The District 39 Educational Foundation sponsors cultural arts events for the community through the Sam Mikaelian Fine Arts Fund (SAM Fund). This special endowment was created in 1998 in honor of the retiring Wilmette superintendent’s 31 years of exceptional service to the district.
Past Sam Mikaelian Fine Arts Fund events have also included:
On March 9th, the 8th grade Wilmette Junior High School students were visited by a guest lecturer, professional artist Jay Ryan.
In the spring of 2021, the D39 Educational Foundation launched Silver Lining Project. D39 students and families were asked “What is your Silver Lining?” The goal was to find and share the positive amongst the unknown of COVID-19. (more…)
On June 4th, WJHS students displayed creative self portrait photographs at a public art show and wowed viewers with their captivating images. They should all be very proud! The D39 Educational Foundation’s SAM Arts Fund sponsored the project for WJHS students. (more…)
The D39 Educational Foundation and District 39 partnered to host visiting Swiss Artist Verena Brassel May 16 – May 25 at WJHS. This initiative provided students with an opportunity to make connections across curriculum and explore different world views. The program was financed by the Foundation through the Lydia Martin Memorial Fund.
On March 9th and 10th Highcrest Middle School 6th graders were treated to an afternoon of improv games, learning critical skills while laughing through fun individual and team games.
At the start of the 2014-2015 school year, the Foundation’s Fine Arts Committee launched our Rack*It public arts program. Art teachers from all 6 schools incorporated a creative bike-rack design project into their curricula to get K-8 students involved in this new community-wide event.
- 2018 Bathroom Wall Art Frames that display rotating art created by HMS and WJHS students featuring inspirational messaging.
- In 2011, our sixth and most ambitious SAM event was Wilmette does Shakespeare, complete with flash mobs, a performance of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and related celebrations at the library and Wilmette Theatre.
- In 2008, The Second City improvisational group gave a tailor-written performance for the Village of Wilmette.
- Our 2006 event featured the Holy Goat Ensemble and the Jubilate Children’s Choir presenting the music of West Africa.
- In 2004, the community was treated to popular Broadway tunes in Broadway Ballyhoo.
- In 2002, the Gus Giordano Jazz Dance group performed for the Wilmette community.
- In 2000, our SAM Mikaelian Fine Arts event showcased internationally acclaimed violinist Rachel Barton.
Each SAM event is accompanied by a related in-school enrichment project or presentation.