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posted: Thu, Feb 1st, 2018

New UNICEF club seeks members!

UNICEF is a national organization that supports children, education, and various other humanitarian issues around the world, and now a local chapter is being established for students to join at Mount Olive High School. Officers and founders of the club are President Nayana Badapati, Vice President Isabella Soriano, Secretary Madison Bednarik, and Treasurer Jared Asprer.

Mrs. Lisa Brown, club adviser, explained that the club mission is "to raise for funds for UNICEF and be advocates for global humanitarian issues along with the UNICEF Organization."

Badapati initially got the idea for the club when a friend of hers from a different school district told her about the UNICEF club at her high school. Badapati said, "I did more research and found that it was such an amazing opportunity for the students attending Mount Olive High School to help suffering kids in third world countries. As a child I used to go around door to door carrying my UNICEF Trick-or-Treat coin box every Halloween and now, as a high school student, I opened my eyes to a whole new level of charity."

Some of the activities the students hope to run to fundraise money and awareness for UNICEF include: penny wars, trivia night, a campus festival, a blood drive in conjunction with Saint Claire's, panel discussions, and more.

Besides raising money for UNICEF, some of the other goals of the club will be to spread awareness of various political and economic issues around the world and advocate for people around the world. Badapati said, "As a strong supporter of global humanitarian issues in third world countries, I believe that there should be more recognition to the UNICEF organization. Overall, partnering with UNICEF gives us students a much bigger insight on these recurring problems."

Any students interested in joining the new UNICEF club should attend its first meeting on Thursday, February 8th in the MOHS Library Media Center. Meetings will take place there every other Thursday during unit lunch.


Mount Olive AP Program receives national recognition

Mount Olive High School was recently named to the College Board's 8th Annual AP District Honor Roll. The distinction recognizes the school's efforts in increasing the number of students from underrepresented demographics who participate in AP courses, while also increasing or maintaining the percentage of students earning AP exam scores of 3 or higher.

Mount Olive High School is one of just 39 New Jersey high schools to receive the distinction.

Inclusion in the 8th Annual AP District Honor Roll is based on a review of three years of AP data, from 2015 to 2017, looking across 38 AP exams.

Criteria for consideration included: increasing participation/access to AP by at least 4% in large districts, at least 6% in medium districts, and at least 11% in small districts; increasing or maintaining the percentage of American Indian/Alaska Native, Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, and Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander students taking exams and scoring 3+ on at least one AP exam; and improving or maintaining performance levels when comparing the 2017 percentage of students scoring a 3 or higher to the 2015 percentage, unless the district has already attained a performance level at which more than 70% of its AP students earn a 3 or higher.

Richard Huisa, a recent graduate from MOHS and member of the Class of 2017 said that many of the AP classes he took at MOHS were reflective of courses he took in his first semester as a freshman at Brown University. Huisa said, "Mrs. French's AP Chemistry course especially was similar to my Chem 0330 course, where problem sets were due before exams, and the exams made use of more difficult questions beyond the presented material. Additionally, many of the labs conducted in my AP Chemistry class were repeated or similar to labs I conducted in college."

Huisa also went on to describe the benefits of his AP Research class, which he said prepared him for writing longer essays: "AP Research also made reading and analyzing research papers second-nature to me, a skill I employed in my Psychology and Biotechnology classes."

Current MOHS junior, Jimmy Spaedt, is currently enrolled in AP U.S. History, AP Government, AP Research, and AP Language & Composition. Regarding his AP experience, Jimmy said, "While AP classes can be rigorous, they open you to a whole new field of knowledge and prepare you for college-level classes. If I could, I would take even more!"

Vileen Singh, a junior who is in AP Calculus, AP U.S. History, AP Research, AP Language and Composition, and AP Biology, said, "AP Calc with Mr. West is my favorite class. I also feel that he's preparing us very well for the AP test. I can recall and draw on information we learned at the beginning of the year."

Sameen Shah, a sophomore, said that "AP Chemistry is a very challenging and rigorous course and is worth it because it helps you grow as a student and prepares you for upcoming classes."

The teachers at MOHS are integral in the success of the program. Mrs. Veronica Cruz, who teaches AP Spanish Language and Culture said, "This class provides the students many opportunities to succeed not only in the academic field but also in the workforce. The AP Spanish class is based on thematic units that give students a variety of opportunities to succeed."

Mrs. Cruz went on to say, "Teaching AP Spanish gives me a great sense of accomplishment. Seeing the students perform to their maximum in this level is very rewarding. Students are immersed in the language from the first day of school in the AP Spanish class and get to achieve fluency."

Mrs. Diane Phares, who teaches AP Studio Art, is always proud and amazed at her students' accomplishments: "Each year, AP Studio Art is a challenge for my students and me as well. No college art course is as rigorous as one that requires 24 pieces of art for a single course. I love the challenge of teaching each student to help develop an individual voice through their art. Art is another means of communication for many and is especially important when your other voices fail."

Mr. Dave Silverstein, who teaches both AP Microeconomics and AP Macroeconomics, said that students recognize the value of these classes right away: "Economics is a fascinating and unique subject that combines mathematics, sociology, psychology and accounting. For most students, it is a completely new, yet exciting way of thinking. A knowledge of economics enables students to prepare and position themselves ahead of economic trends, rather than be passive recipients of them. The study of economics also provides valuable knowledge for making decisions in everyday life, not to mention the numerous high-paying career opportunities that await economics majors."

The MOHS AP Program continues to grow. Last year 426 AP tests were administered, and this year 22 different AP courses are being offered with 715 students enrolled in these various courses.


Marine robotics team to host open house

Mount Olive High School's Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) club will hold an open house on Thursday, February 22 at 7 p.m. Visitors will see club members constructing an underwater remote-controlled robot and will also have an opportunity to pilot one themselves in the club's new 2,000 gallon test tank.

Just as the high school's FIRST robotics team focuses much of its school year on building a robot for competition, so too does MATE. The annual competition sponsored by the Marine Advanced Technology Education Center in Monterey, California challenges students around the world to develop a robot that can accomplish tasks that are needed in the workplace. In this year's contest, students must use their computer science, math, physics, and engineering skills to construct an underwater vehicle that can locate underwater plane wreckage, install or recover a seismometer, and install a tidal turbine and underwater monitoring equipment.

MATE also provides students with the opportunity to explore careers in the marine sciences and helps them understand environmental challenges that need to be solved. In the fall, 18 Mount Olive MATE students traveled to Florida to measure, tag, and release sharks – assisting graduate students in the University of Miami's Shark Research and Conservation Program.

You can follow the club's adventures on its Facebook page: www.facebook.com/loggerheadrov.

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Mount Olive High School
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