At Monday night’s School Committee meeting a group of students were recognized and presented with achievement awards.
Senior Alyssa Collins was presented with the Massachusetts Association of Superintendents’ Academic Award by Superintendent John Retchless. Retchless asked Collins to talk about her academics present and future. She said she participates in band and theater guild. Collins would like to attend Brown University to study psychology. She is one of the top students in the senior class.
Senior Alexandra Pigeon was awarded the Massachusetts Secondary School Administrators’ Association Student Achievement Principals’ Award by RHS Principal Alan Cron. Dr. Cron talked about Pigeon’s excellent academic record and her involvement in sports and extracurricular activities. Pigeon says that she is honored to have been recognized by Dr. Cron for her achievements. She has applied to several colleges and would like to major in English, writing or Journalism. Pigeon is a co-editor of the Veritas, the high school newspaper and is also one of the top two students in the senior class.
The Rockland High School Cheerleaders were also recognized for winning the State Championship in Division 4.
Those who attend the Theater Guild’s first production of the year this weekend will be taken to Neverland along with the cast of Peter Pan. The show will go on at 7:30 pm on Friday and Saturday nights, Dec. 12 and 13, and at 1 pm on Sunday afternoon, Dec.14, in the RHS Auditorium.
Theater Guild director, Jennifer Hartnett says that her large cast is ready.
Last night’s two dress rehearsals featured two different casts made up of Theater Guild members who changed roles, as they will in the upcoming performances this weekend.
Peter Pan will be played by Stephanie Blaney and Sophie McLellan; Alyssa Collins and Jurnee Dunn will share the role of Tiger Lily; PJ Butler and Leah DeCecco will play Captain Hook; Chris Landy and Danielle Hill will be Smee; and Ella Engle and Genesis Rojas will share the role of Wendy.
Tickets can be purchased on showtix4u.com for $7 in advance and $10 at the door.
For a preview of the show go to the Veritas’ Club/Activities page.
The Rockland girls basketball team hosted their first scrimmage Monday, but it was no South Shore League foe, or one in the same hemisphere for that matter. The team they played is known as the Aussie Travelers, a high school team from Australia who makes a two-week journey to the United States bi-annually.
This time around, the travelers are touring Massachusetts and New York before heading out to Los Angeles.
“We try to visit a new part of America every time,” Aussie head coach Rad Radan said. “Last time we went to Texas and before that it was Seattle and the great northwest.”
The girls (and Aussie boys team that travels with them) have had quite the busy schedule since coming across the world. They toured Syracuse University before playing Rome (N.Y.) High School and also toured World-Famous Fenway Park before heading down to Rockland.
For their time in Massachusetts, the Aussies have been staying in Cohasset thanks to a family that lived in Australia before moving to Massachusetts.
“We come to experience a different culture,” Radan said, “also just to play basketball; the kids love basketball, and it can open them up to a new culture.”
The Aussies will be on the road to Los Angeles when they leave Massachusetts. They will visit Disneyland out there as well as visiting the Staples Center for a Lakers game and Pauley Pavilion to see UCLA.
“We have had a lot of fun over here,” Radan added, “although our schedule doesn’t allow for much sleep!”
As for the game, it was a 5-quarter scrimmage that the Lady Dogs unofficially won 59-40. The key to Rockland’s success was their suffocating full-court press and their basket penetration and overall aggressive play.
The Rockland girls open their season on Friday, December 12th, at North Quincy High School.
“We are all immigrants,” says Susan Patton, Alternative Program Director at Rockland High School.
Mrs. Patton along with English teacher, Kendra Donovan and their students in the Transitions class are creating a project called Faces of Rockland.
The project, supported by a grant from the Rockland Education Foundation, is “dedicated to exploring the history of Rockland, and the journeys that brought its residents here,” according to the group’s Facebook page.
Their discoveries will be going into a book and documentary to be published in the spring.
The producers are searching for Rockland residents who have immigrated to the town in the past three generations who are willing to share their stories or the stories of their relatives.
“This would be for those families that can trace their heritage back to coming to this country, whether one, two, or three generations ago, and know the story of their arrival,” explains Mrs. Patton.
The Transitions class would like to interview fifteen or more people in the upcoming weeks.
If you are interested in the project or know someone who would be willing to be interviewed, contact Mrs. Patton at Rockland High School at firstname.lastname@example.org or go to their website for more information.
by Cameron Stuart, Veritas Sports Editor
The Rockland Bulldogs football team renewed their Thanksgiving rivalry with the East Bridgewater Vikings on Thursday morning. The game was a hard-fought one that came down to the final minutes although the 29-12 final score wouldn’t indicate it. The Vikings scored twice in the final 10 minutes to fend off the Bulldogs for their seventh straight Thanksgiving Day victory.
East Bridgewater (9-2, 6-2 SSL) scored midway through the second quarter, a 45-yard pass play from Ryan Graham to Jake Peterson, to break the scoreless tie. Rockland (6-5, 5-3 SSL) answered on the next drive when Joe Reardon completed a 46-yard pass to Liam Ball to set the Bulldogs up at the 2 yard line. On the next play, Joe Reardon kept it himself and ran in the 2-yard touchdown but then was unable to punch in the 2-point conversion, leaving East Bridgewater with a 7-6 lead at the half.
An interception by the Vikings’ Brandon Hunter set up East Bridgewater in Rockland territory before junior running back Jared Vargas scored on a 16-yard touchdown run, making it 14-6. Once again, Joe Reardon had the answer, scoring again on a 12-yard run for his second touchdown in his last football game, cutting the Viking lead to two at 14-12. After a personal foul kept the next Viking drive alive on a fourth down play, quarterback Ryan Graham leaped over the Rockland defense at the 1-yard line to score, extending East Bridgewater’s lead to 21-12.
Owen Harrington capped the scoring in this game, punching in a 6-yard touchdown with just over two minutes left in the game. The Vikings lined up for a conventional point-after attempt before quarterback and ball-holder Ryan Graham rolled out and hit Connor Gavin with a 2-point completion, making the final score a 29-12 East Bridgewater victory.
Coach Brian Kelliher congratulated his senior players with the following on Twitter:
“Thank you seniors for last 3 years! You are a great group of kids. I have learned a great deal from each of you.”
Rockland High School’s art and literary magazine, Images, recently debuted a brand new website. Be sure to check out their November webzine that features literature and artwork with the theme, hope and change.
To view this month’s issue on the Images website click here.
RHS seniors Leshon Crawford and John Kamande participated in their second straight ‘Turkey Toss” hosted by Kiss 108 FM in the parking lot of the Meadow Glen Mall in Medford. The storyline was the same as last year: gloomy. The weather, the location, and performance all complied with this.
As Kamande was throwing, the turkey slipped form his hands, creating a “knuckle ball” effect and making for a near impossible catch for Crawford. No one can blame Kamande for the miscue, however, due to the slight rainfall, the 7 AM start, and the fact that the turkey was upwards of 30 pounds.
