Students sing at Heritage Idol

Heritage Idol premiered on the 27th of April featuring several students who competed against each other to win the title of Heritage Idol.

The final winner Kelsey Harry ’18 won after singing “Stand By You” by Rachel Platten.

Mr. Andrew Fischer wanted to do Heritage Idol for a few years and introduced the idea of having the competition to Mr. Kevin Keena and Mrs. Jennifer Gustafson, who were both judges for the show. All three teachers have experience with singing outside of school and offered constructional criticism and praise to students after they sang.

“When Mr. Fischer first talked to me about Heritage Idol I was interested instantly,” says Keena, “as long as I get to be Simon.”

Heritage Idol is the perfect opportunity for aspiring vocalists to show off in front of an audience, and the audience, however small, was extremely supportive to the students who did choose to sing.

“I will be looking for preparation final, diction, good tone quality, and stage presence. I’m looking for someone who can present themselves as a pop star,”  says Fischer.

Because Harry won the competition she will be receiving time to record at a professional recording studio to better develop her sound as an individual artist.

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Chemistry students get groovy with tie dye

 

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A chemistry student soaks her t-shirt in chemical fixer so that the die sets in.

  

Tie Dying is a practice that has been embraced ever since the hippy era in the 1960’s, but for Heritage High school chemists it is also a very hands-on way to learn a few concepts.

“We’ve been doing the tie dye lab in the Science department for several years. It is the most expensive lab the department conducts but it’s a great way to end the year with a little creativity, and it also reminds students that chemistry is at work all the time,” says chemistry teacher Corey Brueckner.

Students pre-soak clothing in Soda Ash fixer solution which allows the fiber reactive dyes to work at room temperature. These fiber reactive dyes attach to the cellulose fibers in white cotton using a covalent (electron sharing) bond. The molecules in the die carry “chromophore” which allows for the fabric to absorb and reflect varying spectra of light.

“I thought tie dying was the best practical lab we’ve done all year because it reminded me that even simple activities like dying clothes take complex chemical reactions,” says Lexi Fischel ’17.

Students are allowed a lot of creative freedom, as they can dye any fabric that will take the colors and can choose from any color combination

“I’ve seen people die all sorts of things, from socks to white comforters. It’s always fun to see how creative people can get with it,” says Brueckner.

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Another student ties rubber bands around her t-shirt to create a pattern.

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College Admission Fees Deter Students

    At this point in the year, most schools have sent out their acceptance and rejection letters, and seniors have solidified their plans. Many selective colleges report another record year for applications according to markerplace.org. This can only mean that they rejected more students. But not before collecting their application fees.

Many students feel as if they should apply to multiple schools. They are told to apply to their “safety schools” to their “match school” and to their “dream school,” however this can be an expensive proposition as each application can cost up to $70.

“I have seen students get into their dream schools but are put on the waiting lists to get into their safety school so I think it is important to at least apply to your top schools because you never know,” says Mrs. Lisa Zolle, Science teacher.

In some cases application costs can close some doors that would otherwise be open, however they do serve an important purpose.

“When I see that a school has lower acceptance rate, I automatically want to try to get into that school because it seems more selective,” says Lindsay Resizer ’17.

With this mentality, higher application rates means more selectivity, ultimately heightening the university’s image while funding the application process.

   Ultimately completing an application is daunting as more and more students are competing for a spot at their dream school.

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Rosales takes flight

Despite how some students may feel about university life, it’s relatively safe to say that there will be room for most Heritage graduates to make mistakes next year. However, for senior Julio Rosales the stakes are much higher.

Despite being awarded the prestigious Daniel’s Fund Scholarship and having the opportunity to attend most any college he desired, Julio decided instead to enroll in the United State Air Force Academy Preparatory School.

“I know that it’s all or nothing, but I feel like it’s something that I have to do,” remarks Rosales. “I’ve wanted this my entire life.”

The prep school is meant as a transition between high school and Air Force life. It’s organized to sort out who is and who isn’t fit for military life. This decision is risky for Julio, because one in four who enter into the program either can’t handle it or are not admitted into the Academy.

“I hear it’s pretty brutal, but I’m confident I’ll succeed,” says Rosales.

Julio’s rigorous basic training and education for the Air Force will start July 20th of this year and will last for ten months.

“Julio’s a unique guy,” says friend of Rosales, Max Milliman. “I know he’s got so much to offer in a place like the air force.”

Once Julio begins his program at the academy, he will be considered a reserve airman and will be earning an income from the military. His path of choice may be more like throwing himself in the deep end than pursuing normal higher education, but Julio hopes that this is the first step on an incredibly fulfilling journey.

“Eventually, I’d like to study to become an astronaut,” says Rosales. “I know it seems far-fetched, but what’s the point if I don’t give it my all?”

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Reuter Pursues Possible Priesthood

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Reuter traveled to the Vatican City over spring break for Easter. This trip help solidify his decision to travel to Spain for a year.

