Page 1

Commentaty Changes to the Schedule Page 2

Atlas vs. the Mazeika: Your punch line wins a prize! Page 2

Arts Kooks’ Album is “Junk” Page 4

Features New Student Demographics Page 6

Sports V. Field Hockey Profiled Page 7

Wilbraham & Monson Academy



Volume IV, Issue 1

The Global School ®

October 6, 2011

Wilbraham, MA 01095

WMA Remembers 9/11 with 3K Candles

By STEPHANIE REEVES ‘12 Staff Writer

thousand candles (the number of people who died). The ceremony itself was Where were you on Sepbrief, but the preparation took altember 11, 2001? Were you in elmost two hours: people spent their ementary school, just getting your evenings setting up candles around snack out of your lunch box? Were the field so that others could light you in Boston at a conference for them once the sun went down. work? Were you across the world? As the sun set, a multitude In Korea? Germany? Italy? Or of people arrived at WMA: not were you right there in New York, only students from WMA, but also in your apartment building, watch- members of the surrounding Wiling the scene unfold before your braham community. Soon a hush eyes? Were you afraid? Did you fell over the area; the entire space understand what it meant? Could was illuminated with a warm glow. you guess what would happen In the middle of it all was a peace next? Could any of us? sign with “9/11” on it. The attacks on 9/11 marked People milled about, lightone of the most tragic incidents ing candles and speaking in quiet of the 21st century. Around the tones. 8’o’clock drew nearer and world, people felt the after-effects: Ms. Norman called everyone to families were broken, New York stand by the flag, which was flown City was literally and figuratively respectfully at half-mast. scarred, and the USA soon declared Speaking only a few words, war. The rest is history. she told us about Ryan Murphy, an To commemorate such alum of the class of ’84, who died an awful event nearly a decade in the midst of the attacks. His later, the entire WMA community stone remains near Smith Hall; it’s gathered by the flag to light threea little mossy, but all things consid-

ered, lies unharmed. A few moments later, Mosaic Harmony performed a few verses of “Amazing Grace.” The crowd attempted to sing along and continued humming when they didn’t know the words. People swayed to the music; there might have even been a few teardrops. The voices coalesced with one final note and then ended as a final moment of silence surrounded us. The hum of nearby cars echoed in the stillness. Maybe they were able to catch a glimpse of our ceremony; maybe they were driving to one themselves. It was a

perfectly clear night. If you looked up at the sky, you could see the stars- the bright drops contrasting nicely with the dark background. The crowd dispersed minutes later, and people continued on their ways: some kept walking through the lights and others went home. The glow became dimmer and dimmer as lights were blown out. The evening came to a close and everyone returned to his or her respective places. The world continued on, but we knew that 9/11 would

willing to speak out against bullying. WMA’s new marketing director Ms. Rothschild, set the plan in motion by pointing out that WMA had everything the crew was looking for: a scenic campus, flexible class schedules, and cooperative students. According to Ms. Rothschild, “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition came to Wilbraham & Monson Academy because of our beautiful campus and diverse, talented student body. This was a once in a lifetime experience for our students and we couldn’t be happier with how it played out.” The main event of the day came when Extreme Makeover: Home Edition’s special musical guest, Cody Simpson performed a set for students of

WMA and St. Michaels school in the campus gym. Cody Simpson was chosen for the event because of his affiliation with the Defeat The Label movement. Defeat the Label is working to promote an inclusive, judgment-free society, void of social labels and stereotypes. Informally known as ‘The Australian Justin Beiber’, Simpson played a few of his hit songs and voiced his opinions on bullying. Bullying has been a major concern in America for the past few years. One in every seven kids has either been a bully or a victim of bullying. Even though bullying may seem like a distant problem to many of us, the effects of this epidemic can be found in our own back yard. In April of 2009, Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover took his own life on the third floor of his family’s Springfield home as a result of bullying. Since then, the family could not bear to be on that floor of

Continued on Page 2

Cody Simpson Rocks the House (Extremely) By NICOLE ROBITAILLE ‘12 Staff Writer On December 2, 2011 on ABC, Wilbraham & Monson Academy students will have the unique opportunity to watch themselves on national television. This fall, the cameras were rolling when Extreme Makeover: Home Edition chose the WMA campus to shoot scenes for an upcoming episode. On Monday, September 12, students flooded the front steps of Rich Hall. Some were star struck, some were confused, and some were just excited to get out of their E block class. But the bottom line was everyone was excited to witness the filming of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. As their first task, the show’s crew filmed a short skit, with the participation of a number of WMA students. The main character of the skit was a nerdy kid who was leaving Rich Hall, when classmates bullied him physically and via cyber bullying. At the end

of the scene WMA students stood together with Ty Pennington and the home makeover team to put an end to bullying. So how did WMA get the opportunity to be involved in the shows anti-bullying episode? It all started with Ms. Norman, who attended the Extreme Makeover kick off party with the WMA Prefects at Springfield College this August. According to Steven Ragnauth, “The kick off event was a moving discussion about bullying and its consequences” The crew was in search of a school with students

Continued on Page 2



ATLAS Staff Change, But Why? Editors-in-Chief Teresa Kennedy ‘12 Austin Little ‘12 Sara Tardiff ‘12 News Editor Eva Landers ‘12

