Apr 11, 2011

What is the JUA: A Student's Perspective

When I asked Mack '11 to make a JUA video he jumped at the chance. He was a student on the trip last year so he understood the program and I also appreciate his thoughtful perspectives and film skills.

Here is the video he created. I think it's so much more valuable to have a student produced video explain this program than anything I could have made. That's what the JUA is all about: young people taking action to not only learn about things they care about but also to give something back. Thanks, Mack!

Mar 28, 2011

New Media 1: Final Project

It's not a Game it's a Franchise: Final Project

Women in Professional Athletics: Final Project

New Media 2: Final Project

This Pill Will Help You Feel Better: Final Project

The Science of Shopping: Final Project

Here is the presentation from the Science of Shopping group... please also see their video below!

Race, Justice & Law: Final Project

Life Against Life: Final Project

Gridlock: Final Project

Global Voices: Final Project

The Global Voices had so much media & data they couldn't fit it into just one presentation!  First check out their video 'What would you change...'

Next check out the data they collected during the trip.

This video is a nice summary of their program.

And their presentation wraps it all together.

Mar 24, 2011

New Media Two: Individual Impression

Everyone learned many new things and had new experiences during the JUA. Below you will find a brief description of everyone’s favorite part.

Jake Kiley-
My favorite part of the trip was listening to the presentation that was put on by Mr. York’s brother about 1band 1brand. It was interesting to hear about a unique idea that one of our teachers had a part in.

Conner Redman-
My favorite part of JUA was touring the House OF Blues. Learning the history and the many famous people that have stepped foot inside the building really inspired me.

Ava Donovan-
My favorite part of the trip was touring the House of Blues. It was interesting learning about what happens behind the scenes. I also enjoyed learning about how to promote things and what the right and wrong way to do it are. Peace and love <3

Matty Fay-
My favorite part of the trip was seeing the Phantom Flex camera demonstration. Even though I didn’t understand most of the terminology, watching the footage that they took around Cambridge in slow motion was epic.

Brad Vance-
My favorite part of this JUA experience was learning about the organization 1band 1brand, which focused on the promotion of new and upcoming artists. It was a major influential experience for anyone with an aspiration for a music career.

Kat Windels-
My favorite part of the New Media JUA group was informing people about 1band 1brand, it was something that I feel will give a lot to not only the artists and designers but also the community. Giving people the information about this organization will help broaden horizons and expand the knowledge and awareness of others to media.

Cullen MacAndrew-
My Favorite part of the JUA experience was visiting The House Of Blues. From the recycled wood from hurricane Katrina used for the portraits to the Indian tapestry used as wallpaper, The House of Blues was filled with history, along with hosting some of the most popular modern day artists, it was an experience of a lifetime.

Connor Gallopo-
My favorite part of JUA was visiting The House Of Blues. This was a great experience, and really inspired me. The artists that have played there are true legends, and the way they represented them was incredible. This trip was a great way to widen my understanding of the music industry.

Chris Pingree-
My favorite part of JUA was when we got to go to the House of Blues and get a fantastic tour. This was my favorite part because I got to see the number one place to hold a concert in the world. Another thing is that they had an amazing set up for music and lighting. I am so glad that NHS holds this for the juniors every year because it really helped with college. Thanks.

New Media Two: Day Two Recap

After breakfast this morning we walked a mile and half to Rule Boston Camera to see a demonstration of the high-speed capturing camera called the Phantom Flex. It records at speeds over 2500fps(really really fast).

Here's a cool video the studio showed us made with the Phantom Flex.

After that, we took a tour of the Berkelee School of Music. The tour was interesting for many people who have a strong love for music. Berkelee is located in the center of Boston making it a unique campus and different from other colleges. We saw where they practice and perform many different types of music.

We walked to Newbury St. to grab a quick lunch and do some street promoting for 1band 1brand. We passed out and promoted 1band 1brand by handing out tokens with their logos on it, and spoke to the public about what they're all about. We found out that promoting isn't an easy task. We learned that there are right and wrong things to do when promoting. One big one is that you don't want to make it seem like your just looking for money. In order to attract people you need to think outside the box. One thing that 1band 1brand does great was instead of having regular business cards they put their logo on a wooden token as a different way to stand out.

Finally, we went on a tour of the House of Blues with Bob Dougherty, the Foundation room sales manager. The House Of Blues is the number one music venue in the world. The original House Of Blues was built in 1995 in Harvard Square and was then moved to the current venue next to Fenway Park. While we were visiting we learned a lot about the history of the venue, the original artwork throughout the venue and why it is so popular today. A lot the world’s greatest artists have performed there. Overall we learned that the venue is all about music, how it originated, what its meaning is, and what it means to the world.

New Media Two: Day One Recap

We arrived at the hotel in Boston, and dropped off our bags to go explore Cambridge. We found an ally way with graffiti covering the wall (even some from Banksy), some unique local coffee shops, and spotted some interesting people. After wandering around for a while, we went over to the MIT student center to eat. We next went back to the hotel to get ready for our 1band 1brand meeting in the hotel’s conference center. The meeting was with our group leader’s (Tyler York) brother, Kyle York, who is a driving force behind the newly created 1band 1brand.

http://www.1band1brand.com/ 1band 1 brand is a website promoting upcoming independent artists and clothing brands. They send out weekly updates completely free to subscribers, through email and newsletters. Kyle York spoke to us a lot about new and interesting ways to market products, and how we can get involved with the business side of the arts.

After the meeting we proceeded to Quincy Market to get something for dinner. There were a large variety of great tasting foods to choose from. After eating the group walked around and checked out the little shops that were in the market area. After leaving Quincy Market, we headed to the T station so we could catch a ride into the campus of Berklee, which is a world-renowned music school. At Berklee we watched a concert in the Red Room at the 939 café. There were three bands playing at the show, and all of which were upcoming underground artists. The café was mostly filled with Berkelee locals, and showed us more of the independent music scene. Some of us left after the second band, and the rest headed back during the third act to get in bed before lights out at 11.

To check out any of the bands we saw at café 939, you can go to their websites listed below:

Tiff Jimber

The Winter Sounds

Allison Weiss

New Media 1: 1band 1brand... the give back

For the "give-back" portion of our trip  we wanted to help support both "1band 1brand"  and the independent artists that is supports.  Our goal was to give out 50 of their "wooden nickel" logo tokens out to people on the street while educating them about "1band 1brand".  We learned that it was much harder than we thought to talk with people and get them to take it.  We learned that you had to work really hard and target specific audiences.  The people who gave all their tokens away talked to a lot of different people.

