Best of SNO

Stories from West High School
Unmuted
Features

Marta Leira | October 20, 2020

The streets of Iowa City were lined with protesters demanding racial equality. Groups chanting “Hands up, don’t shoot” and “Say their names” filled every corner of the city while voices echoed…

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Broken season
Sports

Krisha Kapoor | October 19, 2020

As the summer heat fades into an autumn breeze, the cool weather is normally met with roaring crowds on the bleachers of West High and the excitement that comes along with the fall sports season. The cheering…

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The digital dilemma
Features

Heidi Du | October 19, 2020

COVID-19 paired with election season has caused a surge in the amount of political discourse that takes place online, leaving students to distinguish between what’s real and what’s fake.

In terms…

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On call: students, siblings and learning online
Features

Kailey Gee | October 2, 2020

Even in a normal school year, it can be difficult to balance school and home life. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought this clash to the forefront. With everyone doing school at home up until this week,…

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Surviving cancer: five years later
Features

Bess Frerichs | September 30, 2020

When I was a kid, my house was full of music. My mom, Dannye Frerichs, was a singer. She sang in bands and at concerts, but what I remember most is hearing her sing at home. She would sing while getting…

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Disastrous derecho: Iowa’s unexpected storm
News

Maya Chu | September 8, 2020

Nearly 8,300 homes were damaged in a matter of minutes. A gloomy Monday morning in Iowa turned into a disastrous storm with wind speeds reaching 140 mph, equivalent to a major hurricane. This storm…

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Athletic adjustments
Coronavirus

Caroline Chandler | May 26, 2020

Amongst the flood of cancellations, spring sports seasons are no exception. What will become of the summer season has yet to be announced. Athletes are doing their best to stay in shape and keep their…

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Trapped
Coronavirus

Hanah Kitamoto | May 22, 2020

Six feet. That’s the distance every person is recommended to stay physically apart from others, according to the CDC. Although social media and other online communication methods can partly fulfill the…

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Working from home: teaching while parenting
Coronavirus

Bess Frerichs | May 22, 2020

When schools closed after spring break to not reopen for the rest of the year, science teacher Jenny Eustice had to figure out how to homeschool her kids while teaching her classes. Jenny’s kids are…

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A virtual Ramadan
Coronavirus

Hayate Mustefa | May 20, 2020

You rush to a table full of food as soon as you hear the call to prayer. “Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar” (God is the greatest, God is the greatest) is all that echoes in your head as you break your fast…

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Environmental side effects
Coronavirus

Katherine Shoppa | May 18, 2020

In the past few months, the world has been turned upside down. There have been over 3.2 million COVID-19 cases worldwide and on April 27, the U.S. surpassed 1 million cases and became the country with…

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Stay-at-home athletes
Coronavirus

Owen Aanestad | May 15, 2020

The spring sports season came to a sudden halt on March 16 when the Iowa City Community School District announced that they would suspend classes until April 13, preventing track and field’s upcoming…

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I am not a virus
Coronavirus

Soomin Koh | May 5, 2020

It’s a Sunday afternoon, and my dad returns home with a load of groceries after a trip from the store. With a sullen look etched on his face, he sets the bags on the kitchen countertop. I ask him about…

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Overcoming obstacles
Features

Hanah Kitamoto | April 29, 2020

Language is everywhere and it’s surely unavoidable. Homework, tests, socializing and even a quick trip to your local coffee shop will require you to use language. As English is the most common language…

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Remodel the model minority
Opinions

Jenna Wang | April 29, 2020

We all know the common Asian stereotype: super smart, math geeks and are perfectly quiet. Asians have achieved more success than any other minority and are therefore the model to follow, otherwise known…

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Viral.
Coronavirus

Marta Leira | April 28, 2020

Halfway across the world, the impact wasn’t immediate. It all started in late December, when a few individuals in Wuhan, China were diagnosed with pneumonia from an unknown cause. As cases spread throughout…

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UI student creates “Errand-ers” program to support community members vulnerable to COVID-19
Coronavirus

Sumner Wallace | April 13, 2020

With talk of the coronavirus and how it will affect daily-life saturating the media, things can appear pretty bleak. However, one University of Iowa student is finding the good by being the good.

