It’s Time To Register For Classes

Shay Salyer – Staff Writer

Attention Underclassmen: Are you or someone you know struggling to find the perfect classes for your future at Ridge? For your future in college and beyond? Well, look no further! Here’s some advice on registering for classes that suit your interests and possible career paths.

If you are looking to incorporate the social sciences into your future, there’s a wide variety of classes at the Ridge, including Psychology, World History, US History, Human Geography, and Sociology. Future psychologists, as an example, would benefit greatly from taking Psychology AP. Other classes that would be beneficial for a future psychologist could include Anatomy and Physiology or Statistics AP.

Looking to have a career in business? Whether you want to move up and be a manager at your current restaurant job, want to open your own nail salon, or anything in between, there are classes here that will help you get to where you want to be. Take Economics, Marketing, and Finance classes.

Are the arts your thing? Sign up for dance, theater, band, or chorus! We also offer a variety of art classes, including Art and Photo, that may be a great addition to your schedule, while also helping you reach your graduation requirements. Don’t forget about cooking classes – yum!

Want to be a Physical Education teacher or do something involving exercise? Maybe take Sport For Life, or aid for one of the P.E. teachers during your senior year.

Let’s also keep in mind the great opportunities we have in our language department. The variety of languages that we are able to learn here at Marriotts Ridge is incredible. There’s German, Spanish, Italian, French, Latin, and Chinese. Ever wanted to study abroad? Taking these classes, at any level but especially advanced, will help tremendously if you decide to study abroad through college.

Are you still unsure about what you want to accomplish with your gift of life? Take Career Research and Development with Mrs. Moulds. This class is a great tool for learning what you are good at and what skills you might utilize in the future.

In general, choose classes that are challenging, but do not push yourself too much. School can be fun and useful for your future, so make the most out of it!

New Plan For Old Ellicott City

Photo Credit: Fie Klementsen

Brice Handel – News Editor

Less than a month into his administration, Calvin Ball has rolled out his “Safe and Sound” initiative with the goal of finding solutions to the deadly flooding that has tarnished Old Ellicott City. Ball’s predecessor, Alan Kittleman, had drafted a plan that called for the demolition of ten buildings along historic Main Street, but Ball fears that demolition is, “using a sledgehammer when only a scalpel is necessary.” He still plans on honoring the offers that have been made to Ellicott City business owners to buy their properties, but, for now, he’s holding back on demolition.

Before any permanent decisions are made, he is bringing in structural engineers to assess damages and determine the integrity of the buildings affected by the flooding. Ball’s plan also includes improvements to Howard County’s emergency public alert system and efforts to clean debris out of waterways. To fund these improvements, a matching grant program has been setup that includes $150,000 in funding, but Ball feels that won’t be enough to help all those affected. To secure more funding, he is collaborating with Delegate-Elect Courtney Watson and State Senator-Elect Katie Fry Hester to introduce legislation into the General Assembly that will secure more funding for the county.

Ellicott City business owners are grateful for Ball’s swift execution of his plan, stating that it’s difficult to remain open with the reduced foot traffic in Old Ellicott City. Many people are weary of visiting Old Ellicott City given the dangerous flooding that has occurred, but Ball hopes that his “Safe and Sound” initiative will restore the area to what it once was.

Midterm Madness: Tips and Tricks To Get Through Midterms

Grace Underwood – Features Editor

Following the week after winter break, students are thrown back into the school year with Midterms coming up in just a few weeks. Whether you’re a Freshmen or a Senior, these tips and tricks will help you deal with the stress of Midterms and manage your time.

With regard to your diet and sleep, you should try to stay as healthy as possible before and during Midterms. Always remember to get enough sleep and maybe cut back on the junk food for a bit just to give your body that extra boost of nutrition from fruits and vegetables. “Get a lot of sleep. It’s way more important than most people realize,” advices Junior Tess Dandridge. Sleep helps your brain remember what you learned that day, so if you aren’t getting enough sleep your brain isn’t getting enough time to process and remember all that you learned for the day. Besides helping you remember what you have learned, getting enough sleep is crucial to helping you stay awake and focused during the test. Since you will be taking your Midterms so early in the morning an extra few hours of sleep than normal will go a long way.

The closer you get to Midterm week, the more stressed out your friends and peers will be. A good way to prevent yourself from getting overwhelmed is to plan out your free time to accommodate for extra study time. Go to your calendar and mark what times you plan to study, whether that’s an hour every night before bed or blocking off a couple hours every day on the weekends. Also, cramming for a test as big as the Midterm the night before will only stress you out more and you won’t remember as much as you think you will. “If you just tell yourself to not worry about them [Midterms] and really don’t get stressed about them, it helps calm you during testing season and you’ll find it’s much nicer to study for them while calm and relaxed versus all tense and stressed out,” advices Senior Emily Wood.

If you’re a Freshman and don’t know what to expect, your teachers will be talking about Midterms in your classes, and you should feel free to ask any upperclassmen about Midterms. The week before Midterms, your teacher will inform you about after school study sessions where they will go over important subjects and let you ask questions. Also, don’t ignore the study guides they give you. Even though you may have notes you’ve taken, going through a study guide will help remind you of what to remember and help you figure out what you will need to study more.

Good luck to all students!

Calvin Ball’s Email Hacked

Brice Handel – News Editor

Days before Christmas, about 35,000 Howard County residents received emails from Netflix stating that their accounts would be cancelled if they didn’t update their payment information. However, this turned out to be an elaborate phishing scam that was orchestrated by hackers targeting Calvin Ball.

The Sunday before Christmas, hackers signed into Ball’s Constant Contact account which contained email distribution lists with thousands of emails. Hackers used these email lists to distribute emails that appeared to come from Netflix with the subject line “Account Cancellation.” Upon opening the email, recipients were greeted with a message explaining that in order for their subscription to remain in effect they needed to re-enter their payment details. It was a typical phishing scam where hackers posed as a credible business in order to gather sensitive information. The email included a link to a phony Netflix website where people could enter their payment details. Thankfully, less than 700 people clicked on the link out of the 35,000 that received the email.

Within about two hours, Constant Contact had suspended Ball’s account and deactivated the scam link contained in the email. Howard County Officials have ensured residents that no government databases were compromised and no confidential personal information was released. At this time, Ball’s Constant Contact account has been restored and there have been no more repercussions as a result of this incident.