This coming school year, Erik Reuter ’16 will be taking a gap year and living in Spain. But unlike other students taking time off, Reuter is taking this time to make a huge decision, whether or not to join the priesthood.

   Reuter was raised as a Catholic from the his birth, so faith is fundamental to him.

   This has permeated to very recently when he traveled to Rome over spring break to attend Easter Sunday in The Vatican City.

   “Over the trip to Rome, I really solidified the choice to go to Spain. We stayed with one disciple over there, much like I would be doing in Spain. It was very peaceful and it was the peace that made me want to go,” says Reuter.

   Reuter is scheduled to leave around August 20 for Madrid. He will be staying with a group called the Disciples of the Heart of Jesus and Mary.

   “The main purpose of the year is to live with a community of priests and through living with them discern whether or not I would want to become a priest myself,” says Reuter. “I’ve always felt awe struck towards religious life. I really want to take a year and make sure I’m making the right decision.”

   He is going to Spain for this adventure to further immerse himself in Spanish culture. His family has hosted students from Spain in the past and he has taken Spanish language classes from a very young age. He will take classes at a university over there to improve his Spanish and engage in some philosophy classes later on.

   With the support of friends and family, Reuter is excited to take on this 10 month journey.

   “I think it’s really cool that he’s following his dreams, and I really do hope he finds what he’s looking for,” says Jake Kisabeth ’16, a good friend to Reuter.

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Comic Sans: Our greatest fight

 

They didn’t know what they had done. How could they have? Developing a simple, whimsical font for comic-book-style speech bubbles in 1994 must have seemed the most benign thing in the world to a few Microsoft employees. But unbeknownst to those tragic figures, their fateful actions would soon evolve into the most unspeakable mistake of our modern times.

Two words: Comic Sans.

Initially, Comic Sans was used for things like children’s literature, Beanie Babies, and childish video games. Harmless, yes: that’s what the world thought at first. Then the misuses started popping up. Somewhere along the line, everyday people acquired the notion that just because they had access to a variety of typography choices, somehow they were granted the God-given right to exercise individuality in modern communication. But every font contains a role and persona in and of itself.

Does Times New Roman invoke an attitude of lightheartedness? No, that’s absurd. Does Corsiva feel right printed on merchandise for the NRA? No, don’t be ridiculous. .

Notice the disrespect in using comic sans with the phrase “Rest in peace”.

Try not to cringe at the cruelty in putting comic sans with “This is an eviction notice”.

And must I even point out the inherently shocking nature of the words.

BEWARE LION in comic sans?

In 1999, when the movement “Ban Comic Sans” was founded by modern day heroes Dave and Holly Crumb, the world laughed. Dismissive hands waved away hard truths in place of preference for blissful indifference for the cultural atrocity that was taking hold. For many, regret seized hearts and it now seems too late to reverse our choices. But we mustn’t falter; there is hope.

The good news is that the collective sin of the world’s continual use this blasphemous typography doesn’t have to be the end for us. We have the power to inform the world (through messages typed in appropriately selected lettering). Day by day, citizen by citizen, we must push on without rest until a collective cultural awakening takes center on the world stage. No longer will we sit in silence as the people around us spit sentiments like “I’m font-blind, I see the words not the typography”. Ignorance, pure and simple.

Guidelines must be taught for when to use and when not to use certain fonts. Not everyone has an infinite level of artistic liberty when exercising said liberty encroaches upon the safety and sanity of society.

However, as for the fate of Comic Sans, we must commence today its extermination by having a zero tolerance policy for Comic Sans. Extreme, maybe, but we know from our mistakes that once a disease infects even a microbe of the population, there can be no stopping the virus.

Fight it. Fight it in your homes, in your schools, in your cities and in your nations. Begin the revolution, put an end to the oppression.

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Students speak on Safe2Tell

A student hotline is gaining attention from not only teens, but parents and administration. Safe2Tell was introduced as a tip-line usable by any student at Heritage.

Safe2Tell was created due to the knowledge that students’ carry that parents or administration may not know. Safe2Tell contains a “Student Lounge” that contains information on how to receive help or help others along the topics of mental health, drugs, and bullying. This gives students a way to receive information while staying anonymous.

Safe2Tell has been gaining more attention due to the increased usage among students concerning numerous issues. Each conflict has been resolved in a matter of hours, taking into account the safety of students as well as others.

However, there are still mixed feelings among students about Safe2Tell.

“I think it’s useful, but only if you’re using it for good,” says Ashlea Trowbridge ’16.

While most agree with Trowbridge, others worry that with this power to tell, people will abuse this tip-line.

“It’s helpful because it really is a way for people to safely tell someone about issues they’re having, like suicide. I don’t really see any harm in Safe2Tell besides the fact that people can abuse it,” says Gwynn Tipton ’16.

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This hotline allows for students to report issues while staying completely anonymous. Safe2Tell takes no personal information from the reporter.

