Sober Start to Prom Day

For the fourth year in a row, HHS seniors prepared for the prom tonight by attending a morning of presentations that focused on the dangers of impaired or distracted driving.

Local firefighters, emergency service workers, and law enforcement officials worked together with HHS administrators to provide seniors with a full morning or sound advice and clear-eyed visions of what can happen if responsible behavior is ignored.

“Four years ago we had scheduled these activities on another day but were rained out,” said Dr. Galiana, the assistant principal who supervises senior activities. “The only other time we had available was prom morning, so we rescheduled the presentations for then — and the reaction was fantastic, so we kept it.”

The goal of the entire series of presentations is to keep seniors aware of what can go wrong, and encourage the responsible and mature approach to prom activities that our community expects.

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Victims extracted from crash…

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Seniors witness the results of impaired

or distracted driving.

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Our gracious “victims” Mary Emily  Flores,

Katie Sheehan,  and Jade Cheatham.

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Speaker addresses seniors about his

experience as a drunk driver.

Are You Ready for War- Marvel Style?

By Romina Vasconcellos

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The time has come for the release of Captain America: Civil War! A little over two years after Winter Soldier, fans have sold out movie tickets all around the area.

The big question being asked is what team are you: Team Captain America or Team Iron Man?

The question can also be interpreted as a debate between use of power: should it be an individual’s choice or the responsibility of a government body?  And if the answer is governmental, what risks arise concerning privacy or exploitation?

Those who side with Captain America believe in human rights which include privacy. His intentions are purely for the potential of leading a “normal life” for superheroes.

On the other hand, Iron Man is all about the monitoring of superheroes’ actions. He wants the government to keep heroes “in check” to prevent catastrophes.

It is up to you to decide what is right and what is wrong!

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Student Editorial: The Dangers of May

By Khayla Dixon, Curtis Gaines, and Jesse Sanzari

It has come to that time of year when students begin slacking off; the spring sunshine all but blinds some of us. Thoughts of prom float through seniors’ heads and summer fun fills the minds of other students rather than the schoolwork at hand.

May is a month of excitement for all students, especially graduating seniors. For the freshmen, sophomores, and juniors, the excitement lies in managing to get through the school year. For seniors, it’s the anticipation leading up to the most exciting nights of high school, prom night and graduation.  And it is a time to dream about their future. This is good for students but we must not lose focus. The truth is, we still have two months of school left before summer vacation; beware of the temptation to slack off.

“The Dangers of May” catch some students off guard. We may forget to complete all of our homework assignments until that call home snaps us back into reality. May should be the month where we prioritize our workload over more fun activities. However, we students are gifted multi-taskers; we can focus on our studies and still have fun. Prioritizing responsibilities is key and will make for a successful end to the school year.

The dangers of May are capable of putting students in sticky situations later in the school year. Because of slacking, a student’s GPA might slip, leading to months of hard work being negated. Once final exams come around, such students will need to excel on the exam just to barely pass the school year.

Slacking can also affect college offers. Colleges are able to revoke scholarships to students who decide to coast at the end of the school year. Being an underclassmen, colleges will be deterred due to the student showing that one cannot stay consistent during the year. Succumbing to the dangers of May is the short term solution that may create a long term problem.

For expected graduates, senior year should be a memorable experience; it  offers many fun occasions. But remember that schoolwork does not have to impede on a good time. However, spending time with friends is not the only way you can have fun. It is not too late to enroll in extra-curricular clubs which offer a temporary distraction from school work while reflecting the work ethics of its members. Remember, responsibilities do not disappear as summer vacation approaches.

The best way to avoid senioritis (or any year “itis”) is to stop it before it starts. Falling into a slacker’s routine makes it harder to get back into the swing of things. We can combat this by keeping  ourselves challenged and stimulated. Stay on task by taking it one day at a time, use a planner to create a to-do list for the activities for that day. Focus on doing your homework, studying, and completing projects for due-dates in the near future. But also set time aside and reward yourself for your hard work. Time management doesn’t only apply to your curriculars; organize time with your friends that won’t interfere with your school work.

EDITORIAL: Keeping HHS Clean is a Job for All of Us

Recently, we’ve noticed more garbage around the school.  This is neither welcomed nor necessary. We have garbage cans always within a short walk.

If you have garbage, take the extra steps to get it into a can. If your friend just dumps on our school, please do your part and remind them that this is our place too. Let’s just keep garbage off the floor.

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Look how close this is to an actual garbage can. Comets are better than this.

If each of us commits to taking care of our own garbage, and recyclables HHS will be significantly cleaner; if we also encourage others not to trash up our school, our school pride will benefit.

 

May/June Schedule Reviewed

By Kimberly Pena

As the end of the school year approaches and things begin to come to a close end. In May and June, there are several important dates that students and staff should know.

Here is a quick look at the main schedule for the rest of the school year:

May 2 to May 13– AP Exams held throughout the week. Library may be closed.

May 07– SAT Testing 8 a.m.

May 19th– Prom 6 p.m.

May 25 and 26– Bio Testing – delayed opening at 10:45 a.m. for students not taking biology.

