The Trumpet The Student News Site of Parkland High School Thu, 23 Dec 2021 18:38:32 +0000 en-US hourly 1 True Crimes that Delve Into the Darkness of the Fashion Industry Thu, 23 Dec 2021 18:24:41 +0000 This article reports on content that may not be suitable for all viewers. Topics include suicide, murder, mental health, and serious injuries. Reader discretion is advised.


The highly loved and coveted fashion industry has been notorious for having a dark side, but some aspects of its origin are darker than others. The world of fashion has been overtaken by an accumulating list of odd mysteries and incidents. From the hitman coordinated death of Maurizio Gucci, all the way to the suicide of Ruslana Korshunova, all of these high-profile predicaments have showcased the tragic reality of death and despair. Below are six of some of the eeriest and most vicious episodes of crime in the fashion industry. 

To start off on this horrific journey of the abyss known as the fashion industry, we have Vittorio Missoni, heir and former CEO of Missoni Fashion House, which his parents started in 1953. On January 4th, 2013, Missoni was on a plane with his wife and two other associates, taking off from Los Roques and en route to Caracas, Venezuela. On that day, the plane disappeared from all radars and on June 27th, 2013, it was confirmed that Missoni’s plane was found in the Caribbean Sea with no survivors. Over the course of the investigation, it emerged that the pilot had an expired medical certificate and the airline had not received authorization to operate. This simple mistake ended up costing the lives of all of the passengers on that fateful day. 

Next up is the Russian Socialite fraudster Anna “Delvey” Sorokin, the one woman notorious for defrauding banks, hotels, and the elite of Manhattan. This case specifically is incredibly unique from the rest discussed here because of how calculatingly genius it was. For context, back in the summer of 2013, Anna traveled to NYC for New York Fashion Week, ended up staying, and created her fake identity. Anna created the backstory of being a wealthy German heiress and invented the idea of the Anna Delvey Foundation – a private members’ club and art foundation – and proposed said foundation to New York’s elite, including Aby Rosen and Roo Rogers. This idea ended up failing, so she then decided to obtain money by creating fake bank statements that showed she had access to about 60 million dollars stored in Swiss bank accounts to put this as a loan application for 22 million dollars to City National Bank. She failed to provide the banks with statements and kept moving on to other investors before giving up. Failing in her attempts to scam others, Sorokin checked into the 11 Howard Hotel and never paid her bill, instead giving staff members hundred-dollar tips for small tasks as compensation. The hotel became suspicious and she was later on evicted in 2017. She continued this similar scam at the Beekman Hotel and the W New York Union Square, but she was evicted both times and the Beekman and W hotels pressed charges. She was arrested in a sting operation on October 3, 2017, and later on convicted with eight charges, including grand larceny in the second degree, attempted grand larceny, and theft of services. In April 2019, she was sentenced to 4 to 12 years in state prison, fined $24,000, and ordered to pay restitution of $199,000. 

Continuing on this morbid journey, we have Russian Supermodel Ruslana Korshunova. Ruslana was a Kazakhstani model of Russian descent. She made her mark on the modeling world by posing for magazines such as Vogue and for designers such as Vera Wang and Nina Ricci. On June 28, 2008, at around 2:30, Korshunova died after falling from a ninth-floor balcony of her apartment in the Financial District in Manhattan. Her death was ruled as a suicide after local police did an investigation. When Ruslana’s friends were asked about her mental state, they all said she was on top of the world and had no purpose for committing suicide. However, one certain concierge noticed something was off. Muhammad Naqib stated ”I was shocked when I saw her on the pavement. She was on the road, small and pitiful, in a puddle of blood, surrounded by a crowd. Her arms and neck were broken. Only the next day did I realize what was wrong. It was her hair! It was much shorter than when I last saw her that night, lively and happy. It seemed like it was cut in a hurry since the ends were uneven.” British TV producer and filmmaker Peter Pomerantsev theorized that Korshunova’s suicide was related to her involvement with Rose of the World, a Moscow-based cult which describes itself as “training for personality development.” When researching for a documentary into Korshunova’s death, he learned that the model spent three months going to sessions at Rose of the World. The sessions encouraged participants to share their worst experiences and recall repressed memories. Korshunova attended the sessions with Ukrainian model Anastasia Drozdova, who committed suicide under similar circumstances in 2009. Their friends reported changes in behaviour after several months at the Rose. Korshunova became aggressive, while Drozdova experienced violent mood swings and grew reclusive. After three months of training, Korshunova left to look for work. Rick Ross, head of the Cult Education Forum, said that organizations such as Rose of the World “work like drugs: giving you peak experiences, their adherents always coming back for more. The serious problems start when people leave. The training has become their lives—they come back to emptiness. The sensitive ones break.” 

