Tag Archives: 2011

2011 FC graduate speaks on her Peace Corps journey

Story by Wyatt Williams, Hallie Funk, Kaitlyn Winchester, Catherine Amos

Photo by Brooke Miller

When 2011 graduate Chelsey Carr joined the Peace Corps, she told them, “I will go anywhere in the world, and I will do anything.” 

Carr had wanted to join since elementary school. “I found out about the Peace Corps when I was eight years old. I knew I wanted to do something that mattered.” Her passion is helping young kids and learning different cultures. When she graduated from college, she resolved to apply.

The application process was long and arduous. Her first application was denied, but Carr didn’t give up hope. She applied again and was approved to go to Myanmar; however, soon after, she received an email asking how she felt about transferring to Moldova. 

When Carr talked about the moment she decided to go to Moldova, she said, “‘Where is Moldova? What is this country?’ I had never heard of it, and I paid attention in history class.” 

She was forced to talk herself out of her hesitation. “I was looking at it, kind of having a mental freak out- do I say yes, do I say no, what do I do?- and I was like, ‘This is so dumb. Obviously, I want to do this’.”

“This amazing, motivated young girl has grown into an outstanding socially conscious young woman. She is an inspiration and an excellent example of going out and getting the life you want,” said English teacher Karen Mayer-Sebastian, who taught Carr in high school.  

Determined, Carr waited months just to have her medical history cleared; then, she spent 10 weeks in a training program to prepare her for the years she would spend in Moldova. 

In addition, she had to learn how to speak Romanian- “one of the hardest, if not the hardest, romance language to learn,”- in order to communicate with the people she would meet. Her family supported her through the entire process, down to the day she left. “My brothers and sisters were extremely supportive,” said Carr. “I couldn’t have done it without them.”

In June of 2017, she arrived in a small Moldavian village, where she started her career teaching students the English language. During her visit, she made many relationships with the other members in her group. “Relationships are super important in Peace Corps. Everything is about relationships,” said Carr. “Without good relationships, it makes it hard to serve for two years.” 

She created meaningful bonds with the other members of her village and the surrounding community, and they accepted her as one of their own. 

Carr said, “They keep telling anyone who comes, ‘Ea este a noastră,’ which means, ‘she is ours.’ And it just shows how much I belong to the community now.”

Outside of teaching English, she also held a dance camp for kids and participated in many of the Moldovian holidays. These holidays included International Women’s Day and Paste Blajinilor, a day similar to Easter. “Every Saint day is a holiday, and you can’t do laundry on a Sunday.” 

Mărțișori, the first day of March, is also one of the most important days for Moldova. It signifies rebirth. They celebrate with food and wear red and white “mărțișor” pins on their shirts. 

Carr also noted that “food is a symbol of friendship.” “Masa,” meaning meal, is when friends and family get together and have a large meal. Foods include Sermale, which is pickled cabbage leaves, rice, wheat, and carrots. Another food they have is Plăcintă, like a pierogi, or a dumpling filled with cheese. Carr said that vegetables are very common because of how agricultural Moldova is. Her advice for anyone joining the Peace Corps is to “be open, be flexible, and try to expose yourself to as many cultures and opportunities as possible.”

The biggest lesson Carr has learned is to “be confident in who you are, but not arrogant.” Carr has been in the Peace Corps for two years and three months. As with any situation in which you are far away from home, there are some difficulties. Carr said the hardest part is being away from her nieces and nephews. She missed out on many of her family’s birthday parties and American holidays. “Not being able to go to their baseball games and ballet recitals, it’s difficult.” 

Carr said it was hard for her to come back to the U.S. and see how things have developed: America’s struggle with shootings, the changes in the government, and gender inequality. Beyond the Peace Corps, Carr plans on promoting gender equality, especially in Moldova. She said, “My end goal is to work for the United Nations.”

Carr’s journey isn’t over yet. She signed a one-year extension with Peace Corps, so she’ll be returning to Moldova to spend more time with what has become her community. Her opinion of Moldova has changed drastically since she first received the email about being transferred. The best part about it, she said, was “Embracing the unknown, because here I was really stressed about my future.” She hadn’t known what she was going to do with the rest of her life. 

