Thursday, January 21, 2016

Journalism Final

     Megan Cotter

12 January 2016
D Block
Journalism Final-Persuasive Essay

    Do you believe in spirits or mediums? Approximately 45 percent of the United States believe in ghosts, or that the spirits of dead people can come back in certain situations or places. Although it is less than half, it is a decently high percentage. I think that most people who do not believe in ghosts, do not want to believe because it is kind of odd to think about what happens after you die. There is no definite answer to what happens after you die, but it is very possible and logical that your spirit stays after you pass or comes back in certain situations. There is very believable evidence that spirits and mediums are genuinely real. Additionally, ghost activity is important because it is an unanswered topic that has no scientific evidence that proves if they exist or not.

    Initially, there is a variety of  television shows about spiritual activity including Ghost Adventures.  In this television show, the people on the show stay overnight at specific places that are told to be haunted and record the entire stay. They collect paranormal activity using scientific equipment to detect voices or movement. In some episodes, they collect activity from evil spirits that do not want to be disturbed, so they do not have good experiences. Additionally, they also collect images of spirits with scientifically advanced technology which is physical evidence. Personally, I believe some of the activity that happen are just for show to keep it entertaining for the viewers, but I believe most of the evidence of paranormal existence is most likely accurate.  

   Additionally, there is multiple reality television shows about mediums at work including Long Island Medium, Monica the Medium, and Hollywood Teen Medium. These mediums can either talk, read signs, or feel the spirits of past relatives of the person they are reading. I believe this because they go up to complete strangers and tell them personal information about a loved one they lost or just personal information in general a normal person could not have known. Mediums are not clairvoyant, so they can not tell the future, they can only communicate with spirits. Some people think that mediums are frauds, which some are, but there is also real mediums that can communicate with people who have passed. There is articles and videos with “proof” that the Long Island Medium is a fraud and there is also articles stating that she is for real with “proof”. When it comes to mediums, it is honestly what you want to believe, but there is very genuine, physical proof that they are most likely real. In an article called “My Not-So-Psychic Experience With ‘Long Island Medium’ Theresa Caputo, the author demonstrates that she went to a medium without a reality television show that was very accurate and told her personal information that a normal person would not know and also went to the Long Island Medium show live. The author believes the Long Island Medium is just an actor, but she does believe in mediums. All in all, some mediums with reality t.v shows could be faking it, but there is legit mediums out there that most likely have the gift of communicating with spirit.

 Subsequently, although there is no physical and definite evidence that ghosts are real, there is a lot of compelling pieces of evidence that prove ghosts are real. First, scientists cannot make up their minds, and some are looking for them. To find out if something exists or not, it can usually be proven if it is true or not by scientists, and they still cannot find an answer. If you asked someone a hundred years ago if the earth was flat, they would have told you it is, which scientists have proven that it is not flat through the years. Why would it be different with ghosts? There is no physical evidences that ghosts are real, but there is also no physical evidence that they are not real. All in all, I think that scientists will find evidence that ghosts are real, it will just take time, just like finding out that the earth is not flat. Although it is very difficult to prove something is real with no scientific evidence, there is physical evidence through photographs. These pictures prove that there is something ghostly that exists. Another piece of evidence is that ¨haunted¨ houses affect house prices. ⅓ people in the United States believe that their house is haunted. If ghosts are not real, then what is haunting their house?

     Additionally, another piece of evidence that ghosts are most likely real are Ouija boards. A Ouija board is a board printed with letters, numbers, and other signs, to which a movable indicator points, supposedly in answer to questions from people at a seance that is used to communicate with spirits. When using a Ouija board, there is many rules you have to follow including, it has to be 2 or more players and when you are finished, you must say goodbye or the portal to the other side remains open. Sometimes you may contact an evil spirit that would try to mess with you, so it is very important to say goodbye. The Ouija board has been around for awhile and in the early 1900´s, people were sent to asylums for believing the Ouija board actually worked and could communicate with spirits. In the article ¨How Ouija Boards Work¨, it states ¨Concentration is essential. Experts in this sort of thing advise that you dim the lights, burn incense, and breathe deeply. Witch-board World recommends turning off daily ¨noise¨ like televisions and computers and using candles instead of electric lighting.¨ All in all, there is too many specific rules you have to follow in order to carefully communicate with spirits for it to not be real.

