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LSA 45 Dives Into Cultural, Socio-Economic Diversity For Be Smarter Day

The LSA 45 “Be Smarter” day kicked off with a pep rally that included NEISD’s Madison High School drumline and none other than the San Antonio’s Spurs COYOTE! Breakfast from locally-owned Scratch Kitchen was the perfect starter for the morning announcements.

The day, primarily located at Morgan’s Wonderland in San Antonio, focused on different aspects of education with a wide range of talented and engaging speakers:

Ryan Lugalia-Hollon, Executive Director of UP Partnership shared the idea of “unlocking potential together,” where data-driven insights shed light on how each LSA member can have a unique and direct impact when designing solutions for students. Morgan Jones, Sr Manager of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging Strategy for Spurs Sports & Entertainment, led LSAers up and around for an activity that showed the impacts of communication and teamwork when fundraising for individual school districts, building on the morning’s theme of transforming the systems that feed into the education system.

A pre-lunch panel entitled “Higher education perspectives” shared the challenges and impact of the pandemic enrollment, student success, and engagement:

  • Moderator: Jonathan Gurwitz, Vice President – KGB Texas
  • Panelist: Dr. Mike Flores, Chancellor – Alamo Colleges District
  • Panelist: Jason Straughan, CEO – Code Up
  • Panelist: Dr. Samuel Lee Beaumont, VP of Enrollment and Support Services – Hallmark University

A delicious lunch was served from the San Antonio SPURS Food Truck before taking the class to the Career and Technical Education Center (CTEC) for an afternoon of exploring how NEISD offers their students the opportunity to become college and career ready by creating instructional settings that replicate real-world experiences, knowledge, and skills. Riding to and from CTEC in actual NEISD school buses really gave the “field trip” a fun and interesting look into the future of our workforce.

Before the day ended with HOLT CAT sponsored Happy Hour, both Gordon Hartman (CEO, Gordon Hartman Family Foundation) and Peter J. Holt (CEO/General Manager, HOLT CAT) shared a few words on not only the importance of all levels and types of education, but their personal stories of how and why they’ve dedicated so much of their personal time, talent, and treasure in the space.

The day’s sponsors included: Spurs Sports & Entertainment, Valero, HOLT CAT, Sharkmatic Advertising, Northeast Independent School District, NatureSweet Tomatoes, Silver Eagle Beverages, Plains Capital Bank, ANG Trial Lawyers, Girls Scouts of Southwest Texas, Restore Education, The YMCA, and Trinity University.

It was a fun day of learning and connecting with a call to action for all the community leaders in LSA to engage in legacy, service, and action so that we can all #BeSmarter.

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