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As Uber grows in the Chicagoland area, more people are starting to recognize the taxi service. Uber or “UberCab” is an international company located in San Fransisco, California. It develops markets and operates the app also called Uber. The app allows users to submit trip requests in 55 countries and over 200 cities worldwide.

 Both the drivers, who are regular people, as well as the rider can connect through GPS, so both people can stay updated on each other’s whereabouts. In addition, the company charges the riders credit card when the trip is finished.

 Uber drivers are required to have passed a DMV and background check. They must have their own car and the car must be insured. Because of these minimal requirements, the service attracts a vast array of people.

 Junior Brandon Thom’s father is currently working for Uber part time.

 “My dad’s business wasn’t doing so well, so he wanted to make up for it by doing something part time…all he needed to do was submit his information for a background check and information and pictures of his car and insurance,” Thom said.

 Thom says that Uber has been a good side job for his father, especially because he can pick and choose his hours.

 “He really likes it because he is good with driving and he knows his way around Chicago, so it’s easy for him, and it also doesn’t feel like work to him. He also likes how he can do it whenever, and how he can make over $150 on a good night,” Thom said.

 Although Uber has its supporters, the company also has its opposers. Special Ed teacher Allison Rennie says that her experience with Uber was not so pleasant.

 “I was in Boston this year on vacation, and I did not have a rental car, I used Uber a few times. Probably two of the times I used Uber the driver was taking us the long way around, I think to drive up the fair,” Rennie said.

Rennie says that she noticed the trick being played right away, and was able to call the driver out on it.

 “The thing with smart phones is you can actually map the ride and so you can see where you’re going even though we weren’t too familiar with the area, we knew they were taking us in the wrong direction,” Rennie said. “So we had a pretty bad experience.”

 Although Rennie had a poor experience with the ride, she was able to call the company and get a refund.

Uber seems to have a promising future ahead. With a catchy company name and a excellent idea behind the app, connecting riders and drivers has never been easier than this. Uber allows cities to be more accessible, while at the same time allowing more opportunities for the riders

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     Hardcore rapper Wiz Khalifa and newly found Youtube star Charlie Puth have come together to release a new single on the “Fast and Furious 7” soundtrack as a tribute to Paul Walker. 

 

     “See You Again” starts off with a soft serene piano making you feel comfortable and almost at peace. But, what will give you chills is the chorus sung by Charlie Puth. Puth’s voice seems to echo and vibrate as he hits both high and low notes.

 

     With such great vocal control, Puth dominates both chorus and the bridge of the song. What seemed strange was the choice to let Khalifa rap in this single. The lyrics themselves hold a lot of meaning, but Khalifa doesn’t compliment this tribute.

 

     Khalifa’s inability to clarify and execute the lyrics seem to make him the odd man out. Khalifa’s contribution to the song just makes it awkward and strange, mostly because he is mainly a mainstream rapper who seems out of his element when singing a song dedicated to a fallen cast member of the “Fast and Furious” franchise.

 

     Regardless of Khalifa’s involvement in the song, the lyrics are powerful and you can deem an exception for the young rapper.

 

     What helps the most in carrying out the message of the lyrics is the slow yet upbeat tempo. The beat has a sort of pull on the heart and will keep you hypnotized until the very end of the song. But the amazement doesn’t stop there, half way through the song Puth has a dramatic vocal crescendo which sends a pang of sorrow, sadness, happiness and hope all at once and in that order.

 

    It seems as if “See You Again” wasn’t enough of a tribute for the “Fast and Furious” crew, there had to be a music video. The music video is as equally mind-blowing as the song. They do an awesome job in emphasizing the growth of a family during the music video, seeming as how it’s all scenes of Paul Walker interacting with the rest of the cast in all “Fast and Furious” films.

 

     The video does feature both Khalifa and Puth, but the only difference is that both artists seem to show a lot of sincerity and raw emotion. You don’t feel awkward seeing Puth singing and playing the piano while overlooking Los Angeles, or even when Khalifa is standing in multiple beautiful scenic settings. 

 

   Both song and music video seem to have some emotional pull, and together they are a dynamic duo. The powerful pair definitely do a good job in sending out Paul’s message, “If one day the speed kills me don’t cry because I was smiling.”