     Ultimately, although there is no physical and scientific evidence that ghosts are real, there is too much information about ghost activity including ghost photos, mediums, indecisive scientific research, and Ouija boards. If ghosts are not real, then why would all of these things exist? For most people, to believe in something, they have to see it, so in order to believe in spirits, they have to experience or witness ghost activity. Everyone has their own personal and different opinion about ghosts, but there is honestly too many reasons and believable evidence that proves ghosts are most likely real. All in all, I strongly believe in ghosts and think you should too.

Citation: Franchi, Jamie: “My Not-So-Psychic Experience With ‘Long Island Medium’ Theresa Caputo, N.P, 14 January 2016
Baker, Tom: 10 Most Compelling Pieces of Evidence That Prove Ghosts Are Real, N.P, 19 January 2016
Layton, Julia: ¨How Ouija Boards Work¨, N.P, 19 January 2016

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

2nd Student-Choice Journalistic Undertaking

Megan Cotter
4 January 2016
D Block
2nd Student-Choice Journalistic Undertaking
2.Film Review-
        American Sniper is a movie based off of the life of an American war hero, Chris Kyle, who was a very famous sniper. The movie stars Bradley Cooper as Chris Kyle, Sienna Miller, Jason Hall, and many other talented actors. The film had very good acting and Cooper did a phenomenal job playing Chris Kyle. Although Eastwood is in his mid-eighties, it is very obvious that he can still direct a great film.

      American Sniper is Clint Eastwood's take on Chris Kyle's life and his service in the Navy as a sniper who killed nearly 200 enemy soldiers. But there was much more to this true American hero than his skill with a rifle. U.S Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle is sent to Iraq with only one mission: to protect his brothers-in-arms. His accuracy saves countless lives on the battlefield which results to him earning the nickname "Legend." However, his reputation is growing making him a prime target for the enemy. Despite the danger and leaving his family at home as well, Chris serves through four tours in Iraq following the quote "leave no man behind." But upon returning home, Chris finds that it is the war he can not leave behind.

      The film was released on Christmas day 2014, but I watched it the other day for the first time. Throughout the film, it demonstrates real life events that happened through out his life. The film was also dedicated to Chris Kyle, because it was based off of his life story. Overall, the film is very violent but honors the life of Chris Kyle in a very admirable way. The film demonstrates the two sides of Chris Kyle; his life at home and his life at war. All in all, the film got both positive and negative reviews, but I believe it is a great film.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Student-Choice Journalistic Undertaking

Megan Cotter
16 December 2015
D Block
Student-Choice Journalistic Undertaking
 1. Restaurant Review-
     Last weekend I went to the Panera in Plainville with my sister, Alyssa. We waited ten minutes in line which was not that long since it was really busy and once we ordered, they gave us a buzzer so we could go get our food when it was ready. I ordered the pick two special which consisted of half a serving of a grilled chicken caesar salad and half a serving of their macaroni and cheese. The lady who took our order was very nice. It took about twenty minutes until our food was ready and they called my name anyway so there was no point in giving us a buzzer.

    When we went to go get our drinks, I was disappointed to see that they only have diet pepsi because I only like diet coke, so I just got lemonade. On the other hand, the food was really good, but the macaroni and cheese was a little cold. While we were eating, a worker came over and offered a free sample of fresh blueberry muffins. Personally I do not like blueberry muffins, but they were really good. Additionally, the restaurant itself could have been cleaner, but it was not that bad. I have been to different Panera Restaurants, and the one I went to last weekend was cleaner than the other ones I have been to.

   When we were finished eating, the manager came over and took care of our dirty plates and bowls and asked how the food was. We were honest and said "It was very good." She was very friendly and constantly had a smile on her face. Almost everyone around me had a laptop with them while I ate, which is understanding because it is pretty quiet there to work and Panera has free wifi. All in all, my experience to Panera was great and I would definitely go there again.

Monday, December 14, 2015

slide show presentation

Monday, November 30, 2015


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Journalistic Research

Megan Cotter
20 November 2015
D Block
Journalistic Research
College Tuition Prices 

Problem Statement: 
       College Tuition is defined as too expensive and is found mostly as an issue in the United States. On a local level, college tuition prices affect college students by 69% of seniors still having student loan debt after they graduate. Between 2005 and 2015, college tuition prices have increased by 3.4 percent every year which is making the problem worse. To find a good paying job or to follow your dreams, you most likely go to college. In 2014, 66% of high school graduates had enrolled in to a college. In the United States, the average college tuition and fees for a public four year college is $22,958 and for a private four year college is $31,231. To pay for these prices that are outrageously high, students have loans, so they are constantly in debt. Myra Smith, a college financing expert states, "College has many benefits. For example, people who graduate from college earn more money and are more likely to hold a job than those who don’t. In 2011, people with a bachelor’s degree who worked full-time earned $21,100 more, on average, than full-time workers with only a high school diploma." If college is a necessity to be successful and more than half of people in the United States enroll, then why does it cost so much? 

