The Smithsonian Institute has teamed up with many museums around the world to celebrate its annual Smithsonian Museum Day. On September 24th, 2011, participating museums opened up their doors with free admission for the public to enjoy a day of educational fun and creativity.
Its youthful celebration consisted of several exploratory rooms such as The ArtVille, It was a colorful town where the walls of houses and buildings were made up of large crayons, pencils and paintbrushes. The hallways and furniture were of painted stages, paint cans and padded blocks. There was, also, the Art Zone, which provided various art activities for children to bring out their innermost artist.
Drawing and painting were not the only things to do as a life size Schroeder, and his grand piano from Charlie Brown and the Peanuts Gang provided children the opportunity to sit and follow the lighted keys to become a musical artist for the day.
A giant Light Bright called the Pixel Wall Light Station offered a gigantic light box of over 4,000 holes that allowed youth to create glowing pieces of art by placing different colored plastic pegs in the holes.
Visitors and Retail Services Volunteers actively assisted children in outside paint activities as well as indoor projects. “I love my job,” said Giselle, a high school junior. “I volunteer here on the weekends, and receive community hours.”
Giselle is gaining valuable life experiences by volunteering within her community. With 150 community hours, she is eligible to receive academic credit and a gold pin on her diploma.
Ray Walker would love to work as a Commercial Project Manager for a top construction organization. After all, that is why he studied Constructional Management at Arizona State University, Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering. Although Ray was on the 2006 Dean’s list, he now joins millions of young frustrated college graduates who simply cannot get jobs.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 2010 unemployment rate for bachelor degree students increased to 5.1%, the highest since the 1970’s. In Arizona, where Ray resides, the unemployment rate is a staggering 9.4%. This seems high but what is so disturbing is this number fails to account for the graduates, like himself, that have given up looking for full time work or those who were laid off and their unemployment compensation has since ran out.
Annie Boozer, Program Director for Arizona State Department of Transportation, AZ-Local Technical Assistant Program (LTAP), is very much aware of Ray’s frustration with finding work. Annie recently posted a job opening for her department and within five days received 62 applicants. “There were more individuals laid off in Arizona in the month of August than we’ve had in nine months” stated Annie. “It’s a hiring authorities market, we have our choice on anyone”.
Much like Ray, Annie interviews many overqualified individuals for the LTAP positions, however, with state department jobs there is covered vs. uncovered policies that dictate the salary range for their positions.
Many states are eager to address the U.S education challenge, and have begun to adopt the new education law, adding interventional and remediation in earlier grades. According to Muskogee Oklahoma, Oklahoma kindergarten through third grade reading teachers will incorporate “the five elements of reading” into their teaching. Students who do not read at grade level at the end of the third grade cannot move on to the fourth.
My name is ShaRae Kalian and I am an education and leadership advocate. I strive to bring about extreme personal humility with intense personal will to help others to succeed. I believe that the passion we have within us is the fuel that drives us and it’s the burning desire that says, “Let’s march! Let’s go after what we want.” It shows in my publications and leadership trainings. I believe that each one of us has a passion that is self-generated and a contagious tool!