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Kate Beispel

Staples High School

Applicant ID Number 000293289

Published Writing Pieces Portfolio

Attached is a sampling of the work I have done on my high school newspaper,
Inklings, throughout my junior and senior year. I fulfilled the position of Web Sports
Editor, which included uploading all stories to the paper website and updating the scores
of each teams sports game, while writing for the paper too. I was then chosen as Paper
Opinions Editor, where I not only wrote articles for the paper, but also used InDesign
and other softwares to layout the paper for print. Additionally, I have served on the
Editorial Board of the paper, contributing opinions and discussing issues in order for the
Editors-In-Chief to compile an editorial that represented the opinion of the entire staff.
Inklings is a National Scholastic Press Association and Columbia Press Association
award-winning paper. For more articles not published in the paper, as well as the PDF
versions of all issues that have been printed, please visit Also
attached is an essay that was chosen to be published in my school literary magazine,

Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289

April 13, 2012 Founded in 1933
Debates Continue
as Malloy Pushes
for Change
Web News Editor
Staples students lose in-
terest quickly. In a generation
where teenagers attention spans
seem to be decreasing, Staples
students, at one time inclined
to jump on the Kony 2012
bandwagon, have already lost
interest in this national issue.
The views on Invisible
Childrens KONY 2012 YouTube
video grew exponentially. On
The Rise & Fall of
Invisible Childrens
Kony 2012 Movement
n his State of the State ad-
dress in mid-February, Gov-
ernor Dannel Malloy spoke of
xing Connecticuts weak econo-
my and high unemployment rate.
Lets think big. Lets be bold,
he urged lawmakers, calling for
revival, not a recovery, and he
outlined how that revival would
take placeeducation.
The statistics the gover-
nor cites surrounding education
present a troubling picture of
Connecticut public education, but
it must be said that even the sta-
tistics are being argued over.
He points out almost half of
Connecticut students are in fail-
ing districts41 percent. The
state has seen a 6.8 percent de-
cline in graduation rates. Upon
entering college, as many as 40
percent of Connecticut students
attending Connecticut state uni-
versities or community colleges
are required to take remedial
courses. The achievement gap in
Connecticut is the largest in the
According to Malloy, We
simply need better results.
Malloy says Senate Bill 24,
An Act Concerning Educational
Competitiveness, is aimed at
closing the growing achievement
gap present across the state by
holding teachers and schools
more accountable.
Detractors, however, say
the bill does little to address the
achievement gap, that it demon-
izes teachers and their unions,
and that is an improper use of
standardized test scores.
Regardless of the viewpoint,
!"#$# &' (#)* &)++' ,-.
the bill would change major parts
of Connecticut education. It fo-
cuses on early childhood educa-
tion, grants more money to un-
derachieving schools, expands
the authority given to charter
and magnet schools and tries to
guarantee that all districts are
employing top-notch teachers
and principalswith a specic
!"#"$ &' "($ !"#"$) On March 29, Governor Dannel Malloy met with a consortium of Connecticut high school reportersincluding Inklings
Cheyenne Haslett 13to eld questions about S.B. 24, a bill he has proposed that would alter the climate of public education in Connecticut.
Education Reform Proposals Create Controversy
Budget Approved for 2012-2013 Year
News Editor &
Web Editor-in-Chief
On March 29, the 2012-2013
budget for the Westport School
District was passed unanimously
by the Westport Board of Finance
Standing at $100.2 million, it
is the largest budget in Westport
history and represents a 2.17 per-
cent increase from last year.
eryone, but I applaud everyone
involved in the budget process
because everyone did their best to
maintain the school system in its
current state, Mathias said.
According to BOF member
Avi Kaner, the BOF takes the eco-
nomic climate into account when
deciding the budget.
During difcult economic
times, when citizens are espe-
cially feeling nancial and job
pressure, the Board has delayed
discretionary spending. For ex-
ample, we have only paved about
six miles a year of roads instead
of the recommended 10 miles a
year, Kaner said. As the econo-
my improves, we spend more to
catch up.
The teachers contract, and
thus teachers scheduled wage
increases, are scheduled and not
subject to change.
Largely, with the exception
of PE cuts, the school budget has
been under the radar, said social
studies teacher Rob Rogers.
The BOF held a meeting on
March 29 to vote on the BOE bud-
get. According to Kaner, the BOF
sets the budget, and it is up to the
BOE to decide how to best accom-
modate the budget set by the BOF.
Rogers expressed uncer-
!"#$# &' /012) 3"))*)++#&)+$4 ,-.
'*+#+,*#- '#,"!) At a March 29 Board of Finance meeting, Super-
intendent of Westport Public Schools Elliott Landon responded to
proposals to cut administrative nances.
Continued on page 4
Continued on page 2
Tennis Players Double
Up on the Court
What It Takes to Be
a Student of the Month 13
25 Inside the Issue
emphasis on reforming tenure.
This bill has evoked ques-
tions from parents, teachers
and students. What does educa-
tion mean for high-performing
schools? How will it change the
job of a teacher, or the role of a
student? How many of Connecti-
cuts socioeconomic issues can be
solved through school reform?
The past few months have
been lled with lawmakers and
citizens alike searching for an-
swers to these questions.
Fast-forward to a PTA-spon-
sored forum held at Town Hall on
April 2one of many community
meetings towns have been hold-
Despite the increase, the new
budget has not preserved the jobs
of all faculty in the district; ve
secretarial positions and several
district paraprofessional jobs,
among others, have been elimi-
Board of Education (BOE)
member Mark Mathias said that
the current negotiations have
been impacted by the state of the
local economy.
The past few years have
been difcult nancially for ev-
Web Sports Editor &
the rst day it was posted, Feb.
20, it had three views. On March
5, 58,000. March 7 was its peak,
with 8.2 million. But these views
went down as rapidly as up. By
March 19, there were only 42,800.
The same trend was exhib-
ited by the number of notica-
tions in the KONY 2012 Westport
Facebook group. On March 6,
when it was created, notications
reached 69 posts and comments,
not including hundreds of likes.
When the video rst went
Continued on page 3

