R AL— I SAI D THAT ‘ I H O PE said. “[However], the best them together. And that’s part is so many texts and meswhat they did that season. WE MAK E YOU PROU D,’ AN D I H O PE sages coming in already from When they were most people who are inspired.” upset, they would hold WE ’ VE MADE H E R PROU D.” The movie will open up at hands,” Bresnahan said. - KATHY BRESNAHAN, 12,000 theaters nationwide “To see them automatiFORMER VOLEYBALL COACH & AUTHOR today as both Bresnahan cally searching for each and Found reflect on the other’s hands without even talking about it and watching [them] watch Erin Moriarty, who played Caroline’s best friend entire process and their messages for Carothe movie when the funny parts would come and main character, Kelley [Fliehler],” Bresnah- line as her influence spreads across the nation. “I promised when I did her eulogy at her funerand they would hit each other was fun.” an said. “I’ve worked with her for hours, and the The movie premiere was also an apprecia- whole [team] just played for hours and hours.” al—I said that ‘I hope we make you proud,’ and tion of the work and time that was put into the After the completion of the movie, it began to I hope we’ve made her proud,” Bresnahan said. Found has a similar message. movie process, as both Bresnahan and Found advance through beta testing rounds to be grad“I’d tell her, look at all the marvelous things had the opportunity to visit the Vancouver ed on and judged for overall composite scores. set several times. During those visits, both “[To the producer’s] surprise, the mov- you did and all the people that you influenced acquired a greater sense of the movie-mak- ie scored amazingly high ... they start- and helped,” Found said. “We all wish you ing process, especially the effort of the actors. ed to sense that this was going to be were still here to keep putting smiles on our Bresnahan, who was portrayed by Os- far-reaching and meaningful,” Found said. faces. I’d hug you more than anything else.”

Hundreds of people line up to see the premiere of the movie “The Miracle Season” in the hometown showing at the Englert Theatre on March 18 in downtown Iowa City.

Author of the book “The Miracle Season,” Kathy Bresnahan, held a book signing on Feb. 21 at Coach’s Corner. The restaurant was packed with people, including Caroline Found’s family and close friends.


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ALL GENDERS WELCOME BY EMMA BRUSTKERN

W

hen a student normally walks into a bathroom at school, their main fear is that they won’t make it to class on time. But for a non-binary student, just stepping into the bathroom means facing stares, taunts and possible harassment. However, many of these fears can be alleviated with the addition of a gender-neutral restroom. Although there have been talks of bringing gender-neutral restrooms to West in the past, the current construction makes it easier than ever to install one. Starting after spring break, West High now has a fully-functioning gender-neutral restroom. The bathroom is made for a single user, so students wanting to use the restroom can do so in complete privacy without any fear of confrontation. It is located in the art hallway between Room 153 and Room 155. “I think it will take one point of stress away from [non-binary students] during the day. They won’t have to worry about being judged when they enter a bathroom,” said West High Principal Gregg Shoultz. The debate over gender-neutral bathrooms has spanned the course of a decade, but they have only recently made an appearance in the ICCSD. After a push from City High School’s Student Senate and some of their transgender and non-binary students, the school received a public gender-neutral bathroom at the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year. “At City, the problem was there were a lot of trans students like myself who didn’t want to use the restroom throughout the entire day because they didn’t feel safe going into the restroom with which they identified,” said Xeniphilius Tyne ’20, a City student who identifies as gender non-conforming but primarily presents as masculine. The need for gender-neutral restrooms might go unnoticed by some, but for gender non-conforming and transgender students, these restrooms can make a world of difference. Last fall, a group of students, parents, ICCSD employees and community members teamed up with researchers from the University of Iowa to form a task force specifically pertaining to LGBTQ students. Based on the results from the 2017 climate survey, the task force made a list of recommendations for the district to follow in

“ I CAN ’T I MAG I N E WHAT IT M U ST F E E L LI K E TO HAVE YOU R SCH OO L MAK E A DECI S I O N O R E NACT A PO LI CY THAT D I R ECTLY SU PPO RTS YOU AN D WH O YOU AR E .” - KE R R I BAR N H OU SE , CO LO RS ADVI SO R

order to improve feelings of safety and acceptance for LGBTQ students. According to the survey, only 21 percent of non-binary students said that they always felt safe in hallways and bathrooms. To combat this issue, the task force overwhelmingly recommends that all schools have a gender-neutral restroom that is easily accessible by students. For a student who doesn’t fit into the traditional gender binary, using a restroom that doesn’t correlate with their personal identity may contribute to feelings of gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria is the condition of feeling that one’s psychological identity is different from their biological sex. Conversely, going into a bathroom that feels more true to themselves may result in violence, harassment or intimidation. This is especially true for students


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After seeing an increase in students freely expressing different gender identities, West High has recently moved to open gender-neutral restrooms to accommodate non-binary students.

who may not be passing, meaning they have not transitioned to a point where they look like the gender with which they identify. “I’ve been kind of corralled and looked at. No one’s really said anything but they actually come up to me, look at me and get near me,” said Havana Heitman ’21, a transgender male student at West. “It’s like they’re threatening me non-verbally. They’re trying to intimidate me.” Under Iowa law, gender identity is currently protected and public schools cannot force students to use a bathroom they do not identify with. Therefore, transgender students do have the ability to use the bathroom they feel most accurately represents their identities. Yet even if students do feel comfortable using their correct restroom, biological factors may prevent them from doing so.

“I’m a trans man, but I still have my period. The problem is there are really no devices or anything I can use in the men’s bathroom, so I’m forced to use the women’s bathroom because of the different things available to me. If I’m passing as male, that can be awkward, or if I go to a male bathroom but I am not passing, that can also be awkward. It can just lead to a lot of bad social situations,” Heitman said. The process of getting a gender-neutral restroom at City started after their Student Senate came forward in favor of a more inclusive option for transgender and non-binary students. The group sent an email to Kingsley Botchway,

“ I ’ VE B E E N K I N D O F CO R R ALLE D AN D LOO K E D AT. N O O N E ’S R EALLY SAI D ANYTH I N G BUT TH EY ACTUALLY CO M E U P TO M E , LOO K AT M E AN D G ET N EAR M E . IT ’S LI K E TH EY ’ R E TH R EATE N I N G M E N O N VE R BALLY. TH EY ’ R E TRYI N G TO I NTI M I DATE M E .” - HAVANA H EITMAN ‘21 the Director of Equity and Engagement for the district, during the summer of 2017, citing reasons why City was in need of a gender-neutral restroom. Originally, the gender-neutral restroom at City was a men’s bathroom, but has since been converted in order to create the new all-gender restroom in a quick and cost-effective manner. According to Botchway, there was very little

backlash resulting from the decision. “There was some commentary, but that was misinformation. Basically there was a [rumor] that we were transitioning all the boy restrooms to gender-neutral restrooms and not changing any of the girl restrooms,” Botchway said. “That wasn’t the case. Once that was cleared up, we didn’t have any additional commentary.” Historically, the LGBTQ community has suffered many legislative defeats. Just last year alone, the transgender community in particular dealt with controversial bathroom bills in North Carolina and other parts of the country, as well as an attempted ban on transgender soldiers. For gender non-conforming students at City, the gender-neutral restroom appeared to be a long-awaited symbol of justice. “It was a major victory. At the time, I had just recently come out, too. It was scary to go from just coming out to already being like, ‘Okay, now I’m taking an [activist] role!’” Tyne said. According to Bihotza James-Lejarcegui ’18, a City student who assisted in getting the gender-neutral restroom, the situation still isn’t perfect. For example, there are no sanitary napkin receptacles in the stalls for students who get their periods. However, James-Lejarcegui still thinks the bathroom has been a positive addition. “I think it makes the school as a whole more inclusive. Just having it there, having students see it there, not having it be some weird thing in the corner but [something that] anyone can go into,” James-Lejarcegui said. With every new change comes the chance of controversy, but after years of debating the issue, some administrators and teachers believe West is at the point where these student needs outweigh the potential backlash. “I think people often look to us—Iowa City, West High, City High—as being leaders in this area. I’d love to be able to set the example because once maybe a few schools start doing it, then more will,” said Kerri Barnhouse, the advisor of West High’s Gay-Straight Alliance COLORS. “I can’t imagine what it must feel like to have your school make a decision or enact a policy that directly supports you and who you are.”

DESIGN BY TYLER THOMASSON


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SPRING ACTIVITIES By the time April rolls around, everybody is ready for spring: warm weather, green grass and hopefully avoiding spring cleaning. Even if you have a busy schedule, it’s important to get outside after being cooped up all winter. Here are a few ideas for you to get out this spring. BY NATALIE KATZ DESIGN BY THOMAS DUONG

OUT ON A LIMB Have you ever wanted to paddleboard on the Iowa River? How about trekking through Iowa’s renowned Effigy Mounds or bouldering at Governor Dodge State Park? Even if you’ve never considered these daring ideas until now, this spring is the time to try something new. Through the University of Iowa’s adventure trips, you can sign up for a variety of one to two-day

outings and spend the whole time outdoors. With most trips accommodating all experience levels, everybody can find something that piques their interest. If you and your friends are looking to fulfill your adrenaline needs, the University of Iowa’s Challenge Course is a must. With obstacles both close to the ground and much higher up, the course is enjoyable for everyone. Low

obstacles, at most seven feet off the ground, are fun team-building challenges to overcome with friends and are geared more toward problem-solving techniques. At a towering 30 feet off the ground, high elements include more physically challenging obstacles and are a great way to push your limits.

TREKKING THE TRAILS Many people groan and grumble at the mention of the word “hike.” It’s a lot of work to climb up a never-ending incline and enjoy your surroundings at the same time. However, there are plenty of trails to explore around Johnson County that might just change your opinion on hiking. Some favorites are Woodpecker Trail in Iowa City, Hickory Hill Park trail and the trails at Lake Macbride. Hickory Hill Park’s trail is more paved, while the others are maintained but more rustic. No matter the trail you choose, they all provide opportunities to get out and enjoy the fresh air. Pack a picnic, get your family loaded into the car and take a day to enjoy the calmness that seeps into you as you observe nature.


MARKET MADNESS

GEAR INTO ACTION

If you’ve already discovered everything there is to see in the Iowa City area, a perfect place for you to branch out into is the NewBo City Market in Cedar Rapids. With an ambiance similar to that of a farmer’s market, it is home to a wide spectrum of vendors ranging from farmers and artisans to food start-ups. Whether you come to try some locally-made food or attend one of the many weekly events, there is a lot to see and do here. Come to browse the stalls or try some bread from Saucy Focaccia. You can also come to check out one of the Market’s weekly healthy activities, such as Happier Hour and Meet Me at the Market, an event where people meet up to do different types of exercise. For a more complete schedule of events, visit the NewBo Market’s website or take a drive down to Cedar Rapids yourself and see what’s on the agenda.

If spring is a time to breathe in fresh air and feel the warmth of the sun, what better way to do that than to go for a long bike ride? With over 50 miles of both paved and wooded paths in the area, such as the Clear Creek and Willow Creek trails, there are endless options for finding the perfect trail. Be sure your destination rewards you for all your hard peddling: stop at a cafe to get a fresh smoothie, or bike downtown and walk through the pedestrian mall where something is sure to capture your interest. For those who want something a little more adventurous with a slightly dangerous appeal, take a trip to Lake Macbride where the rugged trails in the woods are marked for all levels of difficulty.

