Loud crowd throws neon powder up to celebrate last home game. Varsity football wins their last home game before CIF finals 48-44.

IN DEPTH: School Spirit

June 8, 2018

On May 12 CHS won the title of “America’s Most Spirited High School” and Mr. Muilenburg was named the most spirited teacher in the nation. We decided to look into what makes our school so spirited and what this award means for CHS.

News Brief: The most spirited school in the nation

As our school won the most recognition for the most spirited school, Carlsbad High School gained a  positive reputation in San Diego County and received comments from celebrities.

On May 12, Carlsbad High School won the award for the most spirited school in the nation. Videos and photos were submitted to showcase the school spirit and pride that ASB has encouraged onto CHS students. Along with the recognition as the most spirited school, ASB nominated the most spirited teacher and administrator for supporting our students.

Our school gained their momentum by winning initial awards, such as Battle of the Fans this year, from local competition. Therefore, ASB decided to enter the national competition which is the varsity brands.

“The competition about the varsity brands, the high school spirit award, they do every year,” Mr. Riccitelli said. “I have seen a couple years ago and I thought this is a good idea for us and built towards it. So we started to have some success locally, in terms of winning the Battle of the Fans and SoCal sidelines and stuff. We talked about that as a class… and we pick some categories, and decide to pursue those, and obviously it turn out very well for us.”

Along with the awards given to the high school as a whole, there have been awards given to teachers that reciprocate the spirit of the students. Mr. Muillenburg was named the Most Spirited Teacher in the Nation which was a result of the student body nominating him.

“Well, I think that anyone has been in his class or has come into contact with him,” Mr. Riccitelli said. “It’s obvious. For those who haven’t, you can see him around school and comes to everything, and supports the students, and everything. But then, he also goes above and beyond in terms of leads the Loud Crowd. He dressed up in a penguin costume and leads the Loud Crowd in a chicken dance. This year, he dresses in a T-Rex costume and they come up with a Lion King theme. We have a lot of spirited teachers in this campus. But he goes to that next level.”

Since everyone was aware that our school won the most spirited school in the nation, Mrs. Redfield was nominated the best spirited administrator for attending our school events and supported our school. She is the one of the administrator that students felt supportive during any games.

“She was nominated ultimately, because she’s just an interim principal, and hasn’t done it quite as long as other people who had being nominated,” Mr. Riccitelli said. “But, the students just felt that she took on the job, really. During that time, there was no one else, and she took it on, and she led our school fantastically during that interim period. Again, she’s one of the students felt very supportive by her. She has their back and at their activities and supports them. They kind of repaid it by saying we value and respect what you do.”

The obstacles that our school has to face are the students who are uninvolved in any school events, and ASB managed to overcome these difficulties, which is why Carlsbad was recognized as the most spirited school throughout the nation. For example, CHS won because students are spirited by attending homecoming game to support our team. 

“Honestly, I think in a lot of ways,” Mr. Riccitelli said. “Naturally, our kids are extremely spirited. I think the difficulties take a lot of time. Football games are long days… There is a lot of stuff going and it’s so much fun and rewarding to watch the kids get excited and involved. I think every year our involvement is growing. So I think the difficulties are how are we continue to grow and how we get those kids involved… that aren’t involved into the school part… I think that’s the challenge not just for us. But for every school…That’s one of the things for our ASB and talk to ASB everyday about how we get other kids in groups involve…”

As our school won for the most spirited school, CHS gained a positive reputation in San Diego County and received comments from celebrities. Therefore, lancers as a whole become recognized by the whole community.

“…I think the things are somewhat validating into obviously the awards are validating…,” said Mr. Riccitelli. “Local celebrities actually sent out tweets and make comments in radio shows about how incredible our atmosphere at Carlsbad High School. I also think it’s that incredible validating when I got phone calls from… our local schools in around the North Country and actually in San Diego calling me…we’re wanting to have our school, our student section better…I think it’s pretty neat to see and I think it’s a testament to our whole school community.”

Muilenburg teaches his way to the top


Tosh Everett

Mr. Muilenburg won this years “teacher of the year” award. Muilenburg is seen here instructing students of his AP environmental class how to properly analyze a mortality chart.

The growth that occurs during a students life is very dependent on who they have influencing them as they are growing up. Parents, friends, and teachers that a person is surrounded by can either help or harm their future successes. Teachers are a category of people that take a huge part in hundreds of kids life development each year. Mr. Muilenburg has been awarded “Teacher of the Year” for his extensive work towards the science program.

Science classes can be one of the required classes that are dreaded by some students. Senior, Rachel Whitehead, likes that her CP Marine class is not one of the classes that she dislikes going to.

“It shows when a teacher really cares about their job,” Whitehead said. “Having Mr. Muilenburg for a teacher is nice because he makes what we are learning about more interesting.”

Something that makes Muilenburg such a unique teacher is his use of field trips and hands on learning. The students take field trips to further increase their understanding of what they may be learning at that time. Not only are these field trips more intriguing than sitting in a classroom, but they also allow people to comprehend the topic in different ways that might work better for them.

