One Hundred Average Joes

 By English 11 students at Penn Manor High School –

There are more than 1,500 students in Penn Manor High School and more than 120 educators. We see each other around the building every day but do we really “see” each other? We’ve had classes with these students,  we’ve been taught by these educators. But do we know them, do you know them? We started this project because we wanted to know more about these “strangers.”

We are students in a career prep English 11 class who created a project called “100 Average Joes.”  It was definitely outside our comfort zone but our teacher encouraged us to go out and interview and photograph students and staff members who we had not met and or talked to before. During the project we found that we could meet and find out a little bit about different people in Penn Manor High School.

We enjoyed this rare project because we got to move around and meet new people.  Although the skills to interview were difficult to learn, after about three interviews we started to look forward to the work.

There is a lot of writing and editing involved but it didn’t feel like work, it felt like learning something important.  As career prep students we don’t usually get to do this kind of project. Getting to go out and interview people was a new experience, it was nice getting to write about the students that don’t normally get interviewed. You get to hear over 100 different thoughts and feelings plus the voices of the people in our English 11 class.


Here is our project:

100. Junior Judelky Florez says that the biggest thing that happened in her life was, "when my parents got a divorce."
99. Freshman Hailey Spicer says "one thing I'll never forget is when my cousin passed away, it made me realize you can't take life for granted."


98.Tim Deubler, a senior at Penn Manor said a significant moment in his life was when his grandmother passed away. His future plans are to be a music teacher and to be happily married and see his family succeed. His senior year has been very stressful. He says, "Friends come and go but the real ones stay."



97.For James Dejesus, a junior at Penn Manor, the most significant part of his life was when his family decided to adopt foster kids. According to James, his life is very exciting but very contained even with some twists and turns. The past year for James flew by fast and everything passed by in a wink and made it feel like he was here just one day. Plans for his future are going to college at Penn State and to get into dentistry.
96.Freshman Robert Geiter's advice for incoming freshman is don't get smart with teachers. His summer plans are hanging out and parties. Robert's biggest accomplishment this year was getting finals done.


95. Bre Whited, a freshman, loved meeting new people this year. Her summer plans are going on vacation. Bre's advice to incoming freshman is don't get in trouble.


94.Casper Rosario, one of many freshman, enjoyed meeting new girls this year. Casper's plans for the summer include hanging out with friends. His advice is "do well in math so teachers don't talk to you."


93. According to Alesandra Hoskins, a significant part in her life was when her parents divorced. Her life is sometimes good and sometimes bad, but she says her life is like a rollercoaster. In the future, Alesandra wants to become a social worker. The past year for Alesandra was a big change because she moved into Penn Manor School District.


92. Zoee White is a junior at here at Penn Manor. She is a cello player in the orchestra.White wants to attend college for fashion merchandising. She has a busy life but she still has time to do the things that she loves.


91. Jordan Rehn has an exciting life but it can be a little tiring, she said. A significant event in Rehn's life was getting a guitar for Christmas. After high school she wants to go to college and become a cop. This past year at Penn Manor has been both boring and fun for her.


90. Ashley Miller has a very hectic life but it is also very relaxing. She wants to go to Millersville University, after she graduates, for genetics and medicine.This past year at Penn Manor for Miller was extremely stressful with all the pressure on the juniors.


89. Julia Ortiz always finds a way to make her life interesting. Her life can be crazy whether it's good or bad. A significant event in her life is getting a puppy when she was 5. Julia loves animals and has a dog. She wants to attend college and get a good career. Her past year at Penn Manor has been good, she can't complain. She spends half her day at here at Penn Manor and the other half she goes to Willow Street CTC.



88. Andrew Torres has a wild life. He lives life to the fullest and lives by the motto "YOLO." You only live once. He wants to be a barber and tattoo artist. A significant event that happened in his life was meeting the love of his life.