Production Editor/Photographer Sarah Goolishian ‘13 Department Editors Nicholas Jalbert ‘12 (Editorial) Brandon McKenna ’12 (Sports) Nora Harrington ‘13 (Arts) Staff Writers Stephanie Reeves ‘12 Nicole Robitaille ‘12 Arnelle Williams ‘13 Mia Konstantakos ‘13 Issa Best ‘13 Kelsey Gomes ‘13 Maria Waslick ‘13 Production Steven Ragnauth ‘12 Faculty Advisor Timothy Harrington Additional Photography Matt T. Risley Risley Photography

Hannah Peloquin ‘12

NICHOLAS JALBERT ‘12 Staff Writer Inertia is comfortable, whereas change is not. People are drawn to the familiar, and generally dislike the foreign and the new. Therefore, when the school schedule is changed there is bound to be frustration among the various groups of the Academy community. This year sees the addition of new blocks to our schedule, as well as an allotment of time during the academic day towards two scholarly activities once confined to Tuesday and Sunday nights-- Journalism and Model United Nations, respectively. Some decry this new schedule, but is their frustration merely a side effect of the transition surrounding change? Was the schedule of years past superior to the new one, or do people merely view that which is gone under the golden haze of nostalgia? To begin, it should be noted that the schedule for Monday, Tuesday and Friday has remained largely unaffected. Only Wednesday and Thursday have seen their internal components reworked into something different from last schedule. Wednesday now has two new blocks: Advisor/Class Meeting and Meeting/AP. Thursday is now home to an X/AP block immediately before Chapel Meeting. While Wednesday was extended a bit and the majority of school can’t treat itself to an early

11:30 lunch (to the relief of the dining hall staff), the new blocks do allot much needed time to certain groups. Having Advisor/ Class meeting on Wednesday allows School Meeting to run to three o’clock without infringing on anybody else’s time. For students taking AP classes, and for the teachers instructing AP classes, the Meeting/ AP and X/AP blocks may prove invaluable. Our schedule has always left AP classes strapped for time: WMA students simply have fewer classes to learn the material on AP exams. Thanks to these extra blocks, AP courses can delve into more material than ever before: science courses now have time for extra labs, and English and history can dedicate more time to writing. Indeed, the majority of the alterations made to the WMA schedule are at worst benign and at best highly beneficial. There are, however, two classes for which the changes are controversial: Journalism and Model United Nations, which are now included in the daily curriculum, but have limited extracurricular time. From an administrative standpoint, it may seem best to include these academically centered courses in the daily schedule to neaten the WMA academic program. That said, both of these courses require an incredible amount of work that simply cannot be condensed into the L2 period. In addition, the students who participate in these activities carry heavy course loads. Since the sophomore and junior prospects for these courses are already occupied, many are unable to take these classes. As a result, when the current Journalism and Model United Nation members graduate, both programs will be dangerously understaffed. In the worst possible scenario, these programs may not be able to function over the next few years. That said, there is no paucity of qualified students at this school, just a dearth of time. This issue is easily remedied. Both activities require time outside of classes, so the logical solution would be to give them more time. Restore their ordinary meeting times, or something close to that. Though Journalism has been granted the Wednesday activities period, which is certainly a step in the right direction, more time is required. These programs bring

out the best in the students who choose to participate in them. Why not add time for these most illustrious classes? Allow both the classes and the students involved in them to reach their full potential, and it will reflect brilliantly on the WMA community as a whole.

9/11 cont’d

Continued from Page 1 always be a day filled with remembrance and mourning. The tragedies hit home, even if some of us didn’t personally know anyone who was affected. Our ceremony couldn’t fix all the damage that was done, or all the lives that were ended, or all the hearts that were now broken, but being together somehow lessened the hurt a little bit. We will never forget all of the brave firefighters who risked their lives, the many volunteers who spent months looking for pieces of bodies in the rubble, and the families who have stayed strong despite their losses. These people will remain in our thoughts and prayers: it is this that we will truly remember.


Continued from Page 1 their home. As a result, Carl’s siblings slept together in the living room couch and on roll away beds. Their grandmother who was unable to climb the stairs was confined to the first floor of the home. Plastic bags and containers served as their dressers. The hundred year old home was in desperate need of remodeling. Simply put, this house no longer suited the needs of this family. But even while living in this cramped environment, the Walker family has done everything in their power to speak out against bullying, making this family an excellent choice for Extreme Makeover: Home Edition The TV program sent the lucky family on a seven-day vacation to Hollywood while their home was completely redone. WMA students were invited to witness the unveiling took place on Sunday, September 18th as well as take part in a 5k Anti-bullying road race. With the house completely renovated and the Walker family enjoying life in their new home, the only thing left to do is wait for the episode to air.


WMA Activities Fair: Join the Club By TERESA KENNEDY ‘12 Editor In Chief This year, for the first time, Wilbraham & Monson Academy will have a club program. In the past, Break Free and Rise & Soar have been the only ongoing clubs. This year 19 new clubs, covering areas ranging from “Forest Stewardship” to “Discovering Talent”, will join them. On Tuesday September 20, WMA hosted its first club fair in the Student Center. Each club had a table where they could display posters, previous work, or in the case of the Health and Wellness Club, food. The event was what Ms. Norman, coordinator of the event, called a “huge success.” Around 80 people attended the exposition, and while some clubs raised more interest than others, the sign up sheets were overflowing with prospective members. In the words of Ms. Norman: “Having a strong club program only adds to the community.” The reason for the club fair, Ms. Norman said, was that students were asking about WMA’s clubs or what they clubs they could start on campus, but had no idea what kind of programs WMA had already.