Up next, we have Gianni Versace, founder of Versace Fashion House, whose death was caused by spree killer Andrew Cunanan. Gianni was known for Versace which became a global sensation, with designs featuring intricate designs, vivid colors, bold prints, and fresh cuts. He combined ‘luxurious classicism with overt sexuality.” Gianni built the empire from the ground up with the help of his siblings Donatella and Santo. However, one July morning in 1997 changed everything. On July 15th, 1997, Versace went to take a walk on Ocean Drive to receive his morning magazines. Normally, an assistant would do this for him, but he chose to do it. As Versace was climbing the steps of his Miami Beach mansion, a man dressed in a gray T-Shirt, black shorts, and a white hat shot him in the head with a .40 Caliber. At 9:21 a.m, he was pronounced dead at Jackson Memorial Hospital. It was later identified that Andrew Cunanan was the killer. Apparently, he had murdered four other men including real estate developer, Lee Miglin. He was obsessed with Versace and bragged about his friendship with Versace, even though this was more of a delusion of grandeur. He continuously claimed to meet celebrities and be friends with them. Eight days after the murder, Cunanan committed suicide on a houseboat. 

Last, but most definitely not least, is Maurizio Gucci himself, former head of the Gucci Fashion House. What started as a journey to riches for Maurizio turned to tragedy. Back in 1972, Maurizio moved to New York with former wife Patrizia Reggiani to work with his uncle Aldo Gucci. He continued to go through the ropes of the business but moved back to Milan, and in 1983, he launched a legal war against Aldo for control over Gucci after becoming Gucci’s majority shareholder following the death of his father. Later on, in 1986, Gucci fled to Switzerland to avoid prosecution after Aldo accused him of forging his father’s signature to avoid paying inheritance taxes. Gucci ended up selling 47.8% of Gucci to Investcorp. In 1989, Maurizio was made Chairman of Gucci and with the pay raise came extraneous spending. Maurizio Gucci was blamed for spending extravagant amounts of money on the company’s headquarters in Florence and Milan. In 1993, he sold the business for $170 million to Investcorp. On March 27th, 1995, Gucci was shot by a hired hitman on the steps outside his office as he arrived at work. His former wife Patrizia Reggiani was convicted in 1998 of arranging the killing, using tarot card reader Pina Auriemma to find hitmen eligible for the job.  According to prosecutors, Reggiani’s motives were a mixture of jealousy, money, and resentment towards her former husband after he filed for a divorce and demanded shared custody over their child. They argued she wanted control over the Gucci estate and wanted to prevent her former husband from marrying his new partner, Paola Franchi. The impending marriage would have cut her alimony in half. Reggiani served an 18-year sentence (which was originally 29 years). The Italian media dubbed her as “The Black Widow” for placing the hit on her husband. 

These morbid events just go to show the reality of one of the world’s most noteworthy industries. What is seen as a world filled with glitz and glam actually has some horrifying elements to it that no one would see coming.


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LCTI Students of the Month this Fall Shine as Stellar Students Thu, 23 Dec 2021 18:23:33 +0000 As we step into the second marking period of the 2021-2022 school year, it is Parkland School District’s pleasure to highlight the wonderful students who have received recognition as Students of the Month at the Lehigh Career and Technical Institute. This well-deserved honor is awarded to students who display the utmost dedication to their education and lead by example to their peers.  Congratulations to all who have received this achievement! 


Listed below are all LCTI students who have been recognized as students of the month in September and October and their programs of study. 


