The Epitaph’s last Bar-On Brief

And with that, for the last time as an HHS student, I rest my case


It has been an honor publishing for you.

The Bar-On Brief: A weekly column

So this is it. This is Bar-On Brief #63, the last column I will write for The Epitaph.

This is also the last day I am a student at Homestead High School. We seniors have been in our own bubble these past few weeks. We did not spend our days cramming for final exams. Instead, we marched in at the walk out rally, we received our senior hearts, cried at baccalaureate and united at senior sunset.

And today, we graduate. Today, I lose my authority on the school paper, and I surrender my editor position to the next batch of talented leaders who will take over.

It has been an honor working on The Epitaph for the past three years. I have met some of my best friends and some of the most inspiring students and teachers through my time on this paper.

I wish everyone on the staff nothing but the absolute, very best. Special shout out to the members of this year’s senior editorial board. The following individuals cannot get enough recognition for the hours they spent making sure every inch of HHS is properly covered. Since they cannot feature themselves in the paper, it is my privilege to finally print their names elsewhere besides the byline.

So here is to the people who I have had the pleasure of working with for at least two years. They will also graduate alongside me:

Desmond Kamas, Raven Bautista, Gabby Mrozowski, Katie Snell, Noor Baig, Brittany Prock, Michael Huang and Rachel Hildebrand. While every one of these names will live with me forever and all of these people will remain my friends, there are two people I want to thank from a journalism standpoint.

Rachel Hildebrand. This is not only for being an amazing partner as editor in chief, but for helping me make the best decision I made in high school, joining The Epitaph. If I hadn’t seen Rachel when picking up my schedule, I never would have asked to switch into journalism, just a week before school started. I’m sincerely glad I did.

Secondly, to Noor Baig. Noor has been more than just a lifestyles editor. She has probably had the hardest job on staff because she had to deal with me more than anybody else. Noor is the first person who reads every Bar-On Brief, well before any other editor gets a glance and way before it is published. Thanks to her, my opinions are edited and are made more clear. She truly embodies the “perfect editor” title.  

I would also like to take time to honor three adults who, after graduation, will have no authority over me. I will, however, admire and respect them all the same. Nathalie Owsley, Greg Giglio and Nick Ferentinos.

Formerly known as “Queen Calderon,” journalism adviser Nathalie Owsley has been there from the beginning for me. She accepted me into the journalism class thanks to the last-minute email I sent her after sophomore year round up. She has been my mentor and has kept me in check when emotions have run wild in the newsroom. She has been the person I look to when I am lost, and she will continue being the person I look up to.

As for principal Greg Giglio: I’m sure I’ve given him more headaches than he can count over the years. But he has truly been a remarkable person to work with. He has been open about sharing information with me, he has trusted me to be reasonable and he has had his fair share of jokes. From one journalism major to another, thank you.

This column would not be complete without honoring the legendary Nick Ferentinos. I am thankful Nick came in to critique our paper my sophomore year. I am honored to have had several conversations with the man who has been an inspiration in my life to seek nothing but excellence. May he rest in peace.  

I also want to thank all the illustrators and photographers who have helped make these articles appealing to the audience. Lastly, I wish the best of luck to next year’s two editors in chief Kira Garlick and Elinda Xiao. I know we are in good hands.

And to all those who have read The Epitaph’s work, keep reading. I guarantee you won’t find your time wasted.

Now, a little about me.

It hasn’t been easy coming up with article ideas every single week of school for the past three semesters. There have been several times where I was sure I would not be able to find something worthy enough to share with all of you. But topics always came, sometimes magically. There have been crunch times where I had to finish my thoughts just hours before I would send it for editing and eventually hit the publish button.

Regardless, I am ready for more of those challenges. I plan to keep The Bar-On Brief alive by writing for the University of Southern California’s newspaper The Daily Trojan. I hope to use the column as a platform for a talk show hosted on Annenberg TV News.

If you enjoy reading my work, or if you hate it so much that you want to keep up-to-date with the awful opinions I offer, I encourage you to follow me on Twitter, where I’ll publish supplements to  The Bar-On Brief. Alternatively, hit that follow button on and get an email notification every time I publish an article on any platform I may be working on.

Thank you for the privilege of your time every week. Thanks for clicking on these columns, and I hope you all continue to do so. It has been an honor to publish for you.

And with that, for the last time as an HHS student, I rest my case.


The Bar-On Brief is a weekly column that runs Thursdays.

Follow Shauli Bar-On on Twitter @shauli_baron