Indian Child Welfare Act

by: Leah Kaylor, Theresa Schuetz and Luke Shevchik

Sophmore Alexxus Reynolds. Photo by: Theresa Schuetz

Students may be unaware of ICWA and its purpose, however, they may know about Native Americans in the mid-20th century being forced to assimilate into American life and its long-lasting devastation to Native American culture and tribes.

“It’s kind of sad I haven’t heard about it (ICWA) until you brought it to my attention,” sophomore Alaysia Tarpley said.

Although many don’t know about the Indian Child Welfare Act, it still holds significance in the Native American community. ICWA is an Act that has existed since the late ‘70s; it is used to protect Native American children from being removed from their tribes. The Act gives tribal governments exclusive jurisdiction over children who live on a reservation; it also prioritizes sending adoptee Native children to Native American families as a way to preserve culture.

Recent controversy has been raised stating the Act is unconstitutional and makes it harder for Native American children in foster care to be adopted.

“This Act is only looking out for the best interest and well-being of a minority group,” sophomore Alexxus Reynolds said. “Removing it would rid the child of their culture and roots.”

Many families, after fostering Native American children, attempt to adopt them, but are often times rejected or are told to prove they are good people. Many believe this process is too strict and greatly limits their ability to adopt children whom they have been fostering long-term.

The strict process of adopting Native American children raised arguments that were heard in the Supreme Court on November 9th, 2022. These arguments have the possibility of overturning ICWA and are currently being reviewed.

“I would find a more sustainable alternative to overturning the Act,” senior Evan Malie said.

One of the other main arguments against ICWA is that it goes against the 10th Amendment’s anti-commandeering Act. The anti-commandeering Act ceases federal control over states’ choices.

“I do not believe that this Act is unconstitutional because it is not giving anyone an unfair advantage,” Reynolds said.

The Supreme Court is said to reach a decision on whether to keep or overturn ICWA by June of this year, which has many outraged because of ICWA’s long-standing protection towards Native American children and culture.

“It’s such a sensitive topic that should have more attention brought to it, and I would learn more about it and talk to those offended to gather their perspectives,” Civics teacher Mr. Nicholas Diehl said.

Class of 23’s Plans

by: Theresa Schuetz

College board outside of the main office. Photo by: Theresa Schuetz

The paths people take after high school vary, and it’s not easy to choose which one to go down. Students can choose to further their education, go into the workforce or even take a gap year to enjoy time out of school.

The most popular path people tend to choose is university or college. Furthering education is what students tend to do most often because it is said to be the most reliable way to get a job.

Each college has many different options to include people with different interests and goals. There are many different professions people are passionate about and can choose to pursue.

“I chose to go to school for criminal justice because I have always been fond of crime scene investigating and doing things hands-on,” senior Kaidence Thompson said.

Not everyone wants to jump into college life; others want to spend time out of school to follow their passions. Senior Owen Tutich will be playing hockey somewhere during his gap year.

“I plan on attending a four-year college after my gap year and continuing to play hockey while studying business,” Tutich said.

Student-athletes often take their passions and try to turn them into pursuable futures. According to, only two percent of student-athletes make it to college teams on a scholarship and fewer than two percent of college athletes go pro. Even with these odds, many athletes don’t let it stop them and continue chasing their dreams.

Role models heavily impact what people dream of doing in the world and even change what people choose to do post-high school.

“My biggest inspiration growing up was my grandfather who served in WWII; he’s what got me into the idea of it from a very young age,” senior Alex Toth said.

Joining the military is another popular choice when it comes to post-secondary. According to, 87% of the military is made up of 18-year-olds. There are many reasons young adults choose to pursue the military, it could be to fund college, honor a family member or serve their country.

“Initially I wanted to experience what my grandfather had in WWII, then as I was growing up the more I saw and heard, I knew I just wanted to help people,” Toth said.

There are no set paths that students are required to go down post-high school, opportunities grow with each thing that is done.

“Follow your passion, be willing to work for it and not every dream starts at the top,” principal Mr. David Zilli said. “Sometimes you have to enter at the bottom and work your way up.”

The Truth in What We Consume

by: Leah Kaylor

Healthy substitution board in the nutrition room. Photo by: Leah Kaylor

Over 60% of Americans are affected by some type of ailment, according to the CDC, and most are largely believed to be connected to obesity.   

