Bear Facts

The student news site of Vestal High School, Vestal, NY

Bear Facts

Bear Facts

2023-2024 Staff


Mitzy Benjamin

I am thrilled to be the advisor for Bearfacts.  We have a wonderful group of insightful writers who bring great ideas to light. Sincerely, it’s my pleasure to help the students publish their voices and be heard.  If you’d...


Rowen Smith

Hi, I’m Rowen! I’m a senior this year and I’m currently the Editor-In-Chief of Bearfacts. I love writing, reading, and spending time with my friends/family. A passion of mine that I hope to pursue in the future is everyth...

Technology Coordinator

Sriram Chakravadhanula

I edit articles and handle some of the technological aspects of the site. I play tennis, read books, and am delving into magic. If you have any questions on copyright let me know! 

Production Manager

Margaret Wood

My name is Margaret, and I am a senior, and the Production Manager of Bearfacts. I am a team captain on the girls varsity swimming and diving team, and I swim the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke most often. I am part of Wind E...

Poetry Columnist

Sindi Zhou

Hello, I’m Sindi, and I will be writing the poetry column this year. When I’m not doing homework, I love to read, especially if I annotate as I go. My favorite authors at the moment are Kazuo Ishiguro and Fyodor Dostoyevsky...

Music Columnist

Keith Dai

Surfing through IMSLP, gliding amongst pages of etudes, listening to Sibelius—your Vestal music columnist is at your service! As a member of both Wind Ensemble and Chamber Orchestra, I hope to bring you the best news our school...

Senior Series Columnist

Ellie Friedman

Hi! I’m Ellie Friedman and I am the Senior Series Columnist. I think we have a lot to learn from each other and I enjoy listening to stories. I love writing and I was a Rising Voices Fellow in 2022, so I have some publishing...

Tech Columnist

Gavriie Singh

Hello, I’m Gavriie Singh, a senior at Vestal High School, and I proudly serve as the Technology Columnist for our school paper. Beyond my passion for all things tech, I find harmony in melodies as an avid violin and piano player....


Adelaide Smith

Writing is essential to me to convey what can't be otherwise. Words are inherently enchanting in a way that I swoon over. Art is my other hobby, predominantly watercolor, and when I'm not writing I'm probably making art, possibly...

Cultural Events Columnist

Amina Haq

Hello! I’m Amina Haq and I’m in 11th grade. I’m a co-columnist with Jia Parikh. We’ll be writing a monthly column about lesser known holidays! My interests include reading, photography, and all things science.

Cultural Events Columnist

Jia Parikh

I’m Jia Parikh, a columnist for cultural events. I’m a junior and this is my third year in Bearfacts and second year being a columnist. I love being a part of the school newspaper; the club is an awesome environment to im...

Recipe Columnist

Macy Schafer

Hi! I am a vestal high school senior and a columnist for the Bearfacts paper. I enjoy writing about baking and cooking, and I have a column about quick and easy seasonal recipes in case you are trying to gain or broaden your baking...

Crosswords Columnist

Alesha Khan

Hello, I am a senior and the crosswords columnist for Bearfacts because I like solving puzzles and thought: why not make them? I like watching movies in my free time and my all-time favorite is Cars. My other hobbies include writin...

Movie Columnist

Jacob Burgin

I’m Jacob and I’m the movie review columnist. I love all things cinema, whether it be television or film. I hope I can get you as excited about movies as I am!

Movie Columnist

Stephanie Bogart

Hi, I’m Stephanie and I will be co-writing a column reviewing everything movies! I’m a big cinema fan and I hope my reviews will give you some new movies and shows to binge in your downtime. :)

How-To Columnist

Hannah Salim

My name is Hannah Salim and I’m a Senior this year. I enjoy chemistry, art, and chess. I’m excited to share some helpful tips through my How To column!

Video Games Columnist

Holden Schafer

My name is Holden Schafer, and my role/position/title in Bearfacts is a columnist. The column that I write about is a certain game that would fit with the current month. Some hobbies of mine include things like building blocks...

Astronomy Events Columnist

Eva Weseman

I am Eva, a ninth grader and a monthly columnist. I like reading, baking, and writing. My column is about current astronomy events, but I like writing about meteorology, history, and all sorts of topics.

Bad Dad Jokes Columnist

Joy Xiao

My name is Joy Xiao and I am a junior. I joined Bearfacts this year and I'm the “Bad Dad Jokes” columnist. In my free time I enjoy playing volleyball and dancing!  


Faris Shamma

Hello! My name is Faris Shamma and I am a junior who is returning to writing for Bearfacts. I have a wide range of hobbies, but my most beloved are creative writing, watching films from various regions and cultures, researchi...


Anny Yan

Hello, I am Qing Yan, but you can call me Anny instead. I am a journalist for Bearfacts and this is my first year here. I play the trumpet for wind ensemble and marching band, and the piano outside of school. I like to do puzzles...


Matt Zahirovich

Hi! I’m Matt Zahirovich and I write for Bear Facts. This is my first year in Bear Facts and I joined by accidentally walking into the room. I enjoy fencing outside of school and I sing for Vestal Voices. I hope I can provide yo...


Hannah Smyk

I’m Hannah Smyk, a junior here at Vestal. I’ve lived in Vestal my whole life, and my parents are both originally from Binghamton. I enjoy playing volleyball and I’m fairly active around school: participating in Student Govern...


Leila Shahrouzi

Hey there, my name is Leila Shahrouzi! I am a Junior with a passion for poetry and English in general. I love provoking deeper discussions when it comes to controversial topics and annoying my teachers by putting little doodles in th...


Hannah Nemecek

Hello! My name is Hannah Nemecek and I’m a journalist for Bearfacts. I play volleyball and I'm also on the track team. Along with that I also help with the Unified Basketball team and am part of the Mental Health Awareness club.


Arin Miller

Hey, I'm Arin, a transgender student who has been attending Vestal since Kindergarten. I am a freshman who loves writing horror stories. I have a lot of mental health issues and perspectives on mental health that I would love...


Maheen Kashif

Hi, my name is Maheen and I am a freshman at Vestal High School. I joined Bears Facts originally for my friends, however, I have grown to love the community that Bearfacts offers. My love for writing has expanded over the past...


Isabelle Gindi

My name is Isabelle Gindi, I am a freshman, and I write for Bearfacts! I have 9 siblings, 2 cats, and 2 dogs. I play a lot of different instruments but my priorities are voice and guitar. I really like post-grunge rock, nu-metal...


Mika Friedman

My name is Mika, and this is my first year as a journalist on Bear Facts. I love to read historical fiction, play flute, and obsessively play the game 2048. My puppy is the cutest ever, and my dream is to walk on the moon. I like...

Dear Sofia Columnist

Sofia Moroz

I’m Sofia, and I do an advice column for Bearfacts. This is my first year and I decided to join because I enjoy writing and am always looking to improve! Outside of Bearfacts I am a part of the Science Olympiad team and enjoy...