Wednesday, January 25, 2012

EchOES Forever

Echoes: A 3rd Anniversary By Janine K.

There was an intense humming of a drum roll as the entire Upper School gathered in the chapel to witness the third annual Echoes writing contest winners accept their awards and read excerpts aloud.  Echoes, the “brain-child” of Estelle B., Class of 2011, was invented with the purpose of encouraging students to pursue passions in reading and writing.  The constructive criticism of the qualified judges is another perk if the public recognition and class extra credit isn’t enough motivation.  The contest focused on three main groups: poetry, nonfiction and fiction. This year, Echoes added the “Fresh Voice” award, given to highlight and celebrate freshman contestants.

It’s not an easy process.  The hurdle that has stumped many applicants is the fact that they must read aloud a part of their piece.  One winner whom I spoke to wrote about how the difficulty of presenting the work made the experience somewhat undesirable. It’s nerve wracking to have to share your personal writing with the entire Upper School student body.  However, I think the winners would agree that the experience was well worth it.

This year, there were over a hundred pieces submitted. For those of you who have not entered the contest in the past, it is highly recommended by students and faculty alike.  If that is not enough motivation, there are also gift cards involved! We’re glad to see EchOES has established itself as an annual celebrated literary event at OES.

Remembering Jeannie Rawley

Remembering Jeannie Rawley By Grace C.

In one word, Jeannie Rawley could be described as “nurturing” says Molly K, “because if there was ever a problem she would always want to make it go away rather than just tell you what was wrong.” 

OES lost a very special teacher over winter break, and students and faculty alike are struggling to make sense of her loss.

Walking into the chapel during activity period, my main purpose was to take a quick picture of the remembrance table for Ms. Rawley and be out. During my trip, however, I learned something new about the third grade teacher that clicked with exactly what Molly meant when she described as “nurturing”. 

As I quietly took several pictures of the table, I noticed the color scheme of it was mainly purple.  I asked Reverend Jennifer Cleveland, who was speaking with a couple of Lower School teachers, if Ms. Rawley’s favorite color was purple.  She replied that she had a cabin by Hood River where she grew lots of lavender.  She made all of the lavender products (dried bunches, bath salts, etc.) sold annually at the art sale from the lavender she grew.  “She was very into the healing properties of lavender,” said Rev. Cleveland. 

After speaking to past students of hers, it was evident that her motherly personality helped her students grow; Nolan P. ‘12 said, “She didn’t let us get away with stupid stuff.”  She never seemed to handle too much. Her plethora of class pets was a remaining memory for all of students.  Her lizards, tree frogs and centipedes were just the beginning of the many pets she took care of. 

Her nurturing soul will never be forgotten in the OES community and she will be greatly missed.

By Antonia E. class of 2012

By Will S. class of 2013

By Sophia T. class of 2013

Oesians Place at the Northwest Art Exhibit By Sophia T.

Out of forty-five students from Oregon, Washington, and Idaho, three students from OES had their work chosen for the annual round of High School Art Northwest exhibit at George Fox University. They are Antonia E., William S., and Sophia T. 

I was astonished by Antonia’s piece, which was expertly drawn with watercolor pencil and ink pen. This piece depicts a half-human and half-robot person being manufactured or controlled by a highly intellectual machine. I could imagine the story of a human gradually losing their identity due to over-reliance on too much technology. This eventually leads to a human-versus-machine battle. Although the humans won, all the main characters were martyred. Indeed, Antonia, known around here as Tony, was inspired by sci-fi movies, but instead of holding a strong statement in mind before drawing, she just worked and composed throughout the process. Tony said she had no idea how the piece would turn out in the end; it would either be very good or very bad. But, we all know this fantastic drawing won her the honor. Tony also revealed a small secret. The small ink dots on the left shoulders were accidentally spilled ink, but to a viewer, these dots seemed to be perfectly in the right space...

Who I Am By Sophie L.

From December 1st to 3rd, Haley J., Kudzai N., Gavin W., Hiawatha D., and I attended Student Diversity Leadership Conference in downtown Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This conference provided us with the opportunity to discuss diversity issues in the United States and also provided us with a place where we could study and come to fully understand each other and how issues concerning race, class, and gender affect us all. This conference was one of the most valuable memories I’ve had and it widened my perspective and understanding not only of the United States, but also of the world...

My Piece on Second Semester Seniors by Andrew W.

A few days ago, I discovered that there is less than a week until end of the first semester. This realization prompted an epic endeavor to quantify the mysterious psychological change that occurs in a senior in the second half of the year. This piece would be my magnum opus, I decided, a treasure for all who would ever read the Blophish.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – A Detailed, Honest Review by Chad D.

To the best of my knowledge, there was no game of 2011 that was hyped more than The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.  A flashy reveal trailer accompanied by unforgettable, epic chanting seized the attention of millions, and words and phrases such as “Dovahkiin” and “Fus-Roh-Dah” became cemented in the vocabulary of gaming forums throughout the Web.  Now that the game has been out for a little more than a month, and I have had the opportunity to play through it, would I call it the best WRPG (Western Roleplaying Game) of all time?  The short answer is no, but it’s a game you won’t want to miss...

The Dorm Retreat by Elanie F.

We Want Snow!