In the US, 60% of Americans are clinically obese or have chronic illnesses due to what they consume. Americans are more likely to develop illnesses such as cancer, food allergies and diabetes because of ingredients being consumed daily. These ingredients in particular are banned in other countries according to CNN.   

In Europe carcinogens and preservatives are all banned because of the effects they have on someone’s overall health. Americans do not follow the same food guidelines as Europeans do, according to the nutrition website called focusforhealth. When it comes to food supply, Europeans have a mindset of “better safe than sorry,” while the US has a motto of “innocent until proven guilty.”  

An ingredient used in the US called Azodicarbonamide is used in flour which makes dough spongy and rise, but it just so happens the same ingredient is used to make yoga mats and flip flops, the CDC states.   

“It’s sad to think we don’t even think about some of the things we consume, but so much of what we have is unhealthy,” junior Bryonna Macioce said.  

Macioce looks at the photos that are advertised of food to make it look appealing and healthy, but sees photos of food from other countries and the realness of it.   

“I think people really need to take a step back and think about having balance in what you eat,” junior Grace Shrum said.  

Shrum believes some people will consume mostly junk, but they don’t look at the bigger picture of what people eat every day without balance.  

The US food quality crisis is partly because of the government relying on companies producing the products to prove their own guilt. The US uses a system called GRAS, generally recognized as safe ingredients, which essentially means companies are protected from lawsuits from being held liable, which other countries do not have according to  

“When I think about how we are consuming an ingredient that is made in yoga mats and rubber, it’s sad how no one knows that because no one looks at what they are eating,” junior Alethea Tressler said.   

The topic of Americans’ health is shaded and minimized by the fact there is a hysteria that healthy food tastes gross and junk food tastes better. New Food Magazine had an article that states that healthier food is more expensive because it’s less likely to have preservatives. Junk food in America is photoshopped to make it seem more appealing to the human eye, and it is typically cheaper than healthy food.   

“It’s shocking to think that many people are not aware of this problem, but it’s also sad,” Mrs. Morgan Ferczak said. “There is a known problem with the food quality, and it needs to be addressed.”    

Ferczak believes most people don’t have a clue as to what is being consumed into every day diets, nor do people look at the ingredients in the food itself. Ingredients tend to be hard to even pronounce on the back of most processed food and contain about 30 ingredients, whereas in Europe there tend to be five ingredients, all real.   

“Other countries’ ingredients are able to be read, whereas I read something on the back of a product and there are over 20 ingredients I can’t even pronounce,” Ferczak said.  


Summer In Greensburg

by: Theresa Schuetz

St. Clair Park entrance. Photo by: Theresa Schuetz

Summer is approaching quickly and Greensburg has many events and places for people to spend those hot days.

Ice cream is the perfect summer treat that many use to cool down on sunny days. Greensburg has three main ice cream shops, Dairy Queen, The Meadows and Cold Stone Creamery. Each offers its own twist on ice cream that offers relief from hot weather.

“I like to get ice cream from Dairy Queen,” senior Madison Krofcheck said.

Greensburg usually kicks off the summer spirit with Community Days which are held at Lynch Field on Memorial Day weekend. The event is perfect for families and teenagers to feel the summer spirit and realize how close summer really is. However, due to renovations happening this year to the Kirk S. Nevin Arena, Community Days have been canceled.

Although Community Days are canceled, Greensburg’s volunteer firefighters will be holding a one-day “Party in the Park” at St. Clair Park with free admission on May 27th from 1-9 pm.

“I’m bummed it’s canceled because I feel like it’s a start to summer,” sophomore Anna Shevchik said.

St. Clair Park also starts Music in the Park each Friday in the summer. St. Clair has stands that are set up with food and some merchandise that guests can buy.

“I love all the summer sounds concerts at St. Clair Park; I think that’s one of the coolest things that we do in this town,” Art teacher Mr. Darryl Audia said.

Greensburg also starts off the summer with night markets that start in April and end in December. The market has a lot of different types of vendors to interest a wide variety of people and many kinds of food to choose from. The market takes place in downtown Greensburg and is held May 25th, June 22nd, July 27th, August 31st, October 26th, November 15th and December 14th of this year.

“I like looking at all the different booths that are at the Night Markets,” sophomore Abigale Lauffer said.

