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Students take closer look at past two years with Class of 2023

by Drew C. Smith and Jeremiah Edwards/Staff Writers

Initial Reflections from the Writers:

Drew C. Smith – There was a rush of excitement when I first learned that we would be out of school an additional week following spring break. Of course, that additional week turned into a sprawling two months of uncertainty and restlessness that felt like it would turn into an eternity of Google Meets and nights spent up until the early hours of the next day. Was it fun to be out of school for essentially four-and-a-half months? It was fun in the same way that dessert is fun; every once in a while, I like to have dessert after dinner, but I do not want dessert for every meal. This fourth quarter has been my first full fourth quarter of my high school career; in my freshman year, I of course spent the entirety of my fourth quarter at home due to COVID-19, and my sophomore year, I broke my leg three weeks into the quarter and once again spent the rest of the fourth quarter at home. It’s nice to be back and in for my first full year of school. Socially, I’ve been way more engaged and it’s just nice to be able to actually reach the conclusion of a full school year, which I have not felt since eighth grade. And, knocking on wood, hopefully my senior year will be entirely uninterrupted. 

Jeremiah Edwards – To be honest, not going back to school after spring break made it feel like an extended summer, I really enjoyed that at the time. Though once school started, I was not ready at all. My love for school turned into dread and irritation. My sleeping schedule was so unhealthy to the point where I had no motivation to go to school. Of course, once the hybrid schedule was established it made things easier but I quickly learned that it was not beneficial to academic success. I’m glad things are returning to normal and that this fourth quarter has been my first full fourth quarter. I feel like I missed out on growing socially due to not having a full, normal, not virtual-driven school year. I’ve always felt that the fourth quarter is the best time of the year. That’s when my relationships with my peers have flourished and when I’m able to be the most engaged in my academics. Being able to finish out the school year normally has prevented me from losing connections that I value. I believe my senior year will be the absolute best year and I’ll be able to enjoy school the way I used to and experience things I’ve always wanted to. 

High school can be argued as being some of the most exciting or some of the most important years of one’s life. Though for students currently in high school, the past couple of years have been dreadful. How does the Class of 2023, at Greenfield Central High School, feel about their high school experience, so far, and how do they feel about their future at G-CHS? We (Drew and Jeremiah) sought to find this out and get direct answers from juniors, soon-to-be seniors, on this topic. We sat down with Preston Wise, Paige Rutledge, Michael Runions, Paisley Slunaker, and Cooper Cox to gather their thoughts on the shift into senior year and how they reflect on quarantine. 

Q: It has officially been over two years since the school year was cut short by the coronavirus. How do you reflect back on the two years and how has your perspective changed on quarantine?

A (Preston Wise): So, I think it’s weird to reflect on that I haven’t seen, ever since two years, that we went from not seeing anyone for a quarter, to then only seeing half the kids, and to then get everyone back with no masks. Looking back on it, it feels super quick, like we were just on top of it, but at the same time, going through it, it felt like forever. I feel like most of my sophomore year, thinking back on it, half the school was out for my time there.

A (Paige Rutledge): Well, I think it was a lot easier throughout quarantine, mostly because teachers just kind of gave up. And, I don’t think that anyone actually cared, but now that everyone is back, I feel like it’s a little harder to get back on track and do things, cause after so many years of not doing anything, no one cares.

A (Michael Runions): I reflect on the two years as a learning experience. I learned a lot about myself and I had to grow as a person, get out of my comfort zone of being at home. My perspective on quarantine was that it wasn’t too bad. I had a routine and I stuck by it every day. It was easy. 

A (Paisley Slunaker): My perspective really hasn’t changed because when it first started, I felt it was boring, and I still feel it was boring. 

A (Cooper Cox): During my freshman year, during fourth quarter in quarantine I really had no idea what to do when it came to online school. And I think most of us didn’t either; it was just too much to keep track of. So, I think the school handled it well when it came to grades. And, during our sophomore year when we had hybrid, I know it helped a lot to reduce the amount of COVID cases, but on the other hand lots of people were struggling mentally because of the isolation. So, in that regard I’m glad we’re fully back. 

Q: This is your first fully in-school fourth quarter, and it’s happening as a junior. How do you feel about that? 

A (Preston Wise): It feels weird. I mean, like freshman year, there wasn’t much I missed out on because for freshman you don’t go to prom, obviously you’re not graduating. I don’t feel like I missed out on much, other than that transition into being a sophomore. I feel like with this year, especially though, it’s going to hit me that I’m going to be a senior.

A (Paige Rutledge): It’s really stressful actually. I have a final in every single class and it’s kind of just cramming all of the information in the last three weeks. It’s very stressful. 

A (Michael Runions): It’s good to see progress and to know that things are continuing to become normal again.

A (Paisley Slunaker): I feel I have missed out on a lot of activities and what high school is really about, the social part, spending time with people. 

A (Cooper Cox): I don’t really mind that this is the first time we’re getting a full end of the year, as juniors, I’m just glad that this school year has felt mostly normal. There’s no doubt it’s not a normal high school year, and I think that I did miss out on quite a lot. But there’s no way I can get that back, so I move on. I loaded my senior year with classes so I really do hope we can stay in person, because it’s much harder to focus outside of school.

Q: Do you feel that you have missed out on the full high school experience? Do you feel like you have been cheated out of valuable time with friends and classmates?

A (Preston Wise): Like I said, before, I feel like I didn’t miss out on much freshman year. Sophomore year they didn’t have homecoming or prom, so I do feel like I missed out on homecoming. But yeah, only seeing the kids on one half of the alphabet, it was tough having friends on the other half, because I didn’t get to spend time with them and sort of drifted away. 

