Jesuit Chronicle

COVID-19 cancels and postpones Spring at Jesuit


Graduation is postponed due to the coronavirus with uncertainity on what will happen in the future to celebrate the graduates.

Spring at Jesuit is usually filled with activities and events, but due to COVID-19, all in-person events have been cancelled or postponed. 

Some of the most important events of the school year are now in question, including Graduation, while Prom is already cancelled. 

“The biggest event that we needed to cancel was prom,” ASB teacher Dr. Exley said. “Students were pretty upset that their prom was canceled, but seemed to understand the canceling of the event based on us not having school and a need to practice social distancing. We are working on different events and activities for graduation weekend along with administration as a way to celebrate the class of 2020. We also will continue with weekly challenges to get students engaged and involved.”

Many seniors do not know what the future will hold to celebrate them, but Principal Hogan hopes to stay optimistic with students and families about an in-person graduation. 

“On May 1, we hosted the first-ever Twilight Parade/college-decision day celebration,” Mr. Hogan said. “We will be hosting a series of events on May 29-31.We are getting ready to announce that we HOPE to hold an in-person Commencement on Cronin Field on July 11. Not fully confirmed yet. If we are allowed to do that by the Governor, we will likely also have a Baccalaureate of some kind (maybe livestreamed) that morning.”

Although Principal Hogan hopes for a July 11th date for a commencement celebration, Governor Kate Brown has extended large gatherings of more than 25 people through September. 

This could all change if the state progresses to a vaccine or a reliable treatment for COVID-19 earlier than September, according to Governor Kate Brown. 

As for now though, it looks like until a further push for treatments and vaccines come to Oregon, big gatherings in the summer will be restricted. 

Junior Mackenzie Convey will be missing her first prom, and reflects on how she was feeling when she heard the news. 

“I was very upset and sad, because I thought in the beginning of quarantine that there still could have been a prom and we could go back to school,” Convey said. “Now I’m still sad, but I know I’ll still have a senior prom and that this is not my last dance.”

With uncertainty for the future, the student government class is doing its best to  connect Jesuit while in quarantine. 

“We have been trying to keep the Jesuit Community active through our instagram account and keeping the Jesuit Community informed of different activities that are happening even though we are not at school,” Dr. Exley. Said. “During the first week of Digital Learning, we started posting two challenges a week on the Jesuit instagram. We also created the Jesuit Senior instagram where Seniors can post about their plans for next year and created cards to be sent to teachers thanking them for their work during Teacher Appreciation Week on behalf of the Jesuit Student Body.”

Junior Damon Grim was in student government this year and was recently elected in the ASB cabinet for his senior year. He has been participating in the student government Zoom classes and helping to plan future events.

Once things are lifted, you will see many more things being planned to celebrate the seniors and juniors,” Grim said. 

Student government’s main goal, while school remains cancelled, is to connect the Jesuit community and remind Jesuit students of the strong community.

“Right now, our main ‘project’ or focus has been on the Jesuit Community and trying to remind students that we are all in this together,” Dr. Exley said. “We have also begun to discuss different service opportunities that we can do to help the larger community as we all deal with Covid-19. [I want] student government to be a place that helps remind Jesuit Students of our strong community and our many different connections to each other.”

Also as most student’s events and activities continue to be either postponed or cancelled, Principal Hogan shares how students are helping people struggling due to COVID-19 and the importance of volunteering. 

“We had a sandwich drive for Blanchet House and Storm McGraw and our Drama Dept have been making masks and gowns,” Mr. Hogan said. “Students like Manavi Thakur have created their own service/fundraising drives.” 

About the Writer
Photo of Annie Landgraf
Annie Landgraf, Alumni 2019-2020

Annie Landgraf is a managing editor for journalism. She was born in Lake Oswego, Oregon and went to Lake Oswego schools her whole life before...

COVID-19 changes the course for college admission



College News

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COVID-19 changes the course for college admission 

Dozens of colleges and universities are altering their admission process amidst the coronavirus.

Major changes include the onset of test optional admission, adjustments in confirmation deadlines, enhancement of virtual access to campus tours, information presentations, and video/text chat with admission representatives.

