19 Apr


By Haley Enochs – Loveland, Colorado … Even though Campion Academy has been able to meet in-person for most of the school year, the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly affected the mental health of students.

In the United States, depression, anxiety, and suicidal thought rates have significantly increased within the youth population. The Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey found that 56% of young adults reported feeling symptoms of anxiety or depression and 26% experienced suicidal thoughts at some point during the past year.*

Campion students reflect on the affect the pandemic has had on their mental health.

Some say it can be hard to maintain a positive attitude and stay connected with others, especially during times of quarantine. “Even though I don’t always show it, I like being around people,” Ivan Mogaka, Campion junior said. “Lockdown made it very hard to get the social aspect of life and when my friends are not near, I become lonely and sad.”

Ohers, who express themselves through touch or facial expression, find it especially hard to wear a mask and social distance. “COVID has negatively affected my mental health because I am a very touchy guy. My love language is touch, so it feels like I can’t convey my happiness to others right. I love hugs and the distancing is hard on hugs,” said Jared Marcenaro, Campion junior.

Anxiety has increased among some students. “Since the pandemic started, it has been hard for me to stay positive,” a student reflected. “Before COVID, I struggled with anxiety and the pandemic added to the problem. I have struggled with social anxiety the most since I haven’t been able to interact with others regularly. However, God has been the main frame of happiness in my life and I have learned how much I need to lean on Him in difficult times.”

It is helpful knowing there is a better future ahead, regardless of what happens here on earth. “One way I have stayed positive and strong throughout this pandemic is by maintaining my spiritual life. All the changes in plans and schedules have made me realize that God is the only one who can be a constant in our lives. Our circumstances will change, but He never will. I find my strength in that promise,” Kylie Wehling, Campion junior, commented.

–Haley Enochs, is a senior at Campion Academy; photo supplied

Editor’s Note: If you are a student experiencing mental health issues, don’t be afraid to reach out. Speak to a trusted adult, such as a parent, teacher, or guidance counselor or text HOME to 741741 to chat with a live, trained Crisis Counselor.

**Panchal, N., Kamal, R., Cox, C., & Garfield, R. (2021). The Implications of COVID-19 for Mental Health and Substance Use. Kaiser Family Foundation. Retrieved from https://www.kff.org/

25 Feb

Campion scholars celebrate academic accomplishments

By Haley Enochs — Loveland, Colorado … Campion Academy honored students on Sunday, February 21 during their annual scholastic award’s program, Campion Acclaim.

The administration acknowledged those with excellent grades and awarded scholarships in front of the assembled crowd, which included fellow classmates, teachers, and parents. All juniors and seniors with a minimum GPA of 3.5 who demonstrated qualities of scholarship, leadership, service, and character, were nominated into the National Honors Society (NHS) during the ceremony. Seniors inducted into the NHS were given a red cord and gold pin to wear at graduation to recognize their achievements.

Brooke Eitel, Campion senior, reflected on the event saying, “It is a huge honor to be recognized for all of the hard work I’ve put into academics the past four years. Hopefully being a part of the NHS will help me get scholarships so I can continue my education at a college level.”

Kent Kast, Campion’s vice principal of academics and NHS sponsor explained why it is important to spend time recognizing the accomplishments of the students.

“I believe it is meaningful to the students to be recognized for their achievements. When we are recognized, it makes us want to be even better. It is also a good example to other students of the satisfaction that comes with a job well done. The students are also eligible for scholarships in college that they might not be able to get without a membership in the National Honors Society.”

During the service, four seniors were chosen to speak and light a candle symbolizing the four pillars of NHS, scholarship, service, leadership, and character.

“I never really thought about being part of the NHS until I came to this event,” Tiffany Dien, Campion senior said. “It felt surreal to be actually lighting a candle, speaking, and getting our red cords and pins. It means a great deal to be recognized for my achievements and see my hard work pay off.”

–Haley Enochs is a senior at Campion Academy; photos supplied

02 Dec


By Haley Enochs – Loveland, Colorado …Taking advantage of in-person school this semester, Kristie Smith, a kindergarten teacher at HMS Richards school, is helping her students explore the story of creation in a fun, interactive way.

The activities she has presented to her students include constructing creation scenes out of candy, drawing events with shaving cream, and talking about why each part of creation was essential to the world. “It was a very big, messy project,” stated Smith.

Due to the uncertainty 2020 has brought, Smith wanted to encourage reading the Bible and building a closer relationship with God among her charges. However, for kindergartners, it can sometimes be hard to focus their attention on the Bible, but hands-on activities keep them engaged.

Smith explained, “I feel like this year with COVID, Bible class is a very important part of the curriculum because, while we don’t know when Jesus is returning, there are so many signs right now that He will be returning soon.”

In Smith’s classroom, helping students connect to God isn’t just limited to Bible class. Throughout the day, when students bring up personal concerns, she teaches them to stop and pray. “We’ve seen miracles already happen in our class,” explained Smith. “We’ll pray about something and, many times, just a few minutes later, we can see how God has answered us.”

Because of the pandemic, it is always a question if schools will be able to stay open for in-person learning.

“Every day I go in, I know it’s a blessing that I’m there with my kids and we’re not meeting online,” said Smith. “It’s just really neat to be with them and laugh with them. Every day is a miracle and my kids know that too. We thank God and pray that we can continue to stay open.”