A (Paige Rutledge): I mean, a little bit. Since I’m in theater, we usually have traditions where we go out and hang, but for like the past two years- this is the first year we could actually go out and be with each other, to get that “high school experience.”

A (Michael Runions): I feel like I haven’t missed out on the full high school experience. I’ve spent a lot of time with classmates and friends, even with all of the restrictions. 

A (Paisley Slunaker): Yes, kinda. 

Q: How do you feel about senior year, now that, hopefully, it will not be complicated by COVID-19 restrictions?

A (Preston Wise): I feel pretty good about it. I feel like it will be a pretty solid ending to my high school career. Everyone’s back, I feel like it will be like a normal high school experience.

A (Paige Rutledge): Actually, I feel a little bit better about it, my senior year should be pretty breezy, cause I got nothing to really do, just two more classes. If everything goes well, minus the COVID, I think it should be fine. 

A (Michael Runions): I feel that my senior year is gonna be the best one. I’m happy to have a full year without any issues with COVID-19. It’s gonna be a fun last year.

A (Paisley Slunaker): I think it will be fully packed with as much stuff as I can do, cause I did not get much in the previous years. 

Q: Finally, what advice would you give to the underclassmen and students coming into the high school? Would you encourage them to enjoy their time in the school or would you tell them something else?

A (Preston Wise): Don’t be stupid, enjoy your time here, but don’t be reckless and ignorant. Just respect the rules and have fun. 

A (Paige Rutledge): I would tell them please don’t be annoying. I don’t mean it in a mean way, but if you want people to respect you, don’t start out by being annoying. Just be with your friends and have your fun, but just don’t be annoying. 

A (Michael Runions): Underclassmen: have fun and enjoy every day, because you never know if you’ll be taken out for a very long time. Enjoy your time in school and outside of school like at football games, events, or dances. 

A (Paisley Slunaker): I would say do as much as you can to get involved and join clubs, get active. 

A (Cooper Cox): I would suggest joining a club or sport after school. They really help when it comes to building relationships with people and I regret not doing it.

The Class of 2023 experienced a not-so-normal high school life, facing challenges like quarantine, hybrid schedules, and masks. It seems, for now, they have high hopes and a positive outlook for their senior year after facing an obstacle along the way. They certainly have much more gratitude, now, for being in person at school. We (again, Drew and Jeremiah) are optimistic about the future and look forward to a (knock on wood) normal senior year. 

Profile: JAG Coordinator Turner helps students with job skills

by Jeremiah Edwards and Alex Smith/Staff Writers

Photo Caption: JAG students check prospective job-seeking students into the job fair on April 22.

Mr. Darren Turner shares his experiences as JAG Coordinator 

Q: How long have you been teaching JAG (Jobs for America’s Graduates)?

A: This is my first year teaching JAG.  I began this position on July 5, 2021.

Q: Who was the most influential teacher in your life and why?

A: Looking back, I had many influential teachers throughout my school years.  But, the most influential people in my life were my parents and my mentor, former Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club, Jim Andrews.

Q: What’s your favorite part of being the JAG teacher?

A: JAG has given me the opportunity to work with juniors and seniors and, hopefully, pass on information that they will be able to utilize throughout their life.

Q: How do you balance your work and home life?

A: In the past, my career was pretty much my life.  By that I mean that I could not go anywhere without someone asking me a question that referred to my job and that I was basically “on call” 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Since I left that career, I have had a much better balance in regards to work vs home.  When I am home these days, I enjoy my home life.  Of course, there are still times that I do work on items while at home. That is the nature of the beast in these type of positions.  

Q: What do you do outside of teaching JAG?

A: When I am not working on JAG, I spend the majority of my time at home with Michelle and our two rescue dogs, Bella and Jasper. and my daughter, Kayla, when she is around.  I enjoy working on puzzle books, watching sports and movies, and going to auctions.

Q: What is your least favorite part of being the JAG teacher?

A: Hands down, it is all the reports that I am required to complete for JAG and the state.  I would much prefer to use my time with the students.

Q: What is the most memorable moment in your teaching experience?

A: That moment has not happened yet – it will be when the seniors I currently have, graduate and move on to start their careers.

Q: Teaching can be a stressful job. What makes it worth it?

A: Honestly, I handle stress very well.  I had a lot of experience in my previous career in learning early on how to handle stress and not let it affect me.  I enjoy seeing my students work to improve themselves.

Q: What do you want kids to remember about you?

A: I do not necessarily want them to remember me.  It is more important that they remember the discussions we had over the career and life competencies we covered.  The students know that they will always be able to contact me for any advice or assistance they may need once they graduate.

Q: How have you handled teaching JAG during a pandemic?

A: I was fortunate that I really did not have to teach during the majority of the pandemic like most teachers.

Q: What do you want kids to learn in JAG? What’s your number one goal?

A: Students have 37 competencies dealing with career and life issues that are covered in JAG I.  We have many important competencies that are covered, but the most important to me is not actually one of them.  My number one goal for every student is to know that they can have the career that they want to have – it might take a lot of effort, a lot of time, and a lot of preparation. (Hopefully, they use the lessons learned in JAG to find that career.)

If you find the career that you want and it makes you happy, then you will be a success.  Success is not always fame or fortune; success is determined by each individual’s own definition.

Q: How do you keep the kids engaged?

A: I hope that I keep them engaged by changing up their class activities.  

We have defined times in which I lead and times in which the students lead.  Students are given many opportunities to lead (entire class or small group), to give their input and ideas and to collaborate on projects.

