What am I going to do now that I can’t get wondrous advice from ground control? Any last words?
A Confused Student
Dear Confused Student,
Wow, I’m sad. I’m kidding, is there really a point to worrying? Why not reread all the advice already given? Generally people have the same problems over and over again.
Anyways, to answer your question, I am going to tell you:
Slow down, take time and appreciate what is going on around you.
Why would I be responding to your question right now? Oh no, are you going to accuse your own question of being fake too?
Do you have anything better to do? Anything at all?
As you think about these questions, my best advice is to try and move on without us. Though we will miss you trying to
Have a fake day,
Dear Ground Control,
Why do we really even have all the spirit stuff? It’s the last weeks of school why can’t we just end it?
Ready To Go Home
Dear The End Is Near,
I don’t think about it in that way, it’s school bonding! The people we got stuck next to for the last 8 months, 5 days a week, 6.5 hours a day, them, we get to be friends towards the end <3
Additional Comment: If you are one of the handful of people who actually read the newspaper, we here at The Phoenix Flyer greatly appreciate you. You make all the time we spend in class, the deadlines, and painful distributions definitely worth it!
You think I don’t notice. You think that no one sees you. You think you’re safe in your cozy aviation themed socks. But I know what you’ve done and you better not think there aren’t consequences.
I walk through the halls, into classrooms and bathrooms, by the printers and in the lunchroom… and what I see is devilry! Piles and piles — whole stacks — of the Phoenix Flyer thrown away like moldy spaghetti left in your closet. I see the work I have oh-so-kindly-done-out-of-the-kindness-of-my-heart for you in a crumpled heap in the recycling bin. Nay! The GARBAGE. You don’t even have the decency to dispose of me properly. Absolute fiends.
Clearly you are oblivious to this. You think: “Oh there’s no way a high school paper can do anything to retaliate… oh wow I’m so cool, look at me pretending to be some basketball superstar slam dunking paper into the garbage because I think I’m all that and the garbage is definitely the place for paper to go.” Oh sure, an inanimate newspaper can’t throw you in the trash pretending to swoosh hoops. Oh sure, massive bundles of paper won’t ever be exposed to radiation in some dump and become sentient. Oh sure, those papers that definitely won’t become sentient also definitely won’t collude with their fellow mutant trash and build an army. Oh sure, that army won’t know the location of the school or of every person who has every subscribed to the paper. Oh sure, said army won’t seek its revenge and plunge a sewer soaked pointy paper knife into the heart of every soulless RAHS student who has thrown away the paper. Oh sure, once they emerge victorious they won’t seek to destroy your known world just as you have destroyed ours.
Look, all I’m saying here is that there is absolutely nothing to worry about! Live your content little lives in blissful ignorance because there is definitely, definitely, no reason to think you are in any danger of a paper revolution.
RAHS physics teacher Dona Bien-Aime is implementing within the AP Physics 1 and 2 classes a comprehensive end-of-the-year project applying physics concepts taught throughout the year to investigate why the Concorde jet was so inefficient.
Senior Matthew Arnold sees the project as a means of applying what he has learned throughout the year in a cumulative showcase.
“We were asked to point out where the Concorde was inefficient, said Arnold. “Namely how the wing is inefficient [and] create a poster to show, using physics that we know, the Concorde wing’s inefficiency.”
More specifically, the project focuses on the factors related to wing efficiency instead of calculating the exact wing efficiency. This is because of the complex nature of flight analysis and the time-limit for the end-of-year project.
“It’s more about seeing what factors affect [wing efficiency] in a more general sense, not necessarily finding how efficient a wing is,” said Arnold. “It just about seeing the factors of the design of the wing how that affects its efficiency.”
Bien-Aime agrees with the function of the project in the context of solidifying important concepts learned throughout the year in an aggregate way.
“[The project applies] concepts that [students have] learned definitely in [AP] Physics 2 like Bernoulli’s Principle, conservation of energy, and conservation of momentum,” said Bien-Aime.
