Stay hungry Highland

The New Vending Machine

Two weeks ago, the epitome of the American high school experience graced the hallway leading to the field house. What was rolled through our big glass doors was a carb packed, caffeine bursting, money gobbler that blew the minds of the poor students who got the first few glimpses. Since the vending machines arrival, all kinds of people have had thoroughly mixed reviews, and Highland Park as a whole has been somewhat shaken.

What The Students Think

When asked if they knew about the new vending machine, one student responded

“H*** yeah.”

This same student  responded the same way 4 more times when prompted with questions like “Do you like the new vending machine?” “Do you like what’s in the new vending machine?” and “Do you want the vending machine to be on all the time?”

Many people responded in similar ways. They loved the new addition, but wished it would be more accessible during school hours. They think students should be able to snack during the day, especially with the lunch hours being so early. Many wished that there should be more “unhealthy options,” i.e. regular chips, pop, and candy, while a few said it should stay where it is in terms of food. The school’s favorite snacks include the hot cheetos, and the Pop Tarts.

Someone requested I mention the fact that we need to fill it more frequently, and another requested one on each floor. Overall, students are ecstatic about a new, tasty way to spend pocket money on school grounds.

What Teachers Think

The general consensus from the teachers is that they are okay with the vending machine, as long as the food stays relatively healthy, and it is not turned on during school hours. On the first day of our marvelous new machinery, many students were late to class due to the wonder and overuse. They were happy, however, that students who are here extremely early get the chance to eat. They also thought that it was good that we get funding for the school. If the current rules are kept in place, then some support it continuing in the future.

What Dr. Tucker Thinks

Dr. Tucker made the decision to install the lovely food dispenser, so clearly he is in support of it.  After getting a call from a vending company that often supplies schools, he decided that Highland Park should accept a vending machine into the building. This is all, of course, according to district rules about the type of food being sold. All revenues go towards the school. This is a fantastic system because we get the food and the money. Keep buying the snacks and we as a school will keep benefiting from it.

Stay Hungry Highland

iPads at Highland: What You Need to Know

Woohoo, we’re getting iPads soon! There are many questions up in the air, and some that are still unanswered. Here are a few questions that might clear things up.
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Great Decisions Conference For HPSH Students Was a Field Trip to the Real World

Nine students from Kari Rise’s IB Geography class were able to attend the 7th annual Great Decisions Conference last Friday. Each year, this conference tackles issues that have global relevance. The topic for 2014 was energy independence. Speakers ranging from experts from the University of Minnesota and the Star Tribune to foreign affairs specialists of Germany, Mexico, and Canada brought their voices to the panel.

Discussion about energy independence began with an overview from foreign relations expert Tom Hanson about foreign policy and America’s history with oil. His speech was particularly startling because it introduced the politics surrounding energy, an issue that many of us, especially as high school students, do not even think about.

Part of learning about energy independence was understanding the complexity to any subject. While all the speakers were highly educated, they had different, and sometimes opposite, opinions. As many spoke of the economic and political benefits from obtaining oil in the US, others spoke to their concerns about the environment or the lack of sustainability in continuing current patterns. For some, the United States has made incredible progress in a positive direction because of their increased energy independence. Oil ties countries together politically. 80% of China’s oil comes from the Middle East, causing lifestyle in China to hinge on the political stability of the Middle East. The US does not have this issue, as only one third of our oil is imported. On the other side, localization brings into play the environmental impact. It is important to remember that the reserves of oil will not be able to sustain increasing energy needs forever. Respected intellectuals and members of the public presented on each side of the debacle.

To Highland Park students, one of the most intriguing facets of the conference was Hector Castro’s presentation on Mexico. Hector Castro described a progressive situation in Mexico. Since the election of President Enrique Peña Nieto, the Mexican government has instituted sweeping structural reforms, including 21 new laws. Regarding energy, laws were adopted to try to decrease the monopoly of the government petroleum and electricity companies of PEMEX and CFE. The presentation was thought-provoking because of the efficiency of the Mexican government. HPSH students commented on the contrast with the difficulty in passing legislation that the United States government often faces.