Q: What is your favorite lesson or activity to do with the kids and why?

A: My favorite activity with students is any time we have discussions, no matter the topic.  This is two-fold. I can actually find out if the lessons we worked on actually sink in and it allows me the opportunity to learn more about each student.

A couple students share their experiences with JAG and Mr. Turner.

What is your favorite thing about JAG with Mr. Turner?

Jonah Hord: Learning world problems and solutions 

Megan Clark: I love how helpful Turner is. Asking him for help, even if it’s 15 times, is super easy!

What does Mr. Turner do to help you learn?

Jonah Hord: He talks with us personally, to make sure we know 

Megan Clark: Turner is patient and doesn’t mind explaining how things work. He does fun games and lets us run the class sometimes.

What is your least favorite thing about JAG with Mr. Turner?

Jonah Hord: Learning all the finance stuff, i find math boring 

Megan Clark: I honesty don’t have a least favorite thing about his class. If I had to choose, it might be the deadlines. He’s understanding though, so it’s never really the worst thing about that class!

What does Mr. Turner do to make JAG fun?

Jonah Ward: He’s gets involved, makes things more personal, makes it feel like its a student to student interaction instead of a teacher to student interaction 

Megan Clark: To make class fun, he lets us lead to discussion. He also gets us involved in interactive games and away from the tablet. It’s refreshing to not be staring at a screen for an hour and a half.

Tell me a memorable story about JAG with Mr. Turner.

Jonah Hord: Probably when we went to the students in action leadership program, it was a lot of fun, we did breakout sessions and games 

Megan Clark: My favorite story is probably when we had to analyze bigger vs. smaller pictures. We did a guessing game where was had to figure out how they knew what color we choose, and I got super into it!!

What will you remember the most about JAG with Mr. Turner after you graduate?

Jonah Hord: The fun we had in the classroom. 

Megan Clark: I’ll probably remember how understanding he was. I’ve had a class with him every year for the past 4 years of being here. I grew very fond of coming to him with most of my problems. He’s not difficult to get along with, and he is super chill. I’ll definitely be missing morning meetings with him and the JAG association.

What has Mr. Turner taught you about in JAG this year?

Jonah Hord: I learned how to write a resume, cover letter, and reference sheet. 

Megan Clark: Turner definitely helped me learn more about communication and hard work this year. If there was anyone in this school who held me accountable it was him. I looked forward to his class, and I would recommend him in a heartbeat. I learned how to compose myself without losing my cool is bad situations, and I learned how to set deadlines for myself and how to stick to them.

Senior spotlight: memorable moments, achievements, looking ahead

by Alex Smith and Jeremiah Edwards/Staff Writers

How has your senior year been so far? What stands out to you about it?

Brynn Elliott: It has been great! I think I have made more memories than I ever have before this year.

A.J. Springman: It was really fast, honestly. What stood out to me is how emotional the final choir concert was. I was expecting me and my friends to be in absolute tears hugging each other.

Kathryn Root: Stressful but the most meaningful, the most emotional.

Hunter Reed: It has probably been the best school year of my life. There has been so many fun events that I’ve been to.

What are you looking forward to in the last few weeks of school? Why?

Brynn Elliott: I’m looking forward to senior brunch, I think it will be really fun.

A.J. Springman: Getting closer to graduation

Kathryn Root: Feeling like I officially accomplished a milestone. I’m less stressed than I have ever been and feel proud.

Hunter Reed: Getting out of here.

Are you ready for high school to be over? Why or why not?

Brynn Elliott: Yes I am, I’m just ready to get away from some of these people and start a new chapter in my life.

A.J. Springman: I am but I’m not. I just wanna stick in madrigal and legacy with Mr. Grazzard but in the other hand I’m ready to get out into the world and pursue my dream of acting.

Kathryn Root: Absolutely! I can’t wait to go to college and be more independent. I’m so excited for moving and exploring.

Hunter Reed: YES! Freedom!

What are some memorable events during high school that will stick with you even after graduation?

Brynn Elliott: Definitely all the shows I have been in.

A.J. Springman: The last choir concert and how emotional it was and probably he goofy moments I had with teachers.

Kathryn Root: Drama Club and Choir. The family atmosphere and community in both groups has given me life lessons and irreplaceable memories.

Hunter Reed: Choir concerts, prom, madrigal dinners, homecoming stuff.

How did COVID affect your high school life?

Brynn Elliott: It was a lot harder to get things done because of all the distractions at home.

A.J. Springman: It made my grades plummet

Kathryn Root: I don’t remember two years of it really well but on the academic side, I remember the plays and concerts.

Hunter Reed: Choir concerts, prom, madrigal dinners, homecoming stuff.

How did you feel about the COVID mask mandates coming to a sudden halt?

Brynn Elliott: I was pretty okay with it

A.J. Springman: I honestly couldn’t care much

Kathryn Root: Finally! Hallelujah! This is what life was like!

Hunter Reed: (The mask mandates) made junior year miserable for me.

What do you wish you could’ve done differently during high school?

Brynn Elliott: I wish I would have done more with friends. I used to not find time for them and I wish I would have.

A.J. Springman: I wish I tried to enjoy my time in high school more.

Kathryn Root: Stress less and sometimes not care so much about the small things.

Hunter Reed: Getting better grades I suppose.

What are some achievements that you’re proud of? What else are you looking to achieve?

Brynn Elliott: I’m proud that I was apart of our theatre department. I want to achieve my goal of making it through college.

