OC High asks: Is the use of marijuana or other drugs on the increase at your school?

“People no longer try to hide it. Smoking (marijuana) is everywhere . . . .”

Jenny Michel, 16

sophomore, Villa Park

“Most definitely. Going to parties, there has always been alcohol, but recently--in the last two years --marijuana use has gone up. It seems as if kids are starting at an earlier age, which also increases the percentage of kids doing it.”

Catherine Ganiere, 18

senior, Corona del Mar

“Nobody smokes pot like they used to. It’s actually probably on the decrease. Speed is the new trend.”

Joe Villegas, 17

senior, Ocean View

“Yes. Not a dramatic increase, but it seems that lately I hear of more and more people trying it.”


Jennifer Cloak, 17

senior, Calvary Chapel

“I don’t think so, at least on my grade level. But I think there is much more use in the upper grades.”

Eliza Henry, 14

freshman, Canyon

“Yes, the use of marijuana is increasing. . . . It is used out in the open, and there is nobody there to stop the use and the selling of the substance. (Marijuana) is out of control; it is easy to get, it is very cheap, and the sellers are everywhere.”

Christian Lozada, 16

sophomore, Fountain Valley

“Yes, you can walk around and smell the scent. It stays on your clothes.”

Rosie Manning, 18

senior, Trabuco Hills

“Yes, and I’m glad, glad I tell you. Marijuana and other drugs should all be legal. I’m sad that I live in such a restrictive country where people are not free to make their own decisions regarding their own lives. Until people are brave enough to break these laws, we are not truly free. At school, there is a dramatic increase in the use of drugs.”

(Name withheld)

junior, Huntington Beach

“The use of tobacco seems to be on the rise, but I don’t know about marijuana.”

Narcis Brasov, 16

junior, Garden Grove

“Yeah, unfortunately, but kids will be kids.”

Tobi Devito, 17

senior, Mission Viejo

“I believe it’s on the rise. Pot smoking has always been around in high schools, but I think it’s crossed over into the mainstream due to its promotion by popular music groups. At this current time, it has become a marketing device.”

Ben Colet, 18

senior, Troy

“Yes, marijuana and other drugs are on the increase in certain areas--it depends on the group of people.”

Erin Williams, 16

junior, Irvine

“Yes, I think people at our school are using marijuana and other drugs constantly, judging by the way they look and act each day and on the weekends. Students tend to influence each other and tell each other about the so-called ‘good feelings’ of drugs.”


Steve Berkus, 16

junior, Villa Park

“Even if it were, how would anyone be able to tell? When people do drugs they don’t go around saying, ‘Heh, I use drugs.’ They keep it a secret. You can’t tell who uses drugs and who doesn’t. There is no stereotypical drug user.”

Jennie Gadd, 17

junior, Troy

“Yes, I know more people who are starting to use drugs.”

Kelly Suttle, 18

senior, Capistrano Valley

“I am not aware of any use of marijuana or any other drugs on our campus.”

Scott Ingram, 16

sophomore, Fountain Valley

“It is increasing. Probably because students believe that drugs aren’t as bad as they thought they were.”

Don Thomas, 17

senior, Canyon

“I’ve seen a lot more people that I know using drugs than I can recall from my freshman year.”

Esther Yoon, 16

junior, Sunny Hills

“I don’t know, but the subject of drugs always pops up as a concern, so it wouldn’t surprise (me) . . . .”

An Le, 17

junior, Santiago

“I think so.”

Renee Greco, 18

senior, Capistrano Valley

“No, I don’t hang around with potheads.”

James McAlevey, 18

senior, Trabuco Hills

“Yes. It’s not visible, but you know it’s out there. And everywhere.”

Jennifer Fu, 17

senior, Marina

“It’s either happening more, or people are being more public with it.”

Melanie Sheldon, 17

junior, Huntington Beach

“(I think) the use of drugs is rising in our school because I hear more people bragging about using it, though there’s nothing to brag about.”

Krista Scott, 17

senior, Century

“More people I know are using it or have at one time. I know it’s easy to get and not very expensive.”


Angela Rodriguez, 17

junior, Rosary

“Yes, but it is sad to see that these kids have to turn to such a destructive drug in order to get a false sense of comfort and security.”

Lindsey Robyn, 14

freshman, Mission Viejo

“I have no idea, but it doesn’t really bother me because my friends and I don’t do it, and that’s all that really matters.”

Phil Eurs, 15

sophomore, Cypress

“The use of drugs is not on the increase at Los Amigos. I can honestly say our school is well aware of drugs and the effects. They might party on the weekends, but the act of selling or getting drugs on our school campus is not usually an issue to be dealt with. I am not saying no one does drugs (here), but it’s not something I see as being a problem on the increase.”

Meaalii Tagatauli, 16

junior, Los Amigos

“Yes. A lot of people don’t, but it definitely is becoming more popular, especially in the younger grades.”

Ame Amico, 18

senior, Calvary Chapel

“I’ve been to many other schools that had major drug problems. Los Amigos doesn’t seem to have a (noticeable) drug problem. What makes a difference is that if students are caught using drugs or have possession of drugs, he or she will be punished severely.”

Fatima Equza, 15

sophomore, Los Amigos

“According to my sources (students and the like), there has actually been a decrease of marijuana and other drugs at school.”


Paul Main, 17

junior, Huntington Beach

“(I think) more students are using drugs because I’ve seen a couple of them using it. They don’t care if you see them or not. They take it for granted (as) something that would be natural.”

Alma Elizalde, 18

senior, Century

“I would guess that it’s a problem, even though it’s not out in the open a lot. Marijuana is also more practical than other drugs, so most people think that it’s OK to use it.”

Ryan Corbin, 17

senior, Irvine

“Yes, marijuana and other drugs are on the increase. The reason is because as time goes on, society feels that they have the right to interfere in other people’s lives. By interfering and trying to stop the problem, they are only making it worse.”

Kim Heil

senior, Cypress


How do you prepare for a big exam?

Responses gathered by Leeza Duong, Santiago; Kelly Darling, Calvary Chapel; Tricia Michels, Fountain Valley; Presida Brasov, Garden Grove; Luke Fenchel, University; Joslin Gemsch, Capistrano Valley; Cherie Chan, Marina; Michelle Pham, Trabuco Hills; Jennifer Tobkin, Villa Park; Courtney Adams, Corona del Mar; Alison Koodrich, Ocean View; Robert Wenzel, Irvine; Jhoanna Infante, Sunny Hills; Jenny Yee, Canyon; Linda Dao, Los Amigos; Judy Tsai, Huntington Beach; Laurel Gorman, Mission Viejo; Christine Monette, Rosary; Amy Suarez, Troy; Rachel Odom, Century; Tori Clive, Cypress.