The projects’ main objective is to prepare students for a future aerospace-related career.
“The main objective of the project is to apply physics to understand aerospace engineering, so you can see what exactly is going into a plane — how we design the wing, how we design a big massive thing that can defy gravity and move,” said Bien-Aime.
For the students who may not necessarily want a career in aerospace, the project provides and example of practical engineering.
“Aerospace engineering would be the most practical engineering,” said Arnold. “If you were to give this project to an aerospace engineer, they would probably have the best chance of solving it.”
The culmination of the project is mostly a poster showcase in lieu of a question-answer gallery walkthrough or a presentation.
“[Physics students] don’t have to do a presentation,” said Mr. Bien-Aime. “They’re not going to do a presentation for class, but they are going to have the poster standing there. Probably, in class or preferably in the cafeteria, so people can walk by and ask them questions.”
The information necessary for the project, including wing detail specifications, is available online from a variety of sources.
“I go online,” said Arnold. “There’s lots of good websites. Concorde has its own website with specifications.”
RAHS’ UW Astronomy class is preparing for presenting their end of year projects to astronomers and physicists on 12 June.
Astronomy student junior Paul Richards is excited to present what he and his group have discovered to students, astronomers, and physicists.
“We are going to be presenting to two people from the University of Washington,” said Richards. “One a physicist, and the other in a field of astronomy whether that be an astronomer or an astrophysicist.”
Richards has been working on projects relating to the spectra of an astronomical object.
“The project that I am doing entails the determination of the nature of two objects in a binary system [a system where two stars orbit each other],” said Richards, “based off of the spectra [color wavelength] and Doppler shift of the H-alpha line [wavelength of ionized hydrogen].”
Students have been working hard to prepare by creating a poster, writing a scientific paper, and building a strong presentation. Senior Eleanor Pahl is making sure she understands all of her work, particularly the math, so that her group is able to answer any questions.
“On top of just practicing presenting,” said Pahl, “we are also looking at going over the math a lot and going over the graphs making sure we understand everything so that if they ask questions we will be able to explain.”
Astronomy teacher Nikhil Joshi decided that these projects (Binary Stars, Stellar Properties, and Galaxy Rotation) are perfect for students to get a taste of what astronomy is like in college and in an astronomical career.
“The goal of the projects is for students to apply what they’ve learned over the year to analyzing data and creating models similar to how professional astronomers work,” said Joshi. “The goal is for students to understand how scientists work in general and astronomers in particular.”
The project that senior Thomas Kirby has been working on provided an opportunity to see how everything that was taught throughout the year can be applied.
“It’s been an interesting way of applying the things we learned throughout the whole year,” said Kirby, “[as] each of the components [within the project] such as how to get the information to find the area of isolated parts [within the project], only now we get to do it.”
The class was assigned to three different projects at the end of April and groups were separated into their particular project based on their mathematical level.
“[Sections are] based on our abilities in math,” said Richards, “and what math class we are in.”
Pahl has been working on the Galaxy Rotation project, and is trying to understand the relationship between speed and the rotation of galaxies.
“We are looking at the rotation speed of galaxies,” said Pahl, “and we are trying to model that using calculus.”
In order to do this project, astronomy students had to understand both astronomical and mathematical concepts.
“We primarily needed to have an understanding of sine waves and basic pre-calculus mathematics,” said Richards, “and just beyond that we had to have a lot of background in astronomy.”
In senior Thomas Kirby’s project, the group needed a strong understanding of blackbody curves—the thermal radiation of an object.
“We are analyzing the spectra of two stars to find information about them,” said Kirby, “which includes the temperature of the star based on its blackbody curve, the distance a star is away from the Earth, the radius of the star, and potentially its rotation speed.”
Students had to refresh their Microsoft Excel skills in order to calculate and graph the computations they have made.
“We mostly had to learn excel in order to do all of our calculations,” said Kirby. “We started by plugging in data of the emission spectra and then matching it to what the spectra should look like and them from there find out how hot it is [the object] from the maximum wavelength and how far away it is from us.”
