Students present to community business leaders
While the ultimate recognition – receiving their high school diploma – is still a few weeks away for students at the Simon Youth Middle College High School Academy at Northgate Mall in Seattle, Washington, a group of them were recently recognized as honored guests at a joint meeting of the area’s Chambers of Commerce.
Students attended the monthly luncheon of the Northgate and Lake City Chambers of Commerce on April 18, 2012.
|Academy students and teachers at the Chambers meeting|
Five students, Luis Ruiz, Salenna Green, Era Budhathoki, Naz Uddin, and Luke Walker, took to the microphone to share their stories of perseverance in their quest to complete high school in the non-traditional environment provided by their Academy, which is supported in partnership between Simon Youth Foundation and Seattle Public Schools.
“The Academy gives us so many unique learning opportunities. Speaking to the Chamber of Commerce leaders inspired all of us to see ourselves there in the future,” Luke Walker says. “My school experiences have given me the sweet taste of success and motivate me to aim higher.”
The visit to the chambers was organized by Northgate Mall Manager Matt Bourassa, who also is the Treasure of the Northgate Chamber of Commerce.
“It is important for the business leaders in the community to know about the great work happening at the Simon Youth Academy at Northgate Mall,” Bourassa says. “The school finds its success through the great partnership between SYF, Seattle Public Schools and Northgate Mall, and we want to energize other companies and organization to become active partners to drive even greater success and opportunities for the students.”
Teacher honored for conflict resolution curriculum
The Academy’s students aren’t the only ones earning the accolades. The school’s lead teacher, Beth Brunton, received a Peace Education Award from the Abe Keller Peace Education Fund on May 1, 2012.
Brunton earned the award for her classroom focus on non-violent communication and instruction of conflict resolution skills. The award came with a $500 stipend.
“So many of our students come from challenging and troubled backgrounds, and conflict resolution skills become an important tool for them as they confront their personal challenges and seek success,” Brunton says.