Westmoreland County itself also holds a large variety of events in the summer to bring communities together.  Westmoreland County has announced that this year’s Arts and Heritage Festival is celebrating its 49th year of operation. This festival takes place annually and is held at Twin Lakes this year from June 29th to July 2nd.

“I really like the different art stands, there was a crochet and pottery one when I went that I liked,” Lauffer said.

Westmoreland County also holds the Westmoreland Fair towards the end of summer and this year is no different. The Westmoreland County Fair features games, rides, animals and food from August 18th to the 26th. Even though the events do not change, people from all over the County gather to have fun.

“I like to go on rides and walk around with friends at the Fair,” Shevchik said.

Pittsburgh Sports Update

by: Luke Shevchik

PNC park during a pirates game. Photo submitted by: Paige Storkel

The city of Pittsburgh is known for its passionate sports fans who support their beloved teams through thick and thin. 

The Pirates and Steelers are two of the most iconic and storied franchises in the city. 

Up to the 2023 NFL draft, fans of the Steelers were excited to see what the team was planning.  

The Steelers had several draft picks, including the 11th overall pick in the first round. They selected Broderick Jones, an offensive tackle.       

“They needed an offensive tackle the most,” sophomore Jake Robl said. “I am very pleased with their draft picks, and amped for this upcoming season.” 

In the 2nd round, the Steelers settled on Joey Porter, Jr., a cornerback from Penn State when people seemed to be very pleased about.  

Other draft picks included Keeanu Benton, a defensive tackle from Wisconsin later in the 2nd round; Darnell Washington, a tight end from Georgia in the 3rd round; Nick Herbig, a linebacker form Wisconsin in the 4th round; Cory Trice, a cornerback from Purdue, and Spencer Anderson, an Offensive Tackle from Maryland, both in the 7th round. 

Meanwhile, on the North Shore the Pirates have been taking care of business so far this season.  

The Pirates have faced some struggles in recent years, with a losing record in each of the previous five seasons.  

“I didn’t think we would be sitting in this position and playing this well,” senior Sam Spigarelli said. “Taking aside the losing streak recently, we have been playing fantastic.”  

The Pirates strolled through the month of April, winning 20 out of their first 28 games.  

The hot start had plenty to do with veterans like Carlos Santana, Bryan Renyolds and Pittsburgh’s fan favorite Andrew McCutchen playing above the radar.  

Additional assets include closing pitcher and Pittsburgh native David Bednar, along with the entire starting rotation.  

Mitch Keller has pitched eight games totaling 56 strikeouts, a 4-1 record and an ERA (earned run average) of 2.72.  

The outfield also includes some new faces with Connor Joe and Ji Wan Bae, who both have made extreme impacts for the team. 

Since the month of May the Pirates have entered a slump, dropping 10 of their last 12 games, taking them from a 20-9 record in April to a 22-19 record. With the Milwaukee Brewers sweeping Kansas City, the Pirates find themselves a game and half back of 1st place in the NL Central division as of this writing.  

The Buccos look to catch fire again with a two-set stand coming up with the Detroit Tigers after a dominating 4-0-win to avoid the sweep in Baltimore, while the Steelers look ahead to the new season with hopes of returning to the playoffs. 

Upcoming Events in May

by: Theresa Schuetz

Markquee outside of the High school that lists important events: Photo by: Theresa Schuetz

May is GS’ last full month of school with many important deadlines or exciting events lining the month’s days. 

Many students will be entering summer vacation without looking back; however, seniors may find it hard to leave without doing so. Senior projects are being presented on May 5th, marking the end of many seniors’ journey at GS. 

“Senior projects are our first real experience of anything that will be remotely close to anything you’re going to do when you graduate here,” Mrs. Jackie Yuhas said. 

Senior projects aren’t the only things happening this May that help shape students’ futures; scattered throughout May are the AP tests for students who are striving to get college credits during high school. 

“I hope to do well and get credits for it (APUSH),” sophomore Alice Wilkinson said. 

May is also filled with many fun things that are celebrated outside of school, such as Cinco de Mayo, Mother’s Day and Memorial Day. 

GS’ annual Culture Day arrives shortly after Cinco de Mayo. Culture Day is used to educate students on French and Spanish culture who don’t take a language and some elementary students who come to the high school as well.  

“Culture Day is really a great day for our students to take pride in what they learn in class, but also a way for them to connect what they do in class to something they’re passionate about outside in their own personal lives,” French teacher Madame Stephanie Grace said. 

