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B(so)PP II - Epsilon: Beloved Daughter (Medium, 2 Hints)

News Type: 
Monday, March 11, 2019

Note: After a long hiatus, the puzzles have returned… Sorry to keep you waiting, but I’ve been very busy. Let’s continue with the story...

You walk out of the room. In the hallway, you run into her again.

“How’s it going?” she says.

“Not bad, you know…”

You show her the mysterious pages you found.

“I found this… it’s very interesting.”

She smiles, as if she’s impressed.

“Wow, you’re good.”

She starts reading it. As she continues reading, however, her smile starts turning into a frown.



“It can’t be…”

“What do you mean?”

“Where did you find this?!”

“In the… umm… hallway?”

She stares at you, her voice getting angrier, her eyes starting to fill with tears.

“What were you doing?!”

“I was just going to…”

She starts to break down.

“YOU’RE NOT SUPPOSED TO SEE THIS!”, she shouts through tears.

“Well, I’m very sorry…”

“You just don’t understand…”

“She’s gone…!”


“He’s gone…!”



Suddenly, it’s quiet.

“Everyone… everything… gone.”

Her voice starts to shake.

“I want to go home…”

She can’t speak anymore. She runs away, sobbing hysterically. On her way out, she drops something, a charm of sorts. You pick it up and inspect it.

When you do, a slip of paper falls out of the charm…

You hear a distant voice call you…

You answer… (answer in lowercase letters)

Hint 1:

Even though you’re far apart… I can still hear you...

Hint 2:

How would I (CH1)?

PBA Food Wars

News Type: 
Friday, February 15, 2019

For most students at PBA, lunch is probably what we all look forward to during the school day.  During lunch you can hang out with your friends, take a break from school work and EAT!

At PBA, we have two lunch providers: 1132 Cafe and Bangkok Chef. It seems that the majority of the students enjoy both caterers but only a few seem to actually enjoy their lunch. Why is that? Could it be the short amount of time we are given to eat or is it the food? It could be both, but seeing all the leftover food that is thrown away after lunch in the trash, it is probably safe to say that it is the food.  

A shoyu chicken plate lunch from 1132 Cafe.

Recently, a survey was sent out asking students for their opinions on the lunch services provided by the school. It asked questions like prefered food caterer options, ratings, and what days of the week students usually order. The food options that were offered was 1132 Cafe; Bangkok Chef; the corner store down the street; and PBA Cafe, which is a student workshop led by Ms. Debbie.

In the results only 27 percent of the student body responded, but of those 27 percent the majority prefered Bangkok Chef over 1132 Cafe. Though the amount of feedback was limited, Ms. Debbie also reassured us that only 25 students on average order school lunch. This also adds to the big question as to why so many students prefer to take home lunch, buy lunch, or not eat anything at all.  

Head of school Josh Hernandez Morse said that he enjoys both lunch providers but believes that there are pros and cons for each one.

Bangkok Chef, he noted, is “a hot meal, portions are big, not deli style and it’s cheaper.” However, he also mentioned that students may Bangkok Chef to 1132 Cafe because it is newer and only started providing lunch to PBA this school year.  

Mrs. Debbie shared similar thoughts about 1132 Cafe.

“I think they get tired of it or bored of it,” she said.

Feedback from the staff is important, but it is equally as important to know what the students actually feel. Senior Evelyn Wong doesn’t order lunch as often as others, but she still has strong opinions on both lunch providers.

“I think that the reason why more students like Bangkok Chef is because of the fact that it is new, cheap, and they have a good variety of food to choose from, as opposed to 1132 Cafe, where the majority of the students are probably tired of it and the price is higher,” she said.  

Junior Alex Harman, who was in charge of distributing lunch to students earlier this school year, also noticed that more students order Bangkok Chef than 1132 Cafe. She shares similar preferences with the student population as she too favors Bangkok Chef over 1132 Cafe.  