New Media 1: 1band 1brand

The 'New Media' group met with Kyle York, a young businessman who, along with three others, launched a new company called "1Band 1Brand." "1Band 1Brand" is a company that shares and provides exposure for new and up and coming musical artists and fashion brands. Subscribers to the company (www.1band1brand.com) are introduced to one band or music artist and one fashion brand each week. In order to spread the word about these artists, the company offers discounts and deals on one particular brand and free downloadable songs of one specific band every week. These offers last only one weeks time until the next band and brand are introduced the following week. Although the artists may not make a profit by providing the public with free music and fashion, "1Band 1Band" is an opportunity that gives them free exposure and a chance to spread their name.

At the meeting with one of the owners of the company, "1Band 1Brand," we learned that in order to start a business/company, you need to have funds and/or a day job when you first start out. We learned that it is more easier now than ever to start a business because of the use of internet and social media networks. Since this is a newly launched company, the founders/owners of "1Band 1Brand" have yet to make a profit with this idea. In order for a company like this to make it big, you have to work your way up from the bottom and eventually it will become a well known name. With a new company or idea, you have to give it time and wait for the public to become interested in it on their own. If you force it on them, they will be pushed away and become uninterested in the idea.

We learned that there are multiple people and professions involved in producing a successful company. Each different field needs to work together and rely on each other in order to create one overall product. A lot goes into the production of the company "1Band 1Brand," other than just music and fashion. Label design, network design, financial development, advertisement, and many other fields of work have to collaborate in order for this company to exist. Each field relies on each other for business opportunities that utilize their particular skill.

The speaker expressed to us that it is important for us as juniors in high school to start now by becoming involved with what we are interested in before we go to college. We should make a plan as to what we want to accomplish in our life and work our way up to it by participating in unpaid internships and becoming exposed to the field at our age.


New Media 1: House of Blues

House of Blues

The tour around the House of Blues was the best experience during JUA for me. I was always interested in music, and being on a tour of a popular venue was like a dream come true. My first impression of the house however, was the color blue (yeah, I wasn’t impressed.) Later when we walked around and saw the music hall, the restaurant and the backstage area I found out that the House of Blues is full of hidden meanings that are expressed in paintings and different artworks that are all over the house. For example; Famous musicians like Jimi Hendrix, Elvis Presley, Eric Clapton and many more have their portraits in the house. There is a section where musicians faces have been sculpted into the wall and illuminated with a blue light, and it is called the "god-wall"! In the main music hall almost every religion is represented symbolically above the stage, all signs in the House of Blues are made out of recycled wood that was collected after the hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, and all this just shows how much thought and love was put into the House of Blues. It is not only a music venue, but also a museum. It has a philanthropic organization that brings art and music lessons to schools. It supports the local economy by attracting a lot of people. It is very versatile, but the coolest thing about the House of Blues is the backstage area. It is decorated in Indian wedding dress cloth, Persian carpets and a lot of Hindu artifacts give the area a really cool groove. This area is where the backstage politics happen. Managers, artists and agents get together here to plan the next concerts or salaries, include or exclude bands from venues, and celebrate their success!

We learned how artists get to perform in venues, and how much they get paid for performing, and that connections mean everything. This experience definitely influenced me to pursue a career in the music business!


This afternoon we went to Merck, a drug research and development company. This is a 26 billion dollar company that specializes in all different kinds of drugs. It is one of two vaccine companies in the world. The company and more specifically, a group of chemists and biologists have been working on the AIDS epidemic since it first surfaced. They use three steps in order to make sure a drug is acceptable and safe. First, they administer it in tiny amounts to the target group to see if there are any negatives such as side effects. Second, the drug is given to a smaller target group in larger doses to see if it cures the illness. Lastly, it is given to a large population of the target group to get statistics and make sure it is safe. We toured the chemistry labs and the biology labs. Merck is a fascinating company that everyone in our group enjoyed, it was a great experience.

New Media 1: Cafe 939

On the first night, we went to Berklee's Cafe 939, where they hold concerts in the "Red Room". Artist Tiff Jimber and the Band "The Winter Sounds" played for us, we enjoyed the wonderful music and the environment.

We learn a lot from the experience, that the opportunity to perform is important and people have to strive for it. Successful musicians star with small event, they play not only at school but also at these Cafes and bars, so they get more known. They really put themselves out there and sell CDs, create themselves as products.

We observed that the symbiotic relationship really helps artist to be successful, such as connecting music with fashion design and marketing, so that it interests a larger grope of people, and the band would get famous faster. This is one of the most important way for artists to achieve their dreams.

It's Not a Game, It's a Franchise: Fenway Tour

After lunch with Chris Collins, we walked up the hill and across the bridge to the famous Fenway Park. We were lucky enough to have an exclusive tour of Fenway Park. We went as far as the seats on top of the green monster to as low as the antique wooden chairs looking out across the field. The seats were the oldest seats still being used in the MLB. Our tour guide was great and shared with us Fenway facts and how next year it will be 100 years old and will be considered a historical landmark, and they can not do any more major renovations to it without going through a lot of paperwork.

I have never been to Fenway Park ever, and to see it from many angles that I may never get to see was very cool! After, they brought us up to the Owner's Suite overlooking the ballpark, so I was very appreciative of being in a place I knew not many people have been and I will probably never ever be back to, unless I one day own the Boston Red Sox :)

After the tour of Fenway Park we met with Mr. Prettyman, an employee for the Red Sox Foundation, to discuss the Red Sox baseball franchise and its involvements with others.  Mr. Prettyman spoke to us about how much the Red Sox are involved in the Boston and New England communities through multiple scholarship programs, fundraisers, and promotional events.

After speaking about give-back programs that the Red Sox run, Mr. Prettyman talked to us about the size of the organization. The Red Sox are not just the baseball team that everyone knows but instead are also the owners for multiple smaller organizations like the Liverpool Soccer team and a large NASCAR team as well as many other organizations. This really opened our eyes about how influential this organization is not only in New England but across the nation and globe.

New Media 1: The Phantom Flex

We visited Rule: Boston Camera, which sells and rents camera and film equipment. At this studio/facility, they have the latest technology, and the most expensive. Rule's newest product for film was the Phantom Flex, which was a high-speed camera, which took 2,500 frames per second. This camera went for about 135,000 dollars and was capable of great film development. The films are slow motion clips of mostly filler scenes are interesting to all audiences because it did not have a specific interest except for cool and interesting clips. This camera shows what technology has in store for the future, and it gives us assurance that technology is improving and will develop to meet our needs to the fullest. Technology moves fast, and we are just experiencing everything the new technologies give us. Watch an example here.

