The House of the Seven Gables was abuzz this spring with events focused on students in the community. One of the highlights was the presentation of spring projects by Salem High School students who had participated in Salem through Hawthorne’s Eyes, an afterschool enrichment program. Approximately 60 students over the last two years have been served through this partnership with Salem Public Schools. Students chose an interesting aspect of Hawthorne’s life and reported their observations through PowerPoint presentations in The Gables Visitor Center.
Another keynote event held at The Gables this spring featured ten young Salem residents and conductor Ricardo Monzón and his orchestra as the featured performers at this year’s Gables Garden Celebration held on June 1st. The dancers’ performance highlighted year-long collaborative activities directed by Express Yourself, a Gables community partner. Express Yourself is a performing arts organization that works with immigrant and at-risk youth from Salem and other North Shore towns. Their creative effort culminates in a spectacular production that is presented annually at the Citi Wang Theatre in Boston.
During the garden celebration, two Salem High School students who participate in our Partner Programs received scholarships from The House of the Seven Gables in recognition of their leadership skills. Leirom Sanchez (Salem through Hawthorne’s Eyes) and Amanda Castillo (Express Yourself) each received $500 scholarships to help with tuition costs and the purchase of books and supplies. During his acceptance speech, Leirom expressed much gratitude:
“Firstly, thanks to The House of the Seven Gables for this program that is going to serve me for life. I am never going to forget it. I also want to thank Mrs. Cunningham and Ms. Kessaris for their teaching [of the Hawthorne afterschool program at The Gables].
Also, thanks to my mother for the sacrifice she made to bring us – my brother, my sister, and me to the United States. She decided to leave everything she had in the Dominican Republic so that we could have a better life, and now I appreciate her for that. This fall, I plan to attend North Shore Community College.”
In addition, The House of the Seven Gables was proud to host a lively graduation ceremony for seniors from Salem Prep High School, which is housed in the historic Emmerton Hall directly across the street from The House of the Seven Gables. On June 3rd, students, teachers, and families gathered to see seven seniors graduate, in what was the third graduation ceremony in three years to be held at The House of the Seven Gables. The students who graduated are Candice Chandler, Michael Dempsey, Anthony Lewis, Isabella Moore, Stephanie Perez, Frank Santana, and Timothy Story. This event served to celebrate and acknowledge the significant accomplishments of the students as well as the dedication, professionalism, and warmth of Dr. Cheryl Kelly and her staff.
The House of the Seven Gables was pleased to host so many wonderful events in support of our local schools and community partners. The future looks bright and The House of the Seven Gables looks forward to continuing to be an active participant in the enrichment of the community.
This post was written by Julie Arrison-Bishop