Thursday, March 15, 2018

Knowledge Bowl 2018

This year’s Woodward Academy Knowledge Bowl took place on March 9th in the Knight’s gymnasium. The decade long (est. 2006), dorm versus dorm, bracketed competition, tests the students academic knowledge.

Each team consisted of five students from the dorm and an alternate for the team. A bracket was created and the dorms battled each other in each round. The Knowledge Bowl consists of 10 rounds of six questions. The questions were created by teachers from every department and taken straight from their classes. The students were given hints throughout the course of the semester of what would be in the Knowledge Bowl, but would not know what the direct questions would be. They would have to draw from memory and what they learned in order to answer the questions correctly. Each team had their table set up with buzzers connected to ring in. After ringing in they gave their answer and then  were awarded points if answered correctly. In a close final round match, Expedition Hall beat out Triumph Hall to claim the championship. Of course the dorms weren't just competing for bragging rights, the team would also win a prize. Expedition Hall's team won for their dorm a trip to go eat at a Chinese Buffet and to go see the movie Black Panther.

See all the pictures from the event on Knights Pics:

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Team Toby

     The Knights football team got to make the dreams of a young boy come true. Toby loves football and has many athletes that he looks up to. He had a wish to be able to spend time with the Knight’s football team before an upcoming surgery he had. Toby was born in China, where he lived in an orphanage. Toby was born with Neurogenic Bladder, Spina Bifida, and Club Foot. His family adopted him at the age of six. Toby was in need of surgery due to complications with his Spina Bifida. To cheer up Toby and show support the Woodward Academy football team invited him to join them at their practices and one of their games before his surgery. He got to meet the whole team and play catch with them. Toby got to attend their game against Des Moines Christian and watch from the sidelines. Our student section as well as staff and coaches wore shirts to show support for Toby and his upcoming surgery. The shirts had “Team Toby” printed on them. Toby had an amazing night cheering on the football players and meeting some of the other students. His surgery was a success and he spent time at home recovering. Toby definitely is now a part of the Woodward Academy Family and we are now part of Team Toby.

Johnathan Ibarra


        Johnathan is the Executive Knight of our Phase 5 program. Every student at Woodward Academy progresses through their program through 4 phases. The closer they get through these indicates how close they are to graduating their specific program. Phase Five students are those who have successfully moved through their on-campus program, but have found it beneficial to not immediately return home. Students in this position are making a conscious decision to stay near Woodward Academy and will obtain the benefits of doing so. They will also be the top students to experience expanded vocational and job opportunities. Jonathan has proved to be one of those students that deserves those extra opportunities, on the dorm and in the community.

Johnathan has a lot of responsibility on the dorm being the Executive Knight. Executive Knights being the leaders of their respected dorms. These students are at the top of the Knights Club and play an active role in maintaining it’s integrity. They are each responsible for their own individual dorms while supporting and challenging each other to have the best dorm on campus. Johnathan challenges himself to go above and beyond what is expected of him. He took intiative and approached his staff team about finding a job outside of the typical vocations students have had in the past. Johnathan was interested in drawing and making sure to find work that was hands on.

His staff team proposed a job offer at 905 Ink in Boone, IA. 905 Ink is a screenprinting business that specializes in custom screenprinting, graphic design, and screen embroidery services. All of the screenprinting done on site and in house. In January, Johnathan went in for an interview and was hired as an assistant screenprinter. He works one on one with a screenprinter to learn how to create the products. There is a lot to learn with screenprinting. His mentor helps him to learn how to set up the designs, run the screen press, and how to make sure the temperature is correct for the right color of ink. There are different steps involved for each custom printing they do. Johnathan likes the challenge of this work and learning a new trade.

“I love working with my hands, so when I was given the opportunity to obtain a job at a screenprinting company I didn’t think twice about it. This is my first job and I feel it is preparing me in many ways to go into the working world. I work about 20 hours a week and make the best of it everyday. It is messy work but I walk in everyday motivated and ready to put in all my effort, no matter what. I have learned a lot of skills that could take me a long way if I decide to pursue a career in this type of work in the future. The part I love most are the people I work with. They are helpful and offer me advice for when I return home. I have a son at home that I need to provide for. This job is teaching me to have the drive and mentality to earn a honest living, not only for me, but for my family too. I am blessed to have a chance to earn money and work off campus. Woodward Academy has helped me to be where I am today. Helping me to find out what I like doing so I can have a future and career.”


