Community rallies to support students

Most people have heard the phrase “It takes a village to raise a child.” In Ely, there have recently been a number of community members who have contributed to the education of students at White Pine High School.

These contributions come in a number of ways — some financial, some through time, some through donations, some through all of these.

Financially, a number of local employers have dug into their pocketbooks to enhance the school’s technology infrastructure. Barrick and Mt. Wheeler Power were among the first to do so, each donating $10,000 towards updating computers in the WPHS Library.

Patricia Fua, WPHS librarian, created a vision of reconfiguring the library to be a more open technology center. She shared this vision with Barrick and Mt. Wheeler, which agreed the library should be a center of learning in the school. They supported the transformation by authorizing the donations, which were used to purchase wide screen, wireless all-in-one computers.

Not to be outdone, Midway Gold chipped in another $15,000-plus to create a second technology hub. The company purchased another 24 all-in-one units because there was such a demand in the library that it could not accommodate all of the teachers and students who wanted to use it.  The Midway Technology Center was born through this effort.

The contributions to technology did not stop there, however. The Spring Valley Wind Farm felt so strongly about technology related learning in the school that they submitted another $10,000 to create a mobile laptop lab.  This lab contains 16 laptops on a cart that charges the laptops. The cart can be wheeled from classroom to classroom to support the needs of smaller groups.

Another type, and just as important, of assistance is that of time. Recently, many members of the community agreed to assist the Senior Achievement classes with mock interviews. Mock interviews allow WPHS students to interact with an adult for the purpose of receiving feedback.

Business leaders in the community donate their time to meet individually with a number of students. During this interaction, the adult is able to ask specific questions, provide corrective feedback, and coach the student on how to be prepared for the real interview.
This is a major way that WPHS students learn the Employability Skills necessary to be ready for college and career.
A number of community partners have stepped up to donate supplies. Robinson Nevada Mining hosted a delicious tailgate party at a football game early in the school year. Their employees spent time cooking burgers, pouring sodas, and chatting with students and parents. The company also provided the school with hundreds of notebooks, writing utensils, and other classroom supplies. At the Homecoming game, Midway Gold hosted a tailgate party for all of the students who had participated in the Homecoming parade.
The White Pine High School faculty, administration and staff wish to thank all of the business people, parents, leaders, friends, and supporters of education—those named in this article and those not—for contributing their efforts to help students deepen their learning. Thank you!

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