The following article, entitled The Rise and Fall of Invisible Childrens Kony 2012 Movement,
is a co-written, front-page news story that gives a closer look into the involvement of students in
social media activism.
Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289

April 13, 2012
Web Managing Editor
viral and students began reposting it on their
walls, Siri Andrews 13 created a Facebook
group in hopes of spreading awareness and
organizing groups to take action. The group
quickly gained over 1,000 members.
The rst few posts were sympathetic to
the cause. Students posted pictures that read
Kony 2012: Stop at nothing, encouraging
supporters to set them as their Cover Pho-
tos. Others urged students to visit the Invis-
ible Children website and purchase Action
Kits, which contain posters, bracelets, and
other items to nancially support the cause.
Even past students wrote in the group, say-
ing things like, Get amped on something that
could go down in history.
However, quickly, those who disagreed
with the campaign began refuting previous
posts. Some members simply stated their
opinions, while others wrote comments in-
tended to mock the situation.
Andrews was forced to delete posts/com-
ments that were disrespectful or offensive
and even delete offenders from the group. Af-
ter these posts were deleted, there were posts
discouraging these kinds of remarks. One girl
wrote, You are all becoming extremely an-
noying with all this ghting, this isnt a debate
group its a support group, if you dont support
it make your own I hate the KONY initiative
Andrews was upset by these comments.
I felt some posts became about people trying
to sound right rather than make a valid point
about the cause. Others, like jokes, were irri-
tating because conicts should not be joked
about in order to see who can receive the most
likes on a post or comment, said Andrews.
However, some people had valid opposi-
tions to the KONY campaign and questions
about the video and Invisible Children as an
I feel that students have been manipu-
Continued from page 1
Checking In with Urban Outtters
New Downtown Store Proves Popular Among Westport Teens
Kony 2012 Movement Short-Lived Among Student Body
lated by a well-produced video.
They are basing their support off a
30-minute video, that is outdated and
false. Though I commend those who
organized the Facebook group and
supported the movement, I feel that
many jumped on the Kony Bandwag-
on, said Rusty Schindler 13.
Another student expressed po-
litical concern. He wrote, Vietnam
also began with innocent American
military advisors going to a country
and region we didnt really under-
stand. Or look at Iraq: we wanted to
depose a dictator, we got a war yeah,
touching video and all but there are
potential consequences to things we
do, even though they may be well-
As quickly as the number of
group members skyrocketed shortly
after the group was created, weeks
later the numbers dwindled, with the
amount of people added per week in
the single digits. Commenting steadi-
ly declined. People were leaving the
group. Many were upset they had
purchased action kits.
s customers walk into
downtown Westports new
Urban Outtters location,
they are greeted by trendy styles,
artsy dcor, and catchy tunes
pumping through the stereo.
The popular retail store
opened in Westport on March 8,
and in the past month, the store
has maintained a steady ow of
trafc, as well as positive feed-
back from customers.
Things have been going
great since the opening, even bet-
ter than we expected, actually,
said Womens Accessory Store
Manager Ayanna Belton. Were
really happy to be here, and ex-
cited to have a new store location.
Before Urban opened in
Westport, the closest store lo-
cations were in Greenwich and
New Haven. Staples students are
thankful to have the popular store
now close at hand.
Its one of my favorite stores,
so Im glad that its much more
convenient to go to now, Maddie
Melnick 12 said. But because its
so convenient now, a lot of people
end up with the same clothes.
Belton said that while the
Westport location is catering to a
variety of ages, the younger age set
is more popular in Westport than
in the Greenwich store location,
where she previously worked.
The store also has less expen-
sive price points than other West-
port stores, creating an additional
pull for Westport teens.
Urban is denitely more ac-
cessible than stores like LF, be-
cause its so much less expensive.
If there isnt a sale at LF, then Id
much rather go to Urban Outt-
ters, Melnick said.
The stores dcor has also
created buzz among customers.
Walls across the store have an
unnished touch, with exposed
brick and cement showing to cre-
ate an industrial loft look.
I like how they did repairs,
but didnt choose standard paint-
ed walls, Eliza Duvall 12 said.
Having the brick show through
gives it a unique look that makes
it more fun to shop in.
Urban Outtters also pro-
vides Staples students, who are
at least 18 years of age, with an
opportunity for employment. For
example, Augie Gradoux-Matt 12
was inspired to apply for a job at
Urban Outtters after her friend
Perrin Judd 12 submitted an ap-
I am obsessed with all the
clothes there, Gradoux-Matt
The one downside to work-
ing at the store, according to Gra-
doux-Matt, is that she has had to
learn to improve her self-control
in order to avoid over-purchasing,
despite her employee discount.
Belton said that the student
employees have had a positive im-
