JROTC members visit FAU for scholarship opportunity


JROTC sent 12 seniors to Florida Atlantic University on Nov. 1 for a chance to win scholarships for free tuition for four years of college.

Instructor Sgt. Major Jorge Cruz and the group took a tour of the Boca Raton school and attended a football game.

The winners were announced in a raffle at halftime. However, no one from Cypress won a scholarship. Sgt. Major Cruz said the event was still a great opportunity for the students to take a look at the university.

“The students who went were eligible for free tuition for all four years,” he said. “It’s a huge honor because it gives the parents a weight off their backs because they don’t have to pay anything if they win.”

Senior Whitney Gunderman said even after viewing FAU, she still wants to look at other schools.

“I may look at other options,” she said. “I wanted to get out of Florida, but the scholarship would’ve made my decision even harder.”

Gunderman said no matter what, she wants to pursue a military career after high school.

“I want to go to West Point Military Academy. Or if I don’t go there, I want to join ROTC at the university I decide to go to,” she said.

Although none of the students got a scholarship, Sgt. Major Cruz said he is hopeful for his students’ futures after high school.

“I’m glad that they had the opportunity to look at a wonderful university and see what exciting new things lay ahead of them,” he said.

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Photography Club fundraises for supplies


The annual Photo “Phun” Night fundraiser hosted by the Photography Club on Oct. 22 aimed to educate students about photography-related activities and raised $270 to pay for future supplies. IMG_0742

“The whole point of the event is to get people aware of the club and photography. We want to keep expanding it and getting people into the community,” senior and club president Beatriz Gasparetto said.

Photography class teacher Elizabeth Jenkins said the event was very successful and about 30 people showed up.

“The money ends up going to the photography classes because even though we charge dues, the money does not cover all our materials because photos are expensive,” Mrs. Jenkins said.

The night was promoted through social networks so the information was accessible to all students interested, and it featured activities such as a visit to the darkroom, a Photoshop activity, how to edit pictures with an iPhone and photo booths.

“We promoted by handing out flyers throughout school and to all the art and photography classes,” Gasparetto said. “We also have a Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram where followers could see the announced event.”

This event has been going on for two years and the officers said they hope that it will continue throughout the years. Senior Esther Song, one of the vice presidents for the club, said that compared to last year, the event had improved because more people were participating.

“It seemed that people were interacting more with each other and had more fun due to the photo booths,” she said.

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Book Club to host book drive


The Book Club will have a book drive in conjunction with the Harry Potter Club to benefit organizations around South Florida such as Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital. The project will take place Dec. 1-12.

“It’s a nice thing to give the gift of reading to people who might not have as much opportunity,” book club sponsor Jeanne Kielbasa said.

Ms. Kielbasa said she is all for this project and is very excited to see the outcome of the club’s first event.

“Reading is not just looking at words on a page. The act of reading can really relate to others by teaching lessons or giving new insights on life. Some people might just find entertainment in reading,” Ms. Kielbasa said.

Ms. Kielbasa said the book club formed last year and she believes it can contribute in a big way to students, which was the main reason she became a sponsor.

“Book Club adds an appreciation and love of reading to the school, especially when students are able to discuss and share ideas about book topics while being in a classroom setting with their peers,” Ms. Kielbasa said.

Junior Rachel Gordon, the club’s president, leads the decisions in coming up with the activities and events, such as the book drive.

“The main idea of the project is to bring the gift of reading to others who can benefit from books,” she said.

Gordon first started the club in her sophomore year to create a place where she is able be able to discuss the different aspects of books with people who also share the same interest.

“It’s fun to read and great to come together and discuss books with friends and peers. I used to not be able to do that very often but when I started the club it opened up a brand new opportunity for all students,” she said.

So far book club has about 20 to 25 members. Ms. Kielbasa said she hopes there will be more members this year to participate in reading and help out with the book drive and other events.