It's Not a Game, It's a Franchise: Lunch with Chris Collins '86

For lunch on Wednesday afternoon, we went to UNO’s next to Fenway to meet Chris Collins. Chris Collins graduated from New Hampton School in 1986 and is currently a sportscaster with NECN. He gave the varsity football team a motivational speech before the Tilton game and the final championship game. He played football and baseball at New Hampton and eventually went on to play baseball at Temple University, which is a D-1 school.

We thought it would be a good insight to talk to him about being in our shoes at New Hampton and we all have the dream to play a sport in college, some in D-1. We asked him many questions: How he got to where he is now, his perspectives on playing D-1 sports, what stories he liked the most to cover as a sportscaster, and if he thought the spirit of the game has been lost from high school to college to pro? He did agree that  is D-1 sports can be like your full-time job and to really pick a college for more than just sports in case you do get injured while you are there. He did think that playing in college did give him many opportunities for job openings in the future and many connections to people which helped him land his job today.

It's Not a Game, It's a Franchise: A Visit with the Boston Blazers

Our visit with the Boston Blazer’s President/GM Doug Reffue was one of our most memorable and informative meetings. We learned how much work goes into starting a franchise. The Blazers are a team that have only existed for three years and are attempting become a part of Boston sports culture. The league that the Blazers are in is the NLL (National Lacrosse League), which is also in its beginning stages having only been around for 25 years. Because of the league's lack of money and its popularity the teams are not allowed to pay their players more than 32,000 dollars due to the salary cap. This creates many issues for the Blazers that not many other professional teams have to deal with. For instance, the Blazers have to pay attention to where their players live because of the cost of plane tickets back and forth out of Boston. The Blazers tend to want more players from around the Boston area to help cut costs. You can follow the Bosotn Blazers on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bostonblazers.

Global Voices: Interviews!!

The street interviews went well. Both groups were very active and persistent in their work. Although the questions were broad, we noticed this after the fifth person said " Wow that's a really broad question", we were still able to get some awesome responses. At first we wanted to target middle aged adults and college students, but getting kicked out of Harvard didnt help us. So we just generally looked for anyone willing to get interviewed. By the way, the group members forgot to mention that the interviewers were going to get video recorded, so several people ran away as they noticed us approaching them.

Race, Law, and Justice

Hard Time
We watched a series from National Geographic Channel called Hard Time. The series is a documentary about the life of correctional officers and inmates. The show demonstrated how people who wanted to become correctional officers through a vigorous training program. The show also showed the life style of prisoners. The episode we watched followed a prisoner who had just arrived at a prison and what happened right when you arrived.

Race, Law, and Justice

We visited Boston University and met with five third year law students who are getting ready to take the bar exam this summer. We asked the questions about law school and why they wanted to become lawyers. We talked about the criminal justice system and if it was actually flawed or not.

Our visit with the BU law students was very interesting and informing. -Kim

We all visited the law students at BU and learned many interesting things, such as the difference between a public defendant and a prosecutor! -Kyra

The BU students were enthusiastic to describe what their future occupations demand. The overall meaning of law was defined through more specifically prosecution, defense, and justice as a whole. Many different scenarios were drawn frown to explain fully what a lawyer's job is. -Maddy

The BU students were very open to share their thoughts on their positions in law. It was interesting to hear what they had to say and what their opinions were.

The experience was unreal.

The students were open and it was easy communication.

Talking with the students at BU was a great experience and I learned a lot of things that many people might not n
Know... Your innocent until proven guilty

I learned a lot of new things that will come in handy later in life....Liam

Talked with law students from BU and learned more about criminal justice system in the USA. It was an interesting conversation.

I gained a lot of advice from talking with the law students, it really put the whole Idea of racial profiling and unfair justice into prospective.

Concluding Women in Pro Sports

We have completed our research in Boston. Our group had many eventful and enlightening meetings. From our opening tour at BU with coach Derosher, to lunch with sports caster Chris Collins, to the Bruins game, concluding with an eye-opening meeting with Boston Blade's manager Paul Hendrickson. Throughout the trip our group was left with an overwhelming sense of respect for these individuals who approach their professions with an impressive work ethic. We feel lucky that all of these people took the time to meet with us, because they underscored the work that lies ahead of all female athletes. From our trip, our group became increasingly aware of the lack of publicity for women's professional leagues in the United States and the detrimental effects it has on fledgeling leagues such as the Boston Blade's. We were also able to deduce that the general public's respect for female athletics is significantly decreased due to lack of media coverage. It is now the job of all female athletes to prove to all of the doubting that female's work with extreme intensity equal to men, to achieve high caliber levels of play. Not only was this message proclaimed clearly from the professionals we met with, but also was demonstrated in the random public survey we conducted. As we spoke with people on the subway, in Faniel Hall, and throughout the city of Boston, we discovered that men's athletics are overwhelmingly more preferable to watch. Of course, this is not unexpected, but what we did find surprising were the explanations we received as to why. Interestingly, not everyone was quick to say the watched the men's game "because the men's game is more exciting." Some people spoke about the inaccessibility of viewing women's athletics. This led us to believe that there is hope for cultivating a fan base for women's athletics and increasing respect for female athletes across the nation. In reflection, female athletes should approach the challenge of increasing the popularity of their sports with excitement, because it is an opportunity rather than a burden.

Life Against Life had a great trip to Boston

Now back in school, students are reflecting on their trip to Boston. We did so much and learned a lot. We were only in Boston for 2 days but it felt much longer. We are now putting together a final project that will share what we did on our trip, what we learned, and the meaning behind what we are researching. We are very gracious that we got to visit MIT and Harvard, which is shown in the picture. We are also appreciative that we got to meet with Linda Thayer from Mass. Citizens for Life, Professor Joe Zhou at Harvard, and Professor Tracy Young-Pearse at Harvard Medical School. Our other picture shows our group with Professor Tracy Young-Pearse. Our final project will be a PowerPoint presentation, and will also have video of interviews with each of the students talking about their perspective on this issue as well as their experience.

JUA Meeting with Boston Blade's Manager

Our JUA group met with Boston Blade's manager Paul Hendrickson. He answered all of our questions and gave us an idea on how we can give back. We are now in the process of sending a letter to numerous magazines and publications in an attempt to get the Boston Blade's the media attention we feel they deserve.

Global Voices: News

Tuesday morning our group went to a newspaper stand to pick up a few different newspapers from different parts of the world. Our goal was to see the differences of what they were focusing on. Because different people in our group speak many different languages we were able to get newspapers in Italian, French, Spanish, English and Arabic although no one in the group speaks Arabic we were still able to compare cover stories and pictures. What we found was that most Newspapers covered either Japan (English French and British) or Libya (Italian and Arabic). We concluded that because stories like Japan and Libya are current and important, most newspapers were covering their stories. However the Arabic newspaper focused more on Libya which is part of the Arab world.

