The Truth on Teen Pregnancy


Over the years, it’s been proven that teen pregnancy rates are significantly higher in the U.S. than many other developed countries, including Canada and the United Kingdom, according to the Office of Adolescent Health.

Though teen pregnancy is typically a touchy subject to talk about, Sue Hoffman, the director at Tender Care in Hanover, explains why it really is important to talk about the consequences and responsibilities childbearing comes with.

Sue explained that nationally, only 28 percent of the fathers of the child come to the classes and pregnancy tests with the mother. Most of the time, they are no longer together when they come in.

Sue then began to elaborate on the fact that giving child birth during teen years impacts the development of a growing teenager because their bodies are not yet fully developed. Most women that gave birth during teen years are found to be shorter, their bones don’t finish developing, and most of them had c-sections.

She also said that economically, the younger you are, the less money you’re going to have to support a growing family. Therefore, places like Tender Care receive donations and when a teen mother is in need, they can help her out.

18 percent of girls and women that come in for help and support at places, such as Tender Care, are between the ages of 14-20 year olds, Sue told me.

On Tender Care’s website, it states, “It exists in hope that women will make “a positive choice.” 92% of women planning to abort chose life after their visit with Tender Care.”

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Mandatory service hours: Is it a good or bad thing?

Some student volunteers at Dover Area Community Library come because they want to give back and help out. Others might be there because their school mandated it.


The entrance to the Dover Area Community Library

According to George Matthew, the supervisor and volunteer coordinator for the summer reading program at Dover Area Community Library, required service is favorable for kids in some ways.

“The problem with it is service becomes more of a chore than anything. It’s a ‘have to do’ as opposed to something they are called to do,” Matthew said.
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Will new regulations hinder volunteerism?

New state requirements will affect many people, including teens, volunteers, and those applying for a job working with minors. Recent changes to state law now require “comprehensive criminal and child abuse background checks” for employees and volunteers having contact with children.

If you are an employee of child care services, a person 14 or older applying for a paid position working with children, a volunteer responsible for the welfare of a child or having direct contact with children, or a school employee, then you must complete two state background checks and a national FBI background check. The state background checks, Criminal History Record and Child Abuse Clearance, are $8 each and take 10-15 minutes to complete online. However, as of July 25, the fees for these background checks have been waived for volunteers. The third required check, the FBI Federal Criminal History Record, is the most expensive ($28.75) and takes the longest, 2-3 weeks on average to receive results.

However, there is one  exception for the FBI check. If you are applying to be a volunteer or are an employee under the age of 18 and have lived in Pennsylvania for the previous 10 years you may “swear or affirm in writing” that you have not been convicted of any crime in another state that would disqualify you from volunteering.

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Summer Reading with the Help of York County Libraries


Summer is in full swing. Whether it is by the pool, in a hammock, or during those long car rides to dream vacations, books seem to always work their way into busy schedules.

One way this occurs in York County is through the York County Libraries Summer Reading program.  Even though children grow out of the “regular” reading program at the age of 11, there is a program for ages 12-17. The program allows teenagers to track their reading minutes and get cool prizes depending on the amount they read. This entices members to read, creating a positive link to reading and having fun.  Continue reading “Summer Reading with the Help of York County Libraries” »

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A European photo journal: Spain (Days 1-5)

Day One: It would be a summer of firsts. At least, that’s what I told myself as I stood in my school’s parking lot at 11 a.m. on a muggy, York summer morning. My pink luggage clasped tightly in my hand, I was about to board a bus that would take me on adventure I’d never been on before. It’d be my first time traveling without family members, my first time on a plane in years and my first time setting foot in five European countries. A summer of firsts indeed.

Before I had signed up for this trip, at the beginning of my junior year, I had always heard people talk about their travels to Europe as being the greatest trip of their lives. It was, as they described it, a way to figure out who they truly were and what life was about. While I already had a pretty good idea of who I was as a person, the chance to gain a little more enlightenment about the world certainly appealed to me. And, after spending the past couple of summers cooped up in York County, I had become stricken with a serious case of wanderlust. Which is exactly why I was so eager to tell my mom about the trip my Spanish class was offering for the summer. Two weeks spent in Spain, France and Italy being immersed in different cultures, visiting historic landmarks and, of course, stuffing my face with Italian cuisine sounded like the escape I had been searching for. And to my surprise, my mom agreed.

So, here I was, nearly seven months later with bags packed and good-byes already said waiting to board the bus to lands never before seen. It was the trip of a lifetime. A summer of firsts. Yet, I couldn’t help but feel a twinge of nervousness and uneasiness. I was going to be away from home for two weeks, which I’d had no issue with in the past, but now, I’d be on an entirely different continent with people who I barely even knew (I go to a pretty big school, after all). What if I missed my family too much? What if I ended up in the real life version of the movie Taken? More importantly, what was my poor puppy going to think of my long absence?

