Ready for a new, free, weightless method of SAT/ACT study? Starting the week of the 18th of October, T.C. students will be assigned logins and passwords for a newly available SAT/ACT online preparatory courses.
Now, on their own time, students can take pre-tests that help them pinpoint what sections of the test need the most help with. In contrast to traditional courses, students are not tied down to specific hours of concentration, but are free to study for the SAT/ACT whenever they have the time. These lessons are conveniently accessible so that students can work their study schedules around school, sports, and jobs. With the newly obtainable wireless feature on student’s laptops, SAT/ACT prep can be achieved anywhere that there is a wireless connection. As sophomore Hayden Arp points out, “working on the internet is more user-friendly,” appealing to the modern teenager as opposed to classroom courses that usually occupy an entire day.
Students are never too young to familiarize themselves with SAT/ACT groundwork. Sophomore Gertrude Abbey believes that the new courses are “really good to help students prepare for their future and college preparation.” Pupils such as junior Kate Aplin expressed indifference but believe that it could be potentially helpful for other future test takers.
The ACT, a test that differs from the conventional SAT with its additional science portion and lack of penalization for guessing, is now available to be taken at T.C. Williams. This assessment appeals to different learning styles in the way that it tests a different way of thinking.
If students wish to get their passwords and logins before the mid-October, the College and Career Center, located to the right of the main office, is available to provide the information.
By Madeline Christy and Katherine Snow
On September 11th, T.C. played against Mount Vernon. The game began with excitement. In the very first play, quarterback Doug Murphy completed a quick pass to receiver Will Rossi, who ran down the field for a touchdown. Mount Vernon answered quickly, however, returning a T.C. fumble for a touchdown. But Mount Vernon’s success was short lived. A lack of offense, combined with several missed field goal and short punts made the victory even easier for the Titans. Murphy’s accurate arm helped sustain the offense, completing two touchdown passes to wide receiver Raquan Brunson. Kicker Manuel Benites also was on target all game, making 6 extra points, and one field goal. Dealo Roberson rushed for one touchdown, and Damien Benton returned a fumble eight yards for a touchdown late in the 4th quarter to seal a Titanic victory over the Majors. Spectators who attended the game appeared to enjoy the game. “They player a really good game,” said junior Louis Ignas. “hopefully they can keep up the good play and get the team far this season.” The Titans overwhelmed Mount Vernon in almost all of the game, securing the win.
Unfortunately for the Titans, the September 16th game against Oakton, did not go nearly as well. The Titans trailed 20-7 at halftime and the final score was 29-14. “There were too many turnovers and big plays. We’ve gotta do a better job playing defense in the secondary,” said T.C. cornerback and receiver Jalani Winbush. The team lacked offense throughout most of the game, and Oakton’s offense overpowered the Titan defense.
The Titan’s schedule is not going to get any easier. The next opponent is Lake Braddock, who many consider the best team in the entire area. “Lake Braddock is probably going to be the toughest game of the year,” Winbush said. “We’re going to have to practice harder than we’ve ever practiced.” Lake Braddock quarterback Michael Nebrich is considered one of the best quarterbacks in the area, and has already committed to play at the University of Connecticut.
Despite the loss to Oakton,, Winbush says that the team is confident and feels it can reach the Virginia State Championship. “I think our chances at winning a championship are very good. We’ve got a very good team, and our coaches are always telling us how much talent we have.” T.C. last won the state championship in 1987, but Winbush and the team appear confident that they could add a title to T.C.’s record this season.
As Winbush had predicted, the game against Lake Braddock was very difficult for the Titans, as they fell in an embarrassing 49-12 defeat. The Titans offense never got started, and the defense gave up 28 points by halftime. Nebrich, Lake Braddock’s star quarterback, was 22-35, had 380 passing yards, threw five touchdowns and rushed for one more. It was the Titan’s worst defeat of the season so far.
