This article originally appeared in the summer 2015 Harker Quarterly.
As a parting gesture, this year’s graduating class dedicated its senior gift toward helping to finance an extension to the Shah patio area. Through class fundraising and their senior donations, the students rallied together to raise more than $6,500 for the project.
“Every year the graduating class leaves behind a senior gift. The idea of this year’s gift is to enable Shah patio to serve as an expanded recreation setting for seniors, as well as allow students travelling to Shah by way of Davis Field to take a shorter route,” explained Joe Rosenthal, Harker’s executive director of advancement.
At the beginning of this school year, the senior class lost access to the Sledge, a former senior-only lounge that was converted into the faculty dining room and a meeting space for students in the DECA program. The new patio will allow Shah Hall to serve as an informal gathering spot for future seniors.
Plans are in the works to have an on- site patio with tables and an awning to provide shade, surrounded by planter boxes. There is also discussion of including benches with motivational phrases that reflect Harker values, like “kindness, patience and respect.”
Last year, the senior class gift went toward honoring beloved former faculty member Jason Berry by creating an orchard in his memory. The Berry Orchard is now located in the space between Dobbins and Nichols halls.