High School Nostalgia: Our Days with Dekalb School of the Arts

Witches, monsters, and popular icons were in no short supply on Halloween morning as the HII crew walked down the halls of DeKalb School of the Arts (DSA). We partnered with the Atlanta high school to work on media and production of Human Impacts Atlanta, the first of the Human Impacts Salons that launched our national climate tour. Following Human Impacts Atlanta on Wednesday evening, the HII crew went to the school’s production studio to interview some of our esteemed panelists. We knew we’d be blown away by our one-on-one conversations with community leaders such as:

· Alexis Chase, Executive Director of Georgia Interfaith Power & Light

· YaNi, performer and Founder of the Peace People Movement

· Daniel Blackman, Community Activist and Consultant

· Shane Owl-Greason, Co-Founder of GA Solar Utilities, Inc.

However, we didn’t expect to find such bright, mature, and creative students facilitating the interviews.

A few of the students from Frank Mastrogiacomo’s Media and Technology class sat behind the camera as we interviewed our guest speakers. Growing up in a public school system, I was shocked by the passion and maturity these students held. But it doesn’t come as a surprise when you hear about the requirements for going to DSA. In order to be a student at DSA, you must maintain a GPA of 3.0 and declare two different majors in the arts. The school is rated as one of the top 200 Best High Schools in 2013. It’s no wonder why you will find an aspiring computer scientist who also majors in dance and creative writing, or an upcoming spoken word graduate who will have a hard time picking one of the many colleges that are pursuing her. After hearing about our work at HII, “Mr. M’s” class was eager to get involved.


DSA students are currently working on editing our footage of the salon. A wonderful partnership was formed: they get professional experience to carry them to their next endeavors, and we receive quality video and audio clips. What was most gratifying about our days at the high school was leaving knowing that we instilled an excitement about bringing art and climate together. We can’t wait to continue this relationship with DSA students through our programs such as Ecopreneurs, the Human Impacts Salon Series, and 10 Days of Climate Action.

Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Youtube, and Twitter to see some of the amazing work they are doing. And we hope to see you at our next Human Impact Salon in D.C. on Thursday, December 5.

LeAnne Harvey, Community Relations Manager

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