Courtney White is Wave Hill’s Director of Education & Public Programs
As lunch was wrapping up in my office on May 21, I had a surprise request from the Wave Hill Receptionist asking that I bring Mary Hynes, our Education Department Office Manager, downstairs for a moment. To our great surprise, there was a group who had just finished a self-guided exploration of Wave Hill waiting for us in Armor Hall. Michael Shanley, Operations Director of the Program of Academic Exchange, had organized a visit by a well-behaved group of 45 fourth-graders from PS 175 (City Island). Two children had prepared a formal presentation requesting that we “keep making Wave Hill beautiful.” Afterward, Mary was presented with an envelope overflowing with a surprise donation of $98 for Wave Hill, collected by the children.
It was amazing−only one student had ever been to Wave Hill before, and they had all clearly enjoyed their visit. In advance, the students did collaborative history research projects related to the people who resided or visited here, such as Toscanini, Twain, and Roosevelt. At various points on the property, the students presented the information that they learned.
Mr. Shanley has been booking self-guided visits (free of charge) for PS 175 through Mary, for the last several years. When I asked Mary about the school, she told me about she’s booked reservations for this group: Bussing has often been difficult, and she’d do her best to find visiting dates that met their needs.
I’m proud to share that as a result of this donation, several Wave Hill staff members have since matched the school’s gift of $98, in honor of these children’s gratitude and their connection to Wave Hill. Without doubt, these gifts will be put to use in the most meaningful ways.
With gratitude to everyone who collectively cares for Wave Hill and connecting to nature!