Whether in jubilation or in disappointment, the boys represented Rockland High in a highly publicized event, one that was broadcast live on the radio, and represented the school very well as they always do. The Turkey Toss consists of two athletes (usually football players) from 8 schools, selected by the station that are considered honorable in the high school football ranks, making it even more special that Rockland has been invited the past two years.
Like on the gridiron, the boys from Everett High School dominate this event, winning the event for the fourth straight year.
Video of Leshon Crawford’s drop was recorded by Kristen Walsh who accompanied Crawford and Kamande to the Meadow Glen Mall.
The Rockland High School cheerleaders brought home the Division 4 State Championship Cheering trophy on Sunday, Nov. 23.
The girls competed at Lowell High School and won by 7/10ths of a point over second place Ipswich High School. Rockland’s routine was not perfect but the degree of difficulty they challenged themselves with won them the championship.
Coaches are Jeanine Reardon, Kim Reardon, Kim Daly and Steph Schneider.
The seniors made it a two year Powder Puff sweep with a 20-14 win Friday night. Led by quarterback Brianna Starkey, the Class of 2015 beat the juniors in a close game thanks to two touchdowns and a 2 point conversion by Natalie Ellard and one touchdown by Lauren Farrell. The juniors played well behind QB Kyra Rose who also had one touchdown along with Kylie McKenna. They had the ball in the red zone as time expired but could not get across the goal line.
Rockland’s food service director, Adele Leonard, was presented with two major awards from Chartwell’s Food Service at a celebration held in the lecture hall on Nov. 10.
Leonard is in charge of the food service for Rockland’s three elementary schools, Memorial Park, Esten, and Jefferson, along with the Rogers Middle School, and our high school.
The first award is the New England Salaried Associate of the Year Award. The second award is the National Salaried Associates Award.
To read more about Leonard go to Veritas News
The video was produced by Journalism students in the WRPS studio.
Anchors – Cam Stuart and Brian Cohen
Camera Operators – Tim Sullivan, Mekenzie Levesque and Jurnee Dunn.
Director – Matt O’Brien
CG Coordinator – Sean Fitzgerald
Talent Coordinator – Mike Leavitt
Sound – Jason Golemme
Meteorologist – Ryan Palmer
The Rockland Lady Dogs soccer team will play in the south sectional semi-finals at Norwell against Carver. The girls are 1-1 against their South Shore League rivals and look forward to kick-off at 6 pm tonight. The winner will advance to the South Finals and play East Bridgewater which won its semi-final game. This is the girls’ second straight appearance in a sectional semi-final and they hope last year’s experience will give them the edge to advance this year.
The girls made it to the semi-finals by beating Hull 1-0 in a great game last Friday in Rockland.
The Rockland offense led by seniors Danielle Whitcher, Julia Matson and Kallie Morss dominated midfield for the Lady Dogs. Senior Lauren Farrell scored the game’s lone goal with senior Natalie Ellard’s assist while senior Alex Pigeon led the defense to help senior goalie, Molly McDonough gain her third tournament shut-out.
It was a true team effort and now it’s on to Norwell tonight. Let’s go girls!
After competing on Thursday, Nov. 6 in the South Shore League Cheerleading competition at Abington High School, the RHS cheerleaders are the 2014 League Champs. Scoring 94.85, it was one of the highest scores in several years for Rockland Cheer.
Coach Jeanine Reardon said, “I am so proud of these girls. Their effort and team work lead them to the top. Thanks to the parents, teachers, friends, and family who all came out tonight to support RHS Cheer. Our goal was met.”
Next up for the cheerleaders will be regional competition.
Haley Macray, Veritas Web & Features Editor
On Tuesday, November 4 members of the Rockland High School Student Government Council attended the Fall Southeastern Massachusetts Association of Student Councils (SEMASC) Conference at Middleboro High School. This year the conference theme was Premiering in Theaters: SEMASC Leaders.
RHS was represented by 20 students. The SGC members who attended the conference were chosen by their advisers and the Council’s President Katie DeLorey, Secretary Haley Macray, Treasurer Ryan Sugrue, and Publicity Coordinator Ashley Pezzella for outstanding work and dedication to SGC within the past few months.
Pezzella ran for SEMASC President, giving a speech in which she intertwined the magic of Disney with the appeal of SEMASC and student government. Following voting, it was announced that Pezzella was chosen to be President-Elect; she will take on the position of SEMASC President in the spring.
SGC members spent the day in workshops that focused on key aspects of student council such as spirit, teamwork, and planning.
“I always have a great time at any conference from going to the workshops and listening to the speakers,” said Sugrue. “I was proud to see that our freshmen had such a fun time and it made me remember when I was in their position seeing everything for the first time, and I have to say I am happy for them and can’t wait to see them grow as leaders.”
For SGC’s freshmen, Fall SEMASC was their first taste of what student council has to offer outside of the school level.
“I thought SEMASC was amazing! I’m so inspired and so glad I had the chance to go,” said freshman, Jillian Donahue. “It was so cool to talk to other people and see where they’re from.”
A big hit amongst SGC members was the guest speaker, Grant Baldwin.
“My favorite part about this SEMASC would have to be the keynote speaker,” said Rockland High School SEMASC Representative Adam Royle, “The speaker we had was a very nice guy and he gave a very good speech that inspired us all to do better. Not only that but he made all 800 of us laugh so hard at points.”
Sugrue also enjoyed Baldwin’s message.
“I liked his message about doing the little things in life to try to make a difference for someone, and I hope that I can take what I learned from him and apply it in school.”
Overall, the Fall SEMASC conference was a chance for both new and veteran SGC members to explore their leadership qualities and gain ideas and inspiration to bring back to RHS and the rest of the council.
The RHS boys and girls soccer teams will begin tournament play this week.
The boys are seeded 8th in Division 3 South, giving them the home game against Hanover. Both teams finished their seasons with identical 10-5-3 records. The game is scheduled for 2:30 pm on Monday, Nov. 3. As most know RHS Coach Rich MacAllister is a Hanover graduate so there will be plenty of incentive for the Bulldogs to come out strong against the rival Indians. The winner of this game will play the winner of #1 Medway vs.#16 Dennis-Yarmouth.
The girls will open up in Division 4 South traveling to Mass Maritime in Buzzard’s Bay for their first round game with Pope John Paul II. This game is scheduled for 6:30 pm on Tuesday, Nov. 4. The girls are seeded 11th in the tournament with a record of 10-5-3. Pope John Paul II is 6th with a record of 13-4-1. RHS Coach Greg Rowe is optimistic about the girls’ chances. The winner of this match will go on to play the winner of Nantucket vs. Hull on Nov. 7.
The girls volleyball team will play their second tournament match against Fairhaven on Tuesday at 6 pm in Fairhaven. The girls won their first match against Bristol County Aggie 3-0.
Good luck to all the tournament teams!
Cameron Stuart, Veritas Sports Editor
It’s one of the best match-ups on the slate for the opening round of the playoffs. Rockland will face-off against Cardinal Spellman on Friday, October 31st at 7 PM at Rockland’s Veterans Memorial Stadium.