May 27 to May 31– Off from school for Memorial Day Weekend, enjoy the two extra days!

June 03– Off from school, enjoy the three day weekend!

June 04– SAT Testing 8 a.m.

June 09– Scholarship Night 7 p.m.

June 10– Off from school, enjoy the three day weekend!

June 11– ACT Testing 8 am

June 14– Final exams begin, you’re almost there! Make sure to talk to your teachers to see if you’re exempt or not, and study.

June 15– Senior Sports Banquet 7 p.m.

June 23– 2015 Graduation Ceremony 5 p.m.

Student Journal: Attending 49th Annual National Keystone Conference

By Kimberly Peña

(Every once in awhile, we will publish an account of student’s personal experience in an academic or special event setting. These “journal entries” are designed to allow others a “sneak peek” into the academic lives we live at HHS.)

Every year, thousands of teenagers from all over the country get together for a memorable experience that serves as a well-deserved reward for hundreds of hours of hard volunteer work.

These teens are a part of Keystone, a youth volunteer group run through the non-profit organization of the Boys and Girls Club of America.

Through Keystone, teenagers ranging from age 14 to 18 have the opportunity to gain valuable life experiences and shape their values while helping others, making lifelong friends, and having an outstanding experience to go on their college application.

The national Keystone conference allows all of these teens to come together, share ideas, step out of their comfort zone, and learn how to work with people from different walks of life.

We learn new ways to fundraise, we discuss contemporary issues and ways to contribute to the club to the best of our abilities. We go to daily workshops with guest and celebrity speakers whose goals are to impact at least one kid in order to get them to live up to the best of their potential.

This year the conference was held in Dallas Texas with over 2,800 Keystoners and advisors staying at the Dallas Omni, and I was there.

The following is a diary-style account of my experiences at  this year’s conferences.

March 16 – First day in Texas and it was a success. Went out to eat and the food is amazing. Portions were the size of my head but it was incredible.

Took a while to actually realize I’m in Dallas. The city is so big, but I feel like I’m still home. Went to the Reunion Tower just a couple blocks away from the hotel we’re staying in, the Dallas Omni.

This hotel is over 60 stories with about 700 floors from what I remember, and the view from high up was one of the scariest things ever. It was just in a giant dome in the sky and I only thought of falling.

Being way up was extremely nerve racking and got even worse when I stepped outside, but in the end it was worth it. The view was immensely beautiful and I ended my day taking a risk, first of many of the trip.

March 17 – First official day of the Keystone Conference! Up by 6:30 a.m. to go and get breakfast to be back in the Omni by 8 a.m.  ready for General Sessions.

General Sessions is when over 2,800 Keystoners get together to start or end their day in order to be inspired and get energized. The purpose is to remind everyone of the hard work they’ve done over the last year to get into this room.

This year’s opening general session had the national advisor speaking, the president of Keystone and other important figures in the organization. After that we went off into our own hand picked sessions and I went to one being hosted by the Keystone from the FBR Branch in Greater Washington DC.

The session revolved around civic issues and how we as teens would like to change things.

We also visited the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza in Dallas, the place from which Lee Harvey Oswald assassinated President John F. Kennedy in the early 1960s.

This historic place was also walking distance from the hotel. Being where Oswald executed a U.S. President was such an eerie feeling; we could look right out the window and see where JFK was assassinated.

Just a few feet from the grassy knoll there was an “X”in the middle of the street to mark the moment of impact. People just drive over that tragic marker, which made me question if they felt the way I did.

But the trip wasn’t all tragedy and mourning.

My favorite part was dressing up for St Patrick’s Day. My fellow Keystoner and friend, Robert, and I decided to get our group to dress up for the theme “The Luck of the Keystone”. We got everyone to wear green tie-dye shirts, while the girls wore black leggings with green knee high socks and the boys wore bow ties and suspenders. It looks comical but so cute and we won a costume contest.

March 18 – Day 2, when things really get rolling. Being on the press pass team (a team about 50 students who cover the event), I had to report on the general session in a different light. I had to take away any bias and look at it as a journalist.

Among my duties, I had to correctly record the names of the speakers, what they were doing, and add nothing more or nothing less. Although I couldn’t be biased then, since this is a journal,  I kind of can be now. My favorite portion was Frank Waln and the Samson Brothers, a group of three men who come from different Native American tribes. It was my favorite aspect of the general session because he mentioned how together as the current generation we can come together and make a positive change in this world. We can impact lives, change politics, change civil issues and make life better for ourselves and for the generations to come. It was pretty cool because while Frank rapped, the Samson Brothers danced in traditional Native American garbs. I can continue in about what we did but just for one day I can easily write a whole page.

March 19 – Last day; Bittersweet knowing it’s my last day of conference. Made several good friends from all over the country, three specifically from the AFB in Las Vegas Nevada and another from Pheonix. It’s during moments like these that you wish there were more dates in the year to get everyone together so you can see them again. Be able to dance again, speak again and just see how everyone’s doing. Yeah we have each other’s numbers now, and follow each other on social media but the anxiety of waiting to see someone an entire year is quite insane. I won’t be seeing these keystoners until March 3rd of next year in Chicago, and I can only hope! Anyway, we ended the last day of conference at Six Flags Over Texas just a short ride into Arlington. I actually learned that the name was given to it because at some point six countries owned the land that is now Texas.

