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JUNE 2005 / end of year (VOL. 11, NO. 9)





est. 1893 • K-12 college prep




Two Ceremonies Promote Students to New Campus

Congratulations Class of 2005 ......... 14 & 15

Art exhibits showcase outstanding student talent ...... 9 Grandparents’ Day a heartwarming tradition ............. 13 First place in National Science Bowl ....................... 19


New albums posted online of May events such as: ■ 2005 Graduation ■ LS Dance Concert ■ MS Honk! Performance ■ Kindergarten Show ■ US Senior Showcase ■ LS Grandparents’ Day



Gr. 5 and 6 students ended the school year – and their Bucknall careers – with two days of special festivities and two wonderful promotion ceremonies held Tues., June 7 to promote them into the middle school. Gr. 6 students enjoyed an afternoon of signing yearbooks, swimming, Music Jeopardy and free dance, then were promoted from elementary to middle school at the conclusion of their second semester and annual awards presentation. With the MS

expanding to include Gr. 6 next year on the new Blackford campus, Gr. 5 also held its first-ever promotion ceremony. Students had a fantastic end-of-the-year party the day before, featuring snow cones, a tug-of-war and a dunk tank, and the next day, prior to their promotion, enjoyed a talent show and spelling bee. “It was my honor to promote the 5th and 6th graders to the middle school. We are all very proud of these fine students,” said outgoing Elementary Division Head Christina

Vail, who is moving from the area at the end of the school year (see Staff Updates on Page 7). Elementary social studies teacher Kristin Giammona, who will assume Vail’s position next year, was moved while watching many of her Gr. 5 students during the promotion service. “The ceremony touched my heart a great deal, since I taught many of the children for two years in a row,” said Giammona. “This class will surely do well in middle school.” Vail added, “Each of our students leaves the elementary school with a strong academic foundation, great spirit and enthusiasm, and, most importantly, outstanding character traits that have been practiced and honed in preparation for the exciting years ahead. We wish them all the best and look forward to seeing their achievements in the future.” We also salute our incoming Gr. 8 students who will move to Blackford from the Saratoga campus, and assume their important role as leaders of the new middle school. Congratulations to our inaugural MS student body for our new campus!

DI Teams Qualify for Nationals, Capture Media Attention

Harker News — June 05

broadcast (see clip on Harker Web site). The San Jose Mercury News also ran an article on Harker’s teams in the May 12 edition (Guide), and India West, a weekly English-language newspaper, published an article on the DI students in their May 13 edition. Both teams performed marvelously at the Global Finals, with the “Top Quarks” team – Urvi Gupta, Anisha Padwekar, Darian Edvalson, Andrew Zhu, Katherine Paseman, Michael Kling and Ali Abdollahi

Two teams of Gr. 3 students competed in the Destination Imagination (DI) Global Finals in Tennessee, May 25-28. As reported in the April HN, teams who placed high enough in the regional event were invited to the national tournament to show off their cultural performances, and what structural improvements they had made on their already impressive bridge designs. Their designs, and the fact that Harker was the only Bay Area lower school with two teams invited to the Globals, caught the attention of local media, as well. Lyanne Melendez of KGO-Channel 7, who was clearly charmed by the students’ comments and enthusiasm, interviewed the teams on the LS campus May 2, and aired a special feature on Harker’s Destination Imagination teams on that night’s 6 p.m.

Ashwin Chalaka – placing in the top three of the Elementary Level of their chosen “DIsigning Bridges” competition. The “Creative Imaginers” team – Rahul Sridhar, Dhavani Raghupathy, Nihal Uppugunduri, Vikas Bhetanabholta, Nikhil Dilip and Saachi Jain – ranked 22nd at the Global Finals, also in the “DIsigning Bridges” contest. Congratulations to both teams for their exceptional performances in the global competition. We salute all of the students and parents involved in DI for their spirited and outstanding efforts throughout this competition!


editor’s note We humbly dedicate this endof-the-year issue, and tribute supplement, to Howard and Diana Nichols. In our office we’d have little to write, edit, report, pitch, post, photograph, archive and publish if it weren’t for their visionary efforts. They have shaped Harker into a legendary institution and an outstanding community of faculty, students, administrators and staff. We’ve been honored to be part of it. Harker Office of Communications Pam, Christine, Crystal, Mark, Jaja, Nick, Ali and Cathy

volunteer New Volunteer Opportunity for 200506 – Harker Hearts This is a newly instituted parent volunteer-fueled effort to lend a helping hand when a Harker family faces a crisis (e.g., death, serious illness, absent parent) with the goal to provide key assistance that reduces the strain. Depending on the need, assistance may include: ■ Preparation and delivery of meals ■ Transporting children to and from school ■ Miscellaneous errands ■ Child supervision/playdates ■ Hospital visits Volunteers do not provide financial support, counseling or other expert related services. Services may be requested by the family in crisis, or by a friend of the school on their behalf, and standardized procedures will be followed to protect confidentiality. We seek volunteer coordinators to represent the school divisions (K-3, 4-5, 6-8 and 9-12) for the new academic year. For information about Harker Hearts, please contact


save the dates!


Used Book Exchanges

Our monthly Tribute to the Nichols articles this year were researched and written by Archivist Sue Smith and Alumni Director Terry Walsh. Our thanks to them for their tireless research and delightful finds!

■ Sat., July 9, 9 a.m. - Noon, Shah Hall Field ■ Sat., Aug. 6, 9 a.m. - Noon, Shah Hall Field

Fall 2005 Reminders - Annual Events ■ Homecoming Game Fri., Oct. 7, Foothill College, Los Altos Hills 6 p.m. Pre-game festivities (you won’t want to miss ’em!)

■ Polar Picnic Sun, Oct. 16, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., STG Campus Fun for the entire Harker community!

7 p.m. Game Cheer on the Eagles and show your Harker Pride! ■ US Homecoming Dance Sat., Oct. 8, 8:30 p.m., US Gym Check the fall edition for more details, but mark your calendars now!

The final Tribute to the Nichols installment is in the form of a 12-page supplement to this month’s edition that recaps the key events held this year to honor them and includes some of the wonderful online tributes we received over the year. Enjoy!

New Middle School Campus – Countdown! Watch the Web site and the fall edition for updates and news!

Online Photo Albums - Last Chance to Order! We are now keeping our online photo albums posted through the summer since we’ve found that many families have a chance to catch up on the viewing and ordering once school is out. We have over 40 albums online, which include photos from events and all photos published in The Harker News. Go to the Parent Home Page and click on Media Galleries for the list of albums, passwords and links to each. Enjoy!

Web Site Redesign Over the summer we’ll be implementing some Web site changes to improve ease of use, and organize information better for parents and the general public. As always, we continually evaluate and adapt our communication efforts to best suit the needs of our families. Watch for more improvements in the months ahead, and feel free to share any suggestions with us over the summer at Thanks!

Watch Your Mailbox! ■ LS and MS Sports Mailing - There will be some new and exciting changes and additions to the LS and MS sports program in 2005-06. Parents will be receiving an Athletics Handbook and flyer noting the changes – watch for the mailing in late June!

Excitement builds over the opening of the new MS campus this fall, and many departments are preparing for much work in a short amount of time to ready the campus for the school year. We will keep the Harker community informed of our progress on the Web site, and we ask that you resist the urge to drop by during the day to see how things are going. Much of the area will be “hard hat only,” and the rest will be in a state of intense set-up and organization. Visitors will hamper our hard-working employees from accomplishing the monumental task of preparing the campus for the start of school, so we truly appreciate your cooperation. Beginning the week of Aug. 15 the office should be up and running, but the campus will still have very limited access. Please call the MS office at 248.2510 before coming by. Just a reminder on two key start-of-school dates: ■ Mon., Sept. 6 - MS Orientation (Gr. 6-8)

■ Start of Year Mailing - The annual packet of important forms and school year information will be mailed the end of June. Please review promptly and return needed forms by noted deadlines to ensure your student’s informations is ready for the start of school!

■ Tues., Sept. 7 - MS classes begin

Summer Reading Lists

—Cindy Kerr, MS Division Head

All K–11 Harker students recently received a printed copy of the summer reading lists, as well as the guidelines for earning a reading pin (for Gr. K–7). These lists are also available online on the Parent Home Page, the library site and – for the US students – on the HHMS. Students are required to read the books described on their grade’s lists. Gr. K–7 can earn a pin by reading additional titles as described in the guidelines.

Again, thanks for your understanding and cooperation, and check the Web site for updates.

Check the Web site over the summer for all school updates and announcements! Harker News — June 05



Harker Teacher Named Fulbright Scholar, Whole Family Heads to Chile

The Colegio San Ignacio de la Ssalle (the odd spelling is because of another school with a similar name) is a K-12 private school in Quillota, Chile, about two hours north of Santiago and 45 minutes inland from Viña del Mar. A true exchange, Moss will be teaching Arcaya’s upper school English classes and will live in an apartment that Arcaya is helping to find for Moss and her family. Arcaya will teach Moss’s Spanish classes and will advise her advisor group as well, and live in Harker housing behind the campus. “I told my advisees they might be advising him a little bit!” laughed Moss. The two teachers have met only by e-mail so far, but they will have an orientation together in Chile before

Arcaya comes to the U.S. The school year in Chile runs from March through December, so Moss will be arriving during their winter break, in July. She’ll have summer vacation off in December and January, and dreams of visiting Chile’s lake region and Macchu Piccu in Peru.

“Teaching abroad has been a goal of mine since college,” says Moss. She applied for the Fulbright by submitting recommendations, an application, and having an interview. She requested Chile, and Fulbright matched her up with Arcaya, their top Chilean candidate. Moss has high hopes that this exchange will be the beginning of a long relationship between Harker and San Ignacio, and is especially excited about her own kids having this international experience.

Diana Moss

US Spanish teacher Diana Moss has been awarded a prestigious Fulbright Scholarship to teach for one year in a school in Chile in an exchange that will also bring Chilean teacher Luis Arcaya to Harker next fall.

The Mosses, pictured with the Jerneys, show off their readiness for Chile!

Arcaya will be accompanied by his wife, Junia.

Moss’s husband, Brian, and her two children, Kendra (Harker Gr. 7) and Kevin (Harker Gr. 3) are all excited about a year abroad. Kevin, a little less enthused about leaving his friends, is planning on writing home often and playing lots of soccer. Kendra is looking forward to being the “blond mystery girl,” and hopes there’s a girls soccer team. If there isn’t, Brian has vowed to start one! Harker parent Helena Jerney (Cristina, Gr. 4; John, Gr. 1) travels home to Chile every other summer, and has been a great resource to the Moss family, preparing them for Chilean culture. Simple things here pose a challenge for a year abroad. Moss laughed that she had to be sure to find an orthodontist in Santiago to take care of Kendra’s braces! Best of luck, Señora Moss! —Cathy Snider, HN asst. editor (and US music teacher) Note: Watch the fall issue for an interview with Luis Arcaya.

Math Teacher Awarded $5,000 for Innovative Energy Project US math teacher Evan Barth was recently selected as a winner in British Petroleum’s “A+ for Energy” program, which includes a $5,000 grant for Barth’s project entitled, “Solar Hot Water System and Photovoltaics.” Only 163 of the 900+ entries received awards, and Barth will join the other winners at the Globe Theatre in Los Angeles for an awards luncheon in July. The grant enables students enrolled in Barth’s Gr.12 Introduction

Service Pins Awarded Many loyal Harker employees received their service pins at the annual end-of-year party on June 9. Thanks to the following for their many years of dedication: 40 years: Howard Nichols 20 years: Ruth Tebo 15 years: Pam Gelineau, Andrew Hansen, Gail Palmer, Theresa Smith 10 years: Pete Anderson, Bill Bost, Harker News — June 05

to Engineering elective to research, design and build a solar water heating system and teach the benefits of such a system to LS and MS students. “By completing this project, the students will have an incredible experience in designing and building a tangible engineering system, complete with the frustrations and joys of teamwork and leadership,” said Barth. The class will begin the project in August, in order to present the completed water system to the younger students prior to displaying Darrin Cassidy, Diann Chung, Kathy Clark, Laura Lang-Ree, Francisco Parra 5 years: Nina Anand, Evan Barth, Philip Becker, Judi Beil, Bob Benge, Michael Bourquin, Jeremiah Brewer, Jada Dessaure, Jeffrey Draper, Danny Dunn, Mariko Finn, Antoinette Gathy, Jerusha Hew Len, Christine Howkins, Dan Hughes, Kristin Janiak, Jesse Lara, Ben Lee, Marissa Ortiz, Joanne Mason, Margaret McGovern,

it at Harker’s annual Family Picnic in October. “The overall goal of this project is to educate the students about energy and to show them that it does not require a large project to make an impact on one’s own energy consumption.” Barth hopes that this cross-divisional project will help bring Harker students closer together. “The school has grown now across three campuses,” said Barth. “By creating this connection through this project, students in the lower grades will have a personal attachment to the seniors.” Barth added, “Ideally, these younger students will be motivated to start an energy Gerry Pickett, Bradley Stoll, Jeff Sutton, Tomas Thompson, Fred Triefenbach, Joey Tyndal, Felicia Wiltz, Kevin Williamson and Brian Wimsett.

