2017 Wrap-up—A Few of My Favorite Posts…

2017 Wrap-up — A Few of My Favorite Posts…

In preparation for writing one of my last BE Smart posts of the year, I looked back over several to select a few favorites.

Haven’t read these yet? Then cap off the year by devouring these (mostly) encouraging articles. They may give you some insight into goals you’d like to set for yourself in the New Year.

  1. Before He Was Named a Rhodes Scholar, This Temple Alum Graduated from Community College

This post tells the inspiring story of Hazim Hardeman, one of the few Rhodes Scholars—if not the only one—who graduated from community college. Hardeman’s story illustrates how the right challenges and support can help bright, underserved students excel—a theme I turn to again and again in BE Smart.

  1. ‘Fighting for the Right to Fight’ Tells the African American World War II Story

As I wrote in this post, I’ve always been fascinated by World War II because my parents talked a lot about the effects of the war on their young lives. This article explains how teachers can register their classes for a free interactive webcast that will air Feb. 22, which is Digital Learning Day. Read the post; then sign up today!

7.–10. Young Black Men Excel series:

In the Foreign Service of the U.S. State Department

In the Senate Page Program

In the Peace Corps

In Graduate School Abroad

This series profiles four young (all under 30) black men, each of whom is doing or has done something exceptional and unique: One is a U.S. diplomat in the Foreign Service; another served in the U.S. Senate as a page; another is in the Peace Corps; and another earned a master’s degree overseas.

  1. National Science Foundation’s REU Program Seeks Diverse Candidates

Part of the mission of BE Smart is to inform our audience about work and learning opportunities they might not otherwise know about. When I learned about the REU program and how it’s seeking diverse candidates, I had to write about it.

  1. Educare Lays the Foundation for Children’s Learning

This story struck me because it tells how a young mother in great need encountered Educare—and how the cycle of poverty and need has the chance to be broken in her family in this generation. Every year, 1 million children enter kindergarten unprepared. Educare, a program of the Ounce of Prevention Fund, is working to change that.

  1. Oliver Scholars Changes Lives

I spent a wonderful evening at the Oliver Scholars gala this past June, where I was thrilled to meet current and former scholars. This program selects bright students of color and positions them to succeed at the best private schools. But tucked in this post is the remarkable story of Ryan Speedo Green, the renowned bass-baritone opera singer. He would have never been chosen as an Oliver Scholar—which raises questions about the many C or troubled students who could excel if given the right opportunities.

  1. Outstanding Chicago Apprenticeship Program Changes Lives

This piece shines a light on how the business community can effect change in the lives of young people who don’t have a lot of options. And this isn’t charity—the business also benefits. I love how the young man in this story took the initiative to find this program—and how he has excelled in it.

  1. Harvard to Do (Yet Another) Preschool Study

If you follow me on Twitter (and you should: @robinwhitegoode) you may have noticed that I tweet this story out a bit as an In Case You Missed It, although it isn’t exactly an encouraging article. High-quality preschool can be especially critical to the success of low-income children (see Educare piece). But our country has other priorities.

And my No. 1 favorite post….

  1. This Ecologist Is Not Afraid of Bears—She Traps Them for Research

Wynn-Grant overcame an underperforming high school and the fear of math to excel in college. She is now one of the few female African American conservation scientists around. Read her story and be inspired to overcome your fears in 2018.

Happy reading, and tweet me your ideas for education coverage next year!