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JA program offers different kind of lesson to Carnegie Elementary students

| Monday, May 20, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Bella Wyrick, 7, a second-grader at Carnegie Elementary School develops her own community, learning the importance of businesses and jobs during a junior achievement program Friday, May 17 sponsored by Hefren-Tillotson.
Ben Montgomery of Hefren-Tillotson helps Carnegie Elementary School second-grader Brady Holderbaum build his own community, learning the importance of businesses and jobs during a junior achievement program Friday, May 17 sponsored by Hefren-Tillotson.
Carnegie Elementary School 2nd graders Manjeeta Pakwal, 8, (right) helps Anthony Turachak, 7, with his project during a junior achievement program Friday, May 17 sponsored by Hefren-Tillotson.

Volunteers from Junior Achievement visited Carnegie Elementary on Friday to offer a different kind of lesson to students.

The organization, which works with students to teach them how to be economically successful, held daylong workshops about economics, entrepreneurship, profit-making and financial planning. Employees from Heffron Tillotson led the workshops.

Heffron Tillotson CEO Kim Fleming worked with sixth-grade students to set up a mock fast-food business in a foreign country. Issues the students worked through included embargoes, tariffs, politics and the country's culture.

Fifth-grade students learned about profit-making and margins when looking at enterprise opportunities.

Second-grade students worked with Janine Hauck to learn how a community works, from elected officials to community businesses. They talked about the role government plays in the community and how it affects the residents.

Amusing award

A team of four students from Carlynton High School who received an award at the Carnegie Science Center's Chain Reaction Contraption Contest in November finally got to take advantage of their award Friday.

By receiving the award for best execution, sponsored by Kennywood in West Mifflin, the team received a behind-the-scenes tour of the park, along with a day of riding coasters and carousels.

Andy Quinn, director of community relations, gave the students a rundown of the park's history and evolution from a picnic park to the amusement park it is today.

The students are Grant Schuler, Phillip Meighan, Peter Muszalski and Logan Schuler.

Generous gift

A former Crafton pastor has created an endowment fund for Crafton Elementary through The Pittsburgh Foundation.

The Rev. Edward Bowen, formerly of the United Presbyterian Church in Crafton for 12 years, bestowed the endowment upon the school on the heels of a cancer diagnosis after his move to Huntington, W.Va., last year.

The endowment, a one-time gift of $250,000, came as a surprise educators at the school.

“We were completely overwhelmed when we were told the amount of the donation, Crafton Elementary Principal Jacie Maslyk said. “Some of us had tears in our eyes”

Bowen said he became close with students and staff after he created tutoring programs and after-school activities for the children and they, in turn, held food drives and performed other community service projects.

“Crafton Elementary School and its PTA has been a significant part of my life,” he wrote. “Through physically separated from Crafton, I wanted to continue to play a supportive role.”

After meeting with the foundation and Bowen in March, school officials learned the school will receive 5 percent of the endowment each year, with an additional $10,000 in the first six years.

Bowen said he hopes the fund will benefit the school for many years.

“Especially when I learned of my diagnosis,” he said, “I wanted to take steps to ensure that my connection with the school and community will continue beyond my lifetime.”

Winning writing

A second-grader at Carnegie Elementary received an honorable mention in a PBS writing contest.

Rebecca Walter received the award from the PBS Kids GO! Writers Contest for her story “Scooter's Dig Through Time.”

Walter was honored May 4 at WQED's Fred Rogers Studio in Pittsburgh's Oakland neighborhood. The 22 first-, second- and third-place and honorable-mention winners were able to see their stories produced into a puppet play called “Recipe for a Clue.” The play was performed by Pittsburgh Puppet Works. More than 1,600 stories were submitted by children in grades kindergarten through third.

In other news, the district has changed the dates of some of its upcoming school board meetings. They will be June 3 and 27, July 1 and 15 and August 5 and 19. All meetings are at 7:30 p.m. at the library at Carlynton Junior-Senior High School, 435 Kings Highway. The dates for future meetings will be set in the coming months.

Megan Guza is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5810 or

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