The Titans needed to rebound strongly after such a tough loss, and that is exactly what they did on Saturday, October 2nd. The Titans played West Springfield at Parker-Grey stadium for T.C’s Homecoming game. Although the score was only 7-0 in T.C’s favor at halftime, the T.C. offense found its groove early in the second half and the scoring picked up significantly. T.C. scored 24 points in the 3rd quarter alone, with two explosive touchdown runs from Titans running back Zaquan Summers. The T.C. defense also caused several turnovers. West Springfield had several fumbles and the Titans intercepted a pass that was returned for a touchdown. Despite some hard rushing late in the game by West Springfield running back Jonathan Dunn, the Titans sealed the victory quite easily, with a final score of 52-27.
Although the crowd was fairly small at kickoff, the bleachers were almost full by the 2nd quarter. The spectators appeared to enjoy the game, especially the Titans fans. Junior Evan Pfeiffer felt that T.C. played a good game. “We played really well. We forced a lot of turnovers, it was a really exciting game to watch, and the crowd was very supportive.”
The Titans have one more afternoon game coming up, at home against Annandale on Saturday, October 9th. After that, the Titans remaining home games will all be played at night, with the much anticipated arrival of new floodlights at Parker-Grey Stadium. For the first time in almost 40 years, T.C. will have “Friday Night Lights” once again.
This article was written by Steven Fernando and Michelle Avila.
After a lengthy controversy last spring involving the Virginia Department of Health and local religious groups, the Teen Wellness Center opened its doors inside T.C. to Alexandria teens for medical attention and advice. In the second week of March, religious groups objected to the relocation of the wellness center on the basis that the center provides birth control and abortion referrals (not services) to teens without permission from their legal guardians. The objections were considered, but did not prevent the wellness center from making is debut in a grand opening ceremony on September, 16th.
The wellness center was formerly located near Bradlee Shopping Center in a small 21- year- old trailer. Access to this trailer was hindered by traffic and limited hours of service and a lack of public awareness. In early March, the Alexandria School Board took a step forward to fix that problem and approved a budget to relocate the “Teen Clinic.” The cost of relocation for the clinic was estimated at $50,000 for renovation and $25,000-30,000 for supplies and furnishing.
The relocation of the clinic provides benefits to all of Alexandria’s residents between ages 12 and 19. This collaboration between Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS), Virginia Department of Health and mental health are providers that will allow a more efficient use of space and the city’s resources as supervised by an advisory board made up of teens and parents. The clinic will provide Alexandria with wellness promotion, mental health and substance abuse services, physical exams (including routine exams and physicals), immunization treatment for episodic illness and STD’s, and family planning and pediatric health.
To commemorate the merge, employees of the Teen Wellness Center, Alexandria’s Fire Department, and Northern Virginia Aids Ministry (NOVAM) and other local businesses gathered together at the grand opening celebration. Alexandria’s local resources and programs showed their enthusiasm with booths stocked with brochures on the practices of safe sex, health awareness, prevention of AIDS/HIV and other STDs.“We hope to create a link between the clinic as well as our organization.” Kimberly Jappell, a representative of NOVAM answered.
“I feel excited about the Teen Wellness Center opening. I think it’s a great resource for the teens here at T.C Williams to be able to get medical care and the services that they need.” said an employee of the wellness center. When asked what she looked forward to the most she replied, “I am looking forward to meeting some young teen moms and dads that have children and being able to offer mentoring services to them and also parenting classes”
On September 11, T.C. secured their first win over Mount Vernon with a score of 45-14. On the first play from scrimmage, quarterback Doug Murphy, a senior, completed a quick pass to senior receiver Will Rossi, who ran down the field for a touchdown. Mount Vernon answered quickly, however, returning a T.C. fumble for a touchdown. But Mount Vernon’s success was short lived. A lack of offense, combined with several missed field goals and short punts brought the victory within reach for the Titans. Murphy’s accurate arm helped sustain the offense when he completed two touchdown passes to wide receiver Raquan Brunson, a junior. Kicker Manuel Benites, a junior, was on target all game making six extra points and one field goal. Sophomore running back Dealo Roberson rushed for one touchdown and senior linebacker Damien Benton returned a fumble eight yards for a touchdown late in the fourth quarter to seal the Titans’ victory. Spectators who attended appeared to enjoy the game. “They played a really good game,” said junior Louis Ignas. “Hopefully they can keep up the good playing and get the team far this season.” The Titans overwhelmed Mount Vernon for most of the game and secured their first victory of the season. Unfortunately for the Titans, the September 16 game against Oakton did not go nearly as well. The Titans trailed 20-7 at halftime and ended up losing 29-14. “There were too many turnovers and big plays,” said cornerback and receiver, Jalani Winbush, a senior. “We’ve gotta do a better job playing defense in the secondary.”
