The Rocket Flame

Lighting a Path for New NHS Members

Back+Row%3A+Owen+Cooper+%2811%29%2C+Addy+Crouse+%2811%29%2C+Alliah+Fluent+%2811%29%2C+Meredith+Iverson+%2811%29%2C+Kace+Dorty+%2811%29%2C+Colby+Starr+%2811%29%2C+Macen+Wilt+%2811%29%2C+Carlee+Jackson+%2812%29%2C+Tanner+Myers+%2812%29%2C+Aleesha+Cramer+%2811%29%2C+Jaide+Wolfe+%2811%29%2C+and+Hailey+Embree+%2811%29.+Front+Row%3A+Kaitlyn+Ebersole+%2812%29%2C+Cameron+Flemming+%2811%29%2C+Bella+Shupp+%2811%29%2C+Brynn+Taulton+%2811%29%2C+Kyla+Shoemaker+%2811%29%2C+Ashley+Dukehart+%2811%29%2C+Morgan+Shughart+%2811%29%2C+Emily+Horst+%2811%29%2C+Alyssa+Sensinger+%2811%29%2C+Maddie+Akers+%2811%29%2C+and+Kierra+Griffith+%2811%29.+

Back Row: Owen Cooper (11), Addy Crouse (11), Alliah Fluent (11), Meredith Iverson (11), Kace Dorty (11), Colby Starr (11), Macen Wilt (11), Carlee Jackson (12), Tanner Myers (12), Aleesha Cramer (11), Jaide Wolfe (11), and Hailey Embree (11). Front Row: Kaitlyn Ebersole (12), Cameron Flemming (11), Bella Shupp (11), Brynn Taulton (11), Kyla Shoemaker (11), Ashley Dukehart (11), Morgan Shughart (11), Emily Horst (11), Alyssa Sensinger (11), Maddie Akers (11), and Kierra Griffith (11).

Imagine yourself feeling anxious as you wait for your name to be called. Your hands are sweaty and your heart is pumping at a thousand beats per minute. When your name is finally called, multiple hands clap in unison as they recognize and acknowledge your academic achievements and induct you into a society. This society is known as the National Honor Society, which highlights students who do well academically as well as showing the four pillars that define the society.

On January 17, 2020, 24 new members were inducted into this organization. Before a student can get into NHS, they must first get an NHS invitation and this is the first step of the induction process.

“In November of the school year, Mr. Stull and I run the GPAs for juniors and seniors…students need a 3.85 GPA for this year,” said Mrs. Jenna Sheaffer (Faculty). 

This is one part of the criteria that everyone cannot meet, but the advisors have discussed a change that can impact the inductees for next year. 

“Next year, the GPA is going to go up since the weighting  system might change,” said Sheaffer. “We have discussed with Mrs. Troutman of maybe allowing the top 15% of the class to apply for NHS. Because we didn’t change the weighting system this year, we invited 40 students to apply. This doesn’t show how the inducted members are a selected group of students.” 

If a student reaches the GPA requirement, they must also reflect the four pillars that define NHS.  

“Everyone meets scholarship (that’s the 3.85). Character is the harder one to talk about because we want students who are well-rounded and nice people. The other two are service and leadership,” said Sheaffer. 

Once students fill out the application, the induction process is determined by the Faculty Advisory Committee, who help decide who is ultimately inducted.

“There’s one teacher from the four main subjects – Math, English, Social Studies, Science,” said Sheaffer. “Then we have Mrs. Johnson who does the pool area, and Mrs. Martin from the tech/art department, and both Mrs. Troutman and Mr. Bradley helps out.”

In some cases, there is a limit to how many students get in, so not all applicants may get in the first year. At this point, the committee has to choose the best candidates.

“It’s a goal to have all four pillars, but no one is perfect, so there are times where we take things into consideration,” said Sheaffer. “For example, someone could be at school 15 hours a day and not have as much community service hours so we try to weigh the pillars.”

When the final decision is made, acceptance letters go out to the parents of those students who got accepted. From here, the parents often decide whether they tell their kids or they try to keep it a secret.

“It was very exciting to hear that I got into NHS,” said Colby Starr (11). “I get to see all of the hard work that I put in over the years and how it finally paid off.”