This wasn’t the only opportunity to compare and contrast. Energy dependence is a problem that many countries have had to face. As Mario Ingo Soos, Deputy Consul General of Germany in Chicago, explained, for Germany, the solution to becoming independent was turning to renewable energy sources. About 27% of their energy is from renewable sources. When faced with the same dilemma, the United States has resorted to a dramatic increase in local hydraulic fracking. Both ways have been successful in reducing international dependence, but each have a very different set of outcomes and consequences. It was interesting to see the different methods of solving a problem.

Every day in school, we learn the skills that we need in our future, but our education in the classroom doesn’t always enter into current events or share in the concerns of the “adult world.” It felt refreshing to be aware of something that matters and to take part in contributing ideas. Our choices with energy are going to shape future generations and being informed is critical.


(Above) Several geography students who attended the conference pictured with Kari Rise, HPSH IB Geography instructor, Mario Ingo Soos, Deputy Consul General of Germany in Chicago and Carol Engebretson Bryne, President of Minnesota International Center

(Below) Students with Star Tribune energy reporter David Shaffer, and Dan King, US Department of Energy.



Getting to Know Our SCSU Student Teachers

By: Maeve Gimpl

Ms. Allie Meyer, studying social studies education

As many of you already know, Highland has welcomed two student teachers from Saint Cloud State University. They stand alongside our current teachers here at HP to further engage in their final steps of learning before finally becoming educators themselves. I was able to spend a little time with Mr. Johnson and Ms. Meyer last week to ask them what a normal day for them would look like, as well as how they’re liking it so far.

To start off their regular morning, both student teachers get up bright and early to head to Highland for a long day of work. Ms. Meyer can be found teaching U.S. government with Mr. Zeitchick during the day, while Mr. Johnson heads up to Ms. Rise’s room to help teach geography. Both student teachers were telling me how much they enjoy working with not only their designated teachers but with the students as well!

For Ms. Meyer, this wasn’t her first time student teaching at a school; in fact, she’s on her fourth and final school that she has to teach at before she can finally become a teacher! I asked Ms. Meyer what her first day here at Highland was like. “I LOVED it,” she immediately replied. She proceeded to tell me that her favorite part of teaching so far has been interacting with the students–”and having them make fun of me,” she added with a laugh. When I asked her if she had a least favorite part of teaching, she said she didn’t have one! “I’m right where I’m supposed to be…I’m lovin’ life at HP!”

Mr. Kyle Johnson, studying social studies education with an emphasis on history

Mr. Johnson, just like Ms. Meyer, also said that his favorite part of teaching has been being able to interact with all the people at Highland. “I’ve had a lot of fun meeting the students and getting to know them,” Mr. Johnson admits. “It makes my day to be able to hang out with kids who are fun and have really good things to say!” He also told me that he has enjoyed his time with Ms. Rise both inside and outside of school, adding that they’ve even gone canoeing together on Lake Calhoun. Besides student teaching, Mr. Johnson loves biking, video games, and fantasy football.

It was great being able to get to know Ms. Meyer and Mr. Johnson this past week. One response really stuck out for me. When I asked both of them what their dream job would be, if they knew they could be successful in any career that they pursued, they both responded with confidence, “high school teacher.” This really shows how passionate and excited they are to continue their last bit of student teaching so that they can finally become teachers themselves!

Ms. Meyer conducting some one on one instruction about the Constitutional Convention

Homecoming 2014


2014-2015 HPSH Student Council Executive Board

Over the weekend of September 26th-28th, many different homecoming activities occurred.

The festivities opened with a riveting Pepfest with fantastic performances from the Football team, and the HPDT (Highland Park Dance Team). The fall sports captains recapped their first few games/meets and previewed the rest of their seasons.