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PROFILE

APRIL 6, 2018


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PROFILE

SEEING THE BRIGHT SIDE

APRIL 6, 2018

It was always going to be tough performing with personality-controlling anxiety and creating art with the inability to see colors correctly. Erin Moses ’20, however, is tough. BY PRATEEK RAIKWAR

S

tarting in kindergarten, Erin Moses ’20 became obsessed with hand sanitizer. So obsessed, in fact, that her hands would

bleed. This impulsive obsession, however, was a result of something else entirely. Being afraid of what she couldn’t see, as she put it, was only one component of the anxiety that continues to influence her personality and actions. “I just feel sick all the time. Sometimes it’s just this feeling in my stomach, and other times I get used to it and don’t even notice it’s there,” Moses said. “Sometimes I just have to start crying and I don’t know why.” Although she first noticed it in kindergarten with her germophobia, this anxiety quickly began affecting other aspects of Moses’ day to day life. For example, Moses recalls arguing with her mom about the color of her purse being pink even though it was red. It turns out that this signalled the development of her new acquired color deficiency, an extremely rare side effect from taking fluoxetine for her anxiety. Acquired color deficiency caused Moses to progressively lose her ability to distinguish different colors beginning in sixth grade. This really started to become a problem once she got into art two years later. Fortunately for Moses, she changed medications before the color deficiency became more severe. As a result, she can still ballpark which colors look good together and, given her former ability to see normally, knows how to associate colors with specific images—crucial skills in producing her art. Furthermore, her condition has been improving over the past few years and may be cured by the beginning of college. In addition to this indirect effect, Moses remembers her anxiety affecting her ability to work on school assignments. She would ponder

over seemingly trivial tasks such as whether to use a pen or pencil, thinking that choosing the “wrong” one would affect her ability to get into college. As her anxiety got worse and consumed her, she decided to do something to fix it. “I just got really fed up with having to be afraid all of the time,” Moses said. “[For my germophobia] I stopped wiping down my desk, and it drove me nuts for a long time … It felt awful. Everything was falling apart, but at the same time, I knew it was good for me.” As she overcame her germophobia, Moses realized she could generalize this coping strategy to

do have some fun lines, but they’re not appropriate.” In meeting this goal and coping with her anxiety through her performances, Moses believes she is lucky to have found an activity that motivates her to defeat her anxiety. While theatere isn’t easy and took a while to find, she suggests to try new activities as a form of recovery for those struggling with anxiety. “Everyone has something that’s going to help them best,” Moses said. “The best way for people to find out what works for them is to go look for help, to ask people and to experiment with

“ I WANT TO B E A PRO F ESS I O NAL R AY O F SU N SH I N E . I J U ST WANT TO MAK E PEO PLE SM I LE AN D L AUG H ALL TH E TI M E … I DO HAVE SO M E F U N LI N ES, BUT TH EY ’ R E N OT APPRO PRIATE .”

- ERI N MOSES ‘20

her other anxieties. In doing this, she even found a new passion. “Something that helps me is getting out of my comfort zone, which is the reason I got into theater. Performing, being on stage and being in front of people helps me get used to being anxious,” Moses said. “It’s really important that people aren’t worried about me … I don’t want to make that someone else’s problem.” As far as the performances themselves, Moses specializes in comedic improvisation. “It’s what I want to do,” Moses said. “I want to be a professional ray of sunshine. I just want to make people smile and laugh all the time … I

different types of recovery.” In fact, Moses has combined this approach along with her desire to help and to make people happier, resulting in her goal of becoming a therapist. She believes her experiences with anxiety and her improvement could provide the necessary inspiration to see people “smile and laugh all the time.” “Even now I’m still recovering. I still have panic attacks, I still have some issues that I’m working through, but at the same time, I have come a long way,” Moses said. “I’m really proud of that. It’s just something I like to share with people to say, ‘You guys can do this, too.’” ART BY ERIN MOSES PHOTO BY MADDI SHINALL DESIGN BY MEGAN BOLAND


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A POWERFUL PERSPECTIVE BY ANNA BROWN & ALYSON KUENNEN

M

MOHAMMEDHILAL AL-ANI ‘21

ohammedHilal Al-Ani ’21 started his photography career at the age of 14, helping his cousin Mohammed Adnan edit pictures to upload to his website, Project Media. This website is Al-Ani and Adnan’s main platform for sharing their photography with the rest of the world. Learning everything about editing from either YouTube or Adnan, Al-Ani captured the interest of the Photographers of Iraq. Being a part of this 10,000 member group granted him the privilege to photograph anywhere in the country with an ID provided by the organization. This has allowed Al-Ani to capture beauty in the midst of turmoil. “I want to show the world how [Iraq] is, and

BAGHDAD, IRAQ, APRIL 10, 2016

In a place where the roads are too narrow to bike through, an older woman resting on the stoop of her home catches AlAni’s eye. “The photo take[s] the photographer, not the photographer take[s] the photo,” Al-Ani said. “She did something special ... I thought she was crying but she [was] not.” Instead she was cleaning her eyes, and after asking if taking the photo was okay, he shared it with the Photographers of Iraq. As a part of the organization, he is required to take more than 100 photos each month to submit in their magazine.

it’s not how they think,” Al-Ani said. “I want to show them my country is good and it’s safe.” Despite his love and devotion, he had to move to Istanbul, Turkey as a precaution against the ongoing hostilities in Iraq. Even after moving, he continues to advocate for a more wholesome image of his home country, as well as the whole world. “When I travel I can learn new things about this country and I take a picture, and then [I go to] another country,” Al-Ani said. “I want to take pictures for all the countries when I travel.” Now, after moving almost 6,000 miles to Iowa City, Al-Ani is one step closer to capturing the world.

NORTHERN IRAQ, APRIL 17, 2016

Amidst the hundreds of thousands of people living within refugee camps, Al-Ani sees Lena, a young girl displaced after a bombing destroyed her house. Looking up at him, she is curious about his camera. “Can you stop like this?” Al-Ani asks her. She does, and he takes the photo. “I care [about how] they’re doing ’cause I get the pictures of them,” Al-Ani said. Delivering the printed photo is customary should the subject ask. However, Al-Ani could not find Lena after leaving the camp.


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NORTHERN IRAQ, APRIL 18, 2016

The following day, Al-Ani sees two young boys in the refugee camp and asks them the same question. He discovers they are not siblings, but rather just two kids sticking together. While Al-Ani was given permission to take their photo, he does not always ask before the shot. “Sometimes you meet someone in the street, he’s crying, so you have to ask him, ‘Why you crying?’ But here, you don’t have to ask, you have to take the picture.” PHOTOS PROVIDED BY MOHAMMEDHILAL AL-ANI HEADSHOT BY ALYSON KUENNEN DESIGN BY CATHERINE JU

WSS

FOR MORE PHOTOS, GO TO WSSPAPER.COM


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PROFILE

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Assistant Principal Luke DeVries is passionate about pickling cucumbers; he pickles with his brother Levi for family and friends.

I

t’s Saturday afternoon, and assistant principal Luke DeVries is cutting up the hottest pepper in the world—the Carolina Reaper. He’s creating a brine to pickle local cucumbers, adding in peppers to create the hottest version of D’s Dills: “HOLY %#&@!” Luke* began pickling cucumbers around 10 years ago with his brother, Levi DeVries. At a relative’s house the brothers noticed how everyone enjoyed eating habanero pickles and decided to take their shot at creating their own. “The pickle scene isn’t big anywhere,” Luke said. “There’s an opportunity to break into the pickle market.” It was difficult for the brothers to make their pickles regularly when Luke lived in San Antonio, where he worked for nine years. They were only able to pickle when Luke came to Iowa to visit. When an assistant principal job opened up in the city where Luke went to college, he and his wife Mayra moved to Iowa City. They lived in Levi’s basement for six months before finding a permanent residence; with both pickle brothers living a few feet away from each other, their pickling took off. “It was like a relaunch,” Mayra said. “They had this new passion for [pickling] again.” Pickling is a time for the DeVries brothers to catch up and remain engaged in an activity they are both passionate about. “Even though we live in the same town, we both have busy lives and don’t get to spend a ton of time together,” Levi said. “Picklemaking is time we can set aside to turn on some tunes, have a few beverages and just hang out together.” Pickling cucumbers begins with sterilizing the jars, which are heated in the oven to kill bacteria. The brine is prepared using vinegar, water, spices (these are kept secret) and the peppers. The brothers cut the cucumbers into spears and stuff the jars with them before pouring in the boiling brine. “We try and use all local products as much as we can,” Luke said. “We started with cucumbers out of my parents’ garden, and sometimes people give us cucumbers they

THE PICKLE BROTHERS BY NINA ELKADI

grow now.” D’s Dills, the brand name of the pickles, produces five spice levels. The order of least to most spicy is as follows: More Tingly Than Hot, Disco Inferno, BLAZE of GLORY, FIRE in your HOLE and HOLY %#&@!. The spice level is determined by what types of peppers are used; in the hottest level you can expect to taste Ghost, Carolina Reaper and Scorpion Peppers. According to Luke, the BLAZE of GLORY pickles are the crowd favorite. While Mayra agrees, Luke holds a slightly different set of beliefs when it comes to eating the pickles. “If you’re going to eat a spicy pickle, you might as well eat the spiciest pickle,” Luke said. Levi says this is easier said than done. “It also always cracks me up seeing Luke eat a really spicy pickle,” Levi said. “The sweat beads on his forehead, he makes some high-pitched squeals I didn’t know were

possible from a grown man, and before long he has his whole face under the kitchen faucet.” To the dismay of many readers, regulations about where the pickles should be made mean the pickles are not currently for sale. “If someday we win the lottery or a large investor would like to partner with us, maybe we could take it to the next level. No pun intended,” Levi said. Although Luke and Levi don’t see themselves ever quitting their day jobs to be fulltime picklers, they do it for much more than the recognition and money. “I do it for the camaraderie, the joy of eating pickles and putting a smile and somewhat a bit of misery on everyone’s face who tries one,” Luke said. *Since there are three DeVries’ in this article, we are calling each by their first name. However, WSS does not condone the use of “Luke” when a student refers to the assistant principal.


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“ I F YOU ’ R E GOI NG TO EAT A SPICY PICKLE , YOU M IGHT AS WE LL EAT TH E SPICI EST PICKLE .” - LU KE DEVRI ES , ASSISTANT PRI NCI PAL

A STEP BY STEP GUIDE

TO PPIIC CKKLLIIN NG G TO

1 2 3

Prepare seasonings, cut the cucumbers and peppers, prepare the brine. Boil the brine and fill the jars with seasoning, peppers and cucumbers. Pour the brine into the jars, put the lid on the jar and put jars in boiling water until the lid seals. PHOTOS BY SEAN BROWN DESIGN BY CATHERINE JU


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DREAM BY KHLOOD SAEED

I dream of a world where we can all be accepted This world we live in surrounded by beautiful faces, minds, religions, cultures, colors, shapes and sizes Yet I’m tired of being tested In a world where we are always neglected And I’m sick and tired of being selected, suspected, corrected Everything but interconnected And I’m sick and tired of saying the same words But I just want to be heard in a world where we matter the most There is not enough time to be transferred, unheard in a blur We all need the bleed, the speed, the need to unite us We just need to love and respect This world just needs us to connect We just need to adjust in trust Only then can we thrust All I’m asking is to Show me love.