 

 

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Each May, students all around the nation are united under one stressor: the AP exams. DGS is no different. The exams will run from May 4-15 and during this time nearly 570 students will be taking a variety of over 20 different tests. This year DGS has drastically changed their approach to the AP exams.

For the past few years the library has been used as the main place for majority of the testing. However, this year the administration has decided to move the exams to the Small Gym.

Assistant principal Vince Walsh-Rock explains why they decided to relocate the exams.

“What really caused us to change was because we have so many more tests. The advantage of that is [that] the library is free because that’s instructional space that kids need. The library just isn’t big enough for every single test. We will still use the classroom A100A classroom in the library, but between that and the gym that’s about it,”

With a $91 price tag on each test, many students, such as Junior Savannah Bell may feel an added pressure to perform well.

“I’m taking the AP Language and AP Psychology tests. I’m a little nervous because they cost a lot of money, but I’m pretty confident that I’ll do well since I am getting A’s in both of the classes,” Bell said

The multiple choice components of the exam are scored electronically, while the free response and essay portions are scored by trained readers every June. Students can expect to access their scores around July through College Board.

As the exams begin approaching students have a plethora of ways both inside and outside of school where they can prepare.

Many AP classes are offering after school review sessions for students who took the class first semester. AP Psychology teacher Paula Kenny explains the concept behind these sessions.

“We started our review sessions the second week of April with a session in the morning and after school. The review sessions use strategies that take into account how we learn or remember. We don’t reteach, but there [are] different kinds of review strategies,” Kenny said.

“Every chapter my students have to do the famous AP psych note cards for vocabulary because it’s like learning a new language. The notecards are all based on educational psychology research on how to learn. Even though kids don’t like them, I explain that this is based on how your brain learns the best,”

Aside from receiving college credit and saving money, the exams have numerous other benefits to them.

“Research exists that provides evidence that taking the AP Test in addition to taking the AP course increases performance in the commensurate college course,” Walsh-Rock explained.

Although seniors may be less than a month away from graduation, the AP exams are still one of the last, crucial tribulations of high school.

Senior Kevin Panthaplackal explains why the tests are important to seniors.

“AP tests are important for me because I want to get credit for all the hard work I put into the class this year. Also, I want to save my money and time in college,” Panthaplackel said

With the exams right around the corner Kenny has some last words of advice for students.

“Do not cram. There’s lots of evidence that tells us that when we cram, we’re not making connections, we’re just reading over it [and] it doesn’t go into our long term memory. It just goes into our short term memory for a couple of seconds and then it’s gone. We know that cramming doesn’t work because it’s very stressful and stress gets in the way of memory too,” Kenny said.

She recommends having enough time to prepare, getting good night’s sleep and eating healthy.

scantron b&w“Don’t eat something in high fat and sugar content because that’s going to gum up your brain. It interferes with the brain activity and it’s just not as efficient. This means that the impulses don’t travel so it slows you down and affects your concentration. So eat a decent breakfast, get some sleep, [and] walk in with a positive attitude.”

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As the school year is winding down, the boys Varsity lacrosse team is just getting started. The teams season kicked off on March 21 and the regular season is set to end on May 14 with a home game against Oak Park-River Forest.

Although the season has just started, the team is heading in the right direction. Senior Louis Mallillin says that he is looking forward to the new season.

“The season is going great. We’re currently 3-1. We lost to Glenbard West but we did win our first game against York,” Mallillin said.

DGS and DGN are combined to make the boys Varsity lacrosse team. Even though the two schools are rivals in other sports, this is not the case for lacrosse. Junior Max Morlock shares his thoughts on the team.

“Normally it’s a lot of fun for DGS to play against DGN and keep the cross-town rivalry going, but at lacrosse, we act as one big family and we really learn to appreciate and respect each others’ love for the game,” Morlock said.

Last season, the team had a 4-14-0 record. This season, the team has already picked up three wins and only one loss.

“I’m looking forward to the games; it’s really a fantastic thing to see all the hard work and dedication you put into practice pay off when you play against a team and you come out winning,” Morlock said.

