Category Archives: Clubs / Activities

RHS Top Dogs 2021

Althea Olsen, Veritas Editor-in-Chief

Erin Gardner, Jessica Driscoll, Claudia Abouzeid and Lauren Draicchio with their Top Dog Awards!

Jessica Driscoll

Jessica was selected to travel to Guatemala on a service based trip where she would give dozens of Mayan indigenous people sustainable access to clean drinking water and teach health and hygiene workshops in indigenous communities. Jessica did not let the cancellation hinder her. She was the driving force behind organizing the gift wrapping efforts for the 2nd Annual Giving Tree! Jess came to school during her senior privilege time to wrap books and brought a bright and positive energy with her! Jessica is also a two sport athlete competing on the volleyball and lacrosse teams.  She is an incredibly kind-hearted and genuine young woman and I know that her future holds big things!

Erin Gardner

Erin was selected to travel to Guatemala on a service based trip where she would give dozens of Mayan indigenous people sustainable access to clean drinking water and teach health and hygiene workshops. Erin asked how she could contribute in addition to donating a book to the 2nd Annual Giving Tree. She came to school during her senior privilege time to wrap books! Erin has such a positive way of changing the world in which she lives and I’m sure her future will be impactful! Erin is a member of Student Government Council and competes on the lacrosse team. She also works at Southwood Nursing Home.

Claudia Abouzeid

Claudia Abouzeid is a senior who will be graduating in three years. Committed to her studies, Claudia knew early in her high school career she wanted to graduate early and then attend college to continue her studies. Claudia’s compassion and societal awareness is indicative of her depth as a person. She is enthusiastic and passionate about social justice. She is a kind, dedicated student, and her commitment to greater equality and fighting injustice makes me proud to have her as a student. She plans to study psychology.

Lauren Draicchio

Lauren Draicchio is a four year player of varsity  lacrosse and also serves as the team captain.   She has served as an executive and general  member of the student council, a freshman mentor as well as class president.  Lauren is a youth cheerleading junior coach and a youth basketball referee.  She plans to attend a four year college and major in nursing with hopes of becoming a Beyond Borders nurse, traveling to provide healthcare to less fortunate children and communities. Lauren was selected to travel to Guatemala on a service based trip where she would give dozens of Mayan indigenous people sustainable access to clean drinking water and teach health and hygiene workshops in indigenous communities. As soon as the second year of the Giving Tree book drive was announced, Lauren jumped at the opportunity to get involved and spread holiday cheer. Lauren came to school during her senior privilege time to wrap books. Lauren is a shining star and we know she will continue to impact her community during her next chapter!

Thank you Dr. Harrison, Ms. Kemp, and Ms. O’Brien for coordinating the event and the rewards given, and congratulations again to the RHS Top Dogs 2021.

Virtual Pep Rally Scheduled For Tomorrow, Feb. 12 at 1:15 p.m.

Rockland High School students filled the stands at last year’s outdoor rally that was held in October.

Feb. 9, 2021

Ngan Nguyen, Veritas Staff

  • Jonah Pishkin, Veritas Staff,  also contributed to this report

To raise a bit of school spirit, Rockland High School’s Student Government Council  is hosting a Virtual Pep Rally on Friday, February 12 at 1:15 PM. Even though this is not our traditional homecoming pep rally in October, it will still be fun and spiritually uplifting for everyone. 

 The pep rally will be from 1:15-1:35 PM. Here is the link to watch the rally:

Students in Cohort A will be watching the event in their E block class and Cohort B students will be asked to participate from home through a webinar link. 

To prepare for this pep rally, it’s encouraged that students should wear their class shirt or color to show spirit and pride for their grade.  

There will be time for sports and other school groups’ ‘honorable mentions’,  an announcement of Miss Rockland, as well as drama and band recognitions. Games are also planned for students to participate in during the rally. Some of the games include a backpack quest and two truths and one lie.

Cohort A, make sure to have your Chromebook with you, and Cohort B, the link will be sent through your school email, so be on the lookout for it.

There are varying opinions on the subject of having a virtual pep rally.

Of those interviewed most agreed that making the event virtual was justified, in order to keep students and others safe. Senior Alexis DeFranc explained why making the event virtual, while sad, was the best idea for the event. Saying that she thought it was justified, she responded, “Yes, because it will keep everyone safe and make sure nobody gets sick or be in close contact with those who may have the virus.”

Senior Billy Robinson thinks that the rally even though it is virtual is a great opportunity, considering the tremendous amount of stress taken out of a school day. In his words, “I think pep rallies are good because they are fun, and a good break from the stress of school, bringing the classes together.”

