T-Minus 20 Hours

It’s crazy to think that I am less than 24 hours away from something I have been looking forward to since middle school. Senior Projects are one of the things so inherently Westtown, that I feel on par with the night before my first middle school canoe trip, or the day I moved in on Girls 3rd.

However, no matter how many years I have been waiting for this day, I can confidently say that my Senior Project ended up being completely different from anything I had imagined as a 12-year-old. When my proposal came back passed by the committee, and it became clear that I was indeed going to Berlin, spending a week at the American Embassy, the first thing that popped into my head was, “But what am I going to wear??”.  Continue reading “T-Minus 20 Hours”

Marhaba!

Westtown, February 28th, 2013

I am sitting in my empty, spotless dorm room as I type this – I will leave Westtown in about half an hour, and my flight to Israel/Palestine departs in a little bit more than 24 hours. The countdown gadget on my computer has finally reached zero, and I could not be happier about it. Senior Project is so close, I can almost feel it in the air!

“Marhaba” means “welcome” in Arabic, a phrase that I have heard so many times when I was in Abu Dhabi last December on a college visit trip. I love Arabic hospitality – they are so warm, welcoming, and always happy to give interested people a slice of their world. That is partly why I am very much looking forward to being in Israel/Palestine this time. But all that aside, welcome to my thrilling journey as I find my way to one of the oldest, holiest, and most complicated lands in the world. Continue reading “Marhaba!”

TourBot

My name is Alex Horne and for my Senior Project I, along with with my classmate Ben, am building a tour guide robot for Westtown School’s Admissions office. We are both heavily involved in Westtown’s Robotics Team, which Ben is a co-captain of. I’ve been building combat robots (made famous by the former TV show BattleBots) for the past three years. So between the two of us I’d say we’ve got at least a little experience with robots. Continue reading “TourBot”

T-1 Day to Israel and Palestine!

Date: February 28, 2013
Location: Westtown School

My name is Junda and I am glad to be on this awesome trip to Israel and Palestine. My last class before Senior Project has just ended, so I figure it is time to post the first blog of my journey.

My interest in this trip dates back to Freshmen year. My friend Wyatt Pace, a senior 4 years ago, went on this trip and did a photography project. As a photographer myself, his work fascinated me and inspired me to follow up on this journey. I have also always been interested history and political theory. After being told that my schedule would not allow me to take Hiroshima to 9/11, a course on international politics and affairs in post WWII, I decided that I will go to Israel and Palestine for my Senior Project. On my own, I have been following any related news posts, learning about the roots of the conflict as well as doing research on various factors that are contributing to the cause. Continue reading “T-1 Day to Israel and Palestine!”

It’s Ghana be a Good Time!

Feb. 27, 2013

Well hi!

My name is Rachel and I am one of the ten students going to Ghana for Senior Projects. In Ghana we will be teaching at Heritage Academy, a school founded in 2004 by Westtown School’s Teacher Kwesi, as well as doing community service and touring cultural and historical sites. Since this progressive school’s founding, enrollment has grown tremendously and every year Westtown students hold classes there, in subjects ranging from science to history to music and theater and everything in between.

I will be co-teaching an English/creative writing course with my friend Taryn, as this plays off both of our academic strengths. Truth be told I’m terrified. Not only will I be thrust into a completely foreign culture, I will also be expected to stand in front of a classroom full of kids who seek to get something out of what I might have to offer them. Continue reading “It’s Ghana be a Good Time!”

Temples and Trekking in Nepal

KIPPEleven students from Westtown and ten from KIPP DuBoise Collegiate Academy, a charter school in Philadelphia, will be traveling together to Nepal with four adult leaders, including the principals from both schools.  Students will be completing service in two local schools in Pharping. They will teach English at one and will be helping with a construction project at the other.  The trip will include home stays for the students and their KIPP partners. They will be visiting  several World Heritage sites in and around Kathmandu, and spend four days trekking
and rafting.  Their longest stay will be in the hostel of a Buddhist monastery in Pharping. This intrepid group departs on Saturday and we wish them safe and happy travels!

They will have limited access to cell phones and wi-fi, but we hope to see student postings here on the blog. Follow Upper School principal, Eric Mayer, on Twitter @ericwesttown for updates as well.

Najha in Liberia

Hey all,

This blog will chronicle my experiences in Liberia and my quest to further explore my family’s indigenous roots and improve their lives by helping to rebuild our familial village since being destroyed in the Civil War that took place from the late 1980′s until early 2003. In this time, thousands of Liberians were killed and many were forced to flee the country in fear of former president Samuel K. Doe and his successor Charles Taylor. Continue reading “Najha in Liberia”