Teacher’s Poetry Published Internationally US English teacher Alexandra Mattraw, who is working currently on her MFA, has recently been notified that her poetry has been accepted

project of their own. This project will be a success if the students are conscious of energy, the ways to maximize the energy available and the ways to harness energy in a sustainable project.” In addition to the grant, Barth’s award includes sponsorship to a National Energy Education Development (NEED) Conference for educators this summer, a NEED Science of Energy Kit and a set of classroom materials. NEED provides energy education training and curriculum to K – 12 teachers and students throughout the nation. Congratulations to Barth for his award and this innovative project! for publication in this fall’s edition of the Seneca Review. This prestigious international magazine emphasizes poetry and, as their Web site states, “consistently publishes emerging writers and is always open to new, innovative work,” as well as focusing on translations of international writers. More information about the magazine can be found at More staff updates on p. 7



fund Annual Giving News


Your Generous Annual Giving Dollars at Work! In this issue we are proud to showcase the following student programs and services, made possible in part by your continued support through charitable giving. Thank you for your giving! ■ Fine arts program and shows, p. 9 ■ Student literary publications, p. 16, 23 ■ Student performances, p. 7, 11, 13, 17 ■ Senior Showcase, p. 20 ■ US speech and debate program, p. 23 ■ Spirit activities, p. 18, 26 ■ Grandparents’ Day, p. 13

Watch for Harker’s Annual Report in August, which will acknowledge our generous 2004-05 Harker Fund donors, and feature photos, testimonials and information about all the programs supported by charitable contributions. See the LS section for a list of new members in our Grandparents’ Association. —Bran-Dee Torres, Director of Annual Giving

The 2005-06 Fashion Show Journey Has Begun! We invite you to come along for the ride of a lifetime and help to create the “Cruisin’ California” fashion show - the meeting schedule for the summer is noted below. We have volunteer opportunities available in several areas. No prior fashion show or volunteer experience is required. Our committees are a blend of volunteers from the past shows who helped lead the way. We have areas for every interest and time schedule. Bring a friend or come solo – but come to find out what the buzz is all about for this year’s show! Remember, the net profit from the show directly benefits our children by providing for the Scholarship Fund, continued training for the faculty and the Science and Technology Center. Please join us on this amazing journey. Call or e-mail Jennifer Helmonds at 408.345.0107 or with any questions or areas of volunteer interest. Fashion Show Meetings Faculty Dining Room (FDR), Manzanita Hall, US campus July 13, 6:30-8:30 p.m. August 10, 6:30-8:30 p.m.

Picnic in Paradise Wraps Up with Parties

to date 100% 90% 80% 70% 60%

■ Picnic Overnight On the evening of Apr. 29 a handful of LS students lined the gym floor with sleeping bags, air mattresses and blankets as they took part in the Lower School Overnight, a popular auction item each year at the annual picnic. With an appetite for games, skits, and s’mores, the students tried their best to stay up until the early morning hours by playing games, snacking and watching movies, but most were asleep earlier than they would have liked. That didn’t stop them from having a great time with their friends and a few of their favorite coaches!

■ Raffle Sellers Treated to Bowling Each MS student who sold 100 or more raffle tickets for the annual Harker Family and Alumni Picnic was invited, along with a Harker guest, to participate in an afternoon of bowling fun at Oakridge Lanes on May 3. Thirty Harker students and three chaperones attended the event, where participants bowled multiple games, played billiards and video games and enjoyed treats from the snack bar. Many thanks to these students for supporting Harker with your outstanding raffle ticket sales!

Freeze the Date: Polar Picnic, Sun., Oct. 16

Volunteer Appreciation

50% 40% 30% 20% 10%

These are the wonderful parent volunteers who helped out with school events after the May Volunteer Thanks edition was published, and we’re so grateful for all of their spectacular help! Library, Book Fair and Summer Reading Helpers Christine Apap-Bologna, Sarah Auvil, Maitree Banerjee, Sheryl Boone, Zaklina Bujari-Gutierrez, Christine Camara, Fred and Candy Carr, Faustina Chen, Kelly Delepine, Leena Donde, Grace Edvalson, Sunita Gupta, Deepa Iyengar, Sandy Johnson, Shanthi Kannan, Qunyan Mao, Roopal Mayor, Krishnaveni Meka, Leslie Nielsen, Chidori Okubo, Sheila Pan, Kim Pellissier, Elizabeth Powers, Sue Prutton, Eileen Richardson, Jane Sowards, Ram Swaminathan, Arun Subramani, Joyce Sum, Shankari Sundar, Judy West, Jane Villadsen, Nina Yeats, Narayana Yellapragada and Nazi Zahiri Kiddie Carnival Michelle Anderson, Christine Cumpston, Krishnaveni Meka, Kim Pellissier, Jeannette Perez, Radhika Reddy, Ram Swaminathan, Shankari Sundar and Trish Tobin Grandparents’ Day Zaineb Asaf, and with special thanks for their artistic genius and creative engineering skills, Melody Moyer and Alice Schwartz.

$1,000,000 4

Parent Liaison to Common Ground Speaker Series Vidya Lakshmi-Chari Harker News — June 05

President’s Circle Dinner

Class of 2005 Moms Honored

The President’s Circle Dinner is held annually to thank those Harker families and community members who donate $2,500 or more to our Annual Giving campaign in support of student programs and services. This year, in honor of Howard and Diana’s retirement, Ashok Krishnamurthi and Deepa Iyengar (Sidhart, Gr. 2, and Gautam, Gr. 6) graciously hosted the evening at their exquisite home. Nearly 200 guests were treated to an exceptional musical performance by Harker’s talented US performing arts group Downbeat, directed by Laura Lang-Ree and Catherine Snider. Howard and Diana thanked all families for providing our Harker students with vast opportunities and resources to achieve the very best, and the evening ended with special remarks by Board of Trustees Chair Lon Allen. It was an unforgettable evening and we send our sincerest thanks to the many hands that helped make this a memorable occasion. Photos online.

US moms from Gr. 9-11 organized the 3rd annual Senior Moms’ Tribute Lunch on May 17 to honor the mothers of this year’s graduating class. Forty-four senior moms attended the potluck event, enjoying an ethnically diverse selection of hors d’oeuvres, salads, entrees and desserts provided by the 30 underclass grade level moms. Each senior mom was also presented a bud vase filled with fresh roses. The volunteer co-chairs for this year’s luncheon were Kathy Polzin and Carol Underwood, assisted by Cherrie Blair, Kim Bush and Sandy Berglund on the day of the event. Community Relations Director Nancy Reiley said, “If the success of any Harker parent event can be measured by how long our guests stay to enjoy each other’s company and good conversation, Harker moms ‘owned’ the Edge patio well into the afternoon and long after the last crumb of chocolate cake had been cleared away!”

foreign The Harker chapter of the Modern and Classical Languages Society held their third annual induction ceremony on April 28. The 81 returning members were joined by 64 new inductees into Harker’s French National Honor Society (13 students), Japanese National Honor Society (13 students), Latin National Honor Society (8 students) and Spanish National Honor Society (30 students). Congratulations to all of the new inductees! This has been a great year for our foreign language department, and we’re proud to share the latest news and the results of various end-of-the-year language tests. ■ National Spanish Exam Harker US students shined again this year on the National Spanish Exam. The students whose scores ranked regionally or nationally were: Spanish 1 – Anees Goel, Gr. 9, 2nd place regionally, 5th place nationally; Spanish 2 – Nina Duong, Gr. 9, 1st place regionally, 5th place nationally; Lucille Hu, Gr. Harker News — June 05

language 10, 2nd place regionally, 8th place nationally; Spanish 3 – Robyn Chan and Tonia Sun, both Gr. 9, tied for 1st place regionally and 3rd place nationally; Alix Briggs, Kevin Pan and Natalie So, all Gr. 9, tied for 2nd place regionally and 6th place nationally; Palash Agarwal, Stephanie Benedict, and Alex Fandrianto, all Gr. 9, and Urvashe Sameer, Gr. 11, all tied for 3rd place regionally and 7th place nationally; Spanish 4 – Aseem Shukla, Gr. 10, 1st place regionally, 3rd place nationally; Natasha Sarin, Gr. 10, 2nd place regionally, 6th place nationally; Greg Finkelstein, Gr. 12, 3rd place regionally, 7th place nationally; Spanish 5 – Kathy Peng, Gr. 12, 1st place regionally, 4th place nationally; Jaya Iyer, Gr. 11, 3rd place regionally, 9th place nationally. US Spanish teachers Paul Pickering, Susana Hartzell,

Diana Moss and Abel Olivas (dept. chair) did a wonderful job preparing the students for the exam – and all year. Congratulations to the students and faculty for their outstanding performances! ■ National French Contest Harker’s French students joined 103,614 students nationwide in the national French exams recently, and the following students were among the top scorers in each level exam, with the students’ national ranking included in parentheses: Level 1 – Lenka Pelakova, Gr. 12 and Gwyneth Vernon, Gr. 9 (1); Ruehanee Killer, Gr. 9 (3); Jenny Kwon, Gr. 9 (4); Paul Lee, Gr. 9 (5); Shoshana Batson, Gr. 9 (7); Sasha Desai, Gr. 9 (8). Level 2: Charisma Kaushik, Gr. 9 (4); Juliana Daniil, Gr. 10 and Avinash Mandava, Gr. 10 (5); Roger Kim, Gr. 10 and Andrea Kablanian, Gr. 9 (8); Serafine Chen, Gr. 10,

Ashutosh Sheth, Gr. 10, Diane Wang, Gr. 9 and Ben Englert, Gr. 9 (10). Level 3 – Anjana Dasu, Gr. 11 and Siddarth Satish, Gr. 11 (1); Connie Tung, Gr. 10 and Alex Zorian, Gr. 10 (2); Kriti Lodha, Gr. 9, Esther Teplitsky, Gr. 10 and Nina Vyedin, Gr. 10 (3); Vani Pyda, Gr. 10 (4); Andrew Tran, Gr. 10 (5); Sasha Stepanenko, Gr. 11 (6); Karena Chan, Gr. 11, Jessie Li, Gr. 10, Varun Ram, Gr. 11 and Cooper Sivara, Gr. 10 (7); Tiffany Dai, Gr. 10, Jason Lee, Gr. 9 (8); Aeshna Raman, Gr. 11 and Ashley Yang, Gr. 10 (9); Akshay Bhatia, Gr. 10, Jonathan Chang, Gr. 10, Cheryl Chiu, Gr. 11 and Saloni Mathur, Gr. 11 (10). Level 4 – Yi Sun, Gr. 11 (4); Ariana Veraga, Gr. 12 (8); Janine Carpenter, Gr. 12 and Erika Gudmundson, Gr. 12 (9); Siddarth Chandrasekhar, Gr. 10 (10); Level Cont. on p. 6


foreign Cont from p. 5 5 – Rachel Newman, Gr. 12 (5); Hermanjit Bajwa, Gr. 11 (7); Irine Tyutereva, Gr. 11 (8); Liat Noten, Gr. 12 and Rohini Venkatraman, Gr. 11 (9); Maria Bush, Gr. 11 (10). Congratulations to the US French teachers, Nicholas Manjoine, Françoise Thompson and Antoinette Gathy, who were instrumental in the success of the program this year, and kudos to all of our French students! ■ Japanese Language Test Thirty-six Harker Japanese language students recently took the Japanese Language Proficiency Test, the only proficiency test offered for students of the Japanese language in as many as 36 countries. It has four levels with Level 1 being the most difficult. “It’s noteworthy that we had six students receive Level 3 certificates,” said Japanese teacher Yukiko Konishi. Congratulations to the following students receiving high scores on the Level 3 test (which covers two years of college material) or the Level 4 test (which covers one year of college material): Level 3 – sophomore Nicholas Tan; juniors Amy Huang,

language Hailey Lam and Ira Patniak; seniors Mason Liang, Nina Zheng. Level 4 – sophomores Alice Chang, Robert Cheng, Kunal Gupte, Grayson Hurd, Rahul Komati, Gloria Kwan, Jessica Lee, Tiffany Juliana Lin, Tiffany June Lin, Molly Newman, Patrick Sweeney, Jennifer Whang; juniors Shruthi Bhuma, Swathi Bhuma, Jason Han, Wilson Haung, Catherine Ho, Christine Hsueh, Robert Li, Eric Tzeng, Timothy Wan, David Woolsey, Christine Yeh, Alyssa Zachariah; seniors Amy Kyi, Paloma Solorio. Many thanks to the US Japanese teachers, Konishi, Keiko Irino and Masako Onakado, for their dedication to the students throughout the year. ■ Harker Students Earn 25 Latin Exam Gold Medals Harker Latin students from Gr. 7-12 performed superbly in the 2005 National Latin Examination, topping last year’s impressive 22 gold medals with an astounding 25 gold medals in this year’s exams. Seventy-one Harker students received awards for their performances,

Students Experience Traditional Tea Ceremony In April students in Japanese teacher Masako Onakado’s Japanese 2 class visited Hakone Gardens in Saratoga. They spent a beautiful, warm day eating an “obento” lunch (boxed Japanese meal), strolling around the gardens full of birds, turtles and koi fish, and experiencing a Japanese tea ceremony. US Division Head Richard Hartzell, US English teacher Cheryl Cavanaugh and community service coordinaMasako Onakado - both photos

tor Jaja Hsuan accompanied the students. In preparation for the formal tea ceremony, students were instructed on the proper method beforehand. “The master of the tea ceremony was very impressed with how the students followed the steps for the formal ceremony,” said Onakado. “There are more than 20 steps, and the steps are very detailed.” Onakado joked that the most difficult part for many of the students was sitting on the floor throughout the ceremony. Though they were allowed to sit with crossed legs, if necessary, most of the students insisted on sitting in the traditional formal manner. “The tea ceremony was really interesting,” laughed Jessica Hsueh, Gr. 9, “but the sitting position hurt. I couldn’t stand up afterward and my legs were still numb like 30 minutes later!”


