Friday, April 17, 2015

Delaware County Community College Latino Conference

MEDIA ALERT                                    
April 9, 2015                                                                                                                                                     
College Hosts “Beyond Multiculturalism: Empowering Latino Students and the Community” Conference

(Delaware and Chester Counties, PA)—As part of Delaware County Community College’s commitment to providing access and quality education to Latino students, the College will hold the “Beyond Multiculturalism: Empowering Latino Students and the Community” conference from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Friday, April 24th on the College’s Marple Campus (901 S. Media Line Road, Media, PA, 19063).
This will be the first conference held at the College specifically focused on Latino issues in education and Latino youth leadership and advocacy. It is sponsored by the College’s faculty-led Latino Initiatives and Outreach Network (LION) in collaboration with the College’s student-led Latin Flavor Club. The conference is free and open to the public. Registration is not required, but is requested.
Register online at
Two keynote presentations will occur during the conference. The first keynote presentation, “The Path to College Graduation: Latino Student Success and Concerns” by Dr. Idna Corbett, dean of Undergraduate Student Support Services at West Chester University of Pennsylvania, will focus on the factors influencing the Latino achievement gap in college. The second keynote presentation, “A Conversation with Hernán Guaracao,” publisher of AL DÍA, a Philadelphia-based, Hispanic-owned news media organization, will be during lunch.
In addition, two panels of experts will discuss the effects and factors influencing the Latino achievement gap in college and the importance of youth leadership and institutional support at college campuses. There also will be a panel of Delaware County Community College Latino student leaders who will discuss their experiences at the College and the role of student involvement and leadership in their academic success.
Additional conference participants include: Dr. Jose Cabrales—program manager for the national, multi-site Lumina Latino Student Success effort of Excelencia in Education, a nonprofit group that advocates for Latino students; Gilberto Gonzalez, senior designer creative services at Community College of Philadelphia and host of “Entre Nosotros,” a weekly current affairs cable TV show; Dr. Marisa Pereyra, associate professor of Spanish at Immaculata University and chair of the Global Languages and Cultures Department; and Edna Vidal, a peer mentor at Montgomery County Community College and founder/president of Drops of Love International, a nonprofit group that educates and advocates for people in and from Cali, Colombia.

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The conference also will feature a screening of the 2014 award-winning documentary “Underwater Dreams,” which explores the true story of a team of undocumented Mexican high school students, who, under the guidance of two dedicated science teachers, enter the Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) Center’s International Remotely Operated Vehicles competition, which is sponsored by the National Science Foundation, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Office of Ocean Exploration, and NASA. The four students from Carl Hayden High School in Phoenix, Arizona compete against college teams, including a team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and win first place.
After the screening, students featured in the documentary will participate in a Q & A session via Skype.
About the Latino Initiatives and Outreach Network (LION)
The Latino Initiatives and Outreach Network (LION) is a new organization made up of professors, College administrators and students, who seek to recruit, retain, empower, graduate and advance Latino/Hispanic students at Delaware County Community College. LION is interested in creating volunteer and outreach opportunities in the community and leadership and career development programs, as well as academic support programs at the College. In addition, LION is interested in collaborating with state and local organizations in the community to develop partnerships focused on college accessibility and student learning that complement the academic, personal, career, social and cultural development of Latino/Hispanic students.
About the Latin Flavor Club
The Latin Flavor Club is a student-led group at Delaware County Community College that has been instrumental in building strong connections between students of all racial, ethnic and cultural backgrounds at the College. The Latin Flavor Club provides student mentorship opportunities, as well as organizes social events and fundraisers to raise money for scholarships and to assist College and community organizations.
For more information, contact:
LION Coordinator Fernando Benavidez, Assistant Professor of English, at  (610) 723-1231, or; or LION Coordinator Dr. Jose Francisco Mazenett, Associate Professor of Spanish and French, at (610) 359-5228, or

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Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Updated School Registration Information

From the Upper Darby School District Website:

Student Registration

Due to the concerning outbreaks of communicable illnesses such as Ebola, Influenza, and Enterovirus D68, the Upper Darby School District is taking note of the guidelines of the CDC, PA Dept. of Health, and Delaware County Ebola and Infectious Disease Task Force and is instituting the following precautions to protect the health and welfare of our school community:
  • Students seeking admission to the school district who last resided or have traveled from outside of the country must produce a passport/visa to confirm the date of entry into the country.  Those coming from countries highly affected by the Ebola outbreak will be asked to be in the country for 21 days (the virus’s incubation period according to the CDC) before being admitted into school.
  • Current UDSD students who travel outside of the country will be evaluated on a case by case basis.  Parents should provide travel information to the school principal and should notify the school and provide a doctor’s note if the student returns from travel with a fever or any other sign of illness. 
The district’s response may change as recommendations change from the local, state, and national organizations pertaining to these or other communicable illnesses.  The district’s priority is to keep our students and staff healthy and safe.
Please call 610-352-2400 for an appointment
Registration forms are available at the Central Registration Office or you may download a Complete Registration Packet by clicking here.

Re-registration Requirements for the 2015-16 School Year

Any students in the following areas MUST re-register with the district for the upcoming school year:
  • entering 6th grade at either Beverly Hills Middle School or Drexel Hill Middle School
  • multiple occupancies
  • support affidavits
Please contact the Central Registration Office as soon as possible to ensure that students in the areas mentioned above have been re-registered by June 30, 2015.  For your convenience, those required to re-register may do so at either the Central Registration office or in their elementary home school as per the schedule listed below for kindergarten registration.

Kindergarten Registration Information For the 2015-2016 School Year

Child must be five years of age by August 31, 2015.
Please register your child/children now to avoid the long lines and any delay in starting school.  You can, beginning January 2015, register your child for kindergarten for the 2015-2016 school year.

Registration Dates For Each Area in Upper Darby Township

Week Of:School(s):Special Notes:
January 5 to January 9Garrettford
evening session at Garrettford
on January 7th, 5:30-7:30PM
January 12 to January 16Stonehurst Hills
evening session at Stonehurst
on January 14th, 5:30-7:30PM
January 20 to January 23Make Up Registration for Garrettford and Stonehurst Hills only
January 26 to January 30Aronimink and Primos
evening session at Aronimink on January 28th and
Primos on January 29th, 5:30-7:30PM
February 2 to February 6Highland Park and Charles Kelly
evening session at Highland Park (for both schools)  
on February 4th, 5:30-7:30PM
February 9 to February 13Bywood and Senkow
evening session at Bywood (for both schools)
on February 11th, 5:30-7:30PM
February 17 to February 20Make Up Registration
for Aronimink, Primos, Highland Park, Charles Kelly,
Bywood, and Senkow only
February 23 to February 27Westbrook Park
evening session at Westbrook Park
on February 25th, 5:30-7:30PM
March 2 to March 6Hillcrest
evening session at Hillcrest
on March 4th, 5:30-7:30PM
March 9 to March 13Make Up Registrationfor Westbrook Park and Hillcrest only
Registration for all schools to be completed at Central Registration 601 N. Lansdowne Avenue, Drexel Hill between 7:30 A.M. - 3:00 P.M., Monday through Friday, or on the designated evening session each school building.
Documents that need to be presented at the time of registration are as follows:

For Student

  • Proof of age:  i.e. Birth Certificate, Passport, Baptismal Certificate, Notarized Statement of Age by Parent or Relative, Prior School Records
  • Immunizations required by law:  Child's Immunization Record (from medical office or from prior education records)

For Parent

  • Proof of residency:  i.e. Lease, Deed, Property Tax Bill, Driver's License, State or Federal Documents, Current Utility Bill, Credit Card Bill, Vehicle Registration, Notarized Statement of Residency
  • Parent Registration Statement:  Sworn statement attesting to whether the student has been or is suspended or expelled for offenses involving drugs, alcohol, weapons, infliction of injury, or violence on school property must be provided

Upper Darby School District School Registration Information

Starting in January, you can register your child early for the 2015-2016 School Year.
Please register your child/children now to avoid the long lines and any delay in starting school.
Registration for all schools to be completed at Central Registration 601 N. Lansdowne Avenue, Drexel Hill between 7:30 A.M. - 3:00 P.M., Monday through Friday.