Since everyone seem to be leaning more toward Bangkok Chef, I think that it is safe to say that the winner of this battle is Bangkok Chef, at least for now. However, it could be argued that Bangkok Chef’s menu is always the same which could lose the students’ interests in time and no matter who the lunch provider is, someone will always either like or dislike it.  

The Expansion of Music Genres

News Type: 
Thursday, February 7, 2019

In the last couple of years alone, the genres of music have been evolving and expanding at a rate never seen before. In the time that we live in, if you were to stop listening to new music for just a few months, it wouldn’t be surprising to see you totally lost when you got back into it. In fact, put someone on an island without new music for one year and, by the time they got back, their previous ideas and expectations associated with music as a whole would be outdated and no longer accurate.

Most likely, some of their favorite artists wouldn’t be as popular as they used to be; their favorite song that released just a year ago would be considered too old and forgotten; and when listening to current music that falls under the same genre as it did a year ago, they would be left dumbfounded. That is the rapid rate at which music is changing and the boundaries of its genres are blurring. With all of this change taking place, the leaders of the charge are none other than the artists and fans themselves.

The information age that we live in has played a massive role in diversifying today’s genres of music. With the ease of accessible music and plethora of social media platforms that we have today, anyone can become an artist as long as they get enough publicity. Any publicity that gets people talking is good publicity nowadays, which is why artists spread rumors or start drama. The more extreme examples of this can be seen in new artists that are categorized as Soundcloud or mumble rappers. Categorized by their preferred music platform and unclear lyrics, these artists have been basking in the spotlight by committing crimes, throwing out threats, doing good deeds, releasing diss tracks, and by simply attaining reviews regardless of the verdict.

The technology available to us nowadays allows for almost any information to be accessed at any time. This dramatically accelerates the publicity-chasing process and just one story, regardless of the topic, can be the catalyst for an artist to explode in popularity overnight.

It used to be hard for an artist to gain popularity. There were no ways for them to force themselves into the public eye on a scale similar to how they can today. For quick fame, artists had to either know someone in the music industry or they had to get on tv somehow. The only other way for an artist to get their foot into the door and amass a following was through hard work and luck. It didn’t matter if they were talented if nobody heard them -- for artists to attain respect and acknowledgement, they had to persevere until they were acknowledged.

The genres of music are expanding just like the entire universe around
    us! (photo credit: Science News)

Sacrifices had to be made and tolls were paid through blood, sweat, and tears. For instance, Eminem, 2Pac, and Nas, remembered today as some of the most popular icons in the golden era of hip hop, were all discovered through their quality of work and talent. They worked hard and made their own luck, thereby earning respect and loyalty -- two of biggest factors that kept famous artists popular and prevented underground artists from gaining ground.

Because of the increased rate that new music has been released in the past few years, consumers have been spoiled and want new music to drop year-round. This causes fans’ patience to stay at an all-time low, forcing artists to constantly release new music to stay relevant, all while trying to adapt to the swiftly changing times. If an artist fails to release new music every so often or adopt new sounds quickly, it's likely that they will be left in the dust and forgotten. That leaves the door open for new artists who are dying to get noticed.

The more artists in the industry, however, the more diluted it becomes. As more and more artists and genres come into play, the less likely a potential fan is to establish a meaningful, loyal connection with an artist, thereby making it easier and easier to embrace new ones and forget old ones. Regardless, this constant flow of old artists going out and new artists coming in is effective in keeping the well that is the music industry pumping with wild new genres, but the quality of the water is what's at stake. Is the water cold? Are the artists producing good music? Is the water clean? Will the artist have longevity?

With what seems like everyone secretly trying to become a music artist nowadays, it can be hard for a single individual to stand out amongst the crowd. To solve this problem, artists must create their own style, sound, and flow that sets them apart from everyone else. To be successful, they have no other option but to break boundaries and blend new genres. While these artists’ intentions aren’t destructive, they are naive in that this method of gaining fame creates more one-hit wonders then it does superstars.

