The Advocate http://theacademyadvocate.com The Student News Site of Albuquerque Academy Fri, 07 Feb 2020 06:16:37 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.3.2 What’s Going on in Iran? (a story about USA and Iran) http://theacademyadvocate.com/3229/news/whats-going-on-in-iran-a-story-about-usa-and-iran/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3229/news/whats-going-on-in-iran-a-story-about-usa-and-iran/#respond Wed, 05 Feb 2020 17:59:58 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/?p=3229 It seemed overnight that fears blew up over possible draft letters being sent out to enlist Americans into World War III. A frenzy of online outcry and memes responded to a sudden inflammation of the long-simmering conflict between Iran and the United States, starting on January 3rd. The real conflict was induced by an American missile strike that killed an Iranian war hero, General Qasem Suleimani. The decision for the bombing was a retaliation for the attack on the US embassy in Baghdad, carried out by a Iraqi militia group serving as a proxy for the Iranian government. The Pentagon claimed that Suleimani orchestrated attacks on American service members and diplomats over his many years of service. On January 8th, in retaliation for the assassination, Iran fired more than a dozen ballistic missiles at two Iraqi air bases that house U.S. soldiers. The US government initially claimed there were no injuries in the attacks, but later revised that statement, acknowledging that 50 US troops were injured, though none were killed.
This marks another deterioration of relations with Iran. Tensions had been simmering after President Trump withdrew from a nuclear deal with Iran and several other world powers in 2018. America’s withdrawal from the deal follows President Trump’s stringent policy of crippling economic sanctions. In response to this withdrawal, Iran has deliberately violated some terms of the agreement, announcing after the Suleimani assassination that it will no longer have any restrictions on Uranium enrichment and the number of centrifuges built, increasing the possibility of a nuclear armed Iran. President Trump warned that the United States had 52 significant targets if Iran chooses to escalate the conflict further.
The history between the United States and Iran has always been contentious. Starting at the end of World War II, Iran was targeted for its vast oil reserves. In conflict with increasing Arab nationalism, the CIA covertly staged a coup in 1953, bringing the Shah to power and instituting an Iranian government sympathetic to the U.S. Anti-American sentiment boiled over in the Iranian Revolution of 1979, when Ayatollah Khomeini ousted the Shah. Khomeini’s plan was to create an Islamist nationalist state without foreign intervention, which led to the Iran hostage crisis in 1979. In a series of escalations, the U.S. broke all ties with Iran, banned American exports to the country, and set sanctions. These sanctions were lifted under United Nations deal in exchange for the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons in 2015.
In response to the retaliatory bombings, there was internal backlash in Congress. On January 8th, a White House briefing on the reasoning behind the airstrike left many in Congress angry. This led to many hypothetical responses with the House planning to vote to limit Mr. Trump’s war-making authority, and Democrats are moving forward with a measure that would require the cession of all military action in Iran. All of these policies have taken a back seat in lieu of the impeachment trial, and in its wake, tensions seem to have subsided as both sides have expressed their willingness to de-escalate the conflict.

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Academy Alumna Changes the World http://theacademyadvocate.com/3218/news/academy-alumna-changes-the-world/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3218/news/academy-alumna-changes-the-world/#respond Tue, 28 Jan 2020 16:31:53 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/?p=3218   In 2000, Elizabeth Keller Kistin-Keller graduated from Albuquerque Academy, returning five years later to give a graduation speech and telling the class of 2005 this: “While living in southern Mexico for a few months one summer my host mother Juana Manzano constantly reminded me that: lo más importante no es dónde sino cómo vamos—the most important thing, she said, was not where, but how we go.” Now working at Sandia Labs and married to Mayor Tim Keller, Kistin-Keller remains an active voice in the Albuquerque community. While Kistin-Keller has certainly made her place in our community, how did she get to where she is today? Sitting with me in Flying Star to discuss Albuquerque’s politics as well as her own accomplishments is Dr. Kistin-Keller. 

