CATS Academy Courier

"A Trusted Students News Source with an International Twist"


Student life

CATS Academy Boston Prom 2017

By: Jackie Kovalcin

With the theme “Masquerade Ball” and  title “A Night of Elegance”, the prom had high expectations. And although I can only speak for myself, I’m sure everyone would agree that it went above and beyond in every way possible. It was truly a night of elegance. Prom 2017 was night of beautiful people, great music (especially Miron and Ha), lots of dancing, and a million photographs. From the delicious catering, going all out on the  dance floor, to the photos we’ll have forever, it’s easy to say we made the prom memorable night.

None of this could’ve been done without the Senior Prom Planning Committee who did everything from selecting the location to making sure there was a photo booth for our enjoyment. So for all your hard work, thank you. In addition to live music to kick off the dancing, we were treated to a heart-warming speech given by Jeungsoo Noh, a senior of four years here at CATS Academy, who introduced himself to the crowd as “Jeungsoo the Great”.

And a special congratulations to our prom king and queen Julliana Aya and Luigi Michelin!

Black Spring Fashion Show

By: Aleksandra Chernysheva

On April 27th, Ms. Jacobson and her amazing fashion students (both from intro and advanced classes) were happy to present their work in a fashion show called “Black Spring.”

Let’s think about what’s a fashion show. Fashion is art, which makes fashion show an exhibition, but an exhibition of what? Of beauty! It does not matter what is exhibited as long as it is beautiful (to my personal understanding). This idea was wholly embodied by Ms. Jacobson. There was every possible kind of beauty: beauty of clothes, beauty of models, beauty of music and dance, and beauty of atmosphere and mood.

By the way, atmosphere was one of the greatest attributes about this fashion show. It was absolutely identical to those professional ones that take place in Milan, Paris with the superstars in the first rows in terms of the effort that was put into it and the pre-performance preparations. However, at the same time the atmosphere wasn’t as disturbing: on the contrary, it was warm, soft, and cozy. We did not even need the superstars or the Victoria Secret models to create our own perfect show. This light professionalism and nervous tranquility, I thought, was fascinating.

I also think that Ms. Jacobson’s classes made a great improvement since the “DiverCity” fashion show last semester. Thanks to Gabby and her new-fashion dress, the fashion lab and the innovation lab are connected now. Thanks to Riya, Gigi, and Lina, who made a fashion show focused not solely on fashion, and thanks to Maya and Gabriel, who enlivened the performance with the pair-walk.

I got the chance to talk to two of Ms. Jacobson’s students about what they found was the best part of the fashion show.

  • “I think that the best part of the fashion show was the making of garments, because I could cooperate with my friends, share the ideas, and simply have fun.”- Maya Alarcon
  • “I think that the best part was that people, who have never sewn on the sewing machine were making their own clothe, their own brands like Gabriel’s dress, Jeung Soo’s design.”- Jeung Soo Noh

School Year in the Rearview Mirror

By: Jennifer Phan

This has been a year of great changes for our school. The much anticipated location move brought with it a thrilling new beginning laden with possibilities and challenges. Registration problems, schedule conflicts, room assignment mishaps, and settling down in general made the first couple of weeks hectic for everyone. But with patience and collaboration these issues were overcome, and the school year is thus set into motion. The school’s first elected student government as well as returning student ambassadors and peer mentors set the precedent for student leadership on the new campus through untiring enthusiasm and responsibility. The many school activities, trips, dances, and especially the energizing spirit week helped foster a sense of community among students from varied backgrounds and different cultures. This diversity was celebrated through student-led initiatives ranging from mixing dinners, positive messages on posters and murals, awareness-raising presentations, to school-wide participation in the Culture Fair and the Day of Silence. Diversity in passion and talents also had the chance to shine in the many spectacular exhibitions, fashion shows, and concerts: the Community Art Exhibition, Spring Fling, CATS Café, Open Mic, Black Spring, The Sun Arrives Later, and Once on This Island are just a few to name.

This has also been a year of great changes for me.  The much dreaded college application brought with it many trials and tribulations and some triumphs.  Apart from the standard senior struggles – juggling academics, extra-curricular, college application, (what’s left of) my social life, and sleep, this year has also taught me to have patience, for myself and for others, and perseverance, for the now and for the future. Looking back on the road I have taken, I can only say that objects in mirror are closer than they appear. The past seems so distant, yet so present; so much has happened, is two years even a long time?

