Let It Grow!

The Hickman library staff puts a twist on No Shave November.

Maya Doll, Editor-in-Chief

Apple pie, a Thanksgiving turkey, and a room full of men in beards: the American ideal.

Here at Hickman, male teachers would shave their scruff on November 1 and then let it grow for the rest of the month. Students would vote on which teacher had the best beard throughout the month.

“We do a before and after picture,” Student Government sponsor and history teacher Jeffrey Devero said. “So students donated to the teacher and the winning teacher would get some weird prize package. Sometimes it was like candy and a shave kit. Then [the money that was collected] was donated to Men’s Health Awareness.”

The tradition was started by health teacher Teresa Gooch when she moved to Hickman from Jefferson Junior High after the district rearrange.

“I asked Mr. Devero if he was interested in continuing doing it because I thought maybe high school boys would be able to grow facial hair, and maybe be a little more interested than ninth graders,” Gooch said. “So StuGov took it over and started a fundraiser to try and raise awareness.”

This year, the media center staff decided to put a twist on the month-long event. Not only can female teachers participate, all students are included as well.

“We’re doing our board with pictures and whoever wants to participate can,” Media Specialist Angie Kome said. “Everybody that donates can participate, and then we have little mustaches for people to take pictures with. At the end of the month, anybody who donated would be put into a drawing for a prize.”

That means anything is in play, from beards to legs and even heads.

“The idea is that the money you would usually spend on shaving is what you donate throughout the month,” Kome said. “Mr. Scoville was actually the one who sparked us to get it rolling because he was ready to shave his head.”

AP physics teacher and freshman honors physics teacher Paul Scoville did indeed shave his whole head-and face-at the beginning of November.

“I was already going to shave off my goatee, but then I was thinking there’s been a lot of No Shave November’s about cancer awareness,” Science teacher Paul Scoville said. “In the Hickman family and in the district family there’s a been a lot of people who have been diagnosed with cancer, so I decided to do it as a symbolic gesture.”

Scoville included an extra treat for his students who had an opportunity to witness the big chop.

“I had told my AP class on Halloween that if they could raise a certain amount of money, I didn’t tell them what it was, by the end of the day that they could come in after school and I would cut my hair,” Scoville said. “I also made some comment about how after school if we get to the certain amount, if we have somebody that wants to cut my hair, the highest contributor then could shave my head.”

Really, the money didn’t matter to him, it was all about getting his AP students thinking.
“ If I would have raised a dollar, I would have still cut it off,” Scoville said. “Our Hickman family has been hit pretty hard here recently, both students and faculty, and you know we need to be aware of this.”

While No Shave November here at Hickman traditionally was about cancer awareness, specifically prostate cancer and testicular cancer, it’s really about men’s health in general.

“The Movember Foundation, they try to make it fun and silly, so they can start a conversation about men’s health,” Health teacher Teresa Gooch said. “In the last couple of years, they’ve tried to include men’s mental health as well as physical health because again, that’s something we don’t really spend a lot of time talking about, it’s not very fashionable for guys to say that they need therapy or for guys to say that they’re suffering from depression.”

The Movember Foundation was started in Australia in 2003 by two men, Travis Garone and Luke Slattery, who challenged 30 men to stop shaving for the month of November. No money was raised that year. However as of 2015, the event has spread to 21 different countries, including the United States of course. According to the official Movember website, they have raised the equivalent of $710 million since 2003, which has gone to fund over 1,200 mens health projects.