September 10, 2013, by Josh Gentry

Full Circle – 10 Years Later

The other day I was out conducting a field visit at one of our projects that is nearing completion, and I overheard a conversation. It was between the district's Superintendent and a Teacher as they peered out to an empty field between their two new building. The teacher told the Superintendent it would be nice to have walking paths for kids to use between buildings as a place to study and learn. The Superintendent explained to the teacher that the original plan for the site had a trail, trees, and other vegetation in it, but it was removed from the plan due to budget concerns. However, he pointed out that as money became available they would pursue projects such as nature trails with the community if possible.

I felt a little disheartened hearing that we couldn't provide this for our client. I kept thinking about this and for some reason it kind of bothered me. Then like a flash of light I thought about when I was a Boy Scout.  I met with the head of facilities at Northwest Local School District to discuss a possible Eagle Scout project to improve their brand new elementary school. I worked with the district on the design and put in a nature trail and exterior classroom area for the students and teachers to use. I later learned that Monfort Heights Elementary was designed by SHP during their last Bond Issue!! It is kinda crazy how the world works sometimes but it made me feel better. It made me realize that maybe we couldn't do it now but that could open up a opportunity for the community to come together and make it something special to them.