Sitting atop a major tectonic fault, Nepal is accustomed to the tremors of the earth. But this time it was overwhelmed by a powerful quake that killed thousands and destroyed some of the country’s most treasured temples. Past and present were destroyed all at once, making digging out and rebuilding that much more daunting.

On the afternoon of April 25, 2015, the streets of Katmandu were filled with people carrying bedrolls and pillows to any open space they could find, including a military parade ground that has been transformed into a giant tent city. Few people seemed willing to sleep inside, fearful that the next shock might flatten the few homes that remained.

Global events and world issues have always been at the forefront of our Academy’s International Baccalaureate (IB) Visual Art Program.  Our talented Academy artists used this tragic event to bring public awareness to the news coming out of Katmandu. After the class viewed these images, they were challenged to write a poem that communicated the feeling that were racing through their heads and hearts. Their final challenge was to create a poster that could be used by world relief agencies to bring aid and public awareness to this heart wrenching event.

On Mount Everest, helicopter rescue operations began Sunday morning to take wounded climbers off the mountain, where at least 18 climbers were killed and 41 others injured; at least three Americans were among the dead.

At the Academy, each IB Art project is capped off by a group critique aimed at the students developing a critical eye, a critical voice along with an understanding into the creative process. For some of our departing Seniors, this would be their final art critique of their Harrisburg Academy journey. For all of them, it was their finest hour, as an Academy visual artist.

I am so proud to be their teacher.