including two perfect papers. Jonathan Liu, Gr. 8, earned a gold medal in the Latin 1 Middle School examination by handing in a perfect paper for the second year in a row. Gold Medal recipients were as follows: Gr.12 – Roberta Wolfson; Gr. 11 – Sarah Fingerhood, Michael Kim, Jayasree Sundaram, Ariane Vartanian; Gr.10 – Ashley Dang, Cassie Kerkhoff, Richard Kwant; Gr. 9 – Janise Chan, Catherine Chiu, Colin Daw, Rachel Fong, Kritika Kailash, Michael Kang, Kelly O’Reilly, Thomas Roxlo, Eugenia Sorotokin, Ruchi Srivastava; Gr. 8 – Liu, Nirupama Gadagottu, Sophia Gilman, David Kastelman, Minaz Laiwalla, Sachin Rangarajan, Daniel Wyleczuk-Stern. The other perfect paper award winner was Brandon Araki, Gr. 7, who also received an outstanding achievement award in the Introduction to Latin category. ■ National Myth Exam The following MS students earned special recognition on the 2005 National Myth Exam: Silver Certificate/Medal: Gr. 8 – Sophia Gilman, Jonathan Liu, Sachin Rangarajan, Prachi Sharma; Gr. 7 – Matt Park. Bronze Certificate: Gr. 7 – Brandon

Arakil, Cole Davis, Elaine Ke, Sohini Khan, Scott Mohanram, Govind Raghunath, Nishadh Raghupathy; Gr. 8 – Nirupama Gadagottu, David Kastleman, Daniel Wyleczuk-Stern. ■ Medusa Mythology Exam Jonny Jenq, Gr. 11, earned a gold medal in the Medusa Mythology Exam administered in April, missing only two questions. The difficulty of the exam was such that only 4 out of 6,000 participants submitted perfect papers. Other Harker students receiving recognition were: Silver Medal: Colleen Lee, Gr. 11; Bronze Medal: Cristina Figueroa, Gr. 12; Hann-Shuin Yew, Gr. 11; Michael Kim, Gr. 11; Erin Newton, Gr. 10; Rachel Fong, Gr. 9. Corona Laura: Sarah Swernofsky, Gr. 11; Ruchi Srivastava, Gr. 9; Kritika Kailash, Gr. 9. Corona Oliva: Preeta Reddy, Gr. 10; Yuanyuan Pao, Gr. 10; Aarathi Minisandram, Gr. 9; Ankur Sharma, Gr. 9. A heartfelt thanks goes to Latin teachers John Hawley and Lisa Masoni for their outstanding work throughout the year! Congratulations to all of our talented foreign language students for their outstanding performances!

Awards Won in Spanish Poetry Contest MS Spanish students recited world-renowned Spanish poetry as part of the annual Girls’ Middle School Spanish Poetry Contest on Wed., Mar. 16, competing against girls from several other local private schools. Ananya Anand, Gr. 8, won second prize in the “Spanish as a Second Language” Category. “This was a really wonderful experience for me because I was able to show so many people the beauty of poetry as well as acting, since I had to be dramatic,” said Anand. Debra Yen, Gr. 8, placed third in the “Spanish as a Second Language” category. Said Yen, “This poetry contest was a very fun experience. Everybody supported each other and had a good time celebrating the Spanish language!” In addition, the following students received competition honor certificates: Chetan Vakkalagadda and Neha Sabharwal, both Gr. 8, for Advanced Spanish; Nikita Agrawal, Victor Chen, Daisy Lin, Shanthi Rajagopalan and Jane Thomas, all Gr. 7, for Intermediate Spanish; Noriko Ishisoko, Gr. 7, for Beginning Spanish. MS Spanish teachers Isabel Garcia, Deborah Martinez and Julie Pinzás prepared the students for their poetry readings. Congratulations to all of the participants for their exceptional performance! Harker News — June 05



Spring Instrumental Concert Features K-12 Performers Harker’s instrumental department was in fine fiddle on Apr. 21 in the Bucknall gym. Director Richard Frazier led the ensembles from each division through a varied program of jazz, folk and classical music. The US Jazz Ensemble started the program off with a bang with special guest vocalist Tara Chandra, Gr. 11, performing classics including “Route 66” and “I Got Rhythm.” The Bucknall String Orchestra showed their versatility with both Baroque and modern pieces. The US and MS Wind Ensembles performed, with sophomore Jessica Dickinson Goodman joining the younger group in the popular Celtic ballad “Barbara Allen.” The US String Orchestra, who toured to Europe for the first time this past February, gave the audience a taste of Corelli and Mozart. On this occasion of Frazier’s final Harker concert, the Harker music community thanks him for his dedication to the expansion of the instrumental program.

String Orchestras Take Top Honors at CMEA Festival The Harker String Orchestra (Gr. 7-12) and the Bucknall String Orchestra (Gr. 4-6) participated in the California Music Educators Association (CMEA) Orchestra Festival held at Lynbrook High School in San Jose on May 6. Both groups were awarded the highest rating of Superior, the MS/US group achieving theirs by a unanimous vote from the judges, which was particularly significant since this was that group’s first visit to the festival. Director Richard Frazier is proud of his students, who “have worked very diligently, acquiring skills and knowledge for a lifetime of music making.” In addition, 19 students in Gr. 4-12 who received high marks in the local Solo/Ensemble Festival were invited to compete in the State Solo/Ensemble Festival on the campus of CSU Sacramento on May 14. All 15 soloists and five ensembles performed magnificently, and students who won at least one gold award are: Gr. 4 – Patricia Huang; Gr. 5 – Andrew Lee, Dylan Qian; Gr. 7 – Sonya Huang; Gr. 9 – Dena Chen; Gr. 10 – Audrey Kwong, Shannon Tan; Gr. 11 – Eric Hsieh, David Yao; Gr. 12 – Jessica Wu, Gr. 12. Other participants were: Gr. 4 – Maya Sathaye, Vincent Yao; Gr. 7 – Connie Lu; Gr. 8 – Nikhil Raghuram; Gr. 9 – Robert Oh; Gr. 10 – Tracy Chou, Kristie Cu, Glenn Lee; Gr. 11 – Jason Han, Jeff Le. Please congratulate all of the students who participated in this event, which represents CMEA’s highest individual achievement.

More Staff Update (Cont. from p. 3) ■ Teachers Present at Conference US math teachers Joanne Mason, Misael Fisico, Carlynn Keilty, and Gabriele Stahl, and MS math teachers Scott Graham, Vandana Kadam and Camila Valdes attended the annual National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) conference in Anaheim April 6-9, along with 18,000 math teachers from around the country. Fisico gave a presentation on the relative strengths and features of Mathematica and Geometer Sketchpad. Mason was a Wolfram Featured Educator/Mentor in the Mathematica Teacher Network. ■ Division Head Change Christina Vail, Elementary School division head, has decided to pursue opportunities outside the Bay Area – we will miss Christy, and wish her the best in her new endeavors! Taking her place next fall to head up the elementary division of Gr. 4 and 5 will be faculty member Kristin Giammona. As an elementary history teacher, Harker News — June 05

department chair, former summer administrator and Harker alumna, Giammona brings to her new position a lifetime of Harker experience, and we welcome her to this new role. ■ Drama Teacher Performs US drama teacher Jeffrey Draper recently finished performing in a production of Becoming Memories, by Arthur Giron, with Center REPertory Company in Walnut Creek. Almost immediately upon closing that play, Draper opened in Steve Martin’s Picasso at the Lapin Agile, also at Center REP. ■ Teacher Published in CAIS Newsletter MS English teacher Stacie Newman contributed to the Spring, 2005 edition of the California Association of Independent Schools faculty newsletter. Newman’s article, “Painless Paper Grading,” offered both practical and light-hearted advice to middle school English teachers trying effectively to grade stacks of student papers. Well done, Stacie!

■ New College Counselor The College Counseling department is delighted to welcome Kevin Lum Lung, who has been the associate dean of admission at Santa Clara University for the past nine years. Counseling director Sandy Padgett noted that he is one of the most experienced and respected admission counselors in the Bay Area. “We are so pleased to have him with us as we begin to work with the very large classes of ’06, ’07 and ’08,” she said. ■ Teachers Perform at Ohlone Latin teacher John Hawley and music teacher Catherine Snider sing with the Ohlone Chamber Singers (OCS), and recently performed in an April concert which included the

world premiere of a piece commissioned by the OCS from Canadian composer Imant Raminsh. Snider, who leads two Harker choirs, said, “It’s great to be a sheep, and not the shepherd once in a while!” The group will tour to Warsaw, Berlin and Prague this summer. ■ New Library Clerk Welcome to Elena Erokhina, who will be joining the Blackford campus library staff part-time in the fall. She will also be working part-time at Stanford’s Green Library. Erokhina has worked in libraries in Los Angeles and in Iowa, and her husband is a librarian/archivist at the Hoover Institute at Stanford. “We are delighted to welcome this enthusiastic, libraryloving employee!” says library director Enid Davis.




Earth Week At Harker: Celebration and Conservation Teachers and students in all three divisions organized a wide variety of activities to honor and celebrate Earth Week in April. Students of MS science teachers Raji Swaminathan and Ilona Davies wrote eco-messages on 250 grocery bags from Whole Foods grocery store, which were then decorated by students in the LS science classes of Nina Anand, Michael Bourquin and Jason Pergament. The goal of this project was to raise awareness for customers and help save paper waste by encouraging the reduction and reuse of the bags. Conservation projects were also being prepared at all three divisions. LS social studies teacher Keith Hirota and the LS Service Club and Spirit Club promoted a program asking LS students to bring their own reusable silverware and cloth

Day assembly used fun activities to educate the students on the importance of recycling. Several LS teachers participated in a blindfolded activity, where they were handed various types of disposables (aluminum, paper, etc.) and challenged to find the correct receptacle for their trash. Other LS Earth Day activities included celebrating conservation, recycling and environmental awareness. In addition, Oncay organized Earth Day pledges for both campuses on his faculty Web site, and helped establish “Green Police Reports,” where students report the good or bad environmental behavior of other students with the goal of

napkins for the duration of Earth Week. Participation was recorded on a chart in the lunch area that also helped teach the students about reusable materials. LS language arts teacher Jason Oncay helped lead a push for less Styrofoam use on all campuses. LS teachers have started the “Harker Coffee Cup Community,” a collective effort of teachers and kitchen staff where the teachers donate their own reusable coffee mugs so that all teachers may use them to drink their coffee or tea; in return the kitchen staff has agreed to wash the mugs daily. The LS Earth

creating a more environmentally friendly campus. MS science teacher Simon Keilty organized an online student pledge to bring their own water bottles to school, beginning Earth Week. “This pledge will help reduce Harker-generated waste from disposable cups, milk cartons, and juice containers served at break, lunch, and after school,” explained Keilty. In the US, the Harker Environmental and Animal Rights Team (HEART) included announcements in the daily bulletin with interesting and useful tidbits about conservation and the environment. HEART also gave a presentation at the US Earth Day assembly “about the history of Earth Day and some of the issues that are important to this year’s Earth Day,” said club president Vani Pyda, Gr. 10.

Harker Sets Competition Record At Future Problem Solvers State Finals and seventh grader Arjun Mody. In addition, two individual competitors – Chris Bergland, Gr. 8 and Namrata Anand, Gr. 7 – also competed at the International Finals. “These students are incredibly self-motivated and self-directed, and are excellent at working together to get things accomplished,” said team advisor Cyrus Merrill after the State event. “The International Finals will be an intense challenge, going up against teams from all over the world. But it

Other winners from the state competition included the Senior Division “Presentation” team, who took second place in the state. Members of that team were sophomores Julia Havard, Ashley Morishige, Siobhan Stevenson, and Maya Ziv and Dominique Dabija, a Gr. 8 student who competed in the in Gr. 10-12 division!

A Whole Lot of Pennies for a Great Cause

Synopsys Update

LEGO World Festival

All three divisions recently participated in the Pennies for Patients fundraiser to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, raising a schoolwide total of over $6,000. The US service efforts took place in April, while the LS and MS completed their donation drives in May. The Pennies for Patients Coordinator, Emily McNaughton, was thrilled with the results. “I can’t believe your school went from $2,389 last year to $6,023 this year. That is amazing growth!” Overall, Harker was the fourth-largest donor among the 141 participating schools in Silicon Valley. MS and US students competed by grade

Students in both the LS and MS were among the award recipients at the 2005 Synopsys Silicon Valley Science and Technology Championships held recently.

Two Harker students, Aarathi Minisandram, Gr. 9, and Amritha Minisandram, Gr. 6, were members of a Northern California team that won the 1st place Judges Award at the FIRST LEGO League World Festival in May.


Tandon, Ashwin Mathur and Nikhil Raghuram, all Gr. 8. Harker’s “Presentation of Action Plan” team in the Senior Division (Gr. 10-12) also won the state championship. Members of that team are juniors Jonathan Chien, Sean Turner, Amira Valliani and Sameer Chopra. A third state championship was earned by the Middle Division “Presentation” team of eighth graders Denzil Sikka, Boris Brennerman, Alyssa Donovan, Chris Berglund

level to see which class could collect the most pennies, with the seniors winning the US competition. At the MS, service club adviser Steven Hewitt explained, “The collection contest was won by the 8th grade, but the true winners are the patients and facilities that will benefit from our efforts.”