No Registration Will Be Accepted Without All Required Documents

*Your child/children DO NOT need to be present for the registration process
If you have recently moved within the district, a change of address form must be completed and submitted to the Central Registration Office.  This form is available at the Central Registration Office.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Titanoboa: Monster Snake Opens Feb.14 at the Academy of Natural Sciences

Live snakes, like this ball python which is closely related to a boa constrictor, will be part of the Titanoboa: Monster Snake exhibit.
Credit: Mike Servedio/ANS
PHILADELPHIA (Jan. 14, 2014) - Slithering in at 48 feet long and weighing an estimated one-and-a-half tons, the world's largest snake-a realistic replica of it, that is-will be on exhibit at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University starting Saturday, Feb. 14.

From deep underground in a Colombian coal mine, in a layer dating to 65 million years ago, scientists have uncovered remains of the largest snake that ever roamed the planet, Titanoboa cerrejonensis. Measuring 48 feet long and weighing 2,500 pounds, this massive predator grew as long as a school bus and weighed as much as a small car. Twice as long as the longest snake alive today, Titanoboa could crush and devour a crocodile.

Fossil plants and animals found at the site reveal that Titanoboa roamed the earliest known rain forest, teeming with life and dating to the Paleocene, the lost world that followed the demise of the dinosaurs.

"Titanoboa is a bigger, badder boa, and it will simply knock your socks off," says Academy Director of Exhibits Jennifer Sontchi. "The exhibit opens on Valentine's Day, so be sure to bring your main squeeze!"

Titanoboa: Monster Snake, on view through Sunday, April 19, delves into the stories of the discovery, reconstruction and implications of this enormous reptile. Visitors will:

*         Stand eye-to-eye with a full-scale model of this massive predator.

*         Examine model vertebrae to compare Titanoboa with a modern anaconda.

*         Crawl the length of Titanoboa in the Titanoboa Challenge. There also is a shorter crawl-through tunnel for young children.

*         See live snakes from the Academy's collection.

*         Learn about venom, fangs and scales from the educators at the Carts of Curiosity.

*         Enjoy a Smithsonian documentary about Titanoboa in the mini-theater (every hour on the hour)

*         See snake specimens from the Academy's Herpetology Collection.

*         Learn about the important role snakes play in our lives.

There is a $3 fee to enter Titanoboa: Monster Snake in addition to regular museum admission.

The opening weekend, Feb. 14 and 15, coincides with the Academy's annual Paleopalooza<> festival, which features a variety of fun family activities, fossil displays, films, talks, and the chance to meet Academy paleontologists. The 1 p.m. live animal show that weekend is "Snakes Alive!," which showcases some of the museum's live snakes, plus close-ups on a giant screen. For details about Paleopalooza, visit

On Thursday, Feb. 26, "Anaconda" will be the feature presentation at the Academy's popular Mega-Bad Movie Night.<> For information and tickets, visit

Titanoboa: Monster Snake is a collaboration of the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, the Florida Museum of Natural History, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and the Smithsonian Channel.


Founded in 1812, the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University is a leading natural history museum dedicated to advancing research, education, and public engagement in biodiversity and environmental science.

HOURS: Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; Saturday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. ADMISSION: $15.95 adults; $13.95 children 3-12, seniors, college students, and military personnel; free for members and children under 3. PHONE: 215-299-1000


5 Reasons Kids Should Play Organized Sports

Entrepreneurs & Former Pro Athlete Explain
Life-long Lessons Learned in Youth Competition

In the past 30 years, obesity has more than doubled in young children and quadrupled in adolescents, potentially leading to a host of chronic diseases later in life, according to the Centers for Disease Control. 

Conversely, the CDC reports that regular physical activity provides a long list of physical benefits for children, but that’s not all. Daily exercise also promotes mental and emotional well-being that includes self-esteem.