A.J. Springman: Being casted into a TV show, getting a trophy for legacy. I’m looking forward to being casted into my productions

Kathryn Root: Being a Tech Head and Stage Manager of Drama Club. I can’t wait to keep building.

Hunter Reed: I’ve made so many friends and I’ve became far more popular than I was in high school, so I’m definitely proud of that.

What are your plans for life after high school? Are you excited about it? Why or why not?

Brynn Elliott: I am going to be a musical theatre major at Oakland University and I am so so excited. I can’t wait to meet so many new people and start living independently!

A.J. Springman: I ship out for basic training in Fort Leonard wood. Honestly it’s alright

Kathryn Root: I’m going to the University of Dayton to study Civil Engineering. I will then later focus on Structural Engineering. I can’t wait to go do labs and literally break and build stuff all day.

Hunter Reed: I plan on forming a rock/metal band, and/or I plan on getting into wrestling.

GC admin looks back at ups, downs of momentous year

by Kaydence Ham/Staff Writer

             As the end of the school year approaches swiftly, a look back at all GC’s progress seems appropriate, especially after the chaos of the pandemic. The masks, social distancing, and contact tracing have all slowly come to an end. This year was the first semi-normal year since the 2019-2020 school year. GCHS had Prom, Homecoming, field trips, award programs, and other extracurricular activities reintroduced for the first time in two years. 

School administrators and staff have had a difficult job navigating the past couple of years. As this time period is coming to an end, it would be reasonable to address these issues with the school administrators. The biggest issue over the past few years has been the pandemic. Dr. Olin said, “As the superintendent of schools, I believe it was (and still is) my job to ensure that our schools were as safe as possible for our students and staff.  Therefore, my team and I were in constant communication with the Hancock County Health Department and the Indiana Department of Health officials to help us craft our policies and procedures to navigate the tumultuous waters of the pandemic.  I felt as though we were constantly walking the tightrope between that which was too restrictive and that which was too passive.  We did not always get it right, and we definitely did not make everyone happy.  That being said, I am grateful for the grace that most of our students, staff, and families exhibited throughout the year.” 

Coming out of the pandemic has definitely brought about change, as the district tries to adjust to some sort of normal. Mr. Cary stated, “It really seemed like two different school years: one in the pandemic and one after the pandemic.  We wanted to prioritize the health of our staff and our students, while also keeping an eye on the learning loss our students experienced during the pandemic.” Mrs. Coleman agreed. She said, “I really see this year in two different years. We have August to February where we still had to deal with COVID, the absences and all the craziness that the pandemic brought us. I have loved the year since March! I have gotten in more classrooms, gotten to interact more with teachers and students and it has just been a different atmosphere. I think the pandemic has taught us all about perseverance, patience and life. We’ve had to rely so heavily on family and friends, and educators.” 

Although GC has had a very divided year due to the pandemic, students and administration have managed to sneak in some highlights this year. Mr. Cary stated, “There were quite a few highlights for the year: Band winning State again, having Prom for the first time in a few years, the first day of school with the Senior Turnaround, etc.  It wasn’t a normal year, but we had a lot of normalcy along the way.”

Dr. Olin also discussed some important highlights for the district. He said, “Winning back-to-back state championships in marching band was the most exciting moment for me.  Seeing 150+ students coming together to perform something that is creative and beautiful never gets old. Being told that Eden Elementary School had the third highest math passing rate in the state. Receiving the support of our community to build the auditorium was also quite special. Receiving the Family Friendly designation from the Indiana Department of Education for all eight schools was very rewarding. And of course…Dropping the mask mandate and returning to normalcy in the spring semester was definitely a highlight as well.  Seeing our students at Prom for the first time in three years was quite special.”  

GC has also had some challenges along the way. Dr. Olin stated, “We had a number of challenges filling teacher vacancies due to absenteeism during the pandemic.  It is our goal to provide high quality education in the classroom each and every day.  That was difficult to fulfill when we could not find the substitute teachers that we needed.” Many teachers even stepped in themselves and gave up their prep periods to help fill in a teacher’s position.

When asked about other challenges, Mr. Cary said, “I think the easy answer is COVID and the masks/contact tracing.  The other big answer is that we had one less administrator after Mr. Beal retired.  That meant a lot of work on the 3 of us instead of spread out amongst the four of us.  At the end of the day, we prioritized what we could and made the most of the time we had.” Mr. Beal was with GC for 23 years, most of those at the high school before his retirement. 

As the 2021-2022 school year comes to an end, GC is looking forward to many things next year. Mr. Cary says, “I am looking forward to adding another assistant principal to our office. We just hired Mr. Steve Wherry, who is the principal at Knightstown High School.  He is going to make us so much better, and we are going to tackle some initiatives that have been put on the back burner during the pandemic.  I also am looking forward to more normalcy than we already have.” 

Seniors will be graduating June 5 and Mr. Cary wants them to know: “I hope they enjoy the last few weeks and make us proud in whatever they do moving forward.” Mrs. Coleman also had an encouraging piece of advice. “My advice for seniors is to never stop learning and growing. Whatever path you take next year, have confidence in that path. College isn’t for everyone but be sure you never give up on learning. Learn how to change a tire. Learn how to cook a recipe. Learn a new language. Just keep learning. And, don’t forget your roots. Be proud to be a GC graduate and come back and visit often!” 

Making it ‘Magical’: GC drama presents Cinderella with a ‘flair

By: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Cinderella performances are April 28, 29, 30 at 7pm and May 1 at 2pm. Purchase tickets at www.gcdrama.org Photo Credit: https://www.theatermania.com/shows/new-york-city-theater/broadway/cinderella_194249

Cinderella has been featured in many schools and universities across the country and it’s a challenge to present the old story in a different way. GC Drama’s cast and crew proposes to put a modern spin on it.

