Fairbanks High School … Panther Pause

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Fairbanks choirs prepare for concert
BY LYDIA CARTER
The Fairbanks Music Department has been working hard preparing for the Christmas season.  The 58 members of the Youth Choir and the 12 members of the High School Choir caroled at Brookdale Senior Living and the Gables for the third year in a row on Dec. 7.  The students performed their concert program and took requests from the residents.  The students enjoyed the trip and were eager to carol from room to room.
Choir director Theresa Cooper believes it is important for her students to share their talents with the community, saying “Not only does it help them become well rounded citizens of our society, but spreading a little Christmas cheer to those that might not get to see family or just to brighten their day in some small way is a very humbling experience,” she said. The Youth Choir also performed at the Alpha Delta Kappa luncheon at Der Dutchman, the Fairbanks Elementary School Holiday Concert, and Jolly Jingle.
The Music Department will hold their annual Holiday Concert on Monday at 7 p.m. in the high school gym. Performing groups will include the Youth Choir, the Sixth Grade Band, the Junior High Concert Band, the High School Choir, and the High School Concert Band. The concert will include traditional carols, including songs in Latin and German, as well as non-traditional holiday tunes, and other pieces.
Starting at 6 p.m. Monday, an art show displaying pieces from a variety of Fairbanks students will be displayed on the stage. The eighth grade class is also holding a spaghetti dinner and silent auction in the high school cafeteria. The silent auction will begin at 4 p.m., while the spaghetti dinner will run from 4:30 to 6:45 p.m.

Kutz named “Senior of the Month”
December’s “Senior of the Month” is Hannah Kutz.  Hannah is the daughter of Becki Kutz of Rosedale.  Throughout high school, she has participated in Family Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA), National Honor Society, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and Drama Club. As a member of FFA, she has served as assistant secretary, and is currently serving as secretary. She is also a nine-year member of 4-H, where she is a member of Wings-n-Things 4-H Club, the Union County Junior Fair Board, and is a camp counselor. She is also an active member of the Agape of Marysville Youth Group. She is employed at Der Dutchman, and also babysits throughout the week. After graduation, she plans to attend Mount Vernon Nazarene University and pursue a degree in nursing. When asked what advice she has for the underclassmen, she replied: “Never give up because in the end, it will all be worth it.”

Casting begins for High School Musical
BY KATE WHITE
With the fall play wrapped up and finished, the Fairbanks Drama Club shifts their attention to their spring performance of High School Musical. High School Musical was chosen out of five other candidate musicals because it was the best fit for the student body. The three directors include Mrs. Theresa Cooper, Mrs. Johnnie Holbrook, and Mrs. Mollie Auchmuty. Mr. Ben Keller is in charge of the orchestra.
Auditions wrapped up in December, and included dancing, singing, acting, and callbacks. Roles will be announced on Tuesday.
Rehearsals will begin in mid-January, with performances scheduled for the weekend of April 21, 2017. As soon as roles are announced and rehearsals begin, all hands will be on deck to bring the well-known Disney story to life. Directors estimate there are going to be more than 60 cast members needed on stage, and several crew members to help with sets, makeup, and scene changes.
Drama Club members are anxious to find out who will be playing what roles and how the musical will turn out. Fairbanks High School is looking forward to the spring musical, knowing that last year’s production of Annie was the start of something new. Fairbanks Drama Club is also hoping that people will get their head in the game in order to pull of the best show possible.

Seniors prepare for life after high school with college and jobs
BY DOROTHY REES
It’s true that being a senior is the pinnacle of the high school experience.  The best seats at games, first pick of classes, and of course being able to uphold your superior standing over all the under classman whenever the situation allows.  It’s also a year of bittersweet memories, deadlines and life decisions.  “What’s next?” and “Where are you going to college?” inevitably come up in almost every conversation you have.
For students like myself that are planning to continue their education at a college or university it is a year of living by deadlines, a race to pick your future path, and possibly your first big “real life” decision.  Most colleges have application deadlines in January and February. Those deadlines are even earlier if you want to take advantage of free application fees or special scholarship opportunities.  Each school’s application process is different, but the general requirements are: a completed application form, ACT/SAT test scores, your high school transcripts, an essay or personal statement, and letters or recommendation.
Once accepted, you then have another list of deadlines and requirements to fulfill: a campus visit; completing and submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA); scholarship applications, interviews or competitions; and let’s not forget the all important “which one do I pick” decision.
May 1 is the deadline to inform colleges of your final decision. However be warned: “Colleges and universities have a finite amount (of FASFA funds and scholarships) to distribute” says Fairbanks High School Counselor, Lisa Studenmund. Therefore, the earlier you submit your required information the better chance you have to receive aid.  Mrs. Studenmund does a great job of keeping seniors and their parents informed of these requirements, deadlines and available planning resources through weekly announcements, emails, newsletters, workshops and classroom discussions.  She also has office hours available for those wanting to discuss their options with her in person.
For seniors making the brave decision to enter the military or going directly into the work force after high school, they have important deadlines as well. “They will want to contact recruiters or prospective employers to begin the process so they are ready for the next steps after high school,” says Studenmund.  They will also need to work on their resume, fill out and submit applications as well as boost their interview skills.  Mrs. Studenmund adds: “Just as with those going to college, the earlier (you apply) the more opportunities open to you in seeking out employment after high school.”
In addition, while filling out all the paperwork, racing to meet all the deadlines and making one of the most important decisions of your life, you still have homework, tests, practices, games and club meetings to get done – no pressure!