September Students of the Month

Academic Center: Hailie Reinhard

CAP Academic Senior: Mya Wheeler

CAP Electrical Technology: Isaiah Page

CAP Graphic Communications: Lucas Longenbach

Carpentry: Jonas Geiger

Engineering Drafting & Design: Ashton Grebs

Marketing & Business Education: Josif Osmanovic

SOC Supply Chain Management & Logistics Technology: Mia Eckert

Supply Chain Management & Logistics Technology: Seth Rohrbach

Web Design/Web Programming: Julian Wiewiora


October Students of the Month

Academic Center: Syerra Rosato

Advertising Design/Commercial Art: Jacob Malitzki

CAP Academic Junior: Onielis Maldonado Sanchez

CAP Electrical Technology: Isaiah Page

CAP Graphic Communications: Onielis Maldonado-Sanchez

CAP Office Systems Technology: Mya Wheeler

Carpentry: Marcel Burden

Carpentry: Jesse Dean

Commercial Baking: Alexaundra Batista

Criminal Justice: Emerson Slaughenhoupt

Electrical Technology: Jaden Barasch

Health & Medical Sciences: Kimberly Castillo

Heavy Equipment Operations & Preventive Maintenance: Michael Canales

Heavy Equipment Operations & Preventive Maintenance: Jenaye Saunders

Masonry: Nicholas Borsevich

Pre-Engineering & Engineering Technology: Aayan Yasir

SOC Building Trades Maintenance: Dylan Hoin

Teacher Education: Dakota Gaul

Teacher Education: Semra Sabri


November Students of the Month

Masonry: Jared Bartholomew

Auto Collision Repair Technology: Samara Benavides Buritica

Academic Center: Cooper Campbell

Culinary Arts: Michael Gintz

SOC Indoor/Outdoor Maintenance: Isaac Heald

Carpentry: Tyler Henry

SOC Food Services: Christopher Khalil

Engineering Drafting & Design: Danny Le

Carpentry: Austin Robertson

Criminal Justice: Aden Rosenburg

Academic Center: Jarek Saunders

Web Design/Web Programming: Morgan Savary

Painting & Decorating: Rylee Taylor

Plumbing & Heating: Levell Warmkessel


When asked about this achievement, Kimberly Castillo, October student of the month in Health & Medical Sciences said “When my teacher first told me I was student of the month I was like what!? How!? and then I realized even when there were so many challenges in front of me, I never gave up. When I was struggling with something I always found a way to find a solution. I’ve helped other people when they were having a tough day. I would try to put a smile on their face and let them know it was going to be okay. I may not be the best for academics but I will say I have a heart that is big, that is what makes me the person who I am today and there aren’t a lot of people like that around the world. Being student of the month reminds me that people struggle every day with something and all you can do to help is be there and listen to them.”


Pictured is Kimberly Castillo, October Student of the month provided by LCTI

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Brrrrrr, Winter Sports are Back! Thu, 23 Dec 2021 18:22:31 +0000 With the fall season of Parkland Athletics coming to an end, the winter season is gearing right up. Sports are an all year-round thing here at the high school and it’s taken very seriously by its players. So as the leaves fall off the trees and onto the fields, everything is now inside for the snowy months to come. Athletes are still sweating and training as the weather changes and we can’t be more excited for another year of winter sports. Indoor sports are as follows: Basketball, Indoor Tack, Swimming, Wrestling, and Ice Hockey. I was able to contact some of the coaches and players for some of these sports and pose a few questions to ask about their upcoming winter seasons.

Assistant Athletic director, Mr.Tice, has been involved in winter sports for 34 years. He states the most exciting thing about winter sports is the noise level at the swim meets, especially against Emmaus. Senior leadership is vital to not only a positive team environment, but also within the whole entire school. He states EPC 18 is a strong conference and Nazareth is the one to look out for. Parkland looks forward to an extremely competitive winter sports season.

Photo courtesy of

Leading Boys’  Basketball this year is Coach Stephens. He has been coaching for 25 years and this is his 14th season at Parkland. He says that the most exciting part of winter sports is developing positive relationships with the players and competing for championships. He already has a lot of solid players and some new varsity recruits. One of the team’s biggest concerns on the court will be Central Catholic Coach. Fingers crossed the boys will have another fantastic season!

Coach Ohlson oversees the Girls’ Basketball program and has been doing so since 2018. He loves the raw emotion that comes from fans in the stands of winter sports events. The team is fortunate to have players back from last year like Jesse Schmidt, Paige Spang, Zoe Wilkinson, and Maddie Siggins. Although the team is not allowed to recruit freshmen, the middle school programs are an exception to develop the girls to get ready for the high school game. This year, freshman Delaney Chilcote will contribute to the varsity team. Girls Basketball respects all, but fears none. We look forward to seeing our Lady Trojans dominate the court this year!

Photo courtesy of

On the court for her 4th year of Parkland Girls’  Basketball is Sophomore Lauren Ervin. She said that since it’s winter time and most people are off of sports, there’s more room on the court and space to practice for the season. Lauren’s key to a successful team is a team where everyone wants to win. If that one person doesn’t want the W, then the team can’t function right. But this year, everyone on the team is hungry to win so it will be an exciting season. She believes that Central and Nazareth are the ones to watch out for this season. Varsity beat Central at least once last season, but with enough training the Lady Trojans can take them. Nazareth beat our Lady Trojans last year at Districts with a close game. Lauren believes that this year they will have a comeback and show them what the team can really do!

Coach Trenge will be leading the Boys’ Wrestling for his 3rd year as head coach. The most exciting thing about the winter season for him is tournaments and dual meets. The wrestling team looks for tough, dedicated, and technical students to join this tight team. The team also recruits rising freshmen as well.  While there is a long list of schools to look out for this season including Beca, Nazareth, and Easton, the Trojans will not be stopped this year!

Coach Trenge also oversees Girls’  Wrestling, which is fairly new to Parkland. With that, most of the girls on the team are pretty new as well. Many started in Spring of 2021. Right now, there is a solid group of 15 ladies on the mat.

Jumping in the water for her first season this year on the Parkland Swim Team is sophomore Sada Fleischaker. She likes being a part of a school team and competing with other schools. She thinks the key to having a successful team is to have good leaders and a positive team focused environment. The team she believes poses the most competition this year will be emmaus. Swim fast this season!

Without a doubt, the high schools winter sports teams will take many wins this season. Attached to this article is a link of the team schedules for games and matches this winter. We look forward to seeing our teams excel in these cold months. Go Trojans!