With artists experimenting so much in attempts to find the next big trend, they lack the habits and traits that would normally form their own style. This is why big one-hit wonder artists like Desiigner or Silento often fail to release successful follow-up albums; either all their songs sound exactly the same out because they don’t want to alienate fans with a new sound, or totally random and crazy in attempts to develop their own style afterwards. This only applies to artists that gain traction quickly. For artists who work hard through longer periods of time such as Kendrick Lamar or Drake, the chances that they will stay relevant once they get famous is higher as they developed both their own individual style and a loyal following.

That is why genres of music have been evolving and expanding at such an insane pace. Since there are more artists now than ever before, there are many different approaches towards music genres. And since all of the main, original genres of the past are already set in stone, well-established and plain, they must be combined with another or be totally revamped in order to create something that will truly stand out.

Nowadays fans play a much larger role in the music industry and express stronger views and opinions without holding back. Loyalty is cast aside, which in turn causes fans to be more accepting of new artists even if they won’t be around for long. While all of these artists continue to release new music to satisfy their fans, they perpetuate a cycle where some must do what others won’t in order to get the attention they crave. And what these artists must do is create entirely new genres, mix old ones, or put their individual spin on things. Whatever they do, they must be ahead of the curve because with how fast music nowadays is changing, by the time they catch up, it will already be too late as the fans will be on to something else entirely.

Have Confidence in Yourself

News Type: 
Thursday, January 3, 2019

Stop overthinking.

Everyone has a goal in their mind that they want to do every day. Some succeed because of how committed they are to doing everything they can do to get to their goal.

According to junior YM Foo, even the simple act of trying can lead to great things.

Sebastian Wind confidently gets ready to go to class. 

“It’s better to try new things because it gives us a chance to have new experiences even if they’re bad,” he said. “Trying your best and being not successful is way better than not doing anything at all because it shows that you actually did something.”

Sophomore Jayden Williams agrees with that sentiment. To him, it’s not necessarily about talent, but effort.  

“Anyone can be successful if you have motivation to push yourself forward,” he said.

There will always be obstacles in the way of you when you’re proceeding towards your goal. But don’t just ignore people when they are saying negative things about you because some of what they say might be facts about who you are. Just accept those facts so you can move on.

As junior Sebastian Wind noted, sometimes moving on “could be easier than you might think.”  

Maybe the challenges in your life are hard for you, but you’re just overthinking it. It’s good to have confidence but don’t be too overconfident about what you’re doing before you’ll regret something later.

Friends Dont Let Friends Eat Fake Poke

News Type: 
Thursday, January 10, 2019

Poke (pronounced POH-kay) has never been easier to get in Hawaii as well as on the mainland United States. You can find it as the cubes of raw fish that you eat at a beach picnic, part of a pu pu platter, at the grocery store, or even while sitting on the tailgate of a truck.

Poke, in all its forms, is indeed the unofficial food of Hawaii, consisting of marinated raw ahi tuna. The simple dish gained popularity within the last three years but has a rich history.

The word “poke” means “to slice” or “to cut crosswise into pieces” in Hawaiian. Native Hawaiians would slice up small reef fish and serve it raw. Sometimes limu (edible brown algae) and kukui nut paste, known as “inamona,” was mixed with the sliced fish to create the dish. Japanese influences during the 1800s contributed to the evolution of the dish, when the fish base shifted to ahi tuna and inamona was replaced with shoyu.

Sophomore Lyla Gonsalves prefers to prepare her own poke using traditional ingredients and shoyu, which is what it’s usually marinated in today.

“I make it with shoyu, limu, and kukui nuts, not with lettuce or just eating it plain,” she said.

A delicious bowl of shoyu ahi poke (image courtesy of AnnaSea).

Poke can not only be eaten alone but also found on top of rice, which is known as a poke bowl. Sometimes, furikake (Japanese seasoning) is sprinkled on the rice. Now, instead of being served on rice, poké can be found on greens, zoodles, and even quinoa.

