By Emily Hung, Editor-in-Chief
Students and teachers complain when UPA restricts them access to certain websites or when the Wi-Fi speed lags.
In other words, they take for granted their freedom to access the internet.
Now a Republican-dominated Federal Communications Commission (FCC) vote of 3-2 on Dec. 14 has repealed net neutrality regulations that have prohibited broadband providers from restricting internet users access to or charging them for using certain websites, effective since Feb. 26, 2015.
The repeal “[opens] the door for [internet service providers] to charge more to some big broadband users which could pass those increased costs to their subscribers,” according to USA Today.
Certain companies such as Verizon and AT&T might begin adding special fees for YouTube or Netflix to their customers’ monthly bills.
Users might also be required to pay for a mix of different options from their broadband providers, including plans that could block video sites, messaging apps and Skype.
While UPA Executive Director Daniel Ordaz is not the least perturbed by the repeal, he does acknowledge that there are potential ramifications in the future yet to be determined.
The elimination of net neutrality could mean UPA’s internet service providers hinder Wi-Fi speeds, but the school has already been making preparations for Comcast to install fiber optic cables over Winter Break.
“The fiber optic cables would increase internet connection bandwidth and allow for faster downloads,” senior Anton Loeb said.
If the school’s internet service was affected, Ordaz would meet with the Board of Trustees to discuss options of coping with the loss of net neutrality, keeping a question in mind: Is the internet important for our students and our staff?
“The answer is: it’s indispensable,” Ordaz said. “All of our student records for attendance, for grades and for transcripts are done through computers, so I don’t have a choice. Many of our books are [on the] internet and much of the work you do in classrooms [is dependent on the] internet.”
Already mulling over several options to cope with the loss of net neutrality if the need for adjustments arise in the near future, Ordaz recommends students access free Wi-Fi from community venues, such as a local Starbucks or a library, when completing online homework or research after school.
“I also know that, for example, PG&E will provide low-cost service to seniors or to people who can’t pay for the service, but need to have it,” Ordaz said.
The effects from the repeal of net neutrality could be seen as soon as the next month, but large online companies—Amazon, Facebook, Netflix and Google—are currently still advocating for net neutrality and are planning to combat the FCC in court on behalf of consumers.
Congress also has the power to bring back net neutrality with a simple majority vote and by invoking the Congressional Review Act (CRA), which they intend to do in the next month.
The CRA gives Congress the ability to review new federal regulations by government agencies and overrule them if necessary.
“[This issue] is important to us [as well], so much as that we’ve improved our service by buying a better, faster service at the start of the year,” Ordaz said. “I hope [prices won’t go up]. I wish there was no money at all, but that’s just not life."
By Nicole Rendler, Managing Editor
On Thursday Oct. 5, Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation that officially made California a sanctuary state.
This bill limits the ability of the state and local governments to question, hold or transfer people involved in immigration cases.
According to the Los Angeles Times, California houses 72 percent of the people in the United States who are actively protected by DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals).
Children and young adults protected by DACA are called DREAMers, after Congress failed to pass the Development Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act in 2010.
The DREAM Act, initially introduced in 2001, offered the opportunity for undocumented children living in the United States to gain permanent legal residence, according to NBC News.
When then-President Barack Obama passed DACA as an executive order in 2012, it offered protection for the same undocumented population.
DACA ensures that 1.8 million DREAMers can stay in America, even after arriving with no legal immigration papers.
Recipients must have a clear criminal record and have arrived in the United States before 2007 while under the age of 16.
Seniors at UPA and throughout the country struggle with financial aid applications, but undocumented students are especially worried about the application process as well as university attendance, according to junior-senior counselor Sandra Trotch because DREAMers are under the assumption that the police can find them through their applications.
But this is not the case, Trotch said, as immigration services are not connected to university systems, nor can they track students through financial aid paperwork.
On Sept. 5, President Donald Trump decided to “sunset DACA, no longer accepting new applications and letting the two-year permits expire without the option for renewal,” according to CNN Politics.
According to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, as of November, no more DACAs, initial or renewal, are being accepted.
The people protected by DACA are predominantly from Mexico, Central American countries including the Caribbean, Asian countries such as the Philippines or North Korea.
The highest percentages of DREAMers currently reside in California, Texas, New York, Illinois and Florida, according to the American Immigration Council.
National Public Radio surveyed listeners and estimate that nearly two-thirds of Americans favor allowing DREAMers to remain in the United States.
