The Paw Print

The Quarantine Blues- A Senior’s Perspective

Picture this: you’re watching an incredible movie, and when there’s only 20 minutes left, it just randomly ends. The only way of finding out what happens to the characters is by reading the Wikipedia plot summary. Unfortunately, this abrupt ending to what should have been one of the best years of our lives is the Class of 2020’s new reality due to the far-reaching effects of COVID-19. Many of my fellow seniors and I can vividly remember that fateful Friday the 13th. It was a sunny, uneventful day when we received the call from Dr. Bernardo declaring that schools would be closed for one week. Soon after, the closure was extended several times by both our state and local governments until Governor Cuomo ultimately made the executive decision to close all New York schools for the rest of the academic year. A closure that was once welcomed as a break from the dreaded third quarter slump morphed into a crisis for not just our district, but for the entire globe. Uncertainty and a sense of overall anxiety paralyzed us all. Essentially everyone has been impacted by the Coronavirus, ranging from healthcare providers who put their own lives at risk each day to help others in need, to parents who must now become educators in addition to caretakers and breadwinners, to teachers who must completely adapt to an unprecedented system of online learning, to small children who now wonder why they cannot go to school or have playdates with their friends. For some Americans, COVID-19 has brought about immense feelings of loss due to the effects of illness and even death. For others, their grief may not be as profound, but the social losses felt by many have seriously impacted our mental health and well-being. This is especially true for the members of the senior class, forced to move onto the next chapter of our lives without the closure we yearn for and deserve. Second semester of senior year is often regarded as the best time in high school. At that point, students are finalizing their college decisions after years of putting in the hard work, picking out their prom dresses, receiving their yearbooks and having their closest friends and teachers sign them, watching VY with a twinkle of appreciation and nostalgia in their eyes, decorating their graduation caps, and simply enjoying the last few weeks of making memories before everyone goes their separate ways. COVID-19 has stripped these opportunities away from us. I’d like to be totally honest and convey how hard it is to find the motivation to continue with schoolwork when you have nothing to look forward to anymore. I miss my friends, my teachers, and just my normal life. I took the simplest pleasures such as getting coffee with my friends or going for a drive to the beach after the school day is over for granted. I really loved the freedom that came with being a senior; we all did. I think the adjustment to life in quarantine has been made more difficult because of the fact that Whitman feels like a second home to so many seniors. Our classmates and teachers have assumed the role of our second families. Our administrators and teachers care so much about us and worked tirelessly to give us the best Whitman experience we could ever ask for. Of course it’s customary to have your senior year end by taking pictures with your friends on commitment day, dancing the night away at prom and celebrating your achievements at graduation, but the circumstances just won’t allow us to. It is my hope that we will be able to reunite again soon and reminisce about all the amazing memories we had the privilege of making together. It’s safe to say that quarantine has made me realize that I should never take the people and places I love for granted again.

Kayla Sakayan, Editor-in-chief

June 5, 2020

Tips to Stay On Top of Your Work During Quarantine

Gabriel Gonzalez, Editor

June 5, 2020

With people stuck inside due to quarantine, many students may find it difficult to stay motivated to complete their school assignments, stay active, or even to do things they normally find pleasurable. This could be quite troublesome for many students who would normally be at the top of their game if ...

Walt Whitman Fly Problems

Walt Whitman Fly Problems

Steven Mora

November 9, 2018

Have you been experiencing difficulties with flies in our building and can't focus well during classes? Let's make a change and kick out these flies in our school. There are things we can do to defend ourselves from these flies, such as: Stop littering Throw away your lunch Set fly traps...

6 More Weeks of Winter or Early Spring?…That is the Question

6 More Weeks of Winter or Early Spring?...That is the Question

Ashar Farooq, Co-Managing Editor

April 4, 2018

Groundhog Day 2018, or February 2nd, has boldly set a prediction for the upcoming season. This annual tradition has been celebrated for many years. On Groundhog day, if Pennsylvania's Punxsutawney Phil sees a shadow, then that theoretically means 6 more weeks of winter; if he does not see his shadow, ...

Yet Another Mass Shooting…Will This One Bring Change?

Yet Another Mass Shooting...Will This One Bring Change?

Ashar Farooq, Co-Managing Editor

April 4, 2018

Valentine’s Day is supposed to be a day of love. However, a horrible tragedy occurred in Parkland, Florida as Nikolas Cruz, a former student of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, gunned down 17 people at a high school now in utter grief of losing 17 beautiful lives. Some of the victims a...

Celebrating World Pangolin Day

Celebrating World Pangolin Day

Ben Joseph, Staff Writer

February 17, 2018

Mark your calendars: Saturday, February 17th is World Pangolin Day. That’s right—an entire day dedicated to the celebration and preservation of… pangolins? What even is a pangolin, and what is happening to them? Pangolins might seem like any other ant-eating mammal at first, but a closer look reveals a set...

The Tide Pod Challenge: The Gateway to Your Grave

The Tide Pod Challenge: The Gateway to Your Grave

Efrain Citle Palestino, Staff Writer

February 10, 2018

What started off as a convenient cleaning agent has now become one of the biggest trends on various social media platforms. The Tide Pod challenged has snowballed, landing numerous people on the hospital while creating prime viewing material for those who sit a screen away. Now, parents aren’t jus...

The TIME Person of the Year 2017 is…

The TIME Person of the Year 2017 is…

Ashar Farooq, Managing Editor

January 31, 2018

Every year, TIME magazine chooses its Person of the Year. The person (or group) selected by its editors is often very influential throughout the year. It is the person who has made lots of noise in society or the news. The title does not correlate to whether the person is progressing or degrading soc...

Russian Olympic Ban Development

Russian Olympic Ban Development

Ashar Farooq, Managing Editor

January 31, 2018

The Olympic Games have been occurring for decades, and are a symbol of unity within the world. The pinnacle of the Olympic Games is to win a medal for one’s country. The pride established when your national anthem is playing in the midst of the ascending of your country’s flag is simply gigantic. The Ga...

New Year, New Robotics Build Season

New Year, New Robotics Build Season

Ashar Farooq, Managing Editor

January 31, 2018

The beginning of a new year often means the beginning of an intense few months for the Robotics Club at Walt Whitman High School. It participates in the FIRST Robotics Competition, where members have to build a robot based upon the specifications of the contest. These requirements vary from year to ...

2017 in Review

2017 in Review

Ashar Farooq, Managing Editor

January 31, 2018

As we ring in 2018, it is time to reflect on 2017. This was for sure a year of great happenings. The year started out with the transfer of power in Washington as President-Elect Donald Trump took the oath of office on Friday, January 20th. With President Trump’s presidential term came a litany of cabinet a...

2018 Preview

2018 Preview

Ashar Farooq, Managing Editor

January 31, 2018

With 2017 now over, here is what 2018 may hold for the world. The 2018 Winter Olympics are going to unite the world and feature great sporting events in Pyeongchang, South Korea. These games will be held in February, but will not feature Russia after an unprecedented ban due to a doping scandal. ...

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