Volunteers build homes in New Orleans

By Mariel Brunman

Trading in their pens and pencils for hammers and nails, students built foundations, stuffed insulation and hammered roof shingles in an annual partnership with Habitat for Humanity over spring break.

Volunteers built houses for victims of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans April 2-6. Through their work, students were encouraged to bond with faculty, Chaplain Father J. Young said.

Habitat for Humanity aims to build simple and affordable housing for families in need, especially victims of Hurricane Katrina, the hurricane that tore down levies and left New Orleans in shambles in 2005.

“On the last day, most of us were inside one of the houses painting,” Alex Haney ’14 said. “It was so much fun, and lots of us got covered with paint. I saw that some previous volunteers had written notes to the recipient of the house on its foundation, and I thought that was really cool.”

In the afternoons, students explored New Orleans’ sites, smells and sounds, eating traditional cuisine in the French Quarter, Haney said.