Among that two-thirds was a surge of celebrities who used social media platforms to support DREAMers.
Latina singer Selena Gomez posted to her 127 million Instagram followers on Sept. 8, praising DREAMers.
“My definition of dreamer is someone that thinks big and believes anything is possible,” Gomez said in her post. “The wonderful people being threatened the unfortunate reversal of DACA are exactly that.”
Celebrities such as Emily Osment, Shailene Woodley, America Ferrera and Mark Ruffalo have also expressed their support for DREAMers and their frustration with Trump’s decision.
By Bianca Lang, Staff Writer
Members of the San Jose Police Department are booking overtime to keep up with the shortage of officers.
The SJPD believes it needs at least 500 officers for a city with more than a million people, but according to ABC News, it only has 413.
The SJPD declared a state of emergency on September 11, 2016. Police Chief Edgardo Garcia will now be able to reassign 47 officers from specialized tasks, like investigations, to fill in as police officers.
This may be why the media liaisons officer didn’t respond to my email interview, and the voicemail option was filled and unavailable.
In an August 2016 interview with ABC News, Mayor Sam Liccardo said, “No resident, no chief wants to have a lot of officers out there, working multiple overtime shifts in a week, knowing they may not be well rested, and they have to make very critical decisions.”
The mayor said in an August 2016 interview with Mercury News that “We’ve got to fix a serious police staffing shortage, and if the chief tells me he needs this declaration to help him fix it in the short run, we’ll do it.”
People have blamed this shortage to a drop in volunteers for the overnight shift, officer departures, and small police academy classes, but Measure B seems to be a contributed to it as well.
According to ballotpedia.org, Measure B, approved on June 7, 2016, enacted a 0.25% general sales tax that will last for 15 years.
It was estimated to bring in $38 million, and was going to go to the city’s general fund. The funds could be used for any government purpose.
According to the Santa Clara County Elections Office, funds acquired through Measure B is used to improve police response times to violent crimes, restore additional police officers on patrol, expand anti-crime programs, restore fire engines, paramedic and firefighting services, and repair streets.
However, hundreds of SJPD officers had been laid off, and a retired police officer, Constant, said to Mercury News in an June 2011 interview that “Our budget says the public safety of the people of San Jose is an afterthought at best.”
By Megan Wescoat, Staff Write
Seniors, do not be alarmed.
The thought of college and a career path even appeared frightening to fellow teachers at first.
For AP biology and psychology teacher, Loren Schwinge, it was a confusing time.
“I was undeclared when I first entered college, and then pledged biology with the intent of becoming a vet. After doing some clinic work I realized that wasn't for me, but then fell in love with studying brains.”
Teaching was never her original plan, she said.
“I honestly had no plan. I only decided to become a teacher my second semester of my last year of school.”
For history teacher Ariana Rodriguez, things didn't start to become clear until the end of college.
“I decided to become a history teacher when I was a senior in college. I had such a good experience in high school and I really admired my U.S. History teacher, Mr. Johnson. I wanted to be just like him, and how he connected with his students. It didn't hurt that I love the subject matter I teach.”
“I intended to go into industry when I got my degree; I didn't consider teaching for many years," said chemistry teacher, Mark Kent, who was on a different path for many years, “and in fact I was an industrial chemist for twenty-four years before I considered teaching.”
It took many years for Kent to reach his current career path, “While I started as a quality control chemist, after two years I moved to research chemistry. After another two or three years I moved to process chemistry, and I was there for the rest of my career,”
Kents advises that graduating seniors participate in courses in other fields in college because they, “give exposure to other things that might prove to be even more interesting than your chosen major and can lead to a whole different plan for your life.”
Schwinge’s advice to graduating students is to understand that the major you declare does not necessarily define your future, “Don't feel like you have to have it all together! I had no clue what I was going to do my senior year of high school, but it all turned out okay for me. Just try lots of things and be open to your current plan changing. A lot.”
Photo by Emily Calderon
Linda Luna could be found working in the Snack Shack during middle and high school lunch.
By Emily Calderon, Staff Writer
She is the reason muffins and Arizona teas were added to UPA’s Energy Bar menu this year. She is the new teacher in charge of yearbook. She attended UPA as a student, started working at UPA as a supervisor last year, and her name is Linda Luna.
Q: Why did you decide to attend UPA as a student?
A: My mom worked at the church here, so me and my sister came. I entered my eighth grade year, that was 2008, the first year of UPA. [For] my senior year, I went to Mount Pleasant.