And, while these thoughts scared me, I knew that a person would never get anywhere if fear was the only thing keeping them at bay. So, with a final wave to York County, I left with the group to board a plane to Madrid.


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The reality of teen drinking and driving



Pennsylvania has strict laws on drinking and driving, but some teens still haven’t gotten the message. Driving while drunk is dangerous, not only for the driver, but others on the road. According to MADD, almost a quarter of car crash deaths for teens are due to underage drinking. This is becoming a major problem in the U.S and locally.
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Keeping work in the family at York Central Market

Central Market House

Central Market House

Picture the modern American family, every member rises around 6 a.m. to eat breakfast and get ready for a day at work or school. Mom and Dad go to their separate jobs on opposite ends of town and the kids get on the bus and head to school. Summer comes and the parents schedule remains the same, while the children’s becomes more lenient and they are offered more time to relax. With relaxation comes some responsibility, though. If the kids want to go to the pool and get ice cream, they need money to do it, so they need a job. While some of the teens can request off from their jobs to go on a vacation, some teens work for a family business and are not allowed to take off because their participation is vital for the business to function.
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York Catholic class of 2019 looks forward to the future

It seems like just yesterday the York Catholic class of 2015 was beginning the final leg of our high school career and living large in the cramped, hallowed hallways of YC. Fast forward nine months, we are suddenly standing on a very hot stage in a traditional gold or green robe accepting our diplomas. Where did the time go?

Suddenly all the plans we made for college are coming right around the bend as we become the new freshman class of 2019. Although we might be going our separate ways, nothing can dampen the excitement we feel about college. We all share similar hopes, dreams and fears as we embark on this new adventure. Here are some thoughts from college-bound York Catholic graduates:

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Teen Takeover: Kirsten Nicholl

My name is Kirsten Nicholl and I’m a new member of Teen Takeover this year. I joined Teen Takeover because I have the goal of either becoming a Sports Journalist or a Host/Reporter at NFL Network. Joining Teen Takeover will help me pursue that goal.

In my free time, you can find me listening to music, reading a good book, watching ESPN, or hanging out with my friends and family. I did cheerleading from age 3-14. This year, I wanted to start focusing on my career path. Therefore, I decided to become a manager for my school’s football team.

I’m pleased to say that I’m a part of Teen Takeover!



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Want to be recruited by a college? Here are some tips for athletes

Many athletes who play at the high school level want to continue their career in college, and they want to be recruited by a great coach. There are many steps to being recruited, but some athletes are not aware of how difficult it can be to stand out to coaches.

Here are some tips for all athletes who want to be recruited by a college coach from people who go or have gone through the process.

Personalized contact: According to Russ Rose, the women’s volleyball coach at Penn State University, coaches look for an athlete who has the skills,and is a good teammate. Rose says when reaching out to a coach you must make your email personalized to that college. Include the basics such as height, position, school, hometown, your GPA and SAT or ACT scores, and why you want to play for them and go to that college. Make sure this email is only to the one coach and not to a group of 20 schools. Rose said he wants players who want to play for him, and not as their fourth choice.

Watch your grades: College coaches, such as Rose, look for academic performance as well as athletic ability. Rose wants players who exceed not only on the court, but in the classroom too. All your grades, starting freshman year, count towards you getting into college. Make sure that your GPA and your SAT or ACT make you stand out from the other players. Rose suggests that you take your SAT the summer after your freshman year.

Put yourself out there: One piece of advice from Penn State women’s volleyball setter, Bryanna Weiskircher, is to get your name out there, whether it is through videos, emails, or recruiting coordinators. She says do not be afraid to contact a coach, and let them know you’re interested. Weiskircher suggests making a recruitment video of your basic skills and some unedited game film. Send unedited game film because coaches want to see your game as a whole not just highlights, she said. Weiskircher recommends keeping the videos around ten minutes.

Attend camps:Weiskircher suggested attending camps that the colleges you are interested in. That gives the coaches a chance to see you play live and watch how you interact with other players. Attending these camps shows coaches how you can mesh with a team, and it shows them your competitive edge, says Weiskircher. Coaches are looking for skills, but they also look at the players who are positive and work well with their teams.

Stay calm:One of the most important things about college recruiting is to not freak out about it, says Weiskircher. She says that there is a school for everyone, and just because you do not commit your junior year in high school doesn’t mean you can’t or won’t play in college.

“Recruiting is a process, and everyone belongs somewhere,” she says.

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