Technical Assistance

Professional Circle Member Hosts High School Students

Professional Circle Member Hosts High School Students
Professional Circle Member Hosts High School Students
-Bronx International High School Students

March 26, 2015

Students considering careers in preservation technology delved into the mysterious world of historic mortar during a morning field visit to one of the Conservancy’s Professional Circle members.

In our continuing affiliation with Bronx International High School, which is housed in the landmark Morris High School (C.B.J. Snyder, 1900-1904) a group of students visited the offices of Integrated Conservation Resources & Integrated Conservation Contractors (ICR/ICC). The students attended a lecture followed by hands-on work with mortars using performance tests and chemical analysis to determine their components.

The lecture, given by Director of Scientific Research Norman Weiss, began with an overview of historic masonry construction and the often-overlooked component of a masonry wall, the mortar. He showed slides of different kinds of damage commonly found on masonry walls and explained their causes and possible remedies. He also spoke briefly about the process of paint analysis and its role in historic preservation projects.

The morning was meant to expose the students to the profession of historic preservation and the various career paths in the building conservation and restoration fields.

After the lecture, the students went to ICR’s excellent lab to meet Associate Conservator Jennifer Schork. She demonstrated how to test for various components in mortar. She also explained why it is crucial to understand as much as possible about their composition when specifying repairs or performing restoration of historic masonry.

Eighteen students and three teachers participated. The students enjoyed the experience of visiting a professional office and learning a huge amount in a short time about what professionals in the field of conservation do and how they do it. This was the second group of students from Bronx International to visit ICR.

The Conservancy would like to thank Glenn Boornazian, principal conservator and president of ICR/ICC. We will continue to plan field trips utilizing the expertise of our Professional Circle members who work in various fields.

Boornazian explained his willingness to host the students this way:
“We are very happy to give back what we can to people who might find a passion in what we do.”