Q: Is there a lesson you learned here at UPA and applied to real life?
A: A lot of the teachers here are strict, and … [they] taught me that there [were] no excuses with giving late work. Going into the job force, you have to learn that as well.
Q: How did your first year as a supervisor go?
A: It was tough because … I was always scared of my teachers. Now I had to learn to call Mr. Yau Andrew and Mr. Daugherty Matt.
Since her first year, the Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Matt Daugherty, has seen noticeable changes at UPA. “The snack shack has become a profit center. It’s efficient [and] organized.” In addition to her other responsibilities, Daugherty said, “She was sort of the Webmaster last year and anytime the website needed to be updated, she did that.”
Q: How did you hear about an open job opportunity at UPA?
A: I was working at… the Harker Elementary School, and I was still in contact with [Director of Student Services] Andrew Yau … I got a call and he offered me the job.
“I always try to hire students or former students that I trust or I know will do a good job.” Yau said.
Q: Do you plan on continuing working at UPA?
A: I’m actually leaving [in December] because my family is moving to Texas. But [UPA alumnus] Martin Contreras [will] be taking over for me.
Q: What advice do you have for students?
A: I know this sounds cheesy, but life might not goes as planned, [yet] you should never give up on what you love. I say that because photography was always my passion and … now I’m [teaching] yearbook and doing weddings and maternity shoots.
By Emily Hung, A&E Editor
On October 29, a 6-foot-tall, three-part foldable divider was put up to secure the privacy of the girls’ bathroom by the gym.
There had been no previous intention of such an idea until the divider showed up in the office, brought by an anonymous donor.
Since then, the divider has been useful in making the girls’ bathroom a more private place.
“It eliminates people from looking in. Sometimes, it’s just tempting [for other students],” PE teacher Jesus Del Real said.
Eighth grade student Jacalyn Zweifler likes the divider being there because it protects her and her classmates from being seen while they change into their PE clothes.
“[I like the divider being there] because when girls need to change in the bathroom, [others] can actually open the door [to exit]. When the divider wasn’t there, we were afraid that by opening the door, the boys could see in and so when we have this divider it blocks off all views of looking in,” she said.
The doors of the boys’ and girls’ bathroom are directly opposite from each other so when one of the doors are open, it is quite visible what is happening inside.
“It protects a girl from being seen in a way that she doesn’t want to be seen,” substitute teacher Jessica Kern said.
Del Real also said that the girls have been changing much faster since the divider was put up.
“About 80 percent [of the girls change outside of the stalls], and by having the divider, they can change freely in the bathroom [and] not in little corners or behind the door where many have gotten hit,” Zweifler said.
Since the divider proved useful for the girls’ bathroom, Del Real is looking at the idea of another divider for the boys’ bathroom, even if it may not seem as useful to them.
“The boys often wear their PE shirts underneath [their uniforms] and their shorts underneath as well,” Del Real said.
This way, they can change without fear of exposing anything.
It is always better to be safe than sorry though.
“[The divider] is supposed to be up all day. Sometimes it falls, but if you know how to put it back up you can,” Del Real said.
By Tyler Jacobsen and Joshua Cheah, Managing Editor and Broadcast Editor
“Don’t forget your sticker!” the volunteer said as the woman started to walk away after having finished casting her vote for one of the presidential candidates.
Every 4 years citizens of our country gather together to cast their vote for the presidential candidate they believe will best serve the needs of the people and on measures that affect their community.
This process cannot be done without the help of volunteers, a role many students at UPA readily accepted.
Jacob Cayabyab, a junior at UPA, worked at one of the polling places on Election Day.
“I met tons of cool people and had a blast meeting the voters,” said Cayabyab.
Cayabyab enjoyed his time working the polls and was able to learn all the work that went into the election.
He said that even though he got paid, “it was a great experience learning just how important it is to vote.”
Cayabyab performed a variety of tasks, ranging from handing out stickers to checking signatures and addresses of the voters.
Asvin Desai, the precinct inspector at precinct 1038, volunteers to see how the process works.
“I wish I can repair the flaws as well as take pride in the expression of freedom,” said Desai.
Desai is motivated to help because he enjoys the democratic process of electing our leaders and he wants to help voters.
Junior Taelynn Roberson had never worked before, but enjoyed her time as an election officer.
“It was really exciting to see people showing up that were in my community -- literally living on my street -- that were so eager to vote that there was a line before the polls even opened,” said Roberson.
