Humans of LQHS banners showcase Blackhawk stories to community


Virginia Andrade is the cafeteria supervisor at La Quinta High School. Her banner can be found at the La Quinta Park.

Stories and portraits, plastered on vinyl banners, tell stories of aspirations and anxieties, independence, successes and heartaches, and line the fences and gates of local parks in La Quinta, as well as at La Quinta High School.

Humans of LQHS aims to cultivate empathy and an understanding of the Blackhawk community.

Through the end of the school year, nearly 50 of the vinyl banners will be located in several different parks across the city. The exhibitions display work of the 2020-2021 Hawkview student-journalists.

On Saturday, April 30 from 9 a.m. to noon, this year’s journalism staff will be hosting a booth at the City of La Quinta’s 40th birthday celebration and city picnic — where new Humans of LQHS stories will be shared in the form of postcards to continue informing the local community about the stories that make up La Quinta High School. The postcards will also offer an opportunity for readers to interact with the stories.

The journalism staff hopes the banners will create awareness of how valuable the stories of their school community are and help expose the work of the student-journalists as well.

While traditionally, Humans of LQHS started as an Instagram campaign in 2018, during remote learning, the Hawkview had to think outside of the box. The idea was to bring the stories of the high school community to a physical space as an antidote to the virtual environment.

Capturing the stories of the high school and bringing awareness to the community of the diversity of La Quinta High felt essential, especially at a time when the building itself was closed, but school was still in session.

These are stories that people wouldn’t hear otherwise — ranging from the freshmen to senior students, cafeteria and custodial staff to counselors and teachers.

The public exhibition was funded by Desert Sands Unified School District’s Goldfish Bowl with support from the City of La Quinta. The vinyl banners are currently on display at La Quinta High School, La Quinta Park, Adams Park, Pioneer Park, Fritz Burns Park, and Seasons Park. Additional banners will be displayed later this week at La Quinta Park and the high school.

If you spot a banner in the wild, don’t hesitate to let us know what you think. If you’re on social media, take a photo and tag us at @hawkviewlq or #humansoflqhs on Twitter or Instagram!