Marina and Fountain Valley high school students place in Academic WorldQuest competition
Marina High School (MHS) and Fountain Valley High School (FVHS) placed second and third respectively in the recent Academic WorldQuest Orange County competition.
Academic WorldQuest is a flagship program of the national network of the World Affairs Council. It offers a fun, fast-paced team competition, testing players’ knowledge of current international politics, geography, global economics, history and world cultures.
During the competition, teams compete in 10 rounds composed of 10 questions covering 10 thematic categories. Due to the high volume of potential content to be quizzed on, students study for months in preparation for this event.
“The students are awesome and committed to understanding the world around them. They dedicate after-school hours to study, prepare but, most importantly, understand,” said FVHS teacher Julie Chaicharee.
”Marina (High School) has been competing in this competition for the past nine years and were the Orange County champions for six years running, from 2015 to 2021, the longest winning streak in the history of the competition,” said Earl Ziemann. “This is a very rigorous contest and the students really worked hard to prepare and did great. I am very proud of our Vikings.”
– Submitted by Huntington Beach Union High School District
Orange County teens introduce computer science and basketball to Girl Scouts
Nineteen Orange County Girl Scouts ages 9 to 12 were recently introduced to the fundamentals of computer science and basketball at a unique Hoops & Coders workshop, conducted by 2022 Dragon Kim Foundation Fellows Gabrielle DeCuir and Shrika Andhe, both juniors at Placentia’s Valencia High School.
The teens were members of the sixth fellowship cohort of the Dragon Kim Foundation, an Orange County-based nonprofit whose mission is to inspire youth to impact their communities while discovering and pursuing their passions.
Last year, DeCuir and Andhe conducted Hoops & Coders workshops at Higher Ground Youth & Family Services, a mentoring organization for underserved youth living in Anaheim, and the Boys & Girls Club of Brea-Placentia-Yorba Linda. Their goal was to show younger girls they can achieve success in industries where women are historically underrepresented. They developed a 57-page workbook as a tool to facilitate learning.
In those sessions, each participant developed an app based on their personal interests, including sewing, softball, music, art, languages, storytelling, baking, movies and many more. The project directly benefited 45 students and indirectly touched an additional 106 people.
The new workshop was possible thanks to a grant of $5,000 from the Kwanza Jones & José E. Feliciano Initiative, which the teens received as finalists in the annual Dragon Challenge. The money bought 10 Chromebooks that were used in the workshop along with the workbook.
At the conclusion of the session, the participating Girl Scouts received “Think Like a Programmer” badges to proudly wear on their vests, along with their own workbooks, an app they developed in conjunction with another Girl Scout, and a better understanding of computer science and basketball.
– Submitted by Dan Pittman
Local soccer standouts compete in England
Irvine resident Kyota Tani, 13, and Santa Ana resident Sebastian Moran Ruano, 13, were two of only 18 boys in their age group in the country to be selected to US Club Soccer’s id2 National Selection team. The team competed in England earlier this year, playing against academy teams in and around London and Manchester.
Kyota plays for Pateadores Soccer Club. Sebastian plays for Strikers Irvine.
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