“It would be great to get more members this year to spread the idea of reading by telling others about the drive,” Ms. Kielbasa said.

Meetings are once a month on Fridays right after school in room 855. Anyone can join and there are no dues.

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Harry Potter club plans to have cosplay contest


The Harry Potter Fandom Club has events planned for members to look forward to this year, including contests and movie screenings. The club has meetings every Thursday in room 833 from 3:15-4:15 p.m. and anyone can join anytime during the year. The club held its first meeting on Sept. 4.

“We do trivia and discussions about all the books and characters and we also talk about different fandoms that we’re interested in like ‘Dr. Who’ and ‘Sherlock’,” club president Sami Orlando said.

The club is having a cosplay contest soon, which is a competition between people who dress up as characters from a book, movie, or video game. It is available for anyone in Broward County. They are also having a movie screening of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” on Jan. 9.

“I’m really looking forward to the cosplay contest because I’m excited to see what everyone brings and what characters people will be,” Orlando said.


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UNICEF Club has big fundraising year


The United Nations’ Children Fund (UNICEF) club has raised about $7,000 after a year of fundraising for the organization. Compared to last year, when the club raised $4,000, club sponsor Rosalia Sachs said she is floored with the results.

“I’m extremely proud of all the students and all the members,” Ms. Sachs said. “The $7,000 is by selling everything for $1 per unit. For me, I think it’s incredible. It’s an amazing chance and increase from last year.”

unicef2013Currently, the club has over $6,500 in its account and the officers are still waiting for club members to turn in money before sending the money to UNICEF.

“Seniors have a service project that they need to do for them to be able to receive the cord, and it’s to go out to the community and talk to businesses in Weston and they request donations and the donations go straight to UNICEF,” Ms. Sachs said. “We’re still waiting for seniors’ fundraising to come in, so we will have $7,000 and a little bit more.”

Each chapter of the UNICEF organization collects money for a specific cause organized by regions of the United States. This section of the country collects for the purchase and installation of water pumps in third world countries, Ms. Sachs said.

“This section of the United States goes for water. They will buy pumps, and each pump is $500,” Ms. Sachs said. “One pump of water will feed a village, like a street, ‘12 little huts.’ The installation and the pump is $500. That’s where most of the money from this area of the United States goes for. It also goes for food, mosquito nets, vaccinations, etc.”

Club vice president Hannah Levinson said she was also impressed with the amount of money UNICEF has raised.

“It’s such a great accomplishment that we could almost double the amount of money we made last year, and this is such a new club and that we can raise so much money,” said Levinson, a sophomore.

Through the use of bake sales that occur every Thursday under the catwalk and snack/pretzel fundraisers, the group was able to collect money for the cause. Ms. Sachs said the club’s size also greatly contributed to the charity.

“We have over 250 members and every fundraiser at least 185-190 of them work for the cause,” she said. “It’s a big effort.”

Donations director Rona Wang said both local businesses and club members were offered an incentive if they donated money to the club.

“We’ve done a couple of fundraisers and we told juniors and especially seniors, because they need to get the cord, that if they get businesses to donate or if they personally donate X amount of money, they will get X amount of service hours,” said Wang, a sophomore. “If their parents were doing a business or if they asked a business, if they donated $250, they would get advertising space on the back of next year’s shirt.”

Although Ms. Sachs said she is elated UNICEF has raised so much money, she is already starting to think about next year’s goal.

“Now the only problem that we have is we don’t know what to do next year because if we close the year with $7,000, then how are we going to get $8,000 next year? We would love to hear opinions from the community to see what you want us to do in order for us to be successful again,” Ms. Sachs said. “Everything goes to them. We keep $100. Every year we start from scratch. That’s why it’s so stressful, because we need to raise everything again.”

Ms. Sachs said the main reason she sponsors the UNICEF club is because of the difference it can provide in people’s lives. She hopes members of the current club will continue to work with the organization in the future.

