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October 2007

Est. 1893 • K-12 College Prep

er Harkmers Sum


s p e c i a l

r e p o r t

When the school year winds down, summer heats up for Harker students, faculty and staff! Enjoy this special Harker Summers supplement that recaps just some of the interesting adventures and projects undertaken by our inquisitive, enthusiastic community.

f r o m

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Student Summers

Faculty Summers

Summer is a time when our teachers challenge themselves, try new things and find ways to bring fresh ideas to their classrooms!

Summer @ Harker

Closer to home, our robust summer offerings right here at Harker – our K-8 Summer Program, US Summer Institute and English Language Institute – drew students from near and far to learn, make friends and have a blast!

S c h o o l

Student Summer Internships and Trips n Gwynnie Vernon, Gr. 12 Olio Restaurant

immersion class.) Although I’d read numerous books on how difficult being a chef would be, I didn’t quite grasp how much of a commitment the job is. Exhausting as it was, I had an amazing time. Apprenticing at Olio has definitely convinced me that even though it’s not exactly the glamorous career portrayed on the Food Network, there’s nowhere that I’m happier than the kitchen. I would give other students the following advice: Do something you love. There’s no point pursuing something you don’t have an interest or a passion for. Learn something that you can actually apply to what you want to do in life (hopefully, a career that will make you happy). n Nitasha Ranganath, Gr. 12 Silicon Valley Capital Partners

Harker US students interned at an amazing range of businesses and learned much about possible careers – and about themselves!

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I apprenticed at Olio, a Mediterranean/North African restaurant in downtown Campbell. I worked with Olio’s pastry chef, as well as on salads and appetizers. I learned how to make and plate the desserts (decorating with sauces and garnishes), and make focaccia. I also learned various other prep jobs including macerating strawberries and different knife cuts. After learning that Olio’s executive chef went to the Culinary Institute of America (my current dream school), I went there for dinner. I was really impressed, especially after talking to Chef Thomas, and after I came back by myself for a second time, he offered me the opportunity to apprentice. I thought I knew so much before I went in and then, of course, I got there and realized how much I didn’t know. I can follow a recipe easily enough, and once I get all the techniques down and study the chemistry of

“ I learned I can survive on little sleep and pick up languages quite quickly.

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— Gwynnie Vernon, Gr. 12

food more, I’ll be able to go much farther with my skills. I learned I can survive on very little sleep and pick up languages quite quickly. (In addition to my apprenticeship, I took a three-week Swahili

This summer I was an intern at Silicon Valley Capital Partners, a wealth management group. I conducted market research, wrote an employee handbook, revised the company Web site and assisted in day-to-day operations. I learned that business is a very, very broad field! It is possible to pursue business, despite disliking some facets, because of its diverse nature. I would give other students the following advice: Use an internship to test the waters of an occupation you are considering. Internships help narrow down possibilities. n Rachel Fong, Gr. 12 SUMMIT (Stanford University Medical Media and Information Technologies) As a summer intern, I developed a virtual reality dynamic-feedback intracorporeal suturing trainer on an open-source simulation platform called SPRING with two other high school interns. My focus was on programming the infrastructure (physics, object interactions and so on). At first I thought I was completely unprepared because we were working in C++, which I had never used before, and the code base we were using was much larger than anything I had previously worked with. However, I already knew Java, which is nearly identical to C++, and I learned how to use professional development tools to compensate for the complexity of the application. My experience with SPRING taught me that software development is incredibly frustrating. I don’t think I could pursue a career in software development, although I’m still interested in many other aspects of computer science. I would give other students the following advice: To find an internship, put together a resume, then ask everyone you know and solicit random professors. However, don’t rule out summer learn-



ing programs; some may be more intellectually valuable than internships. n Sarah Payne, Gr. 11 Don Buchwald & Associates Inc. I was an intern in the literary department at Don Buchwald & Associates. My duties included handling submission letters, answering phones, writing script coverage and assisting the agent. I did not really know what to expect going into the internship. I learned that working hard – and working quickly – really pays off. When (fellow Harker student) Emily (Chow) and I would complete a task efficiently, our boss was always very impressed. By working for an agency, I learned not only about that business, but also about the entire entertainment business. Watching the agents interact with producers, directors, writers and actors allowed to me get a feel for “Hollywood,” including the good and the not-so-glamorous sides of the business. I have worked for my parents’ company for many summers, and I have had to do “boring work” like stuffing envelopes and making copies. I didn’t think my internship at DBA would include those tasks, but I quickly learned that every business has these tasks and that they are important. I would give other students the following advice: The best way to find an internship is to use the connections you have. I found this internship through my journalism adviser. Talking to teachers, parents and coaches is much more likely to get you an internship than searching Google for “high school internships.”

“ The best way to find an internship is to use the connections you have.

