Author Archives: jasminmorse

Farewell to the Class of 2017

Jasmin Morse, Veritas Web Editor

5-23-17

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Senior class of 2016-2017 attending their final pep rally at their time in high school photo by Maddie Gear

After spending many years roaming through the halls of RHS, the Class of 2017’s time here is coming to a close. Today, May 23, is the bittersweet last day of classes for this year’s seniors and they’re feeling some mixed emotions about having to leave the place they have spent most of their life. Although it is sad that it has come to a close, the seniors have an exciting, fun week ahead.

Seniors’ Schedules:

Wednesday, May 24: Seniors who need to take finals will come to school. Students who have a combined total of 5 or fewer absences or tardies (of any kind) in each class between the dates of April 7th and May 23rd AND are in good standing with the main office may be exempt from taking final exams.

Thursday, May 25: Seniors are required to attend Senior Issues from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. They will also have the opportunity to clean out their lockers. All senior obligations are required to be completed by Thursday as well (Detention hours, community service, book balances, food service balances, library book balances, etc.).

Friday, May 26: Senior Issues will be continuing from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. The senior BBQ will be put on at 11:30 a.m.

Tuesday, May 30: Graduation rehearsal will be at 9 a.m. and caps and gowns will be distributed. All grades for all seniors are also due on this date.

Wednesday, May 31: A yearbook signing breakfast will take place in the RHS cafeteria at 8 a.m. Then at 9 a.m. seniors wearing their caps and gowns will parade through the Rockland elementary schools and middle school.

Thursday, June 1: The RHS academic and athletic banquet will take place with a student dinner at 6 p.m.  in the cafeteria. Students and parents are then encouraged to attend the awards ceremony in the auditorium. (Proper dress required).

Friday, June 2: The final graduation rehearsal will take place for seniors at 9 a.m. Then later in the evening graduation will commence at 7 p.m. in the Veterans Memorial Stadium. Seniors are required to report for lineup in the gym at 6 p.m. (Proper dress required)

Saturday, June 3: Rain date for graduation is at 11 a.m.

Post it notes adorn the windows for seniors’ last day of regular classes. Photo by Jasmin Morse

 

Sobering Crash for Upperclassmen

Jasmin Morse, Veritas Web Editor

5-16-17

wide angle of scene

photo by Maddie Gear. Mock Crash aftermath

On the dreary, rainy morning of May 15, RHS had an emotional, eye opening, drunk driving crash simulation, put on in time for prom and graduation season.  This event occurred around 10 in the morning on MacKinlay Way. This arrangement was completely student-driven, mainly by the senior class in collaboration with principal, Mr. Harrison, along with Rockland Police and Fire Department, Magoun-Biggins Funeral Home, and Rockland Cares.

The morning started off with students coming in the auditorium as usual, smiling faces chatting with friends. Senior class vice president, Colleen McCarthy explained that this presentation’s purpose was to emphasize the importance of good decision-making during the exciting end of the year activities to come.

This was followed by a brief video to set the stage for the crash scene that was to follow. The video featured RHS students we all know and love, and was produced by Jessie Lutts and Shannon Lindahl with the help of WRPS.

Senior class president, Kaylee Patten starred in the video as the host of the party, which featured many juniors and seniors from the school. The video then cut to Sophie McLellan and boyfriend, Mike Belmonte who played the part of the responsible students who stayed home from the party.

Then in a series of inter-cuts we see: The couple decide to drive to the movies. Then, after too many drinks, Mike McPeck decides to go out driving with Kaylee Patten in the passenger seat, as well as Matthew O’Brien and Hannah Boben in the back seat.

After foolishly driving drunk and messing around, the car of party-goers crashes into the car of the innocent couple, which led the way to the crash scene.

As students filed out of the auditorium and outside to the front of the high school, they walked out to a horrendous scene: beer cans on the ground, Patten through the windshield, two collided cars and broken windshields splattered in blood. Then they heard the cries of McLellan trying to wake her unconscious boyfriend as Boben tried to wake Patten and McPeck tried to hide the evidence of their crime by throwing the empty beer cans under the car.

After much commotion, the hearse picks up Patten, McPeck and Patten’s father are put in cuffs, and ultimately everyone’s lives involved would be evidently changed from the accident.

