Coffee Sparks new Addiction

The McCafe' selection from Mcdonalds has kids rushing to the popular fast-food venue in the "AM" for various types of coffee

By Matthew Ulmer –

Coffee has rapidly become the addiction that propels teenagers through their school day at Penn Manor.

Starbucks, McDonald’s, Dunkin’ Donuts and Turkey Hill are the main destinations teens reach out to to  support this caffeinated habit.

These outlets not only provide coffee, they provide many other intriguing coffee drinks. Iced coffee, Mocha’s, Latte’s, Frappuccino’s, Cappuccino’s, and many other gourmet drinks add caramel, chocolate, whipped cream, and other sugar content to the morning selection for teens.

The common reasoning for the outburst of coffee products in school is, “I need it to wake up” or “It’s just good.”

Junior Megan Schlegelmilch said, “I feel like it wakes me up for AP Bio”…which just so happens to be her first block class. Her selection is the popular French Vanilla Coffee From Turkey Hill.

Another Junior, Aaron Vickers, followed up by saying, “It wakes me up because I’m up late doing homework and playing xbox.” Aaron also goes to Turkey Hill, but prefers black coffee.

Penn Manor teems say they prefer caffeinated coffee and agree it defeats the purpose of drinking coffee as their daily routine. What many of these “highschoolers” don’t realize is the amount of caffeine in the drinks they purchase can be quite high. A generic coffee from Starbucks has 93 milligrams of

This was a graph conducted of random high school students at Penn Manor

caffeine(; more than twice the amount of caffeine in a canned coca-cola. A Starbucks Espresso contains the same amount of caffeine as an 8 oz. Red Bull energy drink.

Now for the shocker, a Grande brewed coffee from the chain holds 320 mg of caffeine, exactly double that of a Monster energy drink. It is obvious that energy drinks are another fad, but when kids can consume the equivalent or double the amount of caffeine with their coffee.

The habits seem to start from the family’s of the teens, or just because they wanted to take on the “acquired taste.”

“It keeps me up, but I drink it because my family drinks it,” said Penn Manor sophomore Matt Slack.

Certain teachers have different opinions on this coffee habit among their students.

“I don’t think they should drink it at school, a good night’s rest is all you need,” explained math teacher Mike Fowler.

Science teacher Eric Duchess said, “It’s the same thing as soda, so I don’t see a problem with it.”

The fad is spreading throughout the school and it is apparent that unless a new rule is set in place, it will continue to occur.

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