Partnerships : 2006 Outstanding Volunteers/Mentors

Elementary School

 

Jim Carson

Because of his 48 distinguished years in education in Northside, Jim Carson got his name on the actual school building. But what happened next is the amazing thing. Mr. Carson became a fulltime volunteer at "his" school. Words used to describe Mr. Carson are quiet and reserved - but he speaks at school assemblies. A skilled craftsman, he has made everything (of wood) for the school from benches to sandboxes. At Carson Elementary, the school mascot is Carson Cowboys. Jim Carson is best known as The Most Caring Cowboy.

Middle School

 

Rev. Stuart Clark

Reverend Stuart Clark, a mentor at Connally Middle School and winner of the 2006 NISD Outstanding Middle School Mentor Award, is best known for his big smile, which is thought to reflect his big heart. He has a gift for making all people feel special - but especially young people. For 50 minutes every week, Reverend Clark meets with two very different students - a 6th grade student and an eighth grade student. They are learning communication skills for improving their abilities to interact with adults as well as their classmates. An Associate Pastor at Crossroads Baptist Church, Reverend Clark is a mentor on his days off... and if he has any spare time, he also collects school supplies for the Counselors at Connally to share with students who may need them.

High School

 

Dr. Jeannie Von Stultz

Dr. Jeannie Von Stultz, an expert on serious issues like mental health care and teen suicide prevention, is always willing to give extra time and support to make sure that Northside's Safe and Drug Free Schools Program is giving parents and teachers the skills they need. Even though her work life is given to helping Bexar Count Juvenile Probation Department be successful, her spare time is given to speaking or coordinating panel discussions for Northside. And it's free. Part of Northside's Student Services and Guidance and Counseling Division, Safe and Drug Free Schools is headed by Mary Wynn who calls Dr. Von Stultz whenever Northside needs a "expertise" partner. And Dr. Von Stultz always calls back!

2006 Outstanding Businesses or Community Organizations

Elementary School

 

Chaplain Darrin Olson, Chief Master Sergeant Joel Alaimo and Tech. Sergeant James Richardson

When Elizabeth Allen, Valley-Hi Elementary, decided the 368 students at the school needed some outstanding role models to be mentors, she recruited Chaplain Darrin Olson, U.S. Army, and Chief Master Sergeant Joel Alaimo (Uh-lie-mo) and Tech Sergeant James Richardson, U.S. Air Force. Members of the 314 MI Battalion and 93 IS Squadron at Lackland AFB, respectively, you may know that these men are intelligence experts - so maybe Valley-Hi shouldn't have been surprised when they began a search of the base to find and recruit 108 Airmen and women to mentor 121 Valley-Hi students. The mentors especially work on practicing academic skills - with the goal of improving TAKS scores... and it pays off! According to Ms. Allen: We see our outstanding women and men in uniform giving to our country, communities, schools, and students. What a great partnership!

Middle School

 

Cynthia Davila and Oscar Perez

Originally nominated by Northside Alternative Middle School-South, it turns out the Youth Initiatives Program of the City of San Antonio is working in all three Alternative middle and high schools in the District. NISD recognizes Cynthia Davila and Oscar Perez, two caseworkers who not only represent Youth Initiatives but who themselves have contributed countless hours to NAMS-South. Youth Initiatives Case Workers spend three days a week conducting students groups on anger management and drug danger awareness. The school staffs call them professional, enthusiastic, and compassionate. The students characterize the results as life changing and long-lasting.

High School

 

Nate Witt and Laura Faust

When Potential Partners ask the school "What do you want from a Partnership?" the answer from Health Careers High School is usually "Internships." At any given time Fifty HCHS juniors and seniors are rotating through jobs at South Texas Veterans Health Care System representatives Nate Witt, Voluntary Service Intern, and Laura Faust, EEO and Affirmative Employment Program Manager. Whether it's a paid internship or co-op, Health Careers students get to shadow medical professionals in departments ranging from outpatient treatment to a spinal cord injury. This partnership is 20 years old.