Science of Shopping

To the Science of Shopping group:
Matt Moulton, Connor Slover, Trang Minh Le, Louis Zhu, Sydney Frazier, Cookie Burrus, Mack Willingham, Ethan Shinn, Dave McGrath, Mike Hutchinson, Claudia Mart Llado and Nick Wright - a huge thanks for being enthusiastic, engaged and responsible. You represented New Hampton School in the best ways and I appreciate all of your work. I will see all of you at 2:30 today in Memorial Hall Classroom to complete a stellar final project.

Mr. Mundahl thanks for all of your work to make this JUA experience such an amazing one!
Mr. Buck

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy

This morning we visited the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy. The college has around 3,500 students all focused on obtaining degrees in various aspects surrounding medicine. This college makes it possible to get your degree, and then achieve a master’s degree the year after. It is composed of 40 % men and 60% women. The college is situated in the medical district of Boston and is part of the Colleges of Fenway. Some opinions on the college were how nice the dorms were, how fast you can get a masters degree, and the direct entry approach. The college has a six-year doctorate program for students wishing to pursue a doctorate in pharmacy. When applying to the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy, it is possible to directly enter this six-year program rather than have to compete against your peers in your sophomore year of college. In the doctorate program students are required to take classes in ethics and to work through real life scenarios so they are prepared to deal with difficult situations in the real world. Some of these include identifying when medications may interact and how to monitor the frequency and type of prescription a person is getting. By teaching the students this it helps to reduce the potential of people getting extra medication to sell. What surprised us was the bathroom situation in one of the dorms, there was one gender bathroom on each floor, but each floor was co-ed. You ended up having to go up or down a level in order to use the restroom. Overall, this was a very nice college visit and we learned a lot.

Mar 23, 2011

Women in Pro Sports

Today we met with the General Manager for the Boston Blades, Paul Hendrickson, the Boston Blades is the professional women;s hockey team that plays out of Boston and play in the CWHL (Canadian Women's Hockey League). He gave us a real insight to what was being done in order for the league to be more well-known everywhere. He told us that they were trying every way possible to get people to know that there was a professionals women team. He described the difficulties such as the lack of money, the lack of support, and the general public. With him we discussed ways that we could also help to get the support and to let people know that olympians are still playing. For Mr. Hendrickson he told us that their goal is to provide another chance for women to continue in sports after college and eventually pay them. He also told us that he hopes the the CWHL will keep increasing in fan base, players and teams.

Later on, the group went around subway and interviewed people. We asked them whether or not they watch men or women's sport and why they do. We also asked them how the men's game differs from the women's and what they think should be done in order for the women's sports to grow. Many people said that they watched men's sports because they were a lot faster paced and that the intensity level is a lot higher. Many also said that they would rather watch men's because there was a lot more action.

Justice & Law: Wednesday, March 23, 2011 (9:00-12:00am)

Our group visited the Suffolk County Jail where we were toured throughout the first, second, and third floor of the six story building holding 1,200 inmates in 12 separate units. The building's purpose is to maintain and detain solely men who have been accused of a crime and are waiting to defend themselves in trial. Known as a maximum level jail, the Suffolk County Jail provides a temporary home to males of all levels of criminal offenses. Something quite memorable was the jail-mate's ability to secretly chisel out shanks (prison weapons) out of nearly anything, including sporks, toothbrushes, outlet covers, and even soap. In such a lifestyle, sandwiches include two slices of bread with bologna and a possible lockdown of 23 hours per day. In conclusion, we unanimously agreed that prison life is not much of a life at all.

Justice & Law: Wednesday, March 23, 2011 (2:30-3:30)

Our group met with a public defender to discuss the statistics dealing with prison, crime, and race. Joshua, the defendant, informed us with some alarming facts such as that crime has actually decreased these past thirty years in spite of the nation's 8X increase of media coverage on crime. Race became an interesting topic, apparently many more non-caucasian individuals are accused, pulled over, etc, than Caucasians simply because of their race. In saying that, the Caucasians pulled over are more likely to have actually committed a crime. The next question was then, of course, what causes this inequality? The education, poverty, unemployment, and even racial issues in this country has for formed what the prisons look like in today's society.

Life Against Life spent their day at Harvard-Cambridge and Harvard Medical School in Boston

Today was the second day of Junior Urban Adventure. We as a group, ‘Life against Life’, went to Harvard University and met one of the stem cell researchers, Joe Zhou. He explained to us precisely what he has been doing relating to stem cell research, specifically, regeneration; actually, he said that stem cell research is the part of regeneration research because the way stem cell research is applied is rooted from regeneration. He mentioned salamanders as an example when explaining about regeneration; when the gut of salamander was cut off, it did not die but regenerated the organ. This was interesting because, one day, as the regeneration research is improved, such specialized regenerating stem cell will be applied to a human’s specific organ.

After lunch, we traveled to Harvard Medical School in Boston. We met with professor Tracy, and Christina, two doctors researching IPS on how to use adult stem cells on Alzheimer’s disease. Fist, Dr. Tracy showed us a power point presenting the research of stem cells in an overview and the contrasts between a healthy brain and a brain infected with the Alzheimer’s disease. After, we looked at an electron microscope and saw the projections of the images on a computer screen. Christina described to us what the images were showing. We asked Dr. Tracy what her point of view on embryonic stem cell research was and she said that she wasn’t against embryonic stem cell research, but that they don’t use it for Alzheimer’s disease. We learned that there are two sides to every argument.

Science of Shopping Day 2

Yesterday, the Science of Shopping group had an interview with Elyse Slayton at TJX, the overseeing company which runs off-price retailers such as TJ Max, Homegoods, and Marshall’s. She spoke with us about some common misconceptions about the companies: the products they sell are not cheaper because they have been manufactured badly or are defective, but instead because their manufacturers simply made too many for its retail stores. TJX then saves the companies the cost of these items by buying them at a lower price, and in turn, selling them to the consumer at a lower price.

This system presents an interesting problem for the advertising section of TJX. Companies like, say, Polo Ralph Lauren, will spend an entire ad campaign to justify the price of their products. While TJX  advertises how  they could sell these products at a fraction of the cost, the consumer would realize the large profit margin of these manufacturers. For this reason, Marshall’s, Homegoods and TJ Max are not allowed to state directly the products they have in stock, and instead must focus their ads on the process of TJX’s aquisitions, and allow consumer to draw their own conclusions.