After the acceptance letters go out, the induction date has to be set and from there the planning process for the ceremony takes place.

“The planning of the ceremony gets stressful sometimes because you are planning a school-wide event and you have to tell teachers and we have to send out an alternate schedule,” said Sheaffer. “Mrs. Amsley does all of the RSVPs because we need them to hold seats in the auditorium of all the family that’s coming. We also throw in a cookie and punch snack time afterwards, so Mr. Stull and I have to order the food. Then we have to set up the stage with the chairs, the podium, and the table with the candles…Mrs. Blair irons all of the covers for us.” 

At the beginning of the induction ceremony, Mr. Samuel Dickey (Faculty) started off by thanking the people who put the event together. Then he invited Nicholas Alfree (12) to the podium to read off the names of the newly inductees and explain what they are a part of both in and out of school. 

“I did a mission trip with my church and I helped out at retirement homes by playing the guitar and playing games with them,” said Kierra Griffith (11). “It was important for me to get into NHS because I value my academic achievements and I want to help people as much as possible.” 

Once all of the new members have been introduced, Kamari Moser (12), Sarah Kimmel (12), Paige Hartman (12), and Megan Rummel (12) explained what each of the four pillars mean. After they spoke, they lit a candle to represent each characteristic.

After presenting the pillar of Service, Paige Hartman (12) lights the last candle.

           Finally, Mr. Rodney Benedick (Faculty) had each member repeat the NHS pledge. The ceremony ended with pictures being taken and a follow up snack held in the cafeteria. 

October Festivities

October+Festivities
October Festivities

Dancing Through the Decades

President+of+Student+Council%2C+Sarah+Kimmel+%2812%29+paints+a+sign+for+spirit+week.

President of Student Council, Sarah Kimmel (12) paints a sign for spirit week.

Homecoming has been a tradition at James Buchanan High School for many years. For alumni, it’s a time to reminisce. The student body sees it as a time for dancing and pep rallies; however, for a small group of students it’s the busiest time of the year. The Student Council takes on a hefty workload behind the scenes to make sure this grand event runs smoothly. 

“We had a work day right after school ended last year to plan the dance,” said Bella Shupp (11), “We laid out all the details.” 

This year, Homecoming is much earlier than previous years. This put extra pressure on Student Council members to have everything ready on time. Students usually come to the dance and see the decorations, but don’t realize how much work and planning it requires. They had to book the DJ, make decorations, design t-shirts, and plan the pep rally. 

“We put up flyers and made a bulletin board to help spread the word to get participation,” said Timothy Helman (10). 

The theme is “Dancing Through the Decades.” To promote the theme, the bulletin board was decorated with records and retro fonts. For Spirit Week, each day was a different decade starting with the 50s and ending with the 90s. 

“We chose this theme because it is easy for people to participate,” said Helman.

Many people within the school own Converses, scrunchies, and many other things that were popular fashion trends in past decades. This makes it easy to show school spirit and participate throughout the week. The Student Council also wanted to boost school spirit even more; they plan to do this through the pep rally with fun games and songs. 

“The Homecoming candidates will be singing karaoke,” said Shupp, they will also be doing a fashion show with toilet paper.” 

The Homecoming King candidates this year are: Nick Alfree (12), Brady Bigler (12), Dean King (12), Grant Souder (12), and Jacob Troupe (12). The Homecoming Queen candidates are: Kaitlyn Ebersole (12), Lily Faust (12), Ella Heckman (12), Reilly Heinbaugh (12) and Hannah Kimmel (12). 

“All the seniors nominated candidates,” said Shupp. “Then the whole school is allowed to vote for the final King and Queen.”

Typically the football game is on a Friday night and the dance takes place the next day on a Saturday night, but this year the game and dance are all in the same day. Saturday at 1 PM the game starts. At halftime the King and Queen will be announced, then at 7 PM the dance begins. 

“I just hope that everyone has fun at Homecoming. It’s a time to relax and not worry about school,” said Shupp.  

At the end of last school year, members of Student Council congregated together to plan out next year’s Homecoming. Since then, Student Council has been implementing their ideas that were written down on paper into reality. 

 

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