Semester 31: Parents’ Weekend, Projects, and Prep for the Fun Run!

When we wrote our last update we were looking forward to Parents’ Weekend, but now we’re excited to tell you about Parents’ Weekend, along with some of the other things that have been happening around campus this past week.  We were quite excited to have so many guests on campus a few weekends ago.  They flew in from all over the place in order to see what our lives are like at HMI.  Our initial reunion on Friday night involved tons of hugs, a delicious dinner in town, and a bonfire and s’mores back on campus.  Students read poems, played music, and sang in a short performance for family.

Our families spent Saturday experiencing life at HMI.  We introduced them to AMX just like we’d been introduced on day one—with a morning walk around the one-mile loop.  After a delicious breakfast, classes began for the day!  Our parents were thrilled to be a part of problem solving in math, story time in Spanish, geography research on our hometowns in science, skits in history, tear-jerking poetry readings in English, and the leadership grid in P&P!  After a busy afternoon of classes and advisor meetings, we had a really delicious formal meal.  One of our favorite parts of the night was the slideshow—it had pictures of all the different things we’ve been writing about, and it was fun to see ourselves featured doing some pretty cool stuff!

The whole weekend was a blast, and seeing our parents for the first time in seventy days truly made us the happiest students out there.  But, of course, things haven’t slowed down at all since then!  We’ve been working really hard on our “Human Ecology Projects”—a joint project between our science and P&P classes that asks us to think about how the land has shaped residents of Leadville and vice versa.  The project has been and is an awesome opportunity to really understand and engage with the perspectives of Leadville residents.  We’ve been working so hard because we will each give a presentation to the HMI and greater Leadville communities on Wednesday!  To prepare for the presentation, each of the student groups went into town and interviewed a variety of people living in Leadville.  Everyone got some really interesting perspectives about things like the effect of the Climax mine on the town, the future of Leadville, and general pros and cons about the community.
We also had the chance to listen to and interview panels of people from the Leadville area who came to HMI to talk about their relationship to the land. It was really eye opening to hear the thoughts of people who had lived in Leadville their entire lives and had seen it change countless times over those years.  We recorded all the interviews and loaded them onto a student-wide server. That way we all have access to a wealth of information about the people and places of Leadville.  The next step is to compile audio and pictures into a multimedia presentation to share with the community. It has definitely taken a lot of effort, but we’re all working diligently and are really excited to see how the projects will turn out!

And, because we felt inspired by all the Parents’ Weekend poetry, we want to make sure you get a taste:

A Poem for Running

Early morning footsteps etched in the snow.
Breathe visible in the blowing, sometimes snow filled, cold air.
Crunches as snow compresses into the ground
and I breath deep as I keep running, trying not to lose my pace.
The silent runs keep together the weak, dreaded by the students in the cold dark.
Daylight savings lightened our load of freezing darkness
Meditation comes from the silence,
I hear nobody talk except the brief hellos as someone gets passed.
The snowing days and followed by the bright days,
which change from warm to cold nights to be relieved by fires in cabins.

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