Because of this, a fair seemed like a perfect way to kick off the year, letting people know what clubs are available while simultaneously giving students incentives to start new clubs. As many students may recall, at the end of last year Ms. Norman sent out a survey asking students what kind of clubs they would like to have at WMA. Some of the top answers included a glee club (which morphed into the Discovering Talent Club), a chess club, and a community service club. Ms. Norman, interested students and advisors went forward with these ideas and turned them into the exciting new clubs that we have today. According to Ms. Norman, the new push for WMA clubs was an initiative that both Admissions and College Counseling were promoting, each for their own reasons. From an admissions standpoint, when prospective students ask what clubs WMA has to offer, we want to be able to give them a solid answer. Since most schools have a variety of clubs to choose from, emphasizing our new, strong program should draw even more students.

The college counseling office is, of course, also aware of their importance of clubs. Since extracurricular activities are a key factor in raising one’s chance of college admission, they have recognized the importance of WMA becoming more club-friendly. The greater the number of and variety in clubs for students to join, the greater the chance students will become more involved in outside the classroom activities. Clubs have, in fact, been placed so high on WMA’s agenda that a new “club period” has been created every school day, running from 6:30 until 7:30. Now, with all academic classes during the day, there is really no excuse to NOT join a club because nights (despite study hall) have been freed up for students. The large range of different clubs being offered this year is meant to fill the eclectic interests of the WMA community. Clubs for the 2011-2012 school year include:

Break Free, Rise & Soar, Baseball, Sports Statistics, Dog Lovers, Debate, Global Student Union, Global Albedo Student Project, Health and Wellness, Running, Fiction Writing, Chess, Bicycle Service Corps, Forest Stewardship, Discovering Talent, World Quest, Cooking, Energy of the Future, Pool (Billiards), Community Service, and Art Magazine. The dreams of students and faculty alike for a greater offering in extracurricular activities have come to fruition. What does this mean for the student body of WMA? We expect to have a thriving club program at WMA this year with something for everyone. Some clubs have already begun preliminary meetings and planning but it is not too late to sign up if you missed the fair. You still have the opportunity to take advantage of the great new selection of clubs at WMA.

WMA Service Corps. Reaches Out

By ARNELLE WILLIAMS ‘13 Staff Writer WMA is a school that loves to give to the larger community around us. Following the natural disasters represented by the June 1 tornado that tore through Western

Massachusetts and the flooding in the aftermath of Hurricane Irene, students and teachers from WMA went into the community to help where they could. Recently, WMA hosted the Extreme Home Edition crew on our campus, WMA demonstrated the kind of community and their program on bullying. Seeing how popular the Sunday

Friends of The Homeless soup kitchen ran last year, Ms. Norman and Mr. Lombard created the Service Corps program. The WMA Service Corps is a daily afternoon activity for high school juniors and seniors who wish to be community service volunteers outside of WMA. It seeks to build bridges between the Academy and service organizations in the Springfield area. “There are so many people and organizations that need help and WMA has a responsibility to give back to the community,” said Mr. Lombard. During the fall and the spring, from Monday through Saturday, the Corps go out to different places in Wilbraham and in other towns. An example of this is the Scantic Valley YMCA, where

WMA students help out kids from the nearby Stony Hill Elementary School with their homework and organize games. WMA students sorted clothing and organized food for tornado relief victims at The Community Survival Center. The students toured facilities as they learned about the services that the organization provides. In addition, students volunteered at the O’Connor Animal Adoption Center to help care for their animals and organize can pet food drives. Students also went to the Crimson & Clover Community Supported Agriculture Farm where they learned about organic farm practices and how to harvest vegetables. Additionally, the WMA community and the town of Wilbraham are involved with the Bicycle Project, in which they gather, organize, and ship bicycles to underprivileged communities abroad where bikes can improve their mobile lifestyle. Mr. Lombard looks to further expand this program by doing community service at other venues such as medical and senior centers,


and by helping individual seniors throughout this community with yard work or basic home cleaning. Community service programs have always been “near and dear to his heart.” Mr. Lombard has worked for three years at the District Action Project, a residential community service program at Georgetown University, where each student had to work a minimum of five hours each week in Washington, DC. In addition to doing that program, he volunteered at a soup kitchen called So Others May Eat (SOME). Mr. Lombard says, “One of the best parts of the Service Program for me has been getting to know my all-Chinese team of Shirley Guo, Charles Jin, Jenny Huang, Mamie Mei, Vicky Wu, and Levy Wang.” Mr. Lombard is very proud of the group’s strong work effort. During one of the farm harvests, when Mr. Lombard requested only fifteen minutes of their time to pick cherry tomatoes to bring back to WMA, they frowned, wanting to work longer so they could bring back more tomatoes. When it comes to service, they say: “Please, sir, may I have some more.”