— Sarah Payne, Gr. 11 n Tiffany Yu, Gr. 12 Academic Summer Day Camp at Sacred Heart Community Service I interned/volunteered for three-and-half weeks as a math tutor at the Academic Summer Day Camp at Sacred Heart Community Service. I also helped the math teacher with games and activities. Initially, I was told that these kids would not be “bright.” However, when I arrived at Sacred Heart, I realized it was not that the kids were not smart, but rather that their learning habits and influences caused them to be slower academically. Through this, I received first-hand experience about public school education. Although I never thought that teaching was an easy job, I definitely was not prepared to feel as frustrated at myself for not being able to get a concept across to a bright young kid. I never knew I had so much patience to help teach Special Ed kids how to add and subtract. I have never really thought about teaching as a career, but after this valu-

able hands-on experience, I would really love to continue volunteering as a tutor/teacher in poorer areas. I would give other students the following advice: Even though I knew that teaching would most likely not be in my future plans, I chose to tutor at Sacred Heart because service is extremely important to me. Because of our busy schedules at Harker, I know it is difficult to squeeze in quality community-service time. I would advise underclassmen to not focus on finding an internship because it looks “flashy” on your resume. Pursue what you love and what you believe would be the best way to spend a quality summer. n Divya Mandava, Gr. 12 Devnar Foundation for the Blind I was a kindergarten and first-grade English teacher at the Devnar Foundation for the Blind in India. I had to teach my own classes without a syllabus or any help. I also recorded the 10th-grade textbooks onto my laptop and made CDs of them for the students to listen to. At the beginning I was really nervous because I was given so much responsibility; but after a couple of days, I became accustomed to the atmosphere and I grew to absolutely love the place. I learned that if you want to become a teacher, you need a loud voice and a lot of patience. I doubt I will pursue this career, but it was an experience to remember. Working with children leaves you feeling extremely satisfied, and you tend to forget all your worries when you’re around them. I would give other students the following advice: Make sure you do something that you know you will enjoy, because you will only retain memories and experiences from something that interests you. You do not necessarily have to be certain that you are going to pursue that career, but make sure you know why you are doing the internship.

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I learned that if you want to become a teacher, you need a loud voice and a lot of patience.

— Divya Mandava, Gr. 12 n Omar Haque, Gr. 11 Maxim Integrated Products Inc. I was an intern in the marketing department at Maxim Integrated Products. I worked on data spreadsheets of products and samples. I also helped organize the workplace. I felt prepared because Harker provided me with the tools of persistence and curiosity. These two assets assisted me in completing my projects efficiently. I learned I can sit in a cubicle for long hours working behind a computer without becoming bored. I learned what working in the business world is like. Having experience gives me a better picture of what lies

ahead if I decide to pursue a career in this field. I would give other students the following advice: Work somewhere that gives you experience in the fields that interest you. n Elissa Patel, Gr. 12 Soundtek Studios I went to Soundtek Studios to co-write and record my own songs. I chose the beat for the music, wrote lyrics and created melodies for each piece. I was so nervous the first day. I walked into the studio with five lines written for a song and a melody to go along with it. But as I learned more about the process, I became more comfortable in the studio environment and was able to branch out vocally and stylistically. It was difficult at times, especially while experiencing writer’s block. When in the studio, I would often not like how I sounded. So, we would have many takes of the same part of the song. But in the end, it all came together perfectly. I learned that I really love music and writing, and that I truly hope to pursue this passion for singing past high school. I know that I want to continue singing as a pastime. I feel I could potentially do something related to the advertising/marketing/business side of music. I would give other students the following advice: I was very hesitant taking my singing hobby to the next level by recording a demo. But if you love something, just go for it. What is there to lose? You’re young. Try everything. It can’t hurt. n Laura Holford, Gr. 12 Pizookie Project Technically speaking, I interned in the accounts payable department at a manufacturing company in Washington State. But really, I worked on the Pizookie Project, which raises funds for the American Cancer Society. (I play the drums in the band The Pizookies.) During my lunch hour and as soon as I got off work, I was talking to reporters, sending press releases, writing drum parts for our songs, getting the word out, designing the CD booklet and raising money. When I got home at the beginning of August, I made batches of cookie dough to freeze and bake later to sell at Relay for Life. I continued to get our project known by putting up flyers, handing out business cards and giving away free cookies. We had so much to do, getting ready for our album release party Aug. 10 and the Relay for Life the following day. As far as the logistical aspect of the job (keeping track of the money we’ve made, shipping orders, etc.), I felt well-prepared from my accounting job. As far as the music aspect, it really pushed me a lot. I have very little music experience, so to be working on a project centered on music was difficult. Preparing to record a whole album was difficult, especially since I didn’t have a drum set all summer. But in the end, I’m so glad I did it because it pushed my boundaries and I learned so much in the process and, ultimately, I became a better musician. I learned youth have the opportunity and the capacity to make the world a better place ...continued on page 4 Harker News — October 07

Seniors Explore Costa Rica’s Rich Biodiversity

Students Travel to Japan

While most students were doing their back-to-school shopping, 14 Harker seniors and two chaperones were doing research in Costa Rica.

