Jeffersonville High School Has Its Third Annual Dance Marathon, and Raises Over $23,000 For Riley Children’s Hospital

On Saturday, May 10, Jeffersonville High School had its third annual Dance Marathon, an event that brings awareness about Riley Children’s Hospital. The event revealed the amount of money raised throughout the year for the hospital, which totaled $23,540.01. The original goal for the amount of money raised was $25,000.

While the Dance Marathon was small in number, those who attended made up for it in spirit, dancing to music and lighting glow sticks in honor of those who have had cancer.

The event had speeches from patients of Riley Children’s Hospital, including Derwand Wilson and his fourteen year old daughter, Genesis, who has severe scoliosis.

“My daughter, Genesis….she has been going to Riley for the last ten years….Our experience there has been amazing, as far as making sure that all the surgeries are scheduled…and follow up visits, financial situations,” Derwand said.

Genesis said of Riley, “During my experience of going through surgeries…I’ve had very amazing surgeons.”

Derwand said of Dance Marathon, “I thought this was awesome, I had no idea that you all even did this….I think it’s amazing.”

Natalie Bronson, a teacher at Jeff High, said that she participates in honor of her niece.

“I lost a niece when she was three years old,” Bronson said. “She had a brain tumor and this has always been real near and dear to my heart just because we have a personal experience with losing a very small child.”

Mariane Fisher, JHS Academy Coach and one of the sponsors of the community service club, Key Club, thinks that this year’s Dance Marathon “was, in some ways, one of the better ones that we’ve had.”

“I was hoping we’d get to the $25,000,” Fisher said. “But I’m happy with the $23,540.01. That’s a great total. Everybody worked really hard for that.”

by Greta Reel

Jeffersonville’s Promise Will Stand…For Now

Bill challenging the Ivy Tech scholarship program fails to move to the full Senate for a vote

Jeffersonville’s Promise, a program that gives qualifying Jeffersonville High School graduates a full tuition scholarship to Ivy Tech Community College, has survived legislation intended to strike down the program. According to the News and Tribune, the bill failed to move from committee to the full Senate for a vote this week, so there is not enough time to pass the bill before the end of the session.

The city of Jeffersonville announced the program in November 2018. The city pledged that 150,000 dollars of Tax Increment Funds (TIF) for the next five years would fund Jeffersonville’s Promise. This is the first partnership of its kind in the state of Indiana.

However, the program has had its fair share of battles. In February, New Albany representative Ed Clere and co-sponsors proposed a new bill in the Indiana House that would have changed the spending of the TIF funds, which would directly affect the core of the new program. At that time, many expressed concern that the program would be eliminated.

Jeffersonville High School principal Julie Straight said that during that time of uncertainty, she had many students and parents reach out to her, some of them even in tears.

“Some had not made applications for housing or to some other schools once Jeff’s Promise was presented,” Straight said. “Because they made their decision. They were going to use that for their beginning college education. (They were) very upset that they’ve missed deadlines and they’ve missed out on opportunities that they would need.” Straight added that she heard of some students “really upset that…maybe they wouldn’t be able to go to college.”

Senior Amber Rowe, who plans to attend Ivy Tech before transfering to a four-year program, was relieved when the bill failed to pass. “If they had dropped the program, it would drop the rate of people who can afford college.”

Sophomore Mollie Davis agreed, stating that “Jeffersonville’s Promise would greatly help my peers who maybe couldn’t afford college on their own. It gives them a chance at a great future and an opportunity to make their own impact on the community.

To qualify for the scholarship, students must fit the following criteria:

  • Jeffersonville High School graduate from the Class of 2019 and those classes thereafter.
  • Students who have earned a minimum of a 2.0 high school GPA and maintain a 2.5 GPA while enrolled while enrolled at Ivy Tech.
  • Students who have completed the FAFSA.
  • Enrolled in credit-bearing and workforce-focused courses towards attainment of a certificate, certification or degree at Ivy Tech.
  • Students must enroll at Ivy Tech during the Summer, Fall or Spring term after their commencement from high school starting in Fall 2019.

Although the partnership has come with some controversy and criticism, Jeffersonville’s Promise will help the student body and open many opportunities that weren’t there before.

By Sophie Rousseau and Greta Reel

Might as Well Face It: You’re (Possibly)… Addicted to Love

Drugs and alcohol seem to be the first thing that crosses one’s mind when they hear the word addiction. Webster’s Dictionary defines the word addiction as noun; the fact or condition of being addicted to a particular substance, thing, or activity. This backs up that singer Robert Palmer was right all along back in 1985 when he sang, “you might as well face it, you’re addicted to love.”

