Ephrata High School
Being a role model student isn’t a simple task, but senior Katie Earl makes it look easy. Despite the seemingly overwhelming workload, Katie manages her time well and has achieved many successes throughout her high school career.
Outside of school, she is involved in marching band, National Honor Society, German NHS, Spanish NHS, Tri-M, Leo club, and the newspaper staff. While handling all the extracurricular activities, she also works at Sharp Shopper and teaches toddlers at her church.
“Learning is my favorite thing to do. In my free time, I just read and find out new information,” said Katie.
As a child, the anticipation to go to school was killing her. When her older sister would come home from school, she would beg her to teach her what she learned and they would play school together so she could gain more knowledge.
“My mom says that by the time kindergarten rolled around, I was reading at the fourth-grade level,” she said.
One of her biggest accomplishments was when she won an all-exclusive trip to Germany. For a nominal fee of $6, she took a test through the school, scoring in the 90th percent tile for Central Pennsylvania. She then had an interview conducted in German, and four days later she found out she was nominated and won the trip.
After high school, she plans to attend Lebanon Valley College and major in German and education with hopes in returning back to Ephrata to become a German teacher.
Katie is very family-oriented and considers her older sister to be a positive role model. Her sibling is always positive and there for others, and these are traits that Katie values.
“Life is an amazing experience and I cannot wait to see what the future holds, said Katie.
Written by: Jovi Lynch
For many, senior year of high school is the most important times in a person’s entire education, and Lexi Jones is making the most of it.
Although most spend the entire school year sitting in a class, Lexi decided that she was going to teach them as well. This year, Lexi is enrolled in an internship at Ephrata High School, assisting math teachers Ed Gambler, Jason Buck and Christopher Martin. She considers her internship experience to be one of her highlights of her school day.
“It’s quite rewarding to see the younger students understanding Algebra and then using it on their own,” Lexi says.
A long day of learning and teaching doesn’t stop her from joining in activities outside of school. Lexi is a varsity goalie for Ephrata High School’s field hockey team, editor for her school newspaper The Mountaineer, and a commissioner for Ephrata’s Link Crew, helping 9th grade students transition to high school.
When Lexi comes home from her long days, she enjoys hanging out with her family and friends, or playing field hockey even when not actually on the field.
After graduating from high school, Lexi’s plans include attending Lock Haven University to study secondary mathematics education. This is a profession that Gambler feels she is suited.
“Lexi has been very patient and professional when helping the younger students with their work. She is a great asset in class,” he says.
Even when situations get tough, Lexi is always willing to persevere. After losing her goalie position on her field hockey team sophomore year, she never quit. Instead, she worked even harder, and she became the starting varsity goalie again.
Through difficult times, Lexi is constantly inspired by her parents, taking their example to heart.
“They were always positive and showed that there is so much more in life, and to always look for the bright side.”
Written by: Micha Schafer
As if being nominated for homecoming court for her school isn’t enough, senior Skylar Brown is doing it all. She is student council president and is a member of National Honor Society (NHS) and Spanish National Honor Society (SNHS). She has also been nominated for student of the month by the Rotary Club.
Skylar has done a lot of things not only for the school, but for her community as well. Every year, the student council helps to set up a Christmas charity which helps six families. They buy toys and food for each family in the Ephrata Area Social Services. Skylar helps in planning school events such as homecoming, blood drives, and prom.
Mandy Brown, Skylar’s mother, inspires her to be the best she can be.
“She’s been through a lot, but she raised me and has always supported me in anything that I do. She also has been outspoken about how proud she is of me,” says Skylar.
Skylar looks up to Katheryn Woodcraft, a student in the Life Skills class at Ephrata High School. Katheryn was Skylar’s escort during this year’s homecoming football game.
“She’s always happy and doesn’t let anyone stand in her way,” she says.
Finally, Skylar looks up to Bret Marzock, a math teacher at Ephrata High School. He is also her student council advisor, and next semester Skylar will be interning under Marzock.
“He comes in to teach and he enjoys it. He tries to make everyone else enjoy it too,” she says.
Written by: Lexi Jones
Walking the halls of EHS, senior Micah Schafer has found a way to make his mark.
Schafer has participated as a member of the tennis team since sophomore year. He has also been a member of the Mountaineer newspaper since junior year and holds the position of Features Co-Editor this school year.
Along with this, Schafer is an active member in his church’s music group where he plays the bass and sometimes sings as well. On Fridays, Schafer can be found working at Pasta Plus at the Green Dragon. Over the past summer, Schafer worked a part time job in the high school’s IT department.
When he gets the free time, Schafer enjoys taking part in some of his favorite activities. Whether it be riding his bike, reading, or playing his guitar, he values the quiet time he has to do these things.
Throughout his days at EHS, Schafer has found English teacher Gemma Rasmus to be one of his greatest influences.
“She’s always helped me see my own value and talents when I couldn’t see them myself,” said Schafer.
After high school, Schafer plans to attend college, but is unsure of what he will study. However, recently he has begun to consider a career in engineering.
One of the greatest influences that Schafer notes is a lesson that many people have trouble grasping.
“This is your shot. This is your only life, and everything you do will be with you for the rest of it,” said Schafer. “This is your shot, so make it worth it.”
Written by: Sydney Reiff
Showing her spirit and determination in all of her work is second nature for Ephrata High School Abigail Keeler.