In June, 11 students and two chaperones traveled to Japan, where they spent 12 days practicing Japanese and soaking up the culture. The students, who are studying various levels of the language, stayed with host families for three nights.

In August, US science teachers Mark Brada and Kate Schafer led the group on a natural history tour of the country. The trip was conceived by science department chair Anita Chetty as a way to expose students to Costa Rica’s incredible biodiversity. The following students participated: Denaly Chen, Melissa Chen, Victor Chen, Rachel Hammersley, Kevin Hwa, Jasmyn Johal, Charisma Kaushik, Tiffany Lai, Brian McEuen, Ankur Patel, Elissa Patel, Ranjita Raghavan, Ankur Sharma and Natasha Wu. The trip had four major stops. The first was INBioParque, a nonprofit organization that promotes an awareness of the value of biodiversity. The group toured the organization’s insect collection and learned how the pharmacological and cosmetic applications of different species are investigated. “We only had a small glance at the more than 3 million insects that have been collected by INBio, but what we saw was simply incredible,” Brada said. The second stop was La Selva Biological Station, one of the most important sites in the world for research on tropical rain forests, where students worked on various research projects. The third stop was near Tortuguero National Park, where students helped research assistants from the Caribbean Conservation Corps tag and measure green sea turtles that lay their eggs on the beaches of Costa Rica every year. The final stop was the Monteverde Institute, where students were paired with researchers to complete small research projects. Although Monteverde works with several high schools, Harker is the only high school whose students receive one-on-one support from local scientists on their research projects, explained Noemí Danao, executive director of the institute. “Overall it was a fantastic experience,” Brada said. “Each kid’s experience and response varied, but everyone had a good time and I think for a few of the kids it was the experience of a lifetime.”

Students Attend Journalism Workshop in New York

This was the second US trip to Japan and the first that involved a home stay. The group visited Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Hiroshima, Miyajima Island and Nagoya. The following students participated in the trip: Adrienne Wong, Gr. 10; Kelly Chen, Marisa Cheng, Alyssa Donovan, Daniel Hsu, Samantha Ipser, Carolyn Kuo and Kevin Wang, all Gr. 11; and Erika Lee, Grace Liang and Brian Ma, all Gr. 12. US Japanese teacher Masako Onakado organized the trip. She and fellow US Japanese teacher Keiko Irino chaperoned. “Going to Japan and staying with a host family enabled me to learn that different cultures may be different on the outside, but everyone is still pretty similar on the inside,” Hsu said. In Kyoto, the group stayed at a prestigious temple and attended a morning prayer session, said Onakado. In Osaka, they visited Hagoromo Gakuen, an all-girls school. The group also visited the Peace Memorial Museum in Hiroshima, where students learned about the 1945 atomic bombing of the city. “(This) really made me think about the past and try to understand what happened, what effects it has brought and why our world leaders still have nuclear weapons,” Ma said. Chen added, “I admire the drastic recovery and improvement in the area (since the bombing). Not only has the technology been brought up-to-date with the rest of Japan, but also skyscrapers have been constructed and busy streets have been laid.”

US Students from both the Talon yearbook and Winged Post newspaper staffs traveled to New York this summer to enhance their skills. The first week was spent at the Columbia Scholastic Press Association Summer Journalism Workshop honing writing, design and other publication skills, while the second week was spent on photojournalism projects. Chris Daren and Diana Moss chaperoned. Harker News — October 07



Continued from pg. 2 and to fill it with love. I also learned that I will not pursue a desk job, but something more active that has a positive impact on people and the world. I would give other students the following advice: Do something you love and be creative. Take advantage of your situation. This is one of

so many presentations at school, organizing the information was not difficult. Before the internship started, I wasn’t sure whether I would enjoy working in a business environment, but it turned out that I had great fun and learned a lot. I enjoyed the experience greatly, and I believe it will help me decide whether or not I want to seek a career in this field. Also, I had a fairly good idea that I wanted to go into a business-related environment, so this internship helped me distinguish what areas in business I would be interested in pursuing. I would give other students the following advice: Internships are a great experience that all students can appreciate. Internships don’t have to be math or science related but could deal with anything the student is interested in. Whether it is associated with the arts or sports, internships are a valuable resource that every student should take advantage of. n Catherine Chiu, Gr. 12 High School Summer Science Research Program at Baylor University

I created on the Stanford Network. I was not prepared for this internship; it required a college level knowledge of Perl programming, which I’d never heard of before. I spent the first couple of weeks learning the essentials of Perl and MySQL (database commands). I was surprised to learn that I like to work under pressure. I also learned that there’s so much to do in the field of medicine, virtually anyone with almost any degree (math, biology, chemistry, physics) can help find cures for seemingly incurable diseases. I would give other students the following advice: Do something you think you’ll be interested in. Forget about what you think colleges, parents or teachers will be impressed by, because if you do something that you hate, when people ask you to describe it, chances are, you wouldn’t impress them anyway.