pact on the store.
They are all doing great,
and learning quickly, she said.
I think it is better to have people
who live around here work here,
because it provides an all around
better working experience.
For students who are inter-
ested, the store is now accepting
applications for summer.
$%,.,+ )* #345 !"44/4 016
!"#$% '!()*+$, The latest Urban Outtters location
is located at 101 Post Road East, next to Patagonia.
Another criticism about the Invisible Children
organization was because of the March 15 police de-
tainment of Jason Russell, co-founder of the orga-
nization and creator of the Kony 2012 video. Russell
was found in San Diego, partially clothed, running
through trafc, and exhibiting strange behavior.
Students took to the Facebook group to post
news links about the incident and joke about the
situation. Despite the controversy surrounding
Russells behavior, Andrew Felman 14 still stands
behind the campaign. I think what he is doing to
try and help kids in Africa shouldnt be overlooked
because of one mistake.
Besides a few news articles posted regarding
this situation, the group has stayed relatively inac-
What Invisible Children is most apprehensive
about is that Cover the Night may not be as suc-
cessful as they had hoped. Posts that once echoed
activists eager anticipation of the Cover the Night
event, which takes place on April 20 and encour-
ages supporters to plaster their towns with posters
to make Kony famous, have not been commented
on since the video rst went viral.
I really hope Cover the Night is more than
just a trend amongst students, said Zoe Cohen 13,
who created the Westport Cover the Night event
page on Facebook. I still plan on putting up posters
and I hope other people still do.
But others, like Schindler, are not as hopeful.
As demonstrated by the Occupy Wall St. move-
ment, this is a fad for Staples, and as all fads go (sil-
lybands, Livestrong bracelets, etc.) this one will
fade within a few weeks, Schindler said. He added:
In a completely serious way, I think the only stu-
dents who will actually take part in covering West-
port will be students stoned out of their minds for
4/20 who are looking for something funny to do.
Not to mention Westport will be ridden with every
police they have on staff to stop kids from essen-
tially graphitizing the town with pictures of an Af-
rican warlord.
Even if KONY 2012 ultimately turns out to
just be a fad, what is undeniable is the powerful ef-
fect that social media has had on teenagers.
!"#$# &'()($*+($*#, -. -'.(, /0"*(1#,2 345
!"#$%& ()*% +,- !"*. Westport Police ofcers try to reduce vandalism and other petty crimes on Mischief
October 28, 2011
Westporter Receives Nobel Posthumously
!n1r #risrrt $%&
!"# %&'()* +,-)'(
'tizn (trwrtvN $%)
%).// !(-)"(
Four dozen eggs, nine rolls
of toilet paper, 26 cans of silly
string. This is a typical Oct. 30
shopping list for a certain group
of mischief-makers.
To some, Oct. 30 is just
Hallows Eve, a call for hours of
costume preparation and plan
making. To others, this night pro-
vides an excuse to go out and pull
pranks around town once the sun
has set.
Dubbed Mischief Night,
the night before Halloween is a
tradition amongst teenagers, re-
served for pranking houses, van-
dalizing property, and commit-
ting crimes.
While some Staples students
admit to taking part in Mischief
Night at one point in their life,
they often call pranks on this
night innocent.
I used to toilet paper houses
with my friends every Mischief
Night, Gabriella Rizack 13 said.
In the past, pranks have not
been limited to just Westport
homes. In fact, Assistant Princi-
pal Richard Franzis recalls van-
dalism at Staples on Mischief
We used to have a grade lev-
el assistant who actually volun-
teered to spend all night on cam-
pus in their car, Franzis said.
Staples is not alone in the
crackdown on security on this
particular night; the Westport
Police Department also employs
extra ofcers on Mischief Night.
We have plain-clothed de-
tectives out in parked cars and
extra people on the roads, espe-
cially because its a holiday week-
end, said Westport Youth Detec-
tive Serenity Dobson.
For participating students,
Mischief Night is a time of excite-
Nobody is going to hear
about minor pranks people did
with their friends, Jack Scott
14 said. People are going to tell
stories about insane things they
did on Mischief Night, and then it
will spread.
Although some students
choose not to participate in the
evening festivities, word of other
pranks spreads around school
Eggs, Toilet Paper & Silly String
A Look Into the Most Mischievous Night of the Year
estport, a small subur-
ban town with a modest
population of 25,000, is
home to a spectrum of residents,
from young families, to busi-
nessmen, to retirees. Thanks to
its excellent schools, Westport
was also the town that Dr. Ralph
Steinman, recent recipient of the
Nobel Prize for medicine, chose
for his family.
We moved to this town be-
cause of Staples, said Alexis Stein-
man, his daughter, and a graduate
of Staples class of 1994.
This year, the Nobel an-
nouncements thrust Westport into
the spotlight when the late Stein-
man, who lived on North Avenue
with his wife, received the presti-
gious award on Oct 3. As the Stein-
man family and the community
celebrated a prestigious honor, it si-
multaneously mourned a great loss.
Steinman died just three days
before receiving the Nobel Prize in
Medicine for his 1973 breakthrough
in immunology, when he discov-