Rockland comes in to the playoffs following a 32-8 Homecoming victory over the Carver Crusaders. While the Catholic Conference is competitive, the South Shore League Large School Division may be the most competitive league in all of Division 5. With Rockland the #3 seed in the South with a 5-2 record, the only two teams seeded higher are East Bridgewater (1) and Abington (2), both of whom play in the same division as the Bulldogs.
The Cardinal Spellman Cardinals stand at 3-3 going into the playoffs, including a 2-2 record in the tough Catholic Conference. Three years removed from their most recent Super Bowl appearance, long-time head coach Ron St. George leads his Cardinals to the postseason for the fifth consecutive year.
Senior Matt Anastasi has rushed for over 3,000 yards in his illustrious career in the old-school style of St. George. Even with proven game manager Mike Reale at quarterback, Spellman wears down opponents with a heavy ground game led by Anastasi and paved by star linemen John Edward Sagun and James Belton.
The ground game will be the biggest factor in Spellman’s game. Anastasi has been compared to the likes of East Bridgewater’s Jared Vargas and Abington’s Shawn Donovan, both of whom had multi-TD games against the Bulldogs.
The winner of this game will go on to play the winner of the Abington/Dover Sherborn game next weekend.
The girls volleyball team will travel to Dighton tonight to take on Bristol County Aggie in a first round tournament game.
Rockland with a record of 11-7 is seeded 11th in the Division 3 South tournament. Bristol is seeded 6th with a record of 13-5.
Coach Craig Johnson is optimistic about the girls’ chances despite Rockland’s 4-5 road record this season. Against common opponents, Randolph and South Shore VoTech, Rockland is 4-0 while Bristol is 3-1. Johnson says in tournament “it’s one game at a time” and he feels the girls are ready to play.
Good luck to the girls volleyball team.
Scenes from last Thursday’s Homecoming Rally were captured by Brian Cohen of the Journalism class and members of the Digital Media Class.
After you watch the video you may click on the following link for the Photo Gallery from the rally.
Haley Macray, Veritas Web & Features Editor
“If you have [a] sense of what you want to do, follow your passion,” says Joel Benjamin, a Boston fashion photographer who spoke at the 2014 Teen Talk: Fashion 101 panel.
The panel, facilitated by Jay Calderin, the founder and director of Boston Fashion Week, was held on Oct. 11 at the Boston Public Library. Benjamin, Calderin, and other industry leaders gathered to inform teens of what it takes to make it in the world of fashion.
The panel included:
- Gihan Amarasiriwardena, Co-founder & CEO, Ministry of Supply
- Joel Benjamin, Photographer, Joel Benjamin Photography
- Julie Desimone, Assistant Head of Wardrobe, Cirque du Soleil
- Jill Radsken, Fashion Writer, Boston Globe
- Magdalena Stokalska, Designer, Magdalena Stokalska Jewelry
- Tatiana Tejedor, Designer, and Co-owner of Caramelo Clothing Co.
Each of the panelists has ties to Boston, bringing an understanding of the local fashion and business scenes. This understanding made their stories even more relevant to their audience.
Amarasiriwardena got his start in the fashion industry at a young age. He described stories of looking at athletic equipment at the sporting goods store REI. He realized that the equipment and items were pricey and set out to make some of his own. He and his friends experimented with trash bags and used skiing trips as test drives for their designs.
“This was a hobby throughout most of high school,” he said.
After studying at MIT and the Sports Technology Institute, Amarasiriwardena set out to solve a problem that he had noticed.
“There wasn’t really stylish clothing that functioned well.”
With this in mind, Amarasiriwardena and his business partners created Ministry of Supply, a Boston based company designed to merge performance wear and fashion.
Amarasiriwardena continues to keep the Ministry of Supply business located in Boston – you can visit their shop on 299 Newbury Street, Boston, MA – because of the culture.
“I think Boston is a great place to start a business,” he says.
His advice for those looking to start a career in fashion?
“Don’t let lack of experience stop you from starting.”
This was a common theme throughout the panel.
“You don’t have to worry about your experience,” said Benjamin, “You should be using your inexperience to get experience.”
Benjamin’s success as a fashion photographer came at a crucial time in his life.
“I had one month left of money to live in New York,” he said. Luckily for him he took a job at Macy’s and his career flourished from there. Nowadays he says, “Everyday is like art class to me.”
To sum up his ideas and words of wisdom Benjamin advised the audience, “If you have an opportunity just take it.”
Desimone, a graduate of the School of Fashion Design, and the current Assistant Head of Wardrobe for the famous Cirque du Soleil, also spoke on the panel.
“I grew up drawing sketches in notebooks,” but she did not believe she could make a career out of her passion.
Desimone received a degree in Marketing and International Business from Fairfield University and has held other jobs in the world of fashion such as a buyer for Filene’s Basement and a manager at Neiman Marcus.
“It’s never too late,” says Desimone about following one’s dreams, “If you have that feeling just stick with it.”
At Cirque de Soleil Desimone is responsible for making fashionable garments that the performers can move and function in. She cites language barriers as one of very few struggles she finds with her job. Currently, she is doing her best to learn the languages of the performers in order to better accommodate their needs when it comes to their costumes. Other than that Desimone is quite pleased with what she gets to do for a living.
“About 3,000 people a night get to see what I do,” she says, “I cry everytime.”
Desimone advises budding fashionistas to show their face and stay humble in their fields.
“You’re an image, not just a person making a piece.”
Radsken, fashion writer for the Boston Globe, like most, struggled a bit with finding herself towards the beginning of her career.
“I couldn’t really figure out how to find my voice,” she says.
Once she found her groove Radsken immersed herself into her work. She explained that her job is to translate stories involving luxurious clothing and fashion to audiences that may not be able to relate to such expensive designs.
Radsken explained to the audience that details will set them apart and that they must be able to present themselves.
Rasken was able to talk about the industry in a different light than the other panelists. She explained that in order to be talked about in the media by journalists such as herself designers, business owners, and others must be willing to set themselves apart from the rest.
“New is always what we are looking for.”
She suggests that up and coming fashion industry members must “be willing to do everything” and “throw themselves into it.”
Stokalska, a jewelry designer, who’s work was featured on the television show The Carrie Diaries, discussed the importance of organization and planning. She sets goals for herself and researches how they can be achieved.
She also believes that those looking for a career in fashion should “take advantage of everything [they] have in [their] city.”
School of Fashion Design graduate, Tatiana Tejedor, recently opened her own menswear store, Carmelo, in Jamaica Plain and has been dedicating a good portion of her time to running her new business along with continuing to design for her own line but she has been enjoying the process. One of her favorite things is to be able to wake up every day and say “I am going to my store.”
Tejedor believe that feedback from customers helps you grow and that one should never “be afraid of failing.”
Overall the Teen Talk panelists stressed one common theme put nicely by Stokalska, “Don’t give up and just do it.”