In the wake of the event going virtual, senior Lauren Draicchio also responded to the matter, and how others may feel about the idea. “I know some people may not be as excited about the idea of having a virtual pep rally; however, I believe to even be able to have the opportunity to come together in the slightest way is amazing. It may sway from what a typical pep rally would look like but it’s something to look forward to, and to me that’s exciting.”

Lauren concluded, “During times like these it’s important to stay positive and be grateful for what we can do and the memories we can make.”

With the upcoming February Vacation, it should also be a good way to get students excited about having a week off from school next week!

Here again is the link for the virtual rally.


RHS Top Dogs 2021

Top Dogs from Cohort B were recognized on Thursday Feb. 4. From left: Hannah Makarski, Zachary Solomon, Althea Olsen, Greta Russo, Anthony DiNino and Colin McKerrell. Not in picture: Hunter Wardwell. Cohort A Top Dogs will be recognized next week.

Feb. 4, 2021

Congratulations to the seniors who are Top Dogs for the Class of 2021! On Thursday, February 4, 2021 seniors from Cohort B  were announced as Top Dogs, and rewarded with chocolate, a t-shirt, and a framed picture. Below are the biographies of the 2021 Top Dog recipients from Cohort B.

Greta Russo:

Greta Russo is a member of the varsity soccer and lacrosse teams. She is also a student council executive board member as well as the president of the Massachusetts Association of Student Councils. She has partnered with volunteer work with the Special Olympics of Massachusetts and is a member of the National Honor Society. Greta plans to attend a four-year college majoring in either pre-med or environmental policy.

Hannah Makarski:

Hannah is a three-sport athlete who has participated in soccer, track, and basketball. She is a mentor of the Bulldog Buddy program, a freshman mentor as well as working in our unified gym classes. Hannah also volunteers her time with the Special Ed program in our preschool program. She plans to attend Merrimack College, major in health science, and become a respiratory therapist.

Althea Olsen:

Althea is the National Honor Society Secretary who has been the recipient of achievement awards such as the Science award and English award. She attended the Boston Leadership Institute for Surgical Research. She contributes positively to RHS by writing for the school newspaper, serving as a Freshman Mentor, and competing on the softball and swim teams. She gives back to the community by volunteering. She most recently organized a Magic School for neighbors with young children when the district shifted to fully remote.

Anthony DiNino:

Anthony DiNino has excelled as a student in the Pathways Program. He has connected with his peers within the program and has been an exceptional fundraiser for the Pathways Organization. He has excelled with customer service, working as a highly personable employee at the Dog Depot. He has also been an active participant in the Unified Sports Program, especially as one of the top performers on the soccer and basketball teams. Anthony brings a positive attitude, relentless work ethic, and cares greatly about other people and Rockland High School.

Zachary Solomon:

Zach is a National Honor Society student who has been actively involved in the Concert Band. He is a three-time recipient of the Music Achievement Award. He participated on the cross country team and swim team. Zach has shown an interest as a curious member of the astronomy club as well. Most impressive, Zach is an Eagle Scout. He completed a project this fall in which he cleaned out a messy closet filled with random marching music and built a shelving unit that matches pre-existing cabinets to store the marching music. The second part of his project was building a rolling cart that can store flipbooks for marching band and parade music, so students can easily store their music and keep it organized so it does not get lost. The final part of the project was emptying a storage unit that contained drama props, furniture, clothes, and equipment so he could build a big shelving unit.

Hunter Wardwell:

Hunter is a senior who has contributed significantly to the school’s athletic programs. He is a model student-athlete as he also takes his academics very seriously as an honors student. Hunter is a two sport varsity athlete competing on football and basketball teams. He is a captain, demonstrating exceptional leadership to younger teammates. In his free time, he volunteers as a Rockland Youth Football Coach.

Colin McKerrell:

Colin is an exceptional honor roll student who has been recognized as an AP Scholar with Honor. Athletically, Colin has participated in the wrestling and football teams. As a football player, Colin has been a leader on the team as a captain. Colin works part-time at Dairy Queen in Hanover as a food preparer.

The following seniors will be recognized next week and we will highlight their accomplishments at that time. Jessica Driscoll, Erin Gardner, Lauren Draicchio and Claudia Abouzeid.

Thank you Dr. Harrison, Ms. Kemp, and Ms. O’Brien for coordinating the event and the rewards given, and congratulations again to the RHS Top Dogs 2021.


Spirit Week will continue on Jan. 4 for Cohort B

Spirit Week for Cohort B will be this coming week: Jan. 4-8.

Greta Willis, Veritas Staff

Spirit Week is one of the many fun traditions students look forward to each year. But, as the already complicated school year continued in December, it fell under the “postponed” category. 

Originally,  this event was supposed to be split into two separate weeks for each cohort. Cohort A’s Spirit Week was able to happen last week.  Unfortunately for Cohort B, their week was the same week the high school had to switch back to full remote.

