June Students In Action Newsletter
It’s hard to believe that we are concluding another academic year in Delaware. Below, please find our June Faculty Sponsor Newsletter that also captures year end Students In Action statistics.
Wrapping up a successful internship.
The following blog was written by Kenny Monroe, a second year University of Delaware student and the Delaware Jefferson Awards Foundation LEAD360 intern for Spring 2017.
One day in early November of 2016, I was sitting at work clearing out my inbox. I was working as an attendant for one of the museums on campus at the University of Delaware, where I am a student studying Entrepreneurship and Innovative Technology. An email sent from my advisor with the subject ‘Student Awards and Opportunities’ was one of several unread emails that had been hanging around in my inbox for a few days now. Rather than simply clicking the ‘mark all as read’ button, I decided I had some time to kill, (Side note: it was a slow day at the museum (Side-side note: they were all slow days)) and clicked each of the emails one at a time to clear my inbox the old-fashion way. When I got to the one sent by my advisor, I was drawn in by the colorful, well designed page header and logo. Someone must have gone to the Lerner School of Business at UD to learn how to craft such a beautiful email header…
Just Kidding, I saw the words ‘Internship Opportunity’ and thought to myself, “hmmm, I could use some cash.” But, after reading about the position, I immediately forwarded the email to my mom, with the caption ‘This is perfect for me’.
I have a bit of a history with public service. As a child I went to St. Anne’s Episcopal School. This was where I spent the first 9 years of my on-going educational career. I attended the school from kindergarten all the way to 8th grade. This school did a ton of community service work, and instilled in me a deep seeded desire to help others. There was always some sort of food drive going on, or an event to raise money for cancer patients. This school seriously was obsessed with community service, and I was no different. In high school, I had my own service project. I partnered with an organization called Soles4Souls and collected over 1,200 pairs of shoes and raised over $2,000 for Haiti and its people. I was also able to travel with Soles4Souls to Haiti and distribute shoes to children. This was an amazing experience for me and it created a desire to do more service and help others as much as I can.
I am lucky to have very supportive parents. Shortly after forwarding the email to my mom I received a text from her. She urged me to apply and promised to buy me a suit if I got the job. I emailed Michele no more than 15 minutes after reading the job description. We eventually scheduled a date for me to come in for an interview. That day eventually came, and I, a mess of nervous excitement, put on a button up shirt and some khakis and drove in to Wilmington. I parked my car in the parking garage and made my way to the second floor of the community service building on the corner of 10th and Orange. I remember getting to the door of the office and seeing a doorbell. “Great,” I thought to myself “well do I ring it or just go in?” After weighing my options I came to a realization, this was no easy decision. Flustered by the thought of either walking in unannounced or ringing the bell when I wasn’t supposed to, I decided to walk around the building for a little longer. I eventually elected to just go in, and I immediately realized there was nothing to be so worked up about. Michele and Mallory were friendly and welcoming. The interview went well and I was even more excited than I was before.
A few days later, I received a call from Mallory informing me I got the job. The call came during finals week of my fall semester at college, so you can imagine how happy I was to receive this good news. A few weeks passed and it was finally time for me to begin my first day of training. Michele talked to me about some of the history of JAF, and explained the different initiatives the organization supports. I was excited to get started.
I have been with the Jefferson Awards Foundations for about four months now. In that time I have developed many new skills and improved on some old ones. I have become much more comfortable with public speaking, something that has always been difficult for me. For me, I learn best by doing. The Jefferson Awards Foundation has allowed me to learn more about working in business than I ever possibly could reading a book or taking a class.
There have been a lot of great times over the past several months working for JAF. Communicating with several Delaware Mayors, organizing local LEAD360 ceremonies, and meeting the kids who work on these amazing projects are just a few of the highlights I’ve had working for JAF. I look forward to my future with JAF, not just as an intern, but as a life-long supporter.
Note: Kenny will serve as the Delaware LEAD360 Intern for the Summer of 2017. If you or your organization is interested in activating our Phase 2 national project, Emma’s Art Carts, please reach out to him at email@example.com.