Following culture day closely is Prom. Students spend months picking out clothing, shoes, makeup, hair and flowers to prepare for the formal dance. Many are excited over the whimsical enchanted garden theme of this year’s Prom which was suggested by current seniors last year.  

“I honestly love this year’s theme; I think it was a great idea and I’m excited to see how it will look,” sophomore Greta Hagofsky said. 

Due to senior project day, prom, and Memorial Day, students will have three days off school this month, leaving only 21 days left of school as of May 4th

“I was able to meet some really amazing teachers this year and make some new friends, but I’m excited for summer break,” sophomore Shaniah Wills said. 

Mental Health Awareness Month

by: Leah Kaylor

Mental health awareness assembly. Photo submitted by: Emma Helmick

The month of May is dedicated to bringing awareness to those who have experienced depression or anxiety and to bringing light to the struggles people go through day to day.  

Sophomore Alice Wilkinson is hoping that schools mandate more discussions on students’ mental health. 

“I think there are people that are struggling in GS with their mental health, and anyone can struggle,” Wilkinson said. “It doesn’t matter whether you have a perfect life or not, anyone can experience depression.” 

In just 2023, there have been over 47,000 suicides in the US, and the highest percentage are young adults who have experienced depression and/or anxiety, according to the CDC. 

Junior Ashlan Price hopes that the stereotype of mental health will one day break and students can open up more about their struggles without having to feel judged.  

“In high school I think it’s hard on students, especially with sports and the stress of a high school student,” Price said. “There are so many aspects of mental health; you can be tired or just feel sad which all can affect how you perform, especially in school.” 

The CDC states that suicide is the 2nd leading cause of premature death between the ages of 10-24 in the United States. 

According to Psychology Today, there are studies that show that seeing a therapist has helped or even treated clinical depression. Therapists are able to engage and learn about a person’s life or struggles without becoming a part of it.  

“If someone is struggling, I would definitely suggest talking to someone such as a therapist,” junior Ella Henry said. “It’s about finding what works for you and what helps you such as drawing or journaling to cope with what you’re dealing with.” 

The CDC states that a person’s mental health is an important part of overall health and well-being. Mental health includes a person’s emotional, psychological, and social well-being.  

“Mental health is a person’s ability to respond and cope to certain thoughts, feelings or emotions,” Mrs. Alyssa Lukatch said. “When disruptions in those thoughts, feelings or emotions start to occur, mental instability starts to happen.” 

Mrs. Lukatch believes the concentration should be one’s mental wellness instead. Each individual needs to look at what self-care methods or coping strategies they have in place in times of emotional and mental instability. 

“The school does a great job prioritizing mental health,” Lukatch said. “I think that at some point we as individuals need to prioritize our own mental health.” 


Arnold Palmer Regional Airport Introduces Flight School 

by: Luke Shevchik

Junior Kason Tai. Photo by: Luke Shevchik

Vee Neal Aviation recently expanded its operations at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport by building an aircraft hangar and flight school. 

The Westmoreland County Airport Authority approved and granted the option to construct two new hangars at the end of the airport.  

According to TRIB Live, government officials have estimated there will be about 18,000 openings annually for airline and commercial pilots this decade. 

Junior Kason Tai attended flight school through Vee Neal Aviation in Pittsburgh and is still in the process of pursuing his career as a pilot. 

“I had to study and research how to fly the plane and the protocols,” Tai said. “After a few trainings I got to fly the plane with my instructor.” 

Senior Alex Toth, who is currently a member of the U.S Army, advises anyone looking to pursue this field to attend a flight school because it can be beneficial. 

“This will help kids planning on going into the service by broadening their career options in the future and better their knowledge regarding carers in aviation,” Toth said. 

Jodaron Realty, a real estate development firm, awarded $1.9 million in contracts for the first phase of the terminal addition and improvement to Allegheny Construction Group Incorporated and ABS Building Systems.  

“Seniors have taken a flight school for their senior projects in the past,” Physics Teacher Mrs. Cheryl Harper said. “I think it’s a fantastic learning experience for anyone going into that field and I’m glad that it is now available locally.” 

