Photography is a new elective for students at Pine River-Backus High School for the 2020-21 school year.

Recently, the class took a trip to the International Wolf Center and Brandenburg Gallery in Ely. It was a long bus ride, but the students really enjoyed the chance to get some one-on-one photography instruction and see the wolves in action at the wolf center.

PR-B photography student Gavin Wosmek shared: “I feel like it helped me learn how to take better photos of animals and more specifically wolves in this case.“

Pine River-Backus photography students recently visited the International Wolf Center in Ely. Submitted Photo
Pine River-Backus photography students recently visited the International Wolf Center in Ely. Submitted PhotoSubmitted Photo

PR-B kids also got the opportunity to tour the Brandenburg Gallery. Jim Brandenburg is a famous photographer from Ely. He worked for National Geographic for years before returning home to Ely.

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Students studied the “Chased by the Light” series before making the trek to Ely. Chased by the Light was a 90-day photography study where Brandenburg only took one picture per day for the entire 90 days. Students were fascinated with the attention to detail and thoughtfulness that went into the series of his photos.

Partnerships are crucial to any high school’s career and technical education program. This year PR-B students are making personal protective equipment - face shields - in cooperation with Sourcewell, which is based in Staples and exists to help government, education and nonprofits to work more efficiently. Sourcewell is a highly valued partner for our schools in Region Five.

Pine River-Backus Career and Technical Education students recently made bird houses to give to veterans at the Veteran's Day Drive Through. Submitted Photo
Pine River-Backus Career and Technical Education students recently made bird houses to give to veterans at the Veteran's Day Drive Through. Submitted PhotoSubmitted Photo

For this project, Sourcewell is providing the laser and acrylic. PR-B students cut the face shields and assemble them. When they are finished, Sourcewell picks them up and delivers them to Cass County offices, which then distribute them to police and sheriff's departments, State Patrol and First Responders.

The completed PPE is also provided for PR-B students and staff.

These are challenging times in education and business and they require much innovation and cooperation. This life lesson is something we are proud to offer our students at Pine River-Backus High School. The students and staff have risen to the challenge and are finding ways to contribute to our community. Go Tigers!

Pine River-Backus Career and Technical Education students recently made bird houses to give to veterans at the Veteran's Day Drive Through. Submitted Photo
Pine River-Backus Career and Technical Education students recently made bird houses to give to veterans at the Veteran's Day Drive Through. Submitted PhotoSubmitted Photo

(PR-B High School Principal Chris Halverson contributed to this column.)

Steve Sandeen is career and technical education teacher for Pine River-Backus Schools.