Not only did she have fun, but she had the opportunity to learn more about the democratic method.
“Helping out on election day definitely made me more aware of the process voting takes,” Roberson said.
Despite the political turmoil surrounding the candidates, the people at the polls all seemed to be in a good mood.
“I just like interacting with people because they were very friendly and thankful, regardless of the way they voted,” said Roberson.
By Megan Wescoat, Staff Writer
To celebrate the end of the second marking period, ASB held a carnival and food fair on Friday, Nov. 4.
“UPA wants to celebrate the hard work of all students,” ASB Advisor Andrew Yau said, “and the Carnival is meant to be a time where students can relax and have some fun at the end of each marking period.”
ASB has put an emphasis on having more fun on campus this year in order to help make students happier and to promote school spirit, Yau said.
According to the school calendar, ASB has scheduled five carnivals, 20 free dress days, and nine Friday lunch activities with freebie giveaways this year.
Sophomore ASB representative Meghana Chintala said a lot of planning went into the event.
“We scheduled meetings to discuss about the carnival,” Chintala said. “Preparations and plans were decided from the beginning of the year.”
Chintala also said the event was more successful compared to the first carnival held in September.
“We revised the problems that occurred in the first carnival and ensured that this one would be more organized and enjoyable,” she said.
There were carnival games, music, and an inflatable obstacle course. A few of UPA’s clubs even promoted fundraising.
“I didn’t participate in any games, but I got the food,” sophomore Keziah Godson said.
Godson also said she found out about the cultural club Unidad Poder Academico, which she described as “the one that was selling coconut drinks and Mexican bread.”
Selling at the carnival made an impact on some of the student body and inspired them to join clubs.
Junior Grace Edwards, inspired to join the Interact club, did not participate in a lot of the carnival events, but did participate in the bounce house racing.
“It was fun since I kept pulling the people back,” she joked.
To increase participation in carnival activities, Chintala, along with the rest of ASB, has become inspired to make upcoming carnivals even more enjoyable.
“Next time, we will try to get more people to participate and perhaps include more games and activities that everyone can be a part of,” Chintala said.
By Carlo Barrera, Features Editor
It was just another Monday at UPA when the lights went out unexpectedly, resulting in both the Horton and the Learning Center being in darkness.
The incident occurred during lunchtime at 12:45 pm; however, the power came back on at 12:50 pm, only lasting about 5 minutes.
The students were not completely in the dark, though, since at 12:49 the emergency lights came on.
The sudden predicament kept the administrators and supervisors on their toes, thus resulting in the evacuation of the students out of the gym and auditorium for their safety.
Precautions for future blackouts are using flashlights to light the hallways and emergency lights in classrooms and hallways.
“PG&E said it could have been an accident; they didn’t know," Cathedral of Faith Operations Manager Lynn Lazo said.
Photo courtesy of Kathy Ngo
UPA freshmen toured around Stanford college, visiting the Memorial Fountain in White Plaza.
By Diana Rendler, Production Manager
On Monday, Oct. 17, hundreds of UPA students from grade 7th through 11th walked off buses and onto college campuses throughout the Bay Area.
Every year, UPA students travel to different universities to explore and speak to alumni while evaluating whether they could envision themselves attending that school.
“I would have applied, but even if they rejected me or accepted me I’d not have shown as much interest; but now...I would hope to be accepted,” junior Samuel Indurkar said of UC Santa Cruz.
The feeling is mutual.
“The trip definitely put Stanford on my ‘colleges to attend list,’ something I wouldn't even consider before the trip,” freshman Kathy Ngo said.
Some schools continued to impress UPA students with their expansive access to knowledge.
“I would [go to San Jose State] because it is financially efficient, the biggest source of information is right next door, and [it has] a small-sized campus,” 7th grade student Jasmine Bowles said.
While a majority mentioned liking the laid back nature of college campuses, a lack of structure bothered one student.
“This trip helped me realize that I do not want to go to UC Berkeley,” sophomore D’Angelo Castillo said. “I got the opportunity to speak to alumni, and I concluded that it's way too big for my tastes, and it's also way too liberal ...”
Seeing the schools in person provided valuable insight into the atmosphere of the university, something unattainable through websites or class discussions.
“I could not have known that unless I actually went there,” said Indurkar.
Students can tell after the field trip whether the atmosphere of the university appeals to them.
“When we asked questions to the alumni, I noticed they were very well spoken, but still friendly,” Bowles said. “It made me think of [SJSU] as a place where it's almost like a community.”