Letter: Community Key to Education

School Board challenger wants to team up with community to make Manassas City Public Schools places of adventure and inspiration for our students.

Dear Manassas Patch,

Thank you for such a comprehensive article. Being a product of a public
school education has afforded me countless adventures from working with NASA
astronauts to Disney Imagineering to the US Congress. I want rewarding and
enjoyable livelihoods for all Manassas students as well as my own children.

Fortunately, with a little innovation, we are in a position to do just that.
Being an engineer, I am a proponent of Science, Technology, Engineering and
Math (STEM) in our schools. This weekend is an opportunity to sample an
entire buffet of STEM. The second annual USA Science & Engineering Festival, which features over 3,100 interactive exhibits and stage shows will be held at the Washington Convention Center in Washington DC on April 28-29, 2012. Hours are 10am-6pm on Saturday and 10am-4pm on Sunday.

Happen to be a fan of Myth Busters? You have a chance to see Adam Savage
and Jamie Hyneman along with Bill Nye the Science Guy, and Mayim Bialik from
the Big Bang Theory as part of this festival. This event is open to all
ages and FREE OF CHARGE!!! For all the details visit their website.

One exciting example of the type of opportunity I would like Manassas schools to provide students involves a partnership between local schools and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science. Funded by a National Science Foundation grant, it allows students to remotely control robotic submarines as part of archeological studies of shipwrecked vessels scuttled during the last major battle of the American Revolution. With some creativity and outreach there are so many ways we in Manassas can partner with our local businesses and nearby colleges and universities, so that our students can have fascinating adventures in STEM on their way to graduation.

While an engineer, I love the arts. I want to see enhanced opportunities in
the humanities and performing arts side of things. We have Hylton
Performing Arts Center
, which is attracting all sorts of wonderful performances along with the Manassas Symphony , Manassas Chorale and the Manassas Ballet Theatre. Because of my middle school band director, I was lucky enough to be invited to play with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra during a few of their rehearsals and sit in a Master Class with Jean-Pierre Rampal...experiences I'll never forget and it has been a long time since I was in 8th grade! Let's try and
offer this type of opportunity to our students...look at all the incredible
talent we have right here in the city!

Whether in the arts, technical fields, or trades, Manassas has so much
talent, professionalism, and experience within its city limits. Let's find
a way to reach out and take advantage of all our city has to offer for our children. We should and can make Manassas City Public Schools places of
adventure and inspiration for our students.


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