As the events unfolded, it was evident that everyone was emotionally affected, from the actors, to the staff, and especially the students. Although everyone knew the crash was only a simulation, many people in the crowd had tears in their eyes, imagining many of their friends dead or distraught. It became evident to the crowd that the reality of the situation is so real that not only the cars were wrecked, but also their lives, and the lives of friends, family, and relationships of those in the cars.

Afterward followed an emotional debriefing back in the auditorium with Colleen McCarthy who hosted a panel discussion with the actors.

The mock drunk driving simulation was a somber, eye-opening experience for all involved. It reminded student the reality of the their decisions and how one can change their lives and everyone they love. The presentation hit home to all, in that you can say the event was a success and hopefully will stay with all the people it impacted in hopes to save a life.

The following students were involved in the production of the video and simulated crash:

  • Jaymie Atkins
  • Noelle Atkins
  • Michael Belmonte
  • Hannah Boben
  • Julia DiCienzo
  • Jeffre Donahue
  • Ryan Leavitt
  • Shannon Lindahl
  • Jessica Lutts
  • Colleen McCarthy
  • Brian McLaughlin
  • Sophie McLellan
  • Michael McPeck
  • Hannah Murphy
  • Matthew O’Brien
  • Alyssa Patten
  • Kaylee Patten
  • Shawn Ward
  • Kelsey Willett

We want to thank the following community partners who made this event possible:

  • Lou’s Autobody
  • Rockland Cares
  • Rockland Police Department
  • Rockland Fire Department
  • Magoun-Biggins Funeral Home
  • The Patten Family
  • Rockland Highway Department
  • Universal Autobody
  • WRPS

For more on the program and student reactions, see the next edition of the Veritas newspaper available on May 23.

Photos below are by Veritas photographer, Maddie Gear.

Simulated Drunk Driving Accident to be Staged at RHS on May 15

Jasmin Morse, Veritas Web Editor

5-10-16

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Many schools have staged a mock drunk driving accident especially at this time of the year.

On Monday at 9:30, May 15, RHS principal John Harrison along with Rockland Police and Fire Department have scheduled a mock drunk driving crash to take place in front of the high school on MacKinlay Way.

This presentation will be for juniors and seniors only, in preparation for the upcoming events such as graduation and prom. This idea was given to Mr. Harrison in the winter by the senior class who wanted a student-driven educational program on driving under the influence of alcohol. This idea is sparked by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that reported that car crashes are the leading cause of death for teen drivers. Also about a quarter of those crashes involve an underage driver under the influence of alcohol.

The collision will be staged and will take approximately one hour although access to the school will be limited due to set up and clean up for the event. WRPS will be recording the event.

Prior to the mock crash RHS juniors and seniors will report to the auditorium to watch a video in preparation for the following event. Current seniors were in charge of writing, editing, and filming the video as well as other students featured in the video and simulation.

Following the mock crash students will return to the auditorium to debrief with several local law enforcement and school officials. Counseling will be provided throughout the day, and anyone choosing to opt out of the experience may do so at any point.

2016-2017 SGC Banquet

Jasmin Morse, Veritas Web Editor

5-8-17

SGC Big 5 and Advisors

From left seniors, Julia DiCienzo, Shannon Lindahl, Noelle Atkins, Adam Royle and Taylor Gallagher led the SGC this year. Joanne White and Amanda Lanigan are SGC advisors. Maddie Gear photo

Last Wednesday, on May third in the RMS/RHS Lecture Hall the graduating members of the RHS Student Government Council held their final gathering to reflect upon the 2016-2017 academic year.

After two videos highlighting this past year in the club, awards were given to many, as well as many speeches coming from the SGC E-Board. The seniors had to say goodbye to a club many of the graduating members have been involved with since freshman year.

