Posts Tagged ‘students’

Company’s grant helps CYO upgrade computer lab for students in Trenton

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

Gordon Medenica (pictured above,) CEO Northstar New Jersey, speaks at the podium in the gym at the CYO of Mercer County on S. Broad St. in Trenton, New Jersey before the official opening of the first Northstar NJ After School Advantage Computer Lab. At left is Tom Mladenetz, Executive Director, CYO of Mercer County and at right, Senator Shirley Turner. Michael Mancuso/The Times

By Nicole Mulvaney / The Times of Trenton

More than 100 students from 12 Mercer County schools make their way to the Catholic Youth Organization of Mercer County on South Broad Street every day to participate in arts and crafts classes, play on the outside playground and get homework help through the group’s after-school program.

But the organization’s computers, located in an upstairs lab, were more than 10 years old, prompting officials to apply for a grant that would help them revitalize the space.

With the assistance of Northstar New Jersey, the management services company that provides sales and marketing support to the New Jersey Lottery through a Growth Services Agreement with New Jersey and Department of Treasury, the lab got a complete makeover this winter as volunteers replaced the old machines with 14 Dell flat-screen computers and added new printers, desks, speakers, headphones, educational software, flooring and a fresh coat of paint.

“The state lottery has a slogan: ‘Give Your Dreams a Chance,’ and now Northstar is giving a chance to these kids to succeed and do better academically,” CYO Executive Director Tom Mladenetz said. “We are very pleased to be a beneficiary of their generosity.”

Executives from Northstar joined state Sen. Shirley Turner (D-Lawrence), Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes, Mladenetz and other local officials yesterday to unveil the $30,000 refurbished lab as about a dozen children quickly settled in front of the new computers to play games with headphones clinging to their ears.

The CYO applied for the grant with Northstar two years ago, and Mladenetz said officials were ecstatic when they recently learned they were chosen for the lab renovation.

“The kids were just thrilled to know what was coming,” he said. “It was almost like waiting for Christmas morning.”

The South Broad Street facility operates out of a more than 90-year-old former movie theater, and the computer lab renovation was a much needed project, Mladenetz said.

The CYO also operates facilities on East State Street in the city and two others in Ewing and Yardville.

In addition to after-school programs, it also offers preschool programs and summer camps for area children.

The Northstar New Jersey After School Advantage program began in 1999 through the GTECH Corp., a company that provides technology solutions to regulated gaming markets.

The program provides educational opportunities to children by donating new computers, printers, software, furniture and volunteer hours to nonprofit organizations that sponsor after-school programs in areas where Northstar has offices.

The After School Advantage program aims to narrow the digital divide to grant more children access to computers and other educational opportunities, Northstar CEO Gordon Medenica said.

“These computer labs are designed to provide urban children aged 5 to 15 with a meaningful but fun learning experience during those critical after-school hours in a safe environment,” he said. “Northstar hopes to increase children’s interest in careers in computers and provide them with the necessary tools to help them become more competitive in school and in today’s job market.”

Click here to read from this article’s source.

The White House Announces ‘Lights. Camera. Education!’ for student filmmakers! Make a short film by Wed 1/29/14

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

Lights. Camera. Education!

Deadline: Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Are you a student filmmaker? Know someone who is? We want your help.

If you’re a student, we want you to make a short film — and have the chance to show it right here at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue for the first-ever White House Student Film Festival. If you’re a parent or a friend, pass this on to a student you know.

The topic? Technology in classrooms. There’s huge power in what technology can do for education — from taking a course online, to collaborating with students from across the country (or the world!)

We’re looking for awesome student filmmakers to show the power of technology in classrooms in a short film.

If that sounds like you — or someone you know — go to and find out how you can participate.

But hurry! You’ve only got until January 29th to send in your submission. So, if it’s going to get “two thumbs up,” you’d better start now.

Not a K-12 student?

Forward this to someone who is at:

Click below to watch a video about the
White House Student Film Festival

Register by 1/24/14! Supporting Student Success: Staff Development Workgroup – Fri 2/7/14

Saturday, January 18th, 2014

Application due Friday, January 24, 2014 

Click here to register today!

