STUDENT SUMMIT Read about the first annual Operation Endangered Species Student Summit
Check out which PTHS seniors are this month's Upperclass Acts!
In other news, the school musical this year, Brigadoon , has finished casting, and music and dance rehearsals are now underway. This month also marked opening of the 2020 Unified Basketball season in Odell, where an eventful scrimmage made for a fun night for all involved. Thanks again for stopping by, and I hope you enjoy this month ’ s edition of The Chief !
A NOTE FROM YOUR EDITOR
By Joe G i l mo r
Hey, everybody, and thanks for tuning in to another edition of The Chief ! We ’ ve had a plethora of events going on around PTHS this month, from Scholastic Bowl meets to Unified Basketball games, and we ’ re here to keep you updated! This month, the varsity and junior varsity Scholastic Bowl players faced off against Prairie Central at a meet, winning all four of their games against the Hawks.
Sincerely, Joe Gilmor Co-Editor-in-Chief
N O M A D I C |
Students Come Together to Change the World
Pontiac, Ill. (Jan 30, 2020) – Over 120 will join together on Friday, January 30, 2020, to change the world through the protection of Illinois land and water. Students will gather at Pontiac Township High School (PTHS) to participate in the 1st Annual Youth Summit hosted by the students of Operation Endangered Species (OES). According to PTHS Ecology teacher Paul Ritter, the purpose of the annual summit is to engage and enable youth to make an impact in their community with regards to protecting 30% of land and water by 2030. He said, “For over a decade Operation Endangered Species has seen firsthand the positive impact that students can have on the world when they come together for the greater good. This summit builds on those efforts and bring together students, community members, businesses, and government officials to discuss and implement the student ideas for the protection of our natural resources.” Participating schools include Pontiac Township High School, Lemont High School, Lockport High School, Seneca High School, Pekin High School, Champaign Centennial High School, and Ramstein High School in Ramstein-Miesenbach, Germany. During breakout sessions, students from each school will share information about raising and reintroducing endangered species, establishing pollinator plots, securing habitat, testing water, creating public communications, connecting with government officials, building awareness and finalizing the day by writing a state resolution to protect 30% of our Illinois land and water by 2030. Patty Melei, Lemont High School English Teacher, states, “The real power comes from the energy of students collaborating and committing to real action to protect the land and water resources within their communities. Their voices serve as a strong catalyst in changing social expectations and personal behaviors to protect our environment.” This year’s keynote speaker is Baylee Ritter who is an international environmental motivational speaker, Youth Coordinator for the Ocean Project, and founding member of Operation Endangered Species. Ritter is a graduate of PTHS and DePaul University with a major in Public Relations & Advertising and Communication Studies and minor in Environmental Communication. As a student founder of OES, Ritter works around the world to work with youth to protect our ocean resources. In 2011, she helped craft a piece of legislation responsible for generating over $400,000 to fund medication disposal boxes in Illinois. On behalf of OES, she traveled to Kenya, Sweden and Turkey to speak about youth activism at various United Nations events. (Story continues on next page)
“We look forward to seeing the impact of this event in Illinois and communities around the world,” said Lauren Durham and Claire Nyi, OES legislation co-spokespersons and students at PTHS. “It is an exciting and humbling opportunity to see the students realize the power they possess to make a change in their community and around the world. I can’t wait to hear about everyone’s progress and their new ideas as we continue to work together throughout the school year.” The event was sponsored by Pontiac Township High School, Lemont High School, and the students of Operation Endangered Species. About Operation Endangered Species – OES was created in 2011 under the leadership of Pontiac Township High School Ecology teacher Paul Ritter, English teacher Dr. Michael Soares, and students concerned about protecting, raising, and reintroducing regionally threatened and endangered species. OES is a collaborative effort between students, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Peoria Zoo, communities, city officials, and others to foster the eco-conscious objective of restoring an endangered species to a breeding population in its historical habitat.
By Alyssa Rodriguez
Even though some major events for the Music Department have ended, the spring season is just as packed for students involved in Band and or Choir. For instance, the Jazz band has started practices to work on pieces for an upcoming noncompetitive jazz festival in early February. Pep band is another activity going on for the band. The band comes together to play fun and popular songs during both the girls and boys home basketball games. Songs include ones like “Sweet Caroline,” “Tubthumping,” and “Smoke on the Water.” Choir and Band students also are working on music to perform for the department’s solo and ensemble contest in the first week of February. Students can either to pick a solo to sing or play, or can come together with others to work on a piece that they all perform in front of a judge to get feedback. Jazz Choir also is working on two pieces currently to perform at the upcoming choral pops concert. One other thing the department is working on is the upcoming spring musical. This includes working on pit music, speaking roles, singing solos, and the rest of the parts needed to put together a musical. Both bands and all of the choirs also are working on pieces for upcoming spring concerts on top of all of the other things that are going on in the Music Department.