“I started sponsoring it last year and I was looking for a club that made a difference in the world,” Ms. Sachs said. “I’m from Puerto Rico. I’m from another country, and I wanted something that would make a mark and would teach the kids how to run a club and go to college and open a chapter there with an organization that is legitimate and will help them at the same time.”

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Marine Science Club to host final beach cleanup of the year


The Marine Science Club will be taking part in its third and last beach clean up of the school year on April 12 at Hollywood Beach. Club members and nonmembers are invited. Field trip forms can be picked up in Room 210 after spring break. Nonmembers are required to pay $5 to attend.

Club president Gabriela Carrillo said members get first priority and nonmembers who sign up on a first-come, first-served basis will fill the rest of the spots.

“The bus has room for 40 people but we prefer to take around 25-30 so it’s more organized and efficient,” Carrillo said.

Carrillo said she is very excited to do another beach clean up with the club because they always have a lot of fun.

“Not only do we have a good time cleaning the beach, but we are also helping out by keeping the environment clean for everyone including marine life,” she said.

Vice president Christopher Chin, a senior, said cleaning the beach potentially saves marine animals’ lives.

“We find a variety of things on the beach like cigarettes, food wrappers and plastic items and by cleaning them up we are preventing the animals from swallowing them,” Chin said.

Chin said that cleaning up the litter on the beach not only benefits the marine animals but the people as well.

“Cleaning up the beach creates a safer and more enjoyable environment for people as well,” he said.

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Auto Club continues to host events


Co-presidents of Auto Club Michael Reymond and Dylan Luxenburg, hosted the club’s second car meet on March 12. About 40-50 cars participated in the car meet with an entrance fee of $3 per car. Some of the money raised will be donated to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and the rest will go toward the repairs of a project car that was donated to the club.

“The car meet went great. There were lots of nice cars and the turnout was good,” said Luxenburg, referring to the 60 people who attended.

useA 1995 Jeep was a donation from a close friend of Reymond’s and will be upgraded and used as a teaching tool for club members learning how to fix cars. Reymond and Luxenburg plan on teaching about parts, how the engine works and how to paint and upgrade a car. They hope for the car to be a mascott for the club.

“Some people might be a little more experienced than others and we can help others out and also it is something cool to do in general,” Reymond said.

Luxenberg said the next event will be a car wash in early April and the next meeting will be after spring break.

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HOSA, SGA teamed up for Fitness Friday


A hula-hoop whirled around sophomore Sarah Rothbard on Friday, Feb. 21 during lunch. She had a minute to win it, competing against her peers to see who could do the most rotations in a minute. Rothbard was participating in a Fitness Friday event.
“It was so great to get a chance to participate in Fitness Friday,” she said. “It was such a worthwhile activity promoting health and fitness. Hula-hooping is something I enjoy doing as well as maintaining a healthy lifestyle.”

For the month of February, Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) collaborated with Student Government Association (SGA) to promote fitness and health awareness. HOSA adviser Carol Warnock said there were multiple activities planned every Friday.

“During lunch we did a contest called ‘Minute to Win It,’ so students did jumping jacks, push-ups, jump roping and Zumba,” she said. “Each Friday there was a different activity. We also had a weekly fitness fun facts contest. Every Friday we would send out five questions to all the first period teachers, and the class who answered the most correctly in the shortest amount of time won a healthy snack.” liiike

Freshman Rebecca Schultz, an SGA member who worked on the event, helped promote the dress-up days, which involved wearing workout clothes.

“We collaborated with HOSA and came up with a ‘Minute to Win It’ game,” she said. “We also made a dress up day and we promoted Fitness Friday on Instagram and Twitter.”

SGA first vice president Lexi Sidle, a senior, said she thought the dress up aspect aided in promoting fitness.

“I feel like if students were to wear fitness clothes to school then they are more likely to want to go to the gym afterwards,” Sidle said.

Exercising is necessary for more than just weight loss, and its importance is why Fitness Friday happened in the first place, Ms. Warnock said.

