Arlington Regional Learning Center student artists include, from left to right, Gorge Sandoval, Alyssa Magana, Miguel Garcia, Ruben Hernandez, and Kevin Diaz.
Arlington Regional Learning Center students create mural to inspire peace
Students at the Arlington Regional Learning Center in Riverside spent part of their summer vacation at school working on a new mural that they hope promotes peace on their campus and in the community for the coming school year.
“We did this to inspire people,” said Ruben Hernandez, a senior.
Instructional Assistant and Art Club Advisor Sondra Gomez said the dozen students in the Art Club took a big step forward when they learned to work together on the mural, long before they picked up paint cans and brushes. They had to choose a theme, and that required time and talking.
“They stayed after school – in the summer – to talk about the mural and do the sketch,” she said.
Senior Miguel Garcia said they started with just three words – “Love Inspires Peace.” The mural contains the words, a picture of a heart, and other inspirational messages they chose on their own – “If you planted in your heart, what would grow?” and from Martin Luther King Jr. -- “Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.”
“It was just like that, love inspires peace,” Garcia said. “We wanted to do this mural to inspire other students, maybe other schools, to do the same thing.”
Senior Gorge Sandoval said they sat in groups of two, then larger groups. “We had to agree and disagree,” he said.
Students painted for days in the summer heat. They carefully worked around a drawing of a hawk, their mascot, which had been painted on the same wall a few years ago by John Chavez, a former Instructional Assistant who passed away. They knew that image was special and merged it with their theme of peace by adding the thoughts of Ghandi – “Soaring to be the change we want to see in the world.” Finishing the mural August 10 was a great accomplishment.
“We worked weeks on the message, on the sketch, and the painting,” said senior Kevin Diaz. “We just wanted to do something inspiring. We wanted to send a message.”
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