As students file into a freshman algebra class at Bowie High School they begin to notice that something is different. The round tables in the center of the room have folded tent cards with job titles such as “Resource manager”and “Task manager.” The outer tables in the room each have a tower of wood blocks. “Miss, we’re playing Jenga?” asks Amber Macias, a student in teacher Celeste Cano’s algebra class.
El Paso’s poor air quality is driving down school performance for children in neighborhoods with high rates of airborne metabolic disrupting chemicals, researchers say. In a study published in the September issue of the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, researchers at the University of Texas at El Paso and Northeastern University looked at school performance among fourth and fifth-grade public school children in El Paso. They found that children exposed to higher levels of airborne toxins had lower grade point averages,
Related: Air quality one of biggest threats on U.S., Mexico border
Study author Stephanie Clark-Reyna, a second-year doctoral student at Northeastern University who attended UTEP as an undergraduate, said she hopes the research will have an impact on how El Paso addresses its unique air quality issues. “Air quality in El Paso is concerning because of the trucking industry. Last time I looked it up, something like 800,000 trucks passed through a single port of entry in one year,” Clark-Reyna said.
Starting a business can be a risky and tedious endeavor. Yet six Bowie High School seniors have taken on the challenge with a donated school bus, the support of school officials and assorted contributions from local businesses. If all goes according to plan, business seniors Sophia Morales, Veronica Rodriguez, Andres Valdez, Joseph Gutierrez, Sergio Marrufo, and Sisco Gonzalez, all age 17, will soon be selling healthy food options out of the Oso Good Food Truck to raise money for college scholarships. The student-run food truck business, slated to hit the streets in January, is a partnership with Bowie’s International Business Academy in partnership with EPISD, El Paso Custom Food Trucks, Bowie Garden Resources, and now Whole Foods Market. The six seniors enrolled in the International Business Academy at Bowie produced the business plan.
The highly accomplished UTEP Political Science Professor, Dr. Kathleen Staudt, was recently honored at a Women’s History Conference on campus for more than two decades of work and commitment to community engagement, mentorship to students and vast scholarship on border issues. Staudt is currently working on her 20th academic book about international border politics, and says she has no intention of slowing down any time soon. She said from her office at Benedict Hall that she was delighted to finally have a chance to make her legacy speech. “It was nice to have a legacy speech before I retired,” she joked. She added that retirement will not come any time soon: “Of course I think about retirement and I probably will once I reach 70,” said Staudt, who is in her 60’s.
Daniel Bueno, estudiante de la preparatoria Irvin de El Paso, se hizo acreedor a una beca presidencial de $24,000 para cuatro años de educación superior en cualquier universidad del país. A pesar de recibir tentadoras ofertas de prestigiosas universidades como Harvard y Yale, Bueno, de 18 años, ha decidido optar por la Universidad de Texas en El Paso. Explica que en la escuela de su cuidad natal, que cuenta con 25,000 alumnos, recibirá una educación de calidad. La escuela fronteriza ofrece muchas oportunidades a los alumnos hispanos para triunfar y culminar sus metas profesionales. El piensa estudiar contabilidad.
After hearing about the international Little Free Library project, El Paso school librarian Lisa Lopez found local partners to bring the movement to this border community. There are now more than 100 public boxes stocked with books throughout the city to encourage literacy efforts. Borderzine reporter Andrea Macias has the details of the program in this video report.For more information on the Little Free Library project visit littlefreelibrary.org
Borderzine is accepting applications from El Paso area high school juniors and seniors for full scholarships to attend the 14th annual Journalism in July (JIJ) workshop at the University of Texas at El Paso. The dates are July 10 – 16. Fill out the application form here. Over the last 13 years, the workshop has provided journalism training to more than 200 students from high schools in the El Paso–Ciudad Juárez–Las Cruces area. A goal of the workshop is to encourage high school students of diverse backgrounds who are already interested in journalism to pursue future studies and careers in news media and communication. The fast paced one-week training includes a variety of hands on workshops in basic journalism reporting and writing skills, media ethics and digital video, audio and photo production.
Yale University was founded in 1701. Over 250 years later, in the early 1970s, the first Latinos stepped foot on the prestigious campus. For these Latinos, Yale was a Sisyphean challenge — a sea of unfamiliar affluence never before traversed by Latinos. They soon realized the only way to survive the resulting ostracism and isolation would be to ban together. As a result of their determination to succeed, today, there are approximately 5,000 Yale Latino Alumni. The Early Years
Former Yale Associate Dean, Rosalinda Garcia, explained, “Most of the first Latinos who went to Yale had a very hard time. One, it was a racist climate, and two, these students were brought onto campus and they weren’t given any resources to succeed.”
Garcia describes the first “big” class of Latinos – it had a total of five (in a class of thousands), and it was common for them to be called derogatory names around campus.
As an eighth grader at Clint Middle School, 13-year-old BobbiAnn Owen decided she would apply to an early college program that is part of Clint High School that allows students to obtain an associate’s degree by the time they graduate from 12th grade. She was delighted when she made the cut. She was one of 70 students accepted to the selective and demanding program out of 159 applicants. Clint school district has 2,907 high school students and all the benefit of applying for Clint Early College Academy before their freshman year. BobbiAnn now, half a year into the program, is making personal sacrifices to excel and remain in the program.
EL PASO — As part of Hazing Prevention Week 2015 at UTEP, students played a game in which they placed red or green pellets in boxes containing different potential scenarios: red if they thought it was not hazing and green if they thought that it was. Sometimes the scenarios fell into the “gray area” for participants, highlighting one of the biggest problems of hazing for some students – knowing when the line has been crossed. Delecia McPherson, president of the National Panhellenic Council at UTEP, said the scenario game and other exercises were great ways to engage students in discussions about activities that may humiliate, degrade, abuse or endanger group members or initiates – even if they seem willing to participate. “I believe my knowledge on hazing has better informed students on what is considered hazing and how we can question situations that may draw a fine line on the subject,” she said. National Hazing Prevention Week ran from September 21 through the 25.