These changes were made after  the government’s stay-at-home policy due to  COVID-19.

These new alterations to college admission will most likely affect upperclassmen. For seniors, it will affect their final decision on where to attend college.

“I anticipate the change in confirmation deadlines (June 1 rather than May 1 for example) are likely to only impact the class of ’20,” college counselor Mr. Johnson said. “Broadly, campus visits are cancelled, and some college orientationevents have gone virtual.  I believe that COVID-19 may prompt students and families to rethink their final college decision, perhaps desiring to be closer to home, anticipating changes in what college will look like in fall 2020.”

Senior Hannah Stream is going to Colorado University at Boulder. She was one of the few lucky people to already visit her college and make a decision.

“I was lucky I went early enough that I still got my in-person visit, but most schools have been sending constant emails that they can only do virtual campus tours and from what I’ve heard, it’s just not the same,” Stream said. “This is when people were going to go on college visits to have that reassurance that they were making the right choice for the next four years, and not being able to walk around and talk to people face to face makes it that more difficult to make an already major decision.”

As seniors figure out what college and finalize their decisions, juniors deal with early admission issues due to the coronavirus.

“[Juniors are dealing with] test optional planning, no campus visits, reduction in summer experience (work, service, internship, etc.) opportunities,” Mr. Johnson said. “The most impactful is the onset of test optional admission.”

Going test optional due to COVID-19 has been notable as the biggest change in college admission. Many well-known colleges have made the change, including but not limited to: University of Oregon, Oregon State University, All UC schools, Portland State University, TCU, Tulane, and many more.

“The onset of test optional could be more long lasting,” Mr. Johnson said. “Some colleges are just going test optional for one year and then reevaluating, others are going test optional for three years and then reevaluating, and others are going test optional after significant deliberation, well before the COVID-19 outbreak.  While the motivation to go test optional varies – lack of testing opportunities primarily – many colleges are going test optional for the long term because they believe that standardized testing is not the best predictor of success in college. There are also many equity issues surrounding standardized testing such as test prep, socioeconomic factors, etc.”

With many colleges already going test optional and predictably more on the way, a new attitude on going test optional begs the question: Is it even worth it to take the SAT/ ACT?

“Due to the fact that not all colleges will be going test optional, and that the test optional status may be temporary in some cases, I would generally suggest that students should take the SAT and/or ACT in the case that it is required by their prospective colleges,” Mr. Johnson said. “It is a good idea for students to talk with their college advisor regarding test selection, and test optional decisions.”

Many juniors feel the pressure of having to study and take the SAT/ACT as dates get rescheduled and are for colleges becoming test optional.

“I feel like I am at a disadvantage taking the SAT/ACT right now because if I take it in the summer that means that I would have not been in school for three months,” junior Hunter Redding said. “There is already so much going on and I’m also having to navigate online school, so my focus for the SAT/ACT is not as strong as it was.”

As upperclassmen experience different struggles with college due to the coronavirus. Mr. Johnson provides advice for college and what people can still do at home.

“Utilize the many virtual tour and presentation options that have been developed by college admission offices,” Mr. Johnson said. “Juniors and seniors are encouraged to review the Canvas college planning courses – which include a Module titled “College Planning Info in Response to Coronavirus (COVID-19). There is also a page focusing on “How to “Visit” a College During Campus Closure.”  The Visit page includes some great suggestions on how to learn more about a college…at a distance.”

About the Writer
Photo of Annie Landgraf
Annie Landgraf, Alumni 2019-2020

Annie Landgraf is a managing editor for journalism. She was born in Lake Oswego, Oregon and went to Lake Oswego schools her whole life before...

Chloe Foerster races to the top to win titles in Cross Country and Track & Field


Choe Foerster during her state meet for track running the 4 by 4 relay


Chloe Foerster races to the top to win titles in

cross country and track & field

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As track season starts up again, sophomore Chloe Foerster has already proven her varsity position with many titles for Cross Country and Track & Field.

  In her freshman season, Foerster earned 3rd in districts and 7th in State for Cross Country and won state in the 800m and 4 by 4 for Track & Field.