Awards and Recipients
UNSUNG HERO (The Ed Damon Award) Jacob Leahy
SPIRIT AWARD (The Marianne Long Award) Jeffre Donahue
BEST COMMITTEE CHAIR (The Krystal Cowing Award) Hannah Murphy
INNOVATION AWARD (The Elizabeth DuRoss Award) Jillian Donahue
COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD (The Pat Fanning Award) Macie Jones
SEMASC AWARD (The Renee Ceurvels Award) Shawn Ward
MASC AWARD (The Kelsey Lewis Award) Jillian Donahue
BEST REPRESENTATIVE (The Aleksa Cieri Award) Caitlin Cameron
BEST HEAD REPRESENTATIVE (The Casey Regan Award) Francisco Oliveira
BEST CLASS PRESIDENT ( The Joshua May Award) Kaylee Patten
BEST SENIOR: Leo Field
BEST JUNIOR: Jaymie Atkins
BEST SOPHOMORE: Justin Sherlock
BEST FRESHMAN: Madeline Gear
MOST DEDICATED (Dan Guarracino Award) John Ellard
SGC BEST OVERALL (Ashley Kelly Award) Noelle Atkins
SPECIAL OLYMPICS ADVOCATE AWARD : Colleen McCarthy
THE SHOULDER TO LEAN ON AWARD: Chris Penney
ABOVE AND BEYOND AWARD: Adam Royle
THE STEP IT UP AWARD: Shannon Lindahl
MOST RELIABLE AWARD: Julia DiCienzo
OUTSTANDING ORGANIZER AWARD: Taylor Gallagher
THE ADVISOR OF THE YEAR AWARD: Noelle Atkins
photos below by Veritas photographer, Maddie Gear

photos taken by Maddie Gear

SGC End of the Year Banquet Tomorrow Night

Jasmin Morse, Website Editor

5-2-17

Tomorrow night at 7 pm in the RMS/RHS Lecture Hall, Rockland High School’s Student Government Council will be hosting their annual end of the year banquet.

During this time the club will be reflecting upon this year’s accomplishments and memories. Speeches will be given by all senior board members as well as president of each class. Multiple awards  will be given out to a few of the star SGC members.

The event will also include the senior members’ last energizer, and will end with the passing of the gavel from 2016-2017 SGC president, Noelle Atkins, to 2017-2018 president, Hannah Murphy.

RHS Travel Club Visits England, Ireland and Scotland

photos courtesy of Kristen Walsh

Jasmin Morse, Veritas Web Editor

4-26-17

Over this April Vacation, alongside the Guatemala Trip, other RHS students and staff traveled to England, Ireland and Scotland.

The trip consisted of 46 students chaperoned by six RHS faculty members. According to the leader of the RHS Travel Club, Kristen Walsh, everything went well. She said, “[The kids] had good attitudes, were open minded.” She also reflected upon the awesome tour guides they had that were funny, yet extremely informative about places and history that might be unfamiliar to most students.

Ms. Walsh said the crowd favorite was probably Edinburgh in Scotland. She explained that the city was very different from the ones we are used to here. In Scotland, they visited Edinburgh Castle.

Another beloved spot was London, England where they spent three days. One of the favorite spots on the trip was the London Eye, a giant Ferris wheel on the South Bank of the River Thames in London, that they visited at night.  She said it gave them  a “cool view.”

They also spent four days in Ireland: two days in Northern Ireland, as well as two in Dublin. In Northern Ireland they spent some time at Giant’s Causeway, a formation of rocks the students had the opportunity to climb.Ms. Walsh explained she thoroughly enjoyed the tour guides who discussed subjects like the problems and conflicts that have taken place in the country, and made them funny and enjoyable to learn about.

It was an enjoyable trip that also gave cultural and historical lessons to the Rockland High School students.

RHS Goes to Guatemala

photos courtesy of Amanda Lanigan, Melissa Shaughnessy and Gregory Connors. Click on one to see the gallery.

Jasmin Morse, Veritas Web Editor

4- 24-17

Over April Vacation, a group of fifteen RHS students and faculty went on a service trip to Panajachel, Guatemala. 12 students along with their three chaperones: Melissa Shaughnessy, Amanda Lanigan, and Gregory Connors embarked on the trip Saturday, April 15 and returned Saturday, April 22.

On this trip, the students and staff worked along side a program called “Worthy Village” to teach impoverished families how to filter water. The program was started by 2011 RHS alumni, Julia Rayberg. Their mission is to help the people of Panajachel who rely on one lake where they wash their dishes, clothes, and even bathe making it contaminated and unsafe to drink.

In Guatemala, the students gave villagers advice and methods on good hygiene as well as supplies. They also showed the villagers how to use the water filters, provided by Worthy Village.

Rayberg wrote to the Rockland group on Facebook: “I can not express how grateful the Worthy Village team is for all your hard work here in Guatemala. I am so honored, so proud and so grateful to know you’re Rockland kids. There’s just something about Rockland.”

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