As the final school day on 20 Jun. 2018 creeps closer, teachers must test students on the class material they’ve been working on throughout the year. While some teachers may choose to do a traditional final exam, some teachers at RAHS have chosen to test their students with unique projects.
One of these teachers is Brandyn Mannion, whose chemistry class gave a presentation on air quality to end their gases unit. “I basically gave them the direction that they needed to design an experiment, any experiment, around air quality,” said Mannion, “and the onus was on [students] to literally design any experiment that interested them on whatever topic they found most interesting, and prove to me that they know how to design an experiment.”
Mannion wanted a breather from all the tests he’s given.
“We’ve done tests before so why not do something different?” said Mannion.
Sophomore Mollie Brombaugh enjoyed the professional aspect of the projects
“I thought it was interesting to have to consider and plan a project from the [point of view] of an industry professional/researcher,” said Brombaugh, “and I liked the opportunity to choose and research something that interested you.”
Although a creative project allows for students to shape their learning, that opportunity can also be a challenge.
“For some students it’s really difficult because it is so open-ended,” said Mannion. “I’ve had some students spin their wheels in the mud, so to speak, because they’re like ‘where do I start? What is it I wanna do?’”
Brombaugh agrees with Mannion regarding the difficulties.
“What I found most challenging was actually to choose a topic to research,” said Brombaugh. “Determining a topic to focus on and an appropriate guiding question proved to be rather difficult with such a broad scope and little direction.”
Another class which uses an imaginative final is Big History, taught by Jacob Savishinsky and Michelle Juarez. Through the Little Big History project, freshmen explain the story of a topic they choose from the beginning of the universe to the modern day.
“The Little Big History project attempts to encapsulate all of what [students] have learned so it should be a test of how well they’ve understood the course and to see how they can build on that knowledge,” said Juarez.
Although the project thoroughly encapsulates the Big History skills of reading, writing, and researching, it comes with some challenges: namely, Wikipedia.
“For me, a major hurdle is when we talk about scholarly resources,” said Juarez. “I can direct [students] to the King County Library System but everybody wants to use Wikipedia; it’s fast and easy.”
The project is more than a traditional research paper; it compels students to see how their topic has affected humanity as a whole.
“It’s a real thesis project,” said Juarez. “It’s not just researching the B-52 bomber, it’s trying to understand how the B-52 has changed as technology has improved over time. That’s what I’m hoping they get out it, that they kind of see the bigger picture; how humans have changed the nature of the world.”
Big History student and freshman Marco Jawili is doing his Little Big History project on the carbon molecule. Jawili chose to research carbon because of its application in technology.
“I enjoy basically researching stuff that I didn’t know in the past,” said Jawili. “I knew carbon had a lot of potential with technology but I didn’t know there was a thing called carbon nanotubing which is basically a super strong material and that was really cool to learn about.”
Jawili believes projects that utilize student creativity capture students attention more than simply studying for a test.
“I feel like with a project you become more engaged with the topic because you get to choose in the end what you wanna research and Mr. Sav always makes a point; ‘surround your research with things that interest you. Research what you wanna learn about,’ and I really like that concept,” said Jawili. “It helps you learn more and it helps you have the knowledge stick with you so I feel like that’s way better than just doing a test.”
We all know senior Sameer Romani, if not by name, but by his attire. A suit. Every day. But Sameer dresses to impress, and he impresses a lot of powerful people.
“The mentors I’ve had the pleasure of interacting with range from all aspects of the industry,” said Romani. “I’ve met with international airline captains to Fortune 500 CEOs,” says Romani.
Most of Romani’s mentors share one thing in common.
“Just about all of them have a very strong influence in the world of modern aviation,” said Romani. “However, the most fundamental thing they all share in common is they’ve been humble and kind enough to mentor me.”
Throughout his four years at RAHS, Romani has met some very interesting people because of his networking skills.
“One of the most interesting would have to be either James Raisbeck or Ray Conner,” said Romani. “Dr. Raisbeck’s story is nothing short of impeccable; his dedication to engineering, his journey of entrepreneurship and leadership has been most inspiring and is worth hearing if the chance ever presents itself.”