But does this process work? Do the people who shop at a place like Marshalls understand how their products are available at such low prices? In order to find out, our group conducted a survey and questionnaire outside the Marshalls on Boylston Street. We wanted to conduct the survey inside of the store, but were turned down, as the manager thought that it would distract or annoy shoppers. We’re working on compiling our results, and they’ll be presented in our group’s final project.

Working in this amazing public library is fun...

Global Voices: Interview with Prof. Stone

On Tuesday afternoon we took a trip to the sociology department of Boston University. After a bit of waiting, we went upstairs to find the office of Professor John Stone, head of the sociology department at BU. We filed into his office and took our seats as he prepared to speak to us. The interview started with a couple of questions from our group members. After a few questions we quickly learned Prof. Stone's passion; examining international migrations. He did his doctoral research in South Africa examining how the racist atmosphere effected the new white immigrants. He found that they would either become racist very quickly or deny the atmosphere and hate their environment. He helped our group by answering our questions about things such as: sample size, interview questions, the effectiveness of ESL and at what age someone stops being affected by their new environments.

Gridlock: Whose Fault is it?

As we have circled around Boston asking questions about people's political interests and views, we have gotten some pretty interesting answers. For the most part, everyone we have spoken with is an active voter. The reason these people vote is because they believe it is important to keeping democracy alive in the United States. Most of the people that we have interviewed are against making it mandatory for everyone to vote, however, believe that it would be great if everyone who was eligible did vote. Some people believe it would be bad for everyone to vote because not everyone is educated on the issues. Therefore, officials would not necessarily be elected because they appeal to the majority, but maybe have just got lucky because the people who didn't know, voted for them! This was very interesting because as voter turnout seems to get smaller and smaller over the past few elections, only a small percentage of the whole are choosing our leaders. Most people seem to think this is okay. Since the people who tend to vote are the ones who care the most, they are making educated decisions that seem to be most beneficial for our future. We changed gears a little and wanted to know more about Campaign Finance and what people think about raising money for elections.

Most people seem to think that candidates are limited to those who have money. Since there are restrictions on the amount of money a person can donate, the candidates who are not rich are at a disadvantage. Furthermore, we pondered with the idea that money is speech, and if you can't have your own advertisements and commercials, the only way to help express your opinion is to support a candidate through a donation. If this is true and money is speech, then do campaign restrictions on the donation of money violate your first amendment rights, freedom of speech? This question seemed to confuse some people but as a group we decided that restrictions on donations limit the support one can provide a candidate, restricts information that may be given in areas that normally isn't, and puts poorer candidates at a disadvantage.

We also concluded that most people are not very fond of our current government. For instance, it was said that people don't run for office to make the country or their state a better place, but simply for he benefits of being a government employee. Furthermore, it seemed like our current gridlock in government is all the Republicans fault. Most people believe they are unwilling to negotiate with the Democrats and don't want to work for the people but only for the benefit of themselves. We agreed as a group that these response may have to do with the fact that we are interviewing in a very liberal state and very liberal area. However, it is no secret that people are not satisfied with our current government, but why?

Most people seemed to want to complain about the government. Saying things like, everyone is corrupt, everyone is greedy, the economy is bad, healthcare stinks, but no one had specific or detailed reason why all of these things are true. Therefore, we decided that the image the media paints for the public is usually as far as it goes. People don't take the time to find out why these things are bad, they just think they know they are bad. Without educating oneself and wanting to know why certain aspects of government struggle, our country will never be able to make informed decisions. That is all for now, more to come later!

Science of shopping-Jua

Today, our group visited NATIXIS Global Associates. NATIXIS is a Mutual Fund distribution cooperation that runs worldwide; they are basically a wholesale seller of investments. Between funds and revenues they operate a budget of approximately $900 Billion per year.  We spoke with Dan Lynch, Senior Vice President of Distribution; Chris Hunter, Vice President of the Boston branch; Susannah Wardly,  and Leslie Walstrom, both Senior Vice Presidents of Marketing, International and Domestic, respectively.

With regards to the science of shopping, they all spoke to the methods by which they convince potential buyers to utilize their firm. A personal touch is a huge factor in this sort of marketing, and everyone at Natixis aspires to know their clients as more than a name on a computer screen. After asking us all about our hobbies, Dan Lynch singled out Dave McGrath as an example: he liked to snowboard. "I would talk all about carving through deep powder, and holding an edge through the trees, and the feeling of the snow on my face," he said "and next thing you know, you would walk out with a mutual fund."

They went on to describe the difference between a factual and an emotional appeal to buyers. While most serious investors focus more heavily on the raw data of a fund's success, the emotional image of the firm still plays a huge role. This effect has, according to Chris Hunter, magnified with the economic downturn: buyers in this market want to invest in a company they feel projects an image of reliability, especially in such turbulent times. 

Later that day, we headed to TJX Companies, which operates TJ Max, Homegoods, Marshalls, and several other "off-price" retail centers, in order to examine the effect of advertising to a more tangible product. 

Is Twitter the Blog Killer?

We've been using a blog for the JUA since 2006 when the term 'social media' didn't exist, Web 2.0 was a major buzz-word and there was this brand new site invading college campuses.  At that time students producing content for the web was a pretty novel concept.

Of course now students regularly produce all kinds of content.  In my media class, for example, finding a student who doesn't have a YouTube account is rare.

That being said I wonder if the concept of blogging is waning?  Are new technologies taking over the space?  Here on the JUA we are always trying to keep ahead of the curve so I pulled up some analytics data to see how this year compared to last.  Although we are creating just as much content on the site, our blog viewership is down year-to-date:
click to see full size

 Note that today's data is obviously incomplete so we may see a bump there.

On the other hand we have seen a massive up tick in student and staff Twitter use with hundreds of tweets demonstrating excellent use of tags, photos, mentions and brand interaction.  I find this not only fascinating, but also hilarious because just last year all of my students had one of the following three responses when I told them we were going to use Twitter:
  • A) Huh? Twitter?  What's that?
  • B) I don't get it
  • C) I thought Twitter was for old people
So what do you think this means - is blogging on the way out?  What should we do next year?  let us know in the comments!

Greater Boston Food Bank

This afternoon we volunteered at The Greater Boston Food Bank. This place serves most of Massachusetts shelters with food and supplies that families need in order to survive. We volunteered with 35 other people from Dunkin Donuts, Inuit, and Ohio State. We sorted around 11,722 pounds of food, in total creating over 7,222 meals. Chip quotes,” There is no better feeling than helping feed the hungry in the great city of Boston.” We separated food into different categories, such as pasta sauce, soaps, papers, and beans, to help streamline the process for shelters this food is given to. It was a fun environment; music was playing and all of the volunteers had a great attitude. This was a great way to give back and be able to help so many people.