A WORD IS WORTH A THOUSAND PICTURES Through her spirit, actions, and most importantly, her words, Khlood Saeed ’20 is bold. BY ABBIE CALLAHAN & JESSICA MOONJELY Boldness is defined as the willingness to take risks and act innovatively. To step out of the box. To speak the unspeakable. To challenge the norm. With the help of slam poetry, Khlood Saeed ’20 has learned the true strength that comes with finding her voice. For the past three years, Saeed has spoken out through her slam poetry. Because slam poetry is written for the sole purpose of performance, poets focus on their rhythm and emphasis to add drama. Emotion and meaning charge each word. No pause or accent is accidental. Even the body movements help tell the story. Slam poets use their experiences and impressions of the world to deliver hard hitting performances. Saeed is no different. Her thought-provoking words convey strong messages of change and injustice. She writes about topics that hit close to home for her, such as black rights and fe-

male rights. However, Saeed hasn’t always been this vocal. “If you told me when I was a seventh grader that I’d be a poet and I’d perform in front of all these people I wouldn’t believe you because I was just so shy,” Saeed said. Despite her timid nature, her seventh-grade Literacy teacher Anah Austin noticed her unique writing voice. Austin decided that Northwest Junior High’s slam poetry club would not only challenge Saeed but also allow her to thrive in a creative and accepting environment. “I think we should all go after new experiences we wonder about. They help us grow and look at the world a different way,” Austin said. “Khlood’s deep thinking and writing abilities let others see the world in a different way. I wanted to expose other students to that.” As Saeed grew more confident in her abilities,

slam poetry became the outlet to channel her creativity. “I feel that [Saeed] began to really find her voice in slam poetry and hear how much her voice mattered,” Austin said. “I hope she began to see that her voice had a major impact on others in a positive way.” Now, Saeed isn’t afraid of tackling controversial or heavy topics. She draws inspiration from the media and current events. What makes her poetry unique are the angles she chooses. For example, when looking at the topic of police brutality, Saeed incorporates other issues that are important to her, like women’s rights. This process leads her to explore topics such as police brutality against females. “I get the big picture and try to chop it up into little bits to see which part is most talked about and which isn’t,” Saeed said.


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Though Saeed usually draws inspiration from others’ lives, she also takes advantage of her background as a black Muslim woman to talk about other people’s misconceptions of her culture. ¨This one time me and two of my friends were walking in the mall and this group of college students walked by and one of them said ‘Terrorists!’ loudly and my friends and I didn’t know what to do,” Saeed said. “I know with me being a black Muslim woman, there are going to be stereotypes. All I can do is prove them wrong.”

to grow in numerous ways. Saeed has become impactful, expressive and passionate; most importantly, she has learned the true effect she can make on the world around her. “Poetry lets us play with the power of words. We get to learn how to manipulate language to make our point, whether we want to be funny or serious or outrageous,” Austin said. “It teaches us how to capture an audience and make them listen. Words are power. The more we learn how to use them in different formats for different audiences, the more power we have.”

“ I K N OW WITH M E B E I N G A B L ACK M U SLI M WO MAN , TH E R E AR E GO I N G TO B E STE R EOT YPES. ALL I CAN DO I S PROVE TH E M WRO N G.” In Saeed’s poem “Dream” she conveys these challenges: I’m sick and tired of being selected, suspected, corrected Everything but interconnected As a result of experiencing prejudice, she has strived to change these stereotypical perceptions by incorporating them into her poetry. Saeed is thankful to have a platform to share her voice and ideas because she’s aware others may not have this level of support. She writes for minority groups who don’t have the opportunity to share their stories. In her writing, the main message Saeed conveys is one of understanding and of perspective. “I want everyone to know that everyone is the same, but we all just have different stories to be told,” Saeed said. “If we sit down together and just listen to each other, we can learn so much.” Saeed has had the opportunity to spread this idea around the community by performing her works at West High’s Unity Choir Concert and for organizations such as GirlUp and Youth Rising. “Honestly, I love poetry. I would do it every single day if I could,” Saeed said, “It’s just an amazing feeling to put your words out there and have everybody contemplate what you’ve said—how your words can affect others.” Saeed’s journey through writing has led her PHOTO BY ALLIE SCHMITT-MORRIS DESIGN BY FRANCES DAI

- KHLOOD SAEED ’20

AMERICA THE GREAT BY KHLOOD SAEED

Welcome to America America the great Where size zero fits all and having blue eyes is a trait Where we are all expected to fit in a little box but I refused to be locked Killing bits of us will keep us in chains And all for what just to fit in This country was built on our bones And what’s the point of going back instead of forth And all I have left is me So if I lose me who will I be If I look like everyone else How can I accept myself Welcome to America America the great Our differences is the beauty to us To coexist with one another we must first learn to love each other We are all different in many ways And if you ask me that’s the only way We have made everything a competition a repetition in us This society is tearing us apart We need to break this cycle before it breaks us We can’t be subjected to hate the only part that makes us Welcome to America America the … Well we’re working on it.



Voices of immigrants in America

HIDDEN AMONG US A look into how the American immigration system impacts students of varying legal statuses

BY ANJALI HUYNH

“E

conomy class, please prepare to board the flight.” A young child stands in line with her parents. She glances around the airport, taking in all the people, the luggage, the enormity of it all. Clinging onto her parents with one hand and holding a one-way ticket in the other, she boards the plane. Thousands of miles away, another child sits on a truck with several family members. It is crowded with other migrants who, like her family, risked everything to leave the dangers of home and find a way into the land of opportunity. Though the situations of these two children are very different, they have one thing in common: they are foreigners in a land they consider home. Time and time again, immigration has been catapulted into the national spotlight as numbers of immigrants in the United States continue to climb every year. According to a 2015 Pew Research Center study, the number of immigrants reached a record high in that year, with 43.2 million first-generation immigrants accounting for 13.4 percent of the population. Around one million new immigrants arrive every year, meaning that immigration remains a constant topic of discussion in modern society. Among these new residents are parents seek-

ing better futures for their family in the United States, either legally or illegally. Their children enter the American school system, where, according to the Migration Policy Institute, they may be subject to discrimination. A Migration Policy Institute study about discrimination cited personal discrimination, such as teachers having low expectations, and structural discrimination, like school segregation, as factors that play roles in isolating young immigrants in school. Within the ICCSD, however, students do not have to fear discrimination based on legal status from administration, as the district does not ask students for this information. “The district is permitted to educate every child who walks through the door, so [legal status] is not something that we ask,” said Superintendent Steve Murley. “There are times when that information is shared with us voluntarily by students or their parents, but that is not something that we actively seek out from our children.” However, this does not hold true at the national level. Immigrant students, both documented and not, face a multitude of issues, including pursuing higher education, remaining with their families and building futures for themselves.


CHAPTER 1

THE FORGOTTEN DREAMERS

H

er first recollection of being different began with an art competition. “Our [fourth-grade] teacher introduced the class to this drawing contest by Google where elementary students would draw creative ways to spell ‘Google,’” Pareen Mhatre ’18 recalled. “I spent all day on my illustration [and] worked really hard on it. However, there was a requirement that those who submit illustrations must be permanent United States residents or American citizens. Not being able to submit a piece for some contest doesn’t seem like a big deal, but back then, I was really upset.” This was only the first of many difficulties Mhatre would face as an Indian citizen living in the United States. Mhatre was born in India in April of 2000. Four months later, her parents moved to the United States legally. After briefly living in Cincinnati, the family moved to Iowa City in 2001. As law-abiding immigrants, Mhatre’s parents applied for permanent residency in 2012, the earliest time possible to apply, and have been waiting to receive it since.

“The future is a little bit shaky and we don’t know how to approach the situation [...] My future shouldn’t have to be dependent on my immigration status, wherever I go.” -Pareen Mhatre ‘18

Meanwhile, from kindergarten on, Mhatre was educated in the ICCSD. An AP and honors student, she strived from a young age to achieve her dream of attending medical school and becoming a pediatrician. There was no guideline she had to meet to participate in extracurriculars, no legal status she had to have to take a course. However, this all changed toward the end of her high school career. “My legal status has never been questioned, has never been taken into account,” Mhatre said. “It’s like [everyone] treated me as if we were all equal, and I’m so glad they did that. But when I started to apply for colleges, that’s when I realized I’m an international student.” International students are citizens of one country but college-educated in another. While she has lived in the United States for almost 18 years, she is still considered an international student while applying to colleges because she has not received permanent residency. This means she is evaluated alongside others who have never set foot on American soil. “I just think that is ridiculous because I’ve lived in this country ever since I was four months old,” Mhatre said. “My education is 100 percent American and the education of another person from India is 100 percent Indian, yet we are treated the same.” Mhatre’s family, along with over 1.5 million skilled immigrants, are currently stuck in green card backlog. This occurs when there are too many green card applicants from a country, as the United States only allows seven percent of employment-based immigrant applicants from each country to receive green cards. Consequently, wait times for green cards for certain countries have increased at stratospheric rates. According to the organization Skilled Immigrants in America, this waiting period is typically around one year but has increased for certain countries: four years for Chinese immigrants, six years for Filipino immigrants and up to 70 years for Indians. Because of these backlogs, immigrants’ children remain on visas intended for temporary stays. These roughly 300,000 children are called “Deferred Action for Legal Childhood Arrivals Dreamers.” While they can legally stay in the United States, they do not have access to certain academic benefits like most scholarships or federal financial aid. As a result, they face high college costs and larger application pools, making their futures uncertain. “[Becoming a pediatrician] has been my dream since I was very young,” Mhatre said. “But it’s

“Whenever I visit India, it doesn’t feel like home to me; it just feels like [a] country that I’m going to visit during break. Of course, I love the culture, I love my family, but I was raised here, and I feel American.” -Pareen Mhatre ‘18

going to cost us a lot to get there, and not a lot of [medical] schools in the United States accept international students … My future shouldn’t have to be dependent on my immigration status, wherever I go.” To add to this uncertainty, if they do not have a green card by the time they turn 21 years old, they have to apply for their own student or work visas, leave the country voluntarily or face deportation. If they choose to get a new visa, they would find themselves at the end of the several-year-long waiting line for a green card. “[My parents and I] don’t know what to do,” Mhatre said. “The future is a little shaky and we don’t know how to approach our situation because we don’t know anybody that has been through this before, so we don’t have the guidance.” Despite being an Indian citizen, Mhatre’s long residence in the United States has made her birth country a foreign place. Without immigration reform, children of legal immigrants, like Mhatre, could risk losing the only country they have ever known. “Whenever I visit India, it doesn’t feel like home to me; it just feels like [a] country that I’m going to visit during break,” Mhatre said. “Of course, I love the culture, I love my family, but I was raised here, and I feel American.”