ered dendritic cells. These cells can
be used in therapies and vaccines
to combat autoimmune diseases
and cancer, the very disease that
claimed Steinmans life.
The family moved to West-
port in 1983 from Sleepy Hollow,
N.Y., according to Steinmans other
daughter, Lesley 94. All three of
Steinmans children, the two girls,
and Adam, a son, are Staples gradu-
ates. Although Dr. Steinman was al-
ways on the rst train to New York
in the morning and at work all day,
he still made time for family.
His life as a scientist and fa-
ther were very interwoven, Lesley
Steinmans children described
him as a typical Staples parent.
Adam Steinman 90 was a member
of the Model UN, math team, and
marching band; Lesley embraced
eld hockey and Orphenians, while
Alexis was a cheerleader and mem-
ber of Staples Players. Steinman
attended plays, eld hockey games,
concerts, and parades, despite his
busy schedule. The Staples parking
lot was where Steinman taught his
children to drive.
Steinman could often also be
found at local beaches, from Bury-
ing Hill to Compo Beach. We had
the tide schedule on our refrigera-
tor, Alexis said.
Steinman would immerse
himself in scientic journals while
his children played in the sand. He
would also bring colleagues from
the lab to Westport, the country,
for barbeques; in fact, his daugh-
ter says he was known as the grill
There has been an outpour of
support for the Steinman family
following Dr. Steinmans passing.
Our neighbors left bouquets
and notes saying, we had no idea
a Nobel scientist lived next to us,
Alexis said.
Steinman was a professor at
Rockefeller University in New York
City, where he taught and conduct-
ed research. Education was why
Steinman and his wife moved to
Westport; it also was the founda-
tion of his own success. Steinman
had always been interested in sci-
ence, but became driven to do re-
search in his college years at McGill
University and later at Harvard
Medical School.
He wanted to solve the prob-
lems of mankind, Lesley said.
Steinmans discovery of den-
dritic cells was a major develop-
ment in the eld of immunology.
According to Dr. Joel Kabak, who
teaches AP Biology, dendritic cells
are surveillance cells that help de-
tect pathogens. These cells attach to
the pathogen, engulf it, and display
particles of it, or antigens, on their
surface. Their next stop is lymph
nodes, where they present the an-
tigens for recognition and destruc-
tion by lymphocytes.
Dendritic cells can have a role
in preventing and treating cancer.
The human body is always
producing cancer cells, Kabak
said. Dendritic cell surveillance
can recognize these cells and cause
them to be destroyed by apoptosis.
Because cancer cells have cer-
tain abnormalities that distinguish
them from normal cells, they can be
recognized in an immune response.
Cancer became more than just
a research topic for Steinman. In a
twist of irony, Steinman was diag-
nosed with pancreatic cancer in the
spring of 2007. Steinman used den-
dritic cell therapy, a treatment he
developed, on himself.
He was very keen on getting
the research out of the lab, Lesley
said. He wanted to develop vac-
cines to cure the illness, not just
keep it at bay.
The family believes that Stein-
mans use of traditional chemother-
apy and his own research, in trial
form, prolonged his life.
The announcement of Stein-
mans prize came only three days
after his death on Sept. 30. Al-
though the Nobel Prize cannot be
awarded posthumously, the No-
bel Assembly had announced the
award without knowledge of Stein-
mans death. The committee recon-
vened to discuss the situation, and
ultimately decided that Steinman
will still receive the award.
In the community, Steinmans
loss will forever be felt. Westport
has gained recognition for a Nobel-
winning resident, but it has also
lost a researcher, beach bum, and
family man.
Not only was he a great scien-
tist, Alexis said, but he was a great
Some students even set a
personal goal to pull at least one
prank that will be remembered
for years to come.
One time, my friend and I
wrapped up and taped two orang-
es under the Minuteman statue,
an anonymous junior boy said, in
describing how he took two piece
sof fruit and attached them to the
Westport monuments groin.
It is tradition to wait until
darkness falls to begin pulling
pranks, but the police depart-
ment expects teens out even be-
fore this time.
Once it starts getting dark,
in the evening hours between
nine and 12 are the hours we ex-
pect most crimes to be commit-
ted, Dobson said.
If a student does get in trou-
ble with the police department,
the school may be informed, de-
pending on the severity of the
crime and whether an arrest was
This year, Mischief Night
falls during Homecoming week-
end, worrying certain Staples ad-
We are especially concerned
when Mischief Night falls on the
week of our Homecoming Game,
which it does this year, Franzis
That said, according to
Franzis, Staples will not formally
warn students about the conse-
quences of their actions on Mis-
chief Night.
Informally, we might tell
our students to be safe and care-
ful on that particular weekend,
but that is more of a pre-Home-
coming message than it is a Mis-
chief Night weekend, Assistant
Principal Patrick Micinilio said.
I denitely know people that
have plans for Mischief Night this
year, Scott said. It wouldnt sur-
prise me if the Monday after, ev-
eryone is talking about a stupid
thing one kid did. Im actually
kind of expecting it this year.