Hello House

This morning we went to the Hello House, an all men substance abuse rehabilitation center in the heart of Boston. The men there are there willingly, mainly between 20-50 years old. The program is based around the 12 steps of the AA (alcoholics anonymous) program. Whitey, the main counselor at the program, he is a recovering alcoholic who bases his program around overcoming alcoholism. Some points that really hit home with our group were the 12 steps and how detailed they were, Whitey and his story, the process of the program, and how ranged the ages of the men there were. The program has a pretty high success rate, most of the men who go through this program come out sober and with more knowledge of their addiction. The program made sure that the patients could live on their own, by making them find jobs, teaching them relapse preventions, and taking care of the house. The workers at the Hello House were determined to help the patients, even if they relapsed over and over again “We don’t give up on them” said Whitey.

Inside the JUA: The Science of Shopping

What is the JUA all about?  This short video walks you through what a typical day on the JUA might be like on the Science of Shopping group!

Many thanks to Mack who made this video during the free time block!

Mar 22, 2011

Women's Inequality in Athletics

Our group is focused on investigating the differences in opportunities for men and women in athletics. Today our group went to Boston University to meet with Coach Deroucher and discuss what resources the college provides the athletics, and also compare resources between men and women. What we found out that the university treats both sides equally yet they can't really compensate for the difference in fan base and public interest in the sport and for that reason their facilities are different. Coach Deroucher emphasized the positive impact that Title 9 had on the university and role in women's athletics. He said that today Boston University has reached higher standard of equality in women's sport because of Title 9. Coach Deroucher had a very good perspective for us, since he coached both mens and women's and gave us an insight to how they were different and similar.

Later on in the day we met with New Hampton Alumni and former Temple Baseball player Chris Collins. Mr. Collins is now a prominent New England sports caster. We used Mr.Collins knowledge to help us understand why women's sport are not as highly televised as mens sports. From what he said we gathered that traditions playa role in fan base and the public is more perceptive to watching mens sports because of the higher intensity level. He left us with a challenge as female athletes to better our own sports by increasing our own intensity through hard work and perseverance.

To finish off the day, the group went to the Bruins vs Devils game. Surprisingly for a Tuesday night the game was packed. We went off with face paint bruins shirts and everyone made it on the jumbotron. The Bruins ended up winning 4-1. The Game was filled with energy and excitement and by the end none of us had any voice left.

A Sporting Day: It's Not a Game, It's a Franchise

Our group was looking at how sports and society comes to together and questioned the benefits we gain from sports. We will look at college, pro, and high school club teams. First we gathered in the lobby of the hotel to go over the plans of the day, decided our questions, and we were ready to go.  We traveled on the T to South Station to grab a bite to eat. South Station looked like smaller version of New York’s Grand Central Station. It was cool to see with all the different shops, places to eat, and a huge board with changing train times and arrivals.

After that, we walked to Metro Lacrosse’s office in Seaport to volunteer our time with all the new equipment that got shipped to them today. Metro Lacrosse is a non-profit organization that provides free equipment to kids around the Boston area who participate in their lacrosse program. One group screwed on brand new heads to new shafts, organized cones and body pads, and counted and organized helmets. It was great to help out this company as most of them are volunteers and do it for the love of the kids.

Then, we took the T again to go Northeastern University. There we met Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach Pat Duquette, who gave us a tour of the athletic facility and gave us a great inside view of a coach’s perspective on recruiting. He also answered the question of how he recruits. He said that coaches recruit different but for them, they look for the overall person who has a good attitude that can help their team to succeed along with their great talent. It was a good comparison from a non-profit organization and a high big D-1 college where they help develop young athletes for the love of the game and they could possibly send them to a college where the game could possible turn into a “job." It was interesting to see the different opinions of people of whether or not they thought the real spirit and love of the game has been lost. And for the most part, they thought it has not but it isn’t for everyone to play at a D-1 level because it basically turns into your job.

Lastly, we walked across campus to the office of Sports in Society and met with the Executive Director Dan Lebowitz. He was a former body builder and had a great insight on how he worked for what he had and worked his way up to where he is today from a poor background and being disabled as a youth. The goal of the company is to use sports as a means to create social change. He also works with the MIAA to teach a curriculum of sports leadership to 50 high school athletes to later have them teach the middle school kids about anti-bullying and good leadership skills. He feels strongly about showing good qualities through role models in sports and praises those athletes in their Athletic Hall of Fame. He gave us great insight on our future college careers and words that we will always remember.

MIT was great and Korean food was tasty!

After getting lunch, the Life against Life group was able to meet with Linda from Mass. Citizens for Life at the hotel. It was a very informative meeting and was great to get a perspective on stem cells from an organization that is pro-life. After our meeting we quickly walked to MIT to take a tour of the campus. We were able to check out some of the academic buildings as well as some of the athletic facilities on campus. The tour took about an hour and a half. For dinner, our group ate at the Koreana Restaurant, a Korean BBQ restaurant where they cooked in front of us. It was a cool experience. Afterwards, we went to Fanuel Hall to get some ice cream and do some shopping. Tomorrow we look forward to spending the day at Harvard Stem Cell Institute.

Shifting Gears

Now that it's evening we'll see groups shifting gears from learn mode to reflect mode.  You'll see more blog posts shortly as groups reflect on the day and post.

Also folks will shortly be heading out for dinner and fun activities in their group.  Lots of smiling kids and great stories of experiences today.

Are we informed?

The major issues presented were government spending and campaign findings. The group goal was to find out if people were educated on the issues. We wanted to know if the government is in a gridlock due to major issues such as, the polarized views of the Democrats and the republicans, government spending in the 2011 fiscal year. Today we interviewed people in Boston and presented them with questions to see different points of view on the topic. We will visit the State House to find more information about these issues.

New Media Two: First Impressions

Mr. York's New Media group is excited for what is coming ahead in the next two days. After arriving in Boston, we explored the area around the hotel. After checking out some street art and local cafes, we settled down for lunch on the MIT campus. We're all looking forward to learning more about the new creation, One brand One band, and later in the night we will check out a show in the Berkelee campus area.

Overall we're looking forward to a exciting few days! We'll check back in soon with our impressions of the upcoming events.