Kistin-Keller begins by telling me about her life at the Academy. Part of the soccer team, The Advocate writing staff, the Speech and Debate team, and an active participant in the Experiential Education program, she was a busy and engaged member of the Academy community. “I think part of what I really loved when I was a student there was the opportunity to try so many different things,” Kistin-Keller tells me. “It felt like you weren’t limited.” Following her graduation in 2000, Kistin-Keller attended the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill as a Morehead-Cain Scholar, providing her with a four-year merit scholarship, where she earned her B.A. in political science and Latin American studies. Thereafter, she earned her Ph. D at Oxford University in International Development Studies as a Rhodes Scholar. “I had been lucky in high school and in undergrad to have opportunities to be living and working abroad and took advantage of them every time I got them.”

After finishing her schooling, Kistin-Keller worked in South Africa on a global water conflict and cooperation project. One of the important aspects of working on this project, Kistin-Keller tells me, is being able to work with many different types of people. “You may have one lever or a couple of levers that you control, but if you’re actually going to make progress on the issue, you have to be able to build partnerships. You have to be able to bring folks together.” 

Bringing folks together, it seems, is Kistin-Keller’s philosophy whether she is managing her family responsibilities, engaging in politics, working on global projects, or leading projects targeting issues in the local community. As First Lady of Albuquerque, Kistin-Keller certainly plays a role in the political climate of our city. 

I asked her about two of the most pressing concerns in our city: youth education and incarceration. Indeed, when it comes to the youth of Albuquerque, Kistin-Keller focuses on community and collaboration. In response to growing concerns surrounding the state of the Albuquerque education system, she tells me that the key to taking the right steps to solve this problem lies in one word: partners. “I think the city has tried to work really closely with partners from the early childhood education, and we run a couple of the early childhood education centers, so [we] are invested as a service provider ourselves. But all of these programs require really close partnerships with other providers, with APS, with the universities that are around.” 

Image Credit: Lindsay Hartsock ’00

When asked about the issue of the increased juvenile incarceration rates in Albuquerque, (227 per 100,000 in NM as opposed to the average 138 per 100,000 in 2017), Kistin-Keller smiles and begins animatedly telling me about a local organization that is working to help solve this. “One of the groups that I’ve been just totally blown away by is a group called Youth Connect. Lots of them [the staff] grew up here in Albuquerque.” Youth Connect is an organization that works to help youth in the city through enrichment programs geared towards both Academic and Extracurricular success. “What they [Youth Connect] recognized, having done some analysis, is that there was a gap. We had good programming for younger kids and all the way up into middle school, and there was this huge gap between what we were actually doing for folks in high school. We as a city don’t control time during the school day, but one of the things that that the mayor is committed to is working through a city government but through a whole community approach.” That is, the city government is looking to fund educational enrichment programs for all grade levels, with a focus on high schoolers.

Nevertheless, as involved as Kistin-Keller is in the public landscape of Albuquerque, “this city part of my life is just one tiny slice of what I do,” she tells me. Kistin-Keller also maintains her career as a complex systems analyst at Sandia Labs where, among other things, she leads the Strategic Future Program. “Part of my job is helping folks imagine, what the world might look like in 15-20 years in terms of intersections between emerging technologies, changing global dynamics, and changes in institutions, demographics, and politics. How do those pieces fit together to influence how we prepare, how we adapt?” One of her favorite aspects of working at Sandia Labs, she tells me, is “the chance to do work that matters on a global scale.” Her job allows her to work in powerful settings and engage with many different types of people. “It’s dynamic work and I get to work with some just fascinating people both inside and outside of the lab system, which to me is really energizing.”

