With the Balboa Highlands survey completed, the students will continue their preservation work in the spring by working in groups to research and nominate individual buildings throughout the San Fernando Valley for landmark designation. Ultimately, the Student Advocates will graduate Kennedy High with a basic set of preservation skills and a working knowledge of local history that many people don't develop until well into adulthood.
"I always tell my students that they will take one class that will change them forever," said Kahlenberg. "I think the Student Advocates Program has had a permanent effect on a few of the students. Because of this opportunity, Irene [Guzman-Garcia] has decided to become an architectural historian. That alone makes this program worthwhile."
• Adam Rubin is the Los Angeles Conservancy's Youth Outreach Coordinator.
Photos: John Eng and Adriene Biondo