As you know, here at Jeff High we are teenagers. We have our education that is a priority, as well as our families, social life, extracurricular activities, jobs. Some people are fine being by themselves, they actually find peace in being alone. Others cannot stand being alone. What they can’t go without isn’t drugs or alcohol; it’s other people. It can be different types of relationships, friends and/ or significant others. Often times it can even be unhealthy relationships, just for the sake of being in one.

Apps with maps and locators, immediate status updates, access to live footage of what is going on. This has all led to a new condition: FOMO. Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) is anxiety that an exciting or interesting event may currently be happening elsewhere, often aroused by posts seen on a social media website. For some of our parents the connection was a pager, but they still had to make the effort to find a phone to return a call. Cell phones were common in the late 90s and now they are an expected social norm. Add in the various methods of social media and now someone always knows what everyone else is doing.

The fear is real for those individuals; they are scared of not knowing everything going on with everyone else and not being included all of the time. Some have to interact or be around other people to function, they can’t make decisions or act on their own. They want to be included, and want to belong. Sadly, our society has become one where people value their self worth based on how many likes or retweets or shares their social media posts get. Our generation has the explosion of social media avenues to easily see what our peers are doing all of the time. There really is no escaping it.

It’s been called being codependent; being needy, awkward and insecure are just a few of the words used to describe feeling the need to be around someone. It can present to other people as desperation, nagging, clinginess. I’ve heard it referred to as being approval seeking, attention seeking or sometimes just downright crazy. There is a fine line and a difference between loving someone, being addicted to someone and obsessing over someone. How do you know if you are addicted to someone? At first it isn’t easy because just like drugs there is the high and good feeling in the relationship. Regardless of how that friend or significant other treat you, you keep running back to them to get that fix. When it’s good, its rewarding but when its bad, it’s usually very bad and unhealthy. You are left with a psychological dependence where you think you need the other person.

You lose your sense of self which can affect your mental health, your education, your successes and other relationships and friendships around you. Just like with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, there are 12-step programs, rehabs and books to help you learn how to stop being addicted to people. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

Written by Hannah Thibedeau

Caffeine: Harmless Habit or Addictive Drug?

The media portrays the word addiction as a terrible thing, and it no doubt can be one, in certain circumstances. Drugs and alcohol are the main things people associate the word addiction with, which are obviously two of the worst possible forms of it; however, there are many other addictions that aren’t life- threatening.

Caffeine, though being categorized as a drug, is not a serious health problem. Experts do not consider this addiction consequential, even when consumption of the “drug” has been seen to cause hallucinations and people who go without face major withdrawal symptoms. Sophomore Kaelin Elsner stated, “When I go like a week drinking caffeine every day and then go a day without it I become very irritable and sometimes get headaches.”

The reason for caffeine not being a serious addiction is the high amount of positive impacts it has on consumers – for example, an increased sense of alertness and wakefulness, which is sometimes vital for people who lack in sleep, or in general just need an extra push.

It was found that addictions usually begin when people are under the age of 18, and develop more into their adult years. Which means that high school is the main time people get introduced to their addictions. Caffeine is known to give people extra energy. Ranging from just needing a little push to get to school in the morning to bouncing off the walls and staying up all night with your friends on the weekends.

“I usually don’t go out of my way to drink caffeine, I just like the taste of soda and energy drinks,” added Elsner. On an Instagram poll with around 200 votes, it is shown that 58 percent of people use coffee as their source of caffeine; however, younger adults and high schoolers seem to turn more toward soda.

Whatever the source of caffeine, it’s up to each person to weigh the immediate benefits with the potential side effects.

Written by Adley McMahel

Another View: Experimentation Doesn’t Always Lead to Addiction

It’s easy to conclude that first of all, the use of drugs that are claimed to be “gateway drugs” is on the rise, and the consequences for these are severe. For example, at Jeff High, if you are caught with marijuana or alcohol on school campus, you’ll be arrested without any question.

However, I do not believe that experimentation of these substances directly lead to the use of harder drugs like cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine. Though majority of drug abusers have started from abuse of marijuana and/ or alcohol, correlation does not equal causation.

Not everyone who uses is susceptible to addiction. Addiction can be acquired through familial history, poor mental health, and a number of different reasons, but not necessarily because of some irresponsible decisions in high school.

Written by Bella Bungcayao

Any Drug Carries Dangers, With Risks Beyond Addiction

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When you look at the impact of drug use, it is natural to wonder how addiction starts. “In most cases, nobody starts with hard drugs,” said Scottie Maples, a Colonel with the Clark County Sheriff ”s Office. “They start with marijuana.”

Many people believe that “gateway” drugs don’t exist. However, Maples disagrees.