“ I was surprised to learn that I like to work under pressure.


— Shantanu Swaminathan, Gr. 12 n Noel Siqi Duan, Gr. 11 Fashion Designer

the only times in your life that you will not have to worry about your water bill, and will be completely supported by your parents, so this is your chance to do charity work. It is so fulfilling and you learn so much. This is your chance to make the world a better place. n Rohan Shah, Gr. 10 SMART Modular Technologies Inc. This summer, I interned with my cousin at SMART Modular Technologies. We spent one month visiting different areas of the company and interviewing employees about their jobs. We put the info we gathered into a presentation that we gave to the president, CEO and CFO. I felt fairly prepared because I took notes. And, because I have done

“ I wasn’t sure whether

I would enjoy working in a business environment, but it turned out that I had great fun and learned a lot.

— Rohan Shah, Gr. 10 

As a lab researcher, I worked with a third-year Ph.D. student and my professor (Dr. Kevin Pinney) to synthesize a unique selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) intended to maximize the treatment of depression. Having completed AP Chemistry and AP Biology, I easily understood the basics behind my project (reaction protocol, brain physiology, etc.). I learned that being a biochemist requires extreme optimism and patience. More often than not, reactions fail, and I would be right back to square one, which literally could be two or three weeks of work gone to waste. But in the end, the excitement that comes with each successful reaction makes it all worth it. I would give other students the following advice: Summer internships are extremely competitive to get into; don’t feel too bummed if you receive a rejection. n Shantanu Swaminathan, Gr. 12 Stanford Medical Informatics Department, Stanford University My summer project was to integrate records from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and its Canadian counterpart about adverse drug events (instances where prescribed drugs for diseases yielded a negative outcome) into a database

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I was an intern and assistant with Erin Mahoney, a fashion designer in Berkeley. I cut fabric patterns, organized fabric inventory, sorted business receipts, met industry insiders and professionals, organized her design studio, helped with mailings and prepared her clothing to sell in boutiques. At first, I was really nervous because I had no fashion design experience whatsoever; all I had was a desire to learn everything I could about the fashion industry. However, Erin Mahoney was really nice and helpful, and definitely willing to teach me a lot. For example, on our way to the button factory, she taught me about corruption in the fashion industry and the prevalence of sweatshop labor even in high-end designer stores. I learned that even though I don’t want to become a fashion designer, I definitely want to work in the industry as a fashion magazine editor. I learned from the industry professionals I met that it’s a long road to success, but I don’t think I would have it any other way. I hope to continue working and interning in the fashion industry. In fact, as a result of my internship, I was recently hired by as a paid contributing editor and I have freelance fashion writing gigs with a few online and print magazines. It’s definitely exciting to know that hard work will pay off eventually, even if you will have to face disappointment. I would give other students the following advice: You really have to persevere and do as much research as you can to snag your dream internship, and don’t be afraid to contact individuals and companies (politely), even if you’re not sure if they hire interns. I e-mailed and called about 40 fashion designers with no success. Then one day I sent an e-mail to Erin Mahoney and two hours later, I got a call asking if I’d like to come in for

Harker News — October 07

an interview! Not giving up is the most important thing, and you have to be able to look everywhere and try everything to get your internship.

internship that sparks your interests.

is managed. I thought I would be overwhelmed, because I had never worked at a large company. But once I started working, a lot of concepts suddenly made sense. I realized throughout this experience that business, and marketing specifically, is a career I could really imagine myself pursuing. After a few weeks at the company, I felt as if I had been working there for years. I had an amazing time and met some of the best people. Everyone was so hardworking yet knew how to have fun. I would give other students the following advice: If you are feeling overwhelmed at your internship, take someone out to lunch and ask them to explain things you don’t understand. For me, lunches with co-workers, or even just talking to someone at my desk, proved to be the most beneficial way to learn new things.

n Emily Chow, Gr. 12 Don Buchwald & Associates Inc.

n Tara Panu, Gr. 11 ASA Spanish Immersion Program

n Ben Englert, Gr. 12 Ubicom Inc. This summer I interned as a software developer at Ubicom. I developed network protocols and software packages for Ubicom’s StreamEngine 5000 network processors and corresponding device drivers for Windows Vista. Thanks to my general software development knowledge, I only had to spend about a week learning the specifics of Ubicom’s products. I was pleased to discover that I fit in at a cutting-edge software company. I learned that software development is most interesting when your work directly impacts your life or that of the people around you. I would give other students the following advice: Connections are vital. People will not seek you out unless you come highly recommended from someone they trust. Take every opportunity to show people around you that you are intelligent and motivated in your field of choice, because you never know who they know.