Jaja Hsuan

Harker’s Senior and Middle Division Future Problem Solving teams earned an unprecedented six of the eight awards at the California State Finals, held Sat., Apr. 16 at UC Davis. Harker’s Middle Division (Gr. 7-9) team in the “Written Analysis of the Problem” competition earned the state championship and attended the International Finals, held Jun. 2-5 in Lexington, Kentucky. That team consisted of Sachin Rangaragan, Vikram

Supraja Swamy, Gr. 6, won second place in her category and the Labcoat Award for lab bench finesse for her project on, “The Effect of Hansen’s Soda on Teeth.” David Kastleman, Gr. 8, won honorable mention for his project, “The Effect of Cocoa on Coughing.” Other MS entrants were, “The Variation in Distance of Ammonite Suture Lines,” by Alan Wells, Gr. 7, and an engineering project entitled, “Maglevator,” entered by Erica Hansen and Elodie Nguyen, both Gr. 7.

will be greatly rewarding and gratifying to work with this dynamic group of young minds.”

The FIRST LEGO festival, which was part of the FIRST Robotics World Championship in Atlanta where the US Harker Robotics team also participated (see US section of this edition for more info), is considered the “little league” of the FIRST Robotics contest. The LEGO team competed against 73 other teams from 20 different nations. Congratulations to Aarathi and Amritha for this landmark win! Harker News — June 05


arts The talented artists from the US Fine Arts Department had their works on display throughout the month of May. Works were exhibited in the Dobbins lobby, the main lobby and the FDR, including some of the best pencil, charcoal, watercolor, stone carving, acrylic, marble, foam core and ink projects from the students in the drawing, painting, visual art, sculpture and ceramics classes. Art teacher Jaap Bongers said, “Some work was rotated mid-way through the show because we had more quality art than we could fit in one exhibit.” Don Maxwell, another art teacher whose students’ work was represented, called attention to the FDR display, which showed “two of our most promising painting students this year,” Christin Tu, Gr. 12 and Alisha Tolani, Gr. 11. The FDR exhibit also highlights projects from J Gaston’s graphics arts class.

MS student artists and their classmates enjoyed the annual MS Art Show on May 18, in Shah Hall. Art teacher Margaret McGovern helped host the event, where students enjoyed a variety of tasty treats while observing over 100 works of art from the entire school year. The artwork, which ranged from photo collages and sculptures to paintings, remained on display in Shah Hall through the month of May. Bravo to all of the MS artists – and their teachers – for their talent and creativity at this impressive exhibition!

The 23rd annual LS Art Show was held May 3-27 with 1,135 pieces of artwork on display in the gym lobby. All art was student work, created during art classes and in the after-school art program. Works on display included weaving, Fimo, crayon melt, zipper pulls, figure sculptures, ceramics, printmaking, value painting and woodworking. We congratulate our outstanding young artists, and thank our art teacher, Eric Hoffman, and afterschool art teachers, Gerry-Louise Robinson and Dana Lourie, for their tremendous work with the children. Harker News — June 05



kid talk “What advice do you have for the student who will be in your seat next year?”

Annual Gr. 4 Coloma Trip Grey skies and rain couldn’t keep the students from having a great time on the 13th annual Gr. 4 trip to Coloma in the California gold country. The students had fun being a part of their individualized “towns” where they bartered for ingredients at the general store, baked corn bread over an open fire, and crafted their own shelters to protect themselves from the elements (of course they actually slept in warm and cozy cabins!). Other activities included a hoe-down, hiking and exploring through the state park and a special evening with a Native American storyteller. Students had many wonderful stories to tell their families once they returned, and had even more fun sharing these experiences with their friends.

“To succeed as a 6th grader you need to listen well.” Victoria Chien, Gr. 6 “There’s an added bonus in doing well on tests and projects. The bonus is that by doing well you are given the chance to join Honors classes the following year.” Katie Forsberg, Gr. 6

Jason Pergament - all photos

“Stay focused and don’t be afraid to ask teachers for help.” Neel Saluhke, Gr. 5 “Don’t waste time in class and listen to your teachers, otherwise you will regret it come test time.” Akshay Jain, Gr. 5


“Don’t cheat because when you cheat it affects your grades negatively. Also, pay attention to social studies. It’s hard.” Dhaivath Raghupathi, Gr. 4 “Mr. Grey is cool but he doesn’t like people who are loud.” Bobby Kahlon, Gr. 4 “Try making friends with the Tamagawa students because you may never have that opportunity again.” Malika Mehrotra, Gr. 6

J4 Heart Free Dress

Continental Mathematics League Update

Harker LS students received a schoolwide free dress day May 27 for their efforts in collecting more than $12,000 for the Jump Rope for Heart Jump-a-thon held in April. While most of the students donned t-shirts and jeans, some of their favorite teachers and staff members donned school uniforms as their part of the reward to the students for their admirable efforts.

Kudos to the Gr. 3 G++ students and one G+ class that competed in the Continental Mathematics League (CML), a problem-solving contest that consisted of students from all U.S. states and many countries. Maia Adar and Alex Pei both earned cumulative scores of 17 out of a possible 18 on all three meets. Raymond Xu and Vikram Sundar earned cumulative scores of 16, and Katherine Paseman earned a cumulative score of 15. A total of 59 third grade students and two second graders participated in the Gr. 3 contest. Harker’s team placed 1st in its region, which included Belgium, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, Singapore and the

UK. Their cumulative score, over the three meets, was 106. Only 18 out of 547 schools in the country scored in the top 3%, making this inaugural trip a successful one for Harker. The Continental Math League (CML) is a nationally sponsored mathematical competition. Students are challenged to solve six difficult problems in thirty minutes. The problems are designed to encourage students to use a variety of problem solving techniques in the areas of mathematical and visual problem solving. Harker students participated in five meets during their math classes throughout the year.

“Carpe Diem.” Priya Sahdev, Gr. 6


Milton Muui

Andy Beals

Roopal Mayor

Gr. 5 parents met at the final monthly meeting this year to chat over coffee and bagels. Thank you to all the great Grade Level Coordinators who help plan these gatherings. Visit the Web site to learn about other grade level activities throughout the year.

Roopal Mayor

parent chat

In May Harker 5th graders visited Fitzgerald Marine Preserve at Moss Beach, navigating slippery tide pools, and enjoying searching for sea cucumbers, octopi, sea urchins, and other marine life.

Service Club members from Gr. 4-6 took part in a Parent Appreciation Car Wash on May 21. Between suds wars and water fights, the kids washed cars to thank their parents by showing them how much their dedication and hard work means to them.

The Rec Dept. held the last of its week-long Character Counts events recently, with themed activities such as “Pat on the Back” and “Compliment a Friend” days. Students glowed when receiving or giving compliments to one another! Harker News — June 05

sports LS Dance Production 2005 a Very Happy Event! Happiness Is ... 238 Gr. 1-6 dancers performing on the Bucknall stage! On May 26-28 the Bucknall Dance Concert, “Happiness Is . . .,” entertained three packed and delighted audiences. Director Gail Palmer asked the Bucknall faculty and staff to share with her what makes them happy, and the dancers then interpolated the many wonderful suggestions into their dances. Palmer said that the students amazed her with their dedication and enthusiasm: “I am very proud of all the dancers and grateful for the effort and energy they gave to their dances.” The audience enjoyed toe-tapping music, adorable costumes, bright lights, smiling performers and dance routines that grooved and touched their hearts. One of the highlights of the concert was watching the faculty and staff strut their stuff on stage. “It means so much to have

the teachers involved and makes it a complete community event,” stated Palmer. The show’s production staff included Kristin Maurer and Amalia Vasconi as assistants to the director/choreographers, and technical director Danny Higgins Dunn. Kudos to Palmer for a dance concert which did indeed make everyone very happy! Photos online.

After the close of their baseball and softball seasons, the LS boys and girls moved on to boys volleyball and girls flag football. The Gr. 4 and 5 boys hit the courts and learned many new fundamentals necessary to play successful team volleyball. Although they didn’t play any matches, they got a sense of how the game was played when they played their coaches during the last days of practice. The Gr. 6

Mark Tantrum and Steven Wong, parent - all photos

boys played a few scrimmage matches and worked very hard to learn what it takes to play with live officials, rally scoring, and inside the Harker gym.

The Gr. 4-6 girls participated in after-school flag football, where they learned fundamentals and skills. They ended their season with some fun scrimmages against some of the boys from the Gr. 4-6 boys flag football teams. —Nick Gassmann, Coach

Harker News — June 05




Students Bring 1,000 Cranes to Tamagawa

Girls and Robotics Another group of Harker students has discovered a love of robotics this year. The Gr. 4 GEARS (Girls Excited About RoboticS) began working together last summer in an attempt to learn more about robotics, develop their skills working in a group and have some fun. At their weekly work sessions, the GEARS’s love for robotics grew quickly as they prepared for their first competition. Their research project included interviews with LS teacher Karen Glovka and Harker parent Elizabeth Twaddell, and a field trip to the Saratoga campus


to chat with the US Robotics team and meet their robot. At their first regional competition, the girls took First Place for their research project, No Limits Project, gaining them an invitation to the state competition, where they earned a Second Place award for Robust Robot Design. Congratulations, girls! Participants: Eva Bruketa, Jenny Chen, Cristina Jerney, Cecilia Lang-Ree, Laura Pedrotti and Molly Wolfe.

Photos supplied by Bill Bost

As the students toured and visited with their host families, they saw a variety of Japanese temples, shrines and landmarks as the chaperones were invited by their Tamagawa counterparts to view a sumo match and a Tokyo Giants baseball game. The entire 6th grade class was represented when the groups visiting Tamagawa paid tribute to the “Memorial for Sadako.” The memorial immortalized the story of Sadako Sasaki, born two years before the fall of the atomic bomb. In her youth she was diagnosed with leukemia (thought to be caused by radiation from the bomb), and was told by a friend that if she folded 1,000 paper cranes she would be granted one wish. Her wish was to have world peace. After passing away, Sadako’s friends published a book, inspiring the children of Japan to collect enough money

to resurrect a memorial in honor of Sadako. A plaque at the bottom of the statue reads, “This is our cry, This is our prayer, Peace in the World.” To honor Sadako and the children of the A-bomb, Harker’s 6th grade students folded 1,000 cranes that were taken to Hiroshima with their traveling classmates. International director Bill Bost felt, “very impressed with [the students’] hard

students for the rest of their lives.”

work and creativity in putting 1,000 cranes together to take to the memorial in Hiroshima in the name of the students at Harker. The experience of visiting the memorial is an experience that will stay with the

“Everything about the trip was wonderful,” stated LS math teacher Stephanie Woolsey, “but at the end of the farewell assembly the Harker and Tamagawa students took part in singing the Harker school song. The school bell choir accompanied the two groups, and what impressed me most was that even though the Tamagawa students were not fluent in English, they were able to seamlessly sing the words to the song as if they had been going to school with the Harker students all along.” All of the chaperones and students made the most of the trip and were very sad to say goodbye to their new friends. However, the trip became a lifetime memory for all, and Janiak summarized the feeling shared by everyone involved: “Everything was perfect.”

Annual Book Fair

Kiddie Carnival

Our librarians and 36 parent volunteers transformed the LS library into the 11th annual Scholastic Book Fair, a lively bookstore with software, posters and books on sale for all ages. Volunteers helped with set up, and aided shoppers with their purchases, which totaled $17,000. The $4,072 in profits will go toward the purchase of more books for the library. A big “thanks” to the parent volunteers, library staff and shoppers who supported this special event!

The 25th annual Kiddie Carnival, held on the last day of school, was a celebration of the year, and the LS recreation staff and parent volunteers happily made this year’s event very special. Dubbed “Sailing Into Summer,” the events definitely put a little wind into the sails of the children, as they embark on a summer full of fun, excitement and new experiences. Thank you to the recreation staff who helped with the Carnival and made sure our students were safe all year long: Nicole Vazquez, Gina Lopez, Kiely Modiri, Sandra Jesus, Tobias Wade, Kathy Ewers, Erica Coye, Mychal Lynch, Maureen Connolly, Rickey Cosentino, Tina Fajardo, Danielle Lawrence, Amy Wu, Anthony Elias, Shannon Hickey, Jeff Diokno, Angenee Tenette, Ben Mahon, Rowan Dow, Jesus Banuelos, Milton Mui, Kelle Sloan and rec director Kim Coulter!

Nick Gassmann

continued Hirata. “The trip to Japan was truly incredible,” exclaimed LS teacher Kristen Janiak, “but in particular was the feeling of community that existed at the Tamagawa School and how instantaneously we

became a part of it.” On the first morning the students and chaperones were greeted by a cheerful group of Japanese students who sang and invited the Harker students to join them in their morning stretches and songs.

Laura Lang-Ree

Mark Tantrum

Twenty-six Harker 6th graders, along with six chaperones, made the voyage across the mighty Pacific to take part in the 10th annual trip to Tamagawa, Japan. As part of Harker’s international exchange program, “the students visited and learned about Japanese culture, which included shopping and traditional cuisine, and also Japanese history,” said LS teacher Lisa Hirata of the trip. “The teachers, students and parents in Tamagawa were so welcoming, hospitable and giving of their time that it made the trip so much more enjoyable,”

Harker News — June 05

Over 300 Special Guests Attend and Enjoy Annual Grandparents’ Day afternoon’s entertainment. The guests were then guided by a slew of parent volunteers to homerooms where they found their students awaiting them, with smiles on their faces, to stroll the campus with their special guests, introduce them to their teachers and show them where and what they have been studying. After a stop at the book fair for some needed reading material and the gym for a quick snack, the stu-

K Classes Ask a Familiar Question “Does Anyone Really Know the Muffin Man?” The kindergartners asked this question in their 50-minute musical theater production in June. All three K classes participated in the show, which was written, directed and produced by music teacher Roxann Hagemeyer. The show’s characters included Hansel and Gretel, 10 Little Indians (speaking English and Japanese!) and the seven dwarfs, and included over 25 favorite songs, including “Old MacDonald,” “It’s a Small, Small, World,” “3 Blind Mice,” and the title song. The play was enjoyed so much by the Gr. 1-5 audience that for the closing number every student was clapping and singing along and the kindergartners received a thunderous standing ovation. Thanks to Hagemeyer and her parent volunteers, the Gr. 6 tech class, choreographer Gail Palmer, and all the K teachers for such a fun event! Photos online.

