Tag Archives: Hallie Funk

FC faculty share stories from quarantine

Editor’s Note: Journalism I students reached out to FC teachers and staff to see how they were adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic and quarantine. One pattern emerged – they were all trying to find the positive and unite others, especially through their use of technology and advice for their students. These are some of their stories. 

Melissa Eldridge

School nurse

by Hallie Funk

Just because school doors are closed doesn’t mean the learning has to stop — even for teachers. FC’s school nurse, Melissa Eldridge, isn’t letting quarantine hold her back, either. She’s taking online courses and preparing for the next school year. She’s also using this time to make a positive difference. 

“I work in mental health facilities on the weekend. I’m trying to do my part like everyone else and keep healthy.” 

However, even during a time like this, she is still available for students and their families. 

“It wasn’t until all of this happened that I realized how much of my life involved going out and interacting with other people and how important that is,” she said. 

She wants students to know that we’re all in this together. Some days are hard, but there is always something to be thankful for.

 “I’m grateful for the slow down and that I get to be at home.” She is using this time to explore new interests, such as reading and gardening. “I usually don’t like reading because I don’t have time to sit still and enjoy it.” 

Eldridge said that the school and community will get through this time and will be back at school together. “Maybe we won’t take the ‘typical school day’ for granted anymore…I know I won’t!”


Keightley Waiz

English teacher

by Zoe Nowling

FC teachers have gone above and beyond, but especially English teacher Keightley Waiz. Through this crazy time, she is reminding her students that they all will get through this. She is making her kids a priority and making it known that she is here for them. 

One of Waiz’s strategies is posting weekly videos to her Google Classroom. Her main goal with these videos is to keep in touch with her students, and she is always asking her students how they are doing during those videos. ”My students are at the top of my priority list,” she said. 

Another way that she unites people is by communicating and sharing strategies with her fellow FC teachers; she is helping and learning from them during this time as well.

”One of the silver linings in all of this has been seeing the teachers, especially in the English Department, band together.”

Waiz suggests developing a daily routine to make the days in quarantine more productive and healthy.

“I’ve learned that establishing a routine is so very crucial to having a healthy mental state. I’m still up at 6:30 every morning, and I make to-do lists every day to see what needs to get done,” she said.

Her key to uniting others is to first help herself and then make sure she is ready to help others that need her. She just wants to let others know she is here for them during this time.


Donnie Grumble

Coach and physical conditioning teacher

By Sophia Wood

“These are possibly some of the most unpredictable days of our lifetime.” 

This is a quote by Coach Donnie Gumble, the advanced physical conditioning teacher at FC. It is very noticeable that we are all going through tough times while this pandemic is happening. Coach Gumble is helping this get easier by providing encouraging tips and even showing students what he is doing daily. 

Gumble’s first tip that has helped his students is to have a daily schedule.  

“I wake up between 6-7 a.m. whenever the kids wake up, have coffee and breakfast with the family. During breakfast my wife and I set our daily schedule that includes time for work, activities with the kids, nap time, workouts, errands or chores, dinner… The kids are in bed by 8 p.m. and I’m usually asleep between 10-11p.m.” 

Gumble’s schedule reveals that keeping a routine every day can make this painless and a whole lot easier.

 “Some student-athletes have reached out to me recently expressing a lack of motivation for training, so I try to be encouraging and empathetic about those situations,”  he said.

He has been posting daily at-home workouts for the student athletes and he is also being very understanding with his students because he knows that e-learning is new to everyone. 

This is a huge turning point in society. No one knows yet exactly what is going to happen, but faculty and students are trying to stick together to make it easier. 

Gumble said, “It’s not about what happens to us. It’s about how we respond. We can’t control this situation, but we can control ourselves. Adversity creates opportunity, and the choice you have to make is what your discomfort will produce: upward growth or downward spiral.” 


Haley Schroeder

English teacher

By Madelyn Smith

During this tough time in the world, it may be difficult to spread positivity and put on a brave face, but that’s just what English teacher Haley Schroeder has done. The days bring many challenges and successes, but Schroeder seems to be doing quite well, using her second job at 812 Pizza Co. as a way to get out sometimes. 

“It has been difficult to adjust. I’m still working at 812. I’m delivering pizzas, so it’s nice to get out of the house,” she said.

As for the adjustment from school to home, Schroeder misses the people she enjoyed seeing every day, but does her best to stay in touch and healthy. 

“I miss my kids so much. I’m coping with it by trying to keep in touch and by scheduling times for us to try to meet via video chat and catch up. I also miss my coworkers.”