The one night annual retreat of OES Dorm took place at Menucha, a retreat center in the Columbia Gorge during MLK weekend.  Snow played a big part of the event this year; it brought both excitement and depression to the community.

“We want snow at OES!”

The OES Dorms have been a warm residence for both international and domestic students. Also, retreats at Menucha in previous years left the seniors with fun memories, but the winter doldrums and the expectations of snow drew people’s interests away from the excitement of going out as a group. On the day of departure, many students got up early at eight to see the amazing landscape of snow. The depression created by the rumor of cancelation of the retreat only existed for a short time. When the dorm parents went around and knocked on each door to remind students of the departure time, the mood in the building was exuberant. When the bus finally arrived, the snow had already stopped. Students, especially international students from Asia, who rarely have the chance to see snow in their motherland, were depressed about not being able to enjoy the snow. In addition, everyone was hoping for no school! Here is a haiku written during the retreat that reflects a student’s innocent wish:

Snow covering, Portland
Should be white, too, with no school.
Students prefer breaks!

Flashback: OES VS. Catlin By Kristin Q.

When I walked in right after halftime during the girls’ game, I could feel a high tension that generated an edgy excitement throughout the gym. Catlin Gabel, our long-time athletics rival, took advantage of their familiarity with their own gym while OES impressed fans by quickly adjusting to the surroundings. The action on the court was quite fascinating as well, and there was such sincere sportsmanship coming from our team...

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Dear Harvard… By Kristin Q.

Dear my dream school Harvard,

I would like to start off with a few greetings in a couple of languages that I learned through Google Translate: Bonjour! Hola! Konnichiwa.

You are probably wondering why I am writing this letter to you. This letter will guarantee my spot in the class of 2016. I also want to show off my awesome writing skills. Why am I so sure that I will get into Harvard? Here is some concrete evidence:

1.     Santa Claus told me that I'm going to Harvard because I was good this year.
2.     This morning, while I was finding paper to write this letter on, I gave myself a paper cut. The blood that came out was crimson-colored. The first thing that came into my mind was: Harvard Crimsons! Go team...

A Different Type of Green By Owen M.

In the coming springs of 2012 and 2013, before Martin Winter steps onto the lacrosse field, he’ll perform his pregame rituals, prepare mentally for his game, and slip on his green jersey. But there will be two differences between these seasons. In 2013, Martin Winter probably won’t be playing in the rain, and his green jersey won’t represent OES, it will represent the Division 1 Jacksonville University Lacrosse program.

While all of his classmates were stressing out about college applications this winter, Martin had a chance to relax because he had already been recruited to JU in the fall. He looked at other colleges such as Fairfield, Michigan, Air Force, and Drexel, but he chose Jacksonville because he had a good relationship with the coach, and his lacrosse prowess allowed him to receive an athletic scholarship there. He says, “Being recruited made my college applications process easier and I’m really excited to be playing college lacrosse.” And he should be very excited, because instead of just watching college lacrosse games on television, he’ll be playing against the big-name teams like Towson and Duke.

Martin says that he’ll remember OES lacrosse—especially the strong bonds that were formed with his teammates and the growth that he received from the program. He will not forget these experiences. He still has one season left. And he plans to make it count.

Kitty College Skeptic

Dear Harvard by Janine K.

Dear Harvard,

I have heard that you guys are a good college. Your website is so easy to read and it is so organized. Not only this, but the school colors happen to be very flattering to me personally.  Not to mention the fact that the mascot is my spirit animal. I’m pretty sure some famous guy graduated from this college. He went on to graduate school, I’m pretty sure.

I know I might not be the run of the mill Harvard Applicant. I know my GPA may be low, but that’s because I did daily commutes to Guatemala to take care of impoverished children, which did not leave much time for studying. I have a lot of work experience because I have watched every episode of The Office.  I know how to work hard because one time I organized a protest against the SAT.

My philosophy is to be honest and to never tell a lie. To be honest, you guys are my second choice. Yale is pretty cool too. Did you hear that they are an Ivy League?

With Love,


Fun College Facts By Elanie F.

Princeton is the only Ivy League school listed from the top twenty colleges that have the best classroom experience. It stood at 9th place for 2010.

There are no Ivy League schools listed for the top twenty colleges that have the best instructors. Davidson College stands as number one.

The University of Florida is ninth in the college rankings for students who study the least outside of class time, and supposedly they have the worst teachers (20th place for Professors with low marks). But the college has the best career services.

 Students at California Institute of Technology spend the most time study outside of class.

Stanford is ranked top for running like butter and none of the Ivy League colleges ranked in the top 10 in that category.

There are no Ivy League schools ranked for “class discussion encouraged.” Class discussions ranked low at a lot of East coast schools. Be ready to get lectured if you are going to the East Coast...

Dear Harvard…By Grace C.

Dear Hahrvard,

I really loves your school. I taked a tour around the campus along with a group of anxious tourists from Asia and I even got sum pix infront of some metal man sitting on a chair. He looks like a leprechaun that came off the Mayflour except I think his hat fit just right because he wasn’t wearing a belt on it.  In fact, he wasn’t even wearing a hat, and hislovely bronze locks were drifting in the wind. But not, because he’s not real and he’s metal. Everyone was petting his foot, so I guess that’s a common etticket on your campus...