-Schoen, W, John: Why does a College Degree cost so much?, N.P, 20 November 2015, web
-Heller, Donald E. "The effects of tuition and state financial aid on public college enrollment." The Review of Higher Education 23.1 (1999); 65-89.
-Horn, Laura J., Xianglei Chen, and Chris Chapman. "Getting Ready To Pay for College: What Student and Their Parents know about the Cost of the College Tuition and What They Are Doing To Find Out" (2003)
-Heller, Donald E. "Trends in the affordability of public colleges and universities: The contradiction of the increasing prices and increasing enrollment." The states and public higher education policy: Affordability, access, and accountability (2001): 11-38
-Smith, Myra: College Costs: FAQS, N.P, 20 November 2015,web 

Research Question: If college is a necessity to be successful in our generation, then why does it cost so much money?

As a high school student, are you thinking of going to college?

Do you think college tuition is reasonable?

Why do you think college tuition costs so much money?

Do you think you need to go to college in order to be successful?
depends on career

If you decide to go to college, would your decision depend of the price of the college tuition?

survey link:

Data Analysis:
    Out of the 17 high school students I surveyed, 88.2% of the students stated that they are thinking of going to college. 68.8% believe that college tuition is not reasonable and the other 31.3% believe it depends on the college, so more than half of the students believe it is unreasonable. 37.5% of the students believe that you need to go to college in order to be successful. 75% states that their decision of their college would be based off of the price of college tuition and not their first choose school. When I asked "Why do you think college costs so much money?", I got many responses including, "For the college the college to continue being a college, it needs to afford/make money to keep itself going" and "I'm sure it has to do with school living expenses as well as paying the staff but the price is unreasonable, many colleges in other countries do not have an intuition fee."

   Initially, I only surveyed students from Norton High School, so if I surveyed a different group of students from a different high school, I would most likely get different results. Additionally, I have found from my data collection that 68.8% believe that college tuition is not reasonable but 88.2% are most likely still going to college. One possibility from this realization is that those people think that the price for college is unreasonable, but are still going to attend. If college tuition prices are so unreasonable, then why is 88.2% of the students attending? I also found that 37.5% of students believe you need to go to college in order to be successful, which answers my question. Although 37.5% is a low percent, it still is the answer for a few students. But what about the other students? Why are they still thinking about going to college if they believe it is unreasonable and is not needed to be successful? One possibility is that they believe it is just necessary because most people go to college and are successful or make more money than people that end up not going to college.

   From my research in my problem statement, I found that 66% of high school students in the United States had enrolled in a college in 2014. From my data collection, I found that 88.2% of a small group of students from Norton High School are thinking about or planning to going to college. Those percentages are both more than half of the students surveyed. In the research in my problem statement, Myra Smith, a college financing expert states, "College has many benefits. For example, people who graduate from college earn more money and are more likely to hold a job than those who don’t. In 2011, people with a bachelor’s degree who worked full-time earned $21,100 more, on average, than full-time workers with only a high school diploma." In my data collection, I found that 37.5% of students believe you need to go to college in order to be successful, so it is a possibility that those students agree with Myra Smith because she has proven that you are more likely to be successful with a college degree.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Annotation of Student Research

Megan Cotter
16 November 2015
D Block

Problem Statement: Is Therapy My Enemy?

Research Question: According to suburban, high school students, what about client effects the outcome of their therapy?

Data Collection: The student used a 5 short answer survey to collect data for his research assignment.

Data Analysis: 75% of the people surveyed have not even gone to therapy and 25% of the people have received therapy. 67% said that age was a factor, 25% said that season/time of year was a factor, 42% said that therapist gender was a factor, 42% said that client gender was a factor, and 83% said that group or individual was a factor. 

Findings: People believe therapy does help people who are emotionally struggling.

Discussion/Conclusion: All in all, therapy could be the best thing for someone or the worst thing for someone, and there are multiple factors that will influence the outcome of the treatment.