–Haley Enochs, is a senior at Campion Academy; photos supplied

29 Oct


By Haley Enochs – Loveland, Colorado …“Everything I knew was about to change, but I would make memories that would last a lifetime. All the doubts and worries I had would soon fade as this would become my second home,” Haley Enochs, Campion senior, said.

For incoming students, life in the residence hall can be an intimidating, yet exciting, new adventure. Residence life is where students make friends and have the help of their deans to guide them through.

“When I entered the doors of the residence hall for my very first move-in day, I couldn’t help but feel anxious. The rules, the people I was around, the things I was about to do, and the schedule I would have would be different,” Enochs, added.

Although life [in the dorm] is much different than living at home, students learn to adapt and have a great opportunity to grow stronger relationships with the people around them.

“The people here in the dorm are like family; they are fun, crazy, and awesome to hang around with. You always have something new happening each day that makes being at Campion feel less like a school, and more like a family trying to know God more,” Jahir Marcenaro, Campion junior, commented.

At times, residence hall students struggle with the complete change in schedule and lifestyle and experience homesickness.

“Even though I have been in the dorm since [my] sophomore year, I still get homesick every now and then. Personally, I am not someone who easily opens up about my struggles, but living in the dorm has helped me learn to trust others, and the girls have been a big encouragement during my hardest times at school,” Sami Hodges, Campion senior explained.

For first-year residence hall students, while it can take time to adapt to the new environment, the friendships made there are irreplaceable.

“Dorm life for me is amazing!” Bentlee Barry, first-year dorm student, exclaimed, “I’ve never had as strong relationships with girls as I do here. Everyone in your hall is like your family. No matter what happens, we have each other’s back. It was such a blessing coming here and I hope others are able to experience it.”

Being in the residence hall puts students in a Christ-centered environment that encourages them to experience a lifelong relationship with God. The nightly worship, coupled with praying with the deans and each other help students grow with God.

Despite struggles, Hodges affirmed, “I’ve had to rely on God this year more than any other year, and I have come to realize that without Him, it is impossible to get through anything on my own.”

Haley Enochs is a senior at Campion Academy; photo supplied

09 Sep


By Haley Enochs – Loveland, Colorado … In an English class assignment, Campion Academy students learned how to lift up and encourage their peers by walking in “each other’s shoes.”

American Literature teacher, Erin Johnson, assigned students the task of diving deeply into the theme from the book “To Kill a Mockingbird” by completing The Atticus Finch Walkathon. In the book, the character Atticus says to better understand a person, you need to “climb inside of his skin and walk around in it” (To Kill a Mockingbird, page 30).

“I feel like this project taught a really valuable lesson that is often ignored, and I wanted to make this quote really sink in with the students,” Johnson said.

Students interviewed each other, learning about unique situations in their lives. Afterwards, they spent thirty minutes walking around campus imagining what it would be like to be the individual. Finally, students wrote encouraging letters to their classmates.

“Overall, I think they enjoyed getting to know other people through the interviews, and in the end, there will be many people who will be encouraged through the letters,” Johnson explained.

A few students thought it was really fun and taught valuable lessons about how they don’t know what other people go through on a day-to-day basis.

“I feel like it went good; I felt energized afterward, and I had some new things to try that my interviewee told me about,” Jared Marcenaro, Campion Academy junior, explained.

“I was thinking about how awesome the person I interviewed was about handling their emotions,” Marcenaro concluded.

–Haley Enochs is a senior at Campion Academy; photos by Erin Johnson

24 Aug

COVID-style “Class Scramble” at Campion Academy

By Haley Enochs –Loveland, Colorado … Even with the pandemic changing and canceling events, one event coronavirus couldn’t cancel at Campion Academy was the annual welcome back competition “Class Scramble”.

The Scramble is a chance for classes to compete in various games and have fun getting to know their classmates. Students bring an assortment of random items to the event and when Don Reeder, principal of Campion Academy, calls out an item (such as a cardboard box), students race to be first to drop the item at the designated center for their class. Between rounds, other activities are incorporated into the competition.

With social distancing guidelines in place, the Student Association (SA) developed new games and rules for the event to keep participants safe.

“Being on SA this year, we faced the challenge of creating new ways to social distance yet still have fun with our classes,” Kylie Wehling, SA Spiritual Vice President, said.  “Even though usual Class Scramble games like man-overboard and men-in-a-boat had to change, I think everyone still had tons of fun and enjoyed (the) bonding time with their classes.”

Everyone wore masks at this outdoor event, embracing safety by decorating their masks and finding creative ways to take pictures.

For the second year in a row, the senior class of 2021 claimed victory.

Milka Mendoza, Campion Academy senior, stated, “I was super glad we were even able to still hold the event, and thankful for the SA officers and staff who set everything up. It felt so good to win for a second time in a row! I’m super excited to see how our class can continue to make memories despite everything else going on. We did get a little scared of losing, but we pulled it off! It all worked out because we came together as a class.”

The other classes didn’t make it an easy win as it was a tight race between the seniors and the sophomores, who came in second.

Class Scramble is normally followed by a campus-wide picnic. This year, the low air quality from fires ravaging mountains in the area caused the picnic to be postponed.

–Haley Enochs is a senior at Campion Academy; photos by Jill Harlow