Humans of Northwood: Johnny Cielo ‘21 

I’m from Vernon New Jersey and I’m a senior here at Northwood. From the dorms, going to town, student activities, and sports, I’ve had so much fun. This is my second year here and I’ve created so many memories.   

Northwood has given me the opportunity to play hockey at a competitive level while getting a great hands-on education. My teachers and coaches have given me all the resources I need to do my best both on the ice and in the classroom. When I’m not playing hockey, I like hanging with everyone at the turf and in the dorms.  

Northwood had taught me many lessons and I’ve created so many great friendships. Next year I will be playing junior hockey and taking online classes. I’m excited to see my future that Northwood has prepared me for. 

As told to Rachel Hinkley ‘21. Photo provided. 

Soccer Teams Compete in NYC

The U19 soccer team in action last weekend. (Photo provided)

After a long drought of not playing games, the Black Rock/ Northwood boys soccer teams traveled to Manhattan this past weekend to play a series of games against NYC-area opponents. The U19 team played against Barcelona Academy (NY), Westchester Flames, and Manhattan SC. The U18 team was scheduled to play three games but only ended up playing two against World Class FC and Real Jersey. 

The U19 over their course of three games finished the weekend 1-1-1. Their first game was against Barcelona Academy (NY) and tied 1-1. The goal scorer was Alvaro Garcia Pascual ‘21. The next game was against the Westchester Flames with a final of 7-1. The goal scorers of the game were Garcia Pascual (3), Slater Loffredo ‘22, Gian Franco Rodriguez Straccia ‘21, Eduardo Guerra Alonso ‘21, and Arnezha Astwood ‘21Their last game of the weekend was against Manhattan FC and was a 1-2 loss. The single goal was scored by Titouan Desveaux ‘21 

For the U18’s, their first game that was supposed to be played was a win by forfeit. Their second game of the weekend was against World Class FC and was a 1-4 loss. The goal was scored by Liam Doyle ‘22. Their last game of the weekend was played against Real Jersey with a 0-4 loss.  

The soccer team had been working hard on the indoor turf field and in the fitness center longing for games. This was a great opportunity for the team to travel and get some games in for their Black Rock season. The boys and their coaches are looking forward scheduling more games in the coming weeks and through spring break 

Multicultural Students Club Focuses on Black History

MSC 2020-21

Some of the members of the MSC from left to right: Julia Turner ’23, Christie-Ann Nelson ’23, Iva-Amanda Nelson ’23, Jazlyn LLuberes ’23, Gian Franco Rodriguez ’21, Mariema Thioubou ’23, Abby Sinclair ’23, Angie Castillo ’21, Jaden Klebba ’21, Kendin Basden ’22, Jazzy Valenzuela ’21, Addie Castillo ’21 (Photo provided).

The Multicultural Student Club at Northwood serves as a forum for communication amongst students from diverse backgrounds and the entire Northwood community. Through discussions and guest speakers, the Multicultural Student Club hopes to foster a school community where students learn from their differences and celebrate cultural diversity, according to the club’s description on Northwood’s web site. Jasmin Valenzuela ‘21, one of the club’s leaders, spoke with The Mirror about MSC and what the club does. “Our group is made up of much of the people of color on campus. We start off the year with discussions on issues we see in the world. Then we go on to talk about changes we would like to see within our community. In turn, we discuss events and other ways to promote our diversity and the issues we would like to see change in,” she saidRight now, for Black History Month, we are presenting on prominent Black events, people, and places that cultivate history,” she added 

The Multicultural Student Club is such an important addition to Northwood these past few years because Northwood has become such a diverse community recently. The MSC gives everyone from different backgrounds a chance to voice their opinion and experiences with others. Many members find MSC a safe space for themselves and others.  

The month of February is Black History Month, and MSC held series of school meeting presentations that illuminated aspects of Black history that most members of the community didn’t know aboutMSC leaders Amanda Nelson, ‘23, and Jazlyn Lluberes ‘23, shared insight on what the club hoped to do throughout Black History Month. “The Multicultural Students Club emphasizes that Black History is a part of American History that should be embraced, and not looked upon with disdain,” they said. “As we are introducing less commonly known important black figures and events in history each week at our school meetings, we hope to educate the student body that the ‘patriotic’ history learned in classes and in books have excluded an important part of history that aided in America’s development. These people and events deserve to be known as their history and accomplishments are just as important,” they added.

