Women’s History Month

By: Kyra Richardson, Reporter

Why was March chosen for Women’s History Month? Well, in 1981, congress requested that the President proclaim the week beginning March as “Women’s History Week.” By 1987, after many joint resolutions had passed, March was officially authorized as “Women’s History Month.” March is the month that we recognize and celebrate the achievements and contributions women have made to the United States. 

 Born on July 24th, 1897, and disappeared on July 2nd, 1937, Amelia Earhart was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. In 1920, Earhart went on her first airplane ride, inspiring her to take flying lessons. She bought her first plane, a Kinner Airster, in 1921, which was quickly followed by her earning her pilot’s license in 1923. In 1932, Earhart crossed the Atlantic alone making her, not only the first woman to cross solo, but also in record time. She served as the Ninety-Nines’, an organization of female pilots, first president after she helped found it in 1929. Earhart’s final flight was in 1937 when she and Fred Noonan set out to fly around the world, ending in their disappearance. 

Betty Friedan (born February 4, 1921—died February 4, 2006) was an American writer and feminist. Friedan is most commonly known for her book “The Feminine Mystique,” published in 1963, which dispelled the “happy homemaker” myth. Three years later, she co-founded the National Organization for Women (NOW), a group dedicated to achieving equality between genders. Friedan also helped organize the Women’s Strike for Equality in 1970. In 1976, she wrote another book, “It Changed My Life: Writings on the Women’s Movement.” She continued to publish books that addressed discrimination against women and her experience in civil rights. 

Danai Gurira, born on February 14th, 1978, is best known for roles in “The Walking Dead” and in the Marvel Cinematic Universe films. Gurira stars as Michonne on “The Walking Dead” and as General Okoye in “Black Panther” and in “Avengers: Infinity War.” Both Marvel films are among the highest grossing movies of all time. Gurira is also quite the playwright, her works include “In the Continuum,” “Eclipsed,” “The Convert,” and Familiar.” She also serves as an ambassador for Bono’s ONE campaign, a global movement striving to end extreme poverty and preventable diseases everywhere. In addition, she founded Love Our Girls, an operation that’s fighting to give a voice to females across the world. 

Women make up only 28% of the workforce in STEM fields. The fields of some of the fastest-growing and highest-paid jobs of the future, like engineering and computer science, have some of the largest gender gaps. Even in colleges, men outnumber women majoring in most STEM fields. At ASCTE, we want to fill the prominent gender gap in the STEM fields. 

National Dr. Seuss Day

By: Ace Green, Reporter, Production Manager 

On March 2nd, we celebrate the author, Dr. Seuss; this date being his birthday. Closely affiliated with National Read Across America Week, this day is used to promote reading in small children, much like the author himself. Before appreciating Seuss for his work, it’s important to talk about who he was.

Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, was born on March 2nd, 1904 in Springfield, Massachusetts. The pen name Dr. Seuss was a reference to his dad pushing him to become a doctor. He was known for publishing a total of sixty books, however, he was also a political cartoonist, poet, illustrator, and filmmaker. Unfortunately, Seuss died of cancer in La Jolla, California on September 24, 1991. 

His top selling books were “Green Eggs and Ham” (1960), “The Cat in the Hat” (1957), and “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish” (1960). Many of Seuss’s most well known books were turned into movies. These include, “The Cat in the Hat,” “The Lorax,” “Horton Hears a Who!,” and “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” Despite his first book, “And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street,” being rejected twenty-seven times, Seuss never gave up. This perseverance has inspired many young adults today. 

Theodor Seuss Geisel wrote several books that our generation was raised upon. He encouraged young children across the nation to start reading with his exotic characters and fun rhymes. Seuss’s stories live forever, and so does his legacy.

ASCTE Mascot

By: Ace Green, Reporter, Production Manager 

Since the beginning of ASCTE, there have been suspicions as to what our mascot would be due to ASCTE being a brand new school. Last month, the Student Government Association (SGA) decided it was a necessity to receive student feedback in order to come to a decision.

SGA members sent out the first Google Form, which had a written response question asking each student for a mascot suggestion. The top ten picks were Pythons, Comets, Sentinels, Bolts, Circuit Breakers, Stingrays, Astronauts, ASCTE Nova, Paladins, and Cyber Corgis. 

These top ten picks were put into a second Google Form which was, again, sent out to the student body. This form had a multiple-choice question format, allowing them to pick three of their favorite ideas. Pythons won with a vote tally of thirty-nine, Sentinels being runner-up with a vote tally of twenty-eight, and ASCTE Nova in third place with a vote tally of twenty-five. 