Harker News — June 05

dents ended a wonderful day of sharing their school lives with some very loving and wonderful guests. Also, as a special part of Grandparents’ Day, grandparents were invited to join the Grandparents’ Association. Jordan Thompson, Gr. K, was happy to hear that her

Nick Gassmann - all photos

On May 6, our LS students – and parent volunteer greeters – eagerly awaited the arrival of more than 300 grandparents and special adult guests at this year’s annual Grandparents’ Day. Guests were first treated to a special program in the gym, which included a fun trivia quiz about Howard and Diana Nichols, who were on hand to visit with the guests, and who are retiring at the end of this year. Guests seemed to enjoy learning new and interesting facts about the Nichols – such as Diana’s area of focus in college, and how strict Howard really was as dutymaster – and a few guests received beautiful orchid plants as prizes for answering questions correctly. The program also included student performances by the Gr. 1, 5 and 6 students. A warm thanks to Roxann Hagemeyer and Michael Pease for all of their hard work in making this year’s performances a standout. A special Kindergarten Hat Parade rounded out the

grandmother, Elene Thompson, joined the list of grandparents in the Association. Along with Thompson, members include Robert and Carol Amick, Edward and Connie Barthold, Donald Beck, M.C. and Ann Chen, Mark and Dorothy Enayati, Anthony and Louise Giammona, Alberta Hughes, Mary L. Humphry, Robert and Lynn Knudsen, Marvin and Rosalind Linder, Natalie Mandell, Robert and Doris Modesitt, Bill and Grace Morishige, Israel and Joan Orr, Gordon and Doris Porter, Colleen Prawicki, Olga Richardson, Bob and Sheila Swanson, Elene Thompson, Tom and Betsy Twadell and Peggy Yamaguchi. For more information on this association, contact brandeet@harker. org. Photos online.

Annual Troll, er, Ogre Awards Year after year, the Gr. 2 Ogre Awards have entertained and amused those in attendance, and this year’s 10th annual event was no exception. Eighty-nine students - and nine puppets - performed this year in the library, a change of venue from past years where it was held in the gym. Not your every day awards ceremony, the Ogre Awards allow students to perform stories that they’ve learned and discussed, and also vote on their favorite characters from those stories. Costumes consisted of colorful and adorable head and shoulder pieces, and the students received their own little Ogre Award at the end of the day (one that resembles a small, blue haired troll!). The students put on a flawless performance in front of administrators and teachers. Elementary Division Head Christy Vail opened the show with a parody rendition of “Everything’s Coming Up Ogres!” Primary Division Head Sarah Leonard told the children that, “she sat through the entire show with a smile from ear to ear on her face.” Photos online.


Change. Such a word! For many, the word conjures feelings of anxiety. In the MS, change is our way of life, as students in this age group regularly accomplish vast changes. The move to Blackford will bring changes for us all. The primary goal of this first year is to transplant an exceptional program – grounded in the culture we’re all familiar with – to a new geographical location, and this will be accomplished with the help of our first ‘senior’ Blackford class, the class of 2010, and the current faculty and administration. MS Dean of Students Jack Bither, a Harker veteran of 24 years who brings his perspective as a teacher, coach and parent, and myself - with my 28 years of Harker experience - will bring over 50 years of “the Harker way” to this new campus! Adding the sixth grade to our MS campus is an exciting change. They will dress in ‘middle school blues,’ and participate in broadened programs. The new advisory program will provide student support in smaller groups so each adviser can focus fully on the students they see weekly. The MS trips – Yosemite, National Parks, and especially the exciting return to Washington, DC for Gr. 8 – are all planned for the week of October 24 (you will soon receive an informational letter on these), and we also look forward to a continuation of our relationship with our sister schools in Japan and China. Changes, many changes, but I don’t feel anxiety. I am excited by the many opportunities and challenges facing us as we prepare for our first Blackford year. Celebrate with me the creation of a great middle school campus promising increased programs and options for all of the Harker community.

—Cindy Kerr, MS Division Head




Teacher Forms Instant Bond with Shanghai Sister School MS English teacher Mark Gelineau recently took part in a three-week visit to Harker’s sister-school, the Shanghai World Foreign Language Middle School (SWFLMS) in Shanghai, People’s Republic of China. During his stay in Shanghai, Gelineau taught their Gr. 8 students English poetry, Native American literature, and American dialects and slang, and some history classes covering the Victorian era and the Cold War. “I had several e-mails during his time in Shanghai from the head of the school asking for us to extend Mark’s stay by a few more months! They loved him and adored him – we’re lucky to get Mark back,” laughed Bill Bost, director of international programs at Harker. The people of the SWFLMS made quite

an impression on Gelineau as well. “The Shanghai students who visited Harker earlier this year took me sightseeing every Friday,” said Gelineau. “It was just me and the kids, and they would lead me through the subways, through the markets, to dinner. It was amazing the level of independence they demonstrated.” Mark Gelineau - both photos

speak out

Gelineau’s openness to the local culture allowed him to forge an instant bond with his hosts. “We are in love with Mark,” said SWFLMS English

Literary Publication

Election Returns Are In

The 2005 issue of enlight’ning, the annual MS literary magazine, was published and distributed in early June. For this year’s edition, the publication’s content was expanded to include a wider variety of creative media. “We are branching out in a few ways,” said Stacie Newman, MS expository writing teacher and enlight’ning faculty advisor, “including student photography and using some graphic design elements to make the (magazine) more professional.” The new issue work and will include the artwriting of over 30 students in Gr. 7 and 8. A copy of the publication is provided for each MS student to take home. If your family did not receive a copy of enlight’ning, and would like one, please contact Stacie Newman at

As the MS prepares to change campuses, next year’s student council is already in place. The following Gr. 7 students were recently elected by their classmates, and will serve as the Gr. 8 student leadership in the MS’s inaugural year at the new campus in the fall: President – Christine Trinh; Vice-President – Arjun Mody; Treasurer – Patricia Chang; Recording Secretary – Eugene Huang; Corresponding Secretary – Sean Morgan; Spirit Commissioner – Colby Rapson; Spirit Assistant – Sanjeev Datta; Senator-at-Large – Vinay Kumar.

Department Chair Grace Zhu. “His willingness to embrace the Chinese culture has endeared him to everyone. His energetic and creative teaching styles have shown all of our teachers new ways to teach. You are so fortunate to have a teacher of his caliber.” Gelineau is confident that, during his short stay in Shanghai, he created friendships that will last a lifetime. “There is a sixth grade teacher in Shanghai that I have e-mailed every day since returning home. I am currently putting together a care package for all of the sixth grade teachers there,” said Gelineau. He continued, “I loved it, and I would do anything in my power to go back and spend more time with our amazing partners in Shanghai.” film and technology, for the various decades,” said Merrill. Merrill is always the first to join in the fun, wearing special outfits for every decade of the 20th century, along with a few from the 19th century he wears earlier in the school year.

Tasty Science MS science teacher Raji Swaminathan’s Gr. 7 physical science classes took part in a special “cookie lab” Apr. 27 where students baked cookies, and then were asked to identify the chemical reactions that took place during the baking process.

Blasts From the Past MS history teacher Cyrus Merrill and his students continued the tradition of dressing up in outfits connected to various time periods as part of the class’s Decade Presentations. The activity is meant to help students gain insight into how political and social changes during the ‘50s, ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s affected other aspects of the culture during those time periods. “Students are asked to give presentations on the connections between political events and social history, like fashion, music, art, television, Harker News — June 05



Congratulations to the Class of 2005! We wish you all great adventures at your chosen colleges in the fall (see below), and on behalf of the entire Harker community, we hope all your dreams come true!

Photo credits: Emily Chow, Sharon Her, Matt Wong, students

Bentley College – 1 Boston College – 2 Boston University – 3 Bryn Mawr College – 1 UC Berkeley – 14 UC Davis – 15 UC Irvine – 3 UCLA – 9 UC San Diego – 4 UC Santa Barbara – 1 UC Santa Cruz – 1 California Institute of Technology – 1 Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo – 1 Carnegie Mellon – 2 Case Western Reserve University – 2 University of Chicago – 2 Claremont McKenna – 1 Columbia – 2 Cornell – 2 Dartmouth – 1 Duke – 1 George Washington – 2 Georgetown – 1 Harvard – 1 University of Illinois, Champaign – 1 James Madison – 1 MIT – 7 Middlebury College – 1 University of Missouri, Kansas City – 1 NYU – 4 Northwestern – 2 University of Pennsylvania – 6 Princeton – 2 Saint Mary’s – 1 University of San Diego – 1 Santa Clara University – 3 Sarah Lawrence College – 1 USC – 3 Stanford – 7 Wellesley College – 4 Whitman College – 1 Yale – 5





Congratulations to the Class of 2005! We wish you all great adventures at your chosen colleges in the fall (see below), and on behalf of the entire Harker community, we hope all your dreams come true!

Photo credits: Emily Chow, Sharon Her, Matt Wong, students

Bentley College – 1 Boston College – 2 Boston University – 3 Bryn Mawr College – 1 UC Berkeley – 14 UC Davis – 15 UC Irvine – 3 UCLA – 9 UC San Diego – 4 UC Santa Barbara – 1 UC Santa Cruz – 1 California Institute of Technology – 1 Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo – 1 Carnegie Mellon – 2 Case Western Reserve University – 2 University of Chicago – 2 Claremont McKenna – 1 Columbia – 2 Cornell – 2 Dartmouth – 1 Duke – 1 George Washington – 2 Georgetown – 1 Harvard – 1 University of Illinois, Champaign – 1 James Madison – 1 MIT – 7 Middlebury College – 1 University of Missouri, Kansas City – 1 NYU – 4 Northwestern – 2 University of Pennsylvania – 6 Princeton – 2 Saint Mary’s – 1 University of San Diego – 1 Santa Clara University – 3 Sarah Lawrence College – 1 USC – 3 Stanford – 7 Wellesley College – 4 Whitman College – 1 Yale – 5



sports “HONK!” Performers Wow Classmates and Parents A cast of 29 MS performers recently gave a marvelous presentation of “HONK!” an updated musical version of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Ugly Duckling.” Performing arts teacher and director Monica MacKinnon said, “I chose the script because I thought that students could relate to feeling different. Hopefully, the show made people think about differences, and tolerance of those differences.” Over 500 of their fellow Harker students saw the play during the daytime performances, while the evening performances each drew over 200 attendees. Performing arts and Harmonics teacher Susan Nace served as the play’s musical director. Both directors wish to thank Brian Larsen and Paul Val-

lerga of the Harker tech staff, Harker’s maintenance, food service and facilities staff, and all the parents who volunteered for all their support throughout the preparation and performance of “HONK!” And many thanks to the students for another wonderful production! Photos online.

The always entertaining A boys volleyball team boasted an 11-4 record this season, while taking 2nd place at both the St. Christopher and Harker volleyball tournaments. Arman Gupta and Daniel Tien helped the team accomplish their feats this season. The Harker boys B volleyball team went 3-8-1. With impressive dedication and good roots in fundamentals they were able to rattle off a few wins against 8th and 7th grade teams.

The team played a handful of games against strong 8th grade teams and won some matches, beating them with the help of Chad Gordon and Rohan Chopra. As part of their annual end-of-the-year activities the boys volleyball teams challenged the girls A and B volleyball teams. The A girls, with many experienced club players, got the best of the greatly improved A boys in an exciting two-game match, while the impressive and much improved B boys edged out the girls in two games. The MS tennis team went 3-3 in league and qualified for league playoffs. Led by the racquets of Aarthi Padmanabhan, Srikrishna Seeni and Katherine Harris, the team was able to impress many other teams within their league with strong serves and long rallies. —Theresa “Smitty” Smith, Gr. 4-8 Athletic Director and Nick Gassmann, Coach Harker News — June 05




Second Annual Grade 8 Promotion Ceremony The Harker MS held its second annual Gr. 8 Promotion Ceremony for 140 students on Wed., June 8, in the Saratoga gym. Harmonics delighted the hundreds of parents and guests in attendance with a wonderful rendition of “The Gift of Who You Are,” and the entire 8th grade class sang the Harker school song. Second semester awards and final awards for Gr. 8 students were handed out. Diana Nichols delivered the opening remarks, and Howard Nichols gave the closing remarks, at the couple’s final MS ceremony before retiring at the end of this school year. Congratulations to the students for their accomplishments and dedication, and we look forward to seeing most of you next year as incoming freshmen!