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n Rohit Nalamasu, Gr. 12 Stanford University Nanyang Technological University (Singapore) At Stanford University, I served as a reporter, gathering info on the different approaches each group member was taking to create flexible organic electronics. At Nanyang Technological University, I served as researcher of magnetic nanoparticles for the usage of localized cancer treatment. I found out about these internships by e-mailing various professors in these two fields to ask if I could join their teams. I’ve found most professors to be quite open to having a high school student working with them. My education at Harker really helped me understand the work I was doing. Through my experience living alone in Singapore for a month, I learned I am a lot more independent than I thought, and easily got around by bus and train. I learned that the research side of medicine, though very tasking, is also very rewarding. Though I would not like to spend my entire future on the research side of medicine, I am certain I would like to incorporate it into my future plans. I would give other students the following advice: Follow what you truly want to do and pick an

“ Through my experience

living alone in Singapore for a month, I learned I am a lot more independent than I thought. 


— Rohit Nalamasu, Gr. 12 Harker News — October 07

I was an assistant for the head literary agent at Don Buchwald & Associates. I helped answer phones, corresponded with clients, organized files, updated studio production lists and wrote summaries for screenplays and books. The internship was more than I was expecting, but I felt wellprepared. I was able to use my writing and people skills, and my co-workers were always happy to explain things to me if I didn’t understand them. I realized that I could see myself working in the entertainment industry (if I had to) and that the skills I have learned throughout high school (communicating, patience, etc.) will always be important even in the business world. I learned that a job is only fun if the people I work with are fun. Also, it is important as an executive assistant to stay on top of things and be able to tolerate a lot of complaints and needs. I would give other students the following advice: Pick an internship you know you will enjoy or be interested in. Who to ask? Ask your parents to ask their friends. Connections are important; you never know where you will end up finding your internship. When you get your internship, the most important thing is to learn from your experience, regardless of which field it is in. Don’t hesitate to prove that you can do more than they expect because sometimes the company won’t expect much from a high school student. n Karishma Kothari, Gr. 12 Meru Networks I was a marketing and sales intern at Meru Networks. My duties ranged from creating purchase orders to attending sales conferences. Even though I was an intern in the marketing department, I was able to work with almost every department in the company, including engineering and IT. I got to work on the company’s server, help create the company’s intranet, attend several interesting sales meetings, write bios for the company’s Web site and so much more. I definitely felt prepared for the work. For instance, my algebra and writing skills both came in handy. I was surprised at how intuitive a lot of concepts were and how easily I came to understand how a company

This summer I participated in a Spanish immersion home stay program run by ASA in Nerja, Andalucía, at the southern tip of Spain. My friend Tiffany and I stayed with a Spanish family for an entire month, taking Spanish classes at the institution, taking ceramic classes and learning the native dance Sevillana, a form of flamenco. This was an amazing trip. As a result, I greatly improved my Spanish speaking abilities and confidence. One of the best parts about Nerja was being able to walk everywhere – to school, the beach, downtown and other homes within 20 minutes. It helped us get in sync with the local people and surroundings. Communicating with the locals greatly increased my confidence in both my speaking and comprehension skills, and made our talks at home much more effortless. It became second nature to me and, by the end of the trip, I did not have to worry about conjugating verbs or remembering the vocabulary. I learned that the Spanish culture is full of life, and experiencing the love within the families is something I will always cherish. I would recommend this program to anyone who wants to improve their language and learn more about the country and its culture. In

“ I learned that the Span-

ish culture is full of life, and experiencing the love within the families is something I will always cherish.


— Tara Panu, Gr. 11 addition to improving my Spanish tremendously, it taught me more about myself. n Sarah Teplitsky, Gr. 10 Stanford University Department of Global Ecology



I interned at the Stanford University Department of Global Ecology as part of the Stanford Earth Sciences High School Internship program. I did lab work, including grinding plant samples, foil balling and rock washing. Although I do not have a background in ecology, my colleagues taught me a lot, making the work I was doing more understandable. Through my summer experience, I learned that research is strenuous and one must be willing to put in a lot of time. I also learned that global ecology is a very interesting subject, especially now that global warming is a hot topic, so I definitely am considering taking ecology in high school and college. I also learned to analyze data and come to conclusions in the real world. This internship was such an amazing experience and I learned so much about how research actually works. It was so fulfilling to apply knowledge that I learned in school to the work I did in the internship. n Anteneh Daniel, Gr. 11 District Office of Congressman Michael M. Honda As an intern in Congressman Honda’s office, I was responsible for writing letters, filing, data entry and attending events. I felt prepared because the

expectations are the same as Harker. The most surprising thing I learned was that I could give up my summer free time and still have fun working. I learned that congressmen are always busy, not only in Washington, D.C., but also in their districts. The internship was great because there were other interns and everyone was treated the same way – with respect and humility. I would give other students the following advice: Find out about internships in fields that you are thinking about pursuing but do not know much about. n Robyn Chan, Gr. 12 Camp MayMac I volunteered at Camp MayMac, a Christian camp for at-risk inner-city children run by CityTeam Ministries. After two weeks of training, I spent three weeks counseling and working with youth, ages nine to 16. As a counselor, I acted as a mentor and actually lived with the kids in a cabin. I participated in all their camp activities and had discussions with them about their home lives, families and spiritual issues. I’ve wanted to work for CityTeam ever since I heard at church about the work they did serving the poor and homeless. When I contacted them, they told me about May-