“And so being able to embrace this kind of unknown, this thing, that I don’t know what my life’s going to look like in two years- and being okay with that- it was really easy to give in to that.”


December 16, 2011

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Geraghty’s Best Games of 2011

By Luke Geraghty

Watching sports is one of my favorite past times. Over the 2011 year, I have watched many nail-biting games that kept me on the edge of my seat. From basketball to soccer, I have watched great games in almost every major sport. However, I managed to cut the list of games to the three. Here’s the rundown:

#3: Notre Dame at Michigan Football (September)

This game comes in at number three because of the great rivalry the two teams have, the great uniforms that were worn, the fact it was the first night game ever at Michigan Stadium, and, of course, the fact that it was a killer game.

In this game, Notre Dame took control of the game after the first three quarters, 24-7. It looked like the Irish were going to bounce back after their disappointing week one loss to South Florida. However, Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson would take control of the game and would help lead the Wolverines to a 28-24 lead with 1:12 left in the game.

The Irish fans were left stunned until QB Theo Riddick fired a 29-yard TD pass to give the Irish a 31-28 lead. It looked all but over for the home team until Robinson through a long pass which put Michigan in scoring position with only seconds to play. Rather than trying to kick the game tying field goal, Michigan opted to throw the ball to the endzone and the end result was a 16 yard TD pass by Robinson to receiver Roy Roundtree with only two seconds left. The game left the 100,000+ fans into pure pandemonium and the viewers in shock as to what just happened.

Final Score: Michigan 35, Notre Dame 31

#2:FIFA Women’s World Cup Quarterfinal: USA vs Brazil (July)

The fact that I’m not a huge soccer fan shows just how great of a game this was. With all of the stars playing on both teams, it was hard to believe that these two teams were playing in just the quarterfinals. In the game, the U.S. scored in just the second minute of the game to take a 1-0 lead.

It appeared the game would be a shootout, but the defenses dominated the next 65 minutes and the score remained 1-0. Then, Brazil tied the game with a goal by their star, Marta. This wouldn’t be the last of her goals. The U.S. had some chances to score again late, but Brazil’s defense held them and the two teams would play in extra time.

In extra time Brazil stunned the U.S. after Marta scored her second goal in just the second minute of extra time. Brazil took a 2-1 lead. The U.S. team became desperate to try and get the game-tying goal, but Brazil’s defense wouldn’t budge. Finally, right before the extra time ran out, Abby Wambach fired a head shot from Megan Rapinoe and into the goal. U.S. fans went crazy while the Brazil fans were in shock.

The match was like a roller coaster ride and it would get only crazier once the penalty kicks started. The U.S. would eventually win in penalty kicks 5-3 in what has been described as maybe the greatest FIFA women’s soccer match ever.

Final Score: USA 2 (5) Brazil 2 (3)

#1: Marquette at Louisville Basketball (January)

It was all over. The hometown Cards were all but done. An 18-point deficit with under seven minutes to play looked out of reach. Everyone thought it was over, except for the U of L team.

Marquette had a 65-47 until Preston Knowles and of all players, Stephan Van Treese, helped cut Marquette’s lead down to 65-54. The fans at the Yum! Center started to have hope that their team could come back, but U of L still had a lot of work to do. After getting a big stop, Knowles came back down the floor and hit  a three to cut the lead down to 8. Knowles would hit two more three pointers which cut the lead down to 67-65.

Down the stretch, Louisville forward Terrence Jennings (who has always be known to struggle with his free throws) hit four out of four free throws and with not a lot of time left in the game, Louisville still trailed 70-69. Coming off a timeout, the Cardinals gave the ball to Knowles. Everyone at the Yum! Center thought the senior would take the final shot. However, Knowles fired a pass to a wide-open Kyle Kuric. Kuric made the shot right underneath the basket and the Cardinals would take the lead by 1. The sea of red in the stands went crazy, but still the Cardinals needed one last stop to pull of a miracle comeback.

Marquette drove the length of the floor but the shot by Jimmy Butler would be too short and U of L would get the win. This stunning comeback would soon be named “The Miracle on Main Street.”