Brynn Elliott, 12, playing Cinderella, talked about how she plans to make the musical a unique production. She said, “I think our goal for the musical is to make it magical. We all want the story of Cinderella to seem like you pulled it right out of a movie, fairy godmother and all. We want people to be stunned by the actors, but to also be stunned by the whimsical vibe that the backstage crew created with costumes, makeup, lights, paint, and of course our sets. It’ll be an amazing show, and I couldn’t be any happier to end my theatre career at GC with it!”

Zeke Holden, 11, playing Prince Topher, discussed how he plans to make the musical a unique production. He said, “I think that each individual person has a good specific vision for how they want their character to be and sound. And it’s really been entertaining to watch myself and others figure it out.” Angel Murphy, also 11, playing an Older Woman, said, “We are going to make this production unique by put our own flair on the show.”

Elliot talked about what she thinks of being in her last production of high school. She said, “I’m really sad. This theatre program has done so much for me, and it’s really upsetting that I have to leave the department and everyone I know and love. We’re all really close, so it just makes things ten times harder.” She also discussed what the biggest things she has learned by being in drama are. She said, “I have learned patience and cooperation. You have to be patient to know what is going on in a production, especially when you’re not onstage. And just being able to take notes and do what the director says is a skill that theatre often teaches you. I have also learned to love everyone no matter what and I’m just so happy with everything our program has taught me and all of the memories I made!”

Elliott discussed how being in various productions for GC has helped her learn and grow and what memories she will take with her of GC drama when she graduates this year. She said, “Being in productions at the high school has helped me grow as a person, and as an actress. Mrs. Voigt has really helped me discover who I am as an actress, and she has influenced my personality a lot. I don’t what I would do without her. I have so many fond memories with this program, and I can’t wait to make even more before I leave.” She also talked about her plans outside of high school. She said, “I am pursuing acting outside of high school. I am going into musical theatre because it is my passion and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else with my life.”

Holden talked about what it means to him to be one of the leads. He said, “To get one of the leads in the musical is absolutely huge for me! I think that being on stage and acting and singing with my castmates has really opened up my eyes to how much I love performing.”

Holden commented on what his individual goals as well as cast goals for this production are. He said, “My biggest goal for the show right now is to establish my own flair for theater seeing as I am very new to it.”

Murphy talked about what her individual goals as well as cast goals for this production are: “To make it fun and try to do our best.” As for Elliott, she said, “My goal is for everyone to walk away from the show happy. I think as a whole group we just want everyone to be blown away by our whole production and for it to be remembered as one of the best shows in GC history.”

Murphy discussed what she is looking forward to the most: “The performances of course but spending that time with the cast is so much fun.” As for Holden, “As of right now, I’m really looking forward to the response from the community when they see the show.” Elliott mentioned what she is looking forward to the most, “Honestly, I think I’m really looking forward to my costume changes that are onstage. My dress will transform around me and I think that it’ll be really cool.”

Elliott mentioned what songs she enjoyed the most: “I really enjoy the songs ‘Do I Love You Because You’re Beautiful?’ and ‘In My Own Little Corner.’ They’re just really pretty songs and they’re so much fun to sing, I really love them.” Holden said, “My favorite song would have to either be ‘Me Who Am I’ or ‘Do I Love You Because You’re Beautiful?’. I love the first one because it really is MY song and it’s a song that has plenty of room for improv and comedy, and the other song is just such a beautiful duet between Brynn and I.” Murphy talked about what song she enjoyed the most: “‘Stepsisters Lament’ because it is really funny.”

Of course, every production is not without challenges. Holden talked about what has been the biggest obstacle during the process for him and how he is working to overcome it. He said, “The hardest part of being in the show for me, is trying to keep it out of EVERY conversation I have! I’m very passionate about this show and I have enjoyed it so much.” Murphy said, “My social anxiety is definitely really hard with so many people.” Elliott commented, “It was really really hard for me to find Cinderella’s character. I never realized how difficult it would be to be a character everyone knows and loves, so it made me want to not mess up. I finally realized that I needed to be more myself than looking at it as a role. I’m way more comfortable now, and I’m very confident with my character.”

Murphy commented on her favorite part of the show, “Definitely when we are in the town spinning and dancing.” Elliott talked about her favorite line in the show. She said, “My favorite I think is one of the Prince’s. He says, ‘She’s my lady’. It’s my favorite because the way Zeke says it is absolutely hysterical and makes me laugh every time.” For Holden, he said, “Right now I’m torn between two lines where after I slay an evil giant and save the day, I shout ‘I wish I was doing something more important with my life!’ I also really enjoy the line ‘I don’t even know your name!’ after a kiss scene.”

For Holden, the magic of the theater is real. He said, “I will definitely be in future shows! This experience of Cinderella has been so much fun and has really given me a love for performance.”

Walker Career Center provides vocational path for students

By: Tyler Young/Staff writer

Walker Career Center is an institution that you can take for certain curriculum that you want to take in the future that your high school does not offer. Many students go there for career paths that they wish to pursue in life and there are many places to go for those classes.

Devin Evanoff, 11, is one of those students who go to Walker for their future career and interests. Evanoff takes an aviation class at Walker. He said he takes it because he’s always had an interest in flying planes and flying in planes. Evanoff said that when you go to Walker the class you would want to take is only offered in certain semesters. Aviation, for example, is only offered in the second semester. Evanoff talked about a daily walk through about his day with high school and Walker. “My day doesn’t start till 9:00 a.m. so I miss the first and most of the second block at the high school. The class is from 9:00-10:45 except on Fridays. And once I finish at 10:45 I go to the high school to finish the day.” 