The coronation ceremony also was very exciting! Congrats to the following students for being chosen for homecoming court:

  • Freshmen: Josh Aune & Ashley Krois
  • Sophomores: Nathan Hernandez & Teagan Riley
  • Juniors: Max Muter & Alex Frye
  • Seniors: Kwashon Collins & Claire Oberman

The outside of school activities kicked off with a “Blast From The Past” dance on Friday night in the fieldhouse gym. The DJ provided the music and the students provided the fun. It was a great chance for students to socialize and have fun! It was an absolute success and everyone in attendance had a blast. If you missed out on this event, don’t frown because there will be more dances this year.

Everything picked up right where it left off on Saturday morning with a tailgating event in the front of the school, by the School House. The following clubs had booths: Model UN, Youth In Government, FFA, Choir, GSA, The Plaid Line (of course!) and more! There were lots of items for sale to help support HP activities.

Afterwards, the Highland Scots squared off in a battle against the St. Croix Central Panthers’ football team. The Scots ended up being outmatched, but the great crowd stuck around to cheer on their classmates, and the team rewarded their fans with a late touchdown to get on the board. A 42-6 loss was disappointing, but at least everybody enjoyed cheering on the Mighty Scots!

Happy Homecoming, HP!

Girls Tennis Season Recap

By: Emma Dombrow

Last year’s HPSH Girls Tennis Varsity and JV Teams

The girls tennis team had a great season this year, even though three of the starting varsity players were injured and out for most of the season. Our season started out with captain’s practices during the last week of July and will be finished as of Thursday 10/9.

Our season is almost finished, but we still have two more major events left!  First is the individual sections at the University of Minnesota.  It’s a competition where two singles players and two doubles teams from each school get to skip a day of school and compete.  This year from Highland, Anja Savic (10), Leah Barrett (12), Sabrina Hang (11), and Katie Tennis (11) will be competing for the doubles teams.  Emma Dombrow (11) and Preianna Swenson (12) will be the two singles players that are competing. Besides being a very fun opportunity, after the matches the players and Coaches go out to BDubs to eat wings and have some team bonding time.


2014 Captains Leah Barrett and Sabrina Hang

Besides the individual sections, we also have our final end of the year banquet at Olive Garden in honor of a great season.  At the banquet, varsity letters will be given out to the players, and recognition certificates will be given out to the JV players as well.  We will also give our final thanks to our two great captains this year, Sabrina Hang (11) and Leah Barrett (12).  They had great team spirit and without their leadership the team would not have bonded together as well.


Varsity and JV girls Katherine Jossi, Sydney Linssen, Elisa Machlitt, and Emma Dombrow

Next Year’s Season:  If you, or anyone you know, is interested in joining the tennis team, I would highly recommend it!  There is always room for anyone who wants to play, and it is a very fun sport with lots of friendly teammates.  If you would like to join or have any questions, contact Mr. Shaw or any of the varsity players.  Hopefully we will get some new girls next year!

Varsity Players:

(Coach Shaw)


  1. Ana Savic (10)
  2. Leah Barrett (12)
  3. Sydney Linssen (10)/Emma Dombrow (11)
  4. Preianna Swenson (12)


  1. Katherine Jossi/Sabrina Hang and Katie Tennis(11)
  2. Georgia Angelo and Colleen Welter (10)
  3. Lily Brown and Marah Prpich (11)

JV Players

(Coach Andy)

  • Lily Weisman (12)
  • Elisa Machlitt (11)
  • Sami Linssen (8)
  • Neesha Moore (9)
  • Grace (10)
  • Rachel Van Fleet (7)
  • Natalie (12)
  • Nehali Van Der Leeuw (10)
  • Francis Atmore (7)
  • Lauren (8)
  • Shu Ye (9)
  • Sophie (8)
  • Grace (11)

Questions about the team? Contact Head Coach Michael Shaw:

Basic Tips: Leggings

By: Izzy Rojas

“Basic Tips” is a new lifestyle column that focuses around what’s popular with the average high school girl. Written with expert consultation from the girls themselves, “Basic Tips” centers around fashion, events, and everyday high school life. This month’s topic: leggings.