The options that poke can be found on has been recently created by businesses who have jumped on the bandwagon. Poke has boomed on the mainland since it’s been labeled healthy because of how it’s made raw with vegetables.

Senior Makana Hoapili is shocked that poke has established itself on the mainland since it’s mostly known in the islands.

“I didn’t think it would become a thing on the mainland,” he said.

From a business perspective, poke is customizable and more economical compared to opening a restaurant. A restaurant has requirements such as industrial strength equipment and a vent system. To make the dish, an oven, let alone a full kitchen isn’t needed at all.

Due to the popularity around social media nowadays, almost anything can be transformed to be Instagrammable, which is why various toppings have been added to poke, ranging from watermelon radish to avocado or even Capelin roe. Anything that can make it look colorful will result in more likes.

Although the mainland is changing poke from its original form, the freshness of poke is vital. Many shops are serving poke made from fish that has been caught days or even weeks before and has been treated in order to preserve its color. Fishing is a habit that a lot of locals enjoy in Hawaii and when someone catches a lot of fish, they usually share it with their friends and family, which might be turned into poke.

Gonsalves not only likes to make her own food but believes that knowing where the ingredients come from creates a deeper meaning.

“The fact that I know the person who fished for the food creates more of a connection,” she said.

The mainland may be altering poke but it will always be a part of Hawaii, and for locals, real poke is the taste of home.

“It’s something I can appreciate on the daily,” Hoapili said.

Marching Towards Equal Rights

News Type: 
Tuesday, November 27, 2018

This year marks the second year that PBA has participated in the Honolulu Pride Parade and, although nothing can top the amount of positivity and support from all the participants, the parade itself has a rich history that not many people know about.

It all started with a police raid on June 28, 1969, at the Stonewall Inn located in New York City. The city’s police raided the bar since it was operating without a liquor license and revelers inside were arrested while patrons were handcuffed outside. According to the New York City liquor authority, licenses weren’t given to establishments that served gay patrons.

This was during the 1960s, when people were not as welcoming to the LGBT community so various gay bars became a place of refuge for them. The Stonewall Inn had become a home to many and was considered a sacred bar.

The raid provoked a riot between the bar patrons and the police when a woman was hit on the head by an officer, which caused the police to barricade themselves in the bar. Fueled by anger, the crowd set the barricade on fire and the crowd was later dispersed by the fire department as they put out the flames. Over the next six days, demonstrations happened outside of the bar where thousands of people shared their thoughts on the LGBT community.

This event encouraged people to stand up for LGBT political activism. The first Pride Parade was held in New York City on June 28, 1970 -- one year after the Stonewall riots. The parade was fifty-one blocks long and featured an official chant: “Say it loud, gay is proud.”

Due to everyone’s efforts and support towards the LGBT community, the Pride Parade’s journey has been grueling but all the hard work has paid off, as parades continue to be held in honor of the Stonewall riots. The Honolulu Pride Parade has been held since 1990 and thousands of people have participated in this colorful festival.

This was the first time that freshman Riley Jose has participated in the event. She decided to attend because she thought it would be fun to see so many people coming together for a good cause.

PBA students pose at the start of the pride parade (photo by Blanche Yarnell).

“ I think Pride is important because it’s celebrating our differences and accepting people for who they are,” she said.

Senior Jocelyn Miyashiro attended both the 2017 and 2018 Honolulu Pride Parade. From her experience, she felt more prepared this year since there was more time to plan and she continues to enjoy being there to experience the support towards the community.

“I was very inspired by it because not all the people there were a part of the LGBTQ+ community and it made me happy to see so many supporters,” she said.

The LGBT community has expanded and is now known as the LGBTQ+ community. The community has gone through numerous hardships, from violent crimes done to LGBTQ+ individuals to being sent to “gay conversion therapy.” By attending the parade, people were able to reflect on the difficulties that others had to go through in the past and even today in some places.