Insects & Tornadoes Storm into Binney By AUSTIN LITTLE ‘12 Co-Editor in Chief On September 19, 2011, Mr. Bloomfield opened his art show, Tornadoes and Insects. The focus of Tornadoes and Insects was on exploration of the symmetrical properties of both tornadoes and insects. Many students and faculty flocked to the Binney Art Gallery to view Mr. Bloomfield’s controversial new show. Tornadoes and Insects explores two very elements of nature, and the pairing of the two may seem strange at first. However, Mr. Bloomfield offers an insightful explanation for the pairing, saying that, “Both are essentially symmetrical.” Mr. Bloomfield links Tornados with insects by depicting the symmetrical aspects of both. Mr. Bloomfield also offers a much deeper, thought provoking explanation for the link between tornados and insects. Mr. Bloomfield noted that, “Thematically, tornados affect humans and visible things as well as insects.” This thought brings deeper meaning to the show, as it forces patrons to consider not only the devastation that humans face in the aftermath

of tornados, but also the effects of tornados on nature. The inspiration for Tornados and Insects may appear to be the tornado that hit Western Massachusetts in the spring of this year. However, Mr. Bloomfield began thinking about depicting tornados earlier when the Midwest was struck by tornados, However, Mr. Bloomfield says that once the Western Mass tornado hit, it became a part of his vision. When asked about the process of creating his art, Mr. Bloomfield says that each painting is different. Some, like was June 1st 2011 Tornado, took ten weeks to complete. Others took only a few hours to complete. One interesting technique Mr. Bloomfield uses in his show is building off of other works in the show. Mr. Bloomfield has several paintings that are built

off of each other, and he makes slight alterations to each one. Walking into Binney, the first painting on display was June 1st 2011 Tornado. This painting depicts the destruction of the tornado that struck Western Massachusetts in the late spring. This painting is the largest in size, and as you walk into the gallery, it leaves little doubt as to what the subject of the show is about. Entering the main gallery, the images of tornados and insects greets you in a panoramic view. The pictures of conical tornados blend seamlessly with symmetrical insects. There is a balance achieved by depicting massive, destructive tornados in the same room as tiny,

Ask Atlas: Too Much Work! BY ISSA BEST ‘13 Staff Writer Dear Atlas, My mind is about to explode!!!! I take nothing but AP classes, have activities every night of the week, and I am now head delegate in Model UN. I barely have time to brush my teeth before I leave my dorm (of which I am now PREFECT)!!! I thought that being an upper classmen would be fun and easy but so far the responsibility is overwhelming and I am most afraid that my grades will plummet. What can I do so I don’t get burnt out. Signed, Flame On (but Dear Flaming, First, calm down. Cleaning up guts from the ceiling is precious valuable time that you cannot waste. Having a little bit of pressure to keep you on your toes is a good thing. Make sure that you plan out time every week to organize and make sure you are not double booked. If you ever feel that you can’t handle something, try talking to your teachers to get extensions

or extra help. And even though this sounds so clichéd and like what Dr. Seuss says, take it one day at time and one step at a time and “you will succeed, 100% guaranteed!” Dear Atlas, There is a large mountain lion in the woods in my back yard. What do I do? Signed, Not Scared Yet But He is Getting Closer Dear Dances With Cougars. Well, Atlas has never encountered a Cougar before (not that kind anyway) so we consulted noted mountain lion expert, Mr. Ekness. He says that if see a mountain lion you want to make as much noise as possible in order to avoid surprising the lion. Make an effort to appear as large as possible and never turn your back or bend down when faced by the lion, and never run away or you risk provoking the lion to attack. And if you do happen to be engaged by a lion in physical combat . . . FIGHT BACK!!!

Dear Atlas, My older sister is awesome. That may not sound like much of a problem but it is: my sister went here for four years and was involved in everything. She played three varsity sports, was on student government, and was always on Highest Honors. Every one loved her but now it is my turn to rule the school. I need help making new friends and a good name for my self and I don’t want to be called by my sister’s name. Signed, Not Martha Dear Martha, What’s wrong with living in your older siblings shadow a little. I know that when my older sister went to the same school as me, I was the most popular guy on campus when she left. Generally speaking your older sister probably had a legion of underclassmen followers that loved her. If you show them how awesome you are, they’ll end up loving you, too. Just be yourself...and avoid her hair style, the teachers she had, the sports she played, and wearing any of her clothes.

innocent insects. The pairing of the two ideas makes perfect sense upon entering the gallery. Paintings, it seems, are not like children. When asked if he has a favorite, without hesitation Mr. Bloomfield says that he is particularly fond of, “The hybrid picture.” This is the perfect painting to have as a favorite, as it combines insects with humans, further linking the effects of tornados, humans, and insects. Mitch Pastore 14’, found inspiration in the show. Mitch remarks that, “These paintings remind me that great art can be found in nature.” This is clearly the reaction of a student who has been able to appreciate the delicate balance of nature that Mr. Bloomfield has captured in this show. Tornados and Insects is an amazing show, depicting two seemingly unrelated topics in a harmonious and intriguing way. Mr. Bloomfield’s artwork is wonderful, and Binney Art Gallery is now the place to be on campus if you want to stimulate your mind through the visual Arts. Mr. Bloomfield’s show will be open until October 16th, so everyone on campus should be able to see the show!

