By: Susan Gum // January 29th, 2019 // Stories
Although January 18 marked the end of J-Term 2019 for Delmarva Christian High School students, the impact it made will last for years to come. For the past several weeks, DCHS students have engaged in educational experiences outside the normal classroom environment that have enabled them to discover God’s call on their lives as they pursued their passions—passions found in mission-work, career-focused internships, teambuilding skills, and academic pursuits.
The opportunities afforded students this year included learning from and ministering to others in Germany, Jamaica, and London/Paris/Rome. For those students who chose to stay stateside, there were opportunities for volunteer work, business internships, short film production, teambuilding pursuits, and survival training. Additionally, students had the opportunity to gain photography skills, study the evolution of film, embark in a bakery competition, and learn about the food and traditions found in Spanish culture.
While travelling through Rome this J-Term, DCHS senior Evan Hartnett learned much about leaving a legacy. “In the ruins of a Roman palace, I learned that the most magnificent structures can and will fall over time,” said Evan. “But, the character and integrity of the men who lived in them still stands.”
As for DCHS senior Ben Hobbs, who stayed in Georgetown assisting Habitat for Humanity volunteers, J-Term provided him with a new perspective. “These two weeks helped me understand the importance of serving and giving back to the community with the talents and gifts God has given me,” said Ben. “Also, this time helped me explore God’s call on my life which is to help people through using my hands for building.”
The culmination of J-Term 2019 took place during the school’s Showcase and Open House. The high school’s Arts & Athletic Center was packed with visitors who moved around display booths filled with souvenirs from distant lands, survivor gear, culinary delights, movie memorabilia, slide presentations, photography, and so much more. The evening transitioned to a spirit-filled assembly where students led praise and worship, performed human videos, and shared testimonies.
Principal Matt Kwiatkowski summed up J-Term 2019 by saying, “It was evident that these experiences, simply put, provided opportunities for our students to better understand Christ’s love for them, and where and how to communicate that love with others given their unique strengths and passions.”
(Above) The DCHS J-Term Survival Skills team received CPR and AED certification training from members of the American Heart Association. Not only did the students, like junior Logan Tyler, learn how to perform adult and child CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and the use of an AED (automated external defibrillator), they also received training on how to relieve choking in adults, children, and infants.
During the J-Term Showcase, guests, parents, and students visiting the Germany display booth were treated to a vast array of artifacts and photos, and learned about Buigen-Gymnasium (Bu-Gy)—a school that has partnered with DCHS since 2006. The DCHS students shared how, on one particular day, they prepared a presentation about faith and God’s light to the Bu-Gy students, and then traveled to Dachau Concentration Camp where they learned about the dark atrocities committed there.
Over thirty DCHS students enrolled in business internships during J-Term. At their internship, sophomores Haley Pinkstaff and Kandice Schlabach organized bookkeeping records for an established business and conducted marketing research for a start-up. Although both businesses were very different, Haley and Kandice learned what skills are valuable for business success–dedication, persistence, and organization. For sophomore Aaron Webster, he lent a hand at a local music shop where he learned that business isn’t always about selling—it’s also about building relationships and helping people.
The Traditional Spanish class started their J-Term course by shopping at El Mercado Market in Georgetown for the food stuffs they would need to make Central and South American foods like arepas, chilaquiles, and pupusas. In order to make sure all of the ingredients were authentic, DCHS freshman Michael Hart and his classmates learned how to make everything from scratch–nothing was canned or packaged–including the salsa.
On one of the last days of J-Term, the Photography class visited national and international award-winning photographer Kevin Fleming at his gallery on Rehoboth Avenue. While at his gallery, students asked questions and heard some of Fleming’s amazing stories that served as a backdrop to some of his amazing photographs.
Despite a drop in temperature to only 32 degrees, the DCHS Habitat for Humanity J-Term team of nineteen, including Sara Wilson, was hard at work at the Ingram Village Community in Ellendale enthusiastically installing hurricane clips and building sheds.