“A big goal last year for me was to get a state title,” Foerster said. “I worked really hard and I achieved that, so I was really proud of myself.”

Foerster has enjoyed running since 6th grade and was on the varsity cross country team as early as the summer before her freshman year.

“I went on beach trips during the summer and those trips have been one of my most favorite memories in cross country,” Foerster said.

This year, Foerster won cross country districts, earned 4th in State, and placed 6th place at Regionals.

“Placing individually in state for Cross Country is something that I have always wanted to do, and it was something that was a goal of mine,” Foerster said.

Foerster has high hopes for this Track & Field season and big ambitions.

“I hope that I can win state again in the 800m and 4 by 4,” Foerster said. “Also I want to continue to get faster and stronger each season and get a P.R.” 

Despite her running accomplishments, it hasn’t been easy as  she has had to deal with injury struggles . 

“Last year during track season, I was also playing soccer so I got a bunch of injuries including my ankle but towards the end I recovered and it was good,” Foerster said. “This year during cross country, I couldn’t run for  a month or so because I had a knee injury.”

Foerster has been able to get through these hurdles and continue to be a strong athlete and teammate. 

“She works harder than anyone else,”  said junior Olivia Silenzi, who is also on the varsity Cross Country and Track and Field team.

“She will never take an easy day. If she doesn’t feel good or if she just wants to go easy she will always push through that and go hard that day. She is very driven and it pays off.”

“She is very driven and competitive,” Silenzi said . “She is very positive and encouraging. She is never negative and she is very funny. We are always usually laughing about something.”

About the Writer
Photo of Annie Landgraf
Annie Landgraf, Alumni 2019-2020

Annie Landgraf is a managing editor for journalism. She was born in Lake Oswego, Oregon and went to Lake Oswego schools her whole life before...

Blind Date: Two juniors hope to strike love


Gwynne Olson

Juniors Damon Grim and Amanda Kerr share dinner during their Blind Date.


Annie Landgraf

Blind date: Two juniors hope to strike love

In honor of Valentine’s Day, the journalism staff surprised two singletons, junior Damon Grim and junior Amanda Kerr with a romantic date in hope for love to spark.

On a crisp January night, Grimm and Kerr met at what the Journalism staff thought was the most romantic place: Big Al’s.

Grim decided to go for the classy serious look with a full suit, whereas Kerr opted for the casual and comfy look with sweats and sweater. 

“I like to impress a girl with how I dress,” Grim said. “I mean, do you think they are going to be impressed if I wore some sweatpants? I don't know who would ever wear that on a date.”

This caused an early awkwardness, but the journalism staff moved them quickly to bowling to ease the tensions.

“It wasn’t really a competition, but bowling was super fun,” Grim said. “I got to show off my athletic skills.”

After an intense game of bowling, the two were hungry for dinner. With the beautiful tones of bowlers and children, it was clear the date was heating up. 

With mozzarella sticks and cheesy fries across the table, the date took a serious turn, where they talked about their interests.

“We have a lot in common through our accomplished athletic careers,” Kerr said. “I love to ski every weekend and Damon is a varsity track star.”

After their romantic dim lit dinner, both Grim and Kerr looked upstairs and found lots of arcade games.

With Grim blushing cheek to cheek, he took Kerr to play his favorite game: Dance Dance Revolution.

Showing off their dance moves, their undeniable chemistry became evident.

After the few more arcade games, the date was dying down, so the journalism staff decided to sit Grim down and ask how the overall date went.

“So I think the date overall went pretty well,” Grim said. “I think in the beginning it was definitely a little awkward, but I mean when it works, it works.”

With Grim’s confidence of it being an incredible date, this begs the question: What will happen next?

“It was a little awkward in the beginning but I think towards the end, during the dance dance revolution, we really clicked,” Kerr said. “I would for sure go on another date with him.”

Only time will tell if these love birds decide to soar, but as of now, I think we can all agree they we totally ship Damanda. 