On…

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COVID-19 transforms landscape of spring sports
Coronavirus

Hanah Kitamoto | March 27, 2020

On March 16, the Iowa High School Athletics Association and Iowa High School Girls Athletic Union announced that all Iowa high school sports have been suspended until April 13. This news has mainly impacted…

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A stroke of good fortune
Features

Alex Carlon | March 20, 2020

The enthusiastic ramblings of host Pat Sejak and tender smile of Vanna White are two comforts that many Americans tune in for on a weekly basis. The high-stakes competition and fun-loving spirit of…

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What does the West High community know about the coronavirus?
Coronavirus

March 16, 2020

The coronavirus, officially known as COVID-19, is a respiratory disease that was first detected in Wuhan, China. There are more than 115,000 cases as of March 10, 2020 (after this video was filmed) and…

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More than a head covering
Features

Carmela Cohen Suarez | March 13, 2020

For some women, leaving the house without having their favorite ring, watch or scrunchie is an abnormality. For many, there is a specific article of clothing that they would not feel comfortable going…

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Transfers on the rise for West athletics
Showcase

Joe Goodman | March 10, 2020

It’s almost an unspeakable phrase in Iowa high school sports: transfer.

Whenever a student-athlete transfers to a new school, particularly without changing their residence, rumors and speculations…

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Calling the shots
News

Annabel Hendrickson | March 5, 2020

One thousand four hundred eighty-five students. All with different backgrounds, and most importantly, different germs. With 1485 opportunities for disease, the school can provide a breeding ground for…

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Disconnected.
Features

Alice Meng | March 4, 2020

Introduction
It’s a new day at school and you walk in the building with a pair of new shoes and a fresh haircut, a bounce of confidence with every step you take.

Suddenly, someone makes fun of you,…

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Regrowing confidence
Features

Fareeha Ahmad | February 26, 2020

Like any typical teenager, Ellie Garcia ’21 loves sweet treats and spending time with friends. On one hot summer day in Maryland, before her freshman year, she decided to go out and get ice cream with…

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Friend crush: Katy Nahra, Ann Rocarek and Christian Aanestad
Features

Misha Canin | February 24, 2020

In the morning, the three meet for coffee ahead of their busy days. At lunch, they are gathered around the dining table in room 102, definitely not gossiping about their students. In the evenings, they…

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Beneath the jersey: the 20-year history of sports uniforms at West
Sports

Joe Goodman | February 24, 2020

Forest green and Vegas gold. 

The colors that so classically represent West High athletics, or at least are supposed to.

For athletes competing under the West High name, having a high-quality uniform…

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From students to colleagues
Features

Bess Frerichs | February 17, 2020

Having taught at West High for 34 years, social studies teacher Gary Neuzil has had thousands of students. Some of which have gone on to be teachers themselves. An even smaller number, just four, have…

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Behind the burrito buddies
Features

Marta Leira | February 14, 2020

Chicken or steak? Rice? Beans? These are just the first in a series of many difficult decisions you must make as you order your burrito. Lettuce? Cheese? Guacamole? (It’s extra by the way.) But what…

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The man behind the merch
SNO's 18 Under 18

Natalie Dunlap | February 12, 2020

All it takes is an Instagram story from Chris Kim ’20 directing his followers to wear their Chong’s shirts and the next day more than a dozen students, and on occasion, a teacher, can be spotted in…

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Iowa caucus recap: student perspectives and result analysis
News

Natalie Dunlap | February 12, 2020

Many West High students, faculty and families took to their polling places on Feb. 3 to support their candidate of choice in the 2020 presidential election at the Iowa caucuses. For a majority of students,…

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For the kids: why they dance
Features

Bess Frerichs | February 12, 2020

Lucy Roth was diagnosed with cancer, a softball-sized tumor in her brain, when she was only two. She was admitted to the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital immediately and went through multiple surgeries…

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West journalists take on boxing
Video

Tosh Klever | February 11, 2020

Boxing is not a sport many athletes decide to take on. For the well-conditioned athletes at ICOR Boxing the boxing gym prioritizes the community and personal growth of their members. For the last three…

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Elizabeth Warren at West days before Iowa caucus
News

Paras Bassuk | February 4, 2020

Hundreds of Iowa City residents filled the gym to show their support for Democratic candidate, Senator Elizabeth Warren, on Feb. 1, just two days before the Iowa caucuses.