March 20 – Conference finally over and I’m finally home. Didn’t get the chance to write this down at night like I did the others because I was so exhausted. All the hours of poor sleep finally catch up to you. Said goodbye to all the friends I made. Took a couple selfies with them and I had one last Texan styled breakfast. I miss it all already. Texas was very good to me. The food, the atmosphere, the monuments and the buildings, and the kids from all over the globe made it one hundred times better. We made plans to work with some clubs in the Northeast so hopefully plans fall through. I’m going to bed incredibly early to try and catch up on some sleep. Back to school now, back to track practice and back to regular life. Time for the new key stoning year in order to be able to do it all again next year. Chicago, I’m coming for you.

Year of the Teen Opening Session

Dallas Omni from the Dallas Observation deck

Dallas Omni Hotel from the top Dallas Observation Tower, approximately 470 ft up.

Luck of The Keystone themed day

Luck of the Keystone, first day of conference. We also won the costume contest and got little leprechaun rubber duckies.

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Screenshot from Keystone live social feed. When a photo was posted with the hashtag 2k6TEEN, hundreds of photos were shown during and after general sessions and festivities.

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Keystone Wolfpack of the Boys and Girls Club of Lodi in the Geo Deck at the top of the Observation Tower.

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First meal in Dallas after landing that day, running on four hours of sleep or less.

Giannina Garcia

Giannina Garcia, former Keystone president and senior at the Academies at Englewood riding the mechanical bull at the Omni.

Athletic Letter of Intent Roundup

The HHS Athletic Department has published announcement of recent signings of letters of intent from our senior class. Here they are:

HHS Senior Amarys Berry Signs Letter of Intent to Compete in Track and Field

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Amarys Berry
HHS Senior Amarys Berry Signing her letter of intent to compete in Track an Field at St. John’s University.
She is flanked by her sister Natania Sills and her Mother Adrienne Berry.

 

HHS Senior Dante Washington Signs Letter of Intent to Play Football

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Dante Washington
HHS Senior Dante Washington signing his letter of intent to play Football at Gallaudet University in Washington D.C.
He is flanked by Dr. Candi Reed, Bergen County Special Services Supervisor of Programs for the Deaf, and his Mother Chisa Washington.

 

HHS Senior Serena Martinez Signs Letter of Intent to Compete in Track and Field

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Serena Martinez
HHS Senior Serena Martinez signing her letter of intent to compete in Track and Field  at the University of Alabama Birmingham.
She is pictured with her Mother Selina, Brother Robert, Sister Melany and Father Ramon Martinez.
HHS Senior Jaimie Parisi Signs Letter of Intent to Play Softball

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Jaimie Parisi
HHS Senior Jaimie Parisi Softball Player Signing her Letter of Intent to Play Softball at Felician University.
She is flanked by Father James and Mother Joni Parisi.

 

Student Profile: Nicholas Edis

By Iris Ocasio

HHS is admired for many things including the drama program. Often times, students cannot wait to get to HHS to begin their acting career and pursue their passions. However, many students like Nicholas Edis, junior, have had acting experience before high school.

Nicholas Edis began acting in the 4th grade where his first production was “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” starring as Mike Teavee. Edis claims that the decision to begin acting was partially his and partially motivation from his mother. Before he began acting, he was a member of chorus which has stuck with him throughout his high school career. Then, graduating from Maywood Avenue School he recognized that acting was a hobby that he wanted to be relevant in his future.

During his sophomore year, Edis landed the role of Nicky, one of the major characters in the Avenue Q production. The fact that the play was ambitious, he states that there was an “overwhelming amount of work” to get done. However, Edis explains that he “likes challenges and enjoyed the difficulty that the puppets brought and with the participation of other talented actors, they were able to pull off the show”.

The drama program requires immense dedication, but when the final product has been pieced to perfection, the sense of gratification is indescribable. Despite the time that he commits to his acting, Nicholas still manages to excel academically as an honors student.

He explains that “school is my first priority and my parents truly remind me of that”.

In addition to being an honors student, Edis also plays soccer in his town actively.

Next year, as a senior, Nicholas hopes to acquire the lead role of Dewey in the 2017 production of School of Rock. Beyond high school, he plans to continue acting in the community as a hobby. Edis’ major goal is to be a professional actor either on broadway or in films. He explains that “I love singing, but I want to act no matter what the opportunity is”.

When Nicholas began acting, he claims to have had significant stage fright, and he “had to get accustomed to performing in front of people.”  Edis states that for those who are afraid to pursue performing “they should be themselves, the great thing about acting is that the people around you share the same goal and that is to put on an exceptional show”. Discovering what you love to do as a teenager, is difficult, but once you surmount your fear, you will be able to devote yourself to your passion.

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