During the school day, she assists English teacher Gemma Rasmus as a student intern. She can also be found enjoying her favorite class, AP Spanish.
Additionally, Keeler helps out the Mountaineer newspaper staff by handling their advertisements as the Business Manager.
Not only is she involved at the high school, but she brings her positivity to Akron Elementary School in the Big and Little Sisters Club. Every Monday, Keeler assists the elementary schoolers with their homework and teaches them important life lessons alongside other high school girls.
In addition to her interaction with younger kids at Akron Elementary, Keeler enjoys spending time with her nephews at home.
“It gives me so much joy to see them growing up and knowing that I am helping them become intelligent and confident young men,” said Keeler.
Also at home is Keeler’s father, whom she notes as her biggest role model. Helping with school assignments and paying attention to the minute details of her life are both on the long list of ways Keeler’s father has influenced her.
“He is so caring towards my mom, my sisters, my nephews, and I,” said Keeler. “Throughout my whole life, he has done everything he can to keep our family whole.”
After high school, Keeler plans to attend college to study Special Education. Keeler deems her decision to go to college as one of her biggest accomplishments.
“Throughout my high school career, I was not confident in myself that I would be able to handle the intensity of a college education, but with the guidance of my teachers and my parents, I have decided that I can and will reach my full potential,” said Keeler.
Written by: Sydney Reiff
Senior year is no easy feat for high schoolers who plan on continuing their education afterwards. However, despite how stressful it can be, Ciara Baretto is determined to make the most of it all while having fun.
She’s involved in the Mini-thon as the co-chair of the decorations committee, a member of the National Honors Society, and Leo Club. The year, she has decided to be a part of Ephrata AM, a group of students who broadcast the daily news to the school. Baretto says it’s a struggle to wake up earlier.
“It’s a lot of responsibility and commitment,” she said. “But it’s definitely worth the effort.
Even though producing can be rough, she states she has a lot of fun with the cast. On top of all that, she participates in winter and spring track. Being able to balance all that shows the pinnacle of time used efficiently.
Outside of school, Baretto attends a Bible Study. She is a member of the Worship Center in Leola, going every Tuesday and Sunday. When she’s not there or working, you can expect to see her at various sporting events, rooting for her fellow Mountaineers. Of course, this senior gives herself time to hang out with her friends or entertain her own hobbies, such as photography and singing.
Ciara considers making her way through high school as her greatest achievement in life so far. Out of all the classes she’s taken, human physiology has to be her favorite. After graduating, Baretto’s plan is to go to Eastern University for nursing.
When asked for any advice she could give to younger students about these four years, Ciara replied, “Get involved while you still can because high school goes by quickly.”
Written by: Deanna Ham
Sydney Reiff is a quintessential part of Ephrata Senior High School and the surrounding community. Starting in middle school by volunteering her time for Relay for Life, Sydney has continued to be involved in extra-curricular including Link Crew, Leo Club, National Honor Society, and Spanish Honor Society. She holds leadership positions as editor-in-chief for Newspaper, the co-editor-in-chief at Yearbook Club, and the co-president of Mini-THON club.
“I love that school has so many different opportunities to offer me. I really love to get involved and there’s never a shortage of ways for me to do that,” commented Sydney.
Not only does Sydney exhibit her leadership at school but she also helps at her local church, LCBC.
“I volunteer in the room with the one-year olds. It’s a really fun way to get involved with my church and be surrounded by little kids who brighten your day so easily.”
Not afraid of hard work, Sydney’s favorite class in high school is Calculus and she plans to major in nursing at college. While balancing all of this, she still finds time to work at Little Nikki’s Pizza.
Whle Sydney places responsibility on her parents saying, “They’ve been there for me my entire life, supporting my decisions and not being afraid to tell me when I’ve made the wrong ones,” it’s obvious to many that much of her accomplishments are due to her own determination and character.
“Through whatever life throws at me, it always makes it so much easier to overcome when I laugh about it or throw a smile on my face. The reward comes when I look back and realize that I spent more of my day laughing and smiling than I did wasting it being anything else.”
Written by: John Larusso
Whether it be in the music rooms, at sporting events, or in the classroom, Julie Walker can be found helping others around her to reach their full potential. Besides taking rigorous and challenging course work, Julie has joined extra-curricular’s including Marching Band, Newspaper Club, Concert Band, and Concert Orchestra.
While playing the clarinet throughout high school, Julie has maintained her academics and has been accepted into Tri-M honors society, German National Honors Society, and National Honors Society because of both her character and hard work.
However, Julie isn’t all work and no play. She enjoys playing with her dogs, binging on Netflix, and reading a good book. Julie will also occasionally play video games.
Helping the community and leading at Ephrata Senior High aren’t all of Julie’s goals. She works hard in order to reach her college goals.
“My favorite class is AP Biology because I’m learning material that is directed towards my major. It’s also interesting learning about the function of living organisms,” said Julie.
Besides her music, her academics, and her hobbies, Julie enjoys educating others around her through her work in Newspaper club. As co-editor of the News section, Julie writes both about news around the school and about the coming and goings of the high school’s expansive music program.
One of Julie’s goals is to educate about the environment per her desired biology major.
“I want to make the world more environmentally friendly because we’re not the only things that live on this planet.”
Written by: John Larusso