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Goshen High School's GUA Night & Open House

Goshen High School recently held a GEAR UP Alabama night to recognize and develop awareness of September as School Attendance Month. Jacqueline Stennis, Ph.D., GUA Family Coordinator, presented a student involved and engaged presentation entitled “Student Success: It Starts with Attendance”. During this presentation, Dr. Stennis emphasized the importance of students having perfect attendance in school to be successful in life.

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After presenting to the 11th grade GUA students at Goshen High School, Dr. Stennis traveled to Brundidge, AL and presented to the Pike County High School 10th and 11th grade GUA students. She ended her day in Pike County Schools by returning to Goshen High School’s Open House/GEAR UP Night. During that event, she spoke to GUA parents from both schools and discussed the following topics and then answered all questions proposed by parents:

  • 10 Facts About School Attendance
  • Opportunities Provided for You and Your Child Through GEAR UP Alabama
  • GUA UAB Dual Enrollment
  • The Alabama Community College System GEAR UP College Tuition Waiver

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Fall 2018 Updates from Jefferson David High School

August 29, 2018

The administrators, teachers, students, and parents, are excited to return to home of the Volunteers, Jefferson Davis High School (JDHS) located in Montgomery, Alabama. Over the next nine months, we have planned educational yet entertaining programs designed to motivate students to improve their test scores. Administrators and teachers are promoting a spirit of respect, punctuality, discipline, academic achievement, state testing, Eprep ACT testing, short and long term career goals for students. Site Facilitators, Telma O’Neal and Larry Turner, are collaborating with the administrators, teachers, counselors, community leaders and the Parents Teachers, Students Association (PTSA) to accomplish the principal’s academic goals and GEAR UP Alabama core values. In addition, Team Leader, Anteidra Martin is working with O’Neal and Turner to establish an external GEAR UP Alabama (GUA) Community Group consisting of teachers, parents, civic organizations and community leaders. Site Facilitators are coordinating with Activities Director, Aliki Brooks, and 10th Grade English Instructor, Darnita Mincey for social media support of JDHS and GEAR UP Alabama (GUA) events during the school year.

On July 25, 2018 and July 26, 2018 respectively, we conducted the 10th Grade Class Orientation and 11th Grade Class Orientation to students and their parents. Site Facilitators conducted a briefing on the purpose, goals, and objectives of GUA. We highlighted Kaplan Monday, Summer Camps, Summer Youth and Employment Opportunities scheduled during the school year. Site Facilitators discussed state testing and Eprep ACT testing for the 10th and 11th grade classes along with requirements for dual enrollment. Site Facilitators and the Team Leader are collaborating with both 10th Grade Assistant Principal, Takecia Barlow, and   11th Grade Assistant Principal, Walter James, to execute the principal’s academic goals and GUA core values.

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On Tuesday, August 14, 2018, Principal Bobby E. Abrams, Jr., conducted the “Man Laws” and “Law of the Ladies” briefing to students in the school’s gymnasium. Subsequently, Turner and O’Neal conducted a presentation on the following subjects: College and Career Night scheduled for Monday, September 17, 2018 at the Renaissance Hotel, Montgomery, Alabama; GUA National Kickoff Week scheduled Monday, September 23, 2018 through Saturday, September 29, 2018; and the Let Us Make Man Conference scheduled at the University of Alabama on Saturday, September 29, 2018. We provided an overview of the GEAR UP Alabama (GUA) objectives, Kaplan Monday, Summer Camps, Summer Youth Employment Opportunities, JDHS and GUA annual calendar of events for the school year. In closing, we discussed the state testing and the Eprep testing for the 10th grade and 11th grade classes to include the requirements for dual enrollment.

On Saturday, August 18, 2018, Accountability Interventionist, Shenitra Dees, Coach Larry L. Knight, and site facilitators conducted a Mathematics and Science Cross-Curricular Professional Development Workshop. There were eight 10th Grade and 11th Grade Mathematics and Science Instructors in attendance from Jefferson Davis High School. We strongly recommended  the usage of the Kaplan Foundation and Kaplan Advantage books. Teachers were instructed to provide the site facilitators with a student sign-in roster for the utilization of the Kaplan Books. They were reminded of Kaplan Monday.

In collaboration with 10th Grade History Instructor Rico B. Cox, the following activities, events, field trips and rigorous academic developments have been scheduled:

School Wide Voter Registration for Seniors on September 5, 2018; Community Outreach with Salvation Army on September 15, 2018; City Council Meeting on September 18, 2018; Field Trip to Birmingham Civil Rights Museum and 16th Street Baptist Church on September 28, 2018; ACT Prep with Montgomery Sheriff Department on October 2, 2018; Montgomery County Commission Meeting on October 15, 2018; Mock Election for (9th and 10th grade classes) on October 23, 2018; Mock Election for (11th and 12th grade classes) on October 24, 2018; Volunteer at a Nursing Home on October 30, 2018; Alabama State Connection Day on November 3, 2018; Youth Judicial Competition (Mock Trial) from November 3, 2018 through November 5, 2018; Montgomery City Council Meeting on November 20, 2018; Field trip to Washington D.C. from March 15, 2019 through March 19, 2019; Field trip to Atlanta, Georgia on March 29, 2019; and Field trip to Law Society in Montgomery, Alabama on May 3, 2019.

