September Tiger Scholar

By: Kirsten Hernandez

Brynn Abernathy is September’s Tiger Scholar due to her academic excellence.

brynn.pngAbernathy plans to graduate high school with a 4.0 GPA. Throughout high school Abernathy has participated in Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA), Student council and yearbook. This year Abernathy is Executive Vice President of Student Council.

Throughout high school, Abernathy’s favorite high school memory is going to football games with her friends. Abernathy’s favorite subject in school is English.

 She said, “My favorite subject in school is English because I enjoy reading and writing.”

Sarah Wernsman has been her favorite teacher throughout high school. Abernathy plans to attend a four year university and earn her bachelor’s degree after graduation.

Abernathy plans on “majoring in communications because I like to write and being involved in media like television and radio.”

In ten years Abernathy sees herself with a good education and having a successful career. Abernathy’s biggest role model in life is her great grandmother.

She said, “She is constantly putting others before herself and has overcome many obstacles in her life. She also encourages me to grow in my relationship with Jesus. I hope I can make such an impact on someone’s life someday as she has had on mine.”

Abernathy’s favorite quote is “I don’t know what my future holds, but I know who holds my future.” she said, “This it reminds me that no matter what you go through in life, and how many uncertainties you face that God is always in control of your life and has the perfect plan in store for you.”

On Abernathy’s free time she enjoys to sing and play guitar, spend time with her friends and family, and play with her dogs Digbi and Mini. Her favorite movie is Pure Country because it has George Straight in it. Abernathy’s favorite book is Though My Eyes by Tim Tebow. Her favorite food is pasta, and her favorite holiday is Halloween. “Halloween is my favorite holiday because I love scary movies, haunted houses and getting dressed up.”

Before Abernathy graduates she has a piece of advice that she thinks would help the underclassman be successful in high school.

 She said, “The advice I would give underclassmen to be successful in high school is to do your best on all of your work and try not to stress yourself out over the little things.”



Taking the Final Step

By: Kirsten Hernandez

The countdown to the end of school has begun, we have all waited for this moment since the day we walked through those doors freshman year. Now in the seniors final days it is now our time to step up to the last chapter of our high school career. We will now be celebrating our last firsts of many things, and many firsts of what’s to come. Since we are celebrating so many lasts we must remember to soak it in, because before you know it we will be walking these halls for the last time preparing to graduate. We will have our last first day of school, last ballgames and school dances. It has been our dream since we were kids to graduate high school, and to think in a year it will be our turn to walk across that stage and get our diploma.

So many of us have grown up together and now we are approaching our final stretch together. Many of us will go our separate ways but we will always carry the memories of the class of 2018. Next year we will be making choices that will determine our future: choosing what colleges we want to attend, what our major will be and all the steps to accomplish our goals. Senior year comes with a busy schedule including: senior pictures, applying for scholarships and for many having a job or participating in sports or clubs.

Some of the most challenging things about senior year are going to be staying focused and motivated to finish up all things that need to be done as “Senioritis” sets in. We must find a balance to keep our goals a priority while still enjoying these last moments together.

SHS Dissects the Competition at HOSA Conference

By Kirsten Hernandez

From March 7-9, Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) held their state conference at the Denver Renaissance-Stapleton. There were 750 students that attended Colorado’s state conference. During the conference students attended general sessions, educational symposiums and competed in over 50 different Competitive events. A number of 26 students from SHS, Caliche High school, Haxtun high school and Northeastern Junior College attended the HOSA state conference. Of the 26 students, four made it to nationals which will be held in Orlando, Florida in June. 15 students made it into the top 10.

Lauren Zimmerman, a senior at SHS, has been a member of HOSA for all four years of high school. This year Zimmerman competed in Extemporaneous Writing.

Zimmerman said, “The best part about being a member of HOSA is getting to meet new people every year and learn new things.” HOSA has impacted Zimmerman’s life in several different ways, she said, “It has taught me to be a leader and work hard at anything you do.” Her favorite memory from this year’s state conference was eating pizza on the balcony or going to the recognition dinner with everyone. Zimmerman expressed her love for the program by setting goals and striving to help others and get them involved.

Cassie Schlueter, a senior from SHS, competed in this year’s state conference for the first time. Cassie made it in the top 10 in her event, Community Awareness. Although this was Schlueter’s first year being a member of HOSA it has already impacted her life.

She said, “It has really helped me decide what I want to do for my future through clinicals.”

Schlueter’s favorite memory from this year’s state conference was getting to know everyone she went with more. Schlueter said the best part about being a member of HOSA is getting the opportunity to compete at state, and guide her along her path through the medical field. She states that she would recommend this program to anyone who is considering the healthcare field.