Schroeder certainly hasn’t lost her positive mindset during this time in quarantine. She has a plan to stay productive in the midst of the chaos. “I just keep telling myself that everyone is in this together. Plus, I get plenty of sleep every day.” 

Keeping others safe is one of Schroeder’s main goals, she has been staying away from her high-risk grandparents and delivering food to others in order to aid her family and community.

This event and new adjustments are always going to be hard at first, but Schroeder said, “Continue to stay home. Be thankful for the time that you have with your family and enjoy every second that you have with them. This virus has shown that it can be taken from you in an instant.”

Journalism I reporters select their favorite binge worthy TV shows for quarantine

As a follow-up to editor-in-chief Gracie Vanover’s review of worthy TV shows to binge watch, 10 Journalism I students offer their own binge worthy shows. 


Story by Catherine Amos

The Magicians

Many people can only wish for the ability to perform magic. Quentin Coldwater [Jason Ralph] finds what he has spent his entire life dreaming of when he stumbles onto the campus of Brakebills University for Magical Pedagogy. The show follows several students as they try to complete as much of their education as they can. It isn’t easy, and they find that magic isn’t as whimsical as they had hoped. There are much scarier things than exams and class drama, and Quentin finds that there is something off about his favorite childhood books. For lovers of the Harry Potter series, The Magicians is the perfect show to binge. It adds a darker and more conflicting perspective to the traditional whimsy of magic.

Where to Stream: Netflix, Hulu, Amazon (Prime) Video.
Age Rating: TV – 14
Notable Actors: Stella Maeve, Summer Bishil, Jason Ralph.
Seasons & Episodes: 5 Seasons, 65 Episodes.
Favorite Episode: s3e5 “A Life in the Day.”
Favorite Character:  Eliot Waugh.


Story by Delaney Cook

Bojack Horseman

If you are a fan of dark humor and psychological shows, this just might cure your quarantine boredom. BoJack Horseman is about an actor who got his big break from a cheesy 90s sitcom called Horsin’ Around.  BoJack is a hasbeen actor trapped in a pit of depression, alcoholism, and self-hatred; the show gives you a small glance of how even people who seem together may be suffering the most. A little forewarning, it might not be the best idea to watch with your parents. The show has very mature themes that might make it awkward…

Where to Stream Netflix
Age Rating TV-MA
Notable Actors in the Show Will Arnett, Alison Brie, and Paul F. Tompkins
Seasons & Episodes 6 seasons, 77 episodes
Favorite Episode “Nice While It Lasted”


Story by Hallie Funk

The Office

The Office follows the events of a typical workplace, with characters based on the original British series. But with a blend of humor, quirks, and awkwardness, it had a long run of nine seasons. It features stereotypical roles, such as Jim, the likeable employee who has a thing for Pam, the receptionist. The main character, famously known as Michael Scott, has a bit of a narcissistic and attention-seeking personality that many fans grow to love. Many times, the characters’ personalities will clash and cause awkward tensions that we can’t help but laugh at. The great camerawork adds to the humor, showing occasional, confused glances at the camera and zooming in on expressions. And just like in real life, things go wrong. Whether it’s holding a pizza guy hostage or Dwight teaching the office how to do CPR, this show is a must-watch for comedy seekers.

Where to Stream Netflix
Age Rating TV-14
Notable Actors in the Show Steve Carell, Rainn Wilson, John Krasinski
Seasons & Episodes 9 seasons and 201 episodes
Favorite Episode ”Dinner Party”


Story by Josie Hardesty

How to Get Away With Murder 

Love at first sight? More like obsession at first sight. This suspense-driven thriller can have anyone flying through its episodes in no time. How to Get Away With Murder follows a group of young, ambitious law students and their brilliant, mysterious criminal defense professor. Every year, the ruthless lawyer, Annalise Keating [Viola Davis], selects four out of the hundreds of students she teaches to work with her as lawyers. This year differs as Keating chooses five competitive, attractive, and cunning students. Although, the five soon discover that working for Keating won’t be so easy when a young girl goes missing and everyone becomes a suspect. Lies are told, betrayals are revealed, and secrets uncovered. So what happens when everyone’s alibi has to match up, and they don’t?