“I love the field trips that we have gone on for this class,” Whitehead said. “I definitely like that we get to actually see what we are learning about instead of just looking in a textbook. I think it does help me understand the concepts he is teaching better.”

I definitely like that we get to actually see what we are learning about instead of just looking in a textbook. I think it does help me understand the concepts he is teaching better.

— Rachel Whitehead

Most students around campus know Muilenburg for his wide selection of reptiles and animals in his room. Of course these animals are fun to be around but they also apply to what Muilenburg is trying to explain to the class.

“My favorite part about his class is that he has the animals in his room,” Whitehead said. “They are really fun to look at and be around and no other teachers have anything like that in their classrooms.”

Anyone who takes Muilenburg’s class is guaranteed new learning opportunities and experiences for their education. His award is well deserved based on how many students enjoy going to his class.

“Before this year I really did not like science,” junior Emily Padilla said. “Now I really do look forward to going to his class and learning things that I would not know otherwise.”

Lancers Out Loud: School Spirit

Students share why they believe CHS is the most spirited school in America.

Why everyone should bleed purple


Tosh Everett

Senior Chris Weedman flexes for the camera, as he stands in front of hundreds of students in Loud Crowd. Students were all wearing purple for the homecoming game.

High school is a big, scary and frustrating place. Being plopped into a whole new world with new people, new places and new responsibilities can be quite terrifying. The new enviornment is difficult to navigate and often leads to feelings of complete isolation. The period of time where you are trying to figure out how you fit into the fabric of your school is long and frankly nerve-racking. Yet, high school students of all ages tend to ignore the simple remedy of school spirit that combats the fears and difficulties that come along with high school.

Unfortunately, many students view school spirit as a phrase thrown around by organizations to garner more attention for events, but little do they know the term reaches much further. The amount of school spirit an individual holds often translates to improved academic performance and overall mood. In a study conducted by Varsity Brands, the organization that named CHS “The Most Spirited School in America”, it was found that parents with school spirited children reported above average academic performance 61% of the time, while parents with children lacking school spirit only reported above average performance 31% of the time. This correlation is likely due to the fact that when students feel a sense of belonging on their campus, they feel more supported in pushing themselves academically.

Aside from academics, school spirit encourages students to get involved with more school clubs and organizations. Having a sense of pride and understanding for the community at your school leads to a desire to contribute. Joining in on activities around campus opens up oppurtunities to meet new people and connect yourself to others in the future. Participation in school can allow you to uncover a new passion or make lifelong friends. Having pride and displaying improves the four years you spend in high school and even enhances the time you have after graduation.

Whether it’s fireworks over the field as “Don’t Stop Believing” plays on Homecoming night or use of actual pyrotechnics in the gym during a basketball game, Carlsbad is truly the epitome of a spirited high school. The sense of community present not only on campus but also in the city as a whole is matched by few others. Even those who choose to not participate in spirited events cannot deny the sense of “Lancer Pride” present across campus.

Although the idea of constantly displaying pride for your school can be intimidating, the sheer joy one experiences when they finally step out of their comfort zone is something matched by little else. After all, high school is only four years long and anytime spent sitting by and watching others have a blast is time wasted. So, the next time you feel the urge to bleed purple just go for it.

To view some quite impressive instances of CHS school spirit click here.

INFOGRAPHIC: School Spirit


Loud crowd throws neon powder up to celebrate last home game. Varsity football wins their last home game before CIF finals 48-44.

2017-2018 Spirit in a Year

Carlsbad high school rewarded with most spirited school and $25,000

The vibrant purple and white colors, the raging fireworks and the sea of students were gathered in the same area were to be presented the most spirited school in the nation and a $25,000 check to go with it. The student body and their effort to represent who they are have given the school an opportunity to use the money in any possible aspect so that students have the opportunity to strive in all aspects throughout the year.

Being in charge for the first time at CHS, Principal Dr. Brockett had never seen anything like it. The deafening cheers from students and the organized dances and events was a memory he would keep from this year. The students who built up a strong reputation upon themselves were to not only have fun but to inspire kids to take part of the white and purple family.

“I think it is super exciting for the school,” Dr. Brockett said. “It is a great recognition of the hard work that our students put it and is driven by ASB, but really that would not happen without the students [participating] in the great things that are happening here in the school.”

I think it is super exciting for the school. It is a great recognition of the hard work that our students put it and is driven by ASB, but really that would not happen without the students [participating] in the great things that are happening here in the school.

— Dr. Brockett

The hard work and dedication the student body has committed into to create a welcoming environment have paid off as $25,000 dollars was awarded to the school. The $25,000 would be used for projects by ASB to provide students with more opportunities to show their school spirit in the most energizing way possible.

“You know, [the money] is all ASB,” Dr. Brockett said. “That money is going to go all back to ASB for students, to be spent by students to further impact the opportunities we provide here. It is in the hands of the students who really did the hard work and really made the dedication to the school to earn that recognition.”