Photo courtesy of

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I Watched the Worst Hallmark Movies So You Don’t Have To Thu, 23 Dec 2021 18:21:18 +0000 Around the holidays there are many things people think of: snow, presents, or even music. But the one thing that’s also constant that no one talks about is the Hallmark Christmas movies. Yeah I said it, they are a constant of stay at home moms or grandmothers and you cannot go a single holiday season without seeing at least one. Due to this fact, I feel this is an overlooked tradition and decided to watch ten of the many Hallmark movies. I should mention I’m scraping the bottom of the barrel and reviewing the ten worst, how bad could it be? So without further ado here are the five worst rating IMDB Hallmark Christmas movies. 


The first movie on our list is the “Santa Switch.” This movie is directed by David Cass Jr. and stars Ethan Erikson, Anne Dudek, and Annie Thurman. Essentially there’s this dad who wants to get good gifts for his kids but doesn’t have the money for gifts for them. His wife has had it with him and divorces him due to him being broke and trying hairbrain business schemes. Then by a stroke of luck (shocking) Kris Kringle himself comes to this household (as he does) and offers him to run Christmas for the year and be “Santa Claus.” So wait a minute, you come into some recently divorced dad’s house and give him the title of the sole bringer of Christmas for the year? Nothing could go wrong with this, right? Well if you said no then I think you need to think a little harder and reevaluate your life choices just like I will have to after finishing all these movies.


Do you guys like watching a couple fight in almost every scene of a movie? No? Well then don’t watch “Baby’s First Christmas” because that’s exactly what you’ll get. Basically the two main characters are rivals who aren’t particularly fond of each other but are forced to spend the holidays together since their siblings fell in love and fell into money troubles. So here’s the thing about this one, I would tell you something if I could even remember what happened in it. It was so bland and tasteless that it left me feeling like I just had a weird fever dream or something of the sort. Bottom line of this one? Extremely uneventful and tasteless might be good white noise in the background however.


Next on our list is “Mr. Miracle”, and to sum up my feelings on this one: it wasn’t as bad as the last two and was a pretty solid movie. It’s not going to become a Christmas classic anytime soon but was something I didn’t absolutely regret or forget about completely. The plot and script were pretty good if not basic: A college English teacher is secretly a guardian angel and is tasked to watch over the main character after her father passes away. There is definitely heart in this movie but it does ignore the number one rule of storytelling, show don’t tell. Instead of showing how the characters are feeling they will outright say something so overt that puts a spotlight on that emotional beat. Overall this one is the best so far and only falls flat in the story department which is unfortunately a very important 

aspect in film.


Home stretch only two more to go and I’m starting to really regret this choice since the last two both have five out of ten stars on IMDB. “Carol Christmas” is just a modern Christmas story. But instead of a greedy old man it’s a blond TV show host who’s so full of herself that she’s cruel to those she works for on Christmas. I think 

honestly the best part of this movie is the ghost of Christmas past and present, played by Gary Coleman and William Shatner respectively. Overall it was alright and inoffensive to me with nothing too notable to go in detail for.

And we’re at the end, the home stretch, “The Santa Incident”. This movie’s plot is so ridiculous I was looking forward to it from the start of this. Santa flies over a military zone and is shot down by government. Santa hides with some random family while the FBI chases him down. You can tell a movie’s acting is bad when the best part of the movie is the child actors. The villain was pretty funny and I just feel the plot itself is so funny by itself that it’s worth a look if you’re interested. Just don’t hope for the next holiday classic.

And that’s the end of the list. I have officially sat through 10 of the worst rated Christmas movies on IMDB. Would I do it again? No. Were these movies that bad? Maybe? I’m just numb to them at this point. This was an interesting festive ride to say the least and happy late holidays to everyone!


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Grading the First 10 picks in the 2021 NFL Draft Thu, 23 Dec 2021 18:20:32 +0000 Coming into this NFL season, one thing that everyone was excited for was how these NFL prospects were going to perform. One of the prospects that everyone was excited to see was Trevor Lawrence. In 2018 when the Clemson Tigers were entering that season with Kelly Bryant as their starting quarterback they weren’t expecting anything less of a National Championship. When Kelly Bryant was struggling mid-way through the season they relied on freshman quarterback Trevor Lawrence. That season Trevor Lawrence proceeded to have one of the best seasons a freshman can have. He was named National Freshman of the Year and won a National Championship that same year. The clock instantly started ticking for this 2021 draft class to see who would draft Trevor Lawrence. With this much hype going into this draft, all these experts thought there would just be Trevor to remember, but these experts couldn’t be any more wrong. Going into the 2020 college season, there were some absolute studs that showed Trevor wouldn’t be the only one to remember. That is why this 2021 NFL Draft class has been one of the most hyped-up draft classes in these past years, and for good reason. These rookies this season have made a statement showing that they are here to stay and that just because they are young in their NFL career doesn’t mean anything. They will play as if they are a 10 year old veteran and make smart decisions. This draft class since day 1 has blown everyone’s standards and has left their mark in the NFL as a rookie, and with the NFL season at its halfway mark I thought why not grade the top 10 picks in the draft. Now keep in mind these grades are just based on how they have performed halfway into the season these grades aren’t final. 

