Friday, February 7, 2014

Day 93 - Our Leader Recognizes Student Role Models

Today's post is from senior DECA president Matt Hejna

I have pride in this school particularly because of our Superintendent Kevin Borg. Last year, Mr. Borg was incredibly supportive of my suicide prevention campaign for DECA. I wanted to get Dr. Dan Reidenberg to speak at Mound Westonka High School. Dr. Reidenberg is a world renowned Suicide Prevention public speaker. Mr. Borg was instrumental in helping to get Dr. Reidenberg to present in the Mound Westonka area.

Of course, last year was a very stressful year for Mr. Borg as we all know because of a high profile incident that occurred in February. Although Mr. Borg was faced with some tough decisions and public scrutiny, I remained sympathetic to him throughout. Not only does he do a fantastic job managing the high school, but also the middle school, elementary schools, and community education along with that. In addition to being a student at the high school, I am also a staff member at Adventure Club. I know that Mr. Borg has high expectations for the program as I have heard him praise the program in the past.

Above all Mr. Borg is a great leader for the entire district. Despite all of his commitments to making the entire district as superb as it is, he has managed to make time to know my name, and recognize my hard work and effort. However, I know I’m not the only student he recognizes. Mr. Borg made a trip out to the Minneapolis Convention Center on a school day to encourage the DECA Public Relations project done by Courtney Simonson and Alex Rifle. It’s Mr. Borg’s willingness to work with all students, and make sure to recognize the role models that make him a great leader both in our district and in the community. Thank you Mr. Borg!

Zach, Matt, Trevor and Sam

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Thursday, February 6, 2014

Day 92 - Dance Places 1st in BOTH Kick and Jazz!

Today's post is from senior dance captain Ashley Woytcke

My name is Ashley Woytcke and I am currently a senior at MWHS and a second year captain of the Hawkettes dance team. Being apart of this team since I was in 8th grade has given me something to be very proud of. I have had the opportunity to do so many great things on this team and meet so many wonderful people in the process. There are many ups and downs on this team however, there is never a time where we just give up. If we don’t place the way we want to, we keep fighting. This year has been full of many 1st and 2nd place wins for both our jazz and kick dances but, sections was something we were going to have to really fight for. We went into sections this past weekend hoping to place somewhere in the top 3 to advance to the state tournament, but we never expected what would actually happened. We ended up placing 1st in both jazz and kick! We have never placed 1st in both dances at sections before and this was a huge accomplishment for our team. Going into sections everyone has high expectations and wants to make it to state, however not one girl on our team was expecting this and it made it an even better experience.

This year will be the 5th time I have been able to compete at the state tournament and I’m grateful to have this opportunity especially it being my senior year. Not many people get this opportunity and I wouldn’t get this chance without all the other girls on the team. We all push each other to become better dancers and that is the best part about our team. These girls have shown me how to never give up, even when its hard and if we didn’t have each other we would not have made it this far. The one quality I am most proud of is that we as a team are very humble. We never assume that we will just automatically make it to state because we have for the past 8 years. All year we strive to perfect our routines and continuously increase our scores. This year we worked especially hard to so that 23 girls would be able to dance at state and that is something we have accomplished as a team. Our motto this year has been to “dance as one and not an individual” and that is exactly what we have done. I am very proud of how close this team has become, I would consider every girl on the team part of my family. 

MWHS Hawkette Dance Team

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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Day 91 - Proud Parent and 25 Year Community Member

Today's post is from parent and community member Randy Lee

Mound Westonka residents have always taken pride in it's community and schools, especially the high school. Kristin and I had never heard of Mound until we were in college at Gustavus and met many other students who were from here. They spoke fondly of growing up on the lake, the small town feel, loving high school and being Mohawks. Many of those students have become life long friends of ours.

After living in Chicago for 6 years we were given an opportunity to move back to Minneapolis. We wanted to live on the lake and because of those friends from Gustavus and all of the wonderful things they had said about where they grew up, the first place we looked was Mound. We've now lived and raised our family in this community for 25 years.

The high school meant many things to our older children (Erik-class of 2006 and Anna--class of 2007), but for Kristin and I it meant excellence, opportunity and participation. We all know how well our students do in the classroom via the outstanding test score results each year. There were, and are, plenty of difficult courses being offered that pushed and challenged them both. Academic pursuit was important to both of them and the high school provided them the rigor they needed.

