Maybe our favorite event every year is bringing together our Forman Scholars for our annual Scholars’ Dinner.
This year’s event was in mid-June at the Broadway United Methodist Church in downtown Salem City, and it was maybe our best yet. Nearly all our scholars were there to celebrate, including our newest recipients, Ayanna Chapman, Elise Davenport, Destiny Green, Emily Hill and Arianna Lapp.
The event’s much more than a dinner, but is really an interactive learning event for everyone involved. Each of the scholars had a chance to talk to all their fellow scholars, along with educators, community leaders, parents and friends.
There’s a new bicycle repair shop in Salem City this summer, but it has a bigger purpose than fixing flat tires and broken chains.
Instead, this operation is working to keep Salem students in school, and give them skills that will also translate into getting and keeping good jobs.
It’s called Salem Youth Empowerment Services, or Salem Y.E.S., and it’s run by Stand Up for Salem. Our foundation made a $25,000 grant to fund the program this year, and eventually the organizers hope to make it a sustainable annual initiative.
A lot of people in the greater Salem community have had a chance to meet our staff at this point, but we thought we’d offer a little introduction of our team members for those who haven’t yet.
First up is Rick Wilson, our Director of Scholarships. Rick has more than 30 years of experience as a public school teacher and principal, and he currently offers all kinds of support for our scholars as they navigate college.
Rick has an energetic spirit and genuine concern for current and new Forman Scholars, which must be experienced in person. Just one example is that he had them cracking up at the aforementioned Scholar’s Dinner earlier this summer.
Respecting Rick comes easily as he puts his heart and soul into his work and takes the necessary time to get to know each and every Forman Scholar. Rick builds solid relationships with each scholar, from talking to them regularly on the phone, to visiting them on campus.
One scholar said he was often her sounding board in her final semester as she struggled with chemistry classes. She credits Rick’s ability to calm her fears in a fun, yet supportive manner as one of the secrets to her success during the tough times.
That’s not an accident. Rick takes pride in learning the best way to support each individual scholar’s quest for success and his natural ability to advocate for their best interest is invaluable.
If you ever want to reach out to Rick, you always can by emailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org. We hope you get to meet him in person soon!
Salem City Celebrates Block Party
There is nothing like the warmth of an early summer evening to draw neighbors, friends and family members downtown to mark the beginning of the season.
As a proud sponsor of the annual Salem City Block Party, the Forman S. Acton Educational Foundation joined in on the fun, hosting the South Jersey Robotics and Lego Clubs, which brought along a robot that played catch with passers-by.
Foundation representatives were on hand to answer questions, enroll children in the Acorn Fund, and to connect parents and their children to the various summer programs offered to Salem residents and Salem City School District students.
Acorn Fund Continues to Grow Each
The Acorn Fund is an initiative to create and invest in college savings accounts for Salem City’s youth. Any child who lives or attends public school in Salem City is eligible to receive an account with funding from the foundation to support their education. All you have to do is sign up.