When: Friday, February 7, 2014


First Baptist Church

170 Elm Street

Westfield, NJ 07090

Time: 10:00am – 2:00pm

Cost: FREE

NJSACC invites qualifying programs serving students afterschool to participate in an exciting project intended to grow strong, competent staff. Participants will convene to work towards supporting student success during the school day by providing quality afterschool programs to students and their families.

This project is focused on Staff Development as a means to improve program quality and impact on student success.”Time and attention paid to staff development activities will directly improve the overall quality of the program. It results in increased competence on the job, ability to accept growing levels of responsibility, deepening commitment to the program, improve understanding of school age child care, strengthening working relationships and communications skills, promoting a greater personal growth, self awareness and, feelings of connectedness to the total program.”
– School-Age Child Care: An Action ManualA strong Staff Development plan is a benchmark of a high quality Out of School Time program.

Who can participate:

  • Program directors and managers, who supervise, train and evaluate staff that work directly with students.

Project Goals and Experiences:

  • Program Leadership will explore and learn about Staff Development as a means to supporting Students Academic Success.
  • Programs participating will gather in a working group that will learn about creating staff development plans with a focus on supporting student’s success.
  • The Workgroup will discuss content of high quality Staff Development Plans
  • NJSACC will provide ongoing support to Program Leadership to implement Staff Development plans with a menu of training and time for technical assistance to support Program Directors goals to grow staff.
  • Work group will review and get full comprehension of NJ The Office of Licensing Definition of a Staff Development Plan for School Age Programs

Project period (February 2014-May 2014)

  • Participants will receive training and get regular support to complete Staff Development activities with resources, program visits, phone and email assistance.

Participation Eligibility:

  • Program must be a licensed child care provider, licensed by the State of NJ office of Licensing.
  • Program must serve at least 10% of children that participate in the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP).
  • Program must commit to an orientation session taking place on February 7, 2014.
  • Program must commit to ongoing Professional Development and Technical Assistance.
  • Program must commit to monthly communications in order to continue participation.
Presented by NJSACC: The Network for New Jersey’s Afterschool CommunitiesThis project is Funded by the State of New Jersey, Department of Family Development.

#Expanding Minds Live Stream @

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

(National Press Club – NJ Team)

Expanding Minds and Opportunities:
Leveraging the Power of Afterschool and Summer Learning for Student Success

(Live Stream for this session is now over at:

The NJ Team — Mary Reece, Diane Genco, Melanie Schulz, Nyeema Watson and Ebony Grace —  attended the release of a new compendium on afterschool:  Expanding Minds and Opportunities: Leveraging the Power of Afterschool and Summer Learning for Student Success.  NJ’s own Susan Martz, NJ Department of Education, contributed an article to the book.

Governors, Mayors, Researchers, Funders In New Book Confirm Afterschool and Summer Programs Contribute to Education Success

 Washington, D.C. – A solid base of research and best practices shows that quality afterschool and summer learning programs make a positive difference for students, families, schools, and communities, according to a new book authored by more than 100 researchers, educators, community leaders, policy makers, and practitioners. The book offers specific examples from across the country of how this growing movement is turning “non-school hours” into “learning hours” to support children and youth.

The first-of-its-kind book, Expanding Minds and Opportunities: Leveraging the Power of Afterschool and Summer Learning for Student Success, demonstrates the role afterschool and summer learning play in improving and expanding students’ education, how communities with different demographics are building successful supports for their students, the role afterschool programs play in education reform, how these programs are helping students become more career and college ready and engaged in learning, and more.

“Afterschool and summer learning programs expand minds and opportunities for America’s kids,” said the book’s executive editor, Terry K. Peterson, Ph.D., at the book release event in Washington, D.C. today. “This book presents strong evidence that quality afterschool and expanded learning opportunities contribute to student success and should be moved from the margins of the education reform agenda to being one of the important tools and strategies leveraged to help more young people catch up, keep up, and get ahead.”

Expanding Minds and Opportunities provides a window into how educators, schools, and communities are working together to provide opportunities, develop solutions, and break down barriers to student success. “We hope that all those involved in education can use the research, best practices, and examples in this book to make their programs the best they can be to help more young people reach their maximum potential,” said Peterson.

The book may be ordered through and individual articles will be available for free download at