Senator Square: Carson High School’s digital media class launches new web page

Phillip Brady

Phillip Brady

The Community of Carson City, and anyone in the world with access to the Internet, now has an opportunity to visit Carson High School. CHS’ new Digital Media class launched its Senators Now web page Feb. 1. The class focuses on using a range of technological tools to create and maintain an up-to-date student friendly CHS web page that includes a news broadcast, video stories, highlights, announcements, student polls, and other interactive features. The over arching goal of Senators Now Digital Media is to empower students in a transformative learning environment. The class is co-taught by CHS teacher Patt Quinn-Davis and CHS Implementation Specialist Cynthia Mills. The idea for the class stemmed from the broadcast classes offered at the middle schools. According to Mills, “I observed Rob Hostler’s CMNewz Class at Carson Middle School and Lisa Stocke-Koop’s Daily News class at Eagle Valley Middle School, and I was inspired to create an extension of the class at CHS.” Mills went on to say, “I went through all necessary channels, and the class was accepted.” Mills then approached Quinn-Davis to assist with the class because of her extensive journalism background and, together with their students, they make a great team. “The Senators Now web page had 2,100 hits in its first 24 hours,” Mills said, and she added, “The web page,, was pushed out to students as the landing page for their Chromebooks.” CHS social studies teacher and Future Business Leaders of America Adviser Angila Golik said, “This is the coolest thing I have seen in years; it is a great way to announce awesome stuff going on at CHS.” According to Quinn-Davis, “Some students will pursue a career in media because of a class like this, but more importantly, students learn to do very ‘adult’ things like interviewing, interpreting, and chasing a story.” Quinn-Davis then added that “Those talents apply in so many ways as these students mature, and I am so proud of our opening team, news anchors Antonio Iglesias and Santino De Los Rios, and our lead editor who, ironically, is our exchange student from Italy, Alfredo Chissotti,” said Quinn-Davis.


Winterfest 2018 was a huge success with one of its main highlights being the talent show hosted by Future Business Leaders of America. With almost 600 students, staff, and parents in attendance at the Bob Boldrick Theater at the Community Center, the event is a major fundraiser to help send FBLA students to state and national competitions. Masters of ceremony for the evening were seniors Landon Truesdale and Jacob Wolz, and the event was judged by community members and CHS teachers. A huge thanks goes out to Jennifer Minifie, Will Houk, Angela Maw and Deputy Daniel Gonzalez for judging the ceremonies. The evening started with the song “This is Me” signed by American Sign Language teacher Mary Anne Weaver, a non-judged event, but one which received a standing ovation. Winners chosen in the non-singing category were first place going to Matt Almaraz for his original guitar piece, second place went to Chola 8 News Comedic Skit performed by Edson Lemus, Melanie Proctor, Jazzy Peralta, and Leslie Torres. Winners chosen in the singing category were first place Ava Covington for singing “Wicked Game” while playing the piano, and second place Jazlyn Duran for singing “Say it First.” The best overall act of the show was given to Cassidy Painter for her beautifully sung rendition of “Halo” by Beyonce, which was a tribute to CHS student Timmy Jones, who passed away in November. The emotional tribute brought the house to its feet and tears to many eyes. Thanks also goes out to the following businesses for donating cash or prizes for the raffle: Adam’s Hub, Arby’s, Wild Horse Theater Productions, NAI Alliance, Chi Skin Care, Kai Fit, Tumbleweeds and Dutch Bros.


Even during Winterfest week, the Social Emotional Learning Committee again invited CHS teachers and staff to Mob the Halls Feb. 8 from 7 to 7:30 a.m. They picked an entrance to the school and welcomed students as they entered the building’s various entrances. Students’ faces went from morning solemnity to sunrise cheerfulness. Many students reported the high-fives and fist-bumps changed their entire day. What a great atmosphere and culture continuing to be established here at CHS.


CHS Speech and Debate competed at the McQueen High School tournament recently, and Ivy Campbell placed 19th in novice Lincoln Douglas speaker points on the topic of abolishing plea bargaining. Ivy Campell also competed at the Zone level of the Lions Club speaking contest and placed second on the topic of how social media affects youth, millennials, and seniors. Andrea Urban placed ninth in novice impromptu speaking with Nathaniel Wetzel placing eighth in novice foreign extemporaneous speaking on human rights and international organizations. Cierra Randall placed fourth in novice original oratory with her piece, Toxic Masculinity. Kevin Avila placed third in novice humorous interpretation and has advanced to senior level competition. Mary Milburn placed second in novice program oral interpretation with her mix of poetry and literature. She advances to senior level competition with her second top three finish in a row. Public Forum partners Cierra Randall and Mary Milburn placed third in novice public forum on the topic of Catalonian Independence with Mary taking third in speaker points. Senior Public forum partners Evan Cherpeski and Sadie Share took third in senior public forum with Share also taking third in speaker points. The team wraps up regular season competition at Damonte this month.


