End-of-Year Accolades

Danny Stock

That’s a wrap…Wait! There are more High School student accolades to share before we close on the 2021-22 school year. In April and May, GDS High School students were recognized for demonstrating excellence in and beyond the classroom. In some cases, their good work—on display for the internal community—merits sharing more broadly.  

Euro Challenge

Congratulations to the GDS Euro Challenge Team on their fourth place finish in the nation!

The team of Amelia Holmwood ’24, Darwin Gu ’24, Hercules Zhang ’24, Mark Orr ’24, and their coach Pierce DeCain ’22 powered through the semi-finals and finals with their proposals for addressing unemployment and inflation within the Eurozone nation of France. The Euro Challenge website notes that the competition is centered upon European economic and monetary policy and seeks to engage young people in learning about “Euro Area” markets and other economic issues

Faculty advisor Topher Dunne (High School History and Social Science teacher) said much of the success of the club was driven by Pierce. “This was my first year with the team,” Topher said, having stepped into the role on the shoulders of past advisor Sue Ikenberry. “It was very much Pierce's leadership, in my opinion, that made things click. One element that came together was the group's comfort as a functioning unit, where students could pose possible questions to the presentation that they had crafted and then proceed to ask one another as practice for the competition itself.”

“Our team functioned well thanks to the efficient allocation of the workload,” Pierce said. “Different members of our team focused on writing different sections of our economic proposal, so during the second stage of each presentation, the Q&A, they handled questions relating to their section. For example, team member Mark Orr fleshed out our public transit proposal, so he handled transit questions from the judges.”

Additionally (and for a bit of European economics that may not mean anything to you), the team demonstrated not only policy prowess but also a keen understanding of how to connect with their audience. Pierce explained, “One proposal that went particularly well was to increase interest rates on Main Refinancing Operations at the European Central Bank. This proposal gave us an opportunity to detail and praise the utility of a common continental monetary policy, flattering the judges and the European Project.”

Congratulations, Euro Challenge team!

Learn more about the Euro Challenge at https://www.euro-challenge.org/.

Chinese-language Journal

Thanks to High School Chinese teacher Min Wang for sharing this news:

Six GDS Chinese language students have published in the top North American Chinese-language journal, the Juhe Supplement. Congratulations to Daria Hoehn-Saric ’25 (韩达莲), Sofia Sevak ’23 (司淑菲), Adriano Arioti ’24 (艾亚诺), Shai Dweck ’22 (代善), Noah Kubler ’22 (古乐安), and Kaiden Jungwei Yu ’23 (俞仲威) for their selection. The journal, which mostly publishes essays from Chinese language students at the university/college level, received 96 submissions from 28 programs this year. GDS had a strong showing of essays published in previous years as well: : 3 in 2019, 4 in 2020, and 4 in 2021.  

Augur Bit

Thanks to Augur Bit faculty advisor Julia Fisher for sharing this news:

“Congrats to the 2021 Bit staff for winning some very impressive awards. For the last four years running, The Augur Bit has won an award from the American Scholastic Press Association. Last year, the Bit won First Place with Special Merit, its highest award to date. This year tops that. How, you might wonder? The previous award, which the Bit also won again this year, is specifically for schools of roughly our size (though it's worth noting that we're at the very bottom of the range, in a category that includes schools nearly twice our size). This year, the Bit was one of just seven schools nationwide to win the award for Most Outstanding High School Newspaper—a category that does not discriminate by size—which is the highest honor in this competition. 

“I'm enormously proud of the staff. The paper published more than ever before, and its staff of about 60 is, to my knowledge, the biggest it's ever been. This award is testament to the Bit's depth of talent and commitment, hard work by a bevy of section editors, and the remarkable leadership of last year's editors-in-chief, Seth Riker and Ethan Wolin. Congrats to all.”

View the names of Augur Bit staff.


The High School literary magazine Grasslands published a spring issue at the end of April. 

Grasslands editors Julien Berman ’22, Meyer Leff ’22, Adina Siff ’23, and  Annabel Williams ’22 put together a collection of poetry, prose, and a crossword puzzle by writers Daniel Farber ’23, Julian Galkin ’22, Leila Jackson ’22, Nick Penniman ’22, and college counselor Jordi Rosenman as well as Julien and Adina. The edition also featured artwork in mixed and digital media from Edie Carrey ’23, Ava Blum ’23, Jake Markarian ’22, Ally Brangham ’23, and college counselor Fatmata Koroma as well as Annabel. John Burghardt is the faculty advisor.

“The writers and artists in the GDS community continue to astonish me with their remarkable creativity and wit,” said Julien, one of the three graduating editors. “Being a part of Grasslands has been a rewarding experience, and I am very proud of everything the magazine has accomplished this year.”

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