Mac. The training sessions prepared me to work with the other staff as a team; however, I was not as prepared as I’d hoped I’d be to deal with the kids’ behavior. Although one could never know what to expect from the campers, it did not take long for me to feel more comfortable with being a counselor. MayMac was an incredible growing experience in that it showed me just how much I could give of myself to those who need it right here in California. I learned how united I could be with people I thought were entirely different from me. As I learned more about the past and home lives of the campers and the other staff, I realized how much I want to continue serving inner city youth and making a difference for them. While I may not pursue this as a career, learning about the societal problems that face at-risk children and their families (gangs, absent parents) has opened me to future opportunities that involve working with them. Every day at MayMac was a learning experience that has changed how I see others and myself. I would give other students the following advice: Look for an internship or volunteer opportunity that you’re truly interested in, not just one that you think will look good to others. Although an opportunity may seem difficult or risky, it could really stretch you.

Teacher Summers and Trips n Susan Nace, US music teacher, attended The San Francisco Early Music Society’s Baroque Workshop and sang Febo (Apollo) in a concert version of Caldara’s opera “Dafne” with a Baroque orchestra of period instruments. “I learned to dance a Baroque minuet and learned about Baroque gesture. Study of Music students will play with Baroque gesture and dance the Baroque minuet this year,” Nace said. n Elizabeth Saltos, MS art teacher, worked on art installations at Harker. “In the first four-week session we started an outdoor sculptural collaboration, which hopefully you will see on the grounds of Blackford campus. It is called ‘In Situ,’ for site-specific. Margie Harris, a substitute teacher, gave me a large number of gourds. In the summer we started cleaning, painting and sealing for protection from the elements. We will finish the collaboration in the first weeks of regular classes and have it installed for the Harker Family Picnic. The theme is multicultural, but the nature of gourd art frequently falls into the Southwest and North American Indian genres so will coordinate with the Wild West theme of the picnic.” n Tamara Kley Contini, LS science teacher, spent a week at the Monterey Bay Aquarium in a teacher workshop on Coastal Ecosystems, and will be integrating many of the activities she learned there into her curriculum. “I also will be hosting a family discovery night for third grade. Third graders will share what they have learned about the ocean

with their families through fun hands-on activities. We also will do our annual Monterey Bay Aquarium field trip in November,” she said. n For the second year in a row, Scott Graham, MS Honors Algebra 1 teacher, attended the Math, Science, Technology Conference at Exeter Academy in Exeter, N.H. He also used a technology grant to find virtual manipulatives that could be used in his algebra classes. n “Sometimes I pull small gems from a professional growth conference, and if I’m lucky, I walk away with a diamond. Since this summer’s English conference was outstanding, I am more en’rich’ed” said Shelby Guarino, MS English teacher. Guarino attended a weeklong course called, “Making Every English Classroom an AP Classroom,” part of the San Jose Bay Area Writing Project taught by Jeff House. The focus was largely on inductive thinking and reasoning. “In other words, Mr. House believes that if students are encouraged to think of their own writing topics through detailed class discussions, they will be more excited about writing,” Guarino explained. “Whether they are pondering a topic based on classroom literature, or thinking about a freer topic – such as in a creative writing class – students start their own analysis by being allowed to think of what they’d like to discuss through their written word. The key for the teacher is to facilitate in-depth discussions that assist each student to think in creative ways. This philosophy gains

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strength by arguing that one’s writing will improve faster and be of higher quality if it is of an inductive nature. Since I have heard Harker students long to have more creative writing opportunities, maybe this inductive way of teaching could be a bit of a bridge to assist that desire, while also heightening their writing skills,” she said.