&) /)0 &)!(. Steinman stands with his family after receiving the 2007 Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research.




The following article, entitled Eggs, Toilet Paper, and Silly String: A Look Into the Most
Mischievous Night of the Year, comes from the news section and investigates the pranks and crime that
have typically occurred on Oct. 30.
Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289

Tune In to Staples New Music Club
Music is a great way to ll
the community with energy and
happiness, said the co-president
of Wreckers in Tune, Nick Vega
Wreckers in Tune is a new
music club that is composed of
a group of Staples students who
perform live at different venues
in Westport for community ser-
Our mission is to bring hap-
piness to the lives of people that
may be suffering from pain, sad-
ness or even boredom, said Vega.
Students with musical talent
and performing interest get the
opportunity to touch someones
life with their music. Eighty stu-
dents meet every Tuesday and
perform once or twice a month
to spread their love of music.
Vega used to go to the hos-
pital to visit his grandmother
and play the piano for her and
other residents at the hospital
to bring them joy. This inspired
Vega to create the club at Staples.
I would look around and
just see how happy everyone was,
and thought about how great it
would be to do this in Westport,
News Editor
Vega said.
The club gives musicians a
chance to broaden their perform-
ing experiences, by playing at
local venues, assisted living and
nursing homes, and Toquet Hall.
Hungry for More
ts coming to a theater near
you March 23, 2012.
The second I heard they
were making a movie, I followed
it on every magazine and website
I could nd, said Jessica Gross
The Hunger Games tril-
ogy, consisting of The Hunger
Games, Catching Fire, and
Mockingjay, has captivated
readers across the Staples com-
munity. All of them are told
through the eyes of 16-year-old
Katniss Everdeen, the chosen
representative of her district,
forced to participate in an event
where representatives must ght
until only the strongest survives.
Fans like Gross have turned
to every media source for sneak
previews in anticipation of the
upcoming movie, starring Jenni-
fer Lawrence and John Hutcher-
son, directed by Gary Ross.
Basically the only thing that
got me through midterms is the
movie. I literally watch the trailer
every day and look for interviews
with the characters, said Savan-
nah Donahue 13.
The magnitude of excite-
ment for the release of the movie
has stemmed from an obsession
steadily created since the release
of the rst novel by Suzanne Col-
lins in 2008, which held a spot on
the New York Times bestseller list
for 100 weeks straight.
I loved the freshness of
the idea. The fact that Suzanne
Collins was able to write such a
gruesome and compelling book
fascinated me, said Gross. She
wasnt afraid to shock her read-
For addicts to the series like
Kumi Goto 12, who feels emo-
tionally attached to all the char-
acters, the release of the movie
marks months of long awaited
anticipation and hype.
My friends and I have a
group on Facebook for The Hun-
ger Games, said Goto. In the
group we post things we nd
about The Hunger Games, plan
on going to the premiere together,
and its just a fun place to talk
about the books.
Premiere planning is already
in motion for the most dedicated.
In keeping with the popular trend
of attending midnight movie
premieres, as many fans have
done for the Harry Potter and
Twilight series, many Hunger
Games readers plan on purchas-
ing a 12:00 a.m. movie ticket.
I am 100 percent seeing the
midnight premiere, said Dona-
The popularity of the series
isnt restricted to purely leisure.
The Myth and Bible Honors class
has read the rst book as part of
their curriculum, much to the
enjoyment of many student
I loved reading the
books in class because our
discussions gave me a lot of
cool insight into the story,
said Myth and Bible student
Isabel Gasway 13. The books
made me excited about the class
because we all looked forward to
talking about them and almost
everyone read ahead.
As a special event, the
students in the class plan on
attending the midnight pre-
miere for the movie together.
Although Collins has put
Sports Editor
Hunger Games fans anticipate the upcoming movie adaptation
down her pen and ended the tril-
ogy, popularity has yet to cease.
Ryan Moran 13, a self proclaimed
original Hunger Games fan has
loaned his copies to meet the in-
satiable needs of those looking to
get their hands on the books.
More people have asked me
to borrow the
Hu ng e r
Games than any other book I
own, he said.
First period on the morning
of March 23, expect worn out stu-
dents, buzzing with post-movie
reviews, chugging a cup of coffee
on the way to class. To all those
attending the premiere, may the
odds be ever in your favor.
d to
!"# #%" &'(") *"&+,- (from top right clockwise) Hunger Games character Efe Trinket announces that Katniss Everdeen will be participating in the Hunger Games instead
of her sister; Katniss ghts in the Hunger Games and faces death; Peeta Mellark banged up after a rough battle; Katniss and Gale Hawthorne converse prior to Katniss being
drafted for the games.
The only thing
that got me
through midterms
is the movie.
- Savannah Donahue 13
It provides musicians with
performance opportunities in the
area, as well as the ability to meet
and connect with other Staples
musicians, said piano player
Danny Pravder 12.
It's an awesome thing to
be able to share your music with
other people, and it is something
that this club really taps into,
said violinist Sam Weiser 12. On
top of that, the performances are
at cool places where you feel re-
ally appreciated, so it is just an
incredible experience.
Every type of musical tal-
ent is recognized in Wreckers in
Tune, and even someone who just
has an interest in media and per-
forming can join.
The club has already gotten a
warm-welcome from the commu-
nity. Many venues have begged
them to come back and have sent
thank you letters to the per-
formers for making someones
day. This kind of appreciation
and gratitude is the reason why
the club started and continues to
That feeling is just awe-
some- when you know that you
have made someone's day, Vega
Its an awesome thing
to be able to share
your music with other
Sam Weiser 12
Wreckers In Tune booms in its rst year of existence