“There’s people that want to push the limit,” Maples said. He believes that there are people with personalities which are attracted to addiction. While not everyone who uses “softer” drugs become addicted, users should be wary.

According to Drug Watch International, almost 90 percent of cocaine users began smoking tobacco, drinking alcohol, or using marijuana before trying cocaine. While this does not show that all marijuana users become addicted to drugs like cocaine, it does show that trying marijuana can be a starting point for using hard drugs.

Maples says there are dangers with any type of drug, whether it be marijuana or heroin. In Indiana, if someone is at fault in an accident and someone is injured or killed, having marijuana in his or her system can cause more problems than you might think.

“You could smoke marijuana 20 days ago, not be high, crash a car, hurt or kill somebody, and go to prison because you smoked marijuana 20 days prior to that,” Maples explained. “If that doesn’t open your eyes about smoking marijuana, and how it can get real bad for you, I don’t know what does.”

Maples tells teenagers to stay busy and driven. He believes if teens are involved in activities, it could keep them out of trouble.

“The more you’re involved in positive programs, whether it be sports, theater, or art, the less chance you’re going to have to go down these avenues to become addicted to drugs,” he said.

Written by Kristen Jacobs

The Addictive Nature of Drama and Gossip

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Once a teenager reaches their high school years, they will quickly learn the notorious nature of tension amongst their peers. Though it is unspoken, there is a very apparent culture of having a chip on everyone’s shoulder, and saying one wrong word on someone else’s name can cause an uproar of backlash on social media, in the classrooms, and out.

The word “drama” has lost its association with theater. Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines drama as, “a state, situation, or series of events involving interesting or intense conflict of forces”.

They also define the word “gossip” as, “a person who habitually reveals personal or sensational facts about others”. However, most teens would disagree with this definition, as the majority of “gossip” that is spread is far from factual.

Both of these definitions have a negative connotation, but why are they so common?

High school is a strange time of transition for every student. In the short span of four years, a student will almost inevitably be exposed to several crucial life experiences such as the loss of friendships, falling in love, betrayal, failure and so forth. We’ve all been there.

With that being said, it’s not so surprising that those who haven’t yet reached the maturity to take these experiences with a light heart, are acting out.

This phenomenon has been a relevant issue this year at Jeff High, and predominantly within the underclassmen. According to several seniors and juniors, there is more tension amongst the school than anyone has ever seen before.

It is extremely easy to walk the halls at this school and hear about who did what over the weekend, which friends are fighting, which couple is breaking up… as if any of that information is anyone else’s business except for the subject’s.

And those involved are not adamant to stop it. They feed off of it. Much like an addiction.

There are several theories as to why this is, which span from the emotional turmoil that is puberty to lack of attention at home. For those of you concerned that this inevitable phase of life won’t come to an end, just take a step back and breathe. High school isn’t near as long as it seems.

By Bella Bungcayao

Photo by Amber Rowe

Vaping Gains Popularity Among Teens, Causing Concerns about Health

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Toxic chemicals, brain damage and fruit flavorings. Many would think that these words don’t go together. However, for those who vape, these words combine on a regular basis.

Vaping is the use of e-cigarettes to inhale a flavored vapor packed with nicotine and other substances. Vaping is often advertised as helping smokers stop smoking, as e- cigarettes are considered safer than traditional cigarettes.

If vaping helps smokers stop using cigarettes, then what’s the problem? The answer is simple: vaping is extremely popular among people who never smoked at all, including teens. While vaping may be safer than cigarettes, it still comes with risks of its own.

Vaping is dangerous for teens because the large amount of nicotine can permanently alter developing brains. Not only that, but e-cigarettes contain other harmful substances, including formaldehyde and lead, that can cause lung damage such as popcorn lung (a disease that damages the smallest airways in the lungs, making it difficult to breathe).

One brand, JUUL, is popular among students because the devices can be concealed easily. JUULs come in many flavors, making them even more appealing. Because of this, JUUL has been accused by the FDA of marketing their devices toward minors and getting a new age group hooked on nicotine.

In an article published on April 24, 2018, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb,M.D., stated: “The troubling reality is that electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), such as e-cigarettes have become wildly popular with kids. We understand, by all accounts, many of them may be using products that closely resemble a USB flash drive, have high levels of nicotine and emissions that are hard to see. The FDA must – and will – move quickly to reverse these disturbing trends and, in particular, address the surging youth uptake of JUUL and other products.”

Vaping is a national issue, as well as a local one. William Eihusen, an assistant principal at Jeffersonville High School, said vaping has had “a negative impact on the school, basically through discipline.” He added, “There’s been kind of an uptick in students using vape sticks in class and so obviously as an administrator, we deal with that a lot more than we do with traditional cigarettes.”