As she balances her roles as a scientist, the first lady, and a mom to two young kids, she credits a “village of folks who makes it all possible.” “It’s caused both Tim and I to think about what it means to balance professional lives, public service, and parenting,” she tells me, “We’re grateful to do that in the place where we grew up and also extremely grateful to be able to do that with the people who raised us and now get to spend so much time with our kids as well.” Whether in her personal life or in her work life, Kistin-Keller never loses sight of the meaning of community and incorporates this into every aspect of her life.

As we wrap up our conversation, Kistin-Keller leaves me with advice for the Albuquerque youth. “We have the power to do some real work right here, right now, that can make a difference. I think it is important to never lose sight of that and to never get so bogged down with whatever the climate is right now. Let’s not lose sight of what it means to have that real power to change and to help make change.”

 

 

 

 

        

        

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

        

        

 

 

 

 

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College Football Playoff Recap http://theacademyadvocate.com/3213/sports/college-football-playoff-recap/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3213/sports/college-football-playoff-recap/#respond Tue, 28 Jan 2020 13:12:24 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/?p=3213 After months of battling it out on the football field, two teams, ironically both represented by the same mascot, had their chance to become the 2020 National Champions. In the playoff tournament, four of the strongest teams come head to head, fighting for the national championship title. This year, the Louisiana State Tigers, the Ohio State Buckeyes, the Clemson Tigers, and the Oklahoma Sooners filled up those four spots. Louisiana State Tigers had a very smooth entrance into the final game, elected as the number one seed, ending the regular season as the only undefeated team left. On the other hand, Clemson had a more difficult time making their way into the final match. They were seeded third, which is one of the most difficult positions to come back from as the first seed is put up against the fourth and the second is put up against the third. That meant they had to face Ohio State, one of the frontrunners along with LSU. This game ended in Clemson’s favor, led by Trevor Lawrence, sending them to the final game. Tigers vs Tigers.
Even before the championship game started, LSU was the heavy favorite. During the first quarter, the score was 7-7, no one was dominating the field at that point in the game, with Clemson scoring the first touchdown. However, the rest of the game was dominated by LSU, particularly by quarterback and Heisman Trophy Winner, Joe Burrow. After 3 more touchdowns by LSU in the second quarter, one of which by Burrow the halftime score was 28-17. The rest of the game was no different; LSU scored two more touchdowns in the second half, resulting in a final score of 42-25.

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Impeachment Update http://theacademyadvocate.com/3207/news/impeachment-update/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3207/news/impeachment-update/#comments Tue, 28 Jan 2020 12:59:37 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/?p=3207 On Wednesday, December 18, the House of Representatives, controlled by the Democratic Party, voted to pass two articles of impeachment against President Trump. These articles allege that the President abused his presidential power and obstructed Congress from conducting their investigation. The first charge states that President Trump withheld 391 million dollars of congressionally approved aid from Ukraine in exchange for an investigation into a political rival, a power not given to the president in the Constitution. Democrats argue that the President did this in order to coerce Ukraine to investigate democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. During a phone call on July 25, President Trump encouraged Ukrainian President, Volodymr Zelensky, to start an investigation into Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden, despite no evidence of corrupt activities on either of the Bidens’ parts, and despite the US Intelligence community’s near universal belief that Russia, not Ukraine, poses a threat to US election security. The second charge is based on President Trump’s lack of cooperation with the House’s inquiry by ignoring subpoenas for documents, and blocking testimonies from White House aides. This violates the internal system of checks and balances between the branches of government outlined in the Constitution.

The President and his administration have repeatedly denied these charges, and when the articles were voted upon on December 18, the House voted along party lines. With Republicans opposing impeachment and Democrats in favor of it, the first article, abuse of power, was passed 230 to 197. All Republicans, as well as two Democrats, voted against the charge. The second article passed similarly with 228 Democrats and one Independent voting in favor of the article and 195 Republicans and three Democrats voting against it. With the House voting in favor of both articles, the trial was passed on to the Senate. The impeachment trial began in the Senate on January 16 and has yet to finish.