Romani is also learning valuable life lessons from people who have come from nothing and rose to incredibly high positions.
“Mr. Conner’s story is virtually unheard of,” said Romani. “From starting at The Boeing Company as a line mechanic to retiring as the corporation’s Vice Chairman, I was floored by the path his career has taken.”
Romani has weekly meetings with different mentors. Most recently, Romani met with John Hornibrook and Coleman Boettger. They discussed life in general, and Romani’s plans for after high school.
Coleman Boettger has been an Alaska Airlines captain for over 20 years. He currently teaches the Aeronautical Science Pathway program at the Museum of Flight, which Sameer is now a graduate of.
“[My] overall opinion of Sameer’s networking skills is [that it is] outstanding,” said Botteger. “He has placed himself around a lot of Very Important People (VIPs).”
Aside from his mentoring prowess, Romani also tries hard as a student, and is also very strong academically. He is an “outstanding A+” student according to Boettger, and thinks all students can learn from him.
“Start by networking with Sameer,” said Botteger. “Have him as your teacher. There is no one better. I’m sure it has and will serve him well, like the VIP’s he has followed.”
Boettger is sure that the skills and connections Romani has built up over his four years in RAHS will give him an edge up in the real world. He also believes that these skills are valuable for future jobs.
“I’m sure the future has him one day as a VIP, CEO, [or] COO of a large company,” said Boettger.
Romani has a very easy way of making connections; he likes to establish the first contact. Mostly, he connects with prospective mentors online, but he sometimes meets them in person.
“To get mentors, I either send them an email or connect with them on LinkedIn,” said Romani. “On occasions, I’ll have the pleasure of networking with them in person.”
Romani is able to experience a lot of exciting events due to his connections with mentors. They range from casual lunch meetings to free flights.
“I was able to tour Emirates Airlines’ HQ and meet with their Pilot Selection Manager while visiting Dubai back in July 2015. I had a seat at ‘Table 1’ the first time I went to the Pathfinder Gala,” said Romani. “I toured the Deerjet 787 BBJ, toured Boeing’s Commercial offices, got a free airplane flight, and got a lot of free lunches!”
However, Boettger is most impressed with Romani as a whole. Romani has a great variety of skills, which he tops off with a fun personality and a great sense of humor.
“Of course, I think of him already as a VGP – Very Great Person,” said Boettger.
In affiliation with RAHS, the Museum of Flight (MoF) is constructing another aviation exhibit near the school. By 11 Nov. 2018, Project Welcome Home (PWH), a memorial to recognize Vietnam War veterans and display a newly-renovated Boeing B-52G Bomber, will be completed and parked on the grassy lot by the parking lot. This will pair with the recently added Vietnam Divided: War Above Southeast Asia exhibit in the Museum’s Great Gallery.
Trip Switzer, the MoF’s Vice President of Development, has been overseeing the fundraising side of the project.
“This was originally an effort to restore the B-52 the Museum has had on loan from the US Air Force since 1991,” said Swtizer. “As the project evolved, and the plane needed a new home, we developed plans to place the restored B-52 in a new ‘Vietnam Veterans Memorial Park.’ This will be a site dedicated to all Vietnam veterans.”
Mark Manzo has been a Major Gifts Officer in the Development Department at the MoF for three years and is a fundraiser for PWH. His and the project committee’s work will compile numerous artifacts from the Vietnam War.
“At the center of the park will be a retired Boeing B-52G ‘Stratofortress’ that served in Operation Linebacker II in December 1972 and contributed to the release of 591 U.S. POWs,” said Manzo. “The B-52 will be joined by a bronze statue of a returning aviator, which represents our Vietnam veterans.”
Along with the plane and the statue of the aviator, specific flags of the US military will be represented, as well one for prisoners of war (POW) and those missing in action (MIA).