Rio! By SARAH GOOLISHIAN ‘13 Production Editor Rio is a cute family movie that children and adults alike can enjoy. The music and the characters quickly draw you in, and soon you are apart of the adventure. Blue (voice by Jesse Eisenberg), who is a blue macaw, is used to life in Minnesota with his owner Linda, (voice by Leslie Mann). Life suddenly changes when they both encounter a Brazilian ornithologist Tulio (voice by Rodrigo Santoro). Blue soon finds out that he is the only male of his kind, but there is a female blue macaw waiting in Brazil. Linda and Blue find themselves on an adventure bigger than just saving Blue’s species. The setting, Rio de Janeiro, mixed in with the music, is what makes this movie unique and modern. Overall Rio is an excellent family movie, with music that makes you want to dance and a setting that makes you want to travel. Good job Rio, you have successfully entertained.


Kooks’ New Album is “Junk” By SARA TARDIFF ‘12 Co-Editor In Chief Perhaps there is a reason the Kooks aren’t getting much credit for their latest album Junk of the Heart. I mean, they are the perfect band for those of you who like the feel of old music but don’t want to go through the effort of figuring out what a record player is. The Kooks have had relatively the same sound and feel throughout Inside In/Inside Out and Konk, but now Junk of the Heart gives off a more mature vibe. This new adult persona is understandable since their last album came out three years ago. Although it is hard to put their genre into words, I would categorize it as delirious British guitar-based rock with a few synths and sing-songy choruses thrown in for good measure. Junk of the Heart is a bit more peppy than their previously recorded albums. In total, it clocks in at around 37 minutes, but each song is filled with as many attempts at achieving a hit radio song as humanly possible. There are so many upbeat

choruses and dreamy lyrics I feel like the Kooks and the Wiggles have collaborated. They’ve both got accents, right? Their track “Rosie” is kind of a disaster. The entirety of it is placed over a sixties beat, with random electronic keyboards fading in and out. Don’t panic, you might think this whole album must be a complete failure after hearing this song, but it’s not all bad. Some songs like “How’d You Like That” come off as a bit repetitive, but need I remind you how well “Shine On” worked out for them (Hello, Michelob Ultra commercial)? It is about as close to their old stuff as you are going to get with this album. So, if you’re into Konk like most Kook fans are, you will probably savor the first half of Junk of the Heart. “Taking Pictures of You” truly deserves a chance. The opening offers an early Beatles vibe. Singer Luke Pritchard’s accent really ties the whole song together, pretty lyrics and all. Or the lyrics could certainly be interpreted as horrifyingly creepy. It never is established whether these pictures

are of a consenting girlfriend or sleeping neighbor who left her blinds open. “F*** the World Off” not only has a stupid name, but the song itself is one of those tracks that you just skip over in the effort of finding a song you do want to listen to. It really has no substance and in fact I’m having a hard time remembering what it sounds like at all. That is how insignificant a piece it is. It seems impossible to stop bringing up the Beatles whenever discussing British bands, but the Kooks’ “Petulia” is incredibly similar in comparison to “Michelle” by the ultimate British boy band of all time. It has that slow, acoustic melody and the name Petulia


seems to actually roll off Pritchard’s tongue in a similar way one might hum “Miiiiichelle, my belle”. Of all the tracks on Junk of the Heart, the most epic is without a doubt “Time Above the Earth”. It is perfectly placed right in the middle of the album. It included multiple layers of string instruments, and hauntingly lovely lyrics such as “Am I really here at all?” which are repeated for emphasis. Short but sweet, if you are going to bother with any of the songs on this album, this is the one to play. If you weren’t a fan of Pritchard’s vocals before, they’re pretty much the same so this album won’t suddenly change your mind. He sounds as British and old school as always. Junk of the Heart, although upbeat, is depressing to listen to, with few real tracks to be found. The songs that sucked, sucked. The ones that were good, were beautiful. Maybe the Kooks should stop trying to be on the Top 100 list and just go with the flow.

What I Read on My Summer Vacation By NORA HARRINGTON ‘13 Art Editor Instead of writing our own reviews we decided to ask the teachers what they thought about their summer reading. Ms. Markowski read Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer. Ms. Markowski describes eating animals as a book in the same vein as Food Inc. The book is a non-fiction account of Jonathan Safran Foers’s investigation of the food industry. He is about to have a child, which leads him to wonder about the food he will be feeding his child. He has gone back and forth between a vegetarian and an omnivore diet his whole life. The book is his account of his investigative journalism and exploration of the food

industry. Ms. Markowski said that she likes books that look at the food we eat and the way the food industry has and hasn’t evolved since Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle. Over the summer, Mrs. Dziura read Little Bee by Chris Cleave. She called it “Insane! Best thing I read! It was shutup good! Extraordinary! The characters are gorgeous! The story is somewhat based to fact and is about a girl who goes from Nigeria to England and how she profoundly affects the lives of a group of English citizens“ She ended her review by saying, “I want to adapt it into a theater piece.”