As the dense crowd awaited…

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Iowa caucus preview: how students can get involved this February
News

Natalie Dunlap | February 3, 2020

With just three days left until Iowans will caucus for presidential nominees, the Iowa City area is abuzz with candidate rallies, media coverage and campaign events. Though only a percentage of West’s…

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Looking back: Changes in the Selective Service System
Features

Amelia Stevens | January 29, 2020

Published in the February 1, 1980 edition of West Side Story
(Editorial)
Registration for the draft may soon be a reality if President Carter’s Proposal for registration is put into effect. In his…

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“His Dark Materials” is the next big fantasy show
Arts & Entertainment

Edward Keen | January 22, 2020

Ever since my younger years, I’ve had an innate fascination with the fantasy genre. To be able to slide into other worlds with their very way of doing things and sets upon sets of magical attributes…

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Fighting for change: examining the combative culture at West High
Features

Alex Carlon | January 8, 2020

It starts with a loud shriek.

Shortly after, the pounding of shoes racing down the linoleum hallway can be heard from inside the main floor classrooms. Teachers seal off their class from the outside…

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The financial factor
Features

Natalie Katz | January 6, 2020

How much does it really cost to have a quality education at a public high school? Looking at the sticker price, nothing. Yet this year, according to USA Today, the average family spent $1223 on just basic…

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Fighting for faith
News

Misha Canin | January 6, 2020

It’s that time of year again. The bitter December wind whips through the air, bringing with it an equally chilling obstacle for students: the influx of exams crammed in before break. When the seemingly…

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Mixing it up
Features

Fareeha Ahmad | January 6, 2020

Turntables, headphones and deafening music all accompany the talented individuals and job descriptions of disk jockeys, commonly referred to as DJs. While most DJs may learn and perfect their style and…

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Securing safety?
News

Marta Leira | December 27, 2019

As technology has become more prevalent, security monitoring has increased, and people’s sense of privacy has gone down. Schools are no exception to this trend. Since West has opened, the administration…

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OK, Boomer
Opinions

Sumner Wallace | December 27, 2019

A new generational war has broken out, and words are the weapon of choice. Two little words in particular have sparked fury in the middle-aged and plastered smug grins on the faces of teenagers and twenty-somethings…

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Wrestling with stereotypes
Sports

Hanah Kitamoto | December 27, 2019

At first glance, wrestling mats might look soft. That’s what people thought about female wrestlers. But if you take a closer look, both are extremely tough. It took decades of dodging stereotypes and doubters…

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Looking back: Females fight sports bias
Sports

Amelia Stevens | December 27, 2019

Females fight sports bias by WSS Editorial Board 1971
Published in the September 17, 1971 edition of West Side Story
During the course of high school, certain extra-curricular activities are set up so…

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The winter blues
Features

Bess Frerichs | December 27, 2019

The changing of the seasons from fall to winter brings about time with family, hot chocolate and snow. However, it also brings shorter days, piled up homework and stressful holidays. For many individuals,…

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Emmie Boylan: living with spina bifida
Features

Bess Frerichs | December 10, 2019

The diagnosis

In December of 2014, English teacher John Boylan and his wife, Sarah Boylan, went to the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital for their daughter, Emilia “Emmie” Boylan’s,…

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Jazzing up exercise
Features

Fareeha Ahmad | December 5, 2019

While some may drive right by the “Feeling sweaxy?” sign outside of the jazzercise fitness center on Gilbert Street, other curious individuals might just be intrigued enough to stumble upon their new…

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Human Rights Campaign announces Municipal Equality Index in Iowa City
News

Bess Frerichs | December 4, 2019

On Nov 19, the Municipal Equality Index (MEI) was announced at City Hall in Iowa City. The MEI rates 506 different cities in the United States on the inclusivity of laws and policies through five categories…

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“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” encapsulates the wonder of Mister Rogers
Arts & Entertainment

Jack Harris | December 4, 2019

It’s been an astounding 58 years since Fred Rogers began hosting a television program for children, and 51 years since the premiere of the beloved show, “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.” In this era…

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