Our First Meeting for Life Against Life

Unfortunately, we were not able to meet with our speaker from Mass. Citizens for Life, but we worked as a group and researched their website. Some interesting points we found are there are four kinds of stem cells: embryonic, germ, adult, and umbilical cord cells. People who are Christians generally only oppose research with embryonic stem cells. Mass. Citizens for Life is the largest group in the state and have pushed multiple laws through the state and country legislative system. One of these laws include females under the age of 18 being required to get a parental consent for abortion. Lastly, Mass. Citizens for Life favors research with adult stem cells because they have the ability to copy into mature cells whereas embryonic do not.

On our minds

As the students head out into the city they probably have many things on their minds.  Thoughts right now are ranging from questions about their topic, the first speaker they will be meeting with & maybe where they will stop for lunch!

So now is a good chance to ask you, dear blog reader, what is on the top of your mind?  What questions do you have about the JUA?  What kind of content would you like to see?

Let us know what you are thinking about by clicking on the 'comment' button below!

Justice & Law: Monday Night

We are all geared up and ready for an exciting first day in Boston.  We will be meeting law students from Boston University starting tomorrow afternoon, followed by a tour of the Suffolk County Jail on Wednesday and an interview with a public defender.

Mar 21, 2011

First Night with group.

We are still at NHS, this is our first serious meeting as a group, we are missing three students. Tonight we decided that we are all going to get out of our comfort zones on this trip and have a GREAT time. We have a great group and are excited for the trip. We are going on two exciting visits tomorrow and are all prepared with our jobs for the day tomorrow. Although 7am is going to be an early morning our excitement of the days ahead learning about the science of shopping will get us going in the morning. We are ready to go!

New Media

Do you need to have millions of dollars and connections in LA to make a hit series anymore? In a world of file sharing how do young musicians make any money? New media has brought new opportunities and new problems for creative artists.

In our Junior Urban Adventure we will meet with Kyle York of 1band 1brand, a business that supports and connects independent artists. We will talk with independent artists and visit Café 939, a venue for artists operated by Berklee College of Music. We will visit Rule and participate in a hands-on Learning Lab using the Phantom Flex, a revolutionary high-speed digital camera. A college tour of Berklee or Emerson, and a “give-back” to the independent artist community will round out our trip.

Global Perspectives

Tomorrow our group is heading to Boston to investigate how a person's worldview is shaped by their background and heritage. In addition to conducting interviews with visitors and residents of Boston we will also be meeting with Professor Stone of Boston University, visiting Chinatown, investigating different cultures at the Museum of Fine Arts, and collecting newspapers from around the globe.

In the 21st century it is more important than ever for citizens to have a global perspective when thinking about how their actions and the actions of their governments can influence people around the world. Tomorrow will be another step along the journey towards greater cultural awareness.

Weather related issues on 3/21

Hi folks - as you know there is a bit of bad weather right now in New Hampton that is causing some travel delays.  Here is where we stand overall:
  • We are still planning an 8:30pm meeting in the Master Classroom tonight
  • We are still planning to board buses tomorrow by 7:30am behind the gym (see the full schedule to the right for more details)
If you are a boarding student returning to campus tonight and you are running late please do your best to stay safe and make it to the meeting tonight.  It's okay to arrive late, just come over to the Master Classroom once you get back to campus.

If you are a day student and you are unable to make it to the meeting tonight due to hazardous travel conditions please see below.
  • Please make arrangements to be on campus at 7:00am Tuesday so you can check in with your group leader and board your assigned bus by 7:30am
  • Please review the packing list in the student resources section to make sure you have everything you need
  • We will not be able to check in to the hotel immediately upon our arrival, please be prepared wearing what you need to wear and with everything you need for the day in a separate bag from your suitcase, your suitcase will be stored in a secure location until we are ready to check in
  • Please review the Code of Conduct.  Failure to follow these guidelines will result in swift action for you and possibly also your roommates in the hotel
If you are a day student wishing to stay the night on campus you may do so with the permission of the dorm head.

Any student who will be unable to make it to the meeting tonight (or who will be late) should also contact their group leader to make sure they will be prepared for tomorrow.

Many thanks - and please stay safe!  We look forward to seeing everyone soon.

Mar 20, 2011

Are You Ready!?

Welcome back everyone - here at the JUA we're very excited that the moment has finally arrived when we are about to head to Boston with you for the 2010-2011 Junior Urban Adventure!

Groups have already started blogging about where they are going and what they will be doing and you will be able to stay tuned here for all the latest and greatest throughout the program.  Most groups will be posting 2-3 times a day during the trip!

If you would like to follow along with the program even closer you can search the tag #NHSJUA on Twitter or just check out the feed over on the right sidebar.  I expect groups to be tweeting dozens of times a day, so that will be a fun way to keep up to date.

The JUA is our urban experiential learning project and we think it's a pretty compelling way to learn and experience interesting subjects together.  If you need a quick overview of the program this is probably a good place to start.

Welcome back - and here we go!

Mar 16, 2011

Business of Sports

As countless fans of the National Football League wait for an outcome in discussions between the Players Association and owners (see story in New Yorker), it is an ideal time for a group of New Hampton School students to consider the state of sports given the amount of money that is at stake. Whether it is the NFL or the NCAA (watch ESPN Outside the Lines on the exploitation of college athletes), there are countless stories in the news that force us to confront this question: 

"Has the spirit of athletics been lost with the corporate takeover of professional sports, the mercenary philosophy of big-time college athletics, the exorbitant price of taking a family to a game, the fanaticism of the media and the behavior of fans as well as athletes."

Yes, the behavior of fans. Read in this ESPN story about the lawyer wrapped up in the scandal at Ohio State and take a moment to consider the intersection of sports, money, and delusional behavior. So we're in the final stages of planning for our migration to Boston for a visit to Fenway Park and the offices of the Boston Red Sox, Northeastern University's Sport in Society Foundation, Metro Lacrosse, the Boston Blazers Indoor Lacrosse team, and a meet-up with CSN New England sports personality Chris Collins, a 1986 graduate of New Hampton School. 

Mar 4, 2011

Stem Cell Research in Boston

On this JUA trip, our group Life against Life, is going to investigate both sides of the hot topic of stem cell research. To do so we have set up meetings with Harvard Medical professors at their Stem Cell Institute, as well as setting up a meeting with a pro life educator, and finally visiting MIT’s medical research facilities. We are looking forward to learning the whole story, the pros and cons of stem cell research and, how in the near future someone we know, or how we could be saved by the research that is going on right now. We are also excited about touring MIT and Harvard.

Is it equal?