Mr. Dziura read Ender’s Game, it is a sci- fi book. The original short story was published in 1977. In the story, a future Earth has been decolonized by a race from another

planet with creatures called “the bugs.” They take select children and put them in military type schools in space. Mr. Dziura calls it the “most heartbreaking, poignant and accessible sci-fi book in years. Everyone from 9th grade up could read it and get something out of it” Among other things, Ms. Levhiem read Dan Savage’s The Kid: What Happened After My Boyfriend and I Decided To Go Get Pregnant. The Kid is about Dan Sav-

age and his Boyfriend’s decision to adopt a child. The Kid shares their experience dealing with their family and friends reaction to this decision. Ms. Levheim called the story incredibly funny. Ms. Cole read Elegance of the Hedgehog after seeing the French movie in France. She read the book trying to perfect her French. The book takes place in an apartment building in France, where a young girl lives downstairs and an older man lives upstairs. He is a little quirky and they develop a friendship, but not a weird one. There are other characters coming and going in the apartment building and living their lives. Ms. Cole enjoyed the novel because, as she was reading it, she discovered that she could read most of it in French. However, because she read it in another language, she warns that her summary may not be accurate. Buyer beware.



We Are Titans! By STEVE RAGNAUTH Staff Writer For many people, meeting new students is their favorite part of the year. Those people were really excited when they realized that 107 students (and counting would be matriculating at Wilbraham and Monson Academy this fall. These new students represent 21 countries from all over the world: 64% are from the U.S.A., 11% are from China, 5% are from Korea, 4% are from Germany, and 2% are from the Bahamas. There is also one new student each from the following countries: Angola, Costa Rica, Haiti, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, New Zealand, Nigeria, Singapore, South Africa, Taiwan, Tajikistan, U.S. Virgin Islands, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, and Vietnam. In this year’s new student population, there are roughly 10 more new guys than girls. About 34% of them are day students, and 66% are boarders. Most of the new students are freshmen and sophomores; 43% are in ninth grade, and


4% 5% 64%


Angola Rica 27% are in tenth grade.Costa However, there are also 14 new juniors, Italy Japan 3 new seniors, and 15 new PGs. New Zealand Nigeria Orientation was organized South Taiwan over by Mr.Africa Lombard and involved half of theIslands student body, due to US Virgin Uzbekistan the large number of new students. Spain Bahamas Hermes Helpers, prefects, and Korea China teacher volunteers led new student groups of around twelve. Students participated in activities including name games, “ice breakers,” and team building, which all cumulated in and egg drop. While few of the eggs survived the one-story fall, everyone had a good time, learned at least a few names, and made new friends.

Haiti Kazakhstan Singapore Tajikistan Venezuela Germany

Country Count Angola 1 Costa Rica 1 Haiti 1 Italy 1 Japan 1 Kazakhstan 1 New Zealand 1 Nigeria 1 Singapore 1 South Africa 1 Taiwan 1 Tajikistan 1 US Virgin Islands 1 Uzbekistan 1 Venezuela 1 Spain 1 Bahamas 2 Germany 4 Korea 5 China 12 USA 68

USA Day Students; 34%

Boarders; 66%

Grapes of Wrath: Expanded Summer Reading Boarders

By EVA LANDERS ‘12 News Editor

This year, Wilbraham & Monson Academy’s summer reading program has undergone some serious alterations. Farewell to the days of inconsequential quizzes: starting this year, summer reading is becoming much more serious. In preparation for the 2011-2012 school year, students and faculty were asked to read John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath over summer vacation. At the very beginning of the school year, the WMA community was informed that a new approach would be taken to incorporate this book into the academic year. In previous years, students were only given one minor assessment in advisee groups and may have had one short chapel speech on the book. However, it became clear that this year a heightened importance would be put on the all school read. The adjustments in the summer reading program this year have an impact on many areas of WMA life. Throughout the school year, chapel presentations will be given on various subjects relating to The Grapes of Wrath, ranging from the history of the Great Depression to the scientific

reasoning behind the Dust Bowl. Movie showings and art exhibits are scheduled to offer students a visual image of what life was like In the 1930s for the characters of the novel . Guest lecturers, such as the esteemed poet, professor, and novelist Jay Parini, have been asked to speak to the school about John Steinbeck’s and the value of The Grapes of Wrath. In addition, all students are now required to take a quiz in English class assessing their understanding of the book, with the assessments counting towards trimester grades. In this way, WMA is trying to ensure that The Grapes of Wrath will remain a constant theme throughout the entire year. The big question is, what was the motivation for these changes? Summer reading coordinator Mrs. Hutcheson explained, “Last year I got a lot of feedback

Day Students not exactly an easy read—the that there was not much followfaculty was aware of this when through with summer reading, they selected the summer readand that students weren’t having enough discussion about the book. ing. However, when Ms. Levheim approached Mrs. Hutcheson with When I took a course at Middlebury this sum- a college board backed list entitled mer about how “101 Great Books for College Bound Students,” both decided that communities the Steinbeck novel would be a can interpret good read for the entire school. “It literature, I decided to take is difficult to find a book that both what I learned a freshman girl and a senior boy and apply it to would enjoy,” says Mrs. Hutcheson “The goal in choosing a book WMA’s sumwas not finding one that everyone mer reading program.” Her would love, because that would be impossible. We wanted to find goal is for the entire commu- a book that would make for great nity to be able discussions.”There are a number of global themes in the novel, includto read and ing economic problems, migration, learn about clashes with government, poverty, one book together. This sentiment and environmental disasters. Since was echoed by Ms. Levheim, who all of these conflicts can be found also played an instrumental role around the world, the faculty in creating the new program. “We thought that everyone would be really wanted students to read this able to relate to the novel. They book and see how it can relate to every academic field. You can view hoped that international students the plight of the Joad family from a would be able to find similarities between the journey of the fictihistorical way, a scientific way, or tious Joad family and the history even a humanitarian way. Mostly I just wanted the kids to know that of their country, while domestic we can all learn more together,and students would find comparisons between the Great Depression and the Grapes of Wrath was a perfect the problems that the United States book to do this with.” faces today. The Grapes of Wrath is



