Seniors pursue a diverse range of May Projects


Kira Sekhar

Alma Moskowitz and Katie Baffa tour an art museum as a part of their May Project.

Louis Auxenfans, News Editor

Seniors have taken long bike rides and shadowed other student councils for their May Project, an annual U-High tradition that allows seniors to use three weeks in May to pursue a passion project. With many coronavirus restrictions lifted, seniors in the Class of 2022 had more flexibility with project choices than the past two years.


Alma Moskowitz

Alma Moskowitz: Visiting art museums for an introductory exploration of art with classmates Katie Baffa and Kira Sekhar

Location: Chicago and Paris

Why did you choose this as your May Project? “We wanted to go to Paris. It’s also something that I’ve been interested in, but didn’t really know a lot about, and so we thought May Project would be a good opportunity to explore something that we didn’t really know but had an interest in.”

What is your goal for this May Project? “In general, we just want to get more of an introduction to art, but also, you know, I feel like art is an experience — you have to know about the painter and actually understand the context of the painting and why it’s significant.”


Tyler Turek

Tyler Turek: A four-day, 220-mile bike ride from Soldier Field in Chicago to Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin.  

Location: Chicago to Green Bay, Wisconsin

Why did you choose this as your May Project? “I want to take my biking journeys to the next level. I thought it would be pretty cool if I could use this extra time the school has kind of given me to do something that I found really fun, which is biking up to Green Bay.”

What is your goal for this May Project? “I really want to figure out how to do these longer multiple-day bike rides, and it’s a skill that I want to take with me into college in the future.”


Eddie Christensen

Eddie Christensen: Volunteering at the ReVive Center for Housing and Healing on Ogden Avenue to investigate how homelessness is being dealt with. 

Location: Chicago’s West Loop

Why did you choose this as your May Project? “I feel like any person who lives in a city to some extent should be knowledgeable, if not in the fight against, homelessness. My entire life I kind of grew up in the city doing nothing more than tossing change into spare cups every once in a while, and being exposed to it but not really knowing what’s going on kind of motivated me to really, like, look into it.”

What is your goal for this May Project? “I’m learning what it takes to run a nonprofit. I’m learning what’s being done on the fight against homelessness. I’m learning about all these intersections between substance abuse, physical disability, mental illness and poverty.”


Kara Tao

Kara Tao: Using food to explore the Korean and Tibetian culture of classmates Loren Chang and Tenzin Karma. 

Location: Chicago

Why did you choose this as your May Project? “I definitely wanted to choose a project I could do with my friends because this is kind of our last moments together. And second, for me personally, I haven’t really explored much of Chicago, so I thought that this project was a really good opportunity to explore the other different cultural neighborhoods that I haven’t explored yet.”

What is your goal for this May Project? “My personal goal is to understand more of the nuances between different Asian cultures because I believe that much of Asian culture tends to be homogenized.”


Brent Pennington

Brent Pennington: Shadowing student council presidents in other independent high schools to bring back new ideas for U-High’s Student Council. 

Location: Chicagoland

Why did you choose this as your May Project? “I wanted to leave off my high school chapter on a positive note, specifically for Student Council. I’ve been with it the majority of my high school and middle school careers, and I just wanted to be able to give back to my community in one last way before I leave.” 

What is your goal for this May Project? “I hope to make it so that it’s more easy to understand direction for Student Council and other people in the Lab community who want to make change, just because it can be sometimes difficult to understand what the students’ role is in making change in the broader system.”


Grace Cruise

Grace Cruise: Sketching architecturally interesting buildings in Chicago and constructing a model with classmate Julian Deroitte.

Location: Chicago downtown and Plano, Illinois

Why did you choose this as your May Project? “The architecture in Chicago is beautiful, so we want to appreciate it before we leave.” 

What is your goal for this May Project? It’s just such a good opportunity to practice modeling, which is a huge component of architecture in college, so we’re going to gain some new skills and explore before we step right into it.”


Will Trone

Will Trone: Creating an experimental film with classmate Leo Mehring-Keller.

Location: Chicago

Why did you choose this as your May Project? “In middle school, we did this camp and we took a film class, and we were both really interested by it, but we haven’t really had time since then to explore that more. And so, we both thought it’d be just a good way to learn more about something new in ways that we hadn’t learned about before.”

What is your goal for this May Project? “A lot of kids, including me, made iMovie movies when we were younger, and I think it was a way to kind of finalize that desire to, like, make movies in a more advanced way. So I think for me, it’s kind of a closure.”