Earth Day 2023

by: Luke Shevchik

Science teacher Mrs. Rachel Sassani. Photo by: Luke Shevchik

Earth Day, which is celebrated every year on April 22nd, is an opportunity to reflect on the ways in which humans can contribute to the well-being of the planet.  

This year, as the calendar approaches Earth Day in 2023, it is more important than ever to raise awareness about environmental issues and protect the planet. 

From consuming natural resources to how to dispose of waste, citizens of the earth can have a profound impact on the planet’s health.  

“I think it’s important to have Earth Day,” sophomore Kayla Ramer said. “It helps support environmental awareness and informs younger generations on the importance of this day.” 

As the world continues to see the devastating effects of global warming, from rising sea levels to extreme weather events, the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition to a safer economy is crucial. 

By raising awareness about these issues, people can be encouraged to take steps to help the planet every day by making the health of the planet a priority in daily life.  

“I believe that earth day activities like planting trees shouldn’t be resourced to one day,” senior Zach Rush said. “Consistently trying to reduce your carbon footprint should be the goal. It is our responsibility to pick up the pieces from the previous generations.”  

The health of this planet is linked to the wellness of all living creatures, from the smallest insects to the largest mammals.  

By protecting the environment, it can help ensure a healthier future for humanity and all the other species that call earth home. 

“Earth day is a good reminder that every day there are things we can do to enjoy and protect nature,” earth and space science teacher Mrs. Rachel Sassani said.  

School Shooting Epidemic Continues

by: Theresa Schuetz

Students interviewed, from left to right, Miley Riggs Maxx Arendas, and Emma Audia. Photo by: Theresa Schuetz

Schools are supposed to be safe spaces full of learning and growing ideas, however, as of late, more and more school shootings have been occurring. According to, there have been 13 school shootings so far in 2023.  

The most recent of the 13 shootings happened in Nashville, Tennessee, taking the lives of three children and three adults. School shootings have taken the lives of six children in total and four adults this year alone and injured 13 others this year according to Education Week.  

“We need protection to protect the children,” sophomore Miley Riggs said. 

Children die every day; however, according to CNN News, the leading cause of death for children is gun violence. The Washington Post states that since Columbine’s school shooting 376 other school shootings have taken place, traumatizing tens of thousands of students and teachers. 

“Thousands of children have lost their lives due to one person going into a place where we should be safe, and we’re not safe,” Riggs said. 

A common suggestion made for making schools safer has been to arm teachers in case of a shooting. 

“I don’t think teachers should carry guns on them,” sophomore Emma Audia said. “You don’t know who you’re giving a gun to.” 

Arming teachers has been debated since around 2018; many say that it won’t help slow down the number of school shootings, while others believe it is the best way for kids and adults to stay safe during one.  

“Now I wouldn’t say every teacher, but if you at least have one teacher that’s been there for a decent amount of time and they’re trusted among many and know their way around a firearm, I would not have an issue with arming a teacher,” junior Maxx Arendas said. 

With tensions high because of the number of shootings, people are torn apart, and schools are now threatened more than ever with gun threats. Every school in America practices drills and critiques what works for them when it comes to being threatened.  

Often times when there is a threat at GS, parents are informed and students continue what they’re doing in the moment, but there is a lot more going on behind the scenes to keep students and staff safe. 

“We take them very seriously,” Dean of Students Mr. Jeff Kronenwetter said. “I wouldn’t want our techniques to be spread out there, but we practice, we go through routines, we run through the fire drills and the active shooter drills.”  

Although there isn’t a concrete answer as to why people end up threatening schools or end up following through with their threats, there are some assumptions as to why they might. One of those theories is mental disorders which then sparks the debate about implicating more extensive background checks. 

Audrey Hale, the Covenant school shooter, legally purchased multiple firearms while allegedly struggling with mental disorders, which supports the debate about more extensive background checks.  

“The only gun restrictions that I think should be in effect are more extensive background checks,” Arendas said. 

The other theory as to why school shootings are so prominent is the easy access to obtaining high-grade weapons. 

The Uvalde shooter had a military-style rifle, which also causes controversy as to what types of guns should be sold to citizens and which types of guns should be restricted. 

“Automatics are too easy to get, and those are the most dangerous ones, there aren’t that many restrictions for them,” Audia said. 

School gun violence is a tough topic for people to talk about and is a major target that citizens want taken care of.  

“I think it’s genuinely the worst thing that isn’t being taken care of,” Riggs said.