Academic Team: A place where “no knowledge is useless knowledge”

Academic team members quiz one another during practice to prepare an upcoming competition.

Sydney Murrin, Editor - West Campus

Many students complain that most of the information they learn in high school they will never use again. However, students on the academic team need all the knowledge they can get to be successful.

Many might raise the question, “What is the academic team?” or “What do they do?”, as it isn’t a “typical” or well-known sport that requires athleticism, and many participants of the team go unrecognized when competing in tournaments.

“The [academic] team is [made up of] a group of people that love knowledge, facts, and understand that knowledge is power and [they] have fun with it,” said Ivelisse Lynch, the team adviser, who is also a bilingual instructional assistant at West Campus.

When competing with the MCHS Academic Team, the most important muscle is their brain. This team provides an opportunity for students to use all the knowledge they’ve collected over the years and put it to use.

 The team is comprised of students of all grade-levels from East and West Campus. Lynch says the only requirement is a love for learning.

Aside from giving students a huge advantage in trivia, Academic Team also provides a lot of flexibility, which is rare in the extracurricular world.

Cassandra Netols, a senior, third-year member, and co-captain of the varsity academic team is also involved in the National Honors Society, Student Leadership Team, and Spanish Honors Society. She explained that being on the academic team works well with her schedule and it is a place for her to make friends and have fun.

“Sometimes we study just like you study for a test,” Netols said.  “we take the packets and quiz each other. Other times, we set up a buzzer system, sort of like on Jeopardy, and someone reads the questions and you buzz in. It’s a lot of fun.”

Shane Spatol, a freshman at West Campus has enjoyed his first year on the team so far.

“I really like learning and growing with other people,” he said.

Already, being new to the team, Spatol will be the captain of the varsity team next year as a sophomore and is looking forward to working on his leadership skills and improving the team’s overall record.

This year, the team competed in The Fox Valley Conference in Crystal Lake, the IHSA Scholastic Bowl Regionals in Belvidere, and The Masonic Scholastic Bowl Regionals in Rockford.

After placing seventh at The Fox Valley Conference, but not advancing to quarterfinals, Lynch said the team plans to make some changes for next year.

“We feel strongly that we will improve our standing next year with more aggressive recruiting and a better-planned curriculum, currently in progress,” Lynch said.

Those looking to build their knowledge banks and join Academic Team can contact Mrs. Lynch for more information.