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About the Writer
Photo of Annie Landgraf
Annie Landgraf, Alumni 2019-2020

Annie Landgraf is a managing editor for journalism. She was born in Lake Oswego, Oregon and went to Lake Oswego schools her whole life before...

Sinstas provide online “diary” for users




Sinstas provide online "diary" for users

With most teenagers already on social media, sinstas become a way for high schoolers to share more personal information with close friends.

Sinstas, which is the compound of “second” and “instagram”, is another added instagram account, popular with high school students .

On a typical sinsta account, people will share more personal information that shows the followers a more authentic side to them.

“I like that I can be more of myself because it’s people that I trust and people that I know I can just be myself around,” junior Em Beaton said. “I know I won’t be judged by them.”

A sinsta account will not have many followers attached to them due to people sharing more daily personal experiences.

“A lot of my close friends and people that I think would share the same humor as me follow me,” junior Mackenzie Convery said.

A sinsta is a place for users to be more of themselves, which has caused a shift for a main instagram account to be edited so users can reveal a perfect image for their followers.

“On my sinsta, I am goofy and post whatever and it’s fun and silly because I know everyone on it,” Beaton said. “I don’t really think about my posts and I don’t edit them or anything. On my main, I try to be the best person I can be, even if it’s not who I really am. Since I have so many followers on instagram, it is hard to post funny, authentic photos, because I don’t know every single follower.”

People will also use a sinsta as a social media diary to vent about any struggles going on in their lives.

“Some day’s if I’ve had a bad day or took a hard test, or whatever, I will post something on my sinsta,” Convery said. “It can be a place where I can just vent and let my followers know what is going on in my life.”

This use of a sinsta being a “diary” can invite the opportunity of drama.

“People can say bad things about each other or talk about people behind their backs on their sinsta posts, and you might think it’s about you or not,” Beaton said. “[This] could start a lot of drama.”

This begs the question: is having a sinsta beneficial or hindering to highschoolers?

“Having a sinsta has helped me in high school connect with my close friends about things

happening in my daily life, whether it’s something funny, serious, or fun,” Beaton said. “I am able to post something about my life that is either good or bad, and have my close friends look at it and respond with no judgement.”

Others don’t see any benefits or disadvantages of having a sinsta.

“I don’t think it affects me,” Convery said. “It doesn’t make me better or make me worse. It is just something to laugh about with my friends and look back at.”

A sinsta is private for the user and touches on normal issues that are common to teenagers like tension with parents, anger with school, or fights with friends. As a parent, this could be troubling knowing that their kid is letting emotions out into the “social media world.” 

“I told my mom that I had a sinsta,” Beaton said. “I told her it was just a second instagram account to connect with close friends and post funny pictures. Even though I told her I had a sinsta, my mom does not follow it because I don’t want her seeing all my posts.”

Even though most parents or authoritative figures know about sinstas, it is uncommon for them to follow a teenager’s sinsta, mainly because it is followed only by close friends of the user. With a sinsta being popular with mostly teenagers, it also brings up the question: Does a sinsta stays with teenagers until they become an adult or are they temporary accounts?

“As of now, I don’t know if I will have a sinsta in five years or so,” Convery said. “I feel like older people that I know don’t have one, so I feel like when I get older, I will use it less and less and eventually stop using it.” 

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About the Writer
Photo of Annie Landgraf
Annie Landgraf, Alumni 2019-2020

Annie Landgraf is a managing editor for journalism. She was born in Lake Oswego, Oregon and went to Lake Oswego schools her whole life before...

New NCAA rule allows athletes to profit



By: Annie LAndgraf

New NCAA rule allows athletes to profit

A new California bill will allow college athletes to profit off their name, image, and likeness. 

The new law runs contrary to the N.C.A.A rules prohibiting athletes against profiting from their sport while in college. 

“I think this bill being passed is a good first step in the change that needs to happen in college athletics,” Jesuit alumni and former University of Oregon football player, Doug Brenner said. “However, because the N.C.A.A is still the governing body of college athletics it is unclear what this bill will actually change. I’m hoping this bill starts a conversation about what could be improved for student athletes.”

The bill pertains only to California schools, which is one of the reasons that it is unclear how it will affect college athletics in other states. 