CHAPTER 2

A WORLD OF UNCERTAINTY

“¡A

“They are just as American as I ever will be. There is no difference in loyalties for this country between them and others.” -Isaac Medina, University of Iowa Student

quí, estamos, no nos vamos! ¡Aquí, estamos, no nos vamos!” This chant was heard multiple times across the Iowa City Ped Mall, as hundreds of individuals from around the Iowa City area gathered on Sept. 7, 2017. They came together to protest the Trump administration’s latest decision: rescinding the Deferred Actions for Child Arrivals, or DACA, program. The DACA program was first created under the Obama administration in 2012. It is not a pathway to citizenship, but rather temporarily blocks legal action against undocumented immigrants. “DACA is basically prosecutorial discretion,” Malott said. “It’s someone coming out and saying to the federal government, ‘I am here. Defer any action on me for several years.’ That’s why it’s called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.” This two-year program gives recipients social security numbers, thus enabling them to attend college, obtain driver’s licenses or apply for work permits. According to the United States Center for Immigration Services, as of September 2017, there were roughly 700,000 DACA recipients; however, the Migration Policy Institute believes that over a million people likely qualify for this program. The future of these recipients became unclear in September of 2017, when the Trump administration chose to rescind the program. Days afterward, the Iowa City “Defend DACA” event was organized by University of Iowa student and DREAM Iowa president Emiliano Martinez. “We had to do something,” Martinez said. “We had to activate our group and use our voice as representation of DACA students ... We had to focus on how we could bring people back to the [main] issues and not fall back into a lot of pessimistic conversation when we’re talking about legal status protection for thousands of dreamers’ children.” The original date that the program was supposed to expire was March 5; however, a federal judge blocked this order, so United States Center for Immigration Services will continue to accept DACA application renewals until further action is taken. Without a final decision being made, hundreds of thousands of DACA recipients will remain unsure of what comes next in their future. University of Iowa student Isaac Medina, a son of two DACA recipients, urged others to support the dreamers, saying, “They are just as American as I will ever be. There is no difference in loyalties for this country between them and others.” PHOTOS BY PAREEN MHATRE ART BY ANGELA ZIRBES DESIGN BY CRYSTAL KIM


CHAPTER 3

WHAT COMES NEXT Pursuit of immigration reform


“People like me just want to be included under the law.” -Pareen Mhatre ‘18

F

or years, immigration has plagued national headlines. However, with the rescindal of the DACA program in September of 2017, talks of immigration reform and how this may be accomplished have resurfaced once again. This issue has not only raised concerns with the public, but also with legislators on both sides of the political spectrum. Iowan representative Dave Loebsack is one political figure that has strived to implement immigration reform in ways such as co-sponsoring the DREAM Act. “It has been clear for a long time that the status quo isn’t working,” Loebsack said. “I believe that we are a nation of immigrants, but also a nation of laws. With little progress being made, we must move forward with a realistic and pragmatic, but tough system that enforces the rule of law and ensures accountability for those who came here illegally while not tearing apart families who have been here for many years.” Loebsack particularly addressed President

Donald Trump’s decision to end the DACA program as an area in need of work. “The President’s decision to end the DACA program was disheartening,” Loebsack said. “We should not allow children who were brought to this country through no action of their own ... to be deported to some place they may not even know.” Mhatre believes that DACA is not the only immigration issue in need of restructuring. She says that the struggles of legal immigrants often do not receive the attention that DACA recipients do, thus causing struggles of immigrants like herself to be ignored. “It just seems like breaking the law [is a] a requirement in order to get government protection of your immigration status, and that’s something that I don’t have,” Mhatre said. “So in a way, it’s like if you come here illegally, you might get government protection. I’m here legally and I don’t.” While Mhatre supports the DACA program, she hopes that legal immigrants become part of the conversation regarding immigration reform. “[While applying to colleges], I was asked if I was protected by DACA,” Mhatre said. “And with DACA, I could get access to certain scholarships and aid, but with my status, I couldn’t. So there are illegal immigrants who are getting access to opportunities that people like me should have access to as well.” There have also been several questions regarding the safety of students within schools in this uncertain time, and several universities across the country have refused to release the statuses of their students because of this. While DACA recipients are legal residents, there is much concern that if the program ends, these children may risk being sought out by the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement for deportation. However, according to Superintendent Murley, the ICCSD’s biggest obligation is to making sure they follow legal requirements while still protecting students and staff. “Obviously one of the things that we want to do is that we’re cooperative with law enforcement agencies, but at the same time, we have an obligation to our students and their families,” Murley said. “We want to make sure that we are protecting their rights ... so someone from any law

enforcement agency came into the district and requested information, we’d want to get more information about that request, and then we’d likely wind up working with our legal counsel to make sure we understand what our obligations are to that agency and to our parents and their students.” As debates continue within the national government, Malott and Mhatre reiterate the need for immigration reform in the United States. “We haven’t really had any immigration reform, so I’m glad it’s at the forefront and people are talking about it because it’s certainly an important issue,” Malott said. “Hopefully now with DACA being in the forefront, now’s the time because we have a lot of young people … that consider themselves citizens because they’ve been here for so long. Someone else made a choice about them and their future and decided to bring them to the U.S. for whatever reason. We have this population of people that we just need to figure out [what to do with].” “Our voices have remained unheard, so it’s a little disappointing,” Mhatre said. “People like me just want to be included under the law.”

“One of the things that we want to do is that we’re cooperative with law enforcement agencies, but at the same time, we have an obligation to our students and their families.” -Steve Murley, Superintendent


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A DV E R T I S E M E N T S APRIL 6, 2018

THANKS TO OUR

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WEST SIDE STORY A LOOK BEHIND THE SCENES

BY ANNA BROWN & LUCY POLYAK

West High’s spring musical, “West Side Story,” proves that great challenges often result in great rewards.

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ONSTAGE

“W

est Side Story” is a musical most high schools can only dream of attempting to put on. With intense dance scenes, demanding vocals and arguably one of the hardest orchestral scores of all time, this show is more difficult than any of the other classics of its time. However, that’s exactly why Theatre West is taking it on. Following “Les Misérables” in the spring of 2017, a show centered almost entirely on vocal ability, Theatre West directors Ann Rocarek and Katy Nahra knew they had to pick a production that was very different but just as impressive. From this came the decision to put on a musical with more elaborate features, such as ten complex dances. “The show is going to be very dance-heavy. That’s pretty unique to us as a high school, that we’re not shying away from letting it be danceheavy,” Rocarek said. “It’s a beast. [But] by the end of everything, this show is gonna be incredible.” Dance captain Joseph Verry ’18 feels the same way. This is his second year as a dance captain for Theatre West, but he says his experience helping with this show differs greatly from his work on “Les Misérables.” Throughout both musicals, Verry worked to teach and perfect choreography created by Michael Kohli and Ashlynnd Jones of National Dance Academy. However, “West Side Story” gave him more musical numbers to attend to than usual. “More than any other musical I’ve been in, the dancing plays a large part in the progression of the show. The styles of dance that accompany the difficult music are on another level [than years past],” Verry said. “Although it’s difficult, I know the actors and actresses can handle [it].” All of the complex elements of this show could not have been possible without the cast. Every student involved has a different skill set and level of expertise, resulting in everyone being able to bring something different to the production. This has led many members of the cast to rise to the occasion and become leaders. One of these student leaders is Paul Amrani ’18. After spending two years at the Houston Ballet Academy, Amrani returned to Iowa City to finish his senior year. He decided to audition for “West Side Story” because it’s been one of his dream musicals to be part of. During rehearsals, despite not being a dance captain, Amrani was able to help many actors who were struggling to learn particular parts of choreography. “I like to think that I [am] a resource for people if they don’t understand a step or … how to do something better. I think that this will make the dancing in this show stand out even more,” Amrani said. Emma Furlong ’21 is one of two freshmen in the musical, and despite this being her first show


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with Theatre West, she fit right in with the rest of the cast. During her time in this show, Furlong greatly enjoyed getting to explore her different strengths onstage. “My favorite part of the show is singing and dancing ‘America’, and also hanging out with all my friends … I met a lot of great people in things like S.P.I.T. (Student Produced Innovative Theatre) that made me want to audition,” Furlong said. The cast of Theatre West’s “West Side Story” have all grown as performers throughout the show. Despite the new tasks and experiences, the cast wouldn’t have wanted the preparation for the production to have gone any other way. “West Side Story” runs from April 12-14 and everyone involved hopes to see you all there. “The actors and actresses have put lots of time into learning the music, the dances, and their lines; the culmination of these things are sure to make an entertaining show. I recommend anyone come to the show and see [our] version of [this] classic,” Verry said.

OFFSTAGE

B

ehind curtains and closed doors, many West High students are hard at work creating a world straight out of a history book. These students make up the nine technical crews that have been tasked with creating everything from the props to the makeup to the lighting designs for “West Side Story.” Their job is to make sure that every single aspect of the musical comes together in a visually impactful way. Callie Dains ’18, head of set crew, has had quite a bit to take on for this show. The plans for this set involve 16-foot-tall towering buildings, some of which revolve onstage. “Doc’s [Drugstore, a set piece,] will be really, really cool [because] it rotates. So the outside will be something interesting and then we can turn it around and it’ll be a little shop with a bar and stairs down into it. It’s been really fun to work on,” Dains said. In addition to Doc’s Drugstore, the set for “West Side Story” has more separate parts than any other recent Theatre West production. While this felt like a daunting task at first, it has proven to be less intimidating than expected, especially with the help of two adult tech directors. Jeff Smith has been West High’s theatre tech director for over eight years, but “West Side Story” will be the last show he helps out with. While Smith is currently planning to move to New York City in the near future, he knows the mem-

“ TH E CO M M U N IT Y THAT YOU F E E L H E R E I S [AMAZ I N G]. TH E R E AR E SO MANY D I F F E R E NT T YPES O F PEO PLE I NVO LVE D I N TH EATR E AN D EVE RYO N E B RI N GS SO M ETH I N G D I F F E R E NT AN D F U N . THAT ’S WHAT MAK ES TH EATR E [WEST] SO SPECIAL .” -JEFF SMITH, THEATRE WEST TECH DIRECTOR

ories he made while working with Theatre West will stick with him forever. “The community that you feel here is [amazing]. There are so many different types of people involved in theatre and everyone brings something different and fun. That’s what makes Theatre [West] so special,” Smith said. Replacing Smith will be Beth Halverson. Halverson grew up participating in lots of theatrical productions in her hometown of Spencer, Iowa, both onstage and off, and recently obtained a degree in education from the University of Iowa. She is currently a substitute teacher in the ICCSD in addition to her position with Theatre West. Halverson’s experience at West has been very positive. She has greatly appreciated how accepting the Theatre West community has been since her arrival in January. “I think [Theatre West] is awesome and this program is awesome. I love that I’ve been welcomed with open arms,” Halverson said. “Having Jeff here really gives me an opportunity to see not only what you guys are used to, but also some different ways of building. He just has knowledge and it’s giving me a chance to learn routines without necessarily having to hit the ground running on my own.” Another crucial part of bringing this show’s complex world to life has been the costuming. Costumes head Niki Alden ’18 has found a lot of enjoyment in finding beautiful, time period-appropriate pieces for all the actors to wear. “[Costume crew] is really fun and you end up with such an amazing product that you can be super proud of since we put our heart and soul into [these costumes],” Alden said. Amanda Aaberg ‘18 also feels that working on the costumes crew throughout her high school career has been a very rewarding experience. “The [costumes] family is usually very close. Lights is really close, set is really close, we’re all really close … It’s been fun to work with these people [on a show] one last time,” Aaberg said. There seems to be a place for anyone backstage of “West Side Story” as every part of this show is full of students pursuing something they love to work on. “Every single person contributes to this show,” Rocarek said. “Every kid has something important to do. Frontstage, backstage, up in the booth, down in the pit … This show has things all moving at the same time, and everyone has to be [focused] at all times.”