The beauty of the high school's size is there are numerous opportunities to get involved and participate. Whether it's sports, the arts, academic teams, DECA, Link Crew, band, language clubs, dance line, student council, band, pop singers, choir, cheer leaders, you name it, the high school gave them opportunities and they participated. They felt a part of something at the high school. They enjoyed participating in their activities, but also supporting and cheering on their friends as they competed in their activities. They developed that Mound Westonka Pride we hear so much about.

Eventually, they graduated and chose to go to college, Erik went to Denver University and Anna went to Colgate for under grad then Vanderbilt for her graduate studies. The well-rounded education they received in our school district and specifically at the high school had prepared them for the challenges that college would present.

Our youngest son, Torsten, is now halfway through his 8th grade year at the high school. We have no doubt that the high school will challenge him academically and offer him numerous opportunities to be involved and participate during his high school career. He has a great group of friends who are also on this journey with him. He is a proud White Hawk!!

Anna, Randy, Torsten, Kristin, and Erik Lee

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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Day 90 - A Path Like No Other

Today's post is from sophomore Jack Curti

As each student walks into Mound Westonka, they take their own separate path and embark on a journey like no other. I walked into MWHS a short, scared, and awkward eighth grader and had absolutely no clue where to go and what to do. Having to follow my older brothers my teachers recognized the name and instantly said “Are you Charlie and Ben’s brother?” and occasionally was called by their name. I continued through the year and then came registration for 9th grade, not a clue in the world what I wanted to do so I signed up for Drawing and Intro to Marketing. Little did I know that those two classes would change my high school experience.

Next came 9th grade, I walked into my drawing class and sat near some familiar faces and talked for a while. Then came the topic of the school musical, I was bombarded by questions of if I would do stage crew and I simply agreed. I went to marketing and instantly asked my teacher, “When is the DECA information meeting?” I was hooked on the class and then came the inspiration of what high school was going to be like.

Now let’s talk about this year, I took more business classes and currently I’m a DECA officer, MWHS pop singer, active in the musical, and aspire to graduate with as many arts and business classes as I can. I have really adapted to the school and found a place and a passion, and each year has gotten progressively more fun. Of course everyone has their bad days but each day seems better than the last. MWHS is the right school for me, and I can’t see myself anywhere else. I'm proud to be able to be called a White Hawk, and even though we don't have the best sports teams we have the most pride, and that is the most important part of the journey.

Anna, Jack, White Hawk & Courtney

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Monday, February 3, 2014

Day 89 - Dodgeball Champion Pride

Today's post is from junior Tony Christopulos

My name is 
Tony Christopulos and I am a junior at MWHS. I recently entered a team of guys into the 2014 MWHS Dodgeball Tournament. I drafted a team with the supervision and assistance of Michael Abegglen. The team consisted of two sophomores by the names of Wilson Priefer and Owen Young. Four juniors filled the remaining six places on the team consisting of Ross Ellingboe, Michael Abegglen, Reid Dahl and myself. Last, but definitely not least we hired a water boy by the name of Blake Rosenberg to accompany us on our journey through the tourney.

I have competed in the annual MWHS Dodgeball Tournament since I was in eighth grade. It has been my lifelong goal, or since eighth, to play in the championship in front of our humungous student body. This year my dream finally came true. My teammates and I fought through the tough competition and made it to the semi-finals. We had not lost yet as we took the court in the semi-final match against team Rahn. The whistle blew and the match began. It was a battle until the end of the match when team Rahn had three contestants left versus myself. One by one I eliminated team Rahn and we triumphed as we knew we were headed to the championship during the Snodaze assembly on Friday. The celebration was unreal, but we soon began to focus up for best two out of three matches we would compete in on Friday.

The day had finally arrived. It was Friday and my team was fully prepared to conquer team Tierney and defy all odds in order to take home the hardware. The assembly began with some announcements and videos as we warmed up for the match-up. Before we knew it Mr. Hiebert blew the whistle and game one was underway. The wrestlers came out firing and caught us off guard as they took the first game. Game two was a different story. We were well prepared for round two as we took down team Tierney to tie 1-1. The match came down to game 3. We knew who to target and defeated team Tierney as they failed to hit one of our athletes in the final game. As the sixth man was hit the senior class sitting courtside for the epic championship stormed the court. We hoisted the trophy and celebrated one final time as 2014 champions!

Ross, Wilson, Tony, Michael, Blake, Reid and Owen

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