“You can’t have different rules among different states,” athletic director Mr. Hughes said. “So let's say for example, there is an elite basketball player that being recruited out of high school and is being recruited to UCLA and Michigan State, well he knows that at UCLA, he could earn money of his signature, that gives a huge competitive advantage to California schools in the recruiting process. So much so that it will not be allowed to stand.”

Even though the N.C.A.A is still coming to terms with this new bill, it sparks the question of whether college athletes should get paid for playing.

Former Oregon offensive lineman Doug Brenner played with the Ducks from 2013-2017 season and agrees with this new change in college sports.

“Every student athlete I have ever known thinks that the N.C.A.A can and should do better,” Brenner said. “In the 2015 season we won the pac-12 championship, the rose bowl, and went to the national championship game. Because we had such a successful season, the coaches all received bonuses of about one million dollars. I remember thinking it wasn’t fair that coaches get bowl bonuses and performance bonuses but the players can’t. That same year Oregon football brought in about 70 million dollars of revenue to the university, and I remember thinking it's not right that student athletes have to live on McDonald’s and ramen noodles while the schools, NCAA, and coaches are all making millions.”

Jaiden McClellan, a senior committed to playing soccer at Westpoint next year, thinks this bill could benefit college sports as well.

“I think that it should've been made a long time ago, because when you’re a student athlete and everyone around you is getting paid like the coaches and staff, they are making a lot of money off your student athletes that are not getting anything,” McClellan said. “Especially in college as a student athlete, I know that I have no time to hang out, so there would be no way that I could get a job, so the idea of getting sponsors would benefit me and help me to get through college.”

As of now, there is no clear idea of when or if this bill will even get passed. Many people question the fairness this would have to every player that is on a specific team.

“This might be fair to the .5% elite athletes on a team, the Lebron James of the world, I think it can be properly argued that for those elite athletes by going to play college, the university is making a lot of money off of those few rare elite athletes,” Hughes said. “However, in my opinion, for 99.5% or higher percent of full scholarship athletes in college, they are getting a spectacular deal. Free college tuition for four years to play college athletics.”

This new bill will provoke a conversation about the future college athletics. 

“I hope this will open up the door for negotiations with the N.C.A.A, to make student athletes lives better,” Brenner said. On October 29th, the NCAA voted unanimously to implement the new rule of athletes profiting off their name, image, and likeness. The board hopes to get this rule into effect by January 2021. 

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About the Writer
Photo of Annie Landgraf
Annie Landgraf, Alumni 2019-2020

Annie Landgraf is a managing editor for journalism. She was born in Lake Oswego, Oregon and went to Lake Oswego schools her whole life before...

Jesuit’s New Guide Dog


By: Annie Landgraf

Guide dog paws his way into our hearts

For the next ten months, Jesuit will have a new member on campus, a yellow lab named Neutrino.

Neutrino is a five-month old puppy, training to be a guide dog by Martha Cope, the athletic secretary.

“I did this years ago with my oldest daughter and we raised eight puppies,” Cope said. “She went to school here, so her whole junior year she brought her dog to school.”

Neutrino will be with Cope until he is about 14-16 months, after which he will then train to become a certified guide dog.

“[Neutrino] will go to the guide dog school in Boring, Oregon and get more formal training and that’s where they will determine if he actually becomes a guide dog,” Cope said. “Only about 50% of the puppies who start out make it as guide dogs because it is really hard.”

Neutrino has been on campus most days.

“It works out well in my position because I don’t have any responsibilities for students, especially when he was little I had to take him out a lot, and if I was in a classroom obviously that wouldn’t work out very well,” Cope said. “There are a lot of teachers at other schools that do this, but they usually have someone else start the puppy, is what it’s called, until it’s old enough to be taken to school.”

Raising a guide dog is similar to raising a regular puppy.

“One of the other parts is that we go on outings with the group to different things that we wouldn’t otherwise do,” Cope said. “Like we went to the Saturday Night market and took the MAX there, because they have to know how to go on a MAX transit bus. So he’s been on a MAX train, he’s been on a bus, he’ll hopefully go on an airplane. So socializing them and just exposing him to all kinds of things, he goes to restaurants with me, he can go anywhere.”