The Student Government had ideas on what they would do with these responses. One idea was that SGA would vote on the mascot, leaving them with the final decision. The second idea was to send out, yet again, another Google Form allowing one last pick. The SGA members voted, and the majority of Team Representatives voted on letting the students decide.

With school-wide opinions at the forefront of this decision, teachers were also allowed a vote. Expecting Python to win again, Representatives were shocked when they received results. The ASCTE Sentinels won with a tally of thirty votes. 

We are excited for our school to finally have a mascot, as it is the face of our new and unique school. However, SGA Representatives are still in need of student feedback. The Student Government of ASCTE is now searching for mascot design ideas. Representatives are allowing student submissions to review in the month of March. If you have any ideas, please talk to one of your Team Representatives.

We are excited to see what some of you come up with!

Edited by: Seth Birdsong

Artificial Intelligence at a Glance

By: Ace Green, Reporter, Production Manager 

When discussing the greatest technologies to emerge in the coming years, it’s difficult to avoid Artificial Intelligence. It seems to be on the news all the time, with new breakthroughs constantly being headliners. It’s rarely mentioned, however, what Artificial Intelligence is, much less how it works.

In short, Artificial Intelligence is the application of self-developing programs. These programs are able to identify patterns in data and use these observations to do things they weren’t necessarily programmed to do.

There are thousands of applications for AI, but today, we’re going to focus on a simpler and more common utility; Image Recognition.

Image recognition is far too complex to be programmed by humans. There are over nineteen trillion possible 1080p images, meaning it’s virtually impossible to program an image identifier by hand or even with an algorithm. Instead, one is able to develop Artificial Intelligence to recognize what the dedicated image is. 

Let’s say we’re going to create an AI called FlowerNet, which will try to tell whether an image includes a flower. Assuming we already have a framework to read images, we would begin by giving FlowerNet thousands of images along with whether the image includes a flower. 

Once the AI has a pool of images it knows to be flowers, it can begin to identify patterns within the images. Perhaps FlowerNet realizes that the images with flowers usually have green pixels arranged in the shape of a stem and that they often have a colorful top to them. Perhaps it discards information that it doesn’t think is helpful. This process is called ‘Training’ an AI.

You might be wondering, though, how can you verify that FlowerNet actually knows what is a flower and what isn’t? Just because FlowerNet can recognize patterns doesn’t necessarily mean that it recognizes the correct patterns. 

Well, just like with people, once an AI is trained, it must be evaluated. For FlowerNet, we will give it images it has never seen, and tell it to respond with whether the image includes a flower. You’ll then see whether the AI correctly identifies flowers or not. 

If they do, then great! FlowerNet is online. If not, then we’ll have to repeat the Training process again, usually with some more data each time. Most AIs need between ten thousand and one million training cycles, so you generally have to automate the evaluation.

And there we go! FlowerNet can be released to the public, and you’re officially an AI expert.

Edited by: Seth Birdsong

African American Representation in the STEM Field

By: Kyra Richardson, Reporter

With February being Black History Month, we want to appreciate the diversity in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) field. You may have heard of famous inventions such as iPhones, eyeglasses and commercial microwaves; but there are various others that are often overlooked. Many of these creations came from the minds of inventors of color and continue to make our daily lives easier. 

The carbon light bulb filament was invented in 1881 by Lewis Latimer. While Thomas Edison is credited with the invention of the first light bulb, Latimer, the son of former slaves, created longer-lasting bulbs that some still use today with tungsten filaments. Latimer actually went to work alongside Edison in 1884 at the Edison Light Company. 

In 1923, Garrett Morgan is most commonly known for his improved three-position traffic light. The third light gave drivers a warning for a stoplight, improving safety at intersections. Without it, the nation would still be directed by the less safe two-position traffic light system. Morgan also created an improved sewing machine, gas mask and made driving safer with the invention of the yield component. Morgan, the son of an enslaved parent, produced all of these ideas with only an elementary school education.

Frederick McKinley Jones received a patent for his invention of refrigerated trucks in 1940. He also co-founded the U.S. Thermo Control Company. This corporation helped preserve blood, food and supplies during World War II. Next time you look in your refrigerator, check to see if you have any products from a grocery store. If so, you can credit McKinley for this convenience.

At ASCTE, we are promoting diversity in the engineering and cyber workforces. We need diversity in the science fields because it is critical to solving problems to the best of our abilities. The multitude of perspectives that they bring to the table allows for a better quality of life for all. 

We support diversity in our school so that we can continue to support the black innovators that are changing the world we live in today.

Edited by Seth Birdsong, Jaelyn Longino, and Tanner Wright