As according to Article 1, Section 3 of the Constitution, the presiding officer of the trial is the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, John Roberts. The prosecution is led by seven house managers chosen for their experience and racial, economic, and geographic diversity. These members are Adam Schiff (D-Ca), Jerry Nadler (D-Ny), Zoe Lofgren (D-Ca), Hakeem Jeffries (D-Ny), Val Demings (D-Fl), Jason Crow (D-Co), Sylvia Garcia (D-Tx). The White House formally announced the defense would be led by White House Counsel Pat Cipollone. The counsel team also includes Jay Sekulow, Ken Starr, Alan Dershowitz, Pam Bondi, Jane Raskin, Eric Herchmann, Robert Ray, Patrick Philbin, and Michael Purpura. On January 20, the White House named Congressman Doug Collins (R-Ga), Mike Johnson (R-La), Jim Jordan (R-Oh), Debbie Lesko (R-Az), Mark Meadows (R-Nc), John Ratcliffe (R-Tx), Elise Stefanik (R-Ny), and Lee Zeldin (R-Ny) as the eight house Republicans that would serve on the President’s defense team.

January 16th-20th was the beginning of the hearing, during which both the senators were sworn in. Votes were also taken concerning the procedure for the following days of the trial, led by the Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. After this process, the Senate adjourned for the Martin Luther King Jr. Day recess. The Senate chamber was modified into a court for the proceedings and the House impeachment managers began their opening presentation on the 22nd. According to the Resolution for Procedure presented by Mitch McConnell, both sides were given 24 hours over three days for their opening statements.

On day one of the opening statements, the Democrats presented evidence from the Trump-Zelensky phone call, President Trump’s own statements, and the House impeachment inquiry testimony. On the second day, the prosecution argued as to how the evidence provided demanded the removal of the President from office. On their last day of opening statements, the Democratic team explained possible responses from the defense and asked for the Senate to call witnesses. While some Republican Senators called the prosecution’s remarks repetitive, Tim Kaine (D-Va) affirmed that this was purposeful, due to the fact that many Senators do not follow the proceedings closely. At the end of the opening statement, Senator Schiff warned that the Trump team, having failed to smear the Bidens using Ukraine, will use this trial to do just that.

On January 25, the presidential defense team began its statements.They argued that there was a lack of direct evidence of wrongdoing, and also asserted that the impeachment inquiry was merely a Democratic tool to steal the 2020 election. Selukow added to this claim by saying that the supposed Ukranian meddling in the 2016 election had given Trump cause to investigate corruption in Ukraine, despite lack of evidence. Purpura presented evidence showing that three witnesses were not aware of Ukraine expressing concern about the withdrawal of the aid until last August. He suggested that Ukraine was unaware of the aid being withheld and as a result there could have been no quid pro quo expressed during the July 25th call. However, Purpura declined to present the testimony of Laura Cooper, who had testified that her office received emails on July 25th from Ukrainian officials asking about the hold.

The Senate recessed on January 26th and returned to complete the defense argument on Monday . Defense lawyers argued that the accusations do not rise to the level of impeachable offenses against a backdrop of new revelations from a forthcoming book by John Bolton. These revelations, which appear to support democrats’ contentions, may lead the necessary four or more republican senators to vote against their party, in support of calling more witnesses, including Bolton. This outcome would be a win for democrats and a blow to the President. Stayed tuned, as The Advocate updates the story.

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Social Media Influencers http://theacademyadvocate.com/3199/entertainment/social-media-influencers/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3199/entertainment/social-media-influencers/#respond Mon, 27 Jan 2020 12:58:59 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/?p=3199 The majority of corporate marketing was historically advertised through the help of television and newspapers, but over the last decade, advertising has shifted to a more modern platform: social media. The rise of social media has created a subset of celebrities who use their massive audiences to influence users. These influencers use companies such as Instagram and Facebook to promote or recommend merchandise. Influencers promote sales of products and services by using their “personal” relationship with their followers. By using these social media platforms, they can establish a large presence in specific industries, accessing large audiences and giving the influencers the ability to advocate their message across platforms.