2006 Outstanding Partnerships Program Coordinators

Elementary School

 

Anna Gould

Looking for the one who has literally "written the book" on mentoring? Seek out Anna Gould, Counselor and Mentor Coordinator for Howsman Elementary. In the Howsman program 75 Mentors from Valero Energy come regularly to Howsman - teaching students to play chess in addition to reading and math. Anna Gould has created a "Mentor Corner" where mentors can receive messages from their child's teachers. Because of her, Howsman now has an after-school Chess Program which includes 40 students and parents. And that's not all - she has begun English Language classes in the evenings for Howsman families with a different primary language. And yes, Ms. Gould has written a how-to Mentoring Book which other schools can borrow.

Middle School

 

Dr. Larry Golden and Dr. Deborah Healy

Partnerships in their purest form occur when two groups come together and find things they can do for each other that are mutually-beneficial: win-win, as the business folks say. This is the case when Dr. Larry Golden, UTSA-Downtown found he had advanced students in Counseling, Educational Psychology, and Adult & Higher Education classes who needed real world experience. Along came Dr. Deborah Healy, NISD Counseling Department who needed someone to staff and supervise the Northside ISD Parent Consultation Center. Now interested students and their parents can participate in evening group therapy while UTSA counselors-in-training sharpen their skills under the supervision of Licensed Professionals.

High School

 

Bobby Blount, Jr.

Single-handed creator nine years ago of the Solar Car Races in which volunteers help student teams build and race miniature solar-powered cars, Bobby Blount is also - in his spare time - a member of the NISD Board of Trustees. But his Partnership Award is for solar car races and their subsequent expansion - first to include elementary schools, then to include National Middle School and National High School Science Bowls. Because of his coordination, NISD sees better math and science grades and enthusiastic future inventors, engineers and entrepreneurs. Jay High Science & Engineering Academy, for example, had five students competing in National Science Bowl in Washington, D. C. just last week - inspired by 2006 Outstanding Partner Bobby Blount, Jr.

2006 Outstanding Partnerships Programs

Elementary School

 

Alex Navarro, Kelly Smith, Nathan Muster, and Maxine Bratton

Here's what you hear in the halls of Fernandez Elementary School: We need to do better on TAKS test! Let's ask THEM to help us." "We need to start an after-school basketball pick-up game. Let's ask THEM to help us. THEM at Fernandez stands for Teenagers Helping Elementary Minds. And these are Taft and Comm-Arts High School students who drive - and who volunteer before and after high school at Fernandez. It's great for the little kids to have big kids as volunteer mentors. By design, many of "THEM" are male, a boon in a place which needs truly "big brothers" for dozens of boys with no role models in their families. We salute THEM at Fernandez as the 2006 Outstanding Partnership Program - Elementary Category: Alex Navarro, CAHS; Kelly Smith, Fernandez; Nathan Muster, CAHS; Maxine Bratton, Fernandez.

Middle School

 

Prof. Reynaldo Valencia

Everyone is on their best behavior when the Law students from St. Mary's University School of Law comes to Northside Alternative Middle School - South. The NAMS-South students recognize that if a super-busy law student is willing to volunteer to come to their campus and mentor , then they must be valued. Future lawyers are stereotypically hardworking, confident, persistent, and focused. They also appreciate the importance in our society of the rule of law. They make for valuable mentors at NAMS-South. The person behind the program is Professor Reynaldo Valencia, who accepts the award today for 2006 Outstanding NISD Partnership Program for Middle School.

High School

 

Frank Humada, Jr.

Because he does so many different things in Northside, volunteer Frank Humada, Jr., is hard to describe. Let's just say Frank Humada, Jr. wanted to and he wanted to stay behind-the-scenes. So, he donated money to Northside Education Foundation and began designing customized scholarship programs. One type of scholarship reduces the fees for every student who takes a certification exam through NISD Career Tech classes - everything from cosmetology to Cisco computer programming licensing. Northside saw a 350% in number of certification and licensing exams being taken. Another scholarship pays for advanced degree courses for a teacher who is on the District Insurance Committee or anyone in their family.