CATS has been an intersection for my paths and those of the people who I have grown to know and love, and for this I will always be grateful. However, it is time for me to part with them and with CATS, and this is made all the harder knowing that for some this is our last goodbye. But I think I am ready. Not because I do not treasure my time here, for this has been the best and worst two years of life (a grand claim for someone who has yet to live twenty). I am ready because the past two years have prepared me, to the best of my ability, for what is ahead.

It has been quite a ride (at certain points, quite literally). Next stop: ?

Fun at Fiestaval

By: Aleksandra Chernysheva

Fiestaval took place on May 8th and became the first outdoor event after a very long winter season. There were similarities between the Fiestaval and Carnival event in the beginning of the school year with one significant difference. Fiestaval was organized solely by the students.

Maya, Martina, Horacio, Ivanna, and our wonderful student government planned the event, bought small treats for everyone, and decorated the outside area in front of the school. Our CATS band provided musical accompaniment, and Amber (who was also a drummer) performed as a school Dj. The amount of work and effort put into this event really does deserve to be praised. Special credit is also deserved by Professor Mike who helped to organize the event and Ms. Crystal whose dancing and cheering kept everyone upbeat.

“Everything was amazing especially the food, but I would add more activities. I was also very frustrated about the band concert having been cancelled, but there was nothing we could do…” says Mark.


Newspaper & Hopes for Next Year!

By: Dima Zhuravel

Dear Reader,

Thank you for reading the last issue of our newspaper this academic year. Our school newspaper was created not so long ago, but thanks to wonderful people Mr. Walecka, Mrs. Bowen, Gabby, Jackie, Sasha, Tristan, Shirley, Brian, and Jennifer, we did a great job and achieved considerable success. We would also like to thank you, the reader, for your support. Although some of these wonderful people will not be back next year, we want to wish every one of them and you, the reader, the best summer and success in life.

For those who are returning next school year, we want to inform you that our team will continue to publish thoughtful and engaging articles. We will be happy to hear from each of you on your opinion about the paper and issues of student interest. Perhaps we will even welcome you as a new member of our team. Again, thank you for reading our newspaper and we look forward to seeing you in the fall!



CATS Academy Courier Newspaper Team

Life Lessons

By: Gabriela Santana

Perhaps my favorite part of going to school in the United States was riding the yellow bus from West Roxbury to our old campus in Newton. Although I realize this may not have been my peer’s favorite part of the day, and it is now it more comfortable to wake up at 7 am and dash for breakfast, I think riding the bus makes a great point. Seeing the exact same houses, same forest, same signs, people, and buses, except for a slow changing season occasionally, taught me something about perspective. If I decided, I would change my playlist to the most depressing music ever composed or I could find the happiest of the 80’s and 90’s remixes. The decision was always mine and I could choose my mood for that morning and probably for the whole day. What I want to get across is that we always have the choice―or so we hope we keep living in a free society.

I don’t want to give you, the Courier’s faithful audience, a biography of my life here at CATS, but most certainly I will tell you that I never encountered so many challenges in my life before. Yes, we all share the experience of living away from home―missing the burrito nights, pasta, and in my case, the mango season―, we all have had, or not, challenging classes, or relationships with others, and with all these challenges, you will, most certainly encounter failing. And I don’t know about you, but failure is what keeps me awake, despite my desperate experiments with hot chocolate the night before an important exam. Yet, we all ought to think differently about failure.

I am not pampering anybody into believing that failure is good–it is not, nobody wants to fail, but, we must see it through different eyes. When people say that practice makes the master―I know we had heard it too many times―they do mean it, or so we hope. One thing I wish I had learned my sophomore year is that people are not inherently good at everything. My mom used to say that none of us is born walking. Be foolishly perseverant, that’s my advice. So, when you receive that next SAT score, if you want a better grade, look at the details. Ask yourself what you did wrong this time. Be patient with yourself; don’t diminish yourself, for no one learns under pressure. The value of failure is that it makes us understand the privilege of what we have now.

When I first came to CATS, on my first assignment ever, I got a C. Those who remember this incident will most certainly remember that I lost it. I was ready to pack my stuff after two weeks (I am not dramatic, right?). I did go over it and did pass the class, but sometimes the class that you think you are ready to give up in is certainly the one you will enjoy the most. Try everything, really, I never tried fashion, theatre, robotics, being a leader, calculus, economics, biology, or rhetorical analysis before coming to CATS. These amazing teachers, despite their enthusiasm for homework, tests and projects, are some of the most passionate people I have met. Their love for their subject really pours out of their bodies. Learn from them, try it all. And fail, and repeat your mistakes again, and again, until they become your strengths.