Final Score: Louisville 71, Marquette 70

The year of 2011 has been a great year for sports. These three games certainly were not the only thrilling ones this year. If 2011 is only an appetizer for the games coming in 2012, then it should be another fun of year sports for all sports’ fans.

FC Football faces Jennings County tomorrow night

Tomorrow night, the varsity football team will be playing its final regular season home game against Jennings County. The game will be especially important for the seniors because it is Senior Night.

“It’s a big night because us seniors will be playing our last regular season home game,” said senior James Barlow. “Hopefully we’ll be back at home for sectionals.”

FC will be going into the game with a 5-1 record, with their only loss coming to the hands of Columbus East two weeks ago. Despite the loss, the Highlanders still feel confident they can make a run.

“Our coaching staff pushes us to the best we can be everyday,” senior Jason VanBuren.

Jennings County comes into the game with a record of 5-2. With the records similar, VanBuren thinks the game will be a challenge.

“They have a power running game, so they’ll match up well against us,” VanBuren said.

Both Barlow and VanBuren have remembered many memories while playing football for FC. Barlow said his favorite memory was playing New Albany twice during 2010 in which the Highlanders came from behind and won by one point in both games. VanBuren remembers when the team won the sectional title against Castle in 2009.

Tomorrow night’s game will begin 7 p.m. at FC.

Individuality aids at Montessori: Senior Sarah Byrn

By Nathan Hemminger

Montessori is a series of charter schools that spans across the nation. The foundation was founded by Maria Montessori, a physician who taught at the medical school at the University of Rome. The schools of Montessori use methods of teaching created by her. The methods are mainly based on a student’s individuality and specific learning style.

Senior Sarah Byrn attends Montessori school in New Albany. She has attended Montessori since eighth grade and loves it. Before Montessori she attended Highland Hills Middle School.

“I wanted to attend a school that specialized in the arts, and it wasn’t in my family’s budget to attend private school,” she said.

Byrn has, no rhyme intended, a passion for fashion, and Montessori seemed like the best place to practice her passion. There is no dress code at Montessori, and Byrn said the freedom helps her express her fashion sense.

She insisted Montessori is different from the average charter school. It lets her express her individuality in a way no public school could.

“The purpose of Montessori is to let a student specialize in something that they enjoy,” she said. “[Montessori] influenced a lot of individuality, because students came from all over.”

Another aspect of Montessori Byrn has come to love is the intimate relationships she has with her classmates and professors. She knows everyone in her class of 14 students by name and said she feels she can have a heart-to-heart conversation with any of her professors.

“I feel like I could call up any of my professors years after I graduated and have a genuine conversation with them without any awkwardness,” she said.

In addition to the atmosphere with her teachers, the grade levels are mixed together in certain classes, which Byrn said allows kids to mature at a much greater and faster level.

Each school day has a block of time set up for what is called “individual time,” which Byrn said is the equivalent of study hall. She said there are goals that have to be finished by the end of the week, rather than specific assignments. However, “finished” may be too strong of a word. Byrn said many students get extensions by modifying the goals in a way that better benefits them.

“I would say about 75 percent of the students in my class finish the goals by the deadline,” she said. This freedom benefits Byrn because it teaches her first-hand about time management.

One of the more embarrassing, although rewarding, experiences of Montessori is the three day long introduction camp. All the students of Montessori attend this camp before the school year starts. Everyone must participate in all of the activities, including the talent show and the singing of the Montessori song. Also, no bathing is permitted during this trip.

“It allows everybody to see you the way you are, basically a hot mess,” she said.

Although Byrn said she thinks Montessori is great, she admitted there are aspects of public school she misses. There is not enough money at Montessori to fund the programs found in most public schools. Also, Byrn misses seeing new faces around campus like she did at HHMS.

Despite these factors, she still sees Montessori as the place she is meant to be; at least until she graduates, which she believes Montessori has greatly prepared her for.

“I feel a lot more prepared for college than I would at a public school,” she said. “My favorite thing about community Montessori is how much it encourages you to become an individual and pursue what you are passionate about.”