Kodie Krueger-Wettstein, a junior from Caliche High School also competed this year. Krueger competed in Physical Therapy who earned her way into the top 10 as well. Her favorite part of state was visiting a symposium that included learning about the human body through anatomy and clay. This was Krueger’s first year in HOSA, and she would prefer to do it again. She states that the best part of being a HOSA member is experiencing careers that you are interested in and learn what the different opportunities are in those careers. Krueger plans to pursue attending HOSA, and is looking forward to more experiences to come.

HOSA impacts lives in different ways every year, and continues to prosper in health care. It certainly provides guidance to students and educators in directing them to their goals. Leadership is also focused on and taught to these HOSA members, and is a very important skill to learn in the healthcare field. These participating students encourage others to join HOSA for a great experience.


Tiger Scholar of February

By: Kirsten Hernandez

Ethan Farquhar has been selected as Tiger Scholar, due to his outstanding academic excellence. He participates in both high school and college band as the lead trumpet player. He also participates in jazz band where he is also lead trumpet player. Farquhar plans to graduate with a 3.2 GPA. Once Farquhar has graduated from SHS, he plans to attend Northeastern Junior College for a semester to finish his associate’s degree. Afterwards Farquhar plans to attend the University of Northern Colorado to finish his college career.

Farquhar plans to major in music production, he said, “I have always been musically inclined, and I love how technology has incorporated itself into the music industry.” In 10 years Farquhar said, “I see myself with a good degree, a job producing and engineering music and living with my girlfriend.”img_0307

Farquhar’s favorite teacher is Mr. Lippstrew which is also his role model. Farquhar said, “Mr. Lippstrew is the kind of musician and role model I’d like to see myself as in years to come.” Farquhar’s favorite subject in school is algebra, but he said, “I have also always liked English.” His favorite memory from high school was going to prom with his girlfriend Ella.

Outside of school Farquhar enjoys lifting weights, playing bass and hanging out with friends on the weekend. He is the oldest out of five children, he has three sisters and one brother. Farquhar’s favorite quote is by Robin Williams in his favorite film Good Will Hunting, “You’ll have bad times, but it’ll always wake you up to the good stuff you weren’t paying attention to.”

Farquhar’s favorite book series is the Circle Trilogy by Ted Dekker. His favorite type of food is Italian. When it comes to holidays, Farquhar said, “My favorite holiday is Christmas, because so much of my family participates.” Farquhar also said, “If I could go back in time the only thing I would do differently is turn in my math mates.”

A last piece of advice to  underclassmen before he graduates is to be involved and give academic classes as much focus as possible.

“Being ahead in classes really pays off,” he said.

Awkwardly Being Here

By Kirsten Hernandez

For many years as a junior at SHS you would take the ACT, which students have been taking since 2001, but this year things are different. The SHS juniors will be taking the SAT for the first time. To help prepare the juniors for the SAT this year, they took the PSAT. The PSAT is a good opportunity for students to get an idea of what the SAT will be like.

It’s hard to know what will come of this test as it is the first year the test will be taken. This new change will not only be hard for the students, but for the teachers as well.

The SAT includes sections for math, evidence-based reading and writing, math, science and social studies. The object of the SAT was to create a full length test to judge the overall intelligence of a student. Starting at the beginning of 2016, the writing section on the SAT will be optional. If chosen to take the written part of the exam, it will be scored separately, the reading section will no longer get “obscure” vocabulary words and the math section will put more emphasis on solving problems with real-world relevance.The College Board explains that the redesigned SAT will more closely reflect the real work of college and career.IMG_2390

The SAT is used as an entrance exam by most colleges to make admission decisions. The idea of the test is to provide colleges with one common criterion to compare all applicants. The total time to take the test is three hours and 50 minutes. The perfect score is 1600 so each section of the test is between 200 to 800 points.An average score on the SAT is 1000. The top 25 percent of   students that take the SAT score about 1200.

The ACT traditionally measures achievement while the SAT measures thinking skills. The SAT is a paper-based test. The only technology allowed to be used during the test is an approved calculator.

Sophomores will start taking the PSAT instead of the PARCC test. The PSAT tests differ from PARCC test and will take less time. For example, sophomores spent more than 11 hours on PARCC tests last spring, while the PSAT takes just under three hours. PARCC tests include only language arts and math. The PSAT and SAT tests cover reading, writing, math, science and social studies.

One factor that may have swayed Colorado is that the SAT has a reputation for being more reason-based and focused on critical thinking, while the ACT has a reputation for being more of a fact-recall test.