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PIT ORCHESTRA

U

nderneath the stage of West High School’s Arganbright Auditorium, 39 students stumble around as quietly as possible while shrouded in darkness. The only thing to light their paths are a few television monitors aimed on the stage. After each student manages to find their correct seat, they pull out their instruments to begin tuning. Finally, the lights in the auditorium dim and a hush falls over the audience. Once the director lifts his baton, the pit orchestra raises their instruments in anticipation of the show to come. Due to the challenging musical composition by Leonard Bernstein, “West Side Story” has a reputation for being very demanding of its players. Despite this, pit orchestra director Jon Welch wants the show to remain almost completely student based, only bringing in one professional player as lead trumpet. “I think sometimes we take for granted here at West what we all have,” Welch said. “Here, we just have an abundance of talented [musicians] that can play the stuff and can do it. As a teacher, why would you hire when you have students come in [that can] actually [play] this … We’re very fortunate, not every school has what we have here.” Welch is looking forward to performing this specific musical, not only for the variety of musical genres and styles, but for the core values showcased as well. These values are ones Welch believes demonstrate the best and worst parts of American history and convey important messages about social justice. “This is absolutely my favorite,” Welch said. “[It’s] a story of forbidden love, but love that transcends social class and racial lines … It’s something that, while it’s fun to play and listen to … it has a very important social message that we all need to revisit.” In addition to “West Side Story” containing modern lessons, this musical has provided an opportunity for new players to interact with a variety of students as well. “Everyone seems really nice and it’s been fun getting to know people I don’t normally talk to,” said Anna Carmen ’20, a french horn player for “West Side Story.” “There’s no hostile vibes [coming] off of anyone. Even if I don’t know them, everyone seems encouraging.” In contrast to the cast and crew, students in pit orchestra do not typically interact on a daily basis with the rest of the students involved in the musical because of the different rehearsal times and spaces provided for each group. However, this has only strengthened the bond between

these musicians. “I would say that the dynamic is somewhat of a family, as cheesy as that sounds,” said Sophia Chen ’19, a violinist for “Les Misérables” and “West Side Story.” “Especially this year … we have really hard music, so I think we sort of bond over how hard it is.” The musicians not only bond over the difficulty of the music, but through pranks pulled on Welch as well. “One of the funniest memories I have last year is when we had … ‘red and bread day’ in honor of the French, so we bought Mr. Welch a baguette and a red poncho,” Chen said. “During … ‘Do You Hear The People Sing?’ he actually cued the choir with the baguette. I still can’t believe he actually agreed to go along with it.” Beyond buying Welch the bread, one student also decided to create a collection of memes that would later be taped to Welch’s scores for the music. One of the most elaborate pranks involved the entire cast, crew and pit singing ‘Happy Birthday’ and buying a birthday cake despite Welch’s birthday not being for several more months. “There were a lot of pranks pulled, but it was a really good time,” Welch said. “It was all in good fun and we had a blast. That’s the thing in pit

orchestra, we work hard but we [also] play hard [because] it can get too stressful if you don’t do that.” Another appealing aspect to being involved in pit orchestra beside the pranks is taking part in creating the live music that accompanies the cast. Carmen believes this is an important role because live music is more moving than that played on a CD. “I don’t know how to put my finger on it, but there’s something just magical about hearing the music being played live and knowing people are playing that right now,” Carmen said. “You can feel it vibrating and making your brain jump around. But then … if it’s on a CD, you’re hearing it, but you’re not feeling it inside of you.” With hours of rehearsal underway, “West Side Story” has proven to be a challenge to those involved. Nonetheless, Welch believes the bigger the challenge is, the more rewarding it proves to be at the final show when hearing the thunderous applause of the audience. “At the end of the show you’ve given everything you had and you’re exhausted … You instantly start to feel the memories and you know you’ve just created something better than yourself and everybody just came together to make something magical.”

“ I DO N ’T K N OW H OW TO PUT MY F I N G E R O N IT, BUT TH E R E ’S SO M ETH I N G J U ST MAG I CAL ABOUT H EARI N G TH E M U S I C B E I N G PL AYE D LIVE AN D K N OWI N G PEO PLE AR E PL AYI N G THAT RI G HT N OW.” -ANNA CARMEN ‘20

WSS

FOR MORE COVERAGE, GO TO WSSPAPER.COM

DESIGN BY JUNHEE LEE


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JOKE’S ON

YOU

April 1 is a day when people play pranks on their family, friends or strangers. Sometimes these jokes don’t go as planned, but two West High students and a teacher had April Fools’ days that went over without a hitch. BY REAGAN HART

FUN FACT! French-speaking countries have a tradition called Poisson d’Avril, translated to “fish of April.” On April 1, children try to tape a paper fish onto each other’s backs. It is similar to the classic prank of taping a “kick me” sign to people. Sometimes, a real dead fish was used.

THE MONSTER ESSAY When a student falls asleep in class they might miss out on important content or homework assignments. In English teacher John Cooper’s class a student might miss out on the planning of an April Fools’ prank. Cooper had a student in class that kept falling asleep. In the past, if he had someone fall asleep, he would just startle them with a mask he kept in his desk. However, after doing this a couple times, he knew it wasn’t effective for this student. Cooper had to step it up a notch. One day, after another student reminded him that the

day after was April 1, he knew what he had to do. “[I said to the rest of the class] we are just going to pretend like it’s normal and … after class you have to tell her there is a paper due explaining why using the mask was more effective or less effective than my normal teaching,” Cooper said. “I put the mask on and then someone kick[ed] her and she jolted awake and we just kept going. Everyone played along really well; no one was laughing.” After class, the girl went home and wrote a paper about the mask. The

next day she came to class ready to hand in her two-page essay. “I started giggling because I didn’t think she was going to fall for it as hard as she did. There was other kids in the class that started laughing first,” Cooper said. They then proceeded to explain that it was an April Fools’ prank. However, it was more than just a fun prank for the rest of the class as it got Cooper’s point across. “She didn’t fall asleep again in class, which was pretty good,” Cooper said.


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MINTY FRESH OREOS Seven-year-old Dylan Philibert ’20 licks the cream filling off some Oreos. She avoids the cookie part, but not because she dislikes it. It’s because she has plans to use them later. Philibert filled the Oreos with toothpaste so it looked like the creme. Then she filled the empty toothpaste bottle with mayonnaise. Her targets were her older siblings. Unfortunately for her, mayonnaise does not look like toothpaste, and her prank was discovered before it could

play out. However, the Oreo prank went according to plan. “For the Oreos, I just heard [them when] they must have gotten out the Oreos. I heard a bunch of yells and [shouts of] ‘What the heck!’ Then there was a lot of questioning [from] all the siblings,” Philibert said. They threw away the toothpaste Oreos and discovered their younger sibling was the culprit. Although funny for Philibert in the moment, it wasn’t so funny when she had to go

to her parents for protection. “[My parents] thought it was pretty funny. They said, ‘Don’t do it again; you will probably get beaten up by your siblings,’” Philibert said. Even though the prank was several years ago, Philibert still enjoys April Fools’ Day. “I think it can be super fun depending on your age. You know what, [for] all ages. It’s not a big holiday but it can really fun if done correctly,” Philibert said.

STICKY SITUATION An orange, blue and pink car drives down the road. It’s not a bad paint job, but rather a car covered in sticky notes. Marijke Nielsen ’19 decided to use five whole pads of sticky notes for an April Fools’ Day prank on her mom’s car. “There were so many of them. They were all over, [even] the whole top of the car. I used a ladder to get [up there],” Nielsen said. Then she waited for her mom to come out and yelled, “You’ve been pranked!”

“Obviously she noticed pretty quickly, but she walked out and thought everything was normal and [then] did a double take,” Nielsen said. Since her mom wasn’t able able to safely see out of the windshield, Nielsen’s mom took an ice scraper to the sticky notes. It worked well, but her mom had to get to work so there wasn’t enough time for them to remove the rest; they drove off with the rest still attached. Nielsen found it funny to watch the cars coming down the opposite lane

stare at their car. “The [sticky notes] that [were] on the hood of the car ... would fly up, but stick to the car. You would think they would fly off but they didn’t,” Nielsen said, “That’s why it was so fun driving because there was just a bunch of sticky notes sticking up in the air.” Nielsen enjoys April Fools’ day every year, so this prank is just one of many. “Sometimes people take life too seriously. April Fools’ is a good day to take a break from that and have a good laugh,” Nielsen said. ART BY ANGELA ZIRBES DESIGN BY MEGAN BOLAND


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E N T E R TA I N M E N T APRIL 6, 2018

IN MY OPINION ... Do you have an opinion about something? The parking lot speed bumps, that one AP class you’re in or even a topping on pizza? You’re not alone. Read some students’ views on topics and see where you fall. These opinions were submitted* through a Google form sent out on the WSS social media accounts. COMPILED BY LUKE REYNOLDS

AP Calculus BC is killing my soul

The idea that some people are major snakes is bogus as heck because literally every single person is a snake, just saying

People at West should be more open to wear whatever the heck they want

Avocados & senioritis are overrated

Prom needs to be scheduled to a different date...how can you party just days before AP testing?

I think teachers aren’t appreciated enough we should take teacher appreciation week seriously like we did in elementary school #bringbacktheflowers


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E N T E R TA I N M E N T APRIL 6, 2018

Pineapple on pizza gets a bad rep—try it before you knock it XOXO

Actually, pineapple on pizza is disgusting

West drivers speed through the speed bumps like there’s no tomorrow, people need to TAKE IT SLOW Being a girl seems way more fun

West should have a winter formal. City has one, Liberty has one, why are we missing out?

*Submissions may have been edited for clarity. DESIGN BY LYDIA GUO

The gun discussion needs to happen in EVERY class, there needs to be a forum where students/teachers can become proactive


3 6 A DV E R T I S E M E N T S APRIL 6, 2018


37

A DV E R T I S E M E N T S

APRIL 6, 2018

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38

SPORTS

APRIL 6, 2018

THE CLUB ADVANTAGE

BY ELLIE GRETTER & DENIZ INCE

Over the years, West’s girls and boys soccer teams have brought home a combined total of 11 state titles. One possible reason for the teams’ success is the abundance of club soccer teams in the Iowa City area. But does this give an advantage to club players?


A

player rolls up for the first day of soccer tryouts. They haven’t played soccer in months, much less worked out. Despite hopes of improving their fitness and fulfilling their potential of playing on the varsity team, they find that their lack of prior preparation has hindered their opportunity to start the season off on the right foot. “Spring break is more to get kids ready for tryouts who haven’t been playing at all because you can be out of shape or haven’t touched the ball for a while,” said Harry Zielinski ’18, an Iowa Soccer Club and West High varsity soccer player. “That’s one of the good things about club: the facilities we’re able to play in in the winter. If you don’t play club you can’t consistently practice over the winter.” A majority of the West High varsity players are members of club teams. Although having additional practice time in the off-season may be an advantage, girls soccer coach Dave Rosenthal only takes into consideration the athlete that he sees during tryouts, which take place the first couple days of the season. “With the exception of your captains for varsity, [who] are returning players who we know are going to make varsity, everybody’s [spots] are up for grabs. You can’t make the assumption that you’re on varsity until you’ve made that

“J U ST

B ECAU S E

YO U

together that are really solid,” Zielinski said. Zielinski believes that this makes it harder for students here or at City High to earn a spot on the varsity team, whereas it may be easier in Cedar Rapids. Dave Rosenthal, head girls soccer coach at West for 23 seasons, has coached for the past three years with the Iowa Soccer Club and 17 years before that with the Alliance Soccer Club. “I know most of the players through [the Iowa Soccer Club] but I will take the best players, the best athletes. Just because you play club soccer doesn’t mean you make the varsity team. On the other hand, just because you don’t play club soccer doesn’t mean you can’t make the varsity team,” Rosenthal said. Since he coaches with a club during the offseason, Rosenthal must follow various rules when considering which team to coach. For example, he is not allowed to coach any students in ninth through 12th grade who may play for West; however, he may officiate any other matches without breaking the rules of the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union. Although his high school athletes do not play for him outside of the season, he does see the advantage of playing club soccer. “[It’s an advantage] for a lot of reasons. Number one, you’ve made soccer a focal point and