But, where did the idea of social media influencers originate from? Marketing companies utilize apps such as Instagram to capitalize on popular posts to reach large audiences. These companies search for relevant social media influencers, contracting with them in exchange for advertising the companies’ products. Social media influencers have created a sense of authority and trust with their followers in their individual marketing spaces. Companies are more vulnerable to losing business if they are not affiliated with any social media influencers, because consumers rely on celebrities and social media stars to share certain products or services.

Kylie Jenner, by Hayu [CC BY(https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)]


One of the most popular social media influencers is Kylie Jenner. Amassing 152 million followers on Instagram, she has become the youngest self-made billionaire ever. The mogul promotes her own makeup products, allowing her to grow substantially more than her rival influencers. Showing off her newest makeup kits, Jenner makes one million dollars per sponsored Instagram post. Another social media influencer who has made his mark from the digital world is Cameron Dallas, having accumulated an enormous fanbase on platforms such as Vine and YouTube. Dallas secured his own TV show on Netflix and has ventured into the music industry with the help of his internet fame and stardom.

Cameron Dallas, Courtesy of Walt Disney TV

The Academy community is unified on the topic of social media influencers. Ben Montoya ‘23 remarks, “I mostly follow athletes and movie/tv stars, often seeing them advertising products to their followers. These posts usually get people to buy the products because they see their favorite influencers using them.” Andrew Harrod ’22 believes that social media influencers “are very rich for how little effort it takes. I used to follow an influencer whose online alias was Filthy Frank. He had an extremely satirical and odd view on life. Along with edgy humor, his videos were unlike anything I’ve ever seen. He is better known as the singer Joji now, but he has impacted my sense of humor greatly.” An anonymous student added, “Social media influencers are people who have a following for the entertainment they produce on the internet. The influencers I follow create a culture of their aspects of life through their videos, music or posts. They impact the community through spreading their beliefs and their background through what they produce.”

Social media influencers are more than just advertising products on different platforms; using their internet presence to spread a message, these influencers inevitably create a loyal fanbase which will support them in the long run.

 

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“I Would Only Leave For a School I Thought was Special” http://theacademyadvocate.com/3185/news/i-would-only-leave-for-a-school-i-thought-was-special/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3185/news/i-would-only-leave-for-a-school-i-thought-was-special/#comments Mon, 20 Jan 2020 14:26:19 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/3185/school-and-local/i-would-only-leave-for-a-school-i-thought-was-special/ Shortly after Albuquerque Academy Head of School Andy Watson announced his impending retirement, a vigorous search for a qualified leader to take his place was well underway, led by the Board of Trustees. Once the applicants had been narrowed down to three, the student body, faculty, staff, and parents became involved in the process. A series of question and answer sessions and interviews with the applicants took place on campus, and soon a school-wide debate over who would serve the Albuquerque Academy and its mission the best ensued. Eventually, the Board, taking into account input from the Academy community, decided upon Julianne Puente to be Albuquerque Academy’s new Head of School (HOS).

Ms. Puente, a graduate of Cornell and Columbia Universities, worked at her former high school, Hackley School in Tarrytown, New York, as a teacher, administrator, and soccer coach for 14 years. She left the school after being recruited as the Deputy Headmaster, Dean of Students, and Girl’s Soccer Coach for the King’s Academy, a private school in Mabada-Manja, Jordan that she helped establish in 2009. As both a teacher and administrator, Ms. Puente has strong relationships with many of her students, some of whom she has stayed in touch with 12 years after teaching them. Puente has made “deep friendships” at King’s Academy, and she said, “I would only leave for a school that I thought was really special. And that’s how I felt about Albuquerque Academy.” Ms. Puente has been a fan of the Academy –in particular its mission, its commitment to diversity among students, faculty, and staff, and its unique programs like Experiential Education, Commitment to Service, and the DOT Garden — for over 10 years. She knows the transition will be difficult, but “the thing that is making it palatable is where I’m going.”

