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  • The charming exterior of Butter and Fold attracts many customers at all hours of business. From the elegant teal and gold color scheme to the waft of freshly baked breads, it’s impossible to simply pass by without taking a peek inside.


    Butter and Fold: The perfect place to satisfy your pastry cravings this fall

  • At the Olivas Links Golf Course, on Sept. 21, 2023, the Foothill Technology High School (Foothill Tech) girls golf team faced off in a league match against Bishop Diego. The Dragons played well and won the match with an overall score of 249-303. Pictured above, Maddie Wicks 26 concentrates as she putts her ball toward the pin, finishing hole five with three over par.


    Recap: Girls’ golf takes Bishop Diego 249-303

  • On Sept. 22, 2023, Foothill Technology High School (Foothill Tech) competed in their first Tri-County Athletic (TCAA) league meet. Foothill Tech races with five girls on varsity, including Danika Swanson-Rico 25, Bennett Rodman 26, Kalea Eggertsen 26, Emma Anderson 26 and Isabella Efner 25. They warm-up on the start line, exchanging words of encouragement and waiting for the queue to begin the race.

    Cross Country

    Cross country starts off strong at first league meet of the 2023 season

  • With beloved melodies and nostalgic anthems dating back over a decade, fans and general audience members alike enjoy singing along to her award-winning album, Fearless, from 2008.


    The Eras Tour: an adventure spanning 17 years of music 

  • On Sept. 21, 2023, Foothill Technology High School (Foothill Tech) boys water polo hosted a home game against their opponent Malibu High School (Malibu). With lots of splashing, Ethan Ortiz 24 attempts to find an open teammate to give Foothill Tech an advantage to win their league match.

    Boys' Water Polo

    Recap: Boys’ water polo bested by Malibu

  • Students of Foothill Tech try to make button pins of their own design at Back to School Night. This college and career class provides an opportunity to learn life skills and creativity.


    Foothill Tech welcomes parents and guardians at Back to School Night 2023

  • In the teen show “The Summer I Turned Pretty,” an adaption of the popular Young Adult novel, protagonist Belly Conklin navigates her love life in a triangle between brothers Jeremiah and Conrad Fisher.


    “The Summer I Turned Pretty”: In Defense of the Fisher Boys

  • During F.I.R.E and lunch, members of the Associated Student Body worked hard to prepare an assembly line of delicious In-N-Out for the Class of 2024.


    Class of 2024 connects through In-N-Out Burger and festivities

  • On the sunny afternoon of Sept. 19, 2023 girls tennis played against the Villanova Preparatory (Villanova) School Wildcats. The tennis team huddles together and chants in a pregame ritual before beginning their matches.

    Girls' Tennis

    Girls’ tennis triumphs over Villanova in first league match

  • The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is the much anticipated sequel to the critically acclaimed and beloved video game The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Announced in 2019 by Nintendo at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, Tears of the Kingdom was released on May 12, 2023 after nearly four years of waiting. Since its release, the game has been met with widespread acclaim from critics and fans alike. The game directly follows the events of its predecessor, building upon them and expanding an already immense world. Writer Kelly Quinn shares his thoughts.


    “The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom” is victory for gaming

  • The three cakes that were reviewed were Lemon, Pumpkin Spice and Red Velvet all topped with a generous amount of cream cheese frosting.


    A dive into Nothing Bundt Cakes: America’s largest specialty cake company

  • Comprising of 12 songs, Olivia Rodrigos new album GUTS is her second studio album and was released on Sept. 8, 2023. Rodrigos first studio album, SOUR, released in 2021, was critically acclaimed and beloved by fans, making her second album long anticipated. Writer Isheeta Pal takes on the task of listening to GUTS and reviewing it, delving into its key themes and messaging.


    Album Anatomy: “GUTS”

  • A sign displayed in the store highlights the unique vendors in the store as well as promoting shopping from local artists.


    Hey! Friends shows Ventura why shopping locally matters

  • Christopher Nolan hits it out of the park once again with his brilliantly done biopic about the man who invented the atom bomb, Oppenheimer.


    “Oppenheimer” is a mind-blowingly impactful film

  • In Laufey’s latest album “Bewitched,” released on Sept. 8, 2023, she brings a jazzy and soothing take on the journey of love. Following the success of her previous album, “Everything I Know About Love,” her sophomore album comprises 14 songs, each bringing their own unique spin that is sure to bewitch the listener. Join writer Lily Toreja as she reviews each song and delves into their individual meanings.


    Album Anatomy: “Bewitched” by Laufey

  • On the eventful evening of Sept. 14, 2023, the Foothill Technology High School (Foothill Tech) Dragons faced off against Cate in their third league match. The matchup was very even and came down to the fifth and final set in which the Dragons were unable to secure the win. After bouncing and hitting the ball to set her rhythm, Malia Gray ‘24 (number 9) goes to serve, as her teammates and her alike hope for the best.

    Girls' Volleyball

    Girls’ volleyball endures a hard loss against Cate

  • Jackson Basurto ‘24 and Alfred “Mason” Borkowski ‘24 are in full recruitment mode as students pass by their table. The club offered a fun way to engage with other students while doing something they all enjoy.


    Dragons find their connection at Club Rush 2023

  • On the afternoon of Sept. 14, 2023, the Foothill Technology High School (Foothill Tech) girls golf faced off against La Reina at the Olivas Links Golf Course. Maddie Wicks ‘26 tees it up with hopes of sticking it close to pin and hopefully having a birdie opportunity. Wicks finished hole six with a double bogey and finished the entire course with a 56.

