Graduation morning, our proud writers and photographers found the classroom filled with tidy rows of chairs waiting to seat friends and family members. As head master Mike Spencer told the crowd, a graduation is not an end, but rather, a beginning, and it was the perfect reminder we all needed to keep some tears in check. It’s always hard to leave a class, and this class especially impressed us with their collective kindness and bravery. They did not just report and photograph stories this week; they truly felt them deeply in their hearts, and so our teaching came full circle.
We may have surprised a few of the students when we insisted that good pictures do not come from the fancy cameras we bring to town. They come from their hearts. Likewise, our writers knew that laptops alone couldn’t string together prose without their powerful feelings behind them. Machines are just tools, and the creative skills students learned this week rested on the firm foundation of active citizenship and service that the Aga Khan Academy and Ana Mogos School teach.
Our team is excited to see these students again in two years – taller, probably, but also grown up in character as well. They will keep practicing their skills with the cameras we leave behind, and we’re excited to continue our critiques long distance through our private Facebook group. We expect great things from these young people, and we’ll certainly share their accomplishments with you in the future.