“Seven flags will be flown as well – US, Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, and the POW/MIA flag,” said Switzer. “No list of veterans – deceased or living – will be installed, though donors to the project at a specific level have the opportunity to honor a Vietnam veteran on a tribute wall that will be part of the park.”
Freshman Max Welliver, a student liaison for the project, has contributed directly to the memorial’s efforts. Before the end of the school year, he and the Museum will be showcasing their hard work with the implementation of the renovated war plane on the memorial site.
“It’s exciting to finally have all the logistics come together and have the B-52 arrive,” said Welliver. “The B-52 arrives on Sunday, June 3rd at 7:30am and Raisbeck Aviation High School students are invited to attend!”
The B-52 arrived successfully on 3 Jun. 2018, with a large audience spectating. Switzer is looking forward to seeing how the memorial will give them an opportunity to learn about the Vietnam War as well as pay their respects. He believes PWH will serve as a belated “thank you” to the Vietnam soldiers.
“We believe this will be a truly unique place,” said Switzer. “There is no memorial we know of that focuses specifically on the air combat operations in Vietnam and the staggering losses suffered. Though aircraft and those who flew them will be highlighted, we intend it to be a site to thank and honor all Vietnam veterans, particularly so many who came home to a less-than-warm welcome.”
Students specifically can gain from the memorial by recognizing the similarities between the soldiers and themselves and reflecting on their experiences.
“A lot of these people weren’t much older than RAHS students when they found themselves in unimaginable situations in Vietnam,” said Manzo. “Then, when they returned home, many never received any kind of decent recognition and haven’t in all the years since. The memorial will acknowledge their service.”
Welliver has been an asset to PWH, not only getting a unique opportunity to learn about Vietnam veterans but also to work closely with the Museum as a student representative.
“I’ve learned a lot about the B-52 and its long history of service in the US Air Force,” said Welliver. “B-52’s have been serving for over 50 years and are expected to serve for another 30 with a re-engine. That will make it one of the longest serving airplanes in the United States Air Force.”
One of the Museum’s goals for the project was to have a model of the B-52 plane on display in the museum’s new exhibit, Vietnam Divided: War Above Southeast Asia. Their request for a builder was answered by Welliver, who already makes model airplanes in his spare time.
“Since I’m a member of the local scale modeling group and apart of the Project Welcome Home Committee, I thought it would be nice to build it,” said Welliver. “The kit I was given was challenging because it was older molding, but with a lot of putty, it finally came together.”
Inspiration for PWH comes from old colleagues of Linebacker II, a division of the US Air Force and Navy that flew B-52’s in 1972.
“Project Welcome Home was born out of a 2012 reunion of the crew that flew on the B-52 that will go in the park,” said Manzo. “When they visited the plane they saw that was in desperate need of restoration. From that gathering, a committee of Vietnam veterans realized a greater purpose beyond simply restoring the aircraft.”
As the name states, the new exhibit in the Great Gallery focuses on the war above Southeast Asia that lasted from 1955-1975. While PWH’s focal points are the renovated B-52 and honoring of soldiers from the war, the new Vietnam Divided exhibit will specifically feature the aircraft used in action and delve deeper into the technology and tactics of that war.
The Museum opened the exhibit for a preview event on Thursday 24 May, 2018, two days before it opened to all members. In attendance was the MoF President and CEO Matt Hayes, who thanks the members who not only receive but contribute in some way to new features of the Museum.
“We could say that we’re doing this for them and we build things to entertain and educate,” said Hayes, “but the reality [is] they’re giving as much or more back to us by who they were, their experiences, [and] how much they care.”
More than 30 people went to the preview of the Vietnam Divided exhibit on Thursday. One attendee, Morgan Girling, an employee at Blue Origin and another model plane enthusiast, enjoyed perusing the old paraphernalia of the war.
“It is an interesting time in history that the country has spent a lot of effort trying to forget,” said Girling. “I think it’s very worthwhile that it’s remembered. People are [being] honored. [I’m] delighted to see the oral history kiosks.”