Pick 1 Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence, Quarterback, Clemson

With Trevor Lawrence struggling early into his rookie season. People were questioning whether it was his fault or Urban Meyer’s, and with the firing of Urban Meyer. This team is trying to take a step in the right direction. Trevor Lawrence (Getty Images)

The number one pick in this year’s draft has been mediocre and has shown flashes of being a great and good NFL quarterback, but the only thing that has been holding him back this year has been the team. During the first three weeks, Trevor Lawrence was just not the Trevor Lawrence we had seen in college. He was throwing a lot more interceptions than usual and was making really bad reads that he was to blame for, but another part was that in college he had one of the better offensive lines in college which didn’t give him the experience of pocket pressure. Since he wasn’t used to dealing with pocket pressure at college,  once he got to the NFL, he was getting blitzed, sacked, making bad reads, and turning the ball over a lot. The first three weeks for the rookie were terrible. He was 54.24% accurate and that ranked 34th overall in the league out of quarterbacks. He threw for 5 touchdowns but had 9 interceptions, and had a 60.3 QB rating. Since those first three weeks, he has thrown for 5 touchdowns and 1 interception. This is a big improvement from his first three weeks, he also has 2 rushing touchdowns to go along with his 10 passing touchdowns, has limited his turnovers, and is starting to run the ball more. One big positive for Trevor Lawrence is that whenever he throws the ball more than 20+ yards down the right side of the field he has a higher passing rating than the league average. One major concern that I have with Trevor is that he is flukey. He will do good one game but then will go on a streak of him being average and for being a number one pick you don’t want to be average. For example, his bad percentage throws are something to look at where the first three weeks they were more than 20% which is terrible, but then they went down to less than 10% the following week. His passing yards are also streaky, but this isn’t all on Trevor it is on the whole team and coaching staff because they have also failed him. As a grade, I give him a B-.

Pick 2 New York Jets: Zach Wilson, Quarterback, Brigham Young University

Zach Wilson this year has taken a lot of pressure from his offensive line and has struggled as a whole. One big question that these Jets fans have begun questioning is, is it his fault or the offensive line’s fault?
Image comes from (Adam Huger) (Adam Hunger)

The number 2 pick out of BYU had a good opening debut showing promise to the New York Jets fan base. He threw for 2 touchdowns and 1 interception against the Carolina Panthers to go along with 258 passing yards but since his debut, he has regressed. He isn’t all at fault when he has gotten sacked 25 times this season in 8 games, and every time Zach Wilson has dropped back in the pocket he has gotten pressured 27.8%. One thing to blame on him is that he has poorly placed the ball in his receiver’s hands with a 19.8% of the ball poorly thrown. Coming out of college he was known for placing the ball into the hands of his receivers, and for being very accurate which he has showcased a little bit but for most of the time he has been pressured into throwing poorly placed balls. Two positives are that because he is still young in his career he still has time to learn from his mistakes, and the other being is that coming out of college he was known for his deep ball and when you look at his Next-Gen stats he has attempted 32 pass attempts for more than 20+ yards and has complete 15 of them and 2 touchdowns which is a really good sign that as a rookie he can throw the ball deep and very accurate. When given time in the pocket which he has been rarely given this season he takes advantage of it and it showcases in his deep ball accuracy 46.8%. I grade his rookie season so far as a C- because he has yet to amaze me except for his week 1 debut and week 4 game. Until he gets an offensive line, he will be in trouble for the next couple of years. This could be another Sam Darnold experience for the New York Jets fan base yet again.


Pick 3: Trey Lance

When the 49er’s moved up for Trey Lance many people questioned. Why would they do this when they already have a quarterback that they are paying over $20 million a year? Image is from (Jayne-Kamin Oncea/ USA TODAY)

The 49er’s have been sticking to their word to where Jimmy Garropolo will be their QB1. Which hasn’t given Trey Lance an opportunity to see the field except for 2 weeks of playing time which isn’t enough to grade him on. In those two weeks I will say this he showed glimpses of what is to come for the 49er’s franchise and it was amazing. He displayed his running and passing ability along with the ability to score, which has been something these rookie QBs have struggled with which is scoring but Trey has figured out a way in those two weeks, plus the one snap against the Lions where he ran it in. As for a grade it is going to be incomplete because not enough games played to grade him off.


