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Welcome to the Nest! Animas High is Finally Home on Permanent Campus

Desmond Tsosie ‘24 (with Rosie LeCompte ‘25)

Blue Skies and sunshine over the new nest at 22 Osprey Way situated on the Southeast corner of Fort Lewis College

Taking flight, Animas Ospreys tear into the sky immersing the clouds in colorful arrays of art, sound echoing throughout the high desert mountains, and Pandionidae, (a family of ospreys), preparing for painting peculiar patterns in our blank canvas.

Perched next to Fort Lewis College, overlooking the Animas Valley, our new building is a gift to be shared with generations of Ospreys. Ospreys are already filling the hallways with projects and art pieces, making Animas High School not only a place of education, but a gallery, a studio, a new home. Two trailers of which felt miles away from each other, now it's a few steps to our next class.

We at Animas are more connected than ever. With this connection, with this space, with this stable structure of pillars and glass, we are ready to move forward into making this not just a home, eyrie, blank canvas, but Animas High School!

The dream became a reality, from a strip mall engraved with sentiment and positive memories, two trailers filled with student creativity and falling ceiling panels, to now a grand entrance in the next development of Animas High School’s chapter, we are so lucky to be a part of this evolutionary historic event!

The timeline of building this dream has taken decades of hard work and dedication from figures such as journalism teacher Jessica McCallum, who states

“It’s amazing, I have so many words and yet I struggle to find the ones to describe how important this feels. I feel like we graduated into our own identity finally, we've been forming and trying to progress in education and we’ve never had a great space to do and now we finally do! This is game changing, my ability to do my job has enhanced.“

Students have room to eat and lounge in the new Commons space as they enjoy the views of Smelter Mountain and Durango below

The dreams of founder Jesse Hutt, developed around her dining room table in 2005, are finally becoming a reality.

“[The other founders and I] hoped to create an environment that encourages curiosity and creativity, collaboration, learning authentically; the sky is the limit, and it is now up to the students to do what they do," Jesse expressed. "I want it to be known as a school of innovation and welcoming environment that can grow so more students that are interested can come here."

“It’s been a long time coming,”

current Board President Jeff King recalled.

“It took a lot of hard work from a lot of people, not only current folks, but also from previous folks, including the most committed Head of School Sean Woytek, who pushed this project forward. And we are equally as fortunate to have Rebecca Ruland as our new Head of School to take it forward.”

Most Ospreys talk about the windows and the expansive views when asked what they love about the new facility

Teachers and students are excited to be here after all of this time.

“The new building is even more than I could have imagined. I feel so grateful to have this absolutely gorgeous new space,”

Office Manager Bridget Stowers enthusiastically shared.

“I love the amount of windows and the light that it brings into our school. I love the interior windows too. It makes me so happy to walk around and see students and teachers working and learning in the classrooms. I am so excited to see the projects that will be created and exhibited in this new space. I can imagine wonderful creations going in and out of the huge garage doors. I envision critical thinkers and fully engaged students filling our beautiful new building.”

Just weeks into this new chapter, we have seen exhibitions and projects come to life in the new nest, Juniors and sophomores have already held exhibitions in the new diverse spaces that the new building holds. Juniors showed a great example of what the future holds and what it means to be an Animas Osprey through incredible art pieces filled with emotion and meaning, music, and delicious appetizers, deserts, and entrees, in our chemistry Exhibition, And sophomores have shown creativity in their Space Travel Exhibition!

Students are thriving, when you put one foot through the door or even arrive on our campus you will be greeted by a smile on students faces, a student holding a door, a group of students working together on a project for a class. You will be greeted by people, not just students wanting to get through the day, slooching in hallways, sleeping on desks, and throwing paper airplanes in every direction.

Ospreys spread out for the first NEST meeting in the new building

Most will be amazed by what Animas High School has to offer which is what separates AHS from the rest.

“We recently had two families visiting who were sent off with student ambassadors to do a tour of this building, in the old building we had to do this song and dance show to be able to convince these families to consider us as a reliable source of education. Now here we get to finally prove we really are an amazing school! It feels amazing!”

Dean of Enrollment Libby Cowles states.

Students are coming forward with how much they love the change and what they are planning for the future of their time at animas.

“I am feeling pretty good in the new building, it has been a big change but I know that we will be able to adapt well. I was very nervous at the beginning, the building is big and it doesn't f