n John Hanlon, US English teacher, translated his fourth Russian play this summer. Trained in translation at the Yale University School of Drama, he now works exclusively with Maxim Kurochkin, a prominent Russian playwright whose newest work, “Repress and Excite,” was recently named Best Play of the 2006-07 season by the Moscow Times. “He also has been called the most imaginative playwright in Moscow today,” noted Hanlon. “The title of the piece I worked on this summer is ‘Moon-Crazed.’ Both of the Kurochkin plays I translated previously received workshop productions at professional theater companies in New York and Atlanta. Translating Russian plays into English fuels my theatrical imagination and keeps my Russian in good shape,” Hanlon said. “This activity quickens my sensitivity to what makes for effective theater, which is a core concern of my Modern European Drama elective. When I teach Russian Literature, I sometimes draw my students’ attention to the literal meanings of the Russian words behind the translated texts we study, which helps them understand the nuances of Dostoyevsky and Chekhov. And, if you think about it, Kurochkin is actually part Harker News — October 07

of the current chapter in the history of Russian literature. In fact, if we have time at the end of the course, we’ll take a look at one of my translations and consider how it continues and departs from the two centuries of literary tradition that have led up to it,” Hanlon finished. n In addition to attending the American Classical League and National Junior Classical League Convention this summer, MS Latin teacher Lisa Masoni attended the “Rusticatio” in Ben Lomond, a weeklong Latin immersion camp for teachers. “We spoke only Latin for the week, in class sessions, while preparing meals in the kitchen and in the cabins at night,” she noted.

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n eCybermission adviser and MS science teacher Raji Swaminathan made what is becoming an annual pilgrimage to Washington, D.C., for the finals, and this year was the recipient of two awards for her efforts. The team arrived June 15 and began getting ready for their presentations and meetings. Swaminathan shepherded her charges through workshops, luncheons and a full D.C. tour, including the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Maryland Science Center (a technology museum), National Zoo, FDR Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, White House and Union Station. The group also visited the area in the Pentagon where 125 workers were killed in the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. At the awards ceremony, on the last evening, Swaminathan received two awards, one for being a Founding Participant and another for being a five-year participant. “This was a nice surprise,” said Swaminathan. n US Latin teachers John Hawley and Trudy Stevenson spent two months in Rome this summer, studying with Father Reginald Foster. Foster, also called “The Pope’s own Latinist”, works at the Vatican as one of a team of five Latinists who translate the Vatican’s official documents into Latin. Besides reading Latin classical authors, Stevenson and Hawley studied texts from more recent periods, ranging from the Vulgate and the Harker News — October 07

Church Fathers, from Renaissance Latin works by Dante, Petrarca, Luther and Erasmus to more recent Latin, including a speech to the United Nations by the Pope and contemporary Latin news bulletins. They went on excursions in Rome and outside the city, visiting the very spot where Caesar was killed as well as places where Horace and Cicero once had houses. They also participated in Latin speaking sessions. Besides this intensive summer course, Stevenson attended a Latin conference in Naples, where the situation of the humanities was discussed (in Latin!), while Hawley took Harker students to the National Junior Classical League convention. n This summer Susan Moling, MS Spanish teacher, attended a two-week course in Barcelona as a part of obtaining her master’s degree in Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language from the University of Barcelona. She really enjoyed meeting her classmates after having “virtually” worked together over the past year. Colleagues converged in the beautiful city from every corner of the world including Brazil, Australia, China, Uganda, Turkey and Israel. The group was composed mostly of native Spaniards and native speakers from many Latin American countries, and like Moling herself, a few non-native Spanish teachers from Italy, Portugal and the United States. Among the fascinating seminars and lectures, the highlight was the “Practicum” sessions, where the teachers reviewed a portion of their videotaped classes with their colleagues for feedback and to share best practices in SFL (Spanish as a Foreign Language). But what really hit home for Moling was the practical, honest and encouraging feedback on her performance in the classroom from her classmates and professors on how a lesson’s objectives can be more clearly expressed, demeanor and body language in the class, etc. “After all, how many of us get the chance to have a group of highly experienced, supportive colleagues and professors watch us ‘in action’ and then provide us with valuable insight and tips we can take back into

the classroom?” she said. After each day’s busy schedule, Moling and her colleagues enjoyed exploring the majestic city’s treasures, including the architectural feats of Antonio Gaudi, museums featuring Picasso and Miró, and nearby historic sites including the astonishing Benedictine Abbey perched atop Mount Montserrat.

“ How many of us get the

chance to have a group of highly experienced, supportive colleagues and professors provide us with valuable insight ... [that] we can take back into the classroom? 

— Susan Moling, MS Spanish n Monica Colletti (nee MacKinnon), MS performing arts teacher, attended the ATHE (Association for Theatre in Higher Education) Conference in New Orleans in July. She attended workshops focused in “impulse based acting” techniques and improvisation. She plans to adapt the skills she learned for her middle school students in Elective Acting and Harmonics. n This summer, faculty members Karriem Stinson, Jaron Olsen and Theresa Smith ran the Eagle Iron workout club. This was a strength and conditioning class for Gr. 8-12 students. Over the summer a total of 70 students attended the workouts at least once, with the majority of students attending anywhere from 10 to 18 times. The staff was very proud of the hard work and dedication by so many student athletes. n Three Harker faculty, Linda Heyes, LS counselor, Concha Grande, MS Spanish teacher and Erin Redfern, US English teacher, attended Schools Attuned training. The program, “assists K-12 educators in using neurodevelopmental content … to create success in learning and provide hope and satisfaction,” according to the Web site, www. Cost for the program was subsidized by grants from The Children’s Health Council in Palo Alto and The Health Trust in Campbell. “This program is designed to help K-12 educators meet the diverse learning needs of all students in the classroom,” noted Jennifer Gargano, assistant head of schools, academic affairs in her request for applicants.