I can’t think of a better chance to take than on a kid.”

— Julianne Puente

Pondering her future adjustment to life in Albuquerque, Ms. Puente joked that she might find herself standing on the path that stretches from the lower to the upper campus at seven or eight at night, asking herself, “Where is everybody?” As a faculty member working at a boarding school, Ms. Puente lives at the heart of the King’s Academy, ending her day around students at 10:30 to 11:00 PM, and starting it at 6:00 AM at the gym. Although nostalgic about her students and life in Jordan, Ms. Puente lit up suddenly when she discussed her future as Head of School at the Academy. During the selection process, she felt as though “it was meant to be.” She was warmly received by the community–with students, faculty, and parents sending over 60 letters and dozens of emails–and she felt comfortable “meeting all the wonderful people there.” Now, she is excited to learn the ins and outs of the Academy, or as she calls it, the “Academy Charger language.” The key, she says, to getting to know the students as well as maintaining a role as an administrator, is to “be genuine, to be transparent, and to follow through.”

She stated that, during her second year as the Head of School, she would consider teaching a class in one of the humanities, because of her love for teaching and connecting with students. Ms. Puente said, “I can’t think of a better chance to take than on a kid.” She is committed to getting to know students and hearing their opinions, and although she is not “omnipresent,” she joked, she will be sure to “be methodical about trying to meet with groups of students” as soon as she arrives on campus. At King’s, Ms. Puente has relationships with her students that are beyond surface level. She said, “I know their stories. I know their families. I get to see them at their very best, and perhaps sometimes when they’ve made mistakes.” She plans to form these connections with students at the Academy as well–although she knows it may be challenging due to the large student population–because “when kids know that you genuinely care about them, or love them, really, you can handle any issue.”

Ms. Puente, despite having heard about various topics of discussion at the Academy, is adamant about not entering her role with an agenda. Rather, she is excited, she said, to organize “barbecues or teas or whatever it is that we do at Academy.” Here, she will ask students, parents, and faculty to “give me my marching orders, tell me what we need to do and why. And I might push back a bit and come back to you.” When asked about what she would do to increase school spirit, she gave a variety of examples of ideas she had implemented at Hackley, such as Friday Night games for breast cancer awareness, having a cookout at games, or having the orchestra play pop up concerts in the quad. By the end of the interview, it was apparent that Ms. Puente plans to use her past experiences working with kids in many different aspects, to be a passionate and caring leader for the Academy. She said, “I’m not saying it’s going to be easy or I’m not going to make mistakes, but I feel embraced, ready, and excited to be there.”

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Cursed Academy http://theacademyadvocate.com/3144/school-and-local/cursed-academy/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3144/school-and-local/cursed-academy/#respond Sun, 15 Dec 2019 14:20:28 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/?p=3144 The Academy campus is quite big, and most students feel that they know all about it, but @cursed_academy goes above and beyond with its exploration of all its nooks and crannies. The Instagram channel is devoted to finding bizarre places located around the Albuquerque Academy campus. Is the Academy campus really a cursed place?!

According to its bio, the account is “A page dedicated to exploring the most cursed places on Albuquerque Academy’s campus.” It is only open to Albuquerque Academy students and alumni according to the bio. The account owner is anonymous and rejected an interview from the Advocate. When approached for an interview, the channel said, “Thank You For Your Interest But This Seems Like A Trap So The Council Respectfully Declines Your Invitation. [sic]”

 

Darin Eberhardt, ’25

The account, which is fairly new, posting first on September 25, 2019, is growing rapidly. It has already gained over 400 followers. The account has seven posts up to this point, four of them describing mysterious places around the Academy, one of them including pictures of the past location of the Alpine Tower climbing course to the north-east of campus, one stating the mission of the channel, and one claiming that some teachers at the Academy are up to mysterious business. The posts often include a humorous blurb, such as, “…Let’s Explore The Freaky Room Under The Science Building!!! (It’s Musty AND Dusty)…[sic]”