Winning games is not the only new trend this season, the club has grown as well. Not only has the Varsity team grown since last season; the whole club has grown.

“Since last season, we have grown so big that we now have a freshman and sophomore team to accompany our JV and Varsity teams,” Morlock said.

The boys Varsity lacrosse team has shown much improvement since last season. Make sure to come out and support the team at the next home game on May 9 against Chicago Witney Young.

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There are 23 players on the DGS Varsity baseball team. Out of those players, nine of them are pitchers. Without all of these players out on the field there would be no game, but one of the key components to the team are the pitchers.

At practice, while the rest of the team is working on fielding and hitting, the pitchers work on something different.

DGS Varsity pitching coach Patrick Molinari describes the everyday routine for a pitcher.

“A typical practice day for a pitcher can vary depending on the last time they pitched in a game.  Most of the starters have a specific throwing routine they follow throughout the week to get them ready for their next start,” Molinari said. “They also participate in all team defensive drills, as well as even hit ground balls to the infielders if they are needed to. Pitchers also do a lot of running and conditioning. This is an important part to the life of a pitcher to keep their bodies fresh and healthy throughout the long grind of the season.”

During the games each player is focusing on their specific position, but they all have the same goal  — to win. Senior Danny Kasher talks about the pressure that is put on a pitcher.

“Pitchers are the center of the game. The game only moves if we move, we have a lot of stress because however well the team does depends on how we do,” Kasher said.

If the position of the player is a P.O. (pitcher only) they have more downtime than any other player. They spend that time working on their technique so when they get called to be put in the game they’re ready.

Senior Peter Hamot explains the determination the pitchers have when pitching in a game.

“We go max effort in every pitch; we try and outsmart the hitters and do whatever we can to help the team,” Hamot said.

Just like every other player on the team, being a pitcher comes with the demanding struggles like soreness and not playing every game and.

“You do a lot more conditioning than the rest of the players. Pitchers typically get only a couple innings a week, and then you sit.  If you have a bad game then you have to think about that for awhile until you next opportunity, which in most cases could take a week,” Molinari said.

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Many high school students’ first jobs are normally things like a waitress at a restaurant, a cashier at a grocery store or a server at a pizzeria. For many it isn’t until after graduation and even after college that young adults start getting jobs that have a more serious status or a bigger paycheck. Some students at DGS, however, don’t have these typical jobs–they have odd jobs

DGS junior Anthony Calabria has been working for the package and shipping company UPS for six months and explains his role in the company.

“At UPS I do a lot of sales. I make labels to ship out packages that people bring in and if they don’t have a box I will pack it for them and find them right size box to put it in. There is also a lot of office work like printing services, faxes, making business cards and a lot of computer services,” Calabria said.

Calabria got word of the job through his brother and was immediately hired once he applied.

“I absolutely love the job and helping people. Everyone is very nice and grateful which is great and makes me happy and proud to work there,” Calabria said.

DGS senior Kyle LaCount also has a job that may be considered odd for a high schooler. LaCount works as a door to door salesman for the Illinois Energy company, which is an exterior remodeling company. He has been an employee there for four months.

“We specialize in going around door to door consulting people about exterior work they plan on taking care of down the line. I go around and set appointments (leads) for salesmen to come in and give them quotes on windows/siding/front doors/ any door/sliding glass doors/soffits/fascia,” LaCount said.

A friend referred him to the job, which he went and applied for and received that very same day.

“I like working there because it [has] helped my social skills. I’ve always been an outgoing person and have never had a problem talking to anyone, but now I can maintain an informative conversation with anyone whenever,” LaCount said.

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Yesterday, DGS had lightning strike its campus causing a series of electrical issues in the building. The strike affected power lines on 63rd street, and there was a school-wide power shut down after 4 p.m. in order for ComEd to continue their repairs.

Associate Principal Omar Davis discussed the severity of the damage of the school’s structure and the status of the school’s repairs.

“There isn’t any major damage to the building structure…In terms of our infrastructure, electrical feeds into our building, those are fine too. For the most part, our building is sound in terms of [permanent damage]. We all know that process of a fuse blowing… we are working with the electrical company to come out and change over those fuses… they’re pretty high in voltage so we definitely want a specialized individual to come out and do that,” Davis said. “We can’t really put a time on [the repairs]. We are confident that things will be back up and running to 100 percent by the start of school on Monday… Right now we are at 90 percent in terms of functionality of classrooms.”