On Friday night Oct. 24, RHS senior Brianna Starkey was crowned Ms. Rockland at half-time of the Homecoming game. Starkey was one of six senior girls nominated for the honor who also included: Nicole Cook, Katie DeLorey, Kara Penney, Alex Pigeon, and Danielle Whitcher. Congratulations to all the nominees and to Ms. Rockland, Brianna Starkey.
On Thursday night, Oct. 23, five seniors competed for the title of Mr. Rockland: Pearse McNally, Leshon Crawford, Andrew Frazer, Eddie Yeadon and Chris Landy. Judges Mr. Fred Damon, Ms. Amanda McDonough and Ms. Samantha Hoyo chose Chris Landy as the new Mr. Rockland. Photos of the event were taken by PJ Butler.
The girls soccer team qualified for tournament Monday night with a 3-0 win against Abington. It marked a perfect ending for Senior Night as the nine seniors on the team were honored before the game. Goals were scored by Lauren Farrell, Julia Matson and Natalie Ellard and Molly McDonough was perfect in net. With the win the team also claimed the Shoemaker’s Cup again this year.
Haley Macray, Veritas Web & Features Editor
On Sunday, Oct. 6, Boston Fashion Week, established in 1995 by Jay Calderin, officially began with the introduction of five new, up and coming fashion designers at the W Boston hotel.
The Launch is an annual event that showcases young designers, who each must be a recent graduate of a local fashion design program. This year Jeffrey Dickerson, Chynna Pope, Dominique Quinque, and Ty Sinnet represented the School of Fashion Design and Maryanne Meservey represented Mount Ida College.
As guests took their seats – all of which were front row thanks to the unique setup of the catwalk- they got a preview of what they were to expect with small videographies of each designer provided by Bearwalk films. Following the short films viewers were exposed to a show that had a little bit for everyone no matter their taste or personal style.
Dickerson’s collection was feminine and elegant featuring many rosettes and an extravagant black and silver ball gown as the finale look.
“I want someone to wear one of my designs and feel like their life is a performance,” he says in the Bearwalk video.
Pope showcased a collection that was as edgy as it was sophisticated with fluid white materials and leather. Her finale look was a black dress with a leather bustier top and a long pleated skirt.
“I am passionate about creating garments for the ever evolving characters in one’s life,” says Pope in the Bearwalk video, “My life is all about the adventure, and my designs are all about creating garments to wear for each of the events and each of the adventures.”
Quinque’s collection featured ensembles with intricate detailing and class. A standout piece was a silver-gray jacket and pant combo.
“What I really like to do is to incorporate intriguing details using unexpected techniques to create beauty that is subtle and has an element of surprise,” says Quinque in the video.
Sinnet showed pieces with bold prints and color, including a look made up of a flowing patterned skirt and crop top.
Sinnet loved fashion from a young age. “I remember when I was in fifth grade my grandfather got me a pair of high heeled shoes and it was like the best moment of my life,” she explains in the Bearwalk video, “They were completely impractical but I loved them.”
Meservey used her unique eco-friendly aesthetic and created a collection with punk influences made out of recycled clothing. Recycled dress shirts were a common textile used throughout her looks.
“I call my my line eco-punk,” says Meservey in the video, “It’s based off trends but something that’s more eternal than just a trend.”
Joining the impressive list of Launch alumni, these five young designers created a unique opening to Boston Fashion Week’s 20th anniversary.
To watch the Bearwalk videos please click here.
Mr. Chad Bigsby of the RHS English Department is encouraging students to submit artwork, videos and creative writing for the first issue of Images Magazine.
He says, “Images is now accepting submissions for our first web-zine of the year. We are looking for work that explores Hope & Change.”
The deadline for submissions is Nov.3.
Haley Macray, Veritas Web & Features Editor
Cambridge, MA – On Monday, September 29 the MIT Media Lab was filled with scientists, groundbreaking scientific discoveries, models, designers, and racks of avant garde garments. A strange combination one might think.
For the first time scientists and fashion designers joined together to create a one of a kind fashion show on the Descience runway as part of Pre-Boston Fashion Week. The event combined two worlds, science and fashion, unique in their own ways, into one show that supported both the arts and sciences alike.
The Descience contest was broken down into four parts: inspiration, connection, collaboration, and runway.
Inspiration: Before the end of January, a group of successful scientists summarized their work, research, and discoveries along with explaining why they wanted to participate in the contest. Designers submitted their applications.
Connection: In early February, after reading about the scientists, the designers made a list of the scientists they were most interested in working with. The selections are revealed to scientists.
Collaboration: Following the selection process, designers and scientists worked together combining their scientific studies and fashion forward ideas into one extraordinary look.
Runway: Finally, designs were shown at the MIT Media Lab on Monday. The 15 finalists were showcased in the runway portion of the contest and again at the reception that followed the event.
Team Cytocouture, made up of designer Carlos Villamil and scientist Dr. Laura Indolfi, were the runway winners. Their look was inspired by Indolfi’s research involving endothelial cells.
The main goal behind Indolfi’s research is to repair damaged blood vessels. These cells change based on the structure they grow and cling on. Together the team used this as their inspiration.
“Depending on how clothes adapt to different body size and types, different structures, they can also affect dramatically the behavior of the person wearing them,” says the team’s collaboration page on the Descience website, “Because of the shapes of the clothes you walk different, you also move, or sit, in a different way.”
One of the team’s looks was shown but together the two created a “clothing system” with multiple garments that could be transformed into different looks all of which were unisex.
“The majority of the clothes in the market are created to be gender specific and design options for each sex are stereotypical and limiting. We wanted to design garments that go beyond the gender classification and offer open wide possibilities for the wearer regardless their sex,” says the team, “This system will not only encourage creativity and experimentation but will also stimulate discussion about gender and fashion and how identity can be constructed through clothes that don’t classify or limit the version of yourself.”
Each of Cytocouture’s many interchangeable looks had common details throughout; they were made with a duo of a bold color and black and were combinations of tunics, skirts, and capes.
Two honorable mentions were also chosen, Team Quorum56 made up of scientist Tal Danino and designer Tatiana Tejedor and Team Interwoven made up of scientist Pedro Parraguez Ruiz and designer Margaret Jackson.
The People’s Choice winner was Team Orphacure made up of scientist Christopher Gibson and designer Candice Wu.
Overall, the Descience Runway show provided exposure to both scientific research and cutting edge fashion in a way that has not been seen before.
To check out the Descience website click here.
The first edition of the Veritas print edition will be on sale tomorrow.
Find out how each of the sports teams are doing, and what they expect for the rest of their seasons; also meet the new teachers at RHS, find out about the RHS student who has released a musical recording and get the details about clubs and activities going on throughout the school. Below is one of the feature stories from this month’s issue. Don’t miss it!
Is Fantasy Better Than Reality?
Brian Cohen, Veritas Staff
For seventeen weeks from September until January, students and faculty will have the stressful task of putting their best line-ups on the field as they will face off head-to-head with their peers.
What makes members of the RHS staff and student body want to participate in fantasy football?
Many enjoy the intense competition from week to week. Others play in leagues in which money is awarded to the winners.