As for the reason that cursed_academy explores the places it does, the answer lies in one of its posts. Here the account says, “DISCLAIMER: Despite What The Common Folk May Be Saying, We Do NOT Break Into Cursed Places. In All Seriousness, We Just Stumble Upon Them And Explore For The Sake Of Knowledge. Knowledge For The Sake Of Doing. Wisdom, Conviction…[sic]”

 

The locations that are depicted in the photos include a room under the science building, as mentioned above, a “Little Elf Door” in the library, a door located outside the Natatorium, and a secret room, most likely located in one of the gyms. The room underneath the science building is a rather damp, musty room with a tiled floor and cement walls. The room has pipes coming out of the walls, along with a singular plastic red cup and an empty fridge. The location of the room under the science building has not been discovered up to this point by the Advocate. The small door in the library is about one to two feet tall and has a couple of step stools among other objects. The Advocate has discovered the library door, but unfortunately it was locked, so we did not get a peek inside. The door located outside the Natatorium is most notable because of the llama painted on the concrete

Darin Eberhardt, ’25

wall next to it. The location has been identified by the Advocate. The gym room is a bit eerie. There is a washing machine and a cooler in it, along with other objects. There is a whiteboard in the room with the words “START:” and “FINISH:” on it. The location of this room is unidentified by the Advocate.

 

The owner of @cursed_academy has certainly made an odd hobby of finding these creepy locations around campus. Considering the size of the Academy campus, it is not surprising that “cursed” places exist. There are almost certainly many more to be explored. Maybe you could be the next explorer. “The Council” surely cannot find all of them.

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College Bribery Scandal http://theacademyadvocate.com/3136/news/college-bribery-scandal/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3136/news/college-bribery-scandal/#respond Thu, 12 Dec 2019 19:46:32 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/?p=3136

What are we willing to do to get into that perfect school? Well, most of us study hard for the SATS, work to keep our grades up, get involved with community service and extracurricular activities, and pour our hearts and free time into college applications but, there is another way.

Bribery.

It’s long been said that money opens doors, and apparently $500,000 paid to the athletic officials at the University of Southern California will kick down the door to higher education. At least that’s how it worked for Isabella and Olivia Giannulli, daughters of actress Lori Loughlin and clothing designer Mossimo Giannulli.

Loughlin, perhaps better known as Aunt Becky from the hit 80’s sitcom Full House, and its 2016 reboot, Fuller House, was among the wealthy parents accused. On April 3, 2019 Loughlin and Giannulli were brought before a federal court in Boston to face charges of paying $500,000 “in exchange for having their daughters designated as recruits to the University of Southern California crew team” according to a criminal complaint released on March 12, despite the girls having never competed in crew.

Thirty-three wealthy parents have been charged with bribing their children’s way into prestigious colleges after a 10-month investigation code named “Varsity Blues.” 13 parents and one coach have already pled guilty, including actress Felicity Huffman, best known for her role in Desperate Housewives. Huffman paid an SAT proctor $15,000 to help her daughter cheat by correcting her answers after the test had been submitted. There is some debate as to whether or not Huffman’s daughter knew about the correction; she claims she was ignorant as to her parents actions. Huffman received four months in prison. 

At the center of the scandal is college consultant William Singer. Singer arranged for students to take their ACTs and SATs at sites in Houston where he had bribed proctors to correct their tests. Additionally he bribed coaches to “falsely certify that students had been recruited for the school’s sports teams. Prosecutors said he also falsified ethnicities and other biographical details in some cases, to take advantage of affirmative action,” according to the New York Times. 

 So, all you need to succeed in life  is hard work, a good heart, and rich parents. But soon that might change. What effects will this have on the admissions process for those of us without $500,000 and photoshopped pictures of us on rowboats? Here at Albuquerque Academy, higher education is a goal of most of the student body. What does a major pebble in the pond of the college application process mean for us? 