Field Hockey Titans Christen New Field

By KELSEY GOMES Staff Writer

Walking down Faculty Street in one may hear and see sticks being used to flick, push and hit a ball into an opposing goal. Here is the new 2011 version of

the hockey Titans, complete with a new turf field, new coaches, and new players. The program is starting to come together after a few years of constant “rebuilding” reflected in the team’s 2-1 home victory over Williams on Oct. 5 and close 4-1 loss to Westover on Sept. 28. “Although we lost a few seniors, we have also gained a number of talented younger players,” senior captain Richelle Davis comments. “Our new players this year have already made an impact on the team. From the beginning of preseason, they have shown both enthusiasm and intensity.” She notes that the new field has helped. “Our team has been doing really well thanks to the turf upgrade. We have been waiting for this for a while and it is very exciting. Practicing on the turf is completely different from practicing on grass. The turf is also an advantage when it comes to formal games because most of our away

games are on turf and since we’ve used grass in the past, we are ver-

a section of United States History for international students and two sections of middle school French. About joining the Wilbraham & Monson community. Coach Fontaine says, “The community atmosphere has helped me adjust the most. The faculty is extremely friendly and helpful and I feel like everyone has welcomed me into the school community.” About her decision to come to WMA, she says, “When I started my senior year at Colby I was figuring out what I wanted to do after school. I thought about a bunch of different avenues from museum education and event planning to college coaching, and teaching. I decided to look at a preparatory school career because I could combine teaching along with coaching athletics. WMA has improved my teaching skills as I interact in the of the seniors would say so, too. classroom with the same students I The game is much easier to play on turf: the ball moves a lot faster, coach on the field.” On the strengths and weakpasses are more accurate, and shots nesses of the team, Coach Fontaine are easier than they would be on the grass. The game is quicker and noted: “The team is currently adjusting to playing on a turf field, more exciting.” as there are many differences be Davis credited Coach Fontaine and Coach Burke with improving the program “tremendously.” She said the new coaching duo “knows the game very well and are easy to talk to. Both are great role models for all of us. Just within the past few weeks, They are a great addition to not only the team but to WMA as well.” Ms. Fontaine is a native of Wilbraham. She graduated from Colby College this pastspring with a B.A. in history and anthropology. At Colby, she played field hockey and was team captain. This year she is the Head Coach tween grass and turf. Turf demands for Varsity Field Hockey and near-perfect skills from its players. That said, our team is still overall very strong and also has an incredibly positive attitude. Our seniors, especially our captains, Richelle and Vicky, have done an incredible job creating a positive team atmosphere. I could not have asked for a more positive group of scholar athletes to coach. With such great attitudes, we can work and practice to develop the skills necessary to play on the new surface.” Coach Fontaine said her goal for her team this season is to “maintain consistent improveassistant coach for Girls Varsity Lacrosse. Ms. Fontaine is teaching ment.” She added that she would satile players.” On the overall effect of the new turf, players, and field, Davis added: “We are very thankful for the hard work that has been put into building the new field.. Personally, I am excited to have it my last year, and I am sure the rest

like to incorporate “new hockey techniques and skills” into the games. And she wants the girls to bring creative and innovative solutions to the game. Ms. Caroline Burke is from Brookline, Massachusetts, and attended the Winsor School, a private preparatory school. She graduated from Amherst College this spring with a double major in Latin and Economics. She has also studied at the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome and will teach upper school and middle school Latin at Wilbraham & Monson. Ms. Burke played lacrosse at Amherst College and is the Head Coach of Girls Varsity Lacrosse as well as Assistant Coach for the Varsity Field Hockey team. She is a dormitory parent in Smith Hall. Coach Burke said she is excited to tackle the challenge of teaching at a preparatory school, and is especially excited to get back into field hockey. Like Ms. Fontaine, Ms.. Burke observed that her team has “a lot of girls with little or no experience playing field hockey, so the first few weeks were a lot of “back to basics”, practices; however, I think that the girls’ attitudes and willingness to try new things are some of our team’s greatest assets. I hope that all of the girls finish the season with a strong base of field hockey skills and that they come through having had a really positive experience this fall.” With all the changes of to the Field Hockey program this year, the team—and indeed the whole Wilbraham & Monson Academy community—is highly optimistic about the 2011 season. With a new state-of-the-art new field, skilled new coaches, and promising new players, the team is aiming for success this year. All they need to do now is go out and win a few more.