NHS December projects include Lovingcare Hospice
BY CARLEE ROWLAND
With the winter weather fast approaching, National Honor Society (NHS) members are hard at work preparing for the season of giving. In the past month, officers and members successfully baked and donated an astonishing fifty-four dozen cookies to Lovingcare Hospice home.
In addition, NHS was successful at the Union County Care Train auction, and members are eager to finally shop for Christmas gifts for families in need through our Adopt-a-Family program.
President Katie Pastirzyk was able to organize a meeting with Melanie Ziegler through Memorial Hospital regarding some fundraising opportunities. When asked on the status of the plans, Katie said: “The meeting with Melanie Ziegler was very helpful and opened up many options for our organization. We have not finalized anything yet, but are excited to announce our fundraising plans in early January. We are keeping our efforts local and are excited to support the Union County community!”

Parents get night out thanks to student council
BY SHANNON CONROY
On Nov. 18th, Fairbanks’ Student Council hosted a Parents Night Out. The event was hosted to allow parents and teachers to go Christmas shopping, or have a night to themselves.
Their kids had a fantastic time, away from their parents for a few hours playing games and enjoying time with student council members. Around 25 kids attended to play basketball, duck-duck-goose, tag, soccer, color, watch a movie, and hula-hoop.
The kids had a lot of fun, and their parents were able to have a quiet night of shopping or just hanging out. Parent’s Night Out was supervised by 10 student council members who volunteered hang out with and play with the kids. The student council members really enjoyed the opportunity to connect with the young children in the community, and hope to do this activity again in the future.

FCCLA hosts Father-Daughter dance
Fairbanks FCCLA hosted their annual Father-Daughter Dance on Nov. 12. Over 300 elementary students and their fathers came to have fun. There were many fun-filled activities, including a professional photographer, ice cream, and some friendly father-daughter dance competitions.
FCCLA members arrived a few hours before the dance to decorate and set up all the activities. They put a lot of hard work into making this dance possible each year. FCCLA realizes the importance for dads and daughters to strengthen the special bond they have and will continue to put on this dance to create a special event just for fathers and daughters.

FFA wraps up 2016 projects
BY BECCA SCHOLL
The Fairbanks FFA hosted their Christmas party on Dec. 15, which included caroling at four nursing homes in Marysville. Savannah Walls won first place in this year’s County Creed contest, and has now qualified for sub-districts.
The job interview team placed fifth in the state, while the parliamentary procedure team placed third in sub-districts, and 2nd at districts. They will be moving on to finals on Saturday.
The fruit sale was wrapped up Dec. 12th. On Dec. 13, our members unloaded, sorted, and then delivered the fruit to their customers. The group also recently wrapped up their Thanksgiving adopt-a-family project. They were pleased with so many items donated from the teens at Fairbanks.

Freshmen get hands on with Poe
BY KORYN BOSWORTH
Freshman English teacher Jeff Powell has been assigning the Edgar Allan Poe project for eight years, where groups of students pick one of Poe’s works for their project. These include Berenice, The Fall of the House of Usher, The Pit and the Pendulum, and Some Words with a Mummy, among other works.
Each group writes an original script, and then films a movie version of their story. They also create a diorama of a key scene, define and use 20 vocabulary words from the story, as well as give a presentation in which they show their knowledge of the story by teaching it to the class.
The students typically have three to four weeks to finish the project. During this time, they create progress reports, and have to work together to complete the project. It is also good practice for future presentations.
The majority of students who were asked about the project said they enjoyed it, especially if their group worked together well. There are so many parts of the project that all students are able to use the unique skills and abilities.

Youth 2 Youth hosts “Dive In” smoothie night at YMCA
BY ERIN WARD
On Dec. 2, the healthy lifestyle group Youth 2 Youth held a Dive In Smoothie event at the Marysville YMCA. The event was held from 11 p.m. to 1 a.m., and it was meant to bring like-minded students from across Union County to a place where they could have fun and be drug free for a couple hours.
Around 20 students from Fairbanks attended the event. Jordan Curry, Trevor Chippas, and Audrey Scheiderer each held leadership roles during the night. Their primary jobs were to monitor the other students and work the smoothie and hot dog stands.
While they were there, students had the opportunity to watch movies, play volleyball and basketball, drink smoothies, eat snacks, and swim. Anybody interested in joining Youth 2 Youth can do so by attending the meetings, held every other Tuesday starting Jan. 17, at the Marysville YMCA.



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