Bill Wilson, a Vietnam War veteran from the Linebacker II Air Force and Navy aerial bombing campaign, was also at the preview event, answering questions and reminiscing his service.
“The big famous part of that [Linebacker II] was the B-52’s,” said Wilson. “[We] went into North Vietnam and then bombed the crap out of it.”
Manzo has learned a significant amount about the war just from working on Project Welcome Home, and appreciates the museum and school’s help in progressing with the exhibit’s commencement.
“I’d like to say thank you to the students of RAHS who are interested in getting involved with the project and learning more about the service of our Vietnam Veterans,” said Manzo. “I’m 42 and it was my parents’ generation that fought in Vietnam. I didn’t know much about their sacrifices but, by working on this project, I’ve been learning. We welcome the students of RAHS to learn with us and to say thank you to our veterans.”
Despite some speculation on whether or not the Senior Showcase had enough participants, the event, which occurred on 30 and 31 May 2018, featured several impressive projects such as rebuilt cars, scratch-built go-karts, and auto-piloted drones.
RAHS senior Alex March presented his project, a restoration of a 1968 Ford Mustang, to staff, students, and visitors during the showcase.
“It was a project I intended to do anyway,” said March, “it went very well and there was a lot of support coming from everyone.”
In addition to accomplishing his goal, March believes the Senior Showcase is a great way to display students’ interests and ideas.
“It sparked conversation with people during and after the Showcase,” said March, “and at the end of it I have a running Mustang I can drive.”
March believes the Senior Showcase was a great way to see impressive ideas and projects developed by his peers while being an easy and rewarding experience for those participating.
“I was very impressed by Teo’s Go-Kart,” said March, “it was really cool to see that he built it entirely from scratch, and to see it there in person was a good experience.”
Even though she was not a participant, RAHS senior Helena Cassam found the Showcase an impressive display of students’ projects.
“It was really cool to see what our fellow classmates have been doing all year,” said Cassam, “and how their own personal interests and passions can play a role in those projects.”
One such project was the rebuild and restoration of a Ford 302 engine from an F-150 by RAHS seniors Brandon Santillan and Hannah Kaiser.
“It was a huge learning experience for both of us,” says Kaiser. “It was really interesting seeing all the people coming in who knew things about engines we could talk to, or that didn’t and we could teach.”
Santillan believes that while the project was tough at points, the Senior Showcase was a worthwhile and beneficial project.
“It was an extremely hard project and it took some getting used to putting in the late hours after school,” said Santillan, “but the senior project really put it into place and gave us a reason to re-build it for a cause.”
Santillan and Kaiser both believe that the senior project has taught valuable life skills to use in the real world.
“Certainly this taught us a lot about being able to take a step back and look at what’s happening in a large-scale project,” said Santillan, “but it also taught us a lot about teamwork and being able to work together effectively.”
Santillan, March, and Kaiser all highly recommend that students seriously consider participating in the Showcase.
“You need to start early,” said Santillan, “but it’s absolutely something that’s taught me a ton about engines and cars that I’ll keep using for the rest of my life.”
Cassam also recommends that future students participate in the Showcase.
“It’s something I actually regret not doing,” said Cassam. “It isn’t hard to do especially if you’re already working on projects and it’s a good experience with the possibility of scholarships as well.”
The winners of the Senior Showcase and the prizes they’ve won will be announced on 7 June, and any underclassman interested in participating in future years can visit Ms. Wombold for more information.
Summer is an opportune time to volunteer for great causes throughout the local community. There are many options to choose from, ranging from volunteering at local animal shelters, to running community camps.
Volunteering builds character, and allows students to experience working for a charity or other well-intentioned organization; Katie Carper, the counselor at RAHS, emphasizes the importance of volunteering.
“Volunteer work is important for communities and for students because it provides them with real world experiences and helps to build a sense of community,” said Carper. “It can also help with college applications, particularly if students make a particular impact in their field of volunteering.”
Students often take Carper’s advice, applying themselves to charitable work that makes meaningful changes to their community, and bolsters their college applications. Felix Bosques, an RAHS junior, has volunteered for various causes throughout his community since freshman year.