A major debate these days seems to be focused around what type of leggings are the best. Girls are wearing leggings much more regularly than jeans for comfort sake. Leggings are the go-to clothing choice for almost any occasion. You may be asking yourself: there’s more than one type of black legging? Aren’t they all the same? Think again. Below is a comparison chart of the pros, cons, and prices of the five major players in the game. Take a look and decide for yourself!



Pink by Victoria Secret





Highland Wellness Committee Event: Work Experience Showcase

Co-Written By: Izzy Rojas

Today in the community garden, the Highland Park Wellness Committee conducted an event showcasing the work experience program coordinated by Mr. McCann. Several booths were set up as part of the display, including: fresh vegetable stand, produce trivia, work experience program information, and a soccer/physical activity circle. There were also tours of the garden by Ms. Rise. Many classes came down to participate in the event and to support the hard work that the students have done over the last year.

One class in particular that came to the event was Ms. Ketterling’s Horticulture class. The Horticulture class is connected with the agriculture department here at Highland, and is a new class offering this year. “The Horticulture class is all about learning about plants and the environmental factors that effect the proper growth of the plants. We go from learning about soils, to different non-soil media, propagating plants sexually and a-sexually, light requirements, things like that”, said Ms. Ketterling. Horticulture students also do AP-Bio level labs, measuring things like porosity and textures of soils.

It was a great event, ending with tours and fellowship in the garden. Below are some pictures of the morning:










Meet The New Administration: Mr. Sager


Last week, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Mr. Sager, who is a new admin at Highland this year and will be in charge of the Freshman and Sophomore classes.

Mr. Sager, who is looking forward to finally working with high school students and discussing their future with them, decided to be an administrator after he was left wanting more responsibility after a few years of being a social studies teacher. He said that he loved teaching and misses it at times, but is very happy to be at HP. He hopes that people learn that he is very approachable and isn’t there just to discipline students.

Sager, who participated in FFA and a multitude of sports in high school wishes he had iPads during that time. He has high hopes for the implementation of technology at HP and believes that it will help students stay organized, just like it has already helped him, and that it will severely cut back on the amount of paper that needs to be constantly being exchanged between students and staff.

Sager also has very strong beliefs that a great member of an administrative team must be consistent, compassionate and operate with honesty, integrity and dependability. He gathers his inspiration from his family and the Livestrong Foundation motto, “Unity is strength, knowledge is power and attitude is everything.” He also drives himself to live “everyday with integrity, strength and, most importantly, values.”


Meet The New Administration: Dr. Shipp


I sat down for an interview. Dr. Shipp, who has been in the district for 25 years, is a new admin at Highland this year and will be managing the Junior and Senior classes.

Dr. Shipp, is eager to get to know the staff she will be working with and build relationships with students. She decided to be an administrator after discovering her love for working and developing students during her work as a school social worker. She hopes that people learn that she is very shy but hopes to get to know all the students she works with.

Shipp, who played the flute and participated in Student Council in high school is excited about the implementation of iPads this November. She has high hopes for technology at HP and believes that it will help students become true global citizens and put Highland on the same playing field as schools around the world. She also thinks that it will be a “game changer” in individualized instruction.

Dr. Shipp also believes that a great administrator must follow all aspects of the IB learner profile. “Perhaps the greatest aspect is to be a communicator, which means to not only be a good speaker but a superb listener,” said Shipp. She also thinks that broad knowledge and political savvy are important in being able to understand people’s views. She garners inspiration from the following quote from George Washington Carver: “Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom”. She interprets this quote to mean that without education, a person becomes imprisoned within their own mind.

You can contact Dr. Shipp at:, 651-744-4655