PL AY

CLU B

SOCCE R

DO ES N ’T M E A N YO U M A K E TH E VA RS IT Y TE A M . O N TH E OTH E R H A N D, J U ST B ECAU S E YO U DO N ’T PL AY CLU B SOCCE R DO ES N ’T M E A N YO U CA N ’T M A K E TH E VA RS IT Y TE A M .” -DAVE ROSENTHAL, GIRLS SOCCER COACH happen. You have to earn it,” Rosenthal said. you’re spending more time on that,” RosenThe rigorous tryout process can be made thal said. “Plus, they get very good club more comfortable for some athletes via yearcoaching. There are a lot of people who can round exposure to soccer through club. Zielcoach the game, [but] you’re talking about inski explains the almost never-ending rotation some of the best coaches in the state that between high school and club soccer seasons. work in some of the best clubs in the state.” “After we won state [in 2017], there was Holly Paulsen ’18 believes that playabout two weeks time before we started trying club soccer prior to high school is outs for club, which isn’t a lot of time. So also helpful to calm some anxieties that the summer to [fall] season for club is refreshmen have when joining a new team. ally intense and it’s really important,” Zie“Since we already knew each other, we allinski said. “The winter season for club is ready had good chemistry on the field,” not that important so right now [we’re] getPaulsen said. “It made it a lot easier going in ting ready for [the] high school season.” as freshmen; it made it a lot less intimidating.” With this player expertise, it’s no surprise the Zielinski agrees, but he also added that West High soccer teams are some of the best in receiving coaching or having connecthe state. Many of the area club players are then tion with a high school coach before startsplit up between the area high schools, making high school may also boost a playing varsity teams competitive; however, this er’s chances of making the varsity team. is not always the case in other parts of Iowa. “I do think [the coach] having seen you “One of the things that makes West High when you [were] younger helps maybe get such a good soccer team is [that] we have two on the team because he knows to look out serious high schools here in 3A, but Cedar for you,” Zielinski said. “But I think once tryRapids has [approximately] four, so their club outs come, it doesn’t matter what club you kids get split up among four high schools. It’s were a part of. If you’re playing better than harder for them to put a roster of 20 people a club kid, he’ll take you over a club kid.”

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9-12 COACHING CONTACT INTERPRETATION During the school year outside the sport season, coaching contact is illegal. However, a coach may supervise a workout or open facility with approval of the local school administration. This is for supervision purposes only and no coaching can occur. Source: Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union

BY THE NUMBERS For a year, 9U-19U ISC costs

$1,165 Fees covered for maximum amount of financial assistance

$660 $330 $1,290

ISC coaching/admin fee per year ISC facility fee per year

total

Estimated total minimum expenses

$540+/$595+ Source: Iowa Soccer Club

PHOTO BY KARA WAGENKNECHT DESIGN BY SELINA HUA


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SPORTS

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PICTURE PERFECT

PRACTICE 2 1

3 4

6

5 7

8

9 10


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After championship seasons last year, the West soccer and tennis teams look to repeat their success. The boys soccer and tennis teams are the returning state champions, with the latter having swept the singles, douples and team victories.

12

11

CAPTIONS 1. Grace Curran ’21 passes the ball

during a drill.

2. Girls coach Ben Liesveld demon-

16 15 13

14

17

18

strates to Lia Weiner ’18 a different approach to kicking the ball. 3. Grace Curran ’21 kicks the ball during the girls soccer practice. 4. Laura Machlab ’18 and Marnie Vonderhaar ’19 lunge during a drill station. 5. Vladimir Tivanski ’21 dribbles the soccer ball down the court during the boys skills practice. 6. Niyati Vyas ’21 kicks the ball back to another player during a drill. 7. Lizzie Raley ’18 passes the ball to a fellow teammate. 8. Owen Smith ’21 kicks the ball down the gym during skills practice. 9. Head boys coach Brad Stiles instructs the soccer players about the drills set up during practice. 10. Pauline Kihura ’20 gets the ball around Makayla Slade ’21. 11. Mukundan Kasturirangan ’21 watches the ball after he served it. 12. Audrey Koch ’21 serves the ball during practice. 13. Sasha Chackalackal ’19 hits the ball to the other side of the net. 14. Emma Koch ’19 hits the ball back to Kaily Speer ’19 during practice. 15. Doroteo Ortiz Cruz ’21 hits the ball back to Brad Dileo ’18. 16. Vivian Mitchell ’19 waits for the opponent to serve the ball. Jessica 17. Moonjely ’20 hits the ball during practice. 18. Audrey Koch ’21 gets ready for the opponent to serve the ball.

PHOTOS BY PAREEN MHATRE & KARA WAGENKNECHT DESIGN BY SELINA HUA


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SPORTS

APRIL 6, 2018

DOUBLE TEAMED BY WILL CONRAD

Coming off a state basketball championship, Emma Koch ‘19 and Audrey Koch ‘21 discuss their athletic experiences on and off the playing field in tennis and basketball.

W

hat’s better than upsetting a crosstown rival to win a state title? Doing it with your sister. Emma Koch ’19 and Audrey Koch ’21 have been playing sports together for their whole lives, but this year they have finally gotten the chance to bring their dynamic duo to West High basketball and tennis. Starting from childhood, the Kochs’ athletic careers were always well-supported by their family. Their parents both played basketball in high school, with their father going on to play for the University of Iowa. As for tennis, the Kochs chose this sport of their own accord out of the many sports they tried as kids. When it came to helping out with logistics for both, though, their mother and father were always ready to lend assistance. “[Our parents] have always been super supportive with driving us around and getting us involved. And they’ll even rebound for us and hit with us for basketball and tennis,” Emma said. In addition to their immediate family, their

extended family is able to attend games because the Kochs participate in the same athletic events. Moreover, the personalized coaching staff at West has made it easier for both the Kochs to assimilate into high school basketball, which can often be more competitive and demanding than its junior high counterpart. “Coach Mayer is really [helpful]. As soon as you’re in seventh grade he makes sure that he knows you and [that he] builds a relationship with you,” Emma said. The close-knit nature of the team itself has proved to be an important factor, as well. “West is really close. That’s what makes it different from a lot of other schools. We’re all best friends,” Emma said. While training has no doubt made the pair closer, playing on the same team has brought an entirely new component to their relationship. “We spend a lot more time together. In junior high when we weren’t playing together


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we honestly never saw each other, except for at eight at night. It’s nice that we actually do see each other now, and we have a lot to talk about. It’s good, but it’s kind of weird, honestly, because you don’t get away from it as much. But if you want to talk there’s always someone there. We can just go into each other’s rooms and talk about strategy,” Emma said. Furthermore, the unique experience of playing with a sibling can help to motivate in a particularly effective way. “We will have practices where we’ll come out yelling at each other about some stupid thing like not getting through a screen, or we’ll think we’re pushing each other when we’re playing. It’s a very competitive household. Even

bles] with my sister because that rarely happens and we have a very special opportunity to make it come true. We know what it feels like now to win state and that makes us want to get back there really bad,” Emma said. Although Audrey is new to the high school playing environment, she also looks forward to striving for this goal with her sister. “With tennis it’s more fun to have someone on the court with you because tennis is a very isolated sport. It’s cool to have someone that you’re close with and have been living with,” Audrey said. In addition, the unique skill set they bring from basketball promises to make tennis matches an interesting challenge. Most tennis players fall far short of the Kochs’

BASKETBALL BY TH E

N U M B E RS AUDREY KOCH ’21

4.8 47.8% 42.9%

points per game of field goals made of threepointers made

EMMA KOCH ’19

9.7 44.0% 6.4

points per game

“ IT WOU LD B E SO AMAZ I N G TO WI N [STATE DOU B LES] WITH MY S I STE R B ECAU SE THAT R AR E LY HAPPE N S AN D WE HAVE A VE RY SPECIAL O PPO RTU N ITY TO MAK E IT CO M E TRU E .” - EMMA KOCH ’19

board games can be dangerous,” Emma said. Both participating in and winning a state title game was an exciting experience for both sisters. The Kochs’ cooperative training allows for them to see every step that they took towards improvement. “I wouldn’t want to win state with any other team because of my sister and also the seniors this year. We both see how hard we work so it’s cool to see that pay off for us,” Emma said. Emma and Audrey plan to continue building both their athletic excellence and relationship in tennis, as well. Last season, Emma won state doubles with Abby Jans ’17, but this year plays doubles with Audrey. “It would be so amazing to win [state dou-

PHOTOS BY KARA WAGENKNECHT DESIGN BY JENNA ZENG

height, as both are approaching six-foot. “It’ll be pretty intimidating for other teams, and it’ll be fun because you can get pumped in doubles more than singles,” Emma said. Regardless of where the two end up, both plan to continue playing both sports throughout their lives and look forward to what the future entails. “Both sports can teach lessons,” Audrey said. “With basketball, it’s really important to learn how to work with a team. Tennis is learning how to pick myself up and deal with difficult people.” Emma and Audrey both have ambitions of playing college basketball, as well as playing tennis as a lifelong sport. While life can often separate siblings, athletics will continue to be the factor that unites these two sisters.

of field goals made

rebounds per game


44

OPINION APRIL 6, 2018

EDITORIAL: SAFETY AFTER PARKLAND

NOT ENOUGH

The district is not currently doing enough to protect students from a school shooter because of school board hesitancy to provide a school resource officer and Violent Incident Survival Training, also known as VIST. School resource officers are an important component to in-school safety because they can potentially discourage school shootings and prevent a greater loss of life. At Maryland’s Great Mill High School, resource officer Brian Gaskill “rushed to the scene as soon as the gunfire began ... and the entire incident took under a minute [with two students shot],” according to CNN. For students who may feel scared or threatened by an armed officer on campus, the police department conducts a campus interview process that allows students and parents to become familiar with the school resource officer. Although ICCSD Superintendent Steve Murley sent an email to families in February inviting them to participate in mock intruder drills at Iowa City schools this April, these drills will be voluntary and more informational than re-

ENOUGH

The district is doing enough to protect students’ safety already, and more extensive security measures like VIST training, metal detectors, and school resource officers will be too costly, overstep the administration’s boundaries and trod on students’ rights. While several community members are criticizing the administration for not providing VIST, Murley said the district is trying to keep the best interest of all students in mind. “We have kids who have come to us from war torn countries,” Murley said. “Some of their parents are worried that [VIST] will be a trigger, so we want to be sensitive to that. That’s a tough balancing act, making sure students feel safe and secure but also focusing on creating a conducive teaching and learning environment.” Next year, West will join City and Liberty by limiting points of entry into the school, making West a closed campus. In addition, West will install cameras and a fob door system, which will require students to use their IDs to enter the building and assist in monitoring school visitors. According to Murley, there is discussion of reorienting the main offices so secretaries and administrators can see visitors approaching the

In the wake of the fatal mass shooting in Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school last month, schools across the county have been reviewing security and discussing whether they need new measures to prevent a potential shooting.