Senior Natalie Ellard plays fantasy football because she “like[s] watching football and it is fun to play.” Ellard added that she “enjoys the competition the most.”
Senior Brandon Crawford enjoys fantasy football for different reasons.
Crawford says, “Fantasy football is a good way to stay updated with the NFL. It can also be a good way to make money.”
For the rest of Brian Cohen’s story, pick up the first edition of the Veritas print edition on sale Thursday, Oct. 16
Haley Macray Veritas Web & Features Editor
During last night’s Student Government Council meeting Head Advisor Kristen Walsh and Freshman Class Head Representative Sydney McKenna announced the winners of the freshman class elections.
The Class of 2018 officers will be:
Aiden Glennon, President
Danielle DeJesus, Vice President
Izzy Uong, Secretary
Ronan McNally, Treasurer
Jillian Donahue, Veritas Staff
Freshman elections took place today Oct. 8. Several candidates were in the running for each position: president, vice president, treasurer and secretary.
Being the freshman president is a big responsibility and most people think the perfect candidates are running for this position. Each candidate was asked why they would like to be President of the Class of 2018.
Macie Jones says, “I feel like I can make a change in the school and I think it would be fun to get more involved.”
“I am very excited to be running and I feel like it is a great experience to be one of the candidates. I am a little nervous that I won’t win but anything could happen,” says Tahmya Cappra, “I would like everyone to know that if I become your class president I will be the best I can be and try to fix any problems that anyone comes to me about. Thank you and vote for Cizzle.”
Aiden Glennon says “I have always felt confident in races like this. But I really want to win this so it makes me think more and more of how tough this race can be. In other words, I’m confident but the race will be tough.”
Vice president is the second highest ranking position.
Danielle DeJesus says she is very confident, “I don’t believe it’s stressful as of right now but- when my video is being projected for my peers to see – I am sure I’ll be a bit nervous.”
Jillian Donahue says, “I have always wanted to be a leader. I thought a perfect place to start would be vice president.”
Next is treasurer. The class treasurer is in charge of all the money from fundraising and anything else.
Ronan McNally thinks he’s the only one that best fits the job. McNally says math is his favorite subject. He thinks he is good for this position because he is very organized and wants to help the class raise a lot of money.
Grace Oliver is also running for treasurer. Math is one of her favorite subjects as well. She said, “I want to be treasurer because I will keep the money safe and I want us to have a great future in the next three years.”
Last, but certainly not least, is secretary. The secretary is in charge of taking notes at the student government meetings and sharing information with the rest of the officers.
Nick Stanton is very confident in running for secretary. Stanton says that he wants to be a leader.
Izzy Uong says, “I would like to be a secretary for our freshman class because I’m good at staying organized and keeping track of activities.”
Ryan Smith is also running but could not be reached at press time.
Candidates for Class of 2018 Election
The Rockland community suffered a great loss this week. Josh Rose, an RHS senior, football player, brother, and son, tragically passed away on Wednesday, October 1.
Josh will be greatly missed by his peers, teachers, coaches, and all those who knew him.
The thoughts of the Rockland community are with the Rose family during this difficult time.
There will be a brief ceremony honoring Josh preceding tonight’s home football game.
To help the Rose family during this time, a donation page has been set up and has already raised over $29,000.
To make a donation please click here.
Please click here to see arrangements at Magoun Biggins Funeral Home for Josh next week.
The following link will take you to a site that has been set up to help the Rose Family at their time of need.
Tim Sullivan, Veritas Staff
As we kick off the 2014-15 school year the question arises, “Who will be Mr. Rockland?”
The question will be answered when six seniors take the stage in the annual Mr. Rockland contest, sponsored by the Student Government Council.
With this year’s cast of characters, Pearse McNally, Leshon Crawford, Eddie Yeadon, Andrew Frazer, and Chris Landy, it’s sure to be a close race for Mr. Rockland.
In years past one part of the competition was improvisation. However, this year they have replaced that with dancing. For the dancing competition all the contestants will be on stage and a series of songs of all different types of music will be played. The contestants will have to put on their best dance moves for each song. This new part of the contest was the decision of SGC Finance and Fundraising Chair, Lexie Carchedi and SGC advisor, Kristen Walsh, who will be running this year’s Mr. Rockland.
Due to the unexpected prom request by last year’s Mr. Rockland, Derek Crowe, contestants are advised they will be automatically disqualified if they ask anyone to the prom.
One of the contestants, Pearse McNally, was asked why he signed up. He replied, “It’s been expected of me.” Looking ahead to winning the event, he said, “Obviously the Chipotle gift card would be swag and so would front row parking.” But, McNally says, he believes that everyone is a threat and there is so much talent this year.
Another RHS favorite who will be running is Andrew Frazer. He has one thing on his mind when it comes to winning and one thing only: “Be better than everyone else.” Looking back at past Mr. Rocklands Frazer said, “Mike McCauley’s performance a couple years ago [was the best] because of him playing a ukulele and him dressing up in a coconut bra.” Since Andrew has been known to be a good singer from Rockland High’s own production of High School Musical should we be expecting a lyrical performance in a funky outfit?
Eddie Yeadon says he is eager to get up on stage for the first time. Yeadon says he signed up for Mr. Rockland “because I want to win.” With this motivation, there is no telling what he could have planned for the night.
Judges for the event will be Mr. Casagrande, Mr. Damon, Mr. MacAllister, and Ms McDonough.
The Mr. Rockland competition will be held Thursday, Oct. 23 in the auditorium. Tickets are $5 and will be sold at the door. Don’t miss it!
Haley Macray, Veritas Web & Features Editor
On Thursday, September 25 it was announced that the nominees for this year’s Miss Rockland will be Katie DeLorey, Alex Pigeon, Brianna Starkey, Kara Penney, Danielle Whitcher, and Nicole Cook. The six girls will compete for the Miss Rockland tiara and the winner will be announced during halftime at next week’s Homecoming football game.
In order to become a member of the competition girls were nominated by their teachers. Teachers were asked to base their nominations on who they believe is a positive role model, has school spirit, shows kindness towards peers and teachers, participates in extracurricular activities, and shows effort in school and assignments.
In the upcoming days members of the senior class will cast their votes on who they believe truly deserves the title of “Miss Rockland.”
For the results and more about the Miss Rockland competition be sure to pick up the October issue of the Veritas.
Cameron Stuart, Veritas Sports Editor
The fall sports season is well underway and the teams have been successful with all making it into the win column.
Boys Soccer: 4-2-1
Girls Soccer: 6-2
Girls Cross Country 1-2
Boys Cross Country 3-0
The week was an exciting one with the girls and boys soccer teams playing a doubleheader under the lights at Abington on Wednesday night. The girls came away with an easy 6-1 win while the boys dropped a tough one 2-1.
The golf team picked up its second win on Monday beating EB 29-25.
Volleyball defeated Randolph 3-0 on Tuesday but followed that on Wednesday with a loss at Whitman-Hanson.