    Girls' Golf

    Foothill Tech defeats La Reina in league match

  • Isabella De La Rosa 24 (number 3) and Charlis Swezy 27 (number 1) block from the net, while Malia Gray 24 (number 9) and Morgan Houston 25 (number 2) stay behind to cover any unexpected plays from the other team.

    Girls' Volleyball

    Girls’ volleyball spiked on by St. Bonaventure

  • Students hit the ground running as the 2023-2024 school year picks up its pace. With this years You Belong Week taking place Sept. 11-15, 2023, as well as Club Rush on Sept. 15, 2023, Dragons are busy keeping up with all the events.


    FDP-TV: Season 2, Episode 2

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Mika Anderson: “If Earth had a heart beat, it’d be in Africa”

Credit: Jason Messner / The Foothill Dragon Press


For Foothill students, life science teacher Mika Anderson is someone they can ask about life on a scientific level. Whether it be mitosis, the Calvin cycle, pluripotent stem cells or the principle of complementarity, Anderson undoubtedly has a surplus of knowledge when it comes to life sciences like biology and physiology. However, what she has learned in through her own life experience is just as valuable.

In the classroom, she uses dissections and lab practicals to broadens students’ minds to see the world in a different way. Outside of the classroom, she continues the habit, using travel as a means to broaden her own world view.

You may have seen her travel wall, home to dozens of photos taken in dozens of countries, memories of the places she’s been. She wears a smile in nearly all of them. Today, traveling is one of her favorite hobbies, but her start as a world traveler was not as luxurious as it may sound.



Anderson spent all of her elementary years in Japan before eventually coming to the United States through Connecticut, and working her way out to San Diego. By the time she entered middle school, she had already checked three countries and two continents off the figurative list.

After going through struggles like fleeing Vietnam, getting a divorce, living in a convent and immigrating to America, Anderson knew that her mom would prefer her to stay close to home, after all she was a “typical, overprotective, Asian parent,” as Anderson joked.

But, she knew she wanted to go someplace new, recognising that “it was in part because I was being rebellious and didn’t want to do what my mom wanted me to do but it was also in part because I was ready.”

It’s a choice she stands by because, in retrospect “going to college was one of the largest growth periods of my life,” she said. “It blew my world.”

UCSB was also a bit saddening at times because she beared the burden of paying for college on her own, with help only from the financial aid office. So, when she saw people going to incredible places to study abroad, she was “really bummed.”

“Then I met my husband,” she said, “he wanted to explore and travel and I was ready to explore and travel.” So, they started with a backpacking trip around Europe. From there, she “got bit by the bug” and has been traveling ever since.

She has trouble choosing a favorite trip, but recalls her biggest trip: a journey around the world with her husband which lasted a full year in 2006. For that one, she said, “all the stars were aligned.”

She and her husband had just bought a house and applied for a sabbatical almost jokingly, never expecting to get accepted. They decided that they would only go if they were both accepted.

“Next thing I know, we get this notice from the board,” she remembered. They were both accepted.

From there, they dealt with selling a house and most of their possessions, all but what could fit into a small storage unit, and then they went.



She deems New Zealand the most beautiful place she’s visited because “it’s a postcard,” though Hawai’i is among her favorite destinations as she was married there and visits often, but she seemed to light up the most when she talked about Africa.

“Everything about Africa is so different,” she shared. “There’s so much history there as well as a variety of things that you can study and learn. Things that are exciting, like going on safari, and things that are heartbreaking, like driving in a van in Tanzania and there’s a dead baby on the street, and no one cares.”

She likes to tell her friends and family that “if Earth had a heartbeat, it’d be in Africa.”

Now that she has kids, she tends to travel to places that are on the safer side, like Bali, her first big trip with kids.

They also recently spent two months on a trip to Nicaragua and Costa Rica. She was happy to take her children there to broaden their worldview, as well. Nicaragua exposed Emma and Beau to “real poverty” for the first time, and also showed them that “there are whole cultures that speak Spanish,” it’s not just a “secret language between our family,” as they had previously thought.

Outside of traveling, Anderson considers herself “not an artistic person,” but she does participate in what we might call “the arts.” She plays piano, as well as guitar. She recalls how she and her husband would sit in their living room and play guitar and sing, and how “before we started traveling that’s basically how we bonded,” she said.

The arts that she does participate in are what she called “very science oriented, musical, it’s mathematical.”

Anderson loves to sew, quilt, and build. She’s even pondered the idea of taking carpentry classes in retirement. She’s already got a pretty good foundation, saying “I can pretty much put together, any piece of furniture you want.”

But her “best hobby” is dancing. Growing up, her mother used any spare money she had to put Anderson in ballet lessons. Anderson remembers how eventually her rebellious side got the best of her and she went out for a gymnastics team, unbenounced to her mom.



With help from her friends and teachers, she practiced gymnastics all through middle school. Her mom only found out when Anderson got hurt and had to explain the injury. She continued gymnastics through high school, and took it with her later in life.

She and her husband used to go on dates to Nicholby’s to dance.

“I would pick up the steps pretty quickly so I would just dance and at the time when I was dancing people were noticing,” she remembered. People like the Flyin’ Lindy Hoppers, who invited Anderson to try out for their dance troupe.

She made the cut, and danced with them for three years, all while teaching at Anacapa Middle School. One of her favorite parts of being on the team was getting to travel- no surprise there.

She would go perform all over, from Georgia to San Francisco to Seattle, at corporate events, nursing homes, and even the Disney Millennium 2000 show.

In all that she’s learned in her travels and experiences, Anderson has one message that she wants to convey to students: “to be brave and to not pass up opportunities because those opportunities may never come again.”

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