Pick 4: Kyle Pitts

Here in this image, we can see Kyle Pitts displaying his ball-catching abilities with one hand. Another thing is this game against the Dolphins Kyle Pitts had 7 receptions for 163 yards. Image comes from (Sam Navarro/ USA TODAY)

Entering this draft everyone knew that the first three picks would be quarterbacks but after the third pick people were wondering who the Falcons would take. Some people were speculating Justin Fields to possibly replace Matt Ryan or would they take a receiver to replace Julio Jones. Well, they ended up taking a hybrid. What I mean by hybrid is they took a receiver and a tight end in Kyle Pitts. Kyle Pitts is too big to play wide receiver but he is too fast to play a tight end. Entering the NFL one thing people were watching for him was how he was going to be utilized. The Falcons in the first two weeks were trying to get him the ball but then stopped once it came down to week 3. This season Kyle Pitts has had two big games where he put the league on notice in where he had more than 100 yards receiving in those both games. If you exclude those two games he is averaging 42.7 yards which is something he will need to improve on but at the same time, this rookie is constantly being double teamed by the other team since the Atlanta Falcons have no other offensive weapons. One thing that stood out to me is that Kyle Pitts this season has only dropped the ball two times but has been targeted 82 times and has caught the ball 49 times, and has 709 receiving yards and 1 touchdown. For a grade in his rookie season so far I would grade it as a B-.


Pick 5: Ja’Marr Chase

Ja’Marr Chase this year has impressed everyone’s expectations that they have had for him this season. He has shown these NFL experts why the Bengals took a wide receiver instead of an offensive lineman. Image comes from (Jeff Dean/AP)

After not playing his 2020 collegiate season Ja’Marr Chase was picked 5th overall and got to play with his old teammate Joe Burrow who he won a National Championship with. Entering the preseason there were many worries with Ja’marr Chase and catching the ball. People were saying he was dropping the ball too many times and Ja’marr even admitted that the ball looked different than a college ball, but he put all those worries to rest once the season started. In Ja’Marr’s first game he already had a 100-yard game as a rookie. Just to keep in mind it took Davante Adams 5 games to get his first 100-yard game and Ja’Marr did it in his first game. His rookie season has gone better than expected with him having 958 receiving yards and 8 touchdowns, plus 17.4 yards averaged per catch to go along with his historic season, and has had three 100 yard receiving games this season. He has been a big reason why the Bengals have been doing so well this season is because of Ja’Marr Chase and how he has been such a big contributor to that offense as a rookie. I grade his rookie season as an A-. The only thing that worries me about his rookie season is how he is streaky as in he does good but then will have multiple games under 60 yards. 


Pick 6: Jaylen Waddle

Jaylen Waddle was the second receiver taken off the board and this came as a surprise to people considering he didn’t play most of his 2020 collegiate season. (Sam Navarro)

Jaylen Waddle has impressed everyone since his week one debut where he caught 4 passes for 61 yards and a touchdown. Jaylen is versatile where he not only catches the ball but he also runs the ball and returns the ball for the Dolphins. At the beginning of the season, he had issues with dropping the ball but since the first couple of weeks, he has lessened his drop rate to 0% in the past weeks. There have been games where he has done bad but he has been one of the more consistent rookies where you know what you will get out of Jaylen. One thing that people like about Jaylen is the speed and separation that he can obtain. I grade his rookie season as a B because he has stepped into the WR1 role since Devante Parker has been injured but one big concern is that he just doesn’t have that many touchdowns.


Pick 7: Penei Sewell

Penei Sewell has had early season struggles, but once he switched positions he started to perfrom a lot more better and has improved tremendously. (Gregory Shamus)

Penei Sewell has struggled early on this season because of a position change. You can’t put the blame on him but Penei was then switched back to left tackle because of a Taylor Decker injury and has been good since he has been moved back to his original position and has felt more comfortable in being left tackle. Penei so far into his rookie campaign has only allowed 5 sacks and has had 8 penalties called on him but has played 781 offensive snaps which are good for an offensive line rookie considering all the good defensive players on the defensive line are the defensive ends. As a rookie Penei Sewell has stood his ground, sure he had early-season struggles but that is also due to his position change. Pro Football Focus the holy grail for offensive lineman has graded him as a 75.6 overall this season. As for me, I grade his rookie season so far as a B-. The one big issue the Lions are going to have to learn is what position is he going to play left or right tackle?


Pick 8: Jaycee Horn 

Jaycee Horn was the first cornerback taken off the board and proved why during his first three weeks. (Chanelle Smith-Walker)

When Jaycee Horn was taken at pick 8 people thought that he was a bit of a reach considering people thought that he wasn’t even the best cornerback in that draft, but Jaycee proved everyone wrong in the first three weeks that he played. His season was short-lived though, he ended up breaking multiple bones in his foot during week three but he showed a lot of glimpses of being a lockdown corner in those three weeks. His NFL debut didn’t go as planned but he showed promise. He was targeted 4 times allowing 2 completions and 1 touchdown allowed but he played 98% of the snaps. In his second week, he was targeted 2 times, didn’t allow a completion, and had an interception. Quite a way to improve from his week one debut. In his third game, he was injured but he was targeted one time and didn’t allow a completion. I feel like I could grade Jaycee very high but just like Trey Lance, we were only given a sample of what he could do so his grade will be incomplete.