87. The most memorable moment for Willow Dimm, a junior at Penn Manor, was working on a social norm project. During the summer, Willow's plans for the summer consist of going to the beach with her family and hanging with friends. Her advice to younger students who are coming into the high school is "don't be scared."
86. Elena Lajuett, a junior at Penn Manor said her most memorable moment at Penn Manor was in soccer when the team was almost undefeated but then lost a game. Elena's summer plans consist of spending time with friends and family. Her advice to younger students is to "try your best in everything."



85. Becky Miller, junior at PMHS says, "the biggest impact in my life was when my grandpa passed away." She also said, looking back at her high school career she wishes she would've slacked off a little more and had fun.



84. Kyle Doman says "the biggest impact in my life was meeting Sophia. She has made me a better person." He also said "I can't wait to be a senior and get out of this school."



83. Salma Tumunga, 11th grader says "my life changed when I lost my bestfriend." She also stated that "being in high school made her grow up and get serious."




82. Sophia Forte is a junior at Penn Manor. She says the event with the biggest impact in her life was "meeting Kyle." He changed a lot of her morals and thoughts on life.




81. Junior Dana Mowbray says, "The most important part of my life is my family, that's who I live for." She also said that the person in her life she looks up to the most would be "my parents, I can go to them for anything."



80. Janitor Jeff Davis gives advice to stay in school because it is important. Davis' memory he keeps with him is winning states in softball in the early 80s. Davis grew up in Lancaster, he went to Macaskey JP, he also went to Brownstown CTC, and has been working since he was 12.


79. Junior Alex Quinn says he looks forward to sports, education, and getting out of high school next year. His summer plans are going on vacation, working part time and summer sports. Alex's advice for freshmen is "study hard so that when you graduate you can look back and say you gave your best."


78. Junior Precious LaBloy is excited to work and spend time with family this summer. Precious' advice for incoming freshman is "stay focused and always do your best." Precious is excited for CTC next school year. Her biggest accomplishment was getting into CTC.





77. Penn Manor junior John West, gives the advice to pick your classes that you need not just the classes your friends are in. West also plans on hanging out with friends and working. West's memory is taking the SAT at school.




76. Music teacher Skip Reddig loved the moment he realized the yearbook was dedicated to him. He wishes the whole school realized the auditorium is his classroom.


75.Sophomore Will Stavely got hit in the face this year with an ice skate and he said that was his most memorable moment. He said school would be better with more breaks. He loves to play music and ride his scooter.




74.Dale Braun, 11th grade., enjoyed her years at Penn Manor. She says they could have been better. Her favorite classes are art, she also loves to read.



73. Paige Meshey, a freshman, said she has some favorite memories from her time at Penn Manor. She also said school would be better if the days were shorter.


72.Karina Cruz, a ninth grader, said she loves to leave school every day. She wishes there were more "hot guys" in the high school. She said meeting her friend Carly Patterson was her most memorable moment this year.


71. Joseph Gundel, a freshman, said his most memorable moment this year was going to "Cali" and his favorite activity outside school is to play Xbox. He wishes the school term was a little shorter.



70. Chris McMillan, a junior, believes lunch would be better if the lunch ladies wore hairnets, and his favorite memory is every last day of school.
69.Senior Troy Hoke advises others to study hard and pass physics so you can get out of school and not fail. Hoke plans on getting his diploma and getting a full time job to make money. Hoke's memory he is going to hold with him is failing his senior year of school.




68. Javelle Quinn is a sophomore. This year she was on the honor roll. She said she is a stronger person now because she overcame many obstacles. "(This year) was good," said Javelle. "I've been through a lot of things but overall it's been a good year."


67. Laiklynee Kammerer said making the girls varsity volleyball team was a highlight of her school year which she said was outstanding overall. She said her sophomore year was better than being a freshman which was a bit "rough."
66.Baker, Cindy Frey, gives this advice: "always do your best, be kind to everyone and be all you can be." Mrs. Frey says one event that she still holds with her is when she went on a mission trip to Mexico. Mrs. Frey was also a Penn Manor graduate in 1973.



65.Junior Lindsay Hutchinson tore her ACL this year. She said she is probably committing to play soccer in college. The school year was good and her injury was life-changing.