With a record of 2-0, the football team prepares for their game tonight at EB. Fans will remember last year’s three games with EB: the win at home and the losses in the D5 play-offs and on Thanksgiving Day. Revenge may be on the team’s mind but mostly the goal is just to keep the string going this year.
Haley Macray, Veritas Web & Features Editor
Rockland High students are always willing to to show some spirit and next week will be no exception. Spirit Week, run by the Student Government Council’s Spirit Committee, will kick off on Monday, September 29th.
The week will include five different themed days, which are listed below, and will conclude with the Homecoming Rally and football game on Friday and the Homecoming Dance on Saturday.
As in past years it is expected that RHS students will participate wholeheartedly in the events leading up to the football game and dance, celebrating the new school year with undeniable Rockland Pride.
The Spirit Week Schedule is as follows:
- Monday 9/29 – Tie Dye Day
- Tuesday 9/30 – Hipster vs. Prep Day
- Wednesday 10/1 – Favorite Sports Team Day
- Thursday 10/2 – Teacher-Student Swap Day
- Friday 10/3 – School Spirit Day (Class Day)
Haley Macray, Veritas Web & Features Editor
Scotland has voted not to secede from the United Kingdom by a margin of 55% to 45%, after nearly two years of rallying for and against the cause. It was not only Scottish adults who played a major role in the referendum; for the first time Scottish teenagers under the age of 18 were permitted to vote.
As voters headed to the voting booths on September 18, a final poll showed yes and no votes to be nearly tied. It would not be until the actual votes were counted that a clear cut answer could be made as to whether Scotland would leave the United Kingdom or not. Friday morning results were announced and the naysayers were victorious.
Scotland lowered the legal voting age from 18 to 16 in order to allow its teenagers a say in their country’s fate and future. It was thought by some that these teens would not take their voting privileges seriously and vote for independence without thinking. This was not the case according to Jan Eichhorn, a professor of social policy at the University of Edinburgh, who said that Scottish teenagers were more likely to vote against secession.
“Overall, they are informed. They have a slightly different way of getting at information. But there’s no evidence to suggest that they’re less capable than adults of voting, from a research point of view,” said Eichhorn in a National Public Radio article.
Although teenagers did not make up a large percentage of the population who voted, if Eichhorn is correct, maybe the teenage bracket of voters did make a major impact in the decision, if not through votes, then possibly through influence of their peers and fellow Scots.
“Once I’d voted I felt happy. It’s good that younger people are allowed to vote. It’s our future we’re talking about here.” said Brandyn Murphy, a Scottish teenager, as part of The Guardian’s coverage of the referendum.
The participation seen with Scotland’s teenage voters opens up the question, should the legal voting age be permanently lowered in Scotland and other countries?
Lowering the legal voting age from 18 to 16 is only a two year difference in age and maturity. Most students and teenagers are exposed to politics daily through school, social media, and other platforms. Some say that if teenagers are willing and capable of making an informed political decision then it could make sense for them to have the right to vote.
On the other hand, some members of this age bracket may not be prepared to make such a weighty decision at the age of 16. Some may argue that two years can make a large difference in maturity and intelligence. Two years can be the equivalent of two levels in high school in which a student could increase their knowledge of politics and the economy.
The overall decision being made through voting, as seen in Scotland, can have a huge affect on these teenagers. If it is going to affect them some how in the future then many say it makes sense that they should have a say in the matter, but at the same time others believe some teenagers might not be ready to hold such a large responsibility at that age.
The Scottish referendum shows that a portion of teenagers are fully capable of making a well informed, mature decision. From reports, they participated in the vote respectfully and most of all they cared about what answer they were making whether it was “yes” or “no.”
Teenagers these days are well informed of their government and surroundings whether they mean to be or not. Not only are they informed, they are opinionated.
Teenagers 16 years old and up can be capable of being just as educated about politics as their elders. If willing to research their opinions and educate themselves about political decisions, many believe teens should not be held back from making choices regarding their government, country, and most of all their future.
Haley Macray, Veritas Staff
In the upcoming weeks RHS students, teachers, sports teams, and clubs will be supporting Breast Cancer Awareness month. A variety of activities, including Pink Out Day, t-shirt sales, and, most importantly, the Making Strides for Breast Cancer Walk will take place during the month of October.
This year RHS’s donation goal of $3,000 comes with a special incentive. Assistant Principal Kathleen Paulding and science teacher Angelina Armstrong have both vowed to dye their hair pink for the month if this goal is reached by October 1. The school’s overall goal for the months of September and October is $5,000.
Helping to reach these goals can be done by making donations to the “Rockland High School” team on the Making Strides website or through the purchase of breast cancer awareness t-shirts which are currently being sold in the cafeteria.
With a great deal of spirit and support, Rockland High School will help do its part in finding a cure for Breast Cancer in true Bulldog fashion.
For those looking to participate in the walk, directions for signing up can be found below.
The walk will be held in Boston on October 5. Click here and join the “Rockland High School” team. Through signing up you can create your own personal donation goal and invite others to donate as well. Busses for the walk will be provided but you may also meet the rest of the team in Boston.
Click here and select donate to team. Make sure to select “Rockland High School” from the drop down menu.
If you have any questions regarding the walk, donations, or sign-ups email Kristen Walsh at email@example.com
RHS Principal Alan Cron reminds high school parents about the annual Back to School Night in the following press release:
“Back to School Night at Rockland High School is this Wednesday, September 17, 2014. This is a great opportunity to get an overview of the high school, receive information from various organizations, and meet teachers and administrators.
6:00 – 6:30 p.m.
Parents/Guardians of seniors: There will be a session with the high school Guidance Counselors in the auditorium. This is a chance to learn more about the college application and financial aid process.
6:30 – 7:00 p.m.
All Parents/Guardians: School Administrators will provide important information about the school year and members of parent/teacher organizations will speak briefly about their efforts to support the school.
All Parents/Guardians: Follow your student’s schedule for classes 1-7.
Please have your son or daughter complete this form for you.
We look forward to seeing you on the 17th!” – Dr. Alan Cron, RHS Principal
Haley Macray, Veritas Staff
Described as “a simple girl with a dream” comedian Joan Rivers was a pioneer in many fields. Rivers died at the age of 81 on September 4 after being placed on life support for several days following complications with a routine surgery.
Rivers’ influential career started with the Tonight Show. There she was mentored by host Johnny Carson and became the only permanent guest host. On the Tonight Show Rivers’ iconic comedic style began to form and flourish as she would make fun of celebrities and her many plastic surgeries.
Following her time spent on the Tonight Show, Rivers went on to host her own show, The Late Show Starring Joan Rivers, making her the first female to host her own late night talk show. Following this, she transitioned into daytime television with The Joan Rivers Show, winning a Daytime Emmy in 1990.
Her success with television did not stop there. Possibly her most successful endeavor, Rivers established Live from the Red Carpet for E! Network in 1996. This program created one of Rivers’ most memorable questions, “Who are you wearing?” After great success with this show Rivers became the host of E!’s popular Fashion Police. Alongside co-hosts Giuliana Rancic, anchor of E! News, Kelly Osbourne, and George Kotsiopoulos, Rivers commented on celebrity “Must See Looks of the Week,” always making sure to include humor. She referred to viewers as the “Joan Rangers.”