Eihusen elaborated on the consequences for students caught vaping: “If a student is caught here and it’s the first time with any type of tobacco product, which includes vaping, typically as long as there haven’t been any other significant issues in the past, they would receive three days at the alternative school,” he said.

Nola Garrison, the nurse at Jeff High, grew up in a time where smoking was glamorized and says that in today’s society, vaping is just as trendy.

“People just didn’t know how addicting nicotine was and how harmful cigarette smoking was, but were bombarded with the practice,” Garrison said.“Vaping has many of the same long- term dangers of smoking and a few additional dangers of its own.”

Students who vape are divided on the issue. One anonymous student has been vaping daily for almost a year and says that in addition to vaping being dangerous, it costs him a lot of money.

He said of the habit, “I would’ve saved probably hundreds of dollars if I never started and also wouldn’t be addicted to such a harmful substance.”

Another teen says she’s been vaping daily for four months, but that she mostly vapes as a relaxation technique. She focuses on the positive aspects of vaping. “I wish I hadn’t started vaping due to the habit that I formed, but I also don’t regret it because it’s actually helped me a lot,” she said. “Vaping has strongly helped me deal with anxiety and being under a lot of stress.”

Society may be divided on the issue of vaping, but one thing is certain: vaping can have numerous health consequences.

Garrison said, “The more unnatural products we introduce, the more unnatural consequences we should expect from our bodies, which moves us further from our baseline healthy state. Everything has a point of failure.”

Written by Greta Reel

Photo by Caleb Sorrells (Not on school property)

The Powerful Pull of Video Games

There always seems to be a new game that “everybody” is playing, from Flappy Bird to Fortnite. Over the years, video games have become more alluring and addicting to children, teens and young adults. According to World Health Organization (WHO), gaming addiction in some cases can qualify as a disorder.

The people who use video games as a distraction from their problems instead of doing something to solve them could cause more problems. Those problems can, in turn, cause more gaming. It’s a vicious cycle. That is why gaming addiction can get to the disorder level of severity if left unchecked.

For gaming disorder to be diagnosed, according to WHO, one has to have one or more of these symptoms: little control over playing video games, prioritizing gaming over regular activities and continuing to play even when there could be negative consequences. For gaming to be considered a disorder, it has to majorly interfere with social, home, school or work life. Symptoms must also be prevalent for 12 months.

Rewards within a game, such as login streaks and global rankings, encourage users to log into a game regularly. The reward feature gives the gamer a sense of accomplishment. Consequently, the more rewards or in-game items they receive. As a result, the cycle continues.

Some people use video games for social and entertainment purposes. But like other addicting things, there is a science to why video games are addicting. Like social media and slot machines, video games are intentionally designed to get people to spend a lot of time on them.

People who get a gaming addiction or disorder can play games either recreationally, or to temporarily escape their problems and stresses. Both groups spend time playing, getting in-game rewards and feeling like they have accomplished something.

Gaming disorder, despite skepticism toward it, is a real addiction and should be treated as so. Gaming addicts need strategies and coaching to get off of their addiction. An avid smoker or alcoholic needs support and strategies to get off of their addiction; they can’t quit “cold turkey.” Gaming addiction should be treated similarly.

Written by Meredith Shepherd

Staff Editorial: It’s Time to Own Up to Addictions

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There are many different types and forms of addiction, from cell phones and video games to alcohol and drugs. Addiction has made its way all through society from young children to older adults. Addiction has shown itself through many things that people have attached themselves to. Even addictions that seem harmless can have detrimental effects, whether people realize it or not.

In this issue, The Hyphen will inform you on many different types of addictions that are still relevant and will continue to be for many more years to come. So, how will society contribute to stopping these addictions? It starts with acknowledging that drugs and alcohol aren’t our only addictions. If it’s hard to stop doing something – whether it’s drinking Red Bull or checking your Instagram or keeping up with the latest drama – that thing has power over you. If you want to regain your power, start with admitting to its addictive nature – because whether you believe it or not, even something that seems insignificant could potentially be harmful in the long run.

Guest commentary: We believe bowling should be considered a sport here at Jeff High

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Bowling is already labeled as a sport at the professional level. It is also counted as a sport at other high schools, including Jasper and Ben Davis.

Plus, the Rollin’ Red Devils had one of the best records of any team at this school so far this year. The team brought home not only a Sectionals Champion trophy, but also a Regionals Runner-up trophy. The Rollin’ Red Devils also went all the way to semi-state this year for team event.

This is only the third year Jeff High has had this bowling team together. We have made a lot of progress, so let’s keep the ball rolling.

Written by Conner Shaw and Bret Cooper