Speed Read

December 16, 2016

2017 developments

 

With 2016 almost done, it should already be clear it’s one for the history books. The Rio de Janeiro Olympics; Donald Trump’s odds-defying election as President; the deaths of innumerable pop-culture icons —all that can make it easy to forget about 2017.

 

The reason it has gotten short shrift is partly that 2017 is an “off-year”—a year without either a presidential election or a midterm. However, both New Jersey and Virginia have their gubernatorial races next year. In the former case, Governor Chris Christie will be leaving office.

 

“It’s not really an event, but observing how the Democrats respond to losing will be interesting,” AP US Government teacher John Carmichael said. “Some on the far left are suggesting a left-leaning Tea Party- type wing is necessary. That could certainly be interesting to watch.”

 

Construction in area

 

It can often seem like Polaris is under perpetual construction nowadays. However, come next year, at least one of those projects will reach its final stretch. The IKEA whose development was first announced on Jan. 28, 2016, according to the Columbus Dispatch, is due to have its “grand opening” in the summer of 2017.

The store is being built on 33 acres of land previously occupied by German Amphitheater, according to NBC4. It will feature “10,000 exclusively designed items, three model home interiors, 50 room settings, a supervised children’s play area and a 450-seat restaurant.”

 

IKEA’s potential impact on the area, including its effect on traffic and commerce, remains open to speculation. “There will be some surprises,” said Delaware County Commissioner Gary Merrell, “but we’ll deal with the issues as they come.”

 

National merit finalists

 

After taking the PSAT, most OOHS students stop thinking about it. For some, though, the PSAT can result in unexpected prestige. About 16,000 students nationwide qualify as National Merit Scholarship Semi finalists; this year, OLSD has 14.

Senior Corey Simmerer qualified for Semifinalist with a score of 1460. “The day results came out,” Simmerer said, “I got called down to the office and my guidance counselor gave me instructions on how to apply to become a National Merit Finalist.”

 

To become a Finalist, students must submit an essay. “Which students have qualified as Finalists doesn’t become public until February,” Assistant Principal Jessica Mamais said. “Most years, [Orange’s number of finalists] fluctuates between one and four.”

 

It remains to be seen which of OLSD’s 14 might be able to count themselves among that number.

 

Anti-Trump protests

 

Since the start of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, protests against his perceived bigotry have been present. His victory has only intensified this: major demonstrations have appeared in 14 cities, according to the New York Times. Of the smaller protests, one took place Nov. 14 at OOHS.

“We were there due to a variety of reasons,” senior Emnet Hebo said. “Some of us were there as women, or African- Americans, or because of concern over climate change, but we all realized that this election result isn’t going to be good for us. We protested as a way to make our voices heard.”

 

According to the New York Times, hundreds of NYC students also took to the streets that day. One of them said, “If our president cannot be kind, empathetic and intelligent, we can.”

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