As I said, I am not pampering anybody, failure hurts but it is easy to stop and hard to keep moving. I am not an example of a highly successful and perseverant student. I am still living by my sermon, but I hope you take something out of this as I hope I have. I am sure I will get there. I am sure you will get there.

To my teachers, thank you for being there all through my endless rants, for taking time to explain, for believing in me, and trying the wildest of my ideas. To you, my friends, Class of 2017, let’s fail! -Gabriela Santana , Class of 2017

Six Flags an Awesome Trip: Interview with Vuong Tran

Photo Source: Theme Park Review

By:  Brian Nguyen

“After spending a second on my very first roller coaster, I knew it was the greatest school trip this school year.” – Hieu Tran on our great trip to Six Flags.

What did you think about Six Flags trip for freshmen through juniors?

“I really liked the thrill rides.  I found out there was Six Flags near Boston when I came to CATS during the first month. At the beginning of the school year, Mr. Angell told us that we would have a trip to Six Flags at the end of the year. I have waited quite long, but the wait was worth it.”

What rides did you spend time on? And what was your favorite?

“I spent all of my time on roller coasters, primarily Goliath, Mind Eraser, Scream, Superman and Wicked Cyclone. The Wicked Cyclone was the one I liked most.  I wasn’t as “thrilled” by the Superman ride, but I still liked it. I went on Wicked Cyclone many times; when I had to leave, I wished I could have more time, even 30 minutes to continue riding it with my friends.”

What did you think after spending the day there?

“I really want to say thanks to CATS, for offering this trip to the students. I feel sorry for students who didn’t have a chance to go on this trip. I will be here next year, so I really hope CATS will offer this trip again for all students. If Mr. Angell announces that we will have a Six Flags trip again, there’ll be no words to describe my joy!”

How to Stay in Touch with Friends

By: Tristan Fornari Hospital

As the end of the year approaches, a major concern most of the students in the CATS Academy Boston community have is how we are going to be able to stay in touch with our friends from all over the world. Since CATS is an international school and some students are not coming back year, many of us get instantly sad that we will not be able to see each other again and we will be losing a true friendship. Fortunately, the year is 2017 and with social media staying in touch is easier than ever. Here are a few ways to stay in touch with your friends:

  • Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, or Other Social Media Platforms: These social media platforms give you the ability to talk everyday with your friends. This approach will help you feel as if you never left them and will allow you to see what you friends are up to through pictures or videos online.
  • Put In the Work: Of course this whole process of keeping in touch is not easy and there will need to be an effort from both sides. My advice is to keep social media updated and try to talk to them when you have free time. This may be challenging because of the time differences, but there is always a good time in the day to update your friends!
  • Visit Your Friends: Although not everyone can afford to travel on a regular basis, try to travel as much as possible during breaks throughout the year. The importance of visiting your friends face to face is a way to ensure your friendships around the globe.

The Benefits of Feng-Shui

Photo Source:

By: Kenneth Luk

The ancient Chinese believe that where you locate things in your environment  affects the flow of energy which  causes an effect on you, known as Feng-shui.  People can alter Feng-shui.  Experts have said that different types of plants at different places in your work place or home environment can improve Feng-shui. You can put them in living rooms, bedrooms, offices and even bathrooms.

People generally want their home to be as cozy; it should be the best place to be in their life. The right plants can make your home a better place. Lucky bamboo is one of the most popular plants to improve Feng-shui . It is believed that lucky bamboo will bring a peaceful and wise energy to your home allowing a healing spirit to flow and improve your health.  The two most vital areas to locate your lucky bamboo are the East and South-East.  In the East it will attract improved health to your family members, whereas having your lucky bamboo in the South-East will strengthen finances  and bring in more money.

A comfy home is a good, but people also need  a good workplace environment to boost productivity.  The peace lily is a great plant to grow under artificial light; having one in your office desk and close to your computer would be great. Placing a plant near your computer helps because electromagnetic energy can be filtered by the plant.  English Ivy would also be amazing.  The vines of the ivy can soften any poison arrows pointing at you which could contribute to job, money or health loss.

There are many other ways to affect the Feng-shui with different  placements.  I have just mentioned a couple to give you some ideas.  Although some people may not buy into the Feng-shui concept, it comes to us from ancient Chinese through generations and has many practitioners .

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