Young Observers: Early October Edition

Fun and spirited. This was the overall vibe that kept over 300 student leaders from eight high schools across the Fullerton Joint Union High School District (FJUHSD) engaged throughout the symposium held a week ago at the Sonora High School gymnasium. The DJ and the inter-school competitive performances showcasing school spirit, both new additions to this year’s program, were instrumental to the soaring energy level of aspiring leaders. However, students also shared their disappointment at not getting the chance to be paired with their counterparts in similar positions from other schools such as, putting all activities commissioners in one group so they can learn from each other’s best practices.

Every year, over 700 events are managed by the FJUHSD Associated Student Body (ASB). These school events range from Back-To-School orientation, School Assemblies, Homecoming, Stag, Prom to spirit days, remembrances, and other celebrations. Student leaders from 9th through 12th grade, who have earned their spot as ASB commissioners or members through grade level elected cabinet positions or through a screening process, are behind all these events in every high school across FJUHSD. With hardly any professional experience in leadership, these student leaders are automatically enrolled in an elective course called ASB to learn how they can be effective in their roles. Part of this training is the annual fellowship with ASB students from the eight schools across FJUHSD.

Each symposium comes with a theme and this year’s theme was I.M.P.A.C.T. (involvement, memories, pride, alliance, connectivity, and togetherness) which encapsulates the goal of the symposium. The program included pep talks from guest speakers, team games like the popular “Red Light, Green Light” game from Squid Game, bonding sessions fueled by icebreaker questions or top discussion questions, and spirit competitions filled with school chants and choreographed battles. At the end of the conference, all ASB students were awarded a shirt and the option to have it signed by fellow participants as a memento of Symposium to look back on. Below is feedback from students across the eight schools in FJUHSD:

“We should have more games to allow students to get to know each other rather than just through group discussions.”

—Hailey, Sunny Hills

“The speaker inspired me to focus on the ‘good 98% and not on the bad 2%’ to keep the students engaged.”

—Abigail, Fullerton

“This year’s symposium inspired me to be more thoughtful on the things I do and to try to see them from a different perspective.”

—Jeremiah, La Habra

“Some students woke up as early as 6am, and did not have time to eat breakfast, so maybe some snacks might help during breaks. Overall, the symposium was fun. It inspired me to try the best practices I learned from other schools to increase the rate of students’ engagement in my school.”

—Jessie, Buena Park

“It is reassuring to know that our struggle with spirit days is shared by the rest of the ASBs from other schools. I would like to have discussions with ASB members in a similar position. For example, I am an interclub commissioner, and I would love to hear how other ASB commissioners organize their club rush.”

—Sky, Troy

“This year’s symposium definitely went through an upgrade. Even the guest speaker thought that this is the first time he has seen this event as spirited as it was. I enjoyed the DJ who brought lots of energy to the event. It would be worth considering a DJ not just for school dance but even for assemblies. I am currently serving as Elections commissioner. I have concerns about keeping the integrity of school elections and was looking forward to hearing from fellow commissioners of other schools, but I did not have as much opportunity to bring this up compared to last year’s symposium.”

—Francine, Sunny Hills

“Make smaller groups because some groups were huge making it hard for everyone to have the chance to talk and encourage diverse grouping because some people tend to stick with students from their school.”

—Ashley, Sunny Hills

“We need to have more efficient lunch lines because some students were only receiving their meals while the rest have already finished eating their lunch.”

—Lauren, Sonora

“Devote more time for small group discussions.”

—Avery, Sonora

Finally you came back

I’ve missed

sweaters and jackets

Summer forbade me to wear

I’ve missed

warming up my fingers

when they turn frail in the cold

I’ve missed the bubbly feeling

when my birthday is around the corner

I’ve missed stomping

on all the crunchy leaves

To sum it up,

I’ve missed you Fall

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Endangered Animal Trivia

Q: What happened to the Spix’s Macaw?

A: Up until 1986, the Spix’s Macaw was considered extinct, until they were spotted. Then in the mid-1990s, only a single individual remained alive in the wild, a male. In 2019, the International Union for Conservation of Nature officially declared the Spix’s Macaw extinct in the wild. There are now only 160 Spix’s Macaws left in captivity.

After a long time of waiting, the month of October has finally arrived, and with it comes the dawn of fall. Autumn leaves begin to fall off of trees, and a chill breeze begins to pick up everywhere you go. Everyone seems to feel more at peace and calm in October for these reasons. However, the month of October is important for another reason. Every year around this time, Breast Cancer Awareness Month is observed. Breast cancer is a severe form of cancer that develops mostly in females and, like almost all other cancers, is quite dangerous to the human body. On average, around 266,000 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed yearly, and about 43,000 die.

Breast Cancer Awareness month has been created to share information and educate people. It is also held to gain peoples’ support and raise money to aid in research and help find ways to cure it. One way that you can support Breast Cancer Awareness Month is by donating money to this cause. Another way is by volunteering or participating in fun recreational activities that support breast cancer. For example, the American Cancer Society hosts the “Relay for Life” movement. This program encourages survivors, caregivers, and other participants to start a movement for a cancer-free future by starting fundraisers and spreading awareness. UC Irvine is hosting a series of runs and walks to raise money for breast cancer research. You can both exercise and show your support at the same time. Finally, you can simply wear something pink. Whether it is a pink bracelet or a full-on pink outfit, you can raise awareness by showing off your style. When I play baseball in October, my team will be offering pink eyeblack. Wearing pink is a great way to spread awareness.

From Beauty and the Beast to Cruella, for the past few years Walt Disney Pictures has routinely turned fan-favorite childhood animations into live action adaptations. Its most recent announcement introduced The Little Mermaid remake, set to debut in U.S. theaters on May 26, 2023. But following that reveal, Disney had one more surprise to share with its fans — Black singer and actress Halle Bailey was confirmed to play the lead role of Ariel. While the news did spark internet outrage and debates over the lead actor’s race, others have expressed positive responses, celebrating Bailey’s success and a revision in Hollywood representation. In addition to the lead role, Disney invited a diverse cast and crew including Black singer and actor Daveed Diggs, Latinx producer Lin-Manuel Miranda and Asian American actress Awkwafina. Although the controversy surrounding these actors — particularly Bailey — elicited bigoted remarks and criticism, the upcoming film has also received much publicity and support. So “surf” the web and continue to keep a “lookout” for this much-anticipated “fin”-tasy film.

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  1. I always learn so much from the young writers featured in the Observer. Great job to all and to longtime editor Francine!