“By now, I don’t think anyone is surprised that regular exercise is good for children and inactivity is places them at risk for illnesses later in life, but when you take a moment to consider the data in-depth for children who exercise and play organized sports, the details of a child’s future come to life,” says Danyel Surrency Jones, president of Power To Give and co-founder of Powerhandz Inc., (, a company specializing in athletic training products to improve performance in baseball, basketball and football.

Danyel and her business partner and husband, Darnell Jones, a former professional basketball player who also co-founded Powerhandz, want kids in their community and beyond to benefit from the values learned from youth sports. That’s why they created the Power To Give program, which promotes positive development.

“We believe in the power of sports to change a kid’s life for the better,” says Darnell, who lists five significant benefits of youth sports.
•  Cultivates a positive attitude: Sports are demanding. Come game time, a young athlete wouldn’t last long with a negative mindset. “Practice is no cakewalk either,” Darnell says. “As adults, we understand the need to hype ourselves before hitting the gym. The rewarding feeling we get walking out from the gym is similar to what young people feel after a game or tough practice.”

•  Offers a sense of accomplishment, confidence and self-esteem: As the CDC noted, simply being physically active builds self-esteem. We are physical beings who are not meant to sit in front of a videogame for several consecutive hours. “Again, if you’re a physically active adult, you feel that sense of accomplishment in outdoing your last performance at the gym,” Danyel says. “Kids feel a similar way learning new skills and succeeding in a game, except more so.” 

•  Builds better peer relationships: Kids want to fit in, but it’s not always easy. Organized sports hurdles the high wall of social awkwardness so many children feel. Team sports such as baseball, basketball and football demand participants to work together for a common goal, which is a valuable lesson some adults still haven’t learned while interacting at work.

•  More restraint in avoiding risky behavior: Ideally, parents can get their children engaged – in anything that’s productive, really. Bored or disengaged children have a way of getting into trouble. A student is less likely to misbehave in class or break the law if it means getting kicked off the team of a sport they love.

•  Greater family attachment and frequent interactions with parents: Famous athletes say it all the time, “Thanks Mom. Thanks for driving me to and from practice, and thanks for showing up at the games.” And that doesn’t even count helping a child with actual practice – playing catch, squaring off one-on-one, etc.

About Danyel Surrency Jones and Darnell Jones
Danyel Surrency Jones is COO and Co-Founder of Powerhandz Inc., (, which specializes in performance-enhancing training products for athletes. Danyel is a business leader who led sales and marketing departments for over 17 years, sat on non-for-profit boards and invested in early stage companies. Darnell Jones is an entrepreneur and investor, athlete and sales professional. Before cofounding Powerhandz, he was a team captain and academic all-conference basketball player at Mesa State College before he went on to play for the Utah Eagles of the former Continental Basketball Association. Danyel and Darnell created the Power To GiveBuilding Character Through Athletics, which help fund athletic programs in financially challenged communities.

Thursday, January 15, 2015


[mediaalert]ROGERS & COWAN

Los Angeles – January 14, 2015 – Soledad O'Brien takes one of America's most challenging conversations on the road as her ongoing Black in America series brings the explosive issue of police brutality to college campuses.
Black in America 2015 gathers academics and experts, students, and community members of all races and politics to discuss their personal stories of how policing impacts their lives. The award-winning journalist and philanthropist presents a detailed examination of the facts behind community policing, racial profiling, controversial crime reduction tactics, and arrest quotas. And, we see the shocking videos that show how a war between civil rights and crime reduction ‎is unfurling on America's streets.
The multi-city tour gives audiences - from Miami to Houston to Massachusetts - an inside look at the latest installment of O'Brien's Black in America documentary series: Black & Blue. The gripping hour aired on CNN just as protests erupted on American streets. The story begins with shocking exclusive footage of Eric Garner choked to death in NY, then uses graphic videos and incisive interviews to show how the lives of young men are fractured by aggressive policing. One is a Latino man who is beaten by police when he stops to watch them make a random arrest - even as cameras roll. The other, a young man feeling the emotional