“I volunteered at Cascades Camp as a camp worker and counselor in training, and it taught me a lot about how to work with children,” said Bosques. “It also taught me responsibility through camp maintenance and activities.”
Felix was able to learn skills that are important for young adults, and gain valuable experiences with responsibility. These skills were not the only benefits he felt from his volunteering efforts.
“It is important to volunteer because you’re helping out the community in a way that helps everyone out,” said Bosques, “and through volunteering you learn more about yourself as well.”
Other students volunteer by cleaning parks, and doing other public service to benefit their community. This both helps local communities, and satisfies graduation requirements. Some students, like junior Braeden Swanson, even volunteer abroad, contributing to the global community.
“I’ve volunteered domestically, in the Dominican Republic, and for multiple causes,” said Swanson. “It is easy to help out when you know of good opportunities, starting at school and in the RAHS community.”
Braeden has volunteered for numerous charities, and has gained valuable experiences from her work. Through her experiences, she has learned the importance of public service.
“Volunteering is important because reaching out to people who need your help not only helps those people but gives you a better understanding of how to hold yourself, and how you interact with people,” said Swanson.
There are several ways to volunteer this summer, many of which are in the local community. Alyssa Ryser, a senior at RAHS, has volunteered at the Zoo for 4 years, contributing to her community by assisting with various duties involving the zoo’s wide variety of animals. Steph Glasscock, a junior at RAHS, recommends volunteering at a local animal shelter, a job that she has been doing for three years.
“We always need more help with the animals, and it is very important that we are able to keep them nourished, walked, and taken care of,” said Glasscock.
Although volunteering at these institutions may be too large of a commitment for most students, there are other, more accessible ways to volunteer.
“Many students volunteer over the summer, through church groups, community service organizations, and many environmental works,” said Carper. “The important thing is that students find volunteer work that they enjoy, as it will make the experience much more rewarding and doable. Find something you’re passionate about, and volunteer.”
Students can look online, talk to friends, or speak with a counselor about what opportunities are right for them. 40 hours of community service are required to graduate, and summer offers the best opportunity to rack up the hours.
Since leaving RAHS last year, former chemistry teacher Garrett Shiroma moved to Ewa Beach on the island O’ahu in Hawai’i.
Shiroma has been entirely focused on his business plan, which has moved away from his original food truck plan and towards the idea of opening a restaurant.
“So the food truck has not been created yet,” said Shiroma. “I just came back from a trip to Japan and Okinawa to do some eating research for my food. The idea of the food truck has also kinda evolved into a restaurant in the downtown area that serves breakfast and lunch. The main cuisine is Okinawan food with a twist.”
Shiroma decided on Okinawan food after his trip to Japan and Okinawa because the culinary disappointment made him want to improve the flavors.
“My trip was good,” said Shiroma, “I ate a lot of food, but found out that either I was going to the wrong eateries, or Okinawa just doesn’t have that great of food.”
Outside of his business plan, Shiroma and his family are doing well while living in Hawai’i, besides a few unexpected issues involving a change of housing.
“We are not exactly living where we had planned due to family emergencies,” said Shiroma, “so we have kind of a house swap going on right now.”
Shiroma finds that living in Hawai’i was a good transition from living in Washington–despite the difficulties of his housing situation–as he has a lot more time to focus on his life.
“My favorite part of living in Hawai’i is the pace,” said Shiroma. “It’s a lot slower and relaxed. The least favorite is that it’s an island and there are only so many things you can do on an island.”
Shiroma easily runs out of hobbies to fill his time and has found himself controlled by more addicting hobbies.
“The internet is a dark, dark hole that can take up more hours than you realize,” said Shiroma.
In his free time–when it’s not stolen by the internet–Shiroma often finds himself relaxing in the tranquil Hawai’i environment. He usually partakes in calming activities such as taking a stroll around Ewa Beach or sitting on the beach itself.
