This year's College Goal Sunday will be on February 21, 2016. Completing the FAFSA is one of the most important steps in preparing for college. During College Goal Sunday, financial aid experts from West Virginia’s colleges volunteer their time to help you complete this important form and to answer any other financial aid questions you may have. There are 25 locations in West Virginia participating this year. Stop by any location, anytime between 1 and 4 p.m. On average, it takes about 30 minutes to complete the FAFSA. Click here for a list of locations and what to bring.
Turn Your Passion Into Action!
The 2016 Bezos Scholars Program at the Aspen Institute will be offering 12 top high school juniors an all expense paid trip to the Aspen Ideas Festival in Aspen, Colorado. The Aspen Ideas Festival will be held from June 25-July 1. The week will be full of seminars and meetings with global leaders. Previous Scholars have met with Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O-Connor, Twitter co-founder Biz Stone and New York TImes columnist David Brooks. If selected, the student will be accompanied by an outstanding teacher at JMHS. The deadline to apply is February 16. The application is lengthy, so students should start applying today. For more information, see the guidance office or visit BezosFamilyFoundation.org/Scholars.
The Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources is hosting its annual essay contest. The contest is open to students in grades 9-12. Essays will be judged by Statler College Ambassadors on the quality of writing, with a focus on student's main idea and creativity. There are two student divisions based on grade. The prompts for each division are listed below. Prizes and awards will be given at the county, regional and state levels. Senior winners may receive a WVU Statler College scholarship. Essays must be submitted before Friday, February 12th at 5:00pm. For more details go to http://statler.wvu.edu/outreach/essaycomp.php.
9th/10th Writing Prompt: Discuss an engineering achievement that has impacted the state of West Virginia.
11th/12th Writing Prompt: Pick an engineering discipline offered at WVU (mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, etc.) and discuss career opportunities for this type of engineer within the state of West Virginia
Written by Antonella Blanco, 2015-16 Inspired Leader from James Monroe High School
I had the pleasure of attending another Day at the Legislature with Inspire WV, second to my experience as one of the seventeen speakers of the first annual Girls' Day at the Legislature. It's always a privilege to have the opportunity to share ideas and topics with people who have my same interests at heart.
West Virginia students are the best and brightest in the nation, and it is a privilege to be among the young men and women who attend these events to assure that their voices are being heard. Civic engagement is not necessarily considered 'cool' in the flow of trends; yet, it is one of the things I stress most about. I feel so obliged to live in a state that has representatives that genuinely care about what we think needs to be done. Our representatives hear us out, and they assure us that they are there to do what we want them to do. I have never seen a state that has such involved representatives and students. West Virginia is simply such a special state, with such special people, and it is only right if young men and women like me take charge to assure that we have a better West Virginia. There is so much potential within the crevices of our thoughts, that, all we have to do is think them aloud.
Youth Day at the Legislature was an opportunity for me to speak to one of my representatives of the small border county of Monroe. Senator Ron Miller was an absolute joy to speak to, sharing many of my concerns about my state, and assuring that people are moving towards giving me answers to my questions, and solving the problems I believe we have. It's so important for citizens to feel acknowledged when they feel something must be addressed. In my small county, we do not have large corporations diversifying our economy, we don't have bustling cities, and we rarely have any disturbances. Yet, we have so many special, intelligent, and dedicated people; it is truly an honor to be from Monroe County. Although we are a quaint county, we do face our issues of job retention, economic diversity, and environmental preservation issues. I was able to comfortably and confidently address all of these issues with Senator Miller, and other representatives that I had the privilege of speaking to, including Bill Laird and John O'Neal.
West Virginia's civic engagement is on a steady rise thanks to the help of motivated and civically involved young men and women. With my personal discretion, I can tell you I have two friends running for a position in West Virginia's government, and they have yet to graduate high school. It is such a privilege to be able to witness these things, and to be a part of the movement towards keeping West Virginia almost heaven. I encourage any and all to attend days like this at the capital. Get involved within your communities; rise to the state level; reach out to the federal level representatives. West Virginia needs your help to keep it almost heaven.
Judy Kee-Smith with the WV Higher Education Department will be at JMHS on February 3rd from 12:00-5:00 to assist students and parents with completing the FAFSA. Call the guidance department to make an appointment today! This free service can be very beneficial to students and parents, particularly those who are completing the form for the first time.