Davis also explained how some devices remain unable to work properly.

“We may have individual classroom speakers [or other devices] that were plugged in that may not be operational anymore. Sometimes when that power surge goes, the devices stop working and become burned out. We may have a few of those but, then again, those are replaceable.”

This morning, a team of administrators held a meeting to discuss the impact of the electrical issues on students, staff and classrooms. Davis opened up about the meeting’s discussions regarding these conflicts.

“There’s lots of problems to solve but a few of the things that we do look at in the building first to make sure we have working is, in no particular order, our cafeteria,water,heating, cooling… and our classrooms,” Davis said. “The meeting this morning was just to give our department chairs an update of what happened with the lightning strike, the work done overnight,…and now working today to move classes, if necessary, so that instruction can continue in those classes.”

The repairs ComEd performed restored a majority of the school’s power except for some areas within the B Hallway including the B hallway elevator, auditorium, little theater, a few classrooms on all three floors and the B hallway closet that affects wireless connectivity for some classrooms.

Among these areas, one of the growing concerns were shifted towards the effects to the B hallway bathrooms. Davis explained the cause for these malfunctions.

“We had a few issues in the men’s bathroom on the third floor in the B hallway…,” Davis said. “An electrical issue in the building does not affect the water…when you have automatic flushers and don’t have the manuals, that automatic flusher will not operate.”

Davis commented on the successes of resolving issues leading up to today.

“We made out pretty good. We made out in terms of having classes that were needed to move were moved and everyone’s happy,” Davis said. “It was a good day. It was a little crazy, but we made it through.”

Compiled by Joe Stellato and Sara Guagliardo

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Principal Schwartz’s message

A severe thunderstorm took it’s toll on Downers Grove South’s power. During third period lightning struck causing a power outage, which led to the use of back up generators.

Sophomore Jared Vosicky explained his initial reaction to the power outage.

“I was like ‘ah, what’s going on?’… My teacher [said] it felt like the school got struck by lightning and then freaked out and thought there was a fire. So, I got up and ran out of my classroom,” Vosicky said.

DGS Dean Angela Earwood explained the unlikeliness that DGS students will have an early dismissal because of the lack of transportation.

The news so far as explained in Principal Schwartz’s message is that the building does have partial power; it has two lines missing with a generator working as a back up. Some staff members  turned off their lights to conserve energy till the end of the school day.

Compiled by Jamilla Jackson, Joe Stellato and Guadalupe Valdivia

 

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Jackie Robinson West Cartoon

In 2014, a Chicago baseball team actually won a championship — not the White Sox or Cubs — but Jackie Robinson West; they claimed the Little League World Series (LLWS) title. Unfortunately, last year’s Little League national champions have been recently stripped of their title after Little League International (LLI) held an investigation and found that the team had submitted a falsified boundary map. As a result, LLI found the team guilty of using players who lived outside the team’s original boundaries.
These kids have been praised for their achievement last July, from parading on a double-decker bus through the city they play for, to receiving front row seats at the Major League Baseball Worlds Series and even meeting President Barack Obama. After basking in the limelight of championship honors, this team has been hit with the harsh reality of being labeled as “cheaters.” To label these kids as cheaters for something they didn’t have total control over is cruel, and taking their title away isn’t completely justified to their crime. Therefore, Jackie Robinson West should have their LLWS title reinstated — and don’t call me crazy yet.

The outcome of this entire situation rooted from the adults’ mistakes and has the kids of the team taking all of the heat. Where’s the justice in that? There has been past cases of the Little League handling situations that caused unnecessary collateral damage.

For instance, in 1975, following Taiwan’s fourth consecutive championship in 1974, Little League banned foreign teams from participating in the LLWS. They banned them while the league worked to strengthen rules against year-round practices and out-of-district players. To ban the entire rest of the world besides the USA from being able to compete in the league can’t be taken lightly, especially since the purpose behind it revolves around mistakes made by the league itself.