Anthony Green


     Rather than spend time on campus, Anthony has earned the right to be employed while at Woodward Academy. He works at Madrid Home, a local assisted living environment for the elderly. This is not just any job, it was one that will help prepare him for the future.
     Anthony earned his Hi-SET high school equivalent in the fall of 2018. Shortly after that, he applied for an opening at the Madrid Home. It was an entry level position where he worked as an assistant to the staff there; passing out snacks, playing games, and just spending time with the residents. This part of the job was not Anthony’s favorite but he found it rewarding. He found that he wanted more out of his job and asked how to advance. His boss told Anthony to study to receive his CNA. The Madrid Home offered free classes and paid for Anthony to take his test. After three months of classes, Anthony earned his CNA from DMACC in Ankeny, IA. 
Anthony stated, “It means a lot to me that I have the opportunity to go off campus for 12 hours a day and am given the chance to conduct myself like a young man. I wanted to be more involved so I pushed myself to receive my CNA. I could see that residents there wanted someone to take care of them and I wanted to make a difference. Being a CNA allows me to have more resposibility and to provide more care for the residents. My favorite part of my job is building realtionships with them and hearing their stories from their past. I have learned a lot from them and their advice has helped me to view life differently. Hearing stories from when they were my age has made me realize that I want to help people instead of be selfish like I was in the past. The best advice one resident gave me is to understand that life is bigger than myself. I need to make something of myself and want more for myself than a life of crime. When I leave the Academy I have plans to continue to work as a CNA and go on to receive my LPN. Being given this opportunity has helped me to decide a future for myself, instead of having my future decided for me.”

       Anthony is a great example of taking an opportunity and making it his own. He was given the chance to apply for this job, and once he was accepted and experienced what it takes to work in this field, his dreams unfolded in front of him. He was not simply content with this current, entry level role, and took the initiative to change his situation for the better. He worked hard at his job, did what was asked and expected of him, he never complained, and formed a positive relationship with his supervisor. Once he established that he was a trustworthy and honest worker, he earned the opportunity to further his career and become a Certified Nursing Assistant. This allowed him to earn money while bettering himself. This opportunity has helped Anthony to plan for 
his future and has given him a direction to go when he goes home. 

Makaiah Baumgart


      For the first time in Woodward Academy history there is a coed Powerlifting team. This team is already breaking records and setting new standards for teams to come. They earned 1st place Best Equipped Coed Team at the Capital City Clash in Lincoln, Nebraska in February. Makaiah Baumgart is one of the first Woodward Academy female powerlifters to set records and make history. Makaiah competes in squats, bench press, and dead lift. She set her records squatting 265lbs, benching 140lbs, and dead lifting 265lbs. When Makaiah first came to the Academy she had never lifted weights or even heard of Powerlifting as a sport. Her Program Director on her dorm, Mr. Rives, saw her determination and thought she would be a good addition to the powerlifting team. Makaiah’s hard work paid off in practice and she saw results at the two meets she participated in, earning 1st place gold medals at both. To Makaiah powerlifting is more than a sport, it is a coping skill. Alongside her teammates and coaches she puts everything she has into her practice and meets. Powerlifting is a tough mental sport as much as it is a challenge physically. The team often has long practices and make sure to push each other through the pain.

      Makaiah said, “I never knew I’d be on the powerlifting team before attending
Woodward Academy. I never cared about anything. I always quit and I never believed in myself. My coaches, especially Mr. Rives, kept me going even when I did not want to. Mr. Rives never let me quit my program, on the dorm, in school, or in Powerlifting, My teammates were there motivating one another and encouraging me, they made me believe in myself. It took tears, determination, commitment, blood, smashed fingers, sweat, and hard work to even qualify for Nationals. When I qualified for Nationals I was just satisfied with qualifying, but Mr. Rives didn’t let us just be satisfied with qualifying. He made it clear we had so much more we could do before we could be considered to be the best in the Nation. If that meant 600 reps of squats and 600 reps of bench and stairs, that is what it meant. We put in 2-4 hours a day of hard work, sacrificing and pushing through the pain. There were days I just wanted to give up but we push each other through every second, every minute, every hour, and every challenge. After we qualified we went to Nebraska to compete against adult National Qualifiers. All 11 of us placed between 1st, 2nd, or 3rd. All 4 of us female lifters received 1st place medals. It means a lot to be one of the participants qualifying for Nationals and representing Woodward Academy and my Knight’s Club. When looking back on this experience I’m reminded of one of our favorite quotes that we say in the gym, “We work for it, others wish for it.”

Makaiah and her teammates will travel to Appleton, Wisconsin to compete at the 2018 Powerlifting Nationals in March. Woodward Academy’s Powerlifting Team is 12 time National Champions, hoping to make it 13 this year and be Woodward’s first coed National Champions.