Musical Update: Brigadoon
By Ava Nollen
As spring approaches, so does the musical. PTHS has either a musical or a play, alternating between the two every year. This year is the musical Brigadoon , a story based in Scotland featuring lively songs and dances. Everyone has a part to play in making the musical great. Collin Wonders, who plays Mr. MacLaren, says, “Being in the musical is a lot of fun and I’ve already made new friends and grown closer with a lot of people even though it’s still very early on!” The musical is set in Brigadoon, a mystical town that only appears once every hundred years, and focuses on the story of two American tourists who visit this mysterious locale. The musical will run from March 13-15. Don’t forget to come out and support your peers!
NAME: Regan Krause
FAVORITE AUTHOR/BOOK: 1984 by George Orwell
NICKNAMES: Reg, Linreg, Regalo, El Rego
ROLE MODEL: Gabby Altobelli
MOST POSITIVE MOMENT: Making it to Super- Sectionals in softball
ACTIVITIES @ PTHS: Softball, Swimming, Math Team
PET PEEVES: When people pretend to know what they are talking about when they actually have no clue. WHAT MY FRIENDS WILL REMEMBER ABOUT ME: I am understanding and sympathetic. I am also very funny. HOW WOULD YOU SPEND $1,000,000? Pay back my parents for all the money they spend on me. IF YOU WERE STRANDED ON A DESERT ISLAND, WHAT 3 ITEMS WOULD YOU WANT WITH YOU? Food, water, and my phone
FONDEST MEMORY OF HIGH SCHOOL SO FAR: Making Macdeath in Rhet III
3 MAJOR AREAS OF INTEREST: Data analysis, bioengineering, management science and engineering
PLANS AFTER HIGH SCHOOL: Play softball at Stanford University
FAVORITE MOVIE: Finding Nemo
MOST INSPIRATIONAL SONG: “Stronger” by Kelly Clarkson
LAST WORDS OF ADVICE: “Don’t wish your life away.”
FAVORITE TEACHER/CLASS: Anatomy with Mr. Nollen
NAME: Steven Lewis
MOST POSITIVE MOMENT: When I signed my NLI for SEMO.
NICKNAMES: big suga, sug, big Steve, big hoss, big fella Steve
PET PEEVES: When you are talking and people cut you off.
ROLE MODEL(S): Ray Lewis, my mom
ACTIVITIES @ PTHS: Football, wrestling, Track and the PEER Club
WHAT MY FRIENDS WILL REMEMBER ABOUT ME: Always being loud, funny, and always eating food HOW WOULD YOU SPEND $1,000,000? First I’ll get my dream car, go on vacation and save whatever rest for college for my future kids. IF YOU WERE STRANDED ON A DESERT ISLAND, WHAT 3 ITEMS WOULD YOU WANT WITH YOU? Water, machete, more water LAST WORDS OF ADVICE: “Get it done! All four years, your grades matter, so listen to your teachers you’ll thank them later.”
FONDEST MEMORY OF HIGH SCHOOL SO FAR: Going second round in playoffs with the boys
3 MAJOR AREAS OF INTEREST: Law enforcement, football, working out
PLANS AFTER HIGH SCHOOL: Go play football at Southeast Missouri state
FAVORITE MOVIE: Remember the Titans
FAVORITE TEACHER/CLASS: Mr. Sweetwood/ Illinois Studies
FAVORITE BOOK AUTHOR: Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
Classic Literature Review: F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby
By Jasmine White
The Great Gatsby is a classic book in the world of literature. Placed in the 1920 ’ s, the book has touches of the “ roaring twenties ” and the World Series of 1919 that was fixed. The Great Gatsby has multiple themes, symbols, and motifs. While the first few pages were a little confusing and hard to follow, once you get going it gets easier to read and interpret the meanings. An interesting theme that caught my attention is that things in the past should stay in the past. This is important because it shows how Gatsby is trying to stay in the past where Daisy still loved him. Besides my favorite theme, a really good scene is when Nick and Gatsby is talking at his house and that is where Gatsby tells him about his past. I rate this book a 4.5/5 because it was a little confusing in the beginning but beside that it is overall good.
The Chief Staff
Senior Survey By Marley Noles
Sunny Holt: Co Editor-in-Chief Joe Gilmor: Co Editor-in-Chief
Has Senioritis set in? Lauren Smith: Yes Carson Gregory: Yes Brienna Weaver: Yes Regan Krause: Yes Natasha Koenig: Yes Ryan Craver: Yes
Madison McDormand Luke Morrissette Marley Noles Ava Nollen Alyssa Rodriguez
Lauren Smith Jasmine White
Mr. Blair, Faculty Sponsor Dr. Soares, Faculty Sponsor
Where do you plan on attending college? Lauren Smith: Illinois State University (Mennonite College of Nursing) Carson Gregory: Loras College Brienna Weaver: Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Regan Krause: Stanford Natasha Koenig: Eastern Illinois University Ryan Craver: Heartland Community College for Gen. Eds.
Enjoy creative writing? If you ever would ever like to see your creative pieces in The Chief , contact Dr. Soares or Mr. Blair!
What do you plan on majoring in? Lauren Smith: Nursing Carson Gregory: Biology/Neuroscience Brienna Weaver: Biomedical Sciences/Pre-Med Regan Krause: Undecided Natasha Koenig: Criminal Justice Ryan Craver: Undecided