active. Students have raised concerns that they aren’t given the opportunity to participate in the VIST school shooter drill that teachers do once every other year. Unlike instructional measures like videos and discussions, VIST brings in the police force to act as a school shooter. Teachers are told the time of day and to go to the location they’d normally be at that time. The police force then simulates school shooting scenarios. Teachers have said that they feel more prepared to react to a potential threat, and that they have ideas on how to improve communication and make better decisions. According to Murley, the administration believes the best way to prevent a school shooting is for teachers to know their students. While people struggling with mental health issues are more likely to be victims rather than perpetrators of violence, potential behavior patterns like expulsion and serious disciplinary problems are indicators of someone who may need mental health intervention and support, according to the National School Safety Center. West High’s

main hotline number to report bullying and unsafe or uncomfortable incidents is supposed to alert the administration immediately. However, several students have said the number doesn’t always work. Dr. Sarah Bruch, director of Social and Education Policy at the University of Iowa, said last year that a multi-stakeholder task force recommended a restorative justice initiative pilot to build stronger relationships between the community and school by taking a less punitive approach to discipline and behavior problems. Taking note of Bruch’s recommendation, West High teachers, administrators and students were involved in an implicit bias instruction with Harvard Professor Dr. Lee Teitel over the past few months. While recognizing implicit bias in the classroom is an important step towards making teacher interactions equal for all students, West High administrators need to consider more expansive social and emotional curricula, robust mental health services and networks of intervention.

building. To ensure that visitors and latecomers are properly identified for being given access, Murley also said the administration is considering adding a vestibule system to schools, where visitors are buzzed in but then have to enter the

shooter. While community members are demanding further action, metal detectors and student resource officers are unnecessary and would cause a diversion of funds within the current budget. Additionally, Dr. Shoultz said that to his knowledge, only two incidents involved a gun at school since 2000. Both incidents were dealt with immediately, with no sustained injuries. Because metal detectors are programmed to identify anything metallic, West High would need a large staff stationed at the three points of entry to pat down students and sort through bags that set the detector off. This process is time-consuming and the administration would need to evaluate how they could screen thousands of students every day and still start school on time. It is therefore reasonable to assume the administration would enact stricter dress codes to speed up the process. Because dress codes can infringe on student rights and because some may regard metal detectors as a violation of their Fourth Amendment Right regarding unreasonable search and seizure, the ICCSD community may have to consider in future years what liberties they’re willing to sacrifice for safety.

IS THE DISTRCIT DOING ENOUGH TO PROTECT STUDENTS FROM A SCHOOL SHOOTING?

12 10 THE WSS EDITORIAL BOARD VOTED THAT THEY ARE DOING ENOUGH. office to sign in. With these plans and wiring laid out to ensure West High’s infrastructure is ready for a secure system, the district has taken proactive measures to prevent entry from an outside

Editorial Policy: https://wsspaper.com/policy/ DESIGN BY TYLER THOMASSON


THE ERA OF EMPTY ACCEPTANCE

45

OPINION

APRIL 6, 2018

WSS reporter Lucy Polyak ‘19 recounts her experience coping with mental illness in an era of empty acceptance. BY LUCY POLYAK

I

’ve been seeing a therapist since August of 2017. When I mention this fact to people, I usually see their eyes widen for a second before they catch themselves and try to act like they don’t have a million questions. Are you alright? What happened to you? Are you dealing with some sort of giant burden from years and years of childhood trauma? The truth of the matter is, I’m no different from the next teenager. I try hard in school, I go out on the weekends with my friends and I check Twitter whenever I possibly can. I just also happen to take 15 milligrams of an antidepressant every evening and meet with my cool therapist/friend for an hour every other week. The only major difference is that sometimes my brain needs a little more help to stay in a healthy place. I started to realize my brain worked in an abnormal way around eighth grade. More and more often, I would find myself getting anxious about things that didn’t seem to matter to other people. This would send me to a dark, lonely place where I’d have to live until potentially days later when I would start feeling fine again. I knew I didn’t have to be living like this, but I was terrified to speak up about the issues I’d been dealing with. I had seen all of the typical guidance programming in school and the media I saw told me it was okay to seek help when you needed it, but I just didn’t feel like that was the world I was living in. I

noted that this “era of acceptance” we’d been told we were living in contained far too many empty promises. Despite there being plenty of effective, accessible treatments, there are often huge gaps of time between the first appearance of mental illness symptoms and when people actually get help. A study by the National Alliance on Mental Illness showed that approximately half of all chronic mental illness begins by the time a person turns 14, and that number rises to ¾ by age 24. This means that although many young people may struggle with mental health issues during their young adulthood, far too many of those people go untreated. The stigma around the topic of mental health is still alive and well. According to a Duke University study, more than half of teenagers with psychiatric disorders receive no sort of treatment at all. These teens are so afraid of judgement from the world around them or worse, that no one would take their concerns seriously, that they’d rather just suffer in silence. So how do we fix this major problem? We talk about mental illness. It’s that simple. But Lucy, don’t we already do that? While we’ve started discussing the issue of mental

illness, whether it be in schools or online, we’ve hardly scratched the surface. Our society needs to start taking the time to educate its youth on the different forms that mental illness can take; we need to talk about what types of resources people of all ages can access when they need honest conversations about the realities of mental illness.

“ TH ESE TE E N S AR E SO AF R AI D O F J U DG E M E NT F RO M TH E WO R LD AROU N D TH E M O R WO RSE , THAT N O O N E WOU LD TAK E TH E I R CO N CE R N S SE R I OU SLY, THAT TH EY ’ D R ATH E R J U ST SU F F E R I N S I LE N CE .” Since my diagnosis with general depression and anxiety, I’ve started to try to talk about my own experiences as frequently as I’m comfortable with. I try to casually mention my therapist in conversation or tweet out a joke about something strange my brain is doing that day. Normalizing the idea of mental illness helps young people understand they aren’t broken just because a part of their brain may work in a different way than someone else’s. West High in particular has many resources available to struggling students that are within the reach of many families, such as access to therapists and psychiatrists and various clubs that discuss difficult topics such as mental illness. Destigmatizing mental illness is so important for the further progression of society. No one should have to go about their life feeling like there’s no hope. PHOTOS BY ANJALI HUYNH DESIGN BY FRANCES DAI


46

OPINION APRIL 6, 2018

ZACH WAHLS GUEST COLUMN

Zach Wahls is a former WSS columns editor. When he was 19, he gave a speech to the Iowa House Judiciary Committee about his experience growing up with same-sex parents, which went on to become YouTube’s most-watched political video of the year. As an Eagle Scout, Wahls continued advocating for families like his, launching Scouts for Equality to work against the Boy Scouts’ policy banning LGBTQ members. Wahls is currently running for Iowa Senate District 37.

O

ver the last two weeks, I have been simultaneously inspired and heartbroken by the response of the teen survivors of the Parkland shooting. When 16-year old Emma Gonzalez cried “We call B.S!” in a Florida rally aimed at strengthening gun control laws, I felt her power—the outspoken students have inspired junior high and high school students in my own community right here in Iowa, with over 250 students walking out of class in protest. At the same time, nobody, especially kids, should have to spend their time for grieving and recovery thinking about politics. As someone who organized as a young person around a controversial issue, I recognize some similarities between the Parkland survivors and my own work, even though there are also vast differences. But there are unique challenges for young activists, and I want to share what I have learned. Along the way, we were told over and over and over that we would never succeed. Yet in less than five years, we won a near-total victory— the Boy Scouts ended their ban on gay youth in 2013, their ban on gay adults in 2015, and their ban on trans participants in 2017. Anything is possible. Because of the leadership from the Parkland survivors, junior high and high school students all over this nation have a newfound platform of their own. Young activists should not be afraid to use the power they have. Speak up, and the adults and media in your community will listen. When Scouts for Equality launched, we knew that this would be a multi-year campaign. And barely six weeks after we started the group, the Boy Scouts came out and doubled-down on their ban. It was a gut punch, threatening to derail us before we even had the chance to really get off the ground. But we were not going to give up. The key to staying disciplined is to focus on what you can control. Keep clear goals in mind and keep your eye on what you want, not on the obstacles. If you let go of the aspects of the debate that you can’t control, you may find that you have more power than you think. An important step is to think critically about why the status quo is the way it is and figuring

out who has the power to change it. We took note that the Boy Scouts’ most important asset was their brand, which gave them access to corporate donors even though those donors had rules against giving to organizations that discriminated. That was a tension we used to our advantage. For gun safety, the people with the power to change our laws are politicians who can vote to reform gun safety laws and keep us safe. Politicians respond to one thing more than anything else: re-election. If you want to change their minds, change their re-election odds. Passion is incredibly important, but the National Rifle Association isn’t successful only because of passion. The group is incredibly organized, they represent a highly concentrated interest (i.e. gun owners and manufacturers) and they can mobilize political activists. The money they give to political candidates matters,

“ LEARN

F ROM

THOSE

WHO

CAM E B E FORE YOU, J OI N WITH YOU R F RI E N DS AN D ALLI ES AN D ROLL U P YOU R SLE EVES. TH EY ’ LL TE LL YOU IT ’S I M POSSI B LE U NTI L TH E DAY YOU WI N .” but it is only one part of their recipe for success. Above all, the National Rifle Association is able to create political consequences, partly by running attack ads that fire up its members to come out to the polls. Simply put: passion and organization are the key ingredients to change. Another lesson: it’s okay—in fact, it’s crucial— to ask for help. We worked with Jeremy Bird, the national field director for Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign, to put the needed local pressure on the Boy Scouts city by city and council by council. Jeremy taught me the importance of organizing with heart and sharing personal stories. As activists, your stories and your experiences will affect people. Take some time to write out your thoughts. Have a 90 second pitch about why you

care about gun safety. What is your story? You don’t have to have survived an attack to have a story about how gun violence affects you and your community. Talk about why you care about this issue, share stories about why your classmates care about this issue, talk about why this matters now. When you have meetings, make decisions about what you are doing next. Making decisions is making progress. Take careful notes. Never finish a meeting without scheduling the next one. When you’re getting stuff done, break it down into individual actions. When you finish one action, your question should be, “What is my next action?” This next recommendation is for young men in particular: be careful about talking over women in meetings. You probably do it reflexively and without thinking about it. I certainly did until I was called out on it by a dear friend and colleague. I’m still not perfect at it today. Be aware of it! Effective communication is a huge part of getting stuff done. Talking on the phone tends to be much more effective than texting or emailing, especially if the matter is time-sensitive. If your team gets large enough, set up a Slack channel or other communication and team-management service. Momentum is everything. Keep moving forward. Some of the things you will want to do will probably cost some money. Pick one person to handle the money you raise and spend. Ask people to pitch in. Do not do bake sales to raise money. Ask people to give directly. Remember that if you don’t ask them to give, they probably won’t; you are doing them a favor by giving them a chance to make a difference in supporting your work. There are incredible organizers and leaders in the trenches doing this work every day and they need your help. Our team at Scouts for Equality knew we had a chance of succeeding where others had failed, and we knew that their work made our success possible. Learn from those who came before you, join with your friends and allies and roll up your sleeves. They’ll tell you it’s impossible until the day you win.