Where to Stream Netflix, Hulu, iTunes, YouTube, Amazon Prime
Age Rating TV-14
Notable Actors in the Show Viola Davis, Alfred Enoch, Jack Falahee
Seasons & Episodes 6 seasons and 84 episodes
Favorite Episode “Wes”


Story by Abby Hoffman

Jane the Virgin

Jane the Virgin is a hilarious and dramatic, American telenovela with five seasons. The show is about the strong Jane Villanueva [Gina Rodriguez] and her adventures through her crazy life. She lives with her extremely devout Catholic abuela [Ivonne Coll] and her not-so-devout mother [Andrea Navedo].  It is full of unexpected twists and turns and you never know what could happen next, just like an authentic telenovela. It has something that just about everyone likes, romance, comedy, crime/mystery, and a lot of drama. Jane the Virgin is a fantastic binge worthy TV show that will keep anyone on their toes.

Where to Stream  Netflix
Age Rating  TV-14
Notable Actors in the Show Gina Rodriguez 
Seasons & Episodes 5 seasons and 100 episodes
Favorite Episode “Chapter Forty-Four”


Story by Sydney Landrum

All American

All American is an up and coming TV show. Directed towards a teenage audience, it explores the challenges of overcoming adversity and showing loyalty to those who love you. The second season was just released, which made it a front contender to binge. The plot follows a football player named Spencer James (Daniel Ezra), who lives in a poorer neighborhood in South Crenshaw, California. When coach Billy Baker (Taye Diggs) shows up at one of Spencer’s football games, he is given a new opportunity. Coach Baker offers Spencer a spot on the football team at Beverly Hills High School. Spencer denies the offer at first, but then decides to take the leap into a whole new environment to fulfill his football dream. Throughout the show, Spencer faces the difficulty of the new lavish life of Beverly Hills, versus his home back in Crenshaw. The two worlds are displayed and explored deeply in the series. This gives the audience a view into how it feels to be a fish out of water.

Where to Stream Netflix
Rating TV-14
Notable Actors Daniel Ezra, Taye Diggs
Seasons & Episodes currently 2 seasons, 32 episodes
Favorite Episode ”Life Goes On”


Story by Meghana Mohankumar

The Flash

Yellow lightning crackles, a man zooms by so fast you can barely see him. Who is it? He’s the fastest man alive, and his name is Barry Allen [Grant Gustin]. Barry Allen’s mother was killed when he was 11 years old. The police arrested his father for her murder. Years later, STAR Labs creates the particle accelerator, but something goes wrong a freak storm is created and lightning hits Barry. Nine months later, Barry wakes up from a coma with superspeed. He decides to use his powers to stop crime, creating the Flash. With the help of Harrison Wells [Tom Cavanagh], Cisco Ramon [Carlos Valdes]. and Caitlin Snow [Danielle Panabaker], Barry forms Team Flash.The Flash is a unique show with its ability to mix comedy, family, love, friendship, darkness, and pain. The show explores the complexities of relationships and the importance of one’s actions. The writing in this show is phenomenal, the storylines are detailed and every single action that is made plays an important role in the overall. I think this show has something to offer to everyone, I never was a fan of superheroes, but it quickly became one of my favorite shows. The Flash is in the middle of its sixth season, episodes air every Tuesday on the CW.

Where to Stream Netflix, The CW
Age Rating TV-14
Notable Actors in the Show Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker, Carlos Valdes, Tom Cavanagh
Seasons & Episodes 6 seasons and 129 episodes
Favorite Episode “The Man in the Yellow Suit”


Story by Aidan Graef

The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead is a riveting post-apocalyptic masterpiece that draws the audience in with every second that passes. Viewers watch as a group of survivors led by Rick Grimes travel their way through the harsh environment overrun by undead “Walkers,” or zombies, as we call them. The Walking Dead is not for the faint of heart; more than once I have wanted to look away as characters have to do unspeakable things to survive in this new world. With 10 seasons and more to come, The Walking Dead will have you fascinated for hours and wishing season 11 was already here. 

Where to Stream  Netflix
Age Rating TV-MA
Notable Actors in the Show Andrew Lincoln, Norman Reedus
Seasons & Episodes  10 seasons and 146 episodes
Favorite Episode “Better Angels”


Story by Claire Furmall

Virgin River

If you have some free time on your hands, and are looking to find a new show on Netflix I know just the one for you! Virgin River. Virgin River is about a big city doctor, Mel, from California that moves to a small town up north to help the main doctor there. Upon arriving, she doesn’t quite blend well with Doc Mullins. He tells her that he doesn’t need any help and doesn’t want her there. Crushed, she then goes to the community bar where she meets Jack. He comforts her, and is sweet, and he welcomes her to Virgin River. She develops feelings for him, but finds out that he has a girlfriend and she’s not sure she wants to begin a “new life” here. Meanwhile, Doc Mullins gives her a trial period so that she can prove herself and display that she has what it takes to be a good doctor. Mel is loved by everyone in the town except Doc Mullins. But, as much as Mel wants to start over here, her sister calls from Los Angeles. She wants Mel to come home. Can she prove herself and show that she is worthy? Or will she come home with a crushed spirit? 