It’s Here: First COVID-19 Case at Northwood 

After more than 2,000 negative COVID tests and six months into the 2020-21 school year without a positive casea member of the Northwood community has COVID-19Yesterday a day-student in the Snowsports cohort tested positive SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Assistant Head of School, Mr. John Spear, notified the school community in an email this morning:  

This is the first positive case of a student or employee while school was in session and the student was attending in-person classes. The school is aware of more than twenty positive cases among students and staff that have occurred during school breaks and were resolved before the student returned to school or the employee returned to work.

Life at Northwood has proceeded as normal today for all students except those within the Snowsports cohort. Mackenzie Hull, a senior in the Girls Hockey cohort said, “It’s a little concerning, but I know that the school and the health board are taking the right precautions to keep studentsafe.”  

One of the students in quarantine also gave us insight on how they’re feeling. “Going into quarantine feels strange but I figured it would happen to some people at school eventually,” they saidI’m at least happy that I’m able to go home for a few days and just have a mental reset before coming back to school, they added. The Mirror will not use the names of students who test positive or are required to quarantine out of concern for student privacy.

The school is assisting the Essex County Health Department with contact tracing and expects the precautionary quarantine to be lifted within a few days. While having a positive case in the school community is unsettlingstudents are all working together to protect our pack” and continue keeping our community safe.  

New Outdoor Rink Gets Rave Reviews

The outdoor rink, or ODR as most hockey players call it, is essential during the winter. The year, with Covid preventing students from leaving campus or going into town, our school, led by Coach Gilligan, Coach Riffle, and the facilities staff, created an amazing outdoor rink for us to use during our free timeThe rink opened right before the first weekend after quarantine, and everyone is ecstatic. The outdoor rink is a wonderful resource for not only hockey players, but also the entire community 

The new outdoor rink on Cobble Field (Photo: Northwood School)

The rink is getting lots of useThere have been girls and boy’s hockey players, as well as skiers out there just having fun and enjoying our beautiful campus and rink. Ryan Cielo 21 said, “the outdoor rink is something that the boy’s hockey players are very excited about during this winter season. This is a great addition to our campus, especially during Covid, since students are not allowed to leave campus and there isn’t much to do outside since it is cold and there is so much snow,” said CieloThis will give students a chance to get outside and get fresh air while having a good time playing some pond hockey with their friends. This new rink should be a lot of fun for all students on campus,” Cielo addedI know the boy’s hockey players can’t wait to lace up their skates and finally get out and play.”  

Girls’ hockey players are also excited to use the rink with their friends and teammates. Marina Alvarez 21 said, “having an outdoor rink on campus is super exciting. Ashlyn McGrath (‘21) and I helped Coach Gilligan with the finishing touches and are super excited to get some ODR tournaments going. The ice is smooth, the puck slides nicely, and it’s good to skate on,” said AlvarezIt’s so exciting that Northwood added this for us all to have something fun to do on campus.”  

As a girl’s hockey player, I know that many of us have been out there already, and we’re very excited to not only play within our cohorts but play with some of the guys. Ella Fesette 22, Paige Melicant 22 and I all went out with some of the boy’s hockey players this past weekend, and we all had a blast. We ended up playing 3-on-3 with subs, and it was nice to finally get a chance to mix cohorts.  

Melicant described the ODR as a bright spot in a difficult year. “I think the ODR is especially good for the girls right now because it brings a lot of happiness to the team,” she saidEven though we can’t play [games], we do have practice almost 7 days a week at the Olympic Center and go to the gym at school. The ODR brings us together and makes a tighter bond than most teams out there.” The ODR reminds Melicant of her backyard rink from home. “I personally love it because when I was younger my family would have their own rink in our backyard,” she said“It brings back a lot of fun memories. Not many schools have something like this on campus and I think we are very lucky to have the ODR. It’s definitely something special that we will remember about Northwood.” 

Some of the skiers went out for a fun time on the outdoor rink as well. Amelia Brady 21 said, “the outdoor rink is a great addition to Northwood for all students...Having it as a weekend activity when students are confined to campus allows for a fun change of pace,” she saidDuring my freshman year there was a rink, and it was very popular,” said BradyMany kids took advantage of it during off periods and weekends; I’m sure this winter will be the same. This past weekend the skiers used the rink and will be doing so again. The outdoor rink is the perfect winter activity at Northwood this year, said Brady.  

Students are very excited to be on the outdoor rink here at Northwood, and everyone thinks it’s a great addition to our campus this winter season. I know my team and I will be out there ripping some 3-on-3 tournaments, and we all can’t wait to see everyone out there having fun.  

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