Besides her TV and entertainment ventures, Rivers also tried her hand in fashion designing. She debuted her QVC line featuring jewelry, scarves, and clothing in 1990. The line has remained a success to this day.
Whether she realized it or not, Rivers paved the way for many other comedians, talk show hosts, and fashion programs. She was an icon that many are saying passed too soon.
On August 28 Rivers went in for surgery on her vocal chords in a Manhattan clinic. What was planned to be a routine procedure became serious quickly when Rivers stopped breathing. She was transported to Mount Sinai Hospital where she was put into a medically induced coma after reports say she entered cardiac arrest. According to these reports doctors attempted to bring her out of the coma on September 1. Two days later she was moved to a private room in order to provide her with extra comfort. On September 4 Rivers died “peacefully at 1:17pm surrounded by family and close friends,” says a statement from Rivers’ daughter Melissa Rivers.
After the sad news was announced fans took to social media to extend their condolences.
“Cooper [Rivers’ grandson] and I have found ourselves humbled by the outpouring of love, support, and prayers we have received from around the world. They have been heard and appreciated,” said Melissa in the same statement regarding her mother’s death.
Previous to her death, in one of her many books, Rivers had declared that she wanted an elaborate funeral. She wanted publicists and reporters making a fuss, singing, and entertainment.
Although Rivers’ funeral did not involve Meryl Streep crying in five different accents like Rivers had hoped, it was as Hollywood as a funeral could get, described as “Joan all the way” by Deborah Norville, host of Inside Edition.
The September 7 funeral that took place at Temple Emanu-El in New York included a eulogy by Howard Stern, a close friend of Rivers, performances by the The New York City Gay Men’s Chorus, and speeches from many of Rivers’ celebrity friends. Mourning fans were lined up in the streets outside of the temple. The funeral was as “show-biz” as possible, just the way Rivers would have wanted it.
Broadway marquees were dimmed for one minute on September 9 at 6:45 in memory of Rivers who had performed on the famous street in the past.
Rivers’ passing has had a huge outreaching affect. She paved the way for many comedians, especially those who were female and became an iconic part of Hollywood and its fashion scene with Live from the Red Carpet and Fashion Police. Rivers will be greatly missed by many.
“My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh. Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.” – Melissa Rivers
Mike Leavitt, Veritas Staff
The Advanced Placement Kick Off Rally held on September 10 in the RHS auditorium was a huge success. Students from all classes attended. Among the speakers were Principal Alan Cron, Senator John F. Keenan, Superintendent John Retchless, and Mass Insight spokesperson, Jeff Mahoney. Each speaker expressed how they feel about students leaving their comfort zone and trying something new that will challenge them. With Keenan’s well spoken speech, Retchless’ power and Mahoney’s spirit and motivation it was hard not to pay attention. The highlight of the assembly, however, was the dazzling Ms. Sam Hoyo, science department coordinator, who made a fashion statement along with her sincere words of encouragement that everyone should take an AP class before they leave RHS.
Rockland High School’s Advanced Placement scores will end up skyrocketing in these next couple years. As of right now RHS has a student challenging himself to the limit by taking an AP course as a freshman. This takes a lot of time and effort, and at such a young age this student has taken it upon himself to mature, realizing that hard work in the classroom leads to a successful life.
But the number one reason why RHS will end up at the top of the AP scores is because of how hard the teachers work and how much they care for their students. It’s a fact that if you ask them a question you better believe they are going to do everything in their power to answer that question because they care about your future.
From a senior’s point of view, many are a little envious of all these opportunities that are now being provided. It’s hoped that the underclassmen will take advantage of them.
Haley Macray, Veritas Staff
New York’s famous skyline will not be lighting up gold anytime soon and neither will its most recognizable feature.
The Empire State Building is an iconic New York City landmark. It has been known to switch from its signature white lighting to all different combinations of illumination in honor of organizations, teams, and holidays.
A recent controversy involving the Empire State Building arose when individuals asked for the building to light up in gold in honor of September being Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. The Empire State Building’s management declined to do so.
Their website provides an application for lighting requests. On this web page it states that the Empire State Building is privately owned, along with other terms of agreement, including the following:
“The Empire State Building celebrates many cultures and causes in the world community with iconic lightings. Outside of its tradition of lightings for the religious holidays of Easter, Eid al Fitr, Hanukah and Christmas, the Empire State Building has a specific policy against lighting for religious figures, religious organizations, and additional religious holidays,” says the Empire State Building’s tower lighting request page. “The Empire State Building also does not light for political figures and campaigns, for personal events such as birthdays, anniversaries or weddings, or for commercial events such as product launches.”
One of the main reasons why officials at the Empire State Building refuse to light the tower in gold is because the request to do so came from an individual, Tony Stoddard, who lost his son in 2012 to childhood cancer.
“It is clearly stated on our Lighting Partner Application on our website that the Empire State Building does not accept lighting requests from individuals,” says a statement from Empire State Building employees regarding the childhood cancer outrage. Yet, no mention of this agreement can be seen on the application.
This sparked outrage through the childhood cancer community. Many were confused as to why the Empire State Building would light in honor of movies, Broadway shows, and other less serious causes and not childhood cancer which affects thousands yearly.
Interesting contradictions regarding the Empire State Building were brought up following this issue. As said earlier the Empire State Building declines to light for “political figures and campaigns.” However, just recently the landmark lit up blue in honor of the Democratic National Committee in hopes of having the party hold its next convention in the famous city. It seems as though this lighting goes directly against the building’s terms of agreement.
Childhood cancer activists took to social media sparking a campaign asking the Empire State Building to reverse their decision and light gold. This media petition has good intentions but has not made much headway as of yet.
The Empire State Building website reads in bold, “Any lighting request via petitions and/or social media campaigns is automatically not considered.”
After heated discussions the Empire State Building administrators released a statement saying that they will not be lighting gold for September but that they in no way oppose support of the cause.
Although the monument’s managers have their own reasons for choosing not to accept the requests of childhood cancer advocates, their explanations seem to be a bit one sided.
“This social media campaign has become abusive,” says a statement regarding the controversy. “Empire State Building employees have been personally attacked on the phone and harassed by e-mail and the internet by people who do not know them with profanity, threats, bullying and, perhaps the worst, wishes that they ‘get cancer’.”
It is not appropriate to take actions like this towards Empire State Building associates but at the same time children diagnosed with cancer face incredibly more difficult battles each and every day.
The Empire State Building administrators have summed up their position with the following statement.
“There is no lighting in 2014 for organizations which address childhood cancer. Organizations which behave responsibly may newly apply for a Lighting Partnership in 2015 and future years.”
The Empire State Building’s statement does explain why the choice of not lighting gold was made, but now it is not just an individual standing behind the cause. A large group of people are passionate about this issue. In this case the Empire State Building should consider making an exception to the tower lighting request terms of agreement.