■ Ankita Shah, Gr. 8, qualified to participate in the USA Gymnastics 2005 Level 9 Junior Olympic Western Championships, the highest competition a gymnast in Shah’s category can reach. In order to qualify for this event, which will be held in St. Louis, Missouri, May 5 – 8, Shah first had to succeed at the local and state levels, then qualify at the April Level 9 Regional Championships where she competed against the best Level 9 gymnasts from California, Arizona, Nevada and Oregon. ■ Miriam Lee, Gr. 7, won a silver medal in the 14th annual All-American Chinese School Brush Painting and Calligraphy Competition. Each of 38 Chinese schools from nine different states selected and submitted their best works. Lee, who won the competition’s bronze medal last year, beautifully wrote a classic Chinese poem on a large display. Her work will be exhibited in and around the Boston area, and posted on the Web site of the Foundation for Chinese Performing Arts. Congratulations to Lee for this unique accomplishment!

Friendship Assembly MS students were treated to an assembly on friendship May 5, courtesy of STEP (The Student Touring Ensemble Program), a multicultural group that provides theater experiences that address social and political issues facing young people today. The group, founded by San Jose State University professor Buddy Butler, per formed “Some of My Best Friends,” which was intended to be an open-ended play that did not present conclusions,


but which put forward problems for discussion. Harker students participated actively in the discussion following the play. Some of the themes addressed were racism, abuse, violence, friendship and peer pressure. Said Butler, “One of the main goals of the company is to promote productions reflecting an ethnically diverse society to enlighten, enhance and educate youth of a variety of cultural backgrounds through theater.” He added, “Each production also has a firm foundation in literature, thus promoting learning and literacy.”

Multicultural Week Special activities for this annual April event included: an ethnic free dress day, where all students wearing ethnic garb received homeroom spirit points; multicultural food tasting, where MS parents brought in various ethnic foods for students to sample and provided some background information on the cuisine; a multicultural assembly featuring student performances; and spirit events, including a scavenger hunt featuring multicultural items allowing students to earn spirit points.

Students Have Fun During Wild Spirit Week Fun Class participation was overwhelming and school spirit was at a fevered pitch as the MS celebrated its final Spirit Week on the Saratoga campus, before moving to the new Blackford campus in the fall. The 8th grade class especially shined as they said goodbye to MS. A group of Gr. 8 students – Liz Cutler, Liz Case and Diana Beck, with help from Jenna Glasa and Christine Emery – won the top prize at the hilarious lip synch spirit competition with their rendition of “Sk8ter Boi” by Avril Lavigne. In addition, the 8th grade won the overall Spirit Week competition. Some of the week’s highlights included the fabulous ‘70s and ‘80s outfits on decade dress day, and MS teachers Margaret Wright, Chrissy Chang and Mark Gelineau dressing as the rock band KISS at the lip synch contest.

CML Contest Results Students in MS math teacher Scott Graham’s Honors Algebra classes took the California Math League (CML) Algebra 1 contest in late April. Sonya Huang and Vishesh Jain, both Gr. 7, tied for 1st place by scoring 28 out of a possible 30, and were awarded math contest books. Seventh graders Brea Borlas, Nathaniel Edwards, Daisy Lin and Sri Seeni, and eighth grader Gloria Ye all tied for third with a score of 27, and were awarded certificates.

Photo supplied by Ilona Davies

MS Kudos!

Gr. 7 science students in Dr. Ilona Davies’ class participated in a “slime polymer” lab for their final lab activity of the year. “The students had a lot of fun with it,” said Davies. Harker News — June 05



speak out

Harker Wins First Place - National Science Bowl The Harker Science Bowl Team won first place in the Hydrogen Fuel Cell Model Car Challenge as part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Science Bowl, held Apr. 28 – May 2 in Washington, D.C. The victory in the cell car challenge, where teams had to use provided materials to build a hydrogen fuel cell car on site, earned the team a mention in the Local section of the May 1 edition of the San Jose Mercury News, and $1,750 for Harker’s science department. As reported in the March edition of the Harker News, the team earned a trip to the National Science Bowl for the second consecutive year by winning first place overall at the regional championships in April. Team members were: Mason Liang, Gr. 12; Lev Pisarsky, Gr. 12; Yi Sun, Gr. 11; Hann Yew, Gr. 11; Jasper Shau, Gr. 11. Congratulations to the Harker Science Bowl Team for another outstanding campaign!

Harker students in the MS and US have performed impressively in several recent math competitions. Junior Yi Sun became one of 12 national winners in the USA Math Olympiad on Apr. 19-20, and has been invited to a two-day Olympiad Awards Ceremony in Washington, DC. Freshman Charlie Fang was also selected as one of only 250 students nationwide to be invited to take the nine-hour written exam. Participants for the Math Olympiad are chosen from among the highest scorers on previous national math competitions. Additionally, both Sun and Fang have been invited to participate in this year’s Math Olympiad Summer Program at the University of Nebraska, which is designed to provide training for current and future math Olympians and mathematics students of great promise. At the summer program, a team of six students will be selected from among the twelve US winners to form the US delegation to the International Mathematics Olympiad, to be held this July in Merida, Mexico. Sun also won all four rounds of the Mandelbrot contest, a national math competition. Sophomores Justin Chin and Jessie Li were also among the top scoring students in the nation, helping the Harker team to earn sixth place overall in the nation. Seventeen Harker students participated in the Santa Clara Valley Mathematics Association Math Field Day, held on Apr. 30 at San Jose State University. Freshman Spencer Liang earned 5th place in the geometry contest, while Chin earned 9th place in the Discovery Quest competition. Robert Li and Hailey Lam, both juniors, won 10th place in the Leap Harker News — June 05

Frog Team Relay. In addition, Harker US math teacher Misael Fisico was the organizer for the entire SCVMA Math Field Day event.

JETS Rank Nationally The Harker Varsity A team of the Junior Engineering Technical Society (JETS) was recently announced the national winner in the Division 2 category of the annual JETS competition. The Junior Varsity A team earned the distinction of third in the nation. As reported in the May edition both of these teams were ranked first in the state, earning them consideration for national ranking. Congratulations to both of these teams for their amazing accomplishment!

Physics Bowl Wins

Robotics Nationals Team advisor and faculty member Eric Nelson reported that the Harker Robotics Team had an exciting experience as first time participants in the FIRST Robotics Conference national competition in Atlanta, April 21-23. He added that the team was greeted with a surprise upon their arrival in Atlanta. “FIRST had changed the requirements, and the team had to scramble to meet new requirements for their primary electrical system in less than 90 minutes,” Nelson said. “But we did it, with less than ten minutes to spare.” Dealing with two unexpectedly burnt out motors on the first morning of the competition, the team once again pulled together, winning their first three contests, and having high hopes of reaching the semi-finals. After finishing 27th in their division, the team came away with some important lessons for the future. “We had built a good robot,” said Nelson. “But we learned that to make the top rankings, you have to

Harker physics students performed exceptionally well in the 2005 Physics Bowl, garnering the top overall score of any team in their region of California, Hawaii, Nevada, American Samoa and Guam. The Harker team, with adviser Eric Nelson, ranked among the top ten teams in the competition in Division II, the category for students in advanced physics courses. In addition, Jay Han, Gr. 10, earned the secondExhausted team members take a quick nap while highest individual waiting for their return flight from Atlanta. score in the region. hold your own against a complete The Physics Bowl is a national team of good robots. You have to physics contest sponsored the have an excellent robot. We can get American Association of Physics there!” The Robotics program has Teachers, Frey Scientific and Texas been made possible in part by a Instruments, Inc., designed to grant from the Synopsys Commugenerate interest in physics and to nity Fund at Community Foundation recognize outstanding high school Silicon Valley. Congratulations to this physics students and their year’s team for making it to nationals! teachers. Dr. Eric Nelson

National Math Scene

Science and Technology and Facilities, Oh My! Once upon a time, in “Candide,” Voltaire pointed out the importance of visiting other lands. Somewhat later, Dorothy learned her lesson thanks to a visit to the Land of Oz. As an experienced life traveler, I haven’t learned much; however, as an independent school traveler, I have learned a few things, including this: any good independent school needs a state-of-the-art center for science and technology. Period.

“…any good independent school needs a state-of-theart center for science and technology. Period.” We have heard about Harker’s vaunted faculty and students — and rightfully so, for you will find no better at any school in the country. The science and technology facilities are another matter. Nearly thirty years ago, I watched the parents, friends and alumni of St. Mark’s School of Texas provide the funds for the type of facility that has served as a model for the other great independent schools of the country. Not only did the building provide the infrastructure for great educational opportunities and increase the school’s already great prestige exponentially, but also it helped attract and retain a brilliant faculty of scientists. As we look ahead, it is clear that the future is close upon us. The students and faculty are already here; it is time for the facilities to follow, and this is not a job for The Harker School; it is a duty that rests squarely on the shoulders of The Harker Community.

—Richard Hartzell, US Division Head




Senior Showcase Another Conservatory year has come to a spectacular close with the final performances of the candidates (now graduates) of the Harker Certificate Program. At the

lovely theater at Hoover Middle School, the following students gave their fine performances and received their certificates: Dance: Katie Ball, Rubina Chuang, Mariama Eghan, Yagmur Ilgen, Christine Kang, Tiffany Lau,

Debbie Liang, Fiona Lundie, Aditi Uttarwar; Instrumental Music: Jason Gutstein, Tanu Shenoy, Jessica Wu, Justin Wu; Vocal Music: Kevin Busch, Kathy Peng; Musical Theater: Estelle Charlu, Rachel Newman, Kimberley Wong; Technical Theater: Kamilla Khaydarov, Pamela Williams; Theater: Alice Chi, Genna Erlikhman, Boris Fedorov, Kamilla Khaydarov, Roberta Wolfson.


Spring Vocal Concert On Apr. 19 the FDR rang with the beautiful tones of Cantilena, the US’s all-female classical vocal ensemble, and with the humor of the a cappella group Guys’ Gig. The program was divided into genres, including madrigals, opera and musical theater, as well as two pop songs from the “Guys.” Congratulations to Conser vator y Cer tificate Candidates who per formed solos: sophomores Molly Newman and Vani Pyda, and juniors Avanti Deshpande, Katherin Hudkins and Gail Nakano. Special kudos to senior Kathy Peng who, in addition to her duet with Nakano, conducted a Mandarin piece she prepared with the choir. She also provided the translation and program notes. Applause to the director of both groups, Susan Nace!

AMT Recognizes Forty-Second Street Harker’s spring musical once again garnered impressive recognition from American Musical Theater’s high school honors program. Kudos for “Forty-Second Street” included nominations for Best Supporting Actor for Lauren Gutstein, Siobhan Stevenson, and Peter Obara, who made it to the final six. Best Actor nominees were Kevin Busch and Kimberley Wong. At the final awards ceremony, Tommy Holford was awarded Outstanding Dancer in a Lead Role, an award created just for him, proving that the AMT folks noticed what we’ve all known for a long time – Tommy can really tap!

Downbeat Performs for Junior League Downbeat, the US jazz choir directed by Laura Lang-Ree and Catherine Snider, was honored to receive an invitation to perform for the Junior League of San Jose in April. Members of the League attended the Harker Fashion Show and were so impressed by Downbeat’s performance, they asked the group to sing at their recent volunteer appreciation luncheon. Way to go, singers! Harker News — June 05

SPORTS US Sports Hard to believe another spring has come and gone, and with it another season of sport. No report of the spring season would be complete without a reference to all of the rain we saw this year, playing havoc with the baseball, softball and tennis schedules and causing a record number of postponements.

Steven Wong - parent

The boys tennis team led the way this spring in accomplishing three milestones. After completing a 12-6 season, and a 2nd place finish in the PSAL, Coach Craig Pasqua’s team qualified for the CCS playoffs for the fourth time in the past five years. This year yielded the team’s first ever CCS playoff victory with a 6-1 dismantling of Yerba Buena HS. The second round was not as kind, however, as the team fell to perennial power and CCS runner-up Menlo. Not content with that the team accomplished another first by advancing their top doubles team, senior Varoon Bhagat and freshman Rajiv Ragu, to the individual doubles tournament. The talented doubles team compiled an impressive 22-3 record this season, with two of the losses coming in the PSAL tournament championship and the CCS tournament. This was reflected in another first time accomplishment, where the team had a record-setting seven players earn All-League 1st team (Eric Liu, Eric Trinh, and Ragu), 2nd team (Bhagat) and honorable mention (Harry Tseng, Rohan Mehra, Rohan Narayen) PSAL honors. All but Bhagat will return next season. In other sports, several individuals accomplished great things as well. In track and field, super sophomore Jacob Bongers brought home 1st place in the PSAL league championships’ triple jump event. Bongers also medaled in the long jump and the 200 meters, scoring 24 points individually. He was joined as a Harker News — June 05

briefs PSAL champion by senior John Ollila who defended his PSAL pole vault title this spring. Both athletes earned the right to compete in the CCS Track and Field championships. Unfortunately, a leg injury prevented Ollila from attempting to advance to the state finals, a feat he missed by one place last year.

to run some track as well. Proving he was more than just an athlete, Ravipati delivered a tremendously moving tribute to Dr. Tim Woods while introducing Woods as one of two faculty speakers at this year’s Baccalaureate.

Freshman golfer Mike Shwe earned 1st Team All-League honors as he advanced to the CCS Finals this past season. Shwe shot a 77 in the CCS tournament finishing in the top half of the talented field. The team finished 3rd in the PSAL and will look to improve upon that next season as some talented young golfers will be joining the team.

Softball said goodbye to 10 seniors on Senior Day this spring. Although the team struggled to earn victories, they played good defense throughout the year and showed steady improvement all season long. Scholar Athlete winner Jamie Trinh was one of those seniors honored. Trinh was the team MVP in basketball and earned 1st Team All-League in basketball in the competitive WBAL.