Jesuit is not new to the idea of having dogs on campus before.

“We actually have had therapy dogs on campus on a couple of occasions,” principal Paul Hogan said. “We did it a couple times during exams in January and once when he had a death on campus, we had a number of therapy dogs.”

As of now, there are no dogs that are at Jesuit full time, whether that is therapy dogs, guide dogs, or security dogs.

“What we decided is that there are some people allergic to dogs or some people that are scared of dogs even if they’re super friendly,” Hogan said. “We decided on an unwritten policy a number of years ago, to allow dogs on leashes outdoors at ball games, particularly at baseball or softball, as long as they are on a leash and not barking or pooping on campus, that type of stuff.”

Neutrino is on campus for the rest of the year and then will leave in July or August. Make sure you say hi when you have the chance.

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About the Writer
Photo of Annie Landgraf
Annie Landgraf, Alumni 2019-2020

Annie Landgraf is a managing editor for journalism. She was born in Lake Oswego, Oregon and went to Lake Oswego schools her whole life before...

Jesuit’s lack of treatment-based education perpetuates addiction stigma


Addiction: Education and Treatment for High Schools that Face a Potential Crisis


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Chief Editor

JUUL usage among high school students has inspired concern about the reemergence of nicotine addiction. With this increased concern comes a need to examine the defects of current addiction education and stigma—defects that Jesuit is by no means immune to.

Many high schools, including Jesuit, offer widespread preventative education for addiction. Preventative education teaches students about the addictive properties and harmful physical, mental and emotional effects of various substances. In health classes, teachers have begun placing an emphasis on e-cigarettes in particular, encouraging students to initiate their own questions. “I think it’s important to have vaping education, but I also think it’s important for kids to ask the questions they want to know,” Health teacher Ms. Kaempf said. “I want my students to have ownership over their own learning.” While understanding the science behind addiction remains a crucial deterrent for teenagers considering experimentation with substances, it does little to help kids already struggling with addiction, where symptoms are beyond their control.

The other side of addiction education is treatment education: education that focuses on assessing treatment and rehabilitation options for existing addictions.Education on addiction resources, including school resources, may seem geared only towards addicted students, but treatment education provides important information to the entire school community. It confronts stigma and misinformation surrounding people suffering from addiction, and it helps students feel safe coming forward about potentially addictive behaviors in themselves or their peers, rather than leaving addiction assessments to adults on campus.

For faculty, detecting seriously-addicted students is often difficult. Given that most adults on campus are only able to observe and look out for students during the school week, faculty have limited insight into students’ substance usage and level of drug dependence, including nicotine. On-campus drug usage, although a serious breach of school rules, is one of the few methods the administration has to identify struggling students.

“If a student is doing these things frequently on campus, it leads me to believe they have a problem,” said Mr. Maxie, Vice Principal of Academics and Student Life. “I am first and foremost concerned about their health and well-being. I want you to get the help that you need, which means I’m going to connect you with your counselor and hopefully together we’ll be able to find out if there’s a true issue there.”

On-campus drug usage typically involves suspension, and in most circumstances students are still allowed to be part of the community. However, the administration addresses drug use on a case-by-case basis, depending on a student’s prior discipline record.

While Jesuit has not standardized treatment-focused education in any particular class, Mr. Maxie stresses that the administration prioritizes directing students it knows are struggling with substance abuse towards their counselors to develop a treatment plan that is effective for them, whether that’s rehabilitation, counseling, or other methods to treat addiction. 

School counselors are not considered mandatory reporters regarding illegal substance abuse, and students can come forward about problems about substance addiction without necessarily having those issues referred back to the administration or to law enforcement. Counselors also serve as the primary contact between outside psychiatrists and rehabilitation centers for a variety of mental illnesses, including addiction.

Among the student body, however, rumors and a lack of clarification by the administration have led students to believe the protocol for substance abuse is entirely centered around consequences. No class emphasizes giving students information on any of the internal and external resources Jesuit has to help students caught using substances—leaving many with the assumption that those resources don’t exist at all.