“I don’t think there will be much impact [on Academy students’ college applications]. I hope that parents who are wondering what else they might be able to do will see this really extreme example and say ‘that’s not the path we want to go down, even if we were just going to go down it in milder ways’. Throwing money at a problem like college admissions doesn’t necessarily yield the results you think it will,” said college guidance counselor Mr. Ralph Figueroa.

No matter the changes that are made, however, the college application process is grueling. What lengths would we go to get into that dream school? Are there students at Academy whose families would do something similar?

 “I wouldn’t” said senior Leedy Corbin. “I’d constantly be feeling like I wouldn’t belong there… it’s tough. I personally don’t have the moral ambiguity to sneak someone else’s spot.”

The path to Ivy Leagues and other prestigious colleges is an incredibly difficult one. It is impossible not to see the unfairness present in the college application process.

“Fairness has never been the purpose, and that’s what students and parents have a hard time dealing with,” said Figueroa.

Time will tell if this scandal will even the playing field or just continue to complicate the process of seeking higher education. However, it is important to remember these words from Mr. Figueroa, “You have to be admitted for who you are… you have to be true to yourself… [and] you have to realize… you will thrive no matter where you go.” 

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Flight of the Mind http://theacademyadvocate.com/3164/entertainment/flight-of-the-mind/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3164/entertainment/flight-of-the-mind/#respond Thu, 12 Dec 2019 19:28:11 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/?p=3164 In the Albuquerque Academy production of “Flight of the Mind”, director Laurie Thomas guided us on an exhilarating airborne journey through real and imaginary worlds. Performed in the Little Theater, the play combined the experiences of World War II and a fantasy board game between two characters based on Queen Titania and King Oberon with angel envoys. This production was well-expressed by the actors and the storylines were quite clear. The spit storyline added a whole new aspect to this play.

Jason Collin

Ariel Evans, played by Leedy Corbin ‘20,and Dorothy Swain, played by Jayce Ross ‘20, the main pilots, were with their husbands when the men receive a letter that they have been drafted into the army. Out of grief, the women find the WASP (Women’s Airforce Service Pilots) agents and join up in the hope of helping their husbands. The WASP agents are given sabotaged planes, and a woman named Margie Hurlburt, portrayed wonderfully by Kira Small ‘22, died in a plane crash. She is then escorted by the angels to the king and queen’s realm. After much mourning, Dorothy reminds everyone that the other plane that day also had trouble and that she thought it was no accident that Margie’s plane crashed. In the end, everyone got wings, implying they died, and the angels finally decide to break free of the Master King and Queen’s rule, ending by playing jeopardy with a surprise video of Mr. Zuffranieri.

From the many cardboard airplanes hanging from the ceiling to the map with the airplane pawns on the floor, everything was beautifully designed. Wings were a big part in the costumes of many characters, including the avatars and the angels. There were small towers in each back corner, which were the places for the Master king and queen. The king’s tower was represented by Raptors and the queen by Castles. The airplanes hanging from the ceiling were exquisitely made with the tail fins crafted perfectly.

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Tattoos of Albuquerque Academy http://theacademyadvocate.com/3147/arts-and-leisure/tattoos-of-albuquerque-academy/ http://theacademyadvocate.com/3147/arts-and-leisure/tattoos-of-albuquerque-academy/#comments Sun, 08 Dec 2019 18:37:06 +0000 http://theacademyadvocate.com/?p=3147 Hiyab Abraha ’20

Hiyab got a tattoo on her side in May of 2019 while she was living in Beijing. On a study trip to Southern China, she and her friends tore pages out of their itineraries, folded them into paper boats, and raced them on the river. Later, they went to an underground tattoo shop in Beijing where they had gotten ear piercings just weeks before, and got matching tattoos of paper boats to commemorate their experience. 

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