64.Jacob Spencer has a goal of getting into CTC. The school year is "alright," he said although he admits he wishes he would have tried harder. A junior, Spencer describes himself as "outgoing, talented and hilarious."


63.When junior Eric Gardner moved to Pennsylvania he said his life was fun and full of events. He also said it was wild and full of drama.




62.Cindy Bachman said that getting married and giving birth to a son were the most significant events in her life. "This year was great and busy, but a good year," she also said.


61.Secretary Diana Alston said, "Year 2011-2012 at Penn Manor was amazing." Her most significant moments in her life were when she had her four kids. When out of school she likes to read and relax.


60.One point in Marisa Figueroa's life that was significant was moving to Penn Manor. Marisa spends a lot of time with her family, even though her life is very loud and crazy. To Marisa, junior year was the hardest but she wants to go to college to become a social worker.


59. A significant part in Linnea Rudy's life was when she started horseback riding. Her life is always interesting, but she enjoys being around everyone in chorus. Her goal is to be a horse trainer or she would like to work with animals.




58.Katie Irwin, a junior, can't wait for the summer when she'll go to Lincoln, Nebraska, the beach, the mountains, and be able to hang out with her friends. Katie can't wait for senior year theater shows. Her most memorable moment was in freshman year, coming into chorus.




57. Caroline Hathaway, a new addition to the junior class, can't wait for summer so she can hang out with friends and keep working. Caroline's advice about school was "PSSAs aren't easy." A memorable moment for her was the Christmas chorus concert.





56. Amber Kuhns, junior at Penn Manor, says her favorite possession would be "The piglet I've had since I was 6 months." The two words she uses to describe herself are "short and awkward." Amber says the thing she hates most is homophobia.




55. A significant part in Julia's life was being a part of the worship band for her church. Julia's life is crazy and not normal, but the past year for her was life changing. Julia would like to do something good for the world, and get straight A's.




54.Sophmore at Penn Manor, Kristen Reckard says the biggest impact on her life was "When I moved here from North Carolina." Her motto is "everything happens for a reason" and "everyone comes into your life for a reason."



53.Christian Olt, freshman at Penn Manor, said the biggest impact in his life was "when he got the mile record in elementary school." He describes himself as sporty and nice.



52.Warren Parker is a freshman at Penn Manor. He said the biggest impact on his life was "when my mom got remarried." He would describe himself as brave, athletic, cool, funny, skinny and black. Warren's favortie teachers so far from school have been Joe Herman and Nick Shwartz.


51.Chris Lafrance does a lot of fishing and boating. This summer he will be working as a boat mechanic. Chris says, "fun classes can make school interesting, there is a point where you have to tolerate it."



50.Junior Keila Anaya writes poetry and turns it into music. Keila works at KFC. Keila shared her biggest memories and claims that every time she's with her boyfriend is her biggest memory. This summer Keila wants to find time from work to visit her family in Massachussets.


49.Nicholas David Rayha refers to himself as a "nerd." Nicholas enjoys playing basketball, baseball, and video games. This summer Nicholas wants to go to the beach and do "the usual." Nicholas enjoys school and sees science as his favorite subject. Nicholas says his biggest memory was when he was wrestling with his brother and his brother caught on fire.


48. Manny Matos, a sophomore at Penn Manor High, believes that this year in school has been very boring. Manny likes to chill at home in his room because it is boring in his neighborhood. Manny's most significant event in his life was when he got his first braids in his hair.



47. Amber Antonelli, senior at Penn Manor High School, said that working in a nursing home for four years was "life changing." Amber's favorite moments in high school were having classes with Chrissy Stoltzfus. Addison Myer is conducting the interview.



46. Reflecting on her last year of teaching, Teri Hay (art teacher at Penn Manor High School) shared her views on her years of teaching. She also said that, "her husband is 90 percent of her joy."



45. Essence Lausell, a freshman at Penn Manor, said her most significant moment in her life was her first day of high school. She said "This year was not what I expected it to be; it was wack and boring." She likes to play ball as a hobby.


44. Long-term social studies substitute teacher Eric Urban likes to coach the swim team. He enjoyed his year at Penn Manor.