Evanoff said what he does in the class is interesting and interactive. “I actually got to fly in a plane and fly the plane. It was really cool.” He also talked about the best part about going to Walker. “I don’t have to wake up early for an 8:30 class and I get to learn about my future career.” He also mentioned the interactiveness of aviation. “It’s very hands-on and we’re always doing something that doesn’t require writing down notes.” Evanoff talked about who to recommend the class to. “I’d say anybody that likes to get out of their comfort zone and just about anybody can take the class.” 

Evanoff said that the aviation class is only one semester of regular school but it also takes time out of his Spring Break. He talked about where he wants this class to take him in life. “I want to be a commercial pilot for American or Delta Airlines.” Lastly, he talked about where he goes for Walker Career Center class. “I go to Mt. Vernon High School, but there’s a location in (Warren Central township) as well.” 

Abby Morgan, 11, is another one of the students who is involved in the Walker Career path. She is studying Criminal Justice because she has always been invested into true crime and thought it would be fun to have a class not offered at a high school.

Morgan talked about what they’ve learned in class. “In my class, we’ve learned how to solve crime scenes, file police reports, handcuffing, fingerprinting, and a lot more.”

She also talked about her daily schedule. “Every day I wake up at 5:30 to get to Walker by 7:15. Then my class ends at 9:10 and I either go home until my third block starts, or I go to the library and work on any homework I may have. After that, my day is normal and I have my third and fourth block here at Greenfield.”

NATIONAL WOMEN’S MONTH PROFILE: ALBION FELLOWS BACON

Photo caption: Albion Fellows Bacon is referred to as Indiana’s Municipal Housekeeper.

By Jeremiah Edwards/Staff Writer

The Progressive Era, from the 1890s to the 1920s, was an era of intense social and political reform aimed at making progress towards a better society. During this era issues such as labor rights, women’s suffrage, economic reform, environmental protections, public housing reform, and the welfare of the poor were all addressed. Indiana had its own reformer, someone who wanted to better the spaces people lived in, a woman who would become Indiana’s Municipal Housekeeper: Albion Fellows Bacon.

Bacon was an American reformer and writer. She’s largely remembered for her efforts to improve public housing standards. Bacon was very involved in tenement reform and was vital in the passage of legislation to improve housing conditions in Indiana in 1909, 1913, and 1917. 

 Bacon was born on April 8, 1865, in Evansville Indiana. She was the youngest daughter of Reverend Albion Fellows and Mary Fellows and a younger sister to writer Annie Fellows Johnston. 

After the passing of Bacon’s father a few weeks before her birth, Albion’s mother Mary returned to her hometown of McCutchanville, Indiana. Bacon would attribute her early life in a small, rural town as her motivation for her efforts to achieve urban reform. 

Bacon would go on to graduate from Evansville High School in 1883, she would then work for her sister, Annie Fellows Johnston, who would become a professional writer, as her secretary during her tour in Europe. 

On October 11, 1888, Bacon would marry Hillary Bacon, the owner of Woolworth’s shop in Evansville. The couple would have four children together. 

At the turn of the century, Bacon would become very concerned about the effects of industrialization and urbanization. Her main interest was improving living conditions in Evansville. Bacon then became active in her community; she volunteered as a “friendly visitor” for local charities. She helped organize a Flower Mission group, which donated and distributed flowers to poor working girls.  She formed an Anti-Tuberculosis League that would help with preventing the development of tuberculosis, and also a Working Girls’ Association, that helped young women that were working in factories and mills. The association would later affiliate itself with the YWCA (Young Women’s Christian Association) in Evansville. Bacon was also a part of the Monday Night Club, a group of influential individuals interested in charitable work, her focus being its housing committee. 

Bacon showed her dedication and determination to achieve her goals by attending every session of the Indiana General Assembly from 1909 and 1917 due to her agreement with the Indianapolis Commercial Club. The Indianapolis Commercial Club would sponsor her legislation if she attended sessions of the Indiana General Assembly. During her time attending these assemblies, Bacon would garnish support for her legislation from other groups.

Even after achieving her primary goal of establishing a state-wide  law, Bacon would continue working as a social welfare activist. In 1917 she became chair of the Child Welfare Committee, a part of the Women’s Section of the Indiana State Council of Defense. She would then work on the passage of school attendance laws and establish a juvenile probation system.

An organization was named in her honor, Albion Fellows Bacon Center, located in Evansville. The organization currently provides such things as residential and non-residential services, community outreach, primary abuse prevention, sexual assault help, legal advocacy, as well as children’s and crisis response programs.

Bacon would die of heart failure on December 10, 1933, at her home in Evansville. She is praised as a symbol of the housing reform movement and Evansville’s best known and most loved woman. 

Sources:

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Albion-Fellows-Bacon

National Women’s Month Profile: Albion Fellows Bacon

Photo caption: Albion Fellows Bacon is referred to as Indiana’s Municipal Housekeeper.

By Jeremiah Edwards

The Progressive Era, from the 1890s to the 1920s, was an era of intense social and political reform aimed at making progress towards a better society. During this era issues such as labor rights, women’s suffrage, economic reform, environmental protections, public housing reform, and the welfare of the poor were all addressed. Indiana had its own reformer, someone who wanted to better the spaces people lived in, a woman who would become Indiana’s Municipal Housekeeper: Albion Fellows Bacon.