After an anonymous tip is reported, a trained communications officer collects the information and assigns the case to either a school and/or the police, according to safe2tell.org.

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New Times, New Curiculum

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English classes use many types of literature to express history and themes to students. Predominantly, teachers promote books that are either classics, books with inequality or both. The most commonly taught a topic is racism, which is an essential topic to cover. So much can be taught as far as racism goes, the only problem with some of this teaching, is with the same books brought up and same general topics covered, so much isn’t taught. The Holocaust is constantly covered, which is of much importance, but similar and worse events are missed or only briefly covered. Gender inequality is briefly mentioned, if mentioned at all.

This is frustrating in the sense that students are only getting a standard capsule of information that is often repeated and never looked at in-depth because students are trained with the basic events and don’t often both to look further.

For example, students could cover more topics of inequality, gender inequality, sexual orientation inequality, or history of Africa and it’s wars. So much is being missed that in this day and age needs to be covered too.

Many teachers are doing well in showing these variety of topics, while some don’t. It would help a lot if curriculum required these topics so all students could cover these topics as well.

Students would likely benefit more from less of the same events, and more of different similar events. A broader sense of topics than just racism inequality is vital as well, because this is not just a one time event in our history, it hides in different ways students aren’t always aware of shortening their knowledge.

It maybe about time teachers and districts look back over the curriculum because what they currently have is vital to students knowledge, but what they may be missing is vital to filling that knowledge gap. By taking a look a more broad topics that what is familiar in the curriculum students will have access to a deeper worldview.  

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Alpine Club Elevates MAD Week

   During MAD Week, a tremendous amount of effort goes into raising money for the student selected cause. Whether it be a volleyball tournament, a raffle or a head shaving fundraiser, there are always multiple ways that students can help support MAD Week. On the weekend of May 7, there was another event to help raise money: the Alpine Club sponsored MAD Week hike.

   On Saturday, May 7, the Alpine club reached the summit of Bergen Peak, a 9.4 mile round trip standing at 9,708 feet. Located North East of the Mount Evans wilderness, the club left at 7 a.m. and returned around 5 p.m. The hike itself will took around six or seven hours, round trip.

   “I thought it would be a wonderful way for the Alpine Club to hike and raise money for a good cause at the same time,” says club sponsor Mr. Guy Warren. “Truly a win-win.”

   In order to raise money, the club members have a sponsorship form. Each member who plans on participating in the hike takes the form around to parents, family, friends and teachers to pledge money towards their hike. The amount of money pledged by each sponsor is one total pledge they give to the hiker and not given for every vertical foot that the hiker climbs. The club ended up raising $173.00, which was doubled by the Anschutz Foundation to come to a total of $346.00.

   “This hike is a unique way of fundraising because it is completely separate from the other activities. We as a club are individually contributing to MAD Week,” says Ellen Best ’16.

   Besides a monetary focus, the hikers will get to add 3,000 vertical feet to their grand totals as well as explore new parts of Colorado.

“Hiking allows one to push through boundaries both physically and emotionally, and one understands that it’s OK not to not make the summit if conditions don’t allow,” says Warren.

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Including the Bergen Peak hike, the Alpine Club has two more hikes to go on. In total, they will have gone on thirteen hikes by the end of this school year.

  

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Final stretch for boys’ relay team

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Mitchell Johnson ’16 sprints to finish at the Liberty Bell. The Liberty Bell meet is considered across the state as one of the biggest track events of the year.

   After several consecutive years of success in Heritage’s male relay teams, the tradition has been upkept by four of the track team’s finest athletes.

The 4×4  team is led by three senior veterans on the squad: Jeremy Romero, Mitchell Johnson, and Thomas Ornelas. All three boast impressive careers during their time at Heritage, and, joined by a newcomer, have been a force to be reckoned with in league competition.

Joe Weigang, in his second year running track, has made a seamless jump to varsity as the final piece of the squad. Weigang hasn’t been the first surprise this season; Romero made the jump from mostly distance events all of the sudden to a race that has typically demanded talented sprinters.

“It took some getting used to with the transition from the mile run, but I’m very proud with what I’ve done up to this point. In the end, I’m confident in my skills on the track in any setting, whether it’s distance or sprints, I’m there to compete above all else,” says Romero.

With a time of 3:28.51 they are positioned at ninth in state entering the league championships this Saturday, and they are hoping to to lower their time even more before entering the state meet.

“We can definitely hit 3:24, but we’re really pushing for 3:22 this weekend,” says Johnson.

He attributes a lot of their success to the coaching change in the off-season.

“Our new coach, Brant Gilbert, has done a great job pushing us to be better throughout the year. He has really prepared us to be a state level relay team,” says Johnson.

The group’s plans are to make one last bump in rankings before finally getting the chance to represent Heritage in yet another state meet, and carry on the tradition of the school’s dominant relay performances of the past.

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