A fourth sport earned CCS playoff recognition as well. The girls swim team qualified in two relays, the 200 Medley and the 400 Freestyle, led by senior Lynn Chang, who captured the WBAL title in the 100 breast stroke. Chang graduates with the league record time in this event and qualified for the CCS meet in this event as well. The relay teams were buoyed by Tiffany Chang, Lynn’s sister, and two stalwart seniors, Fiona Lundie and Beth Low. Boys volleyball finished an up and down season, finishing 3rd in the PSAL. The team didn’t go quietly, though, defeating league champion King’s Academy in their final match of the season. Freshman Brian McEuen led the way for the Eagles, earning 1st Team All-League. Adhir Ravipati earned 2nd team honors, and setter Matt Wong joined Eric Tsai in earning Honorable Mention. Congratulations go to Ravipati, who was named MVP for three Harker teams this year. A 1st team AllLeague selection and team MVP in football, Ravipati continued that trend in basketball as well. He concluded the season as team MVP in volleyball to go along with his 2nd team All-League distinction. In his spare time, Ravipati was able

Baseball wrapped up their season as well, with sophomore Jason Martin selected to the PSAL 1st Team and senior Ben Shapiro given Honorable Mention. Congratulations to Shapiro on being named the Scholar Athlete of the Year. Shapiro quarterbacked the football

team earning All-League recognition, was a sharp shooting guard on the basketball team and anchored the baseball team with his pitching and hitting. Shapiro hopes to continue his athletic career at Middlebury College next fall.

As noted earlier, Dr. Woods was selected by the senior class to address them at Baccalaureate. This was a well-deserved honor for an outstanding teacher and football coach, and a true gentleman, and reinforces again the value of athletics in the high school experience. Is it coincidence that last year, girls’ basketball coach John Near was chosen to speak? In four years, five of the six speakers selected have coached in the US athletic program. This speaks volumes to the importance and relevance of athletics at Harker. So that is the past – what lies ahead? Harker is pleased to introduce water polo as an interscholastic sport beginning next year. Former UCLA water polo standout David Towle will serve as coach for the new programs that will compete in the fall. Lacrosse is also being considered as an athletic offering, so watch for news of that as well. Finally, we would like to formally welcome new US Athletic Director Dan Molin. Molin is currently the AD at St. Anthony’s School in Maui, Hawaii. He brings a wealth of knowledge, experience and passion to the position, and is well suited to direct the program to great success and accomplishment. Here’s to all of the coaches and athletes for another wonderful year! —Jack Bither, US Athletic Director




Harker Establishes Chapter of Cum Laude Society Harker was recently admitted as a chapter of the National Cum Laude Society, a prestigious honor that indicates a school’s proficiency and dedication to superior scholastic achievement. The Harker chapter was established, and its charter members inducted, in April by Tom Hudnut, head of school of HarvardWestlake School in North Hollywood, and Cum Laude regent for the western United States. Hudnut visited Harker in October, 2004 and, based on his recommendation, Harker was admitted by a unanimous vote at the national Cum Laude Convention in November. Samantha Fang, Gr. 11, was selected as the Harker chapter’s first president, with Dean of Studies Heather Blair serving as the group’s secretary. Harker’s charter members are: Fang, Blair, US Division Head Richard Hartzell, US math teacher and dept. chair Joanne Mason, Harker alumni parent Susan Lee, Anjali Karuna ’02, Julia Gitis ’03 and Joshua Zloof ’04. The inductees from the class of 2005 are: Ilya Arbatman, Janine Carpenter, Alexandra GarrSchultz, Jerry Hong, Emily Hsi, Alexander Hsu, Nina Joshi, Salman Kothari, Mason Liang, Fiona Lundie, Alan Malek, Adrick McIlroy, Rachel Newman, Kathy Peng, Gregory Perkins, Lev Pisarsky, Aleksandr Segal, Roberta Wolfson, Joel Wright and Justin Wu. The class of 2006 Cum Laude inductees are: Fang, Sarah Fingerhood, Lauren Gutstein, Michael Hammersley, Yi Sun, Amira Valliani and Hann-Shuin Yew.

Living History Visits Harker Classes Students in the US history classes of Carol Zink and Donna Gilbert were treated to a special honor May 31 and June 3, respectively, when Mary Dale, mother of US history teacher Dr. Ruth Meyer, visited their classes to provide a


first-hand account of living in Europe during World War II. Dale was a schoolgirl in Coventry, England during the time of war. Her visit began with Harker students listing what they ate the day before; then they compared their diets to those of English children during food rationing in 1941. “She talked to the students about air raid drills, food rationing and what it was like growing up during such difficult conditions,” said Meyer. Both Zink and Gilbert’s classes covered the Second World War, and Zink said, “It was fascinating for us to hear history brought to life by someone who lived through events we studied!”

Happy Birthday, Mr. Shakespeare! Gr. 12 students taking US English teacher Marc Hufnagl’s Shakespeare elective and

Honors English II classes created birthday cards to commemorate the 441st birthday of William Shakespeare. “The students were encouraged to write a sonnet in Shakespearean form, but they could deviate from the form if they chose,” explained Hufnagl. The cards were on display in the main hallway during late April and early May.

New Girls’ Club Hosts Assembly The US Girls for a Change Club hosted its first assembly and peer group meeting on Apr. 27, in cooperation with the Support Network for Battered Women and Teen Program Coordinators. Girls for a Change is a new US club

started this year by Stephanie Tung, Gr. 12, and advised by Dean of Studies Heather Blair. The group discusses issues that relate to female inequality. “We talk about things that make our blood boil,” laughed Tung. The other charter members of the group are Meghana Komati, Linda Mohammadian, Serena Liou and Tavishi Agrawal, all Gr. 12.

“Nor-Cal” senate, and freshman Deepa Ramakrishnan was appointed chief of staff for the region where she will work with the incoming mayor. Of joining the ranks of JSA leadership, Ramakrishnan said, “I’ve enjoyed being a part of JSA because the opportunity it gives students to share their views is really inspiring. I can’t wait to get more involved.”

Harker Makes Splash At JSA Conference

National Honor Society

The Harker chapter of the Junior State of America (JSA) returned from the 2005 Spring State Convention firmly established as one of the leading delegations in the state of California and the Golden Gate Region. Harker, which already held key positions in the regional JSA leadership, gained even higher positions in the state leadership. Tara Chandra, Gr. 11, who formerly held the position of mayor in the Golden Gate Region, was elected speaker of the assembly for the state of California. Former Golden Gate Region Chief of Staff Natasha Sarin, Gr. 10, was elected as the state’s lieutenant governor. “We are very excited to have Tara and Natasha as part of the leadership team for the state. They are proven hard workers who are highly effective, pleasant to work with, and inspirational to the other students.” said JSA Program Director David Beiser. “It is uncommon for one school to provide the leadership in two of the three statewide elected offices,” added JSA advisor Dan Hudkins, referring to the statewide positions of governor, lieutenant governor and speaker of the assembly. “It usually only happens when a large school brings a large delegation and dominates the convention,” added Hudkins. He explained that, though Harker took its largest delegation ever, the 74 Harker students were only the third-largest delegation, and represented only ten percent of the JSA voters. In the Golden Gate Region, junior Amira Valliani was reelected to the

The Harker chapter of the National Honor Society (NHS) honored 44 new members at the annual NHS induction ceremony. This year’s ceremony was decidedly more formal, taking place in a larger venue, with new members awarded NHS pins to honor their induction. The new inductees joined the 55 returning members of the Harker chapter. Since 1921, the NHS has been one of the nation’s premier organizations in recognizing outstanding high school students who have demonstrated excellence in the areas of scholarship, leadership, service and character. Congratulations to the new NHS members!

New Japan Exchange A brand-new US exchange trip has been added for the summer of 2005 for US Japanese language classes. A delegation of 11 Harker students and their chaperones will travel to Japan to visit Harker’s sister-school, The Tamagawa Gakuen School of Tamagawa, Japan from June 11 – 21. Representing Harker on this inaugural trip will be:

Amy Huang, Ira Patnaik, Eric Tzeng, Wilson Huang, Killy Biesele, Timothy Wan, Alyssa Zachariah, Gr. 11; Andrew Fandrianto, Samuel Douglas, Gr. 10; Grace Hudkins, Emily Chow, Gr. 9. Harker News — June 05



Speech & Debate Society Finishes Fantastic Year At the Tournament of Champions (TOC) event held Apr. 30-May 1, Alex Hsu, Gr. 12, posted a fine record of 4-3 throughout the tournament. The TOC is an event organized for the top debaters from that year.

The Harker Speech and Debate Society celebrated an eventful end to an outstanding year. The team gave an impressive performance at the Woodward Academy tournament Apr. 2-3. Anuj Kamdar, Gr. 9, earned a LincolnDouglas Speaker Award, ranking as the event’s 3rd speaker, as did Catherine Chiu, Gr. 9, ranking as the 6th speaker. Tatsu Hashimoto, Gr. 10, earned a Policy Speaker Recognition at the event. Chiu, along with Eugenia Sorotokin and Frank Wang, both Gr. 9, also advanced to the field of 16 debaters in the Lincoln-Douglas Debate competition.

TOC Director Dr. J.W. Patterson recently announced that the Harker debate tournament – which was renamed this year in honor of Howard and Diana Nichols as The Howard and Diana Nichols Invitational Debate Tournament – will be elevated next year to the status of an official TOC qualifying tournament at the finals level in both Policy and Lincoln-Douglas debate formats.

Harker debaters capped their year with the 7th annual Harker Speech and Debate Society Award Ceremony. The more than 100 members of the debate team, and scores of family and friends were on hand to watch the presentation of year-end awards, and the traditional reading of “Senior Wills” by Hsu, Varoon Bhagat, Lynn Chang, Nilay Gandhi, Jerry Hong, Sherwin Jiang, Arjun Naskar, and Linda Yen. The team and coach Matthew Brandstetter paid a special tribute to Howard and Diana Nichols for their dedication to establishing a top-

flight debate program at Harker. Other Harker administrators and staff to whom the students paid special thanks during the ceremony for their support throughout the year were Nancy Reiley, Joe Gill, Richard Hartzell, Kevin Williamson and Chris Nikoloff. Congratulations to the Harker Speech and Debate Society for another outstanding campaign!

Sixth Edition of HELM Quickly Sold Out! A diverse collection of students and talents converged to create the sixth edition of HELM (Harker’s Eclectic Literary Magazine). The studentmanaged and produced booklet featured 75 pages of prose, poetry and photography submitted by Harker students, and quickly sold out upon its release. HELM editor-in-chief Kamilla Khaydarov, Gr. 12, said, “It was a weird, eccentric thing that came together beautifully in the end.” The rest of the HELM staff was: Editors – Harker News — June 05

Genna Erlikhman, Serena Liou, Casey Near, Ariane Vartanian and Linda Yen. Contributors – Ilya Arbatman, Arjun Banerjee, Tara Chandra, Cheryl Chiu, Boris Federov, Julia Havard, Chistine Hsueh, Emily Isaacs, Amit Jain, Molly Newman, Vani Pyda, Kit Schimandle, Siobhan Stevenson, Esther Teplitsky, Ruth Tepper, Natalie Torban, VyVy Trinh, Nina Vyedin, Roberta Wolfson, Allison Wong and HannShuin Yew.

The US Photography Club held a photo sale in Manzanita Hall May 11, offering their best photographs for sale, with proceeds going toward future club activities.




New Student Government Officers Elected

Student government is pleased to introduce the Harker community to the newly elected 2005-2006 officers. The Class of ’09 (Class Dean: Cheryl Cavanaugh) will hold their elections in the fall. Congratulations to the following leaders: Associated Student Body Officers (Student Body Dean: Kevin Williamson): President – Amit Mukherjee, Vice-President – Sriram Prakash, Secretary – Casey Near, Treasurer – Rupan Bose Class of ’06 (Class Dean: Lisa Radice): President – Jeff Le, Vice-President – Arjun Banerjee, Secretary – Candace Chang, Treasurer – Shawn Huda Class of ’07 (Interim Class Dean: Susana Hartzell): President – Adnan Haque, Vice-President – Garrett Brooks, Secretary – Simren Kohli, Treasurer – Lucille Hu Class of ’08 (Class Dean: Marc Hufnagl): President – Tiffany Liou, VicePresident – Denaly Chen, Secretary – Robyn Chan, Treasurer – Neil Shah

Senator Liaisons Between Clubs, ASB This year, ASB Vice President Amira Valliani, Gr. 11, reformed the Upper School Senate, an unofficial student government body created last year to serve as a liaison between US clubs and the ASB. In its previous form, the Senate had nearly forty members serving as direct representatives from each club. Valliani helped to streamline the Senate by creating a fivemember body, with each member representing a number of US clubs. “Senate members met with US clubs periodically, asking them what they needed from the student council,” said Valliani. “We also asked the students what they wanted out of their clubs, so we could assist on both ends.” Prompted by Valliani, the Judiciary Committee selected the at-large senators based on applications detailing the experience and extracurricular activities of the prospective senators, and how they planned to contribute to the Senate. Senator Casey Blair, Gr. 11, said, “The effectiveness of the Senate has grown much faster than what we hoped for. We have been able to deal with a variety of issues

in a very short time.” Blair added, “We’re hoping to have even more success next year.” Many thanks to the members of this past year’s Senate for their contributions to the school: Valliani, Blair, Teddy Lee, Gr. 11, Kunal Gupte, Gr. 10, Ashley Morishige, Gr. 10, and Natasha Wu, Gr. 9.