Where to stream: Netflix
Age rating: TV-!4
Notable actors in the show: Alexandra Breckenridge, Martin Henderson, Tim Matheson
Seasons and Episodes: 1 season, 10 episodes
Favorite Episode: “Under Fire”


Story by Kennedy Page 

The Twilight Zone

The Twilight Zone is a classic and incredibly binge worthy television series. The iconic opening and narration by Rod Serling laying out the story begins every episode. Each is a different look into new characters dealing with something disturbing or unusual in their lives as they enter a dimension dubbed The Twilight Zone. At the end there’s usually a moral, but sometimes there’s a surprise ending with no moral at all. It’s fairly slow paced, but easy to watch and pay attention to. No episode is like the other and the writing is fairly unpredictable. This series is abundant in episodes, has interesting stories to tell, will keep you on your toes, and gives you something new at the end of each episode – so binging is no problem. 

Where to Stream Netflix, Hulu, CBS, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, Google Play Movies & TV, iTunes, and Vudu
Age Rating TV-14
Notable Actors in the Show Rod Serling, Robert Redford, Carol Burnett
Seasons & Episodes 5 seasons and 156 episodes
Favorite Episode “The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street”

J1 students discuss the importance of the ACT, SAT, and PSAT

Story and graph by Hallie Funk and Gracie Cockerill

It is the time of the year for testing. Students are taking the practice tests and preparing for the dreaded SATs and ACTs. 

Last month, the sophomores completed the PSAT, along with some freshmen and juniors. Many students wonder why they have to take these tests. Although they may seem unnecessary, the ACT and SAT are very important for the college admission process, and the PSAT offers scholarship opportunities. 

Freshmen in honors classes are encouraged to take the PSAT. 

“We push those upper level freshmen to take it because then if your scores are high enough  it qualifies you for dual credit,” Sowder said. “Exposure is the greatest thing you can come away with.” 

The PSAT includes material and standards that are possible to appear on the SAT, which aids in preparing students for the test. If a freshman is considering taking the PSAT for the benefits of a good score, they should do it. But this material also proves to be more challenging.

If a student does not know whether to take the SAT or ACT, they should take whichever material they are more comfortable with. 

“The SAT has longer tests. There’s a reading test and there’s a math test. There’s also a writing portion. The ACT has shorter tests covering more subjects,” said counselor Jessica Simler. Students who are unsure which test to take should take the ACT. 

“The ACT is more aligned with here, our students typically do better on the ACT,” Simler said. Similar to the SAT, the ACT also has a pretest, but it is currently not offered. 

“That conversation has come up recently as being something we offer since we do offer the ACT,” she said. But even without the practice test, students still have higher scores on the ACT.

“We have to take the SAT and ACT to show colleges what you know. I see the reason for them,” said senior Abby Chovan. 

A student’s grade-point average reflects their academic potential, so if their scores are high, there is a greater chance of colleges accepting them. SAT and ACT scores provide colleges a standard way to judge students and indicate whether the students are ready to attend their school. 

“So it kind of assigns a number so they know what kind of student they’re getting, but it does not prepare you for college in any way,” said counselor Brittany Eisner. 

Currently, these tests are mandatory at high schools and most colleges require test scores, but not all. 

“There are some colleges that are moving away from these tests. For example, Ball State doesn’t require you to submit an SAT or ACT score,” said Eisner.  

DePaul University and the University of Evansville are some of many colleges that do notrequire these scores.

“That’s why colleges don’t rely just on test scores, they’re looking at the big picture because they understand that every student is different, some students do not test well,” said Sowder.

“I’ve grown up in school where you test to show what you’ve learned, so I think there’s always going to be some kind of standardized test.  If we didn’t have it, then it would be a free for all for college and then you’d have kids going to college that weren’t necessarily prepared because they had nothing to gauge where they’re at in their academics. So, I guess I’m saying, yeah, I think it does need to be mandatory,” said Sowder.

ACT information

2020 Test dates Feb. 8 Apr. 4 Jun. 13
Registration Jan. 10 Feb. 28 May 6
Late Registration Jan. 17 Mar. 13 May 22


SAT information

2020 Test dates Mar. 14 May 2 June 6
Registration Feb. 14 April 3 April 21
Late Registration Mar. 3 May 8 May 27


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.”