Andrew Mitchell, Program Manager for the Birmingham Education
Foundation, (ED) was directing traffic in and out of the Harbert Center like it was an airport. Approximately 200 11th graders representing all 7 Birmingham city schools came prepared to get coaching on interview skills from local Rotarians. Mock interviews were set up at tables, one on one, between student and Rotarian.
2017 marks the 4th year that The Rotary Club of Birmingham has been providing hands-on service to the the Career Academy Program which was initiated by Victoria Hollis of ED. The initiative’s goal is prepare todays students for career and college success. Find out more.
In addition to 75 or so Rotarians, and volunteers from the ED, several college students from University of Tennessee gave up their spring break to come to Birmingham to work at the event. At the welcome table was Amanda Kuipers from UT in Knoxville.
” My group is volunteering in Birmingham, AL through a national program called the Alternative Break Program. The focus on this service learning trip is tough development, and we have worked with local students, the Birmingham Education Fund, Better Basica and the Boys and Girls Club.” said Amanda Kuipers.
Many of the University of Tennessee ‘Volunteers’ pun fully intended, arrived in Birmingham on March 12th and got a taste of the Magic City. When asked what she thought of Birmingham, Ms. Kuipers replied,
“Birmingham is a beautiful city with fantastic community involvement and a rich, inviting culture.”
Rotary Club of Birmingham is frequently touted as being the largest Rotary club in the world with over 600 members. With a motto of ‘Service Above Self’, programs such as the Career Academy provide opportunities for some of the most successful business men and women in Birmingham to utilize their skills to help fill some specific needs of our city.
Today’s event took many hands and much coordination between ED, Birmingham City Schools, Rotary and student volunteers. But they all shared the purpose of helping Birmingham’s high school students prepare for the real world.
According to their website, ED is dedicated to;
“Increasing the number of students in the Birmingham City Schools that are on the path to college, career, and life readiness. We believe that this is only possible by cultivating a diverse network of people who demand excellence for our students and inspire others to do the same.”
That’s a cause we can all get behind!
And, UT students, we appreciate your generosity and welcome you back to Birmingham anytime!