“I think that all the people that went through not being accepted as a person or who you choose to love are great role models for what they did,” Jose said.

Miyashiro shares similar thoughts. She believes that these people are inspirational since they have endured the hate from others just because of their difference in sexuality and the community itself is more welcomed now compared to just a few years ago.

“It has inspired me because they have gone through so many hardships as a community and individually yet they’re still proud of who they are,” she said.

Many agree that the Pride Parade is not only a memorable experience but also an eye-opener. Everyone is able to participate in Pride and it’s an opportunity that, according to Miyashiro, you definitely don’t want to take for granted.

“If you’re reading this, you should go to Pride,” she said. “I really hope that PBA will always have a place in the Pride parade.”

The Hype of Supreme

News Type: 
Thursday, October 25, 2018

T-shirts that’ll run you $1,000. Hoodies that go for $2,000. Crowbars that sell for $250 and individual bricks that cost $200. Supreme, the billion dollar streetwear brand has taken the world by storm with their outlandish products and even crazier resell prices.

In 1994, James Jebbia, the founder of Supreme, started up his first store in SoHo, Manhattan. At the time, it was a cool, simple yet secretive shop that sold clothes and skateboards to skaters in the area.

The goal of Supreme was never to make it big one day but rather to provide for open minded, loyal customers. This optimistic attitude of both the brand and its customers did wonders in the earlier years with notoriety spreading quickly through word of mouth.

Eventually, celebrities started to take notice, most notably rappers such as Kanye West, Kid Cudi, and Tyler the Creator. They took Supreme and brought it into the public eye for the first time. They started boosting the brand’s popularity and the public’s demand for it.

Sophomore Lyla Gonsalves, a fan of Supreme’s earlier underground years, isn’t particularly a fan of all the new hype that has been brought to the company.

Hundreds of people line up outside the Los Angeles Supreme store waiting for it to
open (photo credit: Glossy).

“I feel like in the beginning people bought Supreme because they really enjoyed the brand,” she said. “Nowadays people just buy it for the hype. Back then I used to like Supreme more compared to now but as it got more mainstream it got less cool. Everyone just wears it because of the hype rather than actually liking the product, which I don’t agree with.”

On the other hand there are people like senior Daniel Kohn, who enjoys all the hype and attention that Supreme has been getting recently

“I like Supreme because I gotta flex,” he said, referring to dressing in a cool way. “It’s all about flexing.”

The hype surrounding Supreme was also created through the company’s brilliant marketing approach. Supreme has never spent a penny on advertising, they have never sold out and gone commercial, and they aren’t afraid to express their viewpoints and make a statement.

Through the limited quantity releases of their products, over time they have created a market where every single one of their items sell out. From dog bowls to shovels, fans of the brand never hold back in buying something labeled with the Supreme logo.

Along with the hype, however, has come a resale market where sold-out items are marked up and resold at a much higher amount. This has caused a lot of issues where fans of Supreme have to pay ridiculous prices for the items they want.

“I think it is good that the world knows about Supreme,” Kohn said. “What's bad about it though is that you can’t always get what you want. Now you gotta pay a lot more on other websites and most of the people buying Supreme just try to resell it rather than wear it.”

While Supreme continues to gain popularity, it seems to have lost a part of itself along the way. The hype of Supreme has paved a path for the company -- one that conflicts with the ideals of their once simple, secretive shop. Loyalty doesn’t seem common anymore.

“When Supreme was out on the streets more and worn by everyday people who actually liked the brand, it was better because it was still genuine,” Gonsalves said. “When celebrities and influencers started wearing it, they took it to another level and kind of ruined it.”

Memes at PBA

News Type: 
Thursday, October 25, 2018

A common development when dealing with teenagers is the introduction of new memes -- pictures or videos meant to elicit laughter or amusement.

Memes can range from a picture or video that is reused to convey a relatable feeling or funny sentiment different from its original source material. Now that the internet can popularize a meme overnight, it has become very hard to stay up to date with the newest and hottest thing in memedom.

