#1StudentNWI: The Red Devils kept busy through the end of the third quarter

#1StudentNWI: The Red Devils kept busy through the end of the third quarter

What recently happened?

Lowell High School (LHS) has been hosting and enjoying various activities and events recently. Some of these include the opening of the Red Devil Bistro and the annual Special Olympics basketball game.

The bistro, run by the DECA club and Small Business Operations class, opened on Monday, March 11. The student-run coffee shop opens from 7:30 a.m. to 8:20 a.m. 

The opening went smoothly, and the LHS student body has been enjoying the proximity to some delicious and inexpensive drinks in the mornings. 

Everything on the menu falls below $3.50, and the drinks range from different types of coffees, hot chocolate, smoothies, and lemonades. The bistro is located in the cafeteria, and the third-year Digital Design class at LHS wrapped the door where people order drinks to stand out. 

Not only have students been treated to morning beverages this March, but the Special Olympics basketball game took place on March 13 in the Pit at LHS. The Leadership Club (L-club) organizes this event and makes sure it's enjoyable for the players and attendees. 

The Special Olympics organization allows those with intellectual disabilities to participate in sports games and competitions. This allows them to discover new strengths and abilities that they wouldn’t have otherwise known about. 

Likewise, the athletes find a sense of happiness and normalcy through these games. They get to play a game of basketball and be cheered on by the Lowell community and the LHS student body. 

Special Olympics also encourages a better world by promoting acceptance and inclusion in all people. 

LHS observes and subscribes to the Special Olympics mission, which is why the basketball game has been a community-wide event for years. This year, the L-club chose the theme of “Together We Roar” to highlight how strong the players are and how much everyone supports them.

L-club sold shirts displaying the theme at lunch for days before the game and also at the game so that they could provide a united front to support the Lowell team.  

Admission into this game is completely free of charge every year, and everyone is encouraged to come out and support the athletes. It is always a fun and joyful setting that makes the community want to keep attending and supporting. 

What’s coming up?

LHS students are quickly approaching their spring break, set to take place from March 25 to March 29. 

Spring break is beneficial for the students because it allows them to recharge and gear up for the last quarter of the school year. 

“I’m so excited to get some time off of school and just stay home, read, and enjoy the sunshine,” said Junior Olivia Ottomanelli.

Additionally, the LHS juniors and seniors are excitedly awaiting 2024’s prom. This year, it will take place at Sts. Peter and Paul Macedonian Orthodox Cathedral and Banquet Hall on Saturday, April 13. 

The theme of the night is set to be “Big City Lights, Big City Nights.” 

The tickets cost $60 per person, which includes the cost of the dinner as well. The first days of ticket sales were on March 14, and 15, and the last days were on March 21 and 22. 

Prom is the upperclassmen's most anticipated dance of the year, and the LHS Student Council always ensures it's a night to remember. 

Staff spotlight:

Michael Schoon has taught at LHS for four years and actively teaches Psychology, Advanced Placement Psychology, and Government.

Schoon was born and raised in Lynwood, Illinois. He later received his college education at Indiana University Northwest. 

He can’t recount if he’s always wanted to be an educator, but he knew from a young age. Growing up, Schoon attended a small private school in Lansing, Illinois where the students and teachers were close-knit. In turn, he developed close relationships with all of his teachers.

“It inspired me to teach and try to recreate all of the wonderful memories I had when I was in school. At a very young age, I learned that being an educator is more than just teaching a subject and learning material; learning is a state of mind, a way of looking at the world,” said Schoon. 

He entered the teaching profession in hopes of influencing students. Thus, his most exciting accomplishment is when students are happy to learn and excited to enter his classroom. 

Schoon enjoys the opportunity to build new relationships and find new ways of conveying the information he loves. He feels that the dynamic of the students in his classroom often varies from day to day. Sometimes, they are happy and energetic, and other times they are noticeably burnt out.

“My favorite growth opportunity is trying to take that learning journey from whatever starting point I am given and adapting to meet the students where they are. It's often bittersweet when you are successful. It is the greatest feeling in the world, but when you just can't seem to get it right, it can be very disappointing,” said Schoon.

He enjoys that each day as a teacher is new, exciting, and full of challenges to grow from.

Outside of LHS, Schoon spends much of his time on home renovations and fixing and making items around his home. He also likes to travel to state parks and hike, bicycle or play Magic the Gathering at the local card shop.

Student spotlight:

Cali Kissel is a current sophomore at LHS who excels both academically and athletically. 

She is in higher-level classes and is a member of the LHS Girls Swim team and Girls Track team. She takes great pride in having won all her conference events and breaking the school's 100-back record at swim Sectionals.

Since the swim season has come to an end, track recently started up to keep Kissel busy. While not very far into the season, she is excited about what this year will bring. Recently, she and the rest of the track team were allowed to compete at Purdue University. It was a very enjoyable experience for her.

“I was given the privilege to go to Purdue. I ran the 4x2 with Michaela Montgomery, Alice Goetz, and Ashlyn Walker. I also tried high jump, but that still needs a little work,” said Kissel. 

Academically, she finds that she enjoys her math classes most. Kissel thinks it comes to her the easiest, and her current math teacher, Karen Wylie, makes the class interesting and engaging. 

Outside of school and sports, she enjoys spending time with her grandparents, eating dinner, and playing cards. She also likes watching shows and conversing with her family.

More recently, she has found her motivation through her growing belief in God and believes that her religious lifestyle has brought more light to her life. She describes herself as devoted, hard-working, passionate, and a believer in Christ.

“I’ve grown a true faith in God that has provided me with a greatly fulfilling life,” said Kissel. 

After high school, she would like to attend college and major in a helping profession, likely psychology. 

“Submit to God, and you will have peace; then things will go well for you. Listen to His instructions, and store them in your heart, Job 22:21 NLT,” said Kissel. 

Kissel lives her life abiding by the above quote from the Bible. It has greatly impacted her life, and she considers it to be the best advice she has ever received.