Mock Trial Teams Advance to Semifinals

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Chaminade’s middle school and high school Mock Trial teams have both advanced to the semifinals of the 2014 Los Angeles County Mock Trial competition. In the first four rounds of competition, the high school team faced Notre Dame Academy, Sierra Canyon, Damien, and a closely contested round in the quarterfinals against San Marino. The high school team is one of four remaining out of the 94 that started the competition. This is the seventh time in eight years the middle school has advanced to the semifinals.

Semifinals will be on Monday, November 24 at 5:00 p.m. at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse in downtown Los Angeles.

Amit Dodani Receives 2014 Peace First Fellowship

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Chaminade College Preparatory senior, Amit Dodani was recently awarded a 2014 Peace First Fellowship. This national award recognized five youth peacemakers across the country, and each winner will receive $25,000 over the next two years to “further their peacemaking work.”

Peace First is a Boston-based non-profit organization, which is dedicated to creating the next generation of peacemakers. Dodani was chosen as a fellow because of, My Name My Story (MNMS), the social leadership organization he founded in December 2011.

Since then, MNMS has grown into a national movement impacting 30 school campuses across four states, including Archdiocese schools in Los Angeles, and the first collegiate MNMS club at Texas Lutheran University. Dodani himself has reached out to more than 15,000 students through MNMS Inspire Empathy keynote talks.

“Although I was honored to fly to DC, visit the National Press Club, White House, Supreme Court, and the Institute of Peace,” said Amit, “I was simply there to represent the entire MNMS community and people who helped me make my MNMS dream a reality: my family, teachers like Mr. and Mrs. Bader who helped me overcome my speech challenge and Ms. Julie LaBelle who embraced the program and help make it what it is today; and most importantly the amazing MNMS Student Leaders and Chaminade Faculty like Mr. Williamson who make all this possible.”

Ms. Julie LaBelle, Chaminade Student Activity Director and MNMS School Club Advisor, who has been instrumental in creating the curriculum for the Leadership Days, Inspire Empathy Days, and the MNMS Resource Guide said “My Name My Story has become an important aspect of the Chaminade community as well as an excellent model for other schools to implement. My Name My Story school clubs, programs, and events, like the Inspire Empathy Day and Social Entrepreneurship Camp, offer schools like Chaminade the opportunity to inspire student leaders to be empathetic leaders in their communities, and to create a 
positive culture on their campus. At Chaminade, My Name My Story has also helped us fulfill our Marianist Characteristics of family spirit, service, justice, and peace and adaptation and change.”

As Dodani heads off to college next year, he is excited to continue to spread the message of empathy and scale MNMS with the support of organizations like Peace First and work towards the MNMS goal of connecting “One Million Stories that Inspire” and empowering youth to be powerful change agents in their communities.

Middle School Robotics Wins Judges Award

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After the Reseda Regents VEX Victory in the Valley Tournament earlier this month, Chaminade’s middle school VEX Robotics Team is now the winner of back-to-back Judges Awards.

Team 83 competed against 33 high school and four middle school teams, and ended the qualifying rounds in fifth place with a 7-1 record. During the elimination rounds, they partnered with Creiger Robotics of Lancaster, but lost a hard-fought quarterfinals round 1-2.

In the end, Team 83 was recognized with the Judges Award for their solid team work, knowledge of their robot, as well as their overall performance during the tournament.

Chaminade Opens it’s Doors November 16

PrintChaminade College Preparatory opens it’s doors to middle school and high school students, and their families on Sunday, November 16. Guests will have the opportunity learn about the lifelong benefits of a cutting-edge, 21st Century Chaminade education; take a campus tour; meet students, teachers and coaches; learn about the One-to-One Student Tablet PC Program; visit academic departments; and explore the arts and athletics programs.

Middle School Open House (grades 6-8) is from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. on the Chatsworth campus located at 19800 Devonshire Street, Chatsworth, CA 91311.

High School Open House (grades 9-12) is from 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. on the West Hills campus located at 7500 Chaminade Avenue, West Hills CA 91304.

Film Class Visits Universal Studios

By Karen Ann Thumm, Film Program Director

The advanced film classes visited Universal Studios on Monday, November 3, for a behind the scenes tour of real movie magic. Students had a private VIP trolley car take them around the backlot, and a tour guide to walk them through sound stages and exterior locations. “It was amazing,” said film student Vinnie Bredice `16, about the tour, “to see the props and other things not everyone gets to see.”

Students had the opportunity to explore a working sound stage for the television show Parenthood, to visit the post production sound facility, to wander through the three story prop warehouse, and to walk a variety of locations on the backlot. “It gave us a hands on experience for something we are learning in a classroom,” said Nick Brosamle `16.

Students also enjoyed the standard elements of the Universal Studios Backlot Tour experience – a ride by the Psycho house, a trip to Amity Island to meet the shark from Jaws, and the King Kong 3D immersive experience. Universal Studios is the oldest production facility in California and its 102 years of continuously producing films made for an experience rich with cinema history.

The nineteen students who attended the field trip are current juniors and seniors enrolled in Film III, IV, and V. You can see some of their work on the Chaminade Film YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/ChaminadeFilmClub