“A lot of people equate exercising to weight loss, but it’s important to exercise and stay fit for overall health, both mentally and physically,” Ms. Warnock said. “It’s also important to start habits when someone is young so that they continue to exercise throughout their life. We also wanted to do it after the holidays because many people indulge themselves and also made New Year’s resolutions so we thought it was a good tie in.”

SGA adviser Danielle Nascimento said she agrees that making people aware about fitness is important, especially with the rising rates of obesity. She said the event was successful, and she hopes it can be even better next year.

“Something we can do next year is to promote it more in advance to hype it up, and also add in more education of how to be healthier,” she said.

DSC00497Ms. Warnock said the non-traditional activities had positive results and so that will be something they add more of next year.

Cecilia Padron, sophomore and HOSA project leader of health involvement, said the events drew in large crowds and she is excited to do the event again.

“I would do it again because it was an entertaining activity that people were excited to participate in,” Padron said. “It was something different. A lot of other clubs don’t have activities like that.”

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Marine science club hosts movie night


The Marine Science club hosted a free showing of the movie “Blackfish” on Feb. 21 in room 210 for all club members. Ice cream was served to all attendees.

President Gabriela Carrillo, a senior, said the club officers decided to show the movie as a reward to members for their hard work in the club.

“Our members contribute so much to the club by coming to meetings, beach cleanups and selling candy boxes, so we feel they deserved to watch a movie,” Carrillo said.

Carrillo said the officers wanted to choose a movie that would be both entertaining and educational about marine science, and they ended up picking “Blackfish.” Vice president David Price said “Blackfish” is a documentary about marine life.

“We wanted our members to be aware of the abuse that marine animals receive in captivity, especially at aquatic parks and Sea World,” said Price, a senior.

Price said they hope to be able to host more movie showings for their members.

“The event was successful and we may do a couple more movie showings, depending on if we can get in more movie nights around our other events,” he said.

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ASL hosts annual performance


The American Sign Language (ASL) club held its seventh annual show in the auditorium on Feb. 6-7. This year’s theme was “Disney Through the Decades.” The club made $3,800 and it was donated to the Deaf Family Literacy Academy.

like2 “We’ve been preparing for the show since October and we’ve been practicing twice a week for a few hours ever since,” junior Erica Strum said. “We’ve all put a lot of hard work and dedication into this.”

Although Strum does not take the sign language class, she said she might take it next year because the experience with the club peaked her interest.

“I decided to be a part of the show because there is a twin song and I’m a twin,” Strum said. “My sister wanted me to do it with her.”

Senior Jack Montgomery is in ASL 2 and said although he doesn’t like performing he enjoyed being in the show.

“I messed up once or twice but overall my performance was pretty good,” Montgomery said.

Junior Tomas Mosca attended the show on opening night and said it was a ‘Disneytastic’ experience.

“On a scale of one to 10, the show was a solid eight,” Mosca said. “My favorite act was ‘Hercules’ because the performance was hilarious.”

Senior Josef Isaza said he decided to go to the show because he knows some sign language since he has a deaf cousin.

“I went with a few friends and my cousin and we all enjoyed the show,” Isaza said. “It was a fun time.”

Junior Jordan Taylor said this was her first year taking part in the show even though she has been in ASL classes since freshman year.


“I kind of know what’s going to happen once I’m on stage,” Taylor said. “It’s exciting though, you feel so much adrenaline.”

“I am very proud of my students,” she said. “I think they did a phenomenal job.”

ASL 5 started preparing for the show in August and the rest of the classes started the clinics and preparations in October. ASL teacher Stefanie Love said the show went well.

The club is now preparing for upcoming events in March like field day and “Silent Day,” when ASL students go through their school day without speaking.

“I feel bittersweet now that the show is over,” Ms. Love said. “I have a little bit of time to relax, but we’re moving on to our next events soon.”



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