43.FFA senior, Ben Groff, is ready to graduate and move on to Wyo-tech in Wyoming. Ben is going there to study diesel mechanics so he can get a job working on diesel trucks and so he can help on the farm when something goes wrong, he can repair it.



42.Tim Casey, freshman at Penn Manor High School says, "My life can be hectic at times, but relaxed at others." He said the biggest impact on his life was "drama."


41.A significant event in Victoria Torres' life was going to Puerto Rico for the first time and visiting family. Her goals for the future are to get a well-paying job and to have a nice house. Her past year at Penn Manor went well. She spent only first and second block here and then went to half-day CTC at the Willow Street Campus.


40.Penn Manor freshman Gideon Stallings said that his first year of high school has been "swell." He enjoys coming here. He would describe his life as fun and exciting.




39.A significant event in Jordan Williams' life was coming to the high school. His life is not very action-packed, but is slow. In the future he would like to go to college and have a family.


38. For eight years of Eric Kark's life he was home-schooled, but he has gone to Penn Manor for the last four years. He wants to go to Thaddeus Stevens for auto body courses so he can repair cars. To him, junior year was fun and never boring. He recommends the FFA to his fellow students.


37.The biggest impact in Mr.McKnight's life was meeting his wife. After six months of dating, he knew that this was the women he wanted to be with. They flew to Ireland and got married in a castle. Two weeks later they came back and both started working at Penn Manor. The most important thing in his life is to be a good father and a good husband.


36.Melanie Rupp said a significant event in her life "was moving in with my grandparents." Her past year in high school was "boring and fast." Her life in a sentence "like a roller coaster" it goes up and down.



35.Wrestling was a significant event in Bryce Mowbray's life. His past year in high school was very "different" as a freshman. His life in a sentence is "a lot of stupid stuff but a lot of fun."


34. Senior Mike Bucek said that he's looking forward to going to the Millersville Pool during the summer. A significant event in this senior's life is the car accident he was in in 8th grade.




33.Looking back on the school year, Ben Baumen, junior at Penn Manor High School, feels that the walls of the school are boring and that they should be painted purple.
32. The halls of Penn Manor would not be the same if it wasn't for Leighton Dickinson. Other than making the school nice and clean, Leighton enjoys making gourmet desserts, and loves working out.


31. Brian Hammaker wants to become a tattoo artist. Brian's dad has many tattoos. In his free time he likes to draw, play guitar and skate. Brian's biggest memory was when his mom passed away.
30.Donald McMillan, a sophomore plays soccer and is a leader at the LCBC a big Christian church. He was adopted at the age of two and never saw his biological parents. He can also speak a little bit of Spanish and German


29. Gabriella Minnich, a sophmore at PMHS, said she used to live in Connecticut. She loves to draw and enjoys playing drums. She played basketball for six years. She also said that her brother was born in Italy and has a different dad. She said that she would love to have a volkswagon GTI for her first car.
28. School nurse, Nancy Morrell defines living life to its fullest!! Extremely young at heart, Nancy promotes activism. She loves hiking, biking and basking in nature. She is very passionate about her hobbies. “It doesn’t cost anything to be out in the woods! It keeps you younger,” says Morrel.
27. Tristan Feltenberger is a sophomore  who likes to hang out with his friends. He says he gets in trouble a lot. He expressed that he has never met his father but does have a step-father. Tristin says his favorite cartoon is Squidbillies.



26. Joey Sweitzer, sophmore at Penn Manor High School, believes "school was better back in the day." In elementary school Joey learned the basics of math, writing, English, etc. Now in high school he feels that the high level of courses is unnecessary because he's not sure how he's going to use it in life.





25. Lunch Lady Yvette Herr said, "I look forward to hanging out with friends at my beach house over the summer." Yvette also said that a significant event in her life is when she got married in October of 1995.


24.Freshman, Kelsea Lynn said that her favorite part of summer is hanging out with her friends.