“I do think when there’s actual instances of drug addiction or nicotine usage in the Jesuit community that we fail to address the issue, which is the addiction itself and not the fact that rules were broken,” junior Lucy Keane said. “I think it’s centered around consequences like suspension. I think it would be more beneficial if rehabilitation resources and resources that would support the student in overcoming this challenge they are facing were more available.”

"No class emphasizes giving students information on any internal and external resources Jesuit has to help students caught using substances—leaving many with the assumption that those resources don't exist at all."

The misinformation that surrounds Jesuit’s role in treatment assistance also helps explain the minimal amount of students who reach out about addiction-related problems. 

“We have not had many students or families contact us looking for resources to help deal with addiction of any kind, partly because of the stigma [around addiction] and they don’t want the school to know, but hopefully because they are actively seeking their own programs,” Principal Mr. Hogan said.

The stigma that prevents students from coming forward links back to the flawed standards for addiction education. In light of climbing addiction rates, Oregon implemented more standards in 2018 for presenting information on the risks and problems associated with addiction to students (The Lund Report). However, no expectations—either at the state level or in Jesuit’s current preventative curriculum—clearly address possible treatments or the specific consequences school has in place for substance abuse.

Without education on Jesuit’s efforts to treat addiction, students are unlikely to assume they will be cared for by their counselors or the administration if they are caught with substances or come forward on their own. 

When objective information on how to curb addiction, not just how to avoid it, is neglected in health classes, students experiencing addiction have trouble evaluating different treatment options. For nicotine addiction from e-cigarettes in particular, medical treatment options commonly prescribed to students may have no evidence to confirm their efficacy.

Nicotine-replacement mechanisms meant to minimize the symptoms of withdrawal, such as gum and patches, have little evidence for lessening nicotine dependence in young adults addicted to vaping (Time).

Without a comprehensive education on addiction treatment, or substantial counselor aid in assessing their options, addicted teenagers often feel too stigmatized to seek additional help in assessing treatment options. They often end up choosing the first treatment method their doctor suggests, which may be non-evidence based (Vox). Even more likely, students may feel too ashamed or in denial to seek treatment at all, especially if their parents haven’t recognized any addiction symptoms. 

While Jesuit may only rarely have incidents with students experiencing addiction, of the 20% of high school students who vape on a regular basis (Washington Post), many may be developing a dangerous dependence. Jesuit students have received enough education to recognize that dependence, but few have learned how to combat it. Some likely have yet to come forward or seek help.

Treatment education, alongside education on the science and risks behind addiction, should become an emphasized aspect of the health curriculum and a central component of schoolwide efforts to improve addiction education. Students should know much more about the resources available to them in the counseling department for dealing with addiction and other mental illnesses. The consequences of substance use should be honestly portrayed to students and shouldn’t remain subject to rumor and conjecture. 

A straightforward explanation about how addiction can be treated, and in cases of on-campus drug usage, what both the punishments and treatments offered to students are, by no means encourages more students to abuse substances. 

Having a clear picture of the realities of having an addiction, namely treatment, will enable students to rationally self-assess their behaviors and choose appropriate, evidence-based treatment. Being informed on their available resources within Jesuit will empower students whose symptoms and usage are “undetectable“, particularly common among e-cigarette users, to come forward with less shame or uncertainty.

As for the students who aren’t currently struggling with substances, understanding that addiction treatments exist even within our school, even for high schoolers, will help eliminate addiction’s reputation as an ugly, incurable disease. 

Seeing addiction from a solution-based standpoint, alongside the cautionary information that preventative education offers, is integral for eliminating the stigma around addiction that prevents others from seeking treatment. Addiction is so widespread, and nicotine addiction is increasing so rapidly among high schoolers, that no student should remain ignorant about various treatment resources.

About the Writer
Photo of Shawna Muckle
Shawna Muckle, Alumni 2017-2020

Shawna Muckle, 17, is a senior at Jesuit High School. She has been a member of the Chronicle staff for three years in various capacities, and she is currently...

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