College Board has partnered with Khan Academy to provide free test preparation for any student with computer access. The SAT is a globally-recognized test accepted by nearly every college in the nation, including every Colorado college and university.


Tiger Scholar of December

By Kirsten Hernandez


Ty Wilterdink, a senior at SHS, has been selected as the Tiger scholar for December. Wilterdink has a current GPA of 3.8. After high school Wilterdink plans to attend the University of Northern Colorado and major in software engineering.

Wilterdink said, “In ten years, I hope that I have a good paying job that I enjoy and that will allow me to provide for my family.”

Wilterdink chose to major in software engineering, because he has always enjoyed working with computers. He also chose this career because of the fact that software engineering has a good job outlook in the future. In school, Wilterdink has participated in football all four years. Wilterdink commented that his years playing football would have to be his favorite high school memory. Wilterdink’s favorite subject in school is math.

He said, “Math has always been pretty easy for me and I enjoy it.”

His favorite high school teacher is Brad Hessler.

He said, “He taught my engineering technology class and he made the class really fun.”

Some of Wilterdink’s hobbies include football, video games and hunting. “My Biggest role model is my dad,” he said, “because he has always been a hard working man who has tried as hard as he can.”

If given the opportunity to go back in time and do high school over, Wilterdink said, “I wouldn’t do anything different because what I have done has led me to where I am today. And I am happy where I am today.”

Wilterdink’s favorite quote is, “Never put off until tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow.” by Mark Twain.

Some fun facts about Wilterdink are he has three sisters, his favorite book series is the Hunger games, his favorite movie is the Longest Yard and his favorite food is chicken.

Wilterdink’s favorite holiday is Thanksgiving because, “It’s a time where my family gets together and has a good time.”

Although Wilterdink is graduating this year he still has a piece of advice to help the underclassmen become successful in high school.

“My advice to the underclass is to study and pay attention in class. It’s amazing how easy school can be if you could just shut up and pay attention in class,” he said.


Teacher of November

By Kirsten Hernandez

Nelson Schroeder, SHS U.S. history and Financial literacy teacher is November’s teacher of the month. Schroeder became a teacher because of his love for kids and the subject.

As a teacher this year Schroeder hopes to get his students excited about learning and help them better themselves. Schroeder started as a geography teacher then became the civics teacher and is now the U.S. history teacher.

Schroeder said, “My favorite part about being a teacher is interacting with my students and sharing my passion with them. I try to make my class interesting and use stories as illustrations.

Schroeder said, “I don’t have a single favorite memory. It’s when I get to see my students being successful a few years down the road, and they say to me that they enjoyed my class.”

Schroeder with exchange student Amela Nevaljalovic holding the flag of Bosnia and Herzegovina after a presentation of her country.

Schroeder became a high school teacher because of the age group, he said, “I became a teacher at the high school level because I enjoy this age group, they most often are more mature and learn faster. With high school students you get a chance to look at the subject more in depth.”

Schroeder has always wanted to become a teacher, he said, “My former teachers have really influenced me to become a teacher myself. They modeled to me what it’s like to be a good teacher. They really connected with me not just as a student but as a person. I try to make my classroom a place where everyone can be comfortable and be themselves.”

Schroeder estimates that he has taught 20 teachers within the district including Brad Hessler, Sarah Wernsman and Laura Clark from the high school, he said, “Having taught these now teachers it’s really cool to see them be successful, but at times it weird and makes me feel old. It takes time for them to rid the habit of calling me Mr. Schroeder but eventually they adjust”

Schroeder’s role models are former teachers, he said, “My former choir and social studies teacher were like father figures for me, they made me feel important. As a kid I was always a misfit and they always made me feel important.”

Outside of school Schroeder enjoys spending time with his family, reading, music and playing his guitar. Schroeder enjoys reading nonfiction and biographies, his favorite books are Teaching to Change Lives by Howard Hendricks and Was God on Vacation? by Jack Van Der Geest.

Schroeder graduated for the University of Northern Colorado with his teaching degree. He grew up in Philadelphia until 1982 when he moved to Colorado.

Schroeder’s favorite holiday is Christmas, he said, “On Christmas my whole family get’s together and we eat Christmas dinner, after we eat, we all sit around the table telling stories.”

Schroeder has two pets, a cat named Atticus and a dog named Taz. His cat is named after Atticus Finch from the book To Kill a Mockingbird and his dog is named after the Tasmanian Devil from Looney Toon’s.

Overall as a teacher Schroeder said, “I hope that my students will take away the lesson that your circumstances don’t dictate your outcome and that you can never have too much education.”