Now that the school has announced going back to hybrid mode, Cohort B will be back in school on Jan. 4 and will be able to participate in Spirit Week in the coming week.

Miku Yoshioka, a senior and member of SGC, shared her experience in bringing Spirit Week to life during this unprecedented time.

“Just like any other year, Spirit Week has always been hectic, from what days we wanted, to the participation of our student body.”

She added, “This year it was hard, due to the council having to be flexible with the pandemic. We made it so both cohorts are able to show their school spirit.”

Freshman Joey Gallagher commented on the freshmen class’ first high school experience. “I liked the groutfit day because it was nice to wear something comfortable. In the future I would like to see a sports or jersey day.”

Seniors from left to right: Gianna Gervasi, Meghan Hoblitzelle, Jaelyn Glavin, and Katelyn Fitzgerald showed their class colors during Cohort A’s Spirit Week. photo by Lauren Draicchio

Despite the setbacks, junior Gabriella Gambon was excited to show her spirit amidst the chaos. “I overall liked the Spirit Week days this year even though I didn’t participate in all of them. I feel that a lot of people enjoyed comfy day including myself. My favorite day of the week had to definitely be decades day. I don’t think a lot of people participated, but I personally liked it.”

She also said, “Character day was my least favorite day because I just didn’t want to dress up as a character. That’s just not my thing. I really wanted to do camouflage day, but sadly I don’t own any camouflage patterned clothing.” 

She concluded, “Class color day is always a classic and I love to see everyone with their class shirts, having school spirit!”

It has been difficult when every day is almost unpredictable, but the students at RHS have been working hard while maintaining a positive attitude through it all. 

Below are some photos courtesy of Lauren Draicchio and Twitter photos from Cohort A.

‘Tis the Season

December 21, 2020

Each year at this time the Rockland High School Band presents its annual Holiday Concert in our auditorium. While social distancing and the pandemic would not allow that to happen this year, the RHS Concert Band students found a way to bring us some holiday spirit with this virtual recording of “Let It Snow” in their video: “Tis the Season.”

These are our Concert Band students: Hugo DaSilva, Mia Gomes, Robert Ivil, Emma Krog, Kathleen Nee, Adam Pollard, Conor Quackenbush, William Robinson and Zachary Solomon.  John Piazza, RHS Band Director explained that the video was created by the students. He said, “The class recorded and filmed their parts.” Mr. Piazza then mixed and edited their performances.  The rendered product was sent to WRPS’ Dave Cable-Murphy who posted the final video on YouTube.

And here is their performance!

“A Medley of Monologues” Presented by Theatre Department

Dec. 2, 2020

-from post

Although this year looks a little different, there is one thing we can all agree upon – The Show Must Go On, or at least according to the Rockland High School Theatre Department.

This fall, Joanne White and Julia DiCanzio, directors of the RHS Drama team  came up with an idea to put together a production with the Drama Club students. Ms. White explained, “We needed to figure out a safe, manageable way to put together a production that still allowed students to be creative. We wanted to make it as supportive as possible for them with everything going on.”

Students had the option to choose or write their very own monologue. It took about three weeks to put together with virtual rehearsals, virtual meetings and recordings.   Christopher Burnieika of WRPS helped record it.

The final product is called “A Medley of Monologues.”   (Video link here)

Performers included:

Alex Anzivino as the Smoldering Spencer from “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle”

Elias Carbone performing The Circle of Life from “The Lion King”

Anthony DiNino wrote and performed a personal monologue – “The Multiplication Train”

Dillon Doyle crushed it as Buddy the Elf from the hit movie “Elf”

Callie Gillan performed a dramatic monologue from “True Crime”

McKenna Maher nailed it with her performance from “Pretty”

Fiona Overstreet performed a comedic monologue from “The First Dear Evan Hansen Letter”

Ben Pattison had us all laughing as Louis from “Hot Dogs”

Jonah Pishkin wrote and performed an inspirational monologue called “Fear, Chaos, Pain”

Luci Pumphrey presented a dramatic performance as Linda from “Pay Attention”

Cailin Sullivan closed the show with her dynamite performance as Lyndsey McElroy from the comedy show, “Two and a Half-Men.”

The students took the new challenge head-on and recorded an outstanding performance of “A Medley of Monologues.” Enjoy!

A Medley of Monologues

Directors Ms. White and Ms. DiCanzio

Get ready for Spirit Week


Student Government Council has announced that next week will begin a celebration of Spirit Week. The week of Dec. 7 – 11 will be for Cohort A and the following week, Dec. 14-18, will be for Cohort B. Principal Harrison is encouraging all, including faculty and staff to participate.

The first day will be Comfy Day/Groutfit* Day.  Check back to see photos of each day!

(*Groutfit means wearing outfits that are all gray in color!)


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