23. Sarah Scheid is a staff member at Penn Manor. Sheid said, "My life is always interesting and it feels like it's full of surprises." She hopes to graduate grad school and have a healthy family.
22. Daulton Karr, 10th grade likes to work and make money.
21. Although Danica Gabrielson has a hectic,busy and amusing life she still finds time to make herself happy. A significant event in her life was swimming with dolphins. When she graduates high school she wants to be a professional photographer.
20. Savannah Santiago in 10th grade can't wait for school to be over and for summer to be here.


19. Cody Livingston is about to finish high school. He wants to go to college to be a mythologist or a cartoonist. A significant event in his life is getting a job at Chuck-E-Cheese.
18. Junior Natosha Polaski said her most significant event in her life was, "Being chased around by my brother." She plans on going into the military or to college after high school.


17."A significant event in my life was having a daughter," said Mike Weimer. "I have worked for Penn Manor five years. I sweep the floor, clean windows, bathrooms and set up events."
16. "Last year at Penn Manor as a junior was very long but rewarding and also very fun, I learned a lot and made many friends," said Mac Evarts.



15. "A significant event in my life was going out for the football team in second grade," said senior, Joe Bucek. "This last year was long, but a good year."




14.Colin Koser is a junior at Penn Manor who enjoys powerlifting and training. He is going to CTC for welding for senior year. He is not going to miss being at Penn Manor.



13. Eddie Collazo, a tenth graded, never liked school or being told what to do. This summer Eddie is working two jobs.
12. "Making varsity cheerleading was my significant event," said Bailey McKinnie who said she is adventurous, outgoing, probably different from everybody else. "This year it has been fun, better than the year before in high school.



11. Junior Brad Snyder said he looks up to his parents because they help him through everything. Brad said his favorite memory is playing baseball, where he met many of his friends and won the championship in seventh grade.
10.Science teacher Paul Milot said a significant event in life was reaching the top of a mountain 14,200 feet high on the 4th of July when it was 30 degrees outside. Life in two adjectives "interesting, challenging." Milot said Penn Manor was a place he chose to be, coming from a private school background. He feels he is easy to work with if shown respect.

















9. Brittany Diffendall, a junior at Penn Manor shared her views about junior year and described her life-changing event, which was interviewing Austin Carlile from Of Mice & Men.



8.Senior Courtney Fatta's most memorable moment of high school is coming to school late for PSSAs and prom.


7. Trasee Bleacher is a farm wife who works in the Penn Manor cafeteria part time. Her faith, church and family are the most important things in her life. One day she hopes to go to Australia and be a missionary.


6. Senior Lex Muniz said that graduating high school is a significant event in his life. Muniz said that his life in the beginning was not in his control and now he’s starting to gain more control.


5. For Rebekah Shue, school comes first. Senior year for her was the hardest but the most fun. AP testing was one of the hardest parts of school for her. A significant part of high school was when she started dating her boyfriend.


4."Getting married was one significant event in my life," said Katharine Rodriguez, a Spanish teacher at Penn Manor. "It has been a stressful year, but it has also been really good."





















3. Daysha Conner, freshman at Penn Manor, says the most significant event in her life was "when my little brother was born, it was the most special thing that happened." She describes her life as "an interesting journey." She says her first year in Penn Manor was "fun, but filled with drama."
2. Teacher Rich Brenton said “My plans for this summer include going to Italy for two weeks to see my son.” Brenton’s favorite thing to look forward to this summer is grilling outside all the time.
1. 1. Streeter Stuart is young at heart and married with two kids. Great at baseball but follows football, loves the University of Virginia, and splits wood for fun so he can light his wood stove. 















Authors in order of appearance in the above video: Mily Hill, Angel Torres, Addison Myer, Shane Best, Robbie Conover, Deion Valentin, Devon Reis, Josh Bennett, Trent Sheaffer, Paige Zayas, Cari Concini, Marc Delacruz, Luis Marcelino, John Worthington, Adrienne Eager and Jacqueline Killian.

25 thoughts on “One Hundred Average Joes”

  1. well i like the fact that everyone picked on random people as i heard from a source. Also i like the fact that one of them was me.

