School News: Skiing and High-Tech Spying
Panthers Finish Season With Highs, Lows
By Danielle Ryan, LCHS Ski Team
Last week Loveland Ski Area hosted the CHSAA Alpine Skiing State Championships Thursday and Friday March 11th and 12th. With the impending snow getting delayed in the forecast the racers were greeted with beautiful days of low winds, mild temperatures, challenging terrain and firm snow conditions. After a year with smaller field sizes and a truncated race schedule the State Championships harkened back pre-COVID levels of competition with 71 competitors in each gender representing about a dozen schools.
The Panther men competed Thursday and faced several challenges. The lack of training rigor in the face of challenges created by COVID-19 in all aspects of athletics this year was evident. Three of the four Panther competitors crashed early in the Giant Slalom on the steep course and firm snow conditions. Sophomore Eddie Glaser, the sole Panther to earn a GS result, finished 48th overall. The second run offered a brighter glimpse for the afternoon as all four boys finished the course.
The slalom races presented a new set of challenges with very tight and tough course sets and several tricky combinations that led to over a third of the field to not finish both runs. Sophomore Jace Peters led the pack this time finishing 34th overall. Freshman Brady Potts followed narrowly behind in 36th. Sophomore Matthew Cairns was looking for speed till he fell in the first run and lost a ski while Eddie Glaser had a solid run but missed a gate near the finish.
“While not a single one of our 4 athletes had the day they wanted, I am still proud of their attitudes, sportsmanship and desire to learn,” said Coach Ben Cairns. “They showed dignity and class and bounced back from crashes and disappointment to put in some solid skiing.” The nordic and alpine Panther men finished 9th overall.
The Panther ladies competed on Friday. The more veteran squad started off the day strong in the Giant Slalom. Junior Gwen Ramsey led the pack and finished 14th overall. Sophomore Rowynn Slivka finished 29th, Senior Cassidy Gillis finished 39th, and Sophomore Maya Nagel finished 51st. Freshmen Lucia Zettler and Kiera King also represented the Panthers but both crashed during the Giant Slalom runs.
The slalom races offered tough but more manageable courses than the men faced. Ramsey led once again in 25th, Slivka in 31st, and Freshman Kiera King became the final point scorer for the Panthers finishing 49th. Gillis had a solid first run finishing 33rd but straddled a gate in the 2nd run near the finish. Lucia Zettler hiked in her first run but finished 55th in the second.
Overall the nordic and alpine Lady Panthers finished 5th as a team behind Aspen, Summit, Middle Park, and Vail Mountain School but still ahead of larger teams like Steamboat, Battle Mountain, Evergreen and Nederland.
The Panthers say goodbye to three Senior girls this year. “Taylor Duel with her wild style and impressive GS skiing her Junior year which saw her make the All State team and represented in big mountain competitions, Michaelah Main who has been a solid all around athlete and skimiester for many years and Cassidy Gillis—our calm solid and dependable leader these last few years on the alpine side. Those of us who work in schools and coach know we do it to see the kids grow, develop and hopefully take their skiing into life, but it’s still a little sad when they move on,” reflected Cairns. “Congratulations to these wonderful young women on great High School ski careers and on being great people.”
Teaching the Ethics of Location Privacy
By Carrie Click, Colorado Mountain College
Do the benefits outweigh the harm of global positioning systems and other tracking devices? Dr. Dara Seidl, Colorado Mountain College associate professor of geographic information systems, recently completed a yearlong fellowship with the American Geographical Society, to study privacy issues. Her findings are now framed in an eight-part series of short educational videos.
The AGS initiated the EthicalGEO Fellowship in September 2019. Seidl, who joined CMC’s faculty last fall after earning her doctorate jointly from San Diego State University and the University of California at Santa Barbara, was one of seven fellows selected from academia, government, and business to conduct research and fieldwork on how geographic systems are used in collecting location data, both nationally and worldwide.
Seidl created the Geoprivacy Video Series, a resource for educators teaching ethical issues related to the collection of location data. Her videos cover topics from the potential to falsely identify crime suspects to using GPS data to track shopping and dining habits of private citizens.
Each video link contains a short film and a PDF of activities, articles, and discussion points that high school and college instructors are using to enrich their conversations about data privacy.
VIDEO: License Plates – Geoprivacy Education Series
VIDEO: The Bike Thief – Geoprivacy Education Series
Although Seidl’s AGS project concerns serious ethical issues, the videos are also entertaining.
In “License Plates,” she illustrates how repossession companies use what are called “spotters” to drive around neighborhoods with specially equipped vehicles. The spotter photographs and runs data searches on license plates to identify vehicles whose owners have defaulted on their car loans.
In the video, Seidl is riding shotgun with a spotter, who is incognito behind a giant horseshoe mustache, baseball cap, and sunglasses. Seidl is off-camera filming and interviewing him, though the interchange between them is tense. He is brusque and guarded. However, Seidl said she never felt threatened.
“Oh no, he’s my fiancé,” she said with a laugh. Seidl recruited Kyle Walsh and other volunteers to act in the videos; Walsh also lent his acting chops in another of the videos, “The Bicycle Thief.”
Besides using the videos in the GIS courses she teaches at CMC Leadville, CMC Steamboat Springs and CMC Spring Valley at Glenwood Springs, Seidl is working on a distribution plan to share the videos with more campuses, colleges, universities and high schools.
“In the past 10 years, our capacity to collect and store data has grown exponentially,” she said. “Privacy protection and human rights are topics for discussion. These videos can give us an opportunity to acknowledge that this is going on and talk about it.”
VIDEO:Followers – Geoprivacy Education Series
VIDEO: Text Messages – Geoprivacy Education Series
VIDEO: Applicants – Geoprivacy Education Series
VIDEO: Smart Energy – Geoprivacy Education Series
VIDEO: GPS Tags – Geoprivacy Education Series
VIDEO: Dragnet – Geoprivacy Education Series