One example of a popular meme is “One Does Not Simply Walk Into Mordor.” This 2005 meme refers to the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the complexity of entering Mordor, home to the trilogy’s villain, Sauron. When used in memeform, it expresses the difficulty of a situation, such as a test: “One Does Not Simply Pass This Test.”

But, according to sophomore Lyla Gonsalves, there are good memes and bad ones.

“A good meme is not so mainstream,” she said.

An example of the "One Does Not Simply Walk Into Mordor" meme (photo credit: imgflip)

To Gonsalves, originality is the most important aspect of a meme and is what separates a good one from a bad one. When looking for memes, Gonsalves frequents Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter, and YouTube.

Seniors Kaci Yamato and Lyla’s brother, Jacob, also know a lot about this subject as the reigning hoss election Meme King and Queen. According to Yamato, she was elected because she likes “to make people laugh” and is “naturally ‘meme quality.’”

Jacob feels that memes have different levels of quality that are directly tied to their usage.

“Bad ones are the ones that are overused, not unique, or don’t die,” he said. “Those become old and unfunny. Good ones I see usually are short lived or iconic.”  

Memes aren’t just seen on the internet. For Yamato, they even influence how she communicates with her peers.

“Honestly, for me, memes sometimes come up when I’m interacting with people,” she said. “Some of my friends, like Warner (Onuma), use memes in basically every sentence.”

Having taken a closer look into meme’s prevalence in PBA students, it can safely be said that its usage varies from student to student. Some students throw out a meme reference every other sentence while others tend to rarely make passing reference to it.

Wherever you fall please be sure to keep calm and meme on.

Behind the Scenes of Camp: A Senior's Perspective

News Type: 
Monday, October 8, 2018

Camp has been a part of PBA’s tradition for many years and it is the seniors’ responsibility to plan the entire three-day event for the school. As a senior for about three months, I’ve just gone through the emotions and struggles that previous seniors have experienced. This is a behind the scenes look at what goes into planning camp.

I have enjoyed camp for the past two years and there is a lot of work in order for it to be successful. Every student will eventually become a senior and, for me, this year is when I received all the duties that come with the title. My class is small compared to previous classes which means that each of us had more work to do, but I learned later that our small size turned out to be beneficial.

We started planning camp towards the end of last school year as juniors -- picking the theme, creating the menu, listing possible activities, and just trying to have a head start. We were placed in three groups: food, logistics, and activities. Since we are such a small class, we ended up helping other groups once our sections were done.

PBA students play sham battle on the second day of camp (photo by Kaci Yamato).

When we first started camp planning, there were not many disagreements and everyone seemed to have an idea of what needed to be done. But when we started the new school year, everything became too much to handle. Camp was quickly approaching and everything needed to be done immediately. Everyone became overwhelmed with stress and we were met with numerous obstacles that we overcame together.

A common obstacle that seniors have to overcome during camp planning is miscommunication. This is why it is important to explain things thoroughly, listen, and ask questions to make sure that everyone is on the same page.

For example, I typed out the instructions on how to make dessert and I thought that we were dying the yogurt with food coloring. It turned out that the whipped cream was supposed to be dyed instead. Since the instructions were printed, I had to notify the teacher in charge of dessert to dismiss the instructions and explain that the whipped cream was being dyed.

Another obstacle is not prioritizing what needs to be done. Camp requires many things and although they all need to be done beforehand, there are various deadlines for each part. This year, we decided to tie-dye shirts, which takes a lot of time and effort. It is easier and less stressful if you plan out what needs to be done each day.

When camp was less than two weeks away, arguments broke out. People were stressed and their emotions got the best of them, but the people in our class forgive easily. We try to understand each other’s perspective, talk it out, and move on from it.