Despite the loss to Oakton, Winbush says the team is confident and feels they have potential to win the Virginia state championship. “I think our chances at winning a championship are very good,” said Winbush. “We’ve got a very good team, and our coaches are always telling us how much talent we have.” T.C. last won the state championship in 1987, but Winbush and the team appear confident that they could add a title to T.C.’s record this season.
On October 2, the Titans played West Springfield for the homecoming game and rebounded with a 52-27 victory. At halftime, T.C. was winning 7-0 and they continued to build a significant lead during the rest of the game. T.C. scored 24 points in the third quarter, 14 of those points coming off two explosive touchdown runs from Titans running back Zaquan Summers, a junior. The T.C. defense also forced several fumbles and returned an interception for a touchdown. Despite some hard rushing late in the game by West Springfield running back Jonathan Dunn, the Titans sealed a victory.
Junior Evan Pfeiffer felt that T.C. played a good game. “[They] played really well,” said Pfeiffer. [They] forced a lot of turnovers, it was a really exciting game to watch, and the crowd was very supportive.”
The Titans next home game is on October 9 against Annandale at 2:30 p.m. And on October 29th, at 7:30 pm, the Titans will play a night game under temporary stadium lights in their final home game against South County. For more information about T.C.’s football season, check out the T.C. athletics website at: www.tcwilliamsathletics.org.
On September 27, at approximately 3:25 a student pulled the fire alarm, causing the school to be evacuated and the fire department to respond. Students and athletes stood outside waiting for instruction to return to their activities prior to the incident. Within minutes of re-entering the building T.C. administrators announced that the student had been caught. The rest of the student body was informed of the event the following morning.
Fun fashion for every price range!
Fall Fashion Trend: Jeggings
Jeggings are a hybrid between leggings and jeans: super comfy and stretchy, but with the everyday versatility of denim. They are fabulous because they fit like a second-skin but still offer coverage and a thicker material, making them perfect for chilly fall days. They look great with sweater dresses, long cardigans, blazers, chunky heels, and flowy, bohemian style tops.
Ways to wear your jeggings:
Tip 1: Always go for dark-colored or black jeggings, which are slimming and can help legs appear longer.
Tip 2: Nothing is worse than having extra material bunched up around your ankles!
If you’re petite, buy jeggings that come in petite sizes, get them hemmed, or cuff them for a retro look.
What Can I Wear Them With?!
Stress is a key factor in the lives of many people throughout the world. Everyone experiences stress at some point in their lives. Whether it is getting the feeling of “butterflies” in your stomach before a first date or having a full out panic attack, stress comes in many different categories and shows itself in many different forms.
What typically causes stress for a student at T.C. Williams High School? “Keeping up with homework, sports and after school activities is very stressful,” said sophomore Jessica Beaudoin. The average student takes a course load of seven classes. Homework, sports and afterschool activities can overwhelm students.
“Teachers cause stress during the school year,” said junior Delon Bennett. Some students would agree that teachers do cause stress, but is that really true? “Regardless of who the teacher is, students are stressed out by the assignments that the teacher gives, not by the teacher,” said English teacher Jill Divan
When asked if many students come to her with stress related issues, Learning Community 10 guidance counselor Susan Scharf said “Yes, but usually the stress is disguised.” So what causes these stress related issues? “Course load, family issues, parents and other students,” said Learning Community 12 guidance counselor Dante Hicks. Scharf agrees and said that “bullying, harassment and other social issues cause a significant amount of stress on a student.” Stress does not affect every student though. “About 10 percent come to me about stress related issues,” Hicks said.
The mental and physical consequences of stress can be devastating to an individual. Depression, anxiety and suicidal ideations are just a few of the mental consequences of too much stress. Panic attacks, sweaty palms, ulcers and hair loss are some of the physical consequences. Fortunately, most guidance counselors agree that most students do not experience these symptoms. “Less than one percent have the physical and/or mental implications caused by stress overload,” said Scharf.
There are many healthy ways to deal with stress. Some students vent to their friends or talk to a trusted adult. There is a negative side though. “Some students take out their stress on their school work,” said Bennett. This can be very dangerous because a student who does not do their school work may not pass for the year. Students who do this should find healthier ways to deal with stress such as “finding a hobby, reading for fun and exercising,” said Scharf. Students can also become more organized and stop procrastinating on assignments which will make course overload less of an issue.
Can stress ever be eliminated? Should it be? “No it shouldn’t. There is some positive stress,” said Hicks. “It can push a student to perform or study so that they will be successful. It’s kind of like positive peer pressure.” Stress in inevitable in our fast paced society, but it can be controlled and lessened so that students and everyone else can handle it.
Most of the students here at T.C. may know of one Mr. Ashley Leach as a 10th grade English teacher. However, he isn’t quite your run-of-the-mill teacher. He starred in a one-man play which ran in New York City this summer. The premise of the play, called Seymour, was of a man named Seymour, in a church attic. The play is all about religion, and its many paradoxes and fallacies, and it is made apparent early on that Seymour has done something terrible, and he is questioning and discussing that action with his lone friend, a sofa named Melba.
If that play sounds eccentric and even slightly bizarre, that’s because Leach has long been involved with something called ‘performance art’. Leach defined performance art as theatre that confronts topics that are usually considered inflammatory, and therefore usually dismissed as theatre material. He also said that it tended to be “on the fringe” of theatre, and was almost never mainstream.
Leach’s interest in acting began in high school, during which he participated in such plays and musicals as The Wiz and Alice in Wonderland. He became more interested in performance art during his college years at William and Mary, and during graduate school. He also wrote Seymour, saying that he had written it “long ago, and continued to tweak it and change it around until he ended up with the final product. Leach also mentioned his use of the phrase “play in church”, which traditionally has a connotation with misconduct inside a church. However, he used the phrase to a different end, poking fun at while showing respect for the church
Leach’s literary inspirations include William Faulker, Toni Morrison, and most Southern writers. “I am more inspired by literary material versus actors or plays,” he said.
A final piece of advice that Leach offers aspiring actors and writers is: “Expect infinite failure before reaching success. Always take criticism constructively; never take offense at it.”
Check in. Check out. That is what T.C. students are now required to do when going to the restroom during their lunch time. For those who do not know about this, the new school policy includes security personnel waiting in front of the restroom with a clipboard at hand, getting the name and time entered of each person attempting to use the restroom. This system seemed to annoy the students to the point of just walking into the restroom and ignoring the “guard” set out in front of the restroom.
This system diminishes fights and keeps students from skipping classes, according to administration. In addition, the reasoning behind this new regulation is that it will allow for more time in the classroom and less time spent in the hallways. Now although this is logical for some, this system also causes confusion among others. Grace Garrahan, a junior, said, “I think it [bathroom check-in] could be useful under certain circumstances, but usually, it just inhibits students who need to go to the bathroom.” Commonly, students find that the rule of check-in, check-out, is a ridiculous rule that should be removed.
“The rule doesn’t really make a lot of sense,” said senior Trav Clark. This seems to be the confounding remark when talking about the new policy. Clark continues, “If you’re in lunch, you aren’t going to want to hangout in the bathroom any longer than you have to.” Many students are shocked when they hear about this policy; the average reaction is that “it’s a bit ridiculous” or even a simple “it bothers me.”
The average T.C. student is in continuous disbelief about how strict and absurd this policy is for a high school. “I understand the point…but think it’s pointless,” said senior Kasey Kraft, “the point is to decrease time spent out of class, but signing in takes time away [from class time] too.” The consensus is in: Students think that the check-in check-out policy, although it has some use, is a pointless thing to have in place, when students are already out of class being supervised by hall monitors throughout the cafeteria.
The question as of now still stands: what is the point to the restroom sign-ins? How are the students benefiting, if at all, from this new policy? Should the policy be removed? Sophomore Hayden Arp sums up what most students think, “If they are wasting time in random ways, then they should at least tell us the reasoning behind it.”