• Full FrameEducation Week's Photo Blog

    Homecoming

    by Nicole Fruge posted December 7, 2011
    Yancey Powell, manager of the Bay Foundation Hampton Roads Education Program, prepares the net for setting out to sea in the Chesapeake Bay. —Rich-Joseph Facun for Education Week

    Yancey Powell, manager of the Bay Foundation Hampton Roads Education Program, prepares the net for setting out to sea in the Chesapeake Bay. —Rich-Joseph Facun for Education Week

    From left, Ocean Lakes High School junior Tiffani Munford and sophomores Sheila Velasco and Jemell Sander investigate a conch with Mr. Powell. Students in the Virginia Beach school district take part in field exercises and learn about the environment in the classroom as well. —Rich-Joseph Facun for Education Week

    From left, Ocean Lakes High School junior Tiffani Munford and sophomores Sheila Velasco and Jemell Sander investigate a conch with Mr. Powell. Students in the Virginia Beach school district take part in field exercises and learn about the environment in the classroom as well. —Rich-Joseph Facun for Education Week

    Ocean Lakes High School sophomore Jemell Sander pets a blowfish which was caught, then thrown back into the Bay. —Rich-Joseph Facun for Education Week

    Ocean Lakes High School sophomore Jemell Sander pets a blowfish which was caught, then thrown back into the Bay. —Rich-Joseph Facun for Education Week

    Ocean Lakes High School sophomore Erin Newby, left, and freshman Kilee Henry, right, share a quiet moment while en route to the Chesapeake Bay where they will examine marine life with their classmates during the Chesapeake Bay Foundation Hampton Roads Boat Program. —Rich-Joseph Facun for Education Week

    Ocean Lakes High School sophomore Erin Newby, left, and freshman Kilee Henry, right, share a quiet moment while en route to the Chesapeake Bay where they will examine marine life with their classmates during the Chesapeake Bay Foundation Hampton Roads Boat Program. —Rich-Joseph Facun for Education Week

    Five minutes after walking through customs at O’Hare, I received a phone call from Education Week associate director of photography Nicole Frugé [about an assignment on the Chesapeake Bay]. After a three-year stint working for a newspaper in Abu Dhabi, I was on my way to my new home-base in Virginia.

    Forty-eight hours later, I found myself amid familiar waters. Having spent the majority of my life growing up in the Hampton Roads region of Virginia, the Chesapeake Bay was no stranger. On this particular day, the Bay and I were reunited alongside a classroom of biology students from Ocean Lakes High School who were taking part in the Chesapeake Bay Foundation Hampton Roads Boat Program.

    The Chesapeake Bay made for a great host for my homecoming and first assignment as a freelancer in the states. Her waters remained calm, while the manager of the Bay Foundation Hampton Roads Education Program Yancey Powell, Captain Jimmy Sollner, and the local middle schoolers hoisted up nets of fish and other sea creatures as part of their hands-on lesson.

    While most students did a little bit of their own gentle poking, handling, and prodding of the creatures for classroom credit, I clicked away allowing the bay to lead the way.

    I was home again….  —Rich-Joseph Facun