Before we knew it, camp was less than a week away and this was when more physical work was required, such as shopping for groceries, packing the coolers, checking the tents’ conditions, and loading the U-Haul. Figuring out the measurements and amounts needed for each item before going to the store not only saves time but allows others to shop for the items and not have to worry about miscalculations. Packing is essential since food and materials for camp need to be in the U-Haul, so there needs to be at least one person responsible for that section present during packing. Therefore, that person needs to know what we have and where everything is placed.

I think there is only so much you can do to prepare for camp and there is always going to be some minor changes involved. It is clear that camp is a challenge but it is not impossible to accomplish. Previous years have done it, my class has conquered it, and future classes will too.

From my experience, I have a few tips to share which I hope other classes will find useful. An important factor to keep in mind is that everyone has their own ideas so keep an open mind. Not everyone is going to agree on something but compromise and talk it out. When arguments happen, let it go, and move on. Holding a grudge is not worth it and definitely will not help with camp planning. Also, things happen and there are alternatives so just because something unexpectedly causes a change in plans, camp is not ruined. It is your last camp so make it the best one yet.

There is a huge relief and feeling of accomplishment once camp is finished. I feel like we really bonded since we have seen each other when we were beyond stressed, exhausted, happy, and annoyed. Camp could not have been done without everyone’s help. I think that it was absolutely worth all the time and effort and you will realize it too.

PBAs Newest Students: Traveling from Afar

News Type: 
Monday, September 17, 2018

A new year means new students and for PBA it means receiving seven students from places ranging from California to Germany. The new school year is a fresh start for many and although entering a new school can be nerve-wracking, the new students have been fitting in well with the PBA community.

Freshman Jordan Love was initially nervous about coming to PBA since he had been living in Kansas for fourteen years and has only attended public schools.

“I was very nervous about starting high school since it was something new to me and I was in an entirely different state,” he said.

Sophomore Malec Haider has only attended public schools as well and is new to Hawaii from Los Angeles. He immediately noticed the small student population, the range of electives, and how the students’ habits are much better compared to his previous school.

“Classes are a good size and there is a lot more electives than my old school,” he said.

Some of PBA's newest students from outside of Hawaii (from left): Jordan Love,
   Malec Haidar, Sebastian Wind

The school’s education system is different compared to others since PBA goes by cycles and each core class is about two hours long. This may be difficult for some to get used to, but most of the students are adjusting well.

“I like how we only do two core classes instead of the seven periods because that always stressed me out,” Haider said.

Love feels the same way about the school’s curriculum since he used to have a hard time juggling the work from so many classes.

“I think it was a good choice, I feel like I’m learning a lot better,” he said.

Most of the classes at the school rely on technology to do assignments and projects which is different for Sebastian Wind, a junior exchange student from Germany. Wind also noticed how the school does not have a bell system. After attending the school for a few weeks, he realized that it’s the student’s responsibility to get to class on time due to the lack of a bell which is a good habit to practice.

PBA’s staff and students are what welcomes everyone and could make anyone feel as if they have already been a part of this community.

“The familiarity with the teachers and how you can talk to them, it’s like a big family,” Wind said.

Incoming students, especially those from public schools, have noticed how the teachers care for their success and growth. Teachers at the school are guiding students in the right direction and helping them grow into who they strive to be.

“There aren’t a thousand kids walking around and the teachers here care a lot more about each student’s grade, they want everyone to pass,” Haider said.

Wind was nervous at first about attending PBA since he was from an entirely different country but when he attended freshmen orientation, he found out that the school exceeded his expectations. As the first cycle started, he easily made new friends and commented on how everyone is polite and it’s a good community to be in.

One factor that makes PBA different compared to other schools is the various students attending and, for Love, he thinks that it’s an opportunity to make a lot of new friends. Wind believes that PBA is unconventional because of how the entire school is based on Buddhism and the concept is connected to the curriculum. Haider feels that everything that makes up the school is the reason for why it’s distinct.

“This brand new campus, the students, and staff members, all make it seem like a great place to get an education,” Haider said.