The CHS Honor Band performed Feb. 2 at Churchill High School Auditorium. These 18 band students had a successful audition and were in the ensemble.


On Feb. 2, Firehouse Subs donated $513.91 to the CHS Class of 2018 thanks to the work of CHS Safe Grad volunteers, hard at work to provide seniors with a fun and safe graduation experience this year, and it is the supportive community of Carson City that is going to make it happen. In addition to other fundraising events, Class of 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021 decals are being sold for just about every club and sport at CHS. Students will find these decals for sale at the upcoming basketball games and other sporting events. Safe Grad volunteers are still needed, and meetings are the second Saturday every month at RE/MAX Realty, 716 N. Carson St. on the second floor. CHS Safe Grad Secretary Wendy Yang may be reached at 775-720-6160 and President Kyra Hinton at 775-434-760-0635 or


Heart Health Month is here, and there just might be a Valentine’s Day link ... hmmmm. National Wear Red Day began Feb. 2 to remind people heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the U.S. The good news is that it is also one of the most preventable. Making heart-healthy choices, knowing family health history, the risk factors for heart disease, having regular check-ups, and working with physicians to manage health are all integral aspects of saving lives from this often silent killer. The CHS FFA chapter says it is also time to order roses by Feb. 12 to be picked up at CHS on Feb. 14. Pick a color and order three stems for $12, a half dozen for $20, or a full dozen for $35. Contact Charles Mann of the CHS Ag Department for details:


CHS’ American Sign Language II classes are cordially inviting the Carson City Community to a night of music and sign on Feb. 13 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in the CHS library. Contact CHS teacher MaryAnne Weaver at 775-283-1803 for information.


On Feb. 14, the CHS NJROTC program will hold its Annual Military Inspection and Pass in Review ceremony in the CHS big gym. Cadets have been preparing since the start of the school year and are prepared to show what they can do. The first phase of the day is Personnel Inspection, which will happen in the morning, and the Pass in Review Ceremony is the second phase. This year’s inspecting officer is Captain Wenceslao, Area 13 manager for the NJROTC program, and he will be assisted by Captain Holloran, commanding officer of Naval Air Station in Fallon. CHS NJROTC is also privileged to have Carson City Mayor Bob Crowell, a former captain in the United States Navy, attending the event. All are invited to attend the ceremony, which will run from approximately 5 to 6 p.m.


The NHS Winter Blood Drive happens Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., in the CHS library. Donors are greatly needed, and lives are saved because of generous donors. All must be at least 16 years old, and anyone under 18 must have a signed parent consent form with them when they donate. A picture ID is required as well. Getting donors is the key to a successful blood drive, and for each donor, NHS members earn two points; they are encouraged to do their very best to get at least one donor. It may even be the NHS member himself, a parent, a sibling, a friend, a teacher, a coach, or a neighbor. Email CHS teacher and NHS advisor Brian Branch with questions:


CHS Feb. 5-9 Athletes of the Week are Abby Golik for girls varsity basketball and Derek Barry for boys varsity basketball. These athletes, and all students who participate in school functions through leadership, clubs, and sports, deserve a high level of congratulations.


Javier Reyes Acosta is the CHS Student of the Week. He is a junior and maintains a 3.0 GPA. Javier also works at In-N-Out Burger at the Carson Valley Plaza. As a student, Javier participates in Career and Technical Education classes such as Web Design 3 and IT Essential 2; he will be finishing these pathways this year. His favorite class is U.S. history with Mr. Morgan. In his free time, Javier likes to hang out with friends. After graduation, Javier will continue working and might attend WNC.


This week the senior spotlight shines on Jacob Kordonowy. Jake is a goal-oriented young man who works hard both in and out of the classroom. He is taking several honors and AP courses as well as an advanced engineering class. Jake is highly involved with the community and has done some amazing things for his Eagle Scout project and his senior project graduation requirement. Jake earned his Eagle Scout in 2017 after completing an erosion control project in Ash Canyon. This project was difficult in that he had to work with city officials, private contractors, and many volunteers to accomplish his goal. He was in charge of safety demonstrations, supervision, and explaining the reason behind his project, which was to prevent further erosion into the city’s municipal water supply. Jake has his work cut out for him on his senior project as well. He is working with the city to design and build a bike park behind Western Nevada College. While most seniors will be finished with their projects by the time presentations are done in April, Jake will only have completed the planning component. He will be continuing to see this project through to fruition, which will not happen until late summer. Jake loves the outdoors and has been a scout for many years. He enjoys mountain biking and camping. He plans to attend UNR in the fall where he will major in forest management and ecology. CHS and Carson City are proud of the accomplishments of Jake Kordonowy and know he will succeed at all he chooses to accomplish.

Phil Brady is an English teacher at CHS.


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