2017 Students In Action Competition
Delaware hosted its annual Student In Action competitions on April 8th at MOT Charter High School and April 12th at Delaware Technical Community College. The nine schools competing were: Cape Henlopen High School, Early College High School, Delmar High School, Lake Forest High School, Newark Charter Jr/Sr High School, St. Elizabeth High School, Sussex Technical High School, Thomas McKean High School and Tower Hill School. A panel of judges from various community organizations evaluated how Delaware Students In Action members described their leadership, engagement, and impact this year through their service efforts.
Cape Henlopen High School participated in 23 service projects throughout the year to accomplish their goals of helping and making a difference in the community, inspiring the passion of service in others, and self improvement. Through their JROTC/Students In Action program, they spoke about their structure and passion for service in helping community organizations.
Delmar High School was one of two Jobs for Delaware Graduates (JDG) schools competing for the first time and shared powerful and emotional testimonials from their Wildcat Wellness Pantry operations throughout the year, as well as their toiletry drive event and collections for both Fall and Mid Winter Conferences.
Early College High School spoke about the vision of their Hornets In Action program to be the local go-to for community outreach and shared stories of their Hoops for Hunger/Haiti project, Penny Wars, Unicef Trick Or Treat, and Rock Your Socks event.
Lake Forest High School was the second of two JDG schools competing for the first time and was able to share how they engaged their school in service during the Haunted Hallways event, Kettle Bell Ringing for the Salvation Army, and by collecting items for the Fall and Mid Winter Conferences.
Newark Charter Jr/Sr High School, our reigning winner from 2015-2016, shared their motto with the audience: Do Service. Promote Service. Love Service. The students engage all four grades of the student body in service through their Breast Cancer Awareness Week, T-Shirt Blanket Drive, Zumbathon, and (B+)lacklight Dance.
St. Elizabeth High School achieved all of their goals for 2016-2017 by creating two new projects, developing a new leadership structure, partnering with other groups to expand impact, recruit underclassmen, and keep their school involved. They shared stories of their many events throughout the year like their Jingle Bell Run, Peanut Butter Drive, Thanksgiving Food Drive, Rock the Socks, Christmas Card Collection, Penny Race, and Day of Service.
Sussex Technical High School’s motto is: “Ravens for a Cause” who spread their wings throughout the school and community to make a difference. Sussex Tech certainly demonstrated their commitment to their motto in their projects ranging from Positive Post It Notes, Thankful Turkeys to faculty members, Boxes of Joy for homeless shelters, a coat drive for the Ace Peer Center, and collecting the most items of any school for the Fall SIA conference.
Thomas McKean High School’s team, a hybrid of Best Buddies, National Honor Society, and Rho Kappa leveraged their robust team of 42 members throughout the year and were able to host a Best Buddy Ball, serve meals for the Red Clay Presbyterian Church Breakfast Mission, and donate over $3,500 and hundreds of in-kind donations to Polar Bear Plunge, Down Syndrome Association of Delaware and Best Buddies.
The winning school representing Delaware at the Jefferson Awards Foundation National ceremony in Washington, D.C. is Tower Hill School. Tower Hill hosted and formed partnerships to perform many community service projects. From raising $500 at their annual “Hunger Games” tournament to purchase turkeys for the Nor Enterprises Turkey Drive at Thanksgiving, to raising $1,200 at their Hoops for Habitat basketball game for Habitat for Humanity, and leading the school in MLK Day of Service benefiting Emmanuel Dining Hall, Sojourners Place, and the Delaware Humane Society.
Delaware’s Ambassador school, Charter School of Wilmington will be competing in the Ambassador Competition later this month and was able to provide peer judges for the April 8th competition and extra help. We look forward to hearing how they perform in the ambassador level competition!
The Jefferson Awards High Schools throughout the State of Delaware documented over 105,000 hours of community service which represents over $2.4M of financial impact to the community.