Pick 9: Patrick Surtain II

Pat Surtain has proved many times this season why he is the best cornerback in this draft. (Aaron Ontiveroz)

Coming out of Alabama Patrick Surtain was projected to go in the top 10 in the draft. Some considered him to be the best cornerback in this draft, but he was the second cornerback taken in this draft and his rookie season has been nothing but exciting. Coming into the league is hard enough as a rookie but entering the league as a rookie and cornerback one is hard enough because that means week in and week out you are guarding the best receiver on the other team every week and Pat Surtain has lived up to that challenge. He has 4 interceptions this season and has allowed less than 40 receiving yards in 10 out of 12 games played. He has a 47.1% complete percentage rate when he is targeted which is impressive as a rookie cornerback. One big struggle for Patrick is that when he gives up a completion he allows a lot of yardage gained on that play for the other team, he allows 11.3 yards allowed per catch. It could be a defensive scheme. This could explain why he gives up these big plays, but it is worth noting this. Another thing I would like to see him get more involved in is blitzing because that would make him one of the biggest X-Factors in the NFL where every offense would need to keep a lookout for him at all times. I grade his rookie season as an A-.


Pick 10: DeVonta Smith

Heisman Winner Devonta Smith has proven this season that all doubts these scouts had this season on his body build doesn’t matter and that he can be a wide receiver one in this league.(Associated Press)

When DeVonta Smith declared for the 2021 NFL Draft all experts had him going as high as the number 2 pick, but as the draft was getting closer day by day. Scouts were all scared about his body build saying that he was too skinny to play wide receiver and that he could fall out of the top 10. This came as a surprise to some, because how could a Heisman Winner who just had 117 receptions and 1856 receiving yards go from being the projected number 2 pick to falling out of the top 10. The answer was that most NFL teams didn’t believe his body build would hold up in the NFL, but the Philadelphia Eagles didn’t care and they made the choice to take DeVonta Smith and haven’t looked back. DeVonta Smith has been wide receiver one for the Eagles just as a rookie and has put up historic numbers for this team. He can single-handedly change the game’s outcome and has proven that many times this season, whether it be him distracting the defenses by running a route or getting past the cornerbacks for receiving yards DeVonta can change a game. This season he has 50 receptions for 701 receiving yards and is averaging around 53.9 receiving yards a game. The biggest issue DeVonta Smith has had to face this season is being a wide receiver one. With DeVonta being wide receiver one for the Eagles he always is matching up against the best cornerback on the other team or getting double-teamed. With that being said the Eagles have finally made a solid pick in the first round after losing out on Justin Jefferson and D.K. Metcalf in back-to-back drafts. I grade this pick as a B+.


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“The Chill” Tue, 21 Dec 2021 18:24:57 +0000 The typical lunchroom chatter fills the air,

But I find I cannot participate, or rather,

I am unwilling to participate

in the same full yet exhausted conversations as the ones constructed by my peers 


What once was a wave of warmth coursing through the atmosphere is now frigid,

The chill that surrounds me raises bumps under my sleeves and nips my ears with cool whispers of resentment


Why am I unable to fit in?

Is it because I am unwilling to float into the icy breeze that whilst carrying the flurries of scandals also garners the weight of social acceptance?


The stiff puffs of frozen air spin through my frozen mind,

And I carry on feeding the tepid currents that surge from the depths of my heart and keep me warm


A note:

The theme of the individual versus society is a common one amongst high school students and everyone has felt the cold grasp of alienation at some point in their lives. When it comes to the vicious rumors and gossip that tend to control the social hierarchy, it is unbearably easy to find oneself in isolation after resisting harsh societal norms. It is especially important, however, for individuals to continue keeping up their sound morals and continue resisting the pressure to succumb to the cruel standards of popularity.

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Parkland High School’s SADD Club and National English Honor Society Give Back Before the Holidays Tue, 21 Dec 2021 18:22:49 +0000 The Parkland High School Students Against Destructive Decisions Club recently presented a unique opportunity to promote a good cause. On December 8th, 2021, the PHS cafeteria was filled with laughter and joy as students participated in a bustling gingerbread house building competition following a collection of gifts. These weren’t just any gifts, though–all gifts donated are about $5 and provide teens who are struggling with a healthy activity to replace drug use. Donations will go to the Valley Youth House, an organization that provides shelter and necessities to kids and teens in the Lehigh Valley.


The National English Honor Society recently hosted its first essay editing workshop for juniors and seniors who are applying to college. Following a training session for peer editors who are a part of the honor society, students had the opportunity to have their essays reviewed by their very qualified peers for free. In addition to being a great resource for students who need assistance in the long, stressful process of applying to college, it was also an opportunity for tutors to practice their editing and sharpen their skills. Overall, this is an event that will definitely be continued in future years.

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Definitive Ranking of the Seasons of the Year Wed, 20 Oct 2021 19:20:39 +0000 Although all four seasons of the year have something unique to offer, many people favor them differently. Taking into account weather, holidays, and other events during the season, here is my definitive ranking of the seasons of the year.

4. Spring

There are many reasons that spring is the lowest of the rankings on this list. Although many people will disagree with me, I cannot put it any higher. Allergies are in full swing, the weather is very unpredictable and usually cold, and there are not many holidays other than Easter, which not everyone celebrates. The only upside of spring is that summer comes next and the days tend to get longer. 

