COVINGTON, Ky. — When they heard BLINK 2019 was crossing the river to their hometown, students at Holmes High School couldn’t wait to get in on the act.
About 85 students from different career programs worked together to build a lighted mural of the Covington and Cincinnati skylines for a BLINK block party, teachers said. You can find it at the TANK Bus stop on MLK and Holman.
The mural is 40 feet long and 6 feet high, and everything from the design to the painting to building the wooden structure was handled by students. They're proud to display it with work by professional artists from around the world.
“I think it’s pretty cool to be a part of this and to have our work on display and everything,” said Hunter McGill, a senior in the media arts program at Holmes.
Students were erecting the mural Friday and putting on the finishing touches.
“It feels like a big old relief,” said Jesse Milligan, a junior in the carpentry program. “Like it’s finally getting done and everything’s going good. Everything’s coming together.”
“I would say this is 90 percent student,” said carpentry teacher Eric Breetz. “There are times where teachers have to step in to tie in the loose ends, but the students have been heavily involved with this.”
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McGill helped bring the mural’s design to life.
“The hardest part was probably getting all the lines to look decent enough to move on to a different part and everything and planning out where everything was gonna go,” he said.
The students also made light-up yard games for people to enjoy at the block party. The school says just being part of BLINK means so much to everyone involved.
"I feel very fortunate that our students can take part in such a neat event that’s unique to our area,” said Breetz. “The experience they got out of this can’t be duplicated in other areas.”
Breetz said large projects like this help students develop skills that help them get jobs after graduation.
“Our students can go straight to work at wonderful companies in our area with fantastic careers ahead of them,” Breetz said.
McGill and Milligan are grateful for the technical programs at Holmes.
“It’s a very hands-on class,” McGill said of media arts. “We do a lot of projects and a lot of work with different programs.”
“It’s something I want to do when I grow up,” Milligan said about the carpentry program. “I want to be ready when I’m out of high school.”
Breetz said the programs not only benefit the students who are preparing for jobs but companies looking for skilled, trained workers.
“It also serves our community because the demand for people in these job sectors is very great right now,” Breetz said.