High School student publications had a big spring with online publications from four groups—The Forum, Gxrls in STEM, Grasslands, and The Augur Bit, which also took home a prestigious award. Here’s to the writers, layout designers and editors, photographers and artists, and reporters who demonstrated resilience in the face of challenges this particular school year delivered. Dive into details about each publication and follow the links to read issues below...
The Forum calls itself a platform for student voices and has a particular focus on international relations. The May 2021 issue is the final for senior editors-in-chief Lena Levey and Jonah Sachs. You’ll find articles on the Marshall Islands, Greece’s asylum policy, China and the Dalai Lama, the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, COVID vaccinations in terrorist group-controlled areas, and more.
Gxrls in STEM began as a collaboration between GDS student Avani Ahuja ’22 and Layla Dawit (SFS ’22) and now draws writers from more than 11 schools from several countries, including half a dozen GDS contributors. The magazine was created to bring non-male students together for community and shared inspiration around their shared interest in STEM. The Gxrls in STEM Spring 2021 issue tackled global mental health, technology, sleep in the COVID-19 era, and more.
Grasslands is the GDS student literary magazine, published twice each school year. Of the most recent Grasslands issue, faculty advisor John Burghardt explained that it “featured poems in an almost classical mode, stories that will change the world you see outside any window, and plays—enough for a post COVID drama festival—by radically innovative GDS playwrights. Enjoy.”
Since the start of the pandemic, The Augur Bit—GDS’s High School student newspaper—has grown its online presence as well as its pool of writers and photographers. They’ve launched a weekly newsletter in addition to their monthly printed paper. The work did not go unnoticed by the American Scholastic Press Association who awarded The Augur Bit “First Place with Special Merit” in the annual awards for 2020, in a delayed announcement due to COVID. Olivia Brown ’24 was also recognized for an Outstanding Photo.
In March, Augur Bit staff attended the Yale Daily News Journalism Symposium during which they received three awards: honorable mention in the photo essay category (Olivia Brown, Laith Weinberger ’24, Lexi Rabasco ’24, and Fiore Petricone ’21) for a photo essay about celebrations after Biden's electoral victory; honorable mention in the news category (Nick Penniman ’22 with contributing reporting by Seth Riker ’22) for a story last year about GDS's Turning Point club; and best feature (Ethan Wolin ’23 and Jacqueline Metzger ’23) for a story about Black at GDS.
Faculty advisor Julia Fisher said, “I couldn't be prouder of the work last year's staff did—making the paper better than ever before, and publishing more frequently than ever before, in spite of being forced to change all their routines when the pandemic struck a couple months into the editors' [Tabitha Lynn ’21 and Nick Penniman ’22] term.”