Promising Fall for Titan Athletics

By BRANDON MCKENNA ‘12 Sports Editor

With Summer waning, the leaves changing, and warm jackets becoming a necessity, it’s time once again for Titan Fall Athletics. This Fall looks to be a promising one for Wilbraham and Monson Varsity Athletics, as each Titan team gets back into the swing of the season. The Titan coaching staff’s are full of new faces, as the Boys, Soccer and Football teams and the Girls’ Field Hockey and Cross Country teams, as well as the Water Polo team, welcome new additions into the coaching ranks. With high hopes for this young season, and after persevering through a grueling heat-stricken preseason, the Titan athletes are ready to step out into the crisp Fall air and compete: The Girls’ Cross Country team, led by first year head coach Caroline Smith, look to make use of their newfound numbers to put together a successful season. The nine-runner team looks to build on last year’s performance, where although they were lacking the depth of runners to score consistently, they were able to compete against much larger schools. This year will be no different for the

team led by captains Heather Little (’13) and Mia Konstantakos (’13), as they will be running against similarly large schools throughout the course of the season. The girls have already competed in a number of meets, including the Marionapolis Invitational, where they placed third, narrowly missing second place by two points, and the Westminister Invitational where they held their own against tough competition. With five new athletes joining four returning runners, including up and coming star Marissa Small-Towns (’14), the Girls’ Cross Country team is prepared for success, and looks to capitalize on this preparation in competition against schools such as MacDuffie, Cheshire, and Hyde during the rest of the season.

This years Titan Football team looks to be as good as any in recent years. But what separates this particular team from those in years past? According to Head Coach Jeff Vartabedian, this

year’s Titans have “more size on the line than we have had here in quite a while”, with captain Sam Hart (’12) being joined by fellow senior Jameil Ali and postgraduates Desmond Gray and Craig Martin, and new junior Bryant Colon. The Titans look to make use of this size on the offensive side of the ball by pairing it with the speed of All-League wide-receiver Jared Osumah (’12) and senior receiver Mike Mendes. On the ground, the Titans will look to the talented “thunder and lightning” pair of running-backs, sophomore Shacor Privott and postgraduate O’Brian McHayle. Running the show at quarterback will be senior captain Elijah Barrows, who will be taking over the role of starter for the first time. Defensively, the Titans will look to their big line and strong play in the defensive backfield by postgraduate Carrick Driscoll and toughness of senior linebacker Max Rankin to complement their speed and athleticism. The team will also rely on the foot of senior Ryan Dahlen in the special teams department, in addition to contribution from “lots of key underclassmen”. The Titans return 13 players, who will be joined by 17 newcomers. Despite only returning nine of twenty-two starters, Coach Vartabedian has high hopes for this year’s group, and will look to improve upon last years 3-5 record. A new turf field is not the only novel aspect for this years Girls’ Field Hockey team, as the 2011 Titans also have a new head coach, Elizabeth Fontaine. The group will look to captains Richelle Davis and Vicky Liu,

who thus far have “been doing a fantastic job leading the team in practice and during the games” according to Coach Fontaine, to lead the team to victory. The team returns 10 athletes in addition to 13 new players, 9 of whom have never previously played field hockey. There is not one single “key player”, for as stated by Coach Fontaine, field hockey is “a game where you need all 11 players on the field to be key players”, you “cannot have one or two superstars and expect to be productive on the field. If anything you need a team the supports one another and communicates to each other”. Thus far, it seems as though the team has developed into just that, a team. The “sportsmanship and intensity of the team is incredible” according to the first-year coach, and everyday vast improvement is seen. The Titans will look to make use of the sense of camaraderie that has developed throughout the course of their season, and capitalize upon their team-bond. The girls will look to implement the tactics they’ve learned during practice in their games, and are optimistic in their outlook on the rest of the season. The Boys’ Varsity Soccer, with Head Coach Gary Cook and new Assistant Sean McGrath ‘06 (who returns to WMA after playing

four years at Brown University), is led by Captains Chris Lewis ’12 and Phil Antonacci ’13. The Titans look to capitalize on a combination of veteran returners and new

talent. Offensively, the Titans look to new additions H.S. Jung ’12 and postgraduate Nick Levesque along with returners Adolph Kawuba ’13 and German Ortega ’12. In addition to Antonacci and Lewis, the defense returns Frankie Baltazar ‘13, and Joey O’Connell ‘14. Freshman Andy Goncalves and Evan Roy look to make an impact as well. Anchored by postgraduate Goalkeeper Ryan McLarney, the Titans have high expectations for the season. The Girls’ Varsity Soccer team, coached by Don Nicholson and led by Senior Captains Brianna Goncalves and Emma Hjarne, looks to improve upon their 2010 success during this Fall’s campaign. This year’s team is made up of a mixture of youth and veteran experience, and the girls hope to capitalize on their wealth of talent. With the ever-dangerous Carly Cronin (’13) and Christina Wakefield (’14) up top, and the ability of center midfielders Brianna Goncalves and Molly Moran (’13) to move the ball around, this year’s team will look to get the ball forward. Expectations are high for this year’s squad, and the team will look for the underclassmen-talent to combine with veteran ability to win a lot of matches. This year’s Boys’ Cross Country, coached by Dan Moran, is led by Senior Trey Kelley. The team will look to capitalize upon a mix of savvy veterans and talented youngsters this Fall, and is excited about the possibility of an immensely successful season led by returning vets Kelley, Joe Thibault ‘13 and WingHo Chan ’13. The Water Polo team is lead by new coach Hank Elliot. The team will look to senior Captains and leaders Ben Marcus ‘12, Kaylee Walton 12, and Nicole Robitaille ‘12 this Fall, and hope to exceed the high expectations that have been put in place for this year’s squad.

Atlas, Volume 4, Issue 1  

Atlas is the student newspaper.

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