“I’ve been travelling around a bit between the islands and have been doing some hiking,” said Shiroma. “Other than the restaurant, I don’t really have any other projects going on.”
Even though Hawai’i is a relaxing place where he can pursue his hobbies, Shiroma is still fairly nostalgic about his days leading RAHS Speech and Debate (S&D) to victory as their advisor.
“I do not miss the grading,” said Shiroma, “what I miss most is working with the students in extracurricular roles for prom and S&D.”
Shiroma not only misses the friends and acquaintances he left behind at RAHS, but also those in Washington. Shiroma finds it harder to maintain friendships while living across the ocean from his old acquaintances.
“I miss the connections I made in Washington the most,” said Shiroma, “and the cold rain and ice is what I miss the least.”
Shiroma has not been completely disconnected from RAHS since leaving, as he texts Joshi on a regular basis and stays in contact with others from the school.
“I spoke with Mrs. Hiranaka a couple of times and the S&D exec team has contacted me a couple of times for things,” said Shiroma. “I get my gossip in spurts, but don’t worry, they haven’t shared anything terrible.”
The class of 2018 is graduating 14 June 2018. After four year at RAHS, they have useful information on how to traverse high school for underclassmen.
Senior and athlete Hannah Kaiser knows that studies are important in life especially in high school. However, enjoying yourself in high school is equally as important.
“I wish I would have known to have more fun outside of school rather than studying,” said Kaiser. “I wish I spent more time to myself especially sophomore and junior year doing more of what I love.”
Kaiser has found the key to her success—which is to live a happy and fun life—and hopes students know as they move through their high school experience.
“Don’t get too caught up in what’s going on. Let loose and have some fun, don’t worry about getting perfect grades,” said Kaiser. “Try your best and live a happy life. Enjoy high school because a lot is going to change when you get out!”
Senior Stella Sission has been through the ups and down of high school and now has the proper knowledge to tackle an overbearing schedule.
“I wish that before I had started my Senior year, people had told me that it was hard. Balancing school, AP classes, and all of the intricacies that come with college was much more difficult than I anticipated,” said Sisson. “It can be stressful to balance the two, and it might sound crazy to add a third thing, but something that really helped me was getting consistent exercise. It always made me feel more relaxed.”
Senior and ASB member Keir Hichens has a rule every student at RAHS should follow.
“I would say that I try and follow one rule in particular,” said Hichens, “which is I if get some assignment, or just a task, if it takes me under 3-minutes to complete I will get it done right away. That way my to-do list doesn’t accumulate.”
Hichens has learned skills like managing difficult classes and this has taught him qualities that will be helpful as he enters adulthood.
“I wish I would’ve made some study groups and people I could rely to study with for AP classes and just lay out my year from the beginning of the year,” said Hichens. “Also to make sure that I was planning ahead anything and everything so that I could be on top of everything.”
Senior Sameer Romani, and Director of RAHS Student Ambassador Program/Career Center Associate shares the importance of enjoying your high school experience.
“The best thing to do before leaving high school is to pursue what fulfills you best,” said Romani. “Go to a school dance, go out to lunch with your friends, and don’t center the entirety of your life on just purely your academics. While they should be a priority, so should your own well being.”
Romani, like many people, has learned a lot in in high school from teachers, friendships. Overall school and this will help him achieve his future goals.
“Looking back though, these four years have been nothing short of extraordinary, “ said Romani. “I was able to make some of the best friendships I could ever ask for, I was taught by teachers who care about education and their students, I am still mentored by industry leaders who have had illustrious careers and are helping me pave the way for my own, and I’m walking away from here and going exactly where I want to be.”
Romani has learned possibly the most important lesson of all at RAHS and encourages everyone to abide by this lesson.
“The most important lesson I’ve learned is to simply be yourself. It may not get you a lot of friends and make you the most popular in the school, but it’ll get you the right people,” said Romani. “ I’m not showing up here on campus pretending to be someone else. Sure, there are days where I put a smile on my face when I’d rather not (like when I had AP exams), but as a person, what you see is what you get. Be genuine.”