3. Winter

Although I love the cold and Christmas, I have to put winter at number three. The days get shorter and before you know it the sun sets at 5 o’clock. I love snow storms especially when there is a foot of snow or more; however, we have too many tiny 1-3 inch storms that are just a nuisance. 


2. Summer

Summer is my second favorite season mainly since school is out and you can go back to doing what you like to do. The main downside of summer is the scorchingly hot days. I can tolerate 85 degrees and below but anything higher becomes exhausting. Long days are also a reason I love this season. 


1. Fall

Taking the number one spot on my list and being unarguably the best season is fall. Although school is back, fall provides the perfect balance of temperatures so you can wear a t-shirt and jeans without feeling too hot or too cold. Halloween and Thanksgiving are two great holidays and by that time, you can start to wear my favorite article of clothing: sweatshirts.

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Soup Season is Quickly Approaching; Here are Parkland’s Thoughts Wed, 20 Oct 2021 19:20:08 +0000 As the days get colder and our clothes get heavier, one thing is certain…Soup season is upon us!  Many soup fanatics (like myself and other Parkland students) may be wondering which is the best kind of soup.  To get to the bottom of this very important issue, I asked some students what their favorite soups were. Here’s what my fellow Trojans had to say; 

9th graders favorite soups (ranked by popularity):

  1. Chicken noodle
  2. Clam chowder
  3. Ramen
  4. Tomato
  5. Sancocho
  6. Beef stew

10th graders favorite soups (ranked by popularity):

  1. Chicken and wild rice 
  2. Broccoli cheddar 
  3. Pho
  4. Chilli
  5. Tomato
  6. Clam chowder

11th graders favorite soups (ranked by popularity):

  1. Chicken noodle
  2. Italian wedding
  3. French onion
  4. Split pea soup
  5. Gazpacho

12 graders favorite soups (ranked by popularity):

  1. Tomato
  2. Broccoli cheddar
  3. French onion
  4. Chicken noodle
  5. Vegetable soup
  6. Minestrone soup
  7. Sancocho
  8. Potato leak
  9. Princess soup
  10. Chicken tortilla soup


  • Mr. Laub: New England clam chowder
  • Mrs. Beck: French onion
  • Mrs. Kautzman : Lobster  bisque
  • Mr. Nabavian: Ash eio

No matter the type of soup they prefer, many students had one common opinion…Panera has the best soup.  I have one more important question; what’s your favorite soup?

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Taking a Stand for Character Wed, 20 Oct 2021 19:17:25 +0000 Beginning this school year, Parkland High School is implementing a new system to promote trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring, and citizenship–also known as “The Six Pillars of Character.” Character can be described as a person’s defining trait, and it is important for Parkland students–now more than ever–to embrace positive characteristics and promote “The Six Pillars of Character.” 

Photo courtesy of Jess Benninger; A vibrant banner featuring “The Six Pillars of Character” can be seen outside the D-wing at Parkland High School.

CHARACTER COUNTS! (CC!) is an organization that currently operates out of Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, and was founded by Michael Josephson and the Joseph and Edna Josephson Institute of Ethics in 1992. The CC! initiative works to improve various environments, including educational, professional, and social, by promoting “The Six Pillars of Character” and encouraging students to become more mindful of how they are interacting among their surroundings and with others.

While walking through the halls of Parkland High School, students’ peripherals are flooded with bright, rainbow-colored banners displaying six traits that are especially important for students to bring to life throughout the transition back from a challenge-ridden year. Parkland students and staff are working hard to bring these characteristics to life, but how exactly does this look in a school of nearly 3,500 students?


Trustworthiness: Between cheering on peers at sports games and showing up to support the arts, Parkland students can always be trusted to support one another.

Respect: Students and staff at Parkland share immense respect for each other’s valiant efforts to educate, learn, and grow in every aspect.

Responsibility: Parkland teachers show responsibility by offering a listening ear and dependably offering the very best materials to expand students’ knowledge; students return the favor by consistently putting in their best efforts in class and in extracurriculars.

Citizenship: Parkland students show incredible unity and Parkland pride by consistently repping Parkland sports teams, clubs, and theater groups.

Fairness: Good sportsmanship and theater etiquette are two of the most abundant examples of fairness at Parkland High School.

Caring: There is no better way to describe the Parkland community than “caring.” Students and staff are always there to lend a helping hand. Whether it’s assisting a new student in finding their way to class, or being there for a friend during a particularly difficult day, Parkland students and staff always find a way to be caring.


The month of September is represented by the red pillar: caring. Parkland students have the opportunity to be noticed for demonstrating this important trait. As a reward for their efforts, students may win the chance to have Parkland’s newest luxury–the red couch–delivered to a sporting event of their choosing. For more information regarding the new “Six Pillars of Character,” take a look at this video ( brought to you by Mr. Moniz.


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