Bacon was an American reformer and writer. She’s largely remembered for her efforts to improve public housing standards. Bacon was very involved in tenement reform and was vital in the passage of legislation to improve housing conditions in Indiana in 1909, 1913, and 1917. 

 Bacon was born on April 8, 1865, in Evansville Indiana. She was the youngest daughter of Reverend Albion Fellows and Mary Fellows and a younger sister to writer Annie Fellows Johnston. 

After the passing of Bacon’s father a few weeks before her birth, Albion’s mother Mary returned to her hometown of McCutchanville, Indiana. Bacon would attribute her early life in a small, rural town as her motivation for her efforts to achieve urban reform. 

Bacon would go on to graduate from Evansville High School in 1883, she would then work for her sister, Annie Fellows Johnston, who would become a professional writer, as her secretary during her tour in Europe. 

On October 11, 1888, Bacon would marry Hillary Bacon, the owner of Woolworth’s shop in Evansville. The couple would have four children together. 

At the turn of the century, Bacon would become very concerned about the effects of industrialization and urbanization. Her main interest was improving living conditions in Evansville. Bacon then became active in her community; she volunteered as a “friendly visitor” for local charities. She helped organize a Flower Mission group, which donated and distributed flowers to poor working girls.  She formed an Anti-Tuberculosis League that would help with preventing the development of tuberculosis, and also a Working Girls’ Association, that helped young women that were working in factories and mills. The association would later affiliate itself with the YWCA (Young Women’s Christian Association) in Evansville. Bacon was also a part of the Monday Night Club, a group of influential individuals interested in charitable work, her focus being its housing committee. 

Bacon showed her dedication and determination to achieve her goals by attending every session of the Indiana General Assembly from 1909 and 1917 due to her agreement with the Indianapolis Commercial Club. The Indianapolis Commercial Club would sponsor her legislation if she attended sessions of the Indiana General Assembly. During her time attending these assemblies, Bacon would garnish support for her legislation from other groups.

Even after achieving her primary goal of establishing a state-wide  law, Bacon would continue working as a social welfare activist. In 1917 she became chair of the Child Welfare Committee, a part of the Women’s Section of the Indiana State Council of Defense. She would then work on the passage of school attendance laws and establish a juvenile probation system.

An organization was named in her honor, Albion Fellows Bacon Center, located in Evansville. The organization currently provides such things as residential and non-residential services, community outreach, primary abuse prevention, sexual assault help, legal advocacy, as well as children’s and crisis response programs.

Bacon would die of heart failure on December 10, 1933, at her home in Evansville. She is praised as a symbol of the housing reform movement and Evansville’s best known and most loved woman. 

Sources:

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Albion-Fellows-Bacon

Profile: Indiana’s first african american female superior court judge

by Jeremiah Edwards/Staff Writer

A future full of outstanding achievements and breakthroughs was unknowingly made on June 29, 1943 with the birth of Indiana’s first African American female Superior Court Judge, Zilthia Mae Perkins Jimison. Jimison’s life would be a canvas for equality and change. Her voice and attitude would be the light for many then and now. 

At an early age Jimison had developed her beliefs and knew what she wanted to fight for. She wasn’t going to let anything stand in her way. Jimison’s parents didn’t believe in limitations and continued to reinforce that idea. Jimison believed that anything she put her mind to she could accomplish. This mindset would prove to be good for Jimison, as at many points in her life she would smash ceilings. 

In 1963, Jimison would graduate from high school and enter Indiana Central Business college. While working towards her degree she would be working at Apex Finance Center. During this time Jimison would marry the love of her life Robert M. Jimison, Sr, a Union that would go on to last for 43 years. After graduating from business school Mae wanted to further her education, so both her and her husband entered Indiana State University.

Jimison’s time at ISU is nothing short of special. Her leadership skills would prove to help provide and maintain a cultural for African Americans at ISU. Jimison was active in the Black Student Union, first as a member and then as the prime minister in 1972. Jimison’s biggest accomplishment as prime minister was her fight to realize the Afro American Cultural Center. Through her leadership and no nonsense attitude she was able to convince the President of the urgency of the AACC.

In the years following her time at ISU, Jimison would go on to pass the Indiana Bar in 1977 and went into private practice. Jimison would soon rise up the ranks and emerge as an expectational trial attorney. Years later, Jimison served on the Indianapolis City-Council from 1992-1995, with the spirit of giving back to her community. Then in 1995, she took a massive stride and became a mayoral candidate in Indianapolis. Running as a Democrat candidate against Stephen Goldsmith. Jimison was the first African American to win an Indianapolis mayoral primary. Even though Jimison fell short of the required votes for victory, she triumphed in the ways of history, with her stellar campaign, her candidacy would pave the way for future African American mayoral candidates in the city.

In 1988, Jimison was appointed as superior court judge by Republican Governor Robert D. Orr, becoming the first black woman to serve as a judge on the Marion Superior Court. She served admirably from 1988 to 1990. Then in 1996, in a historic election, Jimison was elected to the Marion Superior Court bench and served for six years. This extraordinary achievement would pave the way for other women to enter judiciary in Indiana.

Jimison would be recognized for her outstanding efforts through awards. She would be rewarded with The Distinguished Alumni Award from Indiana State University and the State of Indiana Sagamore of the Wabash Awarded presented to her by former Governor Joe Kernan.

Jimison’s ceiling smashing achievements opened up the door for all those that followed her. Jimison is pioneer, her story deserves to be shared. Jimison was taught to not believe in limitations. If there were limitations, she ignored them. She made her own rules. 