In keeping in line with the leadership philosophy of “High Touch and Future Proof” Site Facilitators, O’Neal and Turner will continue to brief, motivate and encourage 10th grade and 11th grade students at JDHS to achieve the principal’s academic goals and GEAR UP Alabama core values.

Submitted by:

Telma O’Neal & Larry D. Turner

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Aliceville High School Students Attended UA's Entrepreneurship Academy Camp

Students from Aliceville High School represented Pickens County at the Entrepreneurship Academy Camp at the University of Alabama this summer. 

Each summer, about forty student from eleven area high schools have the opportunity to improve their knowledge and applicaiton of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). This is done while also developing their entrepreneurship skills through participating in the STEM Entrepreneurship Academy at UA. 

This camp offers a fun and innovative hands-on approach to help students discover STEM in the work place, as well as introducing them to entrepreneurship concepts that are essential for business start-up. 
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Submitted by Wynelia Cherry,
GUA Site Facilitator, Aliceville High School

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Fall 2018 Future Proof Conference

This September, we’re excited to host the fall GEAR UP Alabama Future Proof Conference, once again featuring Let Us Make Man, here at UAB.

This fall’s Future Proof conference will be held on Saturday, September 29th in the Hill Student Center (Ballrooms A, B, C, and D) on UAB’s campus. The conference, which is free and open to anyone in the GUA community, will begin at 8 o’clock that morning and wrap up around 3 o’clock that afternoon, with breakfast and lunch included.

Throughout the day, we will hear from GUA representatives as well as members of the Atlanta based nonprofit Let Us Make Man. These gentlemen joined us at our Spring conference, and were a hit with everyone in attendance. During the conference, they’ll be leading two workshops; everyone in attendance will have the chance to attend both. The workshop topics are “Recognizing the Genius in Our Youth” and “The Modern Family, Restoration, and Parent Engagement”.

The workshop “Recognizing the Genius in Our Youth”, will be led by Mr. Keene M. Walker. It will provide a roadmap for recognizing the genius in youth; Specifically, identifying their strengths and talents and applying these skills to produce the greatest outcomes.  Additionally, techniques and strategies for motivating youth, raising the performance bar and exceeding expectations to maximize educational outcomes will be presented.

The other topic, “The Modern Family, Restoration, and Parent Engagement” is to be led by Dr. Gerry L. White and Dr. Christopher Bass. The purpose of this workshop is to examine aspects of relationship dynamics that tend to strengthen or strain the family. With a distinction being made between absent fathers and hidden fathers, this seminar will also discuss the critical necessity of building a strong mother to son and father to daughter relationship. This seminar will be provocative and informative while producing techniques for functioning as co-parents.

In addition to the speakers previously mentioned, we will be joined by Dr. Celeste White and Dr. Rosalind Bass.

We are confident that this event will be a great way for us to get excited for all that GUA will take on this year. Every part of this conference is designed to better equip us to work with our students, and we hope you’ll join us as we learn together on September 29th.

Click here to register for the conference.

Click here to volunteer to work the conference.

To learn more about Let Us Make Man and read bios on the speakers, click here.

To read about our spring Future Proof conference, click here.  

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Black Belt Fridays in the 2018-2019 School Year

Black Belt Fridays in the 2018-2019 School Year

One of the most exciting parts of school starting back is that we get to kick off the second year of our Black Belt Friday Bus Tours! Last year, we visited each of our regions, carrying over 100 members of the UAB community with us as we traveled over 500 miles over the course of the year. These bus trips work as a way to build relationships between our GEAR UP Alabama students and UAB students, faculty, and staff, and this year, we're excited to announce that we have six trips planned! 
27972296 590260694647433 1505541103262231741 nDr. Briggs snapped a selfie with the crew during our trip to Montgomery last year.

During these trips, we spend time with our GUA students mentoring, tutoring, celebrating, and more. They are designed to encourage both the GUA students and those of you that choose to join us on the trips. We want to share our stories, hear their stories, and let our time together be beneficial for everyone involved. You can read about last years' trip to Montgomery by clicking here! 

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Dr. Cora Causey and Dr. Jennifer Summerlin, UAB professors, were just two
members of the incredible UAB community to join us on our bus trips!

This year, we hope the trips will be better than ever, but we can't make that happen without you! All members of the UAB community and all partners are welcome to join us on just one, or all, of our trips throughout this fall and spring. Click on the date below to be taken to the sign up for that specific trip.

September 21st || Pickens County
October 5th || Pickens & Greene County
November 30th || Tuskegee
January 18th || Butler County
February 8th || Montgomery
March 1st || Wilcox County 

If you have any questions, concerns, or comments about the Black Belt Bus Tours, please contact Ashton Ray at avray@uab.edu.

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