Having the honor to be presented this award, the school has set the expectations high for incoming freshman and competing schools to keep up with the level of excitement. ASB would have the chance to use the $25,000 reward to further innovate our school spirit to its full potential in the upcoming years so that the students could enjoy themselves and competition would instead look up to the school for student involvement.

“It sets the bar pretty high for our freshman class- our incoming freshman class and our other classmen who keep up with this tradition of excellence and this tradition of most spirited school,” assistant principal Mr. Felix said. “So we keep being the trailblazer so other schools keep looking at us to emulate what a school is supposed to act like.”

As the school year comes to a close, seniors file out and incoming students come in, wondering what the new year would be like. For the brand-new high school students and returning students, little is to expect at each event is filled with variant colors and surprising acts from dance to an orchestra. The number of surprises will have more and more students involved with the school and keep the spirit high for years to come.

“It is a sense of pride, and I think for everybody here is very very proud of this amazing achievement,” Mr. Felix said. “It is a great acknowledgment for everyone.”

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About the Contributors
Photo of Finn Corrigan
Finn Corrigan, Editor-in-Chief
Finn Corrigan is a senior who has written for the Lancer Link for three years now. He is currently serving as Managing Editor/Editor-in-Chief. He hopes to study international relations with a focus on economics at a university next year. He enjoys traveling, eating, and hanging out with friends in his free time.
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Richard Ho, staff photographer
This is his first year in Lancer Link. His favorite part of Lancer Link is photography. Richard's hobbies are playing basketball and tennis. His intended major is computer engineering. Richard plans to go one of the California State Universities after he graduates from CHS. In college, Richard plans to resume journalism for his hobbies and get his degree in engineering. During his free time, he normally hangs out with his friends after school.
Photo of Alyssa Miller
Alyssa Miller, Features Editor
Alyssa Miller is a third year journalism student and the features editor for Lancer Link. She enjoys writing and learning information about the school and is extremely excited to spend her last year at CHS on the journalism staff.
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Maddie Smith, Multi-Media Editor
Maddie Smith is a junior at Carlsbad High School who loves animals and creating videos. She is a part of the cross country team and is in the broadcasting program at her school. Maddie hopes to pursue her dreams in medicine, preferably at Purdue College in Indiana.
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Maddie Ward, multimedia editor
Maddie Ward is a sophomore and second year member of The Lancer Link. This year Maddie looks forward to editing the photography and multimedia sections along with producing videos for CHSTV. In her free time, Maddie enjoys collecting 70s records, binging on Netflix, playing the guitar, singing and watching La La Land. During this year, Maddie hopes to develop her videography and photography skills through working with her sections and to succeed academically so she can achieve her goal of going to college in New York City.
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Sophie Werwage, Graphics Editor
Sophie is a junior at CHS and is looking forward to her second year apart of Lancer Link staff.  Sophie enjoys making graphics and being the graphics editor for The Lancer Link.
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Sam Chacon, Photo Editor
Sam Chacon is a senior at Carlsbad and currently in his third year of journalism. Sam likes to surf, travel, and take photos. He is happy to be able to blend his hobby of photography with meaningful work published by the school. Sam is super excited to be the photo editor for the Carlsbad High School publication.
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Tosh Everett, staff photographer
Tosh Everett, throughout his life he has always been interested in photography weather it is through a 10$ disposable film camera or a very expensive DSLR, it all is interesting to him.  He has always had a passion for videoing his friends in his daily activities like surfing and skating, and it was a cool way to relive those random fun moments for him. He tries to diversify his photography from others and give it a deeper meaning than just a photo. He took photography to practice his passion and it is also an A-G requirement, unlike ASB.
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Max Piper, Reporter
Max Piper is in his second year of high school, and has liked photography for a few years and likes to shoot pretty much anything that appeals to him. This includes surfing, nature/scenery, and sports. He took journalism because he wanted to be involved in the school and take more photos to learn more about photography. In addition, Max goes around the Carlsbad/Encinitas area to taste different tacos with other Journalism students every other week. Some of his favorite bands are the Grateful Dead, Widespread Panic, the Doors, and Phish. To expand his gallery of photos, Max connects his hobbies of photography and surfing with travel.
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Jamie Morgan, staff photographer
Jamie Morgan is a sophomore and first year member of The Lancer Link. She is very passionate about photography/videography, but she also enjoys camping, hiking, and anything related to nature. Her favorite part about The Lancer Link is producing a taco podcast, Let's Taco 'Bout It, with all of her friends.
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Chloe Tran, Opinion Editor
Chloe Tran is currently a senior at Carlsbad High School and is this year's opinion editor for the Lancer Link. She is passionate about writing issues concerning mental health, fitness, and asian representation in schools. Out of class, she is the captain for the Girl's Varsity Tennis team and an avid book reader. She enjoys traveling to Asia during the summer and listening to music in her free time.

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