Haley Macray, Veritas Staff
On Wednesday, September 3, Rockland High School’s Student Government Council met for their first meeting of the year.
After a brief introduction from the council’s president, Katie DeLorey, council members took part in a Twitter-related icebreaker where underclassmen and upperclassmen teamed up to compete for the best photo.
Vice President PJ Butler, Secretary Haley Macray, Treasurer Ryan Sugrue, and Publicity Coordinator Ashley Pezzella all introduced themselves and welcomed the freshmen class to their first SGC meeting.
Committee chairs spoke briefly about plans for their upcoming fall events such as the Breast Cancer Walk, Project Pumpkin, Mr. Rockland, and Spirit Week.
Class presidents announced that class t-shirts are in the works for all grades and will be available shortly. They also quickly described their fundraiser ideas for the 2014-2015 school year.
The council as a whole collected extra school supplies to be donated as this month’s charity.
Fall is an action packed season for RHS’s Student Government Council and members will be quite busy during the next few months.
The Dogs are back.
On Wednesday August 27 Rockland High School students began their academic year.
While it was new to some, it was old to others. Senior Brianna Starkey said, “Same old, same old. It feels like we didn’t even have a summer.”
But not everything is the same. “The schedule rotates now and is somewhat confusing,” sophomore Jackie Malloy said.
For incoming freshmen the schedule is something they are familiar with from middle school, but there are still things they need to get used to. “In the middle school all our classes were on one floor. Now we have to go all over the place,” said freshman Jaymie Atkins.
Freshman Danielle DeJesus said, “It feels like bumper cars in the hallways.”
After their first two hectic days, students will have the long Labor Day weekend to recuperate.
Harrison Shields, Veritas Staff
Everyone loves being at the top. Head of the school, head of a team, head of a league, face it, everyone loves being the head of anything.
However, no one enjoys going from the top to the bottom. For one group of students, the eighth graders of middle school, it happens every year. The eighth graders run the middle school, but once they graduate, they start back at the bottom. They go from a school with twelve year olds to one whose older students are legal adults, not an easy transition for anyone.
Some adapt better than others, but most are just nervous freshmen, being the little fish in the school.
Some freshman classes come in more prepared than others. Eighth grade science teacher Mr. Ricciarelli says, “I think this class in particular is very ready.”
Being ready and being nervous are two different things, however. Incoming freshman Mark Shields says, “I am nervous to be back at the bottom with a lot of kids I don’t know. I know a few kids so I hope I see them a lot.”
Shields isn’t alone. Fellow classmate Matt McGaffigan says, “ I am a little nervous. Some people say it’s the best time of their life and some say it’s the worst. I hope it’s the best for me.”
It’s easy to understand how incoming freshmen must feel; everyone has been in the position of the new guy once, and who likes being the new guy (or girl)? Being nervous is only one part of high school incoming freshmen must adjust to. Ricciarelli says that the major difference of taking the step up is “not relying on constant direction from the teacher and taking some initiative; basically they have to learn to be more independent.”
Shields didn’t think about it in that aspect. He thought about it in a more simple way. He said the only difference he’ll see is “having to go to the same class in the same order every day.” McGaffigan said he’ll have to get used to “not being the top kids in the school anymore. We’re freshmen.”
High school sports are always a major step up in an athlete’s career. Both incoming freshmen are nervous for different reasons. Shields said he is nervous because the level of competition picks up, and it gets harder. McGaffigan, however, is more cool about it. He says, “I’m not nervous now, but I think I eventually will be.”
Finding their way at the bottom of the school won’t be easy. With the endless freshman chants, the seniors who tower over them, and the speedball games that students treat like the World Series, the freshmen will surely become acclimated to the school, one way or another.
Sara Bistany, Veritas Staff
A historical architect, an investment banker and an educator were guests of honor on Wednesday June 4 at the Emerald Hall in Abington as Rockland High School inducted three alumni into its Academic Hall of Fame. The ceremony took place before the Underclassmen Academic Awards ceremony. The latest inductees join a group of RHS Hall of Famers that includes authors, artists, doctors, lawyers, teachers and an astronaut.
Assistant Principal Susan Patton introduced the three inductees, Marsha Fader ‘68, Wayne Owen ‘74 and Fredrick Damon ‘82, who each spoke about their days at Rockland High, their accomplishments after high school, and the influence Rockland has had in their lives.
Marsha Fader who graduated from Rockland High School in 1968 was an outstanding student and very active in school activities. After graduating she attended Simmons College where she earned a degree in American Studies. Afterwards she attended Columbia University and received her Masters degree in Historic Preservation. She also received a Masters of Architecture degree from the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture.
Fader said she has traveled all over the world designing, restoring and preserving historic buildings including the Deng Nan-Guang Museum Park in Taiwan, the Turquoise Trail Art Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico and the 1746 Old Windmill in Nantucket. Fader now lives in Nantucket where you will see many examples of her work.
She credits her days in Rockland with giving her a strong sense of community and family. She said that her mother and father both owned businesses on Union St. for many years and that she developed her love for older buildings and architecture growing up among the many historic buildings on Union Street.
Wayne Owen, a 1974 graduate, is one of five Owen siblings who have graduated from RHS. Owen was a member of the National Honor Society and captain of all three sports he played. Owen attended Babson College and had a double major in Accounting and Quantitative Methods. After college he worked at State Street Bank for 12 years. In 1990 he and three other college classmates launched an investment firm which now manages 35 billion dollars in assets. Owen is married and has three children.
Owen credits his family and the schools and community of Rockland for the perseverance that led to his successes in life. He said that to become a part of such a group of alumni is more than he would have imagined and he told students in attendance to take advantage of all the opportunities that Rockland and its schools provide for them. Owen also said that the great tradition of sports in Rockland was very important to him. He mentioned former principals and coaches at RHS, A. Scott Mackinlay and Steve Sangster, as mentors. Owen was also part of the ‘72 State Championship Basketball Team.
Fredrick Damon, as RHS students know, is a respected math teacher and dean at Rockland High School. He is also the head coach of the boys basketball team and an assistant football coach.
During his senior year as a student at RHS he was a starter on the basketball team and captain of the football team. In 1982 he graduated fourth in his class and went on to attend Boston College. When he graduated from BC in 1988 he received a degree in mathematics and a minor in computer science. He is married with five children.
Damon said he had not intended to be a teacher but started “quite by accident” in 1990, teaching for five years in the Rogers Middle School. According to Patton, Damon “has a way with reluctant learners.” Damon said he enjoys being able to affect his students’ lives in the ways a teacher and coach can. In his acceptance speech he read several letters from former students who thanked him for the help and guidance they received from him. In his speech,Damon also recognized his mother, Fran Damon, who is retiring this year as a secretary in the Rogers Middle School. Mrs. Damon has worked for the Rockland Schools for over 30 years!
Patton congratulated each of the three new members of the Hall of Fame in the traditional closing of her introductions. “…for all your accomplishments, past, present and future, we are proud to induct you into the Rockland High School Hall of Fame.”