This article features two categories of good news from High School and Middle School:
• Best in the city
• GXRLS in STEM
Academic & Student Org Highlights
• Ethics Bowl
• Writing Awards
Best in the City
On Monday, former Augur Bit Editor-in-Chief Ethan Wolin ’23 won the Journalism Education Association's D.C. Journalist of the Year award. With this honor, the judges have determined Ethan to be the best high school journalist in the city! Augur Bit faculty advisor Julia Fisher explained that the contest considers more than just students’ reporting and writing. The judges take into account “leadership, editing, design, photography, knowledge of law and ethics, audience engagement, commitment to diversity, and more,” she said. During his four years with the High School student newspaper, Ethan has stewarded the development of a weekly newsletter, an expanded online presence, robust development in its sports and photography coverage, increased student participation, the creation of a summer boot camp for students interested in journalism at GDS, and more. Congratulations, Ethan!
GXRLS in STEM
…was created to “bring together gxrls* across the world and inspire us to pursue our interests in STEM.” This February’s issue, which focuses on the human body, features contributions from Elizabeth Seton High School, Jackson-Reed High School, Sidwell Friends School, and GDS and was overseen by Co-Editor-in-Chief Lucie Johnson ’23. We invite you to read the following articles from GDS writers:
- “Music and Your Mood,” Delaney McDermott ’24
- “Why You Need to Stop Stressing About Being Stressed,” Noor Ramzy ’23 (GDS)
- “Interview with Professor Mara Aspinall,” Sadie Foer ’23
- “Dreams with Respect to Brain Functions,” Leah Li ‘24
- “Combating the Mental Deterioration Associated with Alzheimer’s,” Alex Wood ‘23
- “Beyond ABO and Rhesus: A New Blood Group,” Lucie Johnson ‘23
Also, enjoy the original puzzle by GDS cruciverbalist Lina Stensland ‘23 as well as original art by GDS artists Noor Ramzy ’23, Sora Walker ’25, and Zaira Chowdhury ’23. This issue was edited by GDS editors Kate Toufanian ’25, Katie Young ’23, Liz Higday ’25, Lucie Johnson ’23, and Sora Walker ’23. GRXLS in STEM’s GDS faculty advisors are Elaina Berres and Julia Penn.
*Contributors include female- and nonbinary-identifying students.
In early February, GDS’s new Ethics Bowl team participated in an interscholastic regional competition at the University of MD, where they won two-thirds of their bouts to finish just outside the top four of high school teams.
Ethics Bowl is new to the lineup of academic clubs this year and gives students the opportunity to explore real-world ethical dilemmas. Club heads Amelia Oscherwitz ’24 and Rachel Schneider ’24, who recently represented GDS at the regional ESU Shakespeare Competition (Congrats, Rachel!), teamed up with Margaret Blomstrom ’24, Jack Farrell ’24, Clara Wartell ’24, and Helena Oscherwitz ’26 to take on some of the 15 regional cases that the national organization sent out in September. They prepared arguments, attempted to foresee counter-arguments, and received ratings from a panel of judges—a grab bag of Rotary Club members and retired U.N. administrators—based on the clarity of their case and the ways they handle rebuttals. They drew on ethical theories, some of which they are learning in GDS's UL Philosophy and Literature class, including virtue ethics, utilitarianism, and deontology, to frame their arguments.
“[Ethics Bowl] makes you think about the world you live in differently,” Amelia said. Participants will take on questions such as: Do dentists shame clients into flossing? Can AI that says it’s afraid of dying be shut down? Can a pledge who values social justice join a sorority/fraternity given its history of racial injustice and exclusivity?
GDS students from the US Political History class each argued a case in front of a Federal judge during the 18th Annual Mock Court Program, an opportunity that allows students to learn about constitutional law issues in the school context and then present arguments to sitting judges. High School history teacher Sue Ikenberry said all the students did an outstanding job. Judge Bryson honored Amelia Holmwood ’24 with the award for the most outstanding advocate at the event held at the DC Federal Courthouse. Attorney Michele Aronson helped students prepare for the event and attended to watch them.
Congratulations to Amelia and the rest of the GDS mock court team: Shaan Desai ’24, Catherine Dooley ’24, Jack Farrell ’24, Lucy Holley ’24, Matthew Jones ’24, Tess Madnick ’24, Jake Orenstein ’24, Lexi Rabasco ’24, Ajay Reed ’24, Claire Simon ’24, Charlie Strada ’24, John Yuan ’23. Thanks to Sue for the report!
Thanks to Gabe for providing the latest report!
GDS Debate attended the Harvard National Forensics Tournament followed by the Lakeland Westchester Classic.
At Harvard, Mae Lazerow ’27 and Ananth Mangalam ’27 got 2nd place! They beat out 60 other teams in the novice division to make it to the finals. If you didn't know, these 8th graders are debating against high schoolers and are still winning. Emma Rengiar ’26 and Jacob Tobias ’27 made it to the elimination rounds and ended in 13th place. Mae was the 6th overall speaker and Jacob was the 8th in the division.
In the varsity division, Mark Orr ’24 and Ike Song ’24 made it to the sweet sixteen. They were again (for a third time) one win shy from punching their ticket to the Tournament of Champions (TOC).
Don't feel too sorry for them just yet because, at the Lakeland tournament, Mark and Ike made it to the semifinals! With this second bid, they are fully qualified for the TOC. Georgetown Day now has two teams eligible for the postseason tournament! (Many schools don't even get one).
Additionally in the public forum division, the freshman team of Nate Ridl ’26 and Lomahn Sun ’26 made it to the semifinals. A fun fact (to me and no one else), they beat my old school in the quarterfinals to get there! Bobby Bulman ’26 and Grace Khuzami ’26 also made it to the octofinals.
Sixth grader Molly entered the National Literary Competition for deaf youth hosted by Gallaudet University’s Youth Programs. She won second place in two categories: written poetry and creative writing! You can watch the awards ceremony in ASL (see the YouTube video description for a text translation) and read her award-winning pieces here.