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  • Portland High School

The Raider Wrap: February 2018

The Raider Wrap is the monthly Portland High School newsletter that is sent to PHS families. The Raider Wrap contains all sorts of information that may be of interest to high school families, such as PHS activities, college information, and community resources.

Science Olympiad

This is the second year PHS is participating in Science Olympiad. Competitions are like academic track meets, consisting of a series of 23 team events in areas such as genetics, earth science, chemistry, anatomy, physics, geology, mechanical engineering and technology. By combining events from all disciplines, Science Olympiad encourages a wide cross-section of students to get involved. Emphasis is placed on active, hands-on group participation. Teamwork is a required skill in most scientific careers today, and Science Olympiad encourages group learning by designing events that forge alliances. For example, in Elevated Bridge, an engineering whiz and a kid from wood shop can become gold medalists. Similarly, a talented builder and a student with a good science vocabulary can excel in Write It Do It, one of Science Olympiad's most popular events. Currently, we have PHS students in all 23 events. The culmination of nearly 300 Regional and State tournaments (and about 100 practice Invitationals!) is the Science Olympiad National Tournament, held at a different university each year. This rotating system gives students the opportunity to visit new parts of the country and tour colleges they might consider for their undergraduate studies, and provides a memorable experience that lasts a lifetime.


This year Portland High School is participating in First Robotics. First Robotics is a robot building competition between high schools all over the world. Each year a new game is announced and students must design a robot to complete the mission. The game was announced on January 6th, in a big kickoff event on Michigan State's Campus. We now have 6 weeks to build our robot to complete the mission. This year the mission is to design a robot that can lift cubes to put onto a platform as well as push cubes to certain areas of the arena. We work the 2 other teams during each game to complete the mission and gain as many points as possible. The teams that make the most points will move on to the State tournament and then possibly the World Championship. Our team consists of 12 students and 2 coaches. We also have privilege of being supported by THK Rhythm Automotive. They have supplied us with parts as well as their knowledge in mechanical and electrical design, to help us achieve our robotic goals. If you are interested in helping with coding for this project, please contact Dean of Students, Dave Sheppard,

Heartlands Institute of Technology (HIT) Open House

HIT is hosting its annual Open House on Thursday, February 15th from 4:00-7:00pm. This event is free and open to the public! Bring your family and enjoy a guided tour of the career/​college prep programs. This includes a tour of the Aviation Technology program located at the Ionia County Airport, SMAT campus.


THK/PHS Parternship

THK Rhythm Automotive is having a great year so far. We have six Portland High School Students working for us from 4-8:00 p.m. in our Part-time After School Program. The program has been a success for both parties. THK has talented and positive High School associates working a standard 4-8 p.m. time slot with optional overtime opportunities Yes, they are learning important job skills. Not only did they apply for the position, they also interviewed and went through the hiring process. On the job, they are learning blueprint reading, basic measurements, hands-on training in the use of specialized gauges/tooling and gaining exposure to the world of manufacturing. They "clock" in and out and follow numerous work rules/policies as full-time employees do. After graduation, these six associates are automatically considered for the summer full-time program without reapplying! Quotes from the High School associates are: "THK is a great job with good hours that you can count on." "The pay is good." "The co-workers have been great." "We have people to turn to when we have questions."

Attention Juniors-soon-to-be-Seniors: You may want to consider the Part-Time After School Program this fall. You must be 18 years old. This is a great opportunity for all high school seniors, men and women. As for graduating seniors, who are 18 years of age, THK will soon be recruiting for summer full-time work. This is a temporary summer program involving 40 hours per week with some weekend overtime. The program typically runs from April to August. We have a number of returning college students who like to work during the summer months to earn additional money for school. We hope to see more Portland High School students working with us.

If you have any questions, please contact THK Human Resources at 517-647-0260 or 517-647-0328.

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