  2. What a great feature! I’m impressed by the diversity of the people you interviewed. It really puts into perspective how large the Penn Manor community is. Great job!

  3. Great article,captions,photos and heart-touching words from fellow aspiring Penn Manor students.What else can I not be satisfied with the hard-work of the writers and the photographers.

  4. I really enjoyed reading through everyone’s life changing events. Thank you for putting this together it was great..

  5. Interesting idea. Some recurring ideas in this post struck me. First, a death in the family or the divorce of one’s parents really do shake our very foundations, and as a former teacher who is now reflecting on my career, I wish I had been more sensitive to those students who were going through that. I could have done better.

    Second, it was understandable, but still sad, that so many expressed that school was boring and they couldn’t wait to get out. Teachers know how to make learning fun, but their hands are tied in SO MANY ways as to what they have to do. I do hope that you will someday reflect back on these days as happier than you find them to be right now.

    And third… wait.. someone was wrestling with his brother and his brother caught on fire?? How does THAT happen? You must have been hot THAT day! 🙂

    Good idea for a blog post. Nice job.

  6. Great job! You guys worked hard on this project and it shows. I am very impressed!

  7. I agree with other posters-such a great idea for a project! I work in a small district where we may know each other’s faces and names, but this makes me wonder how well we really do know each other.

    As Jim mentioned, life events and losses change us forever. You don’t often know all that someone else is facing, so this is a good reminder to use compassion before criticism.

    Thanks for sharing this work with us!

  8. This was a very inspiring idea, and I feel that every student in the school deserves a chance to be heard. I didnt know half the people in this article but now I see that Penn Manor is a very diverse and individualistic district. I am pleased to see that I was in this article as well as many other unique students!


  9. I really enjoyed reading all 100 stories and looking at the pictures. I did not know every person, but I recognized almost everyone. Although the captions were brief, they captured the spirit of the featured individuals. What a great project!!

  10. Great idea and great job by the students. It’s interesting reading about “real life” situations.

  11. Mr. McKnight and Mr. Milot may want to invest in pocket protectors–they’re running quite a risk with those pens in their front pockets with no kind of barrier between their shirts and the ink. On a serious note, cool project Mrs. B and English 11. It’s nice to see the panorama of folks that spend close to a third of every day here.

  12. Visual storytelling is perhaps the most profound mode of human expression. Thanks for unlocking the power of these small but mighty personal tales. You should be proud of your accomplishment. Bravo PennPoints staff!

  13. Thank you for publishing the story and excellent photographs. One of the challenges of a large high school is getting to know fellow students as well as teachers who you do not encounter in classes. Great job!

  14. What a great project. Being on the school board has many points of pride and Penn Points is certainly one of them.

  15. How about that Mrs. Baldridge! She is a super teacher who finds ways to connect with kids and to make sure each student feels valued.

    Have a great summer kids. The start of school next year is only 82 away.

  16. What a great project to wrap up the school year. The amount of effort put into this project just shows that all students have the potential to succeed. Everyone has his/her own story, so thank you for finding a wide variety of students to share their stories.

  17. What a great way for students to apply the communication skills they’ve learned in a meaningful activity to end the school year! The photos are well composed and thoughtful. The captions focus on significant reflections from the brief interviews. Your students should feel very proud of their efforts. Well done!

  18. As one of the freshman stated, “life is an interesting journey” and this is an interesting project and one that fosters the journey. Nice idea!!!

  19. This very creative and well-done project is a wonderful means of connecting the PM high school community!

    I appreciate the honesty with which so many interviewees responded concerning significant events in their lives & advice for incoming students.

    I hope that more similarly meaningful projects are forthcoming. Thank you.

  20. What an outstanding project! We are truly blessed to have such talented & creative Teachers & Students at Penn Manor! Keep up the great work!

    Semper Fi,

  21. Great idea! Thanks for finding students, teachers, custodians, secretaries, and others to share a story. Makes the crowds of PM seem much more personable. We need to do this more!!

  22. I’m from Lancaster county and I just want to say that this was a great idea and it was done really well! I enjoyed the diversity of people and answers. Good job 🙂

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