Profile: Students describe Voelz as “patient,” creator of “great conversations”

By: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Mrs. Krysha Voelz, English and Film Literature teacher, helps Chelsea Adair, 9, with her assignment in English 9. Photo Credit: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Mrs. Krysha Voelz, English and Film Literature teacher, has recently been voted Teacher of the Year for GCHS by her peers. Voelz, who has been teaching English for 8 years at GC, talked about what makes teaching worth all the stress, all the grading, planning, and overall time involved. She said, “It is worth it whenever I see a student feel accomplished and proud of his/her efforts.” 

Voelz mentioned several positive aspects of being an English teacher. She said, “I enjoy multiple aspects of it. I really enjoy forming relationships with teens and watching them mature socially, intellectually, and emotionally throughout high school. I also LOVE analyzing literature with students who discover new meaning and have those ‘Aha moments’!” 

Katlyn Garner, 11, discussed what her favorite thing about Film Literature with Voelz is. She said, “She is a good teacher; she’s really friendly. She really likes to talk about films and it’s nice to talk to her about that sort of stuff.” 

McKenzie Bell, 9, talked about her favorite aspect of English with Voelz. She said, “My favorite thing about Mrs. Voelz is how caring she is about her students’ education and our feelings. She also makes eye contact [with us] when explaining things which shows she’s genuinely communicating.”

Voelz mentioned how she has handled teaching English, Film Literature, and F111, a college composition class, during a pandemic. She said, “It has been extremely challenging. I have had to let some things go and allow myself the same ‘grace’ I give to others. On the flip side, I have discovered new teaching strategies and have added [them] to my ‘wheelhouse.’ “

Bell talked about what Voelz does to help her learn. She said, “Something she does to help me learn is check in occasionally to make sure I’m on track.” Garner discussed what Voelz does to help her learn. She said, “She’s very patient, she’s great at explaining things and creates good conversations.”

Voelz talked about what teachers or mentors that she follows on social media and why. She said, “I chuckle at this question because I am not one for using social media much. However, I do follow one English teacher, Laura Randazzo, on YouTube and Teachers Pay Teachers. She is a high school English teacher about my age who creates fabulous lessons for her students. She also makes some entertaining videos. She is my idol!” She also mentioned who the most influential teacher in her life was and why. She said, “The teacher who impacted me the most was my high school English teacher, Mrs. Barbara Taylor. She was my teacher during my freshman year as well as my senior year. She was tough, funny, and inspired a love for the classics. I was first exposed to classics such as The Iliad and The Odyssey as well as works by Shakespeare in her room.”

Garner further commented on Voelz, “I’ve only had her for a short period of time but she’s just a really good teacher.” Bell told a memorable story about Voelz: “I was struggling with my grades and she noticed so she called me up and talked to me about it and offered to help me which no other teacher has done before.” Voelz discussed memorable moments in her teaching career. She said, “There are so many; however, I am always moved when I receive a card or an email from a student, years after I have had him/her in class, to thank me for making a difference in his/her life.”

Bell talked about what Voelz does to make English class fun. She said, “Something she does to make class fun is letting us work with friends.” As for Film Lit, Garner said, “Like I said, she’s very passionate about films and talking about films and there are good conversations.”

Voelz discussed how she balances her work and home life. She said, “This is tough, as I haven’t fully achieved this balance. It is a juggling act, for sure. Like most teachers, I take a lot home with me. This includes grading, planning, and responding to emails. I go through phases where I am more ‘balanced’ than others. Currently, my husband and I are making an effort to exercise together and get to sleep before 11:00. It always helps to achieve balance when you have someone who provides encouragement and accountability.” She also mentioned what she does outside of teaching English. She said, “I try to exercise regularly and enjoy working out in the gym and outside. I walk, jog, do yoga, and swim. In addition, I spend a lot of time with my family. I have one daughter who lives at home and three other adult children who live in Indiana, whom I see often.”

Garner mentioned what Voelz has taught her about in Film Literature this Semester. She said, “Right now we’re watching a film that’s about history, which is really cool. We’ve watched a lot of different types of films and different styles of films.” Bell talked about what Voelz has taught her about in English 9 this Semester. She said, “She’s taught us about the story Romeo and Juliet and Greek mythology, my personal favorites.” Voelz discussed her favorite lesson or activity to do with the kids. She said, “I really enjoy Socratic seminars. It is extremely uplifting to observe students lead and discuss issues they have independently noted in texts they read for class.”

Bell talked about what her least favorite thing about English with Voelz is. She said, “My least favorite thing is doing work on our own.” As for Film Lit, Garner said, “Most of the reading can be a little bit continuous and the notes can be a bit boring sometimes but there’s good conversations.” For her part, Voelz discussed her least favorite thing about being an English teacher. She said, “My least favorite part is the paperwork (email, etc.) I know it is important to communicate with others, but sometimes it seems to take over my life. Balancing email communication with grading, planning, and teaching is challenging.”

Voelz talked about what she wants students to learn in English class. She said, “My number one goal is for students to realize they are capable of achieving whatever they work to do.” She also mentioned how she keeps the kids engaged. She said, “I typically find that their engagement is related to my enthusiasm. If I enjoy what I am reading or discussing, I usually find that my engagement is contagious. I also think engagement rises as the students have more ownership in the lesson.”

Garner talked about what she is going to remember the most about Voelz. She said, “Probably just the classroom morale and how many movies we watched.” Bell commented on what she is going to remember the most about Voelz. She said, “Something I will remember most is how much she cared [about us] and she is really good at teaching.” Voelz concluded by commenting on what she wants kids to remember about her. She said, “I hope that they remember that I care and that most people in life are willing to help you when you show effort.”