47

OPINION

APRIL 6, 2018

T H E S HAR KS IN OU R SO C IE T Y Puerto Ricans have been the victim of vicious stereotypes in the play “West Side Story.” We recognize the faults in the musical and dissolve any false ideas it brings us. BY BERNARDO PEREZ, WSS INTERN

A

t first glance, “West Side Story” is a fun, upbeat musical that adds a modern twist on the classic “Romeo and Juliet.” It comes ripe with good humor, fun action and a sweet romance. However, all this comes at the expense of a group of people largely prevalent throughout the show: Puerto Ricans. The show has many misconceptions of what Puerto Ricans are like. From my experience, none of the stereotypes shown in the musical hold any merit. The maternal side of my family has lived in Puerto Rico for generations and one of the most important values passed down from each generation has been abstension from violence. Violence has been frowned upon by every single one of my family members and this is the way I have come to see Puerto Ricans. The musical tends to paint them in a different color though. “West Side Story” was originally intended to be about the rivalry between Jews and Catholics. However, because of the high levels of gang violence and immigration at the time, the writer later adapted it to be about Puerto Ricans and Poles to make it more relatable. The script was written by Arthur Laurents, who grew up in New York City. His experience with Puerto Ricans was largely based off the rising rates of Puerto Rican immigrants at the time. Aside from that and the Puerto Ricans he had seen in

New York City, he did not have much experience with the culture. Since he wrote the story through his personal point of view, many misconceptions about Puerto Rican culture are scattered throughout the musical. The show portrays Puerto Ricans as gang members called “The Sharks,” placing emphasis on their viciousness and tendency toward violence. Puerto Rican men are also shown to feel superior to women in the show. In the script, the leader of the Sharks, Bernardo, states, “Back

“ PEO PLE S H O U LD LE A R N M O R E A BO UT PU E RTO R I C A N H I STO RY A N D R E F LECT O N M ATTE RS O F R ACI A L STE R EOT Y PE S.” home, women know their place.” These statements perpetuate the poor cultural understandings people have about Puerto Ricans. People can argue that Puerto Ricans are not the only ethnic group shown as gang members in the musical but that Poles are as well. It does, in fact, have both groups commit negative actions throughout the musical. However, Hispanics have been and continue to be the target of rac-

ism, not whites. In addition, people are very unlikely to get any other exposure to Puerto Ricans in popular culture due to Pureto Ricans’ lack of representation in other productions and forms of entertainment. Seldom are they remembered to be in anything else and, because of “West Side Story”’s popularity, this is how people tend to remember them. Now, this show is coming to West High School. Theatre West has done a good job of adapting the script to be more educational and less offensive. They have opted out lines they felt were unnecessary or only offensive. Any elements left in are only for critical parts of the plot and one of the ideas they want to emphasize is the impact of racism on American culture. Because of this, I have hope that Theatre West will be able to adjust this musical for the better. People can still learn from this production by using this show as a starting point to educate themselves. This musical was written in 1961, a time when the country was still struggling with civil rights. Due to this, we should be aware of the idea of expanding our viewpoints when it comes to other cultures. I urge people to use this opportunity to compare and contrast actual Puerto Rican culture to that which is displayed in the show. If we continue to characterize cultures for what they are not, we may very well be the actual sharks in our society. DESIGN BY THOMAS DUONG PHOTO BY ALYSON KUENNEN


48

OPINION APRIL 6, 2018

PP Y P L

A O R E

BY MELANIE BRECHTEL & OCTAVIOUS SULLIVAN

R K U R I V I G E

This column is in response to the online West Side Story column, which has since been removed, “Ticket my car one more time, I dare you.” We would like to address some of the common complaints we hear as the parking staff and remind all students that we’re people too.

Melanie Brechtel and Octavious Sullivan are supervisory paraeducators in their first year working at West High. Melanie is a West graduate with a masters in school counseling. Octavious is a recent City High graduate who just came to West after working at Walt Disney World Resorts.


49

OPINION

APRIL 6, 2018

Dear Student(s),

P

lease park your privilege. We understand that some of you are upset because you parked illegally and got a ticket. However, it’s a pretty simple system with pretty simple rules. Park in designated student parking and have your car properly registered. We’ve been trying to figure out why this is so incredibly difficult for some people to wrap their brains around and the only thing we can surmise is entitlement. Parking is a privilege here at West High, not a right. Many students don’t have cars and rely on parents, friends or the bus to get to school. Not everyone is fortunate enough to have a car, so please park your privilege. If the distance from your car to the school is too much for you to walk, we’d be glad to revoke your parking rights. We are not overcrowded; in fact, we have 500 students less this year than last year. There is no “ I F TH E D I STA N C E F RO M YO U R C A R TO TH E SC H OO L I S TOO M U C H FO R YO U TO WA LK , W E ’ D B E G L A D TO R E VO K E YO U R PA R K I N G R I G HTS .” reason to park in the fire lane, bus lane, designated no parking lane or staff lot. Parking in the fire lane is a safety hazard and a nuisance when the buses can’t get through. We have to go out

there, identify the car and then track down the driver. Save us all some time and park where you should. For further clarification on parking laws, visit www.icgov.org. I have heard multiple students complain that they deserve to park in the staff lot. Here’s the thing: graduate high school, earn a degree, get a job here and you can park in the staff lot. Also, “ W E A R E S I M PLY DO I N G O U R J O BS; PLE AS E DO YO U RS A N D M A K E A LL O U R LI V E S E AS I E R ." construction is not taking away parking spots; we have plenty. There are as many spots as you have excuses to not park in them. If students would self-regulate and do the right thing then we wouldn’t have to give out tickets. It’s not our first choice on how to spend our time, but someone has to do it. Your actions have consequences and parking illegally equals a ticket; it’s simple math. The real world does not let you park illegally without consequence, you will get towed. You will learn real quick that downtown Iowa City does not play around with parking. It usually only takes one time and you don’t do it again. Paying a $5 parking ticket at West High is pretty lenient compared to the real world and to even some other high schools. We don’t get any sort of commission from writing parking tickets. We are simply doing our jobs; please do yours and make all our lives easier. It would be nice to go to work and not get

cussed out, flipped off or disrespected because you asked someone to follow the rules. If you’ve ever had a job, you know it stinks when people get mad at you when you are simply trying to do your job. If you have an issue with tickets, go to someone who can change the parking policy, because that’s beyond our job description. If you have suggestions on how to make parking better, we’d love to hear your thoughts. It’s not going to get better overnight, but we are willing to listen. However, in the meantime, please park in designated student parking. I (Melanie) graduated from West High and somehow managed to park where I was supposed to everyday. Yes, I had to walk from the back of the lot some days, but doing the right thing when no one is looking is called integrity. That’s something we strive for here at West High and want to pass on to our students. But then again, what do we know? -Parking Staff “ DO I N G TH E R I G HT TH I N G W H E N N O O N E I S LOO K I N G I S C A LLE D I NTE G R IT Y. TH AT ’ S SO M ETH I N G W E STR I V E FO R H E R E AT W E ST H I G H A N D WA NT TO PASS O N TO O U R STU D E NTS .”

PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY OLIVIA DACHTLER

DESIGN BY WINGEL XUE


50

S TA F F L I S T

APRIL 6, 2018

WEST SIDE STORY STAFF Ivan Badovinac Megan Boland Sean Brown Anna Brown Emma Brustkern* Abbie Callahan Grace Christopher Carmela Cohen Suarez Will Conrad Olivia Dachtler Frances Dai Jessica Doyle Thomas Duong Natalie Dunlap Nina Elkadi* Eman Elsheikh Ting Gao Ethan Goers* Ellie Gretter* Lydia Guo Reagan Hart Selina Hua Anjali Huynh Deniz Ince* Catherine Ju* Fatima Kammona Lauren Katz* Natalie Katz Teya Kerns Crystal Kim Alyson Kuennen*

Photographer and Videographer Designer Photographer Reporter Print Entertainment Editor Reporter Videographer Reporter Reporter Photographer Designer Reporter Designer Reporter Print Editor-in-Chief and Anchor Videographer Reporter Sports Producer Sports Editor Designer and Ad Designer Distribution Manager and Reporter Designer Reporter Assistant Sports Editor Design Editor Reporter Print Copy Editor and Editorials Editor Reporter Photographer Designer News Editor and Photographer

Junhee Lee* George Liu Pareen Mhatre* Jessica Moonjely Lucy Polyak Ian Prescott Nick Pryor* Prateek Raikwar* Luke Reynolds* Kristina Rosebrook* Allie Schmitt-Morris* Fenna Semken* Maddi Shinall Caecillia Shoppa Sophie Stephens* Shawn Thacker* Samalya Thenuwara* Tyler Thomasson Mary Vander Weg Kara Wagenknecht Jenna Wang Mason Wang* Harry Westergaard Ken Wilbur Wingel Xue* Hae-Joo Yoon Jenna Zeng Angela Zirbes* Sara Whittaker

Business Manager and Print Copy Editor Reporter Photo Editor and Online Managing Editor Reporter Reporter Distribution Manager and WesTV Livestream Sports Correspondent and Reporter Anchor, Feature and News Producer Profiles Editor Anchor, Online Copy Editor and Reporter Online Entertainment Editor Social Media Editor Online Editor-in Chief Photographer Reporter Online Feature Editor Print Feature Editor and Print Managing Editor Broadcast Editor-in-Chief Designer Reporter Photographer Reporter Video Copy Editor Film Critic and Reporter Reporter Designer and Columns Editor Videographer Designer Art Editor Adviser *editorial board member

EQUITY STATEMENT

EDITORIAL POLICY

It is the policy of the Iowa City Community School District not to discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, martial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status, disability, or socioeconomic programs, activites, or employment practices. If you believe you have (or your child has) been discriminated against or treated unjustly at your school, please contact the Equity Director, Kingsley Botchway, at 509 Dubuque Street, 319-688-1000. Please contact westsidestorypaper@ gmail.com for questions or comments.

West Side Story reflects the views of the staff and does not represent the school administration, faculty or student body. Guest articles may be accepted to represent an additional point of view or as a part of a collection of reader contributions. The staff will carefully scrutinize all reader submissions. All ads are subject to approval by the business staff. Those that are libelous, obscene or plainly offensive may be rejected. West Side Story attempts to publish all letters, which must be signed, to the Editors, but may reject submissions due to space limitations, inaccuracy or poor quality. It is the responsibility of the opinion editor to verify authorship. Editors can make minor edits for the sake of clarity, length and grammatical correctness. For our full editorial policy visit: wsspaper.com/policy.


P H OTO F E AT U R E C O N T E ST C O N T I N U E D

DESIGN BY CATHERINE JU

CATHERINE COLLINS ‘18 A foggy morning near Peyto Lake in Banff National Park, Canada.


WORDS WORDS OF OF WEST WEST DOWN

ACROSS 1. “Please close your ______ .” 2. Your teacher just played guitar for you. Who is it? 3. This teacher has more dogs than children. Who is it? 4. It is above 50 degrees outside. Where do you eat lunch? 5. Your teacher has the same name as your favorite brand of grape jelly. Who is it? 6. Some say “Triple G.” Others say “Where is Jerry?” 7. There are two of them.

1. “You’ll find the assignment in the module in ______ .” Hint: also used in art class. 8. You’re having a “party” in class. Whose class are you in? 9. You just got “smoosh pooshed” by an air cannon. Whose classroom are you in? 10. There aren’t any spots in the lots at school. Which religious institution do you park at? 11. You just got yelled at for eating food. Where are you? 12. Twenty-three minutes of less-productive study hall. 13. You’re being threatened with a toenail. Whose classroom are you in? Hint: this teacher has a fitting name. 14. “The ___ doesn’t dismiss you; I do!”

9.

8.

1.

2. 12.

3.

11. 10.

4.

5.

6.

13.

14.

ANSWERS

7.

BY NINA ELKADI DESIGN BY FRANCES DAI

1. CANVAS 8. KIRPES 9. HARDING 10. CHURCH 11. LIBRARY 12. AFT 13. GROSS 14. BELL

1. CHROMEBOOK 2. IANNONE 3. NEUZIL 4. COURTYARD 5. WELCH 6. GREGG 7. MEDDS

DOWN

ACROSS


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