Smack Down Tourney Alan Quach, Gr. 10, successfully defended his title as the Smack Down Ping-Pong Tournament Champion on Apr. 7. For his effor ts, Quach won a Jamba Juice gift cer tificate and earned 1,000 spirit points for the sophomore class. In the finals, Quach defeated Sherwin Jiang, Gr. 12, who earned 750 spirit points for his class. Rajiv Ragu, Gr. 9, and Tanuj Thapliyal, Gr. 11, earned 500 and 250 points for their classes, respectively. In the doubles tournament, the team of US math teacher Evan Barth and Lucas Motro, Gr. 10, defeated US math teacher Le Nguyen and Nima Taheri, Gr. 12. Congratulations to all the participants!

kudos! ■ Harker US students made an outstanding showing at the California Northern Regional Scholastic Chess Championships held Apr. 15-17 at the San Jose Convention Center. In the High School Varsity Championship Division, Kevin Hwa, Gr. 9, won third place individually and helped Harker earn seventh place overall in the division. In the High School Junior Varsity Division, Alex Fandrianto, Gr. 9, earned second place in the individual competition, helping the Harker team finish fourth in the JV division.

tion had over 500 entrants, and Sun finished 21st among the 164 competitors in the invitation-only Gold Division. The USACO, which invites gifted students from all over the world, is designed to cultivate interest in computer programming among pre-college students and recognize those who are outstanding performers. In addition, Sun’s per formance earned him an invitation to the USAIO, the training camp for the Computing Olympiad team, at Colorado College in Denver in early June.

■ Two Harker sophomores placed in the top ten in their respective events at the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) California State Leadership Conference, held in Burlingame Apr. 28 – May 1. Anjali Menon earned 1st place in the state in the Public Speaking event for her speech regarding how the United States can continue to hold a leading role in international business, and how FBLA helps prepare students to contribute to the nation’s success. Chris Xiao earned high honors in two categories: 7th place in International Business and 10th in Marketing.

■ Junior Hann Yew recently placed 12th in the University of Toronto National Biology Competition, qualifying to attend the Canadian Biology Olympiad Study Camp in April and to try out for the 2006 Canadian International Biology Olympiad Team. Over 6,300 students took par t in the national competition (more than par ticipated in the U.S. Biology Olympiad).

■ Yi Sun, Gr. 11, was recently accepted into the Research Science Institute (RSI) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The highly selective and intensive six-week summer program only accepts approximately 75 high school students internationally each year. Students participate in a rigorous academic program that emphasizes advanced theory and research in mathematics, the sciences and engineering, and attend college-level classes taught by distinguished professors. Sun was also one of the top scorers at the United States of America Computing Olympiad (USACO) in April. This year’s competi-


■ Alex Segal, Gr. 12, was recently selected as a National Scholar Award recipient by the National Society of High School Scholars. Segal was one of just 19 students nationwide to earn the award. Winners were selected based on the strength of their academic record, leadership activities, community service, educators’ recommendations and personal essay. ■ Jerry Hong, Gr. 12, was recently presented the Outstanding High School Mathematician Award by the Santa Clara Valley Mathematics Association (SCVMA). The award was given to only six students in Santa Clara Valley for the 2004-05 school year. Kudos to all!

Harker News — June 05

Recent Alums Provide Seniors Glimpse of Future

Senior Men Show Their Muscle in Calendar!

Harker alumni from the classes of ’03 and ’04 met with graduating seniors on May 18, a few days before this year’s graduation ceremony, to provide some first-hand advice on college life. The alumni panel, appropriately titled “What I Wish I Knew BEFORE I Went to College,” fielded questions about academics, social life, homesickness, health issues and counseling resources in a session that went overtime in the FDR. The feedback from seniors was outstanding, and it appears that the panel will become a tradition, with seniors and alumni already asking to be on it next year! Former student body president Maya Hey (’04) organized the program, along with Director of College Counseling Sandy Padgett. Hey and her fellow alums gave up a day of their summer vacations to help inform the graduating class about what awaits them next year in college. “Overall I feel we successfully gave a glimpse of college life from the perspective of a Harker student,” said Hey, who will also be working in Harker’s performing arts department this summer. Thanks to all the panelists for continuing to contribute to the Harker community: class of ’03: Gabby DeMers, Maheen Kaleem, Christina Ratazzi, Jessica Travis; class of ’04: Hey, Meghan Desale, Nikhil Deshmukh, Julia Gitis, Courtney Johnson, Matt Jones, Kathryn Lee, Jennifer Lin.

As part of a “Memories Package” created for the Class of 2005 by the Senior Class Council, a group of Gr. 12 guys created the Senior Guys’ Illustrated Calendar, a hilarious parody of Sports Illustrated’s annual swimsuit calendar. Sixteen seniors lent their modeling talents to the calendar. Extra calendars were available for purchase for the rest of the US students. Nima Taheri, Gr. 12, a member of the Senior Class Council and one of the featured models, said, “We just thought it would be fun, and the rest of the students will have something to remember us by.” Extra copies may be available – contact the bookstore at if interested.

Senior Mentor Program Assists Freshmen The Senior Mentor Program, in just its second year of operation, has already become a valuable tool in acclimating freshmen to high school life, and preparing them for what lies ahead. Harker members of the National Honor Society (NHS) served as mentors, with each Gr. 12 mentor assigned to a Gr. 9 advisory group. Assistant Head of School Jennifer Gargano said, “Prior to each of the meetings with the advisory groups, the seniors met with [US Dean of Students] Kevin Williamson and me to discuss the topic for the upcoming session.” At the meetings, the seniors would discuss their own experiences as freshmen, things they would have done differently, and things they were glad they did. “Being NHS members, the senior mentors have dealt a lot with balancing a rigorous academic load while being involved in the community, and were able to give the freshmen advice on how to do this effectively, as well as advise them when the freshmen were choosing their schedules for next year,” said Gargano. US English teacher and Gr. 9 Dean Marc Hufnagl said, “Many times the freshmen were more comfortable asking a senior peer a question about social and academic issues than they were asking the adviser.” Both Gargano and Hufnagl also noted the community-building aspect of the mentor program. “The program fosters a sense of community; to have a ‘big brother’ or ‘big sister’ visit once a month afforded opportunities for mutual exchange and sharing that led to a comfortable family atmosphere,” said Hufnagl. This year’s Senior Mentors were: Katie Ball, Ilya Arbatman, Asmita Jina, Jerry Hong, Kevin Busch, Shephalie Lahri, Ariana Vergara, Estelle Charlu, Mike Nguyen, Sam Singh, Erika Gudmundson, Yagmur Ilgen, Salman Kothari, Arjun Naskar, Emily Hsi, Anshu Das, Sonia Rastogi, Nilay Gandhi, Sheena Tomar, and Varoon Bhagat. Harker News — June 05

Harker Archives


Annual Juniors’ Race for the Harker Cup! 136 students and 16 faculty advisers (and 14 boats!) participated in the 4th annual race for the Harker Cup, the annual junior class trip that concludes with a regatta race at the Pacific Yachting

Kevin Williamson - all photos

Terry Walsh - all photos


& Sailing Club in Santa Cruz. Juniors and their advisers teamed-up for the event, which is a part of the US advisory program. Students learned basic sailing terminology and technique in the morning, then put what they learned to use during the afternoon race. Working five or six to a boat, students and faculty rotated between the jobs of steering the boat, working the sheets and setting the sails, all under the guidance of the boat’s captain. The average time for completion of the race was approximately 75 minutes, with the best time being just under one hour. “Our goals are to improve communication skills, to practice working together as a team, and to share a unique experience with peers and mentors outside of the classroom,” said Dean of Students Kevin Williamson. “It’s also a fun and exciting way to bring the junior year to a close,” he added. The following names will be engraved on the silver Harker Cup in Dobbins Hall as this year’s winners:

May 16th winners – Kenny Lee, Apik Zorian, Rami Antoun, Swathi Bhuma, Mariah Bush and John Hawley aboard the Mungo Jerry; May 17th Winners – Lauren Gutstein, Timothy Ho, Joshua Karnes, Jeffrey Le and Carlynn Keilty aboard the Corsair.




Class of ’05 Makes Senior Trip “Unforgettable”

Chris Daren - all photos

Lenka Pelakova - student

All the members of the senior class traveled to the Hotel del Coronado in San Diego May 15–17 for the 4th annual senior class trip, enjoying surfing, biking and relaxing during the day, and a special sunset bonfire on the beach one night. The “Del” provided some special surprises for the Harker visitors, including a private pool party and a private dance. “The seniors made the trip an unforgettable experience,” said US Division Head Richard Hartzell. “They knew how to have fun, but they also knew how deport themselves at a world class resort. They have really solidified the senior trip tradition. I’ll miss them!”

Dancing on the Rooftop – a Prom to Remember

Chris Daren - both photos

Over 260 students enjoyed a magnificent prom night on Fri., May 13, at the Fourth Street Summit Center in downtown San Jose. Attendees partied the night away while “Dancing on the Rooftop,” this year’s theme. “The fantastic dinner was catered by the Fairmont Hotel, and the evening was a huge success,” said US activity coordinator Chris Daren. Many thanks and congratulations go to Daren and the US Spirit Club for organizing and planning a night to remember.


Emily Chow

Jocelyn Ko

US Spring Spirit Week put an exciting cap on a great year of spirit activities. School passion ran wild and rivalry was intense during the class competitions, the “Harker Idol” talent contest and the annual powder puff football game. The seniors went out with a bang by winning the final competition at the spirit week rally. Victory in the overall class competition for the year went to the class of 2006. English teacher John Heyes repeated this year as winner of the “Best Twin” award during the “Twin Dress” activity, dressing to match the personal style of student “twin” Robert Lougheed Lowe, Gr. 10. “Spring Spirit Week was a huge success,” said US activity director Chris Daren. “All the classes dressed up in droves, and the Harker Idol performances at the rally were great!”

Matt Wong

US Students Show Their Spirit

Harker News — June 05



Faculty Honors, Bids Farewell to Class of 2005 May 19 was a full day of congratulations and celebration, beginning with the final awards assembly. Each department presented awards of excellence to students in each grade level, and Richard Hartzell

an especially meaningful final farewell, acknowledging that it is his and Diana’s farewell as well as the graduates’. Thank you to Richard Frazier’s String Orchestra and Susan Nace’s Cantilena, who put the finishing touches on the evening with their beautiful chamber music. Attendees at both events had time to enjoy the dozens of senior collages hanging on the walls of the gym. These large framed tributes, created by the families of each graduate every year, include personal photos, mementoes and sentiments that capture special moments from each graduate’s school years.

presented National Merit Scholarships and college book awards. Student body awards recognized outstanding service to the school and the community, and the evening ending with the presentation of the Donald Nichols Excellence in Leadership and President’s Distinguished Student Awards. Downbeat, the Dance Troupe and the Jazz Band added a festive note to the occasion. Only a few hours later, the class of 2005, their parents, the administration, faculty and juniors celebrated Baccalaureate. In keeping with tradition, the seniors chose the faculty keynote speakers – two this year, English teacher Cheryl Cavanaugh and biology teacher and football coach Tim Woods. Cavanaugh and Woods each gave heartfelt speeches which not only offered some advice, but which thanked the class for the affection, hard work and professional satisfaction they had given to these two fine teachers. Salutatorian Joel Wright brought chuckles and a few nostalgic sighs as he reflected on his class’s future. Howard Nichols gave Harker News — June 05




ming 5th At press time the following inco as Bucknall graders were selected to serve 5-06: 200 for ers offic ncil Student Cou ident – President – Jenny Chen; Vice Pres etar y Secr rding Reco ; pine Dele Tiphaine ioner – – Connie Cheng; Spirit Commiss tor – Ragini Bobby Kahlon; Service Coordina many and ons Bhattacharya. Congratulati willtheir for ers lead g youn e thes thanks to ity! mun com ol ingness to serve their scho

Students and parents alike might enjoy finding some great summer reading materials through one of the many databases offered through the Harker library. NoveList and NoveList K-8, award-winning and well-respected readers’ advisory resources used extensively throughout the US and Canada, have recently enhanced their services for fiction readers. Their databases now offer a tabbed interface for easier navigation and access to their many distinctive features, which include enhanced series searches, popularity sorting features and phonetic search help in case you can’t remember the exact spelling of the author or title. “NoveList is especially helpful for finding books with similar plots, characters, themes and settings for all ages,” said library director Enid Davis. Visit the parent section of Harker’s Web site for the list of databases and passwords. Happy reading!

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The Harker News is published nine times per year by the Harker Office of Communications. Current and archived issues are also available on the Parent Home Page (PHP) on the Harker Web site at Editor: Pam Dickinson; Production: Crystal Boyd, Blue Heron Design Group; Photos: Mark Tantrum, unless noted; Contributors: Ali Abdollahi, Cathy Snider, Jaja Hsuan, Nick Gassmann, Steven Wong; Printing: Harker Copy Shop; Mailing Coordinator: Jerusha Hew Len.


The Harker School is a K-12 independent, co-ed, college-prep school.

Grades K-6: 4600 Bucknall Rd., San Jose CA 95130 Phone 408.871.4600 • Fax 408.871.4320 Grades 7-12: 500 Saratoga Ave., San Jose CA 95129 Phone 408.249.2510 • Fax 408.984.2325

Harker believes that all persons are entitled to equal employment opportunity and does not discriminate against its employees or applicants because of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions), national origin, ancestry, age (over 40), marital status, political affiliations, physical or mental disability, medical condition, sexual orientation, or any other basis protected by state or federal laws, local law or ordinance. Harker News — June 05

Profile for The Harker School

2005 June Harker News  

2005 June Harker News