On June 23, 1972, Congress passed Title IX, a ground breaking decision which outlawed discrimination based on sex in any educational program or activity receiving federal funding. Now, in 2011, has this monumental act of congress changed the game for women? Currently, how are women perceived in athletics? Are there physical limitations involved, could we do a better job offering equal opportunities from a developmental perspective, or is it even possible to sustain professional athletics for women? On March 22nd, Erin Moran, Anna Menke, Mariele Chambers, Jenny Currie, Liz Elcock, Taylor Huyck, Katie Koenig, Nicole Magee, and Jackie Mazur will head down to the Sports Hub of the nation to attempt to answer these questions and many more! The visit will include stops to Boston University, the Boston Bruins, and the Boston Blades of the CWHL. Keep following for more updates!

This Pill Will Make You Feel Better

Modern medicine has transformed health in the world: we live longer and more productive lives. Yet even as medicines have improved our lives they have shown us the dark side of human nature. Prescription drug abuse, illegal drug use and crime are all closely related. This group will examine the technologies that lead to the production of new medicines and also explore issues related to their misuse. Our group members are Jay Baek, Raymond Boly, AnneMarie Fana, Tanner Klock, Scott Miller, Steph Myers, Chip Nolan and Danya Gordin. We will be touring Merck and the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy just to name a few places!

Mar 3, 2011

Twitter 101

Hi folks, we are going to be using Twitter during the JUA to invite parents, teachers and friends to join us as we go about our program in Boston. We will even be able to see what other groups are doing while we are out and about.

To view our Twitter stream you don't even need to have an account! I've embedded the feed for #NHSJUA over on the right sidebar there.

If you want to tweet along with us you will need a Twitter account and a cell phone with a text message plan. Please note that although Twitter doesn't cost anything standard text messaging rates do apply. Don't join in on Twitter if you don't have an unlimited (or very large) text messaging plan on your phone!

To get started check out this tutorial video and let me know if you have any questions:

A good tweet is short (140 characters or less), honest but appropriate, thoughtful and avoids slang and text message speak. For example, "omg lol that was crazy" isn't a great tweet while, "About to visit with the Business School at Harvard!" is a fantastic!

Science of Shopping

The Science of Shopping group is off to a good start. Roles have been assigned and students should be emailing our senior leader, Connor Slover, 3 essential questions before friday. We have an appointment on March 22nd at Natixis Global Investments on Boylston street to talk about marketing. We are waiting to hear from the Head of Marketing at Marshals for a meeting on teh 23rd. Everyone is looking forward to a well deserved break!  

Feb 28, 2011

Group Meetings This Week

Hi folks - there are several JUA group meetings this week.  Here's what we'll be up to:

Class Meeting Tuesday, March 1
  • Review purpose of the JUA
  • Review your planned agenda
  • Group work: Formulate guiding questions, consider final project
  • To Do: What should you do during free time?
  • To Check: Did everyone sign up for a roommate?
Adviser Meeting Thursday, March 3
  • Review dates of JUA
  • Review packing list
  • Review code of conduct, safety & assessment guidelines
  • Group work: Research and prepare for interviews, decide on group roles
  • To Do: Make first blog post
  • To Check: Any travel issues we don’t already know about?
Also look for first blog posts from groups this week!

Feb 8, 2011

Topic Areas

Check out the topics we think we will be studying this year.  Ideas are still coming in so I'll post updates here as I get them.

Women in Pro Sports (NEW)
Mr. Churchill
Why aren’t there more female pro sports teams? Are we as a society biased against the female athlete? This group will explore the issue of female pro sports, girls athletic programs, and the business that is pro-athletics. Students interested in women’s sports, gender fairness and combating sexism might be interested in this group.

Global Voices (NEW)
Mr. Fisk
Americans (even open minded and worldly Americans) see the world from a certain point of view.  This point of view is rooted in western values, christian beliefs, the English language, and dominant economic and cultural perspectives.  But the world is a vastly more diverse place.  This group will explore our cultural biases, dig deep into several different cultural traditions and reflect how our history informs our world view.  Students interested in other cultures and languages or students who just like to meet new people and talk about new ideas might be interested in this group.

The Science of Shopping (Revised Description)
Mr. Buck
Did you know that marketers position the shopping season’s most hyped toys at child eye level on store shelves? Did you know that budget shortfalls in many districts are forcing schools to allow marketing inside classrooms?  If the price is $89.00 isn't that the same thing as $90?  This group will explore the power of marketing to affect how and what we buy and what (or who) is really being sold. Students interested in marketing, business and media awareness might be interested in this group.

Life Against Life
Ms. Kang
What if you were told a life saving treatment was available for you or someone in your family but Federal law prevented the treatment from being developed? Stem cell research is a controversial debate: should humans ‘play God’ when determining who lives and doesn’t live? If stem cells can cure cancer and other diseases why aren’t we exploring this treatment to the fullest? Students interested in careers in medicine, science or who enjoy discussing ethics might be interested in this group.

Mr. Kozens
Every day in the news we hear stories about how our government is polarized, gridlocked and unable to take care of ‘Main Street’ but are these stories really true, or is this just more political rhetoric? This group will explore the political system in the United States from the Democrats to the Republicans and even the Tea Party. Students who are interested in politics, careers in government or who want to better understand how the American democracy works might be interested in this group.

It’s not a Game it’s a Franchise
Mr. McCulloch
Pro sports is a multi-billion dollar industry in the United States with the top players making millions of dollars a game. How has the media attention, high financial stakes and focus on star players changed the games we love? Aren’t sports about trying your best and playing fair no matter if you win or loose? This group will explore how big business has changed athletics, what it does to individual players and what we can do about it. Students who are interested in careers in sports management, business or enjoy sports might be interested in this group.

This Pill Will Help You Feel Better
Ms. Lane
Modern medicine has transformed health in the world: we live longer and more productive lives. Yet even as medicines have improved our lives they have shown us the dark side of human nature. Prescription drug abuse, illegal drug use and crime are all closely related. This group will examine the technologies that lead to the production of new medicines and also explore issues related to their misuse. Students interested in careers in medicine, science or who care about reversing the issue of drug abuse might be interested in this group.

Race, Justice and Law
Ms. Frame
Why do young black men make up a much greater proportion of people in prison than any other demographic? Is the justice system in the United States biased against minorities? This group will explore the system of justice in America and explore issues of fairness and racial profiling. Students interested in careers in law, government or who are interested in social justice might find this group interesting.

New Media
Mr. York & Ms. Wilson
Do you need to have millions of dollars and connections in LA to make a hit series any more? In a world of file sharing how do young musicians make any money? New media has brought new opportunities and new problems for creative artists. This group will explore the artists, labels and venues seeking to capitalize on the new media landscape. Students interested in careers in music, film, or new media might be interested in this group.