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The City Journals

Comcast, community and students come together to touch up Highland

May 31, 2017 12:11PM ● By Natalie Mollinet

The Highland community met in Highland High School’s auditorium to talk about the projects and the event. (Natalie Mollinet\City Journals).

By Natalie Mollinet | [email protected]

Every year, Comcast celebrates Comcast Day, a day when community members and company employees come together to help improve parks, schools, beaches, senior centers and other community sites in each state. In Utah, nine sites were chosen and, here in Sugar House, Highland High School was selected to get a fresh coat of paint, some cleanup and a new courtyard Zen garden. The turnout at Highland impressed Comcast, and they were excited to help the school for a second year in a row.

“It’s exciting to see everyone coming out from the community and Comcast,” said Zake Smounou, the Comcast Lead for Comcast Cares Day. “All the great teachers here and the principal coming in on their day off to help out really brings the day together.”

The morning started with students, faculty, community members and Comcast registering to help. All received a Comcast Cares T-shirt and then headed into the Highland auditorium for further instruction from Principal Chris Jenson and Smounou.

Last year, the Comcast Cares Day at Highland had around 1,700 people help with the improvements and this year, even with the Salt Lake City Marathon keeping people away, they still managed to get all the projects done including sanitizing classrooms, touching up the Little Theater, work on Highland’s H rock, repainting the no parking sections in the parking lot and repainting the room where Highland broadcasts their weekly news casts.

“It really went well,” said teacher Jenny Hardy. “Our room looks brand new. It’s going to make what we do a lot easier.”

Hardy’s room was one of the classrooms that got an improvement. Some of her students and others helped repaint the wall green to help their HTVS morning shows look better.

One of the big improvements was the diversity garden in the courtyard. All the plants and the majority of materials were bought by Comcast and together, students, Comcast employees and missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, put down the soil and planted the plants for the Zen garden.

“Everyone had a good time and we got a ton done,” Hardy added. “This is always one of my favorite days of the school year. Last year they cleaned out our entire classroom: 50 years’ worth of old outdated equipment and junk disposed of. It feels like a brand-new classroom.”

Not only does Highland High benefit from the improvements that Comcast came to help with, but after the projects are done, Comcast takes the list of people who registered to volunteer and times that by $15-18 per person then writes a check for that amount and gives it to the school and district. Last year, Highland received around $21,000 from Comcast, which was used towards the programs at Highland.

“We just want to give back, we love the community,” Smounou said. “We’re out here giving the best service we can and then we want to be able to help out after work.”

After finishing, everyone was rewarded with pizza and drinks.

“I think everyone had a lot of fun,” Hardy said, “and it was awesome to see the final product when they were done. I think they all were proud of it.”