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Courses added to Program of Studies

Mareska Chettiar

By Mareska Chettiar, Photography Editor

The Program of Studies for the 2024-25 academic year includes five new course additions:  Asian American Studies, Sports and Entertainment Marketing, Journalism Foundations, Robotic Engineering and Studio Session. It also renamed the Geometry course.

The social studies department has been developing the Asian American Studies course for more than five years, led by teacher Stephanie Matula. The class will be a 0.5 credit semester elective, available to juniors and seniors.

Asian American Studies will briefly cover the history of Asia and focus on the topic of Asian immigration into America, cultural development and Asian American contributions to the United States. Matula emphasized that people who are not Asian American are also welcome to take the course.

“Wanting to take Asian American Studies and African-American Studies is a way of becoming more culturally competent,” Matula said.

Journalism Foundations will cover the basics of journalism for students interested in journalistic reporting. It is a 0.5 credit semester course offered to all grades. Although it is helpful for prospective reporters, the course will not be a prerequisite for student publications.

“We’re hoping to appeal to a lot of younger students,” said English department chair Karen Gately. “Perhaps they may have an interest in enrolling in one of our amazing publications.”

Robotic Engineering will center learning around three robotics platforms: VEX Robotics, Dobot Robotics and Crumble. The course allows for flexible instruction for students with varying levels of background knowledge in robotics.

Jeffrey Conner, a business and technology teacher, will teach another new semester elective: Sports and Entertainment Marketing. It will focus on career opportunities within the sports and entertainment industries. The course is primarily project based, worth 0.5 credits and open to all grades.

“A lot of us don’t have the athletic abilities to be a professional athlete or the abilities to be a professional actor, but we still want to follow our passion, and there’s many ways to make a career in (sports and entertainment) industries,” Conner said.

Studio Session is a new 0.5 credit course in which students from all grades will be able to explore different genres of music including pop, rock, jazz and country with opportunities to learn different instruments. There will also be “jam sessions” for students to meet and create music.

“It’s a class that’s unlike others in the area,” said music department chair Christopher Nation. “It’s basically a class for students that just want to get together and make music.”

Sophomore Kussh Mital supports adding elective courses and believes they allow students to explore new interests and topics.

“I think it can lead people to avenues of interest that they didn’t know they had before,” Mital said. “That could lead them to more after school activities, like the robotics team or other avenues that are just not school.”

Mareska Chettiar can be reached at [email protected].

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About the Contributor
Mareska Chettiar
Mareska Chettiar, Co-T/E Life Editor
Mareska Chettiar is a junior and the Photography Editor of The Spoke. She looks over all photos that appear in the publication, and directs staff with photography equipment and technique. She often writes for the T/E Life and Opinion sections. She also has a published book of poetry and a small photography business.