summers Summer @ Harker

Summer Programs

With our “Passport to Summer” theme this year the Blackford and Bucknall campuses were filled with a world of adventure and fun! Our first summer at Blackford was truly an adventure. Campers explored the new campus and enjoyed the big open spaces and the variety of well-equipped facilities. Traditional classes, including language arts and math, were successful as ever and more adventurous choices, such as Grossology and Inventors Workshop, put our science labs to good use creating ooey gooey mixtures and creative inventions.

Summer Institute

Zoomers on the Blackford campus proved we have many talented kids in some terrific programs. MS and US orchestra teacher Chris Florio’s orchestra workshop gave a wonderful performance at the end of their 10-day session. We were all amazed at their progress and performance skills. Bravo! Students in Digital Dynamite classes created by David Gelineau, showed off their movies at the end of the summer to a rousing round of applause by parents and campers. Short films with interesting plots, hilarious actors and one-of-a-kind camera angles amazed and amused — and were a big hit!

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writing and other courses. Watching the dramatic changes going on around the Saratoga campus compensated teachers and students for the minor inconveniences of construction, noted Bradley Stoll, US mathematics department chair, who headed the Institute this year.

Harker’s English Language Institute (ELI) has an outstanding reputation worldwide for preparing international students for American boarding schools. This summer, about 60 students participated in the ELI program, many of whom are already attending boarding high schools in the U.S. Students from Japan, China, Russia and Taiwan, among other countries, attended this year.

The Harker School is a K-12 independent, co-ed, college-prep school. Grades K-5: 4600 Bucknall Rd., San Jose, CA 95130; Grades 6-8: 3800 Blackford Ave., San Jose, CA 95117; Grades 9-12: 500 Saratoga Ave., San Jose, CA 95129 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. 

- Kelly Espinosa, Summer Programs Director

This summer US debate teacher Carol Green ran an extremely popular Debate Boot Camp. The campers learned a variety of public speaking

The 2007 Summer Institute drew about 240 students this year to its for-credit courses. These classes are the equivalent of those held during the school year, using the same resources and requirements, but with stepped up pacing.

Held on the Saratoga campus, this year the institute added creative writing, advanced painting and advance drawing, all three-week courses; two sections each of Algebra II Honors, Geometry Honors, Pre-AP Biology and Pre-AP Chemistry. The Institute continued to offer challenging math, art,

The Dancing with the Stars class spent 10 days honing their dance skills and working together to create a wonderful, toe-tapping performance. The girls shared their love of dance and their choreography skills. All in all, a summer the campers won’t forget!

Claymation classes were added to this year’s video creation line up, and the end products were incredible. Shorts about space travel and hungry aliens seemed to be the most popular and the artistic, talented, technical skill of the creator was evident in the final product.

English Language Institute

These courses are open to students from other high schools, but course credit depends on each school’s approval. Classes usually ran 8 a.m.12:30 p.m., so students had to be committed!

techniques and closed the session with minimonologues on a variety of heartwarming themes that really had the crowd glued to their every word—they were outstanding!

The program added a new teacher, Thomasina Goltzer, and three international teachers hired just for the summer (two from Korea, one from Central America). New portions of the program include running a recreation program within the ELI structure to better help students learn, and Fun Friday Field Trips, where the students who spoke English all week were rewarded with visits to Golfland, the San Jose Tech Museum, Filoli Gardens and other spots. This is the fourth year Harker’s ELI program has been in operation. “In a number of cases, having attended Harker and earning a high level certificate has made the difference in a child getting into a school,” said Joe Rosenthal, executive director of advancement, who served as the chairman of the Western Boarding School Association for many years. Rob Regan, ELI principal, said, “This is such a wonderful program for children from all over the world to get to know each other and learn about each others’ countries and cultures while working together to learn as much English as they can. We care deeply about helping these students and it is very rewarding to see our students succeed.” For more information about Harker’s English Language Institute, visit

The Harker News provides timely information, news and features about the Harker community to current and alumni Harker families. Editor: Pam Dickinson; Asst. Editor: Bill Cracraft; Copy Editors: Jennifer Maragoni and Vikki Bowes-Mok; Production: Nick Gassmann; Photos: Provided by students and faculty; Printing: Harker Copy Shop; Mailing Coordinator: Desiree Mitchell.

Harker News — October 07

Profile for The Harker School

2007 October Summer Supplement  

2007 October Summer Supplement