Colorado Rocky Mountain School students plan to gather youth perspectives on Gulf disaster |

Colorado Rocky Mountain School students plan to gather youth perspectives on Gulf disaster

Photo courtesy Rick Carlson

CARBONDALE, Colorado – Colorado Rocky Mountain School seniors Jared Carlson and Luke Newbury had already planned to travel to New Orleans this spring to help build Habitat for Humanity houses for their senior service project.

But the recent oil rig disaster in the Gulf of Mexico and its impacts in the Gulf Coast region presented another opportunity for the aspiring young filmmakers.

“The oil spill changed our focus a little bit,” Carlson said. “Now, we’ll also be filming a documentary, focusing on the youth of Louisiana and some of their perspectives.

“It’s something we never hear about … what it’s like growing up in such a volatile area that’s affected by so many disasters,” he said.

The region was still recovering from the devastation left by Hurricane Katrina five years ago. Now, the region’s inhabitants are dealing with what could be one of the worst environmental disasters in history.

“We also want to talk to the fishermen and some of the other people who are affected,” Carlson said. “I’m just curious if people are positive and hopeful, if they’re depressed, or if they don’t want to live around there anymore.

“We’ll just put ourselves out there and see what comes out of it,” he said, adding they may also try to arrange to help with some of the efforts to clean birds who are being affected by the oil spill.

Carlson’s older brother, Anders, is a student at CU-Boulder studying film. They plan to use some of his high-definition video equipment for their project.

The three-week CRMS senior projects are among the requirements for graduating from the independent college preparatory school in Carbondale. Students often travel to other parts of the country or abroad for projects ranging from health services in developing countries to learning organic farming techniques.

Carlson and Newbury left earlier this week to drive the 750 miles to New Orleans, an experience in and of itself.

The two will be in New Orleans until May 29, and will still be helping out with Habitat as originally planned, in addition to their video project.

They also intend to post regular blog updates on their experiences. Follow them at

Upon their return, Carlson and Newbury will be reporting on their experiences and showing their video as part of their senior project presentations at school. They also hope to arrange for a showing to the broader community at some point.

For more about the CRMS Senior and Interim service projects, visit

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.

For tax deductible donations, click here.

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User