It just simply does not make sense to punish someone for something they weren’t responsible for. In this current case, the adults who manage the JRW are the ones who deserve the consequences for their own actions. The kids may have known that they did not live within the team’s original boundaries, yet it was the decision of the coaches whether or not to recruit players and submit their altered boundary map. Would a 12 year-old kid really be concerned about “residency boundaries” when they get invited to a team that would have a chance to win the LLWS?

Then there comes a question being brought into play: is it really cheating? If you think about it, the only thing that the players did wrong was live on the other side of town. This brings us to the issue in Major League Baseball with Barry Bonds. Bonds was a former professional baseball player who currently holds the all-time record for home runs (762). In 2003, Bonds was investigated for steroid abuse and was eventually found guilty. You would think that the league would take away his home run accolade — and you thought wrong. Bonds was sentenced a pathetic 30 days of home confinement. Compared to the punishment for JRW, it just doesn’t make sense.

The members of the team didn’t use illegal PEDs to enhance their skills, nor were they violating the age requirements. There’s really no unfair advantage given to them just by picking up kids beyond their borders. Yes, you can say that they have more access to more skilled players, but in the end, they are just normal kids who want to play baseball.

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    The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has been showcasing the best performers for over 80 years, from dancers and singers to traveling broadway acts and marching bands. This year, one such performer is a familiar face to DGS– junior Tyler Jankowski.

    Last May, Jankowski was chosen as one of two students from Illinois to play in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in the Macy’s Great American Marching Band. He will be performing with bass drum two, which is classified as the second smallest drum in the line-up.

   Although this opportunity is a significant achievement, it was not an obvious decision for Jankowski to apply.

“Last December we got a Christmas card from a family friend and their daughter made it [last year] so they were trying to convince me to do it for the upcoming year, so I was on the borderline at that moment,” Jankowski said. “I finally made a decision in February to try out and the reason was: there is nothing to loose it is just good practice at the least.”

The application process required Jankowski to stay fairly dedicated. He completed the typical written statement, but then had to make a video of himself demonstrating different skills: marching technique, foot timing, and rudiments, or playing patterns, on his drum. After applying, Jankowski had plenty of nerves and equal support for the news.

    “During the time between my audition and the day I found out I was very anxious about the result,” Jankowski said. “It was mostly the people who got me through the whole process. My parents being the first to know and the most supportive.”

Sydney Davis, senior drumline section leader and friend of Jankowski, has seen his growth and dedication to music. After finding out Jankowski’s achievement, she believed it was a no-brainer that he was given this opportunity.

“I knew that when Tyler told me he was applying for the spot in the parade that he’d have a great chance, and when the great news came in that he’d gotten a spot, I was really proud of him,” Davis said. “Tyler’s put a lot of work into music over the years and he’s very humble about his skill level, so I think that it’s great that he’s going to be recognized for his talents in such an awesome way because he most definitely deserves it.”

Band director Greg Hensel has also watched Tyler develop as a musician in the years he’s been teaching. He notes the self-accountability that separates the average musician from a player like Jankowski.

    “I have no doubt that there was a lot of practice involved when it came to preparing this, but it was probably not out of the ordinary for in to put in extra time outside of band,” Hensel said. “He sought out the process and worked on his own time to audition and prepare, which not many high school musicians can consider, or even think about accomplishing. I think this honor was well earned by Tyler and his dedication to music.”

    Hensel was not the only one to notice Tyler’s dedication, as his percussion instructor Dwayne Rawl also sees the work he puts in.

“Tyler is a great player. He knows what he’s doing, and even when he doesn’t, he works through it until he does. There isn’t a challenge he can’t face,” Rawl said.

Jankowski will be performing on Thanksgiving day, but that will not be the only moment he gets to experience from this opportunity.

“The whole band will be playing “Locked out of heaven” by Bruno Mars and “Shake it off” by Taylor Swift. While I am out there, I am going to be attending a leadership camp, sightseeing, marching the 2.5 miles, and meeting a whole lot of new people from all around the country,” said Jankowski.

Watch NBC on Thanksgiving day, Nov. 27, to catch a glimpse of the Macy’s Parade and the Macy’s Great American Marching Band.