Music Awards 2015

Varsity Choir’s Success at MSVMA Choral Festival

Thursday, March 19, 2015

On Thursday, March 19, the Pinckney Community High School Varsity Choir, under the direction of Rachael Nieman, participated in the annual Michigan School Vocal Music Association District IV Choral Festival at Walled Lake Northern High School. The choir performed two pieces on stage for a panel of judges: O Sing Out Forever written by Henry Purcell and arranged by Patrick Liebergen and Musica Dei (The Gift of Music) written by Mary Lynn Lightfoot. The choir was accompanied by Susan Snow. After the performance on stage, the Varsity Choir received a clinic from Dr. Brandon Ulrich of Stoney Creek High School. He expressed later to Miss Nieman that he was impressed by the amount of change the Varsity Choir was able to make during the clinic, especially in regards to their overall tone and understanding of the style. In the final portion of Choral Festival, the Varsity Choir was asked to demonstrate that they could sight sing a new piece of music, in three parts, using just the starting note and the solfege syllables.

According to the judge’s comments, the strength of the Varsity Choir was their energy, preparedness, poise, posture, focus on the conductor, and solid three part singing. The choir was especially successful in the sight singing portion where they earned a total of 26 points out of a possible 30 points. In the end, the Varsity Choir scored a total of 89 points out of a possible 120 from all four judges earning them a certificate representing a good performance at District Choral Festival. Overall, it was a positive experience for the members of the Varsity Choir.

MSBOA State Solo & Ensemble Festival

Saturday, March 21, 2015

A total of fifteen events from both the High School Bands and Orchestras qualified for the Michigan School Band and Orchestra Association State Solo and Ensemble Festival this year. In order for an event to qualify for States, the performers must earn a first division rating at District Solo and Ensemble which occurred in mid-January. Here is the list of events from the Symphony Band and Wind Ensemble that qualified this year:

Sophia Coke, proficiency II flute solo

Noah Brady, 9th Grade clarinet solo

Olivia Welling, 9th Grade clarinet solo

Anna Wilmanowicz, proficiency I clarinet solo

Katrina Gensterblum, proficiency II clarinet solo

Julianna Welling, proficiency II alto saxophone solo

Samantha Krieg and Jacob Holt, percussion duet

Emma Scott and Carter Bonifas, trumpet duet

Flute Choir: Taylor Nash, Macie Toy, Casey Taft, Hava Topolski, Maren Krajacic, Rachel Flickema, and Sophia Coke

Clarinet Choir: Yannick Christensen, Katrina Gensterblum, Emily Ball, Matthew Anderson, Kara Sorek, and Becca Murphy

State Solo and Ensemble was held at Chelsea High School on Saturday, March 21. Earning first division superior ratings were Olivia Welling, Samantha Krieg, and Jacob Holt. Earning second division excellent ratings were the flute choir and clarinet choir. Sophia Coke, Anna Wilmanowicz, and Katrina Gensterblum all performed well in their proficiencies. Congratulations to all of the students who represented Pinckney Community High School at State Solo and Ensemble Festival.
Dustin S
The Skills U.S.A. Competition for automotive was held at Washtenaw Community College this year. High Schools representing the Southeastern District of Michigan send their top students to compete in the categories of Master Tech, Electrical, Brakes, and New Car Prep.  Dustin Szczygiel, a senior from Pinckney High School competed in the Electrical category and took First Place with a score of 111.  This score was 29 points higher than the closest competitor.  As the first place winner, Dustin was awarded a tool bag full of tools and test equipment, a $12,500 scholarship, and a chance to compete at the State Level Competition at DeVoss Center in Grand Rapids of April 17-19th. Dustin will attend Central Michigan University in the fall.
Congratulations Dustin Szczygiel and good luck at the State Level Competition.

Pinckney Community Schools is proud to announce that a team from Pinckney Community High School competed at the CyberPatriot VII National Championship.  Twenty-eight teams in three divisions met in in National Harbor, Maryland on March 13th-15th. Pinckney was one of twelve teams in the Open Division that made it through six practice rounds and five qualification rounds to get to the finals.  Nationwide, two thousand one hundred and seventy five teams competed over the past year.  Less than 1.3% of them made it to the finals. Getting to the National Championship competition is a tremendous achievement.

The students on Pinckneys team were; Austin Eckman, Adam Flickema, Joe Mayo, Torin Meinicke, and their team captain, Jacob Rickerd.  While at the competition, the team was awarded the 3rd place prize from Cisco Systems for their performance in the Switch and Router event in the Presidents Day Open competition.

The CyberPatriot competition was conceived by the non-profit, Air Force Association (AFA) to inspire high school students toward careers in c​ybersecurity or other science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines critical to our nation's future. ​ By participating in CyberPatriot, students are introduced to an exciting and lucrative career path. In addition to learning teamwork and organizational skills that set them apart in the STEM job market, competitors benefit from direct tutelage by industry professionals that volunteer through the CyberPatriot Mentor Program.

Corporate sponsors like Northrop Grumman, Cisco, Facebook and many others have contributed countless hours of their employee’s time and millions of dollars to make this competition possible.

Congratulate these Pirates when you see them!


Good Luck in your next competition!



Congratulations to Pinckney's Unified Basketball team!

Pinckney finished in 1st place and received the Gold Medal (State Champs).


Next year PCHS will begin a new program for all freshmen called the Pirate Academy. This new program is a foundation for students entering the high school, helping them build positive relationships, grow critical skills, and develop into well rounded students. For many years Pinckney has been providing students the opportunity to be involved in two different nationally recognized programs - Freshmen Academy and New Tech High. The new program is taking the best of both programs and mashing them up into an opportunity for students to become P.I.R.A.T.E.s - students who are Problem-solvers, who have Integrity, who are Responsible, who are Achievers, who are Technologically Literate, and Empathetic.

To learn more about the program page through the linked slides or watch the video:


On March 10 Pinckney Schools will be starting the 'Read N' Give/ ReCreate Pinckney' Book Drive! The book drive will go all the way through March to allow ample time for students to bring in books if they would like to donate.

So where will the books go? The hopes in this book drive is to create a library in the soon-to-be ReCreate Pinckney building for the teens to utilize. Choose to Lead students from Pathfinder will be organizing the books for the library, with the hopes of fully stocked shelves. Although this a teen center, we will be collecting all grade level books to accommodate all reading levels.

The standards of the books are as follow:

  • Lightly used and/or new books
  • Paper or hard cover
  • All genres (minus dictionaries, encyclopedia, text books)

On Tuesday, February 24, the members of the Pinckney Community High School Symphony Band and Wind Ensemble performed a Pre-Festival Clinic on the three pieces they have been preparing for the Michigan School Band and Orchestra Association District Festival. Ed Turner, a retired music educator and Marshall Music representative, listened to the performance and offered constructive criticism to help the students prepare for their performances at Festival. This Pre-Festival Clinic was made possible by the Pinckney Community Schools and the Marshall Music Company. The PCHS Symphony Band will perform at 11:40 AM and the PCHS Wind Ensemble will perform at 1:40 PM on Saturday, February 28 at Brighton High School. Family and friends of the music program are invited to attend the performances.