Inklings / February 17, 2012 /

!"#$#% $'()* +,#- $") #++./.'0 "1*2), 2'-)% 3)4%.$)
!"#$#% 45 ,56), /"'%.* 789
.!'/+,& #0 #%"+1 201#"- (from top left clockwise) Mike Ljundberg 12, Austin Alianello 12, and Jack-
son Ullmann 14 play alongside one another; Seth Eugley 14 plays guitar for his peers; Wreckers in
Tune smiles for a group photo; Nica Wardell 15 plays a violin solo.
The following article, entitled Hungry for More: Hunger Games Fans Anticipate the
Upcoming Movie Adaptation, is a story from the Arts & Entertainment section, detailing the hype for
that existed around the release of the movie of the popular book series.
Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289

June 19, 2012
Amber and Colleen
AP Assassination
Kony 2012
Schoolwide Trends
taples students walk the same halls 185 days a year. They take the same path to the same classes, ve
days a week. They see the same people, and normally engage in the same conversations, on a daily
basis. It takes skill to employ this dialectone does not simply talk about school or sports or blunt
kid this level of conversation takes precision and erudition beyond what a student can learn in the class
room. This is language. This is what you would hear in the halls of Staples High School.
!"#$%&'( *+ "#'%,- -#*#"", ./0 #12 2,#11# ('%",&*," ./3
Opinions Editor & Web Managing Editor
#[stuff]staplesstudentsdontsay #[stuff]staplesstudentssay
The following article, entitled Everybody Talks, is a co-written article that appeared in features
section of the technology themed Senior Supplement issue, which is released at graduation and handed
out to all graduation attendees. The article pokes fun at common phrases and issues around the school.
Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289

hen the girls ice hockey
team steps out onto the
rink for their rst game,
theyll be clad not in blue and
white but in black and gold.
For the rst time in its his-
tory, the team has joined with
Trumbull High School to form a
new co-op. According to Charlotte
Axthelm 12, who has been skat-
ing as long as she can remember,
Staples did not have enough girls
this year to run its own team. The
girls from both schools will prac-
tice together under one coach:
Paula Dady.
I am really excited for the
co-op, and I cant stress this point
enough, Dady said. This is a fan-
tastic and unique opportunity.
Under their former coach,
Science teacher David Rollison,
the Staples team lost 18 out of
their 19 games last season. Their
lone win, however, was the rst
since the team was founded.
To Axthelm, victories and
win-loss records are meaning-
less measures of reward when
compared to the camaraderie and
friendship she has gained through
the team.
Weve always had a lot of
fun, which is what I call success,
she said.
Despite losing senior captain
(and the lone goalie) Gwen Moyer
11, the team retains several key
2:15 p.m. signals the begin-
ning of the treacherous walk to
Wakeman for many athletes.
Weighed down by equipment,
water jugs, and medical kits,
practice often starts for players
before they reach the eld.
Other athletes, however,
jump on buses or catch rides to
get to their practices at yacht
clubs, ski mountains, or country
The cost of raising a kid is no
longer limited to basic necessi-
ties. Add the price of a competi-
tive athlete to summer camp, bar
mitzvahs, and sweet sixteens,
and the numbers skyrocket.
Staples students participate
in a myriad of different sports.
As a top state competitor in many
sports, Staples teams can be can
be extremely tough and competi-
tive to make. To keep up with the
level of play amongst top athletes
at the high school level, students
often feel compelled to take part
in multiple out of season teams,
clinics, and tournaments, usually
costing over hundreds of dollars
for each.
The yacht club for sailing
costs about $2,500 to charter a
boat, as well as getting coached.
Then each regatta costs about
$200-$300, said varsity sailing
team member, Henry Dumke 13.
Exorbitant prices are com-
mon in many sports, and the de-
cision or inability to pay can often
hurt an athletes chance of getting
better and eventually making the
I think it most denitely
matters where you play outside
of school. It can give you an ad-
The gymnastics team has
been steadily improving over
their last couple of seasons,
and some players are hoping
that this will be the year for an
FCIAC victory.
Well work as hard as we
can to make it and try our best
to win, Lindsay Kiedaisch 14
The teams home gym
where they practice almost
every dayis actually in
neighboring Weston, making
it tough for Westporters to at-
tend meets.
The drive is a hassle, said
head coach Kelsey Martin, who
started coaching the team last
year. But it would be great to
have more support from the
Even though the team has
lost talented seniors such as
Zoe Heller 11, Kiedaisch has
no doubts that it will recover.
Each year someone strong
is added and helps out the team
by a large amount, Kiedaisch
tics Soars
to the Top
players, such as high-scoring ju-
nior Jesse Lepisto 13.
Kenzie Furman 12 hopes to
be a little more competitive this
year than we have been in the
past, and nds one of their main
obstacles to being a competitive
high school team to be a lack of
student interest.
It can be disappointing
when our only spectators are my
mom and Charlotte Axthelms
sister, Furman said.
But Axthelm says that, over-
all, her teammates have come to
terms with the sports unpopular-
Girls ice hockey is never go-
ing to be the most watched sport
or anything, and were all pretty
okay with it because were just out
there to have fun, Axthelm said.
This lack of interest also ac-
counts for the teams struggle to
recruit players. Unlike other
towns, Westport lacks a feeder
program, such as those for foot-
ball and baseball, for girls hockey.
Thus, they are forced to rely on
girls recruiting their friends and
Girls Ice Hockey Skates To Success
anyone else eager to try some-
thing new.
Although her team does not
currently get as many fans as its
male counterpart, Dady predicts
that the team will earn its crowds
in time through success.
The fans will come, she
Furman, too, has high hopes
for the team.
I doubt were going to beat
all the other teams in the FCIAC,
she said, but I think were going
to have a great season.
vantage, said varsity ice hockey
player, Liam OLeary 13. The
off-season of a sport is often not
looked at as an off-season at all.
It is an opportunity to gain an
advantage over competition bet-
ter yourself for the sake of the
Factor in traveling and
equipment, and the numbers
start to add up.
Usually when traveling, we
have to pay for it ourselves. Plus
the costs of the items like bags
and leotards and warm-up attire:
it can all get very expensive, said
gymnast Lindsay Kiedaisch 14,
who currently practices at the
Gymnastics and Cheerleading
Academy in Faireld, CT.
Gyms and arenas generally
do not cover the costs of fees,
which can cost upwards of a few
hundred dollars once member-
ships and customized logo wear
are added together, unless the
athletes are funded or sponsored
by outside organizations. They
often use fundraising as their
main source of income.
Extra money has to be spent
when Staples sports teams do not
meet the needs of athletes. Stu-
dents with hopes of being recruit-
ed often times have no choice but
to participate in outside teams in
order to get noticed.
College coaches will hold
clinics and be at outside regat-
tas. They never come to Staples
regattas, Dumke said.
Thus. spending money to
join off-season teams provides
an opportunity for recognition
from college coaches.
Those who buy their own
equipment usually prefer it over
the Staples gear provided.
In terms of padding, the
Staples team provides helmets
and glove. I dont use them be-
cause they arent in the greatest
condition, OLeary said. In high-
risk sports, protective gear is vi-
tal in protecting against concus-
sions and other injuries, so many
athletes prefer equipment they
buy specially for themselves.
Despite the high price tag on
various sports, many students
believe that the money is worth
everything they get out of it.
My parents are so extreme-
ly supportive of me in this sport,
and because it is my passion and
not just a hobby, they are willing
to pay these expensive feeds,
Kiedaisch said. I would not be
where I am if they hadnt been so
supportive and paid for this all
these years.
Playing and Paying


Kiedaisch herself is poised
to be a valuable asset to this
years squad, as is Ana Violette
14 and Emily Fishman 12.
Last year, as freshman,
Kiedaisch and Violette carried
the Wrecker squad and fre-
quently led the team with the
highest scores.
But with the addition of
new gymnasts and the return
of familiar faces, training be-
comes even more crucial. Mar-
tins goals are to improve each
girl individually and to add at
least two tricks to each of their
To achieve these goals,
repetition is the most impor-
tant aspect, Martin said.
Martin was a gymnast
in high school, then went on
to major in sports adminis-
tration, coaching, and kine-
siology, which fittingly is the
study of human movement.
Kiedaisch expects Martins
experience to pay off during
Because she was a former
gymnast it is much easier for
her to be coaching a bunch of
high school gymnasts trying
to learn new skills, Keidaisch
This season, Martin hopes
that their success will result
in more enthusiasm from the
student body. She is optimistic
but acknowledges that it wont
be easy.
I understand that this
sport gets little to no recogni-
tion from the student body, but
it really is a spectacular sport
to watch.
News Editor
News Editor
Web Sports Editor
!"#$# &'!&()$'* +($" !'&,(--(#) .&#, +'-$!#&$ !/$0"
!"#$ "&'()* +# +,($(+,*- Former foes Staples and Trumbull now join together as a co-op team.
1&/!"(0 23 )/$' &#-') 456
!"#$# &'!&()$'* +($"
!'&,(--(#) .&#, 0$ !#-$
("#./0 (/0 ("#./0 *1,
2#,*- Ana Violette 14 competes
on the bars
Inklings / November 18, 2011 /
Inside the Most Expensive $ports
The Shopping List
The following article, Playing and Paying: Inside the Most Expensive Sports, comes from the
sports section and explores the costs it takes to be a successful high school athlete.
Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289

Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289

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The following two sections are samples of the work I have done as the Opinions Editor. They
show the work my co-editor and I do in order to layout our section of the paper.
Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289

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Connecticut dritin lcus stcte thct uithin
the jirst six months oj obtcinin c license,
the driter ccn onl drite clone, uith c pcr-
ent or ucrdicn, or c person oj ct lecst zo
ecrs oj ce uho hcs held c license uith-
out suspension jor jour ecrs. Within the
second six months, the pcsseners cre ex-
tended to include immedicte jcmil mem-
bers. Until the driter's :8th birthdc, he or
she must cbide b the :: p.m. curjeu, uecr
c sectbelt, cnd use no mobile detices, in-
cludin those thct cre hcndsjree. Stcples
students ojjer their input on these dritin
Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289

A Family Affair
I hear service from the opposite side of the court and prepare myself for the
monstrous serve that will be shooting towards my face in five seconds. Faintly, the voices
of my teammates cheering on the sidelines ring in my ears. Faced with responsibility and
pressure on a game winning point, my mind is consumed with only one thought, wow, I
am starving.
Speeding down the highway in a blur of yellow, I have 45 minutes to think. Of
course, nobody wants to sit with me because I am cranky. A simple question from a
friend turns becomes a mundane task in my eyes, one that does not deserve a response
because nothing is more important to me than food.
I spy a red car in a sea of silver and I make it my mission to reach it as quickly as
possible. I am greeted with a too-cheery, how was the game? Hungry. Food. Home I
manage to get out before collapsing in my seat. With half open eyes, I make out a blur of
red on the stoplight before me. Silently yet angrily, I curse out the universe, which I have
now convinced myself has all its forces working together to deter my return home.
Perched upon the faded brown wood lies the gateway to my heart, a plateful of
joy. Excess volleyball gear falls to the floor as I tune out my dad and assume position. An
array of colors blend together on the plate and rapidly disappear into a few crumbs.
Plagued with stress and exhaustion, I absentmindedly ignore my family, still
eating at the table, during these common eat-or-die episodes in my life. What used to be a
The following essay was written for my English/U.S. History Collaborative class. It was chosen
to be published in the schools literary magazine, Soundings.
Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289
nightly tradition has turned into survival of the fittest in my most recent high school
years, where all that can be heard in the kitchen are the sounds of knives and forks
scraping against glass plates.
These memories of disregarded family time remain forgotten as the quick-paced
lives of my family members and I forge on. The sign outside my house reads, for sale
and the number of vacant rooms has gone from zero to two. In a conscious effort to
eliminate the silent dinners, my dad has installed a new rule in the house. Regardless of
the amount of unfinished work collecting dust in my backpack, or the new episode of
Gossip Girl sitting on the DVR, we will sit, talk, and eat.
While both of our schedules are demanding and the to-do lists are seemingly
never ending, these problems are forgotten throughout the course of the meal.
Recognizing the effort that my dad has made to keep my family together, even just
through one dinner, though we are all at different locations, reminds me to refrain from
rolling my eyes at his constant texting. A third place is set for my sister on holiday breaks
and a spot is left open for the computer, where my brothers face can be seen on the
screen, even though it is only the morning in China. It took some separation from each
other to realize the importance of eating together.
I pledge my allegiances to food, not just for its obvious benefits of nourishment
and deliciousness, but because it brings the driving forces of my life, the people that
matter to me, back together. A rushed weekday dinner has now transformed into steak
with a side of laughter. Holidays are not just religious, but extended family reconnecting
over a plate of potatoes and a bowl of soup. School lunch breaks up the day with more
than just a sandwich, but with a conversation between friends too.
Kate Beispel
Staples High School
Applicant ID Number 000293289
My loyalties lie with the one thing that keeps me sane, keeps me balanced, keeps
me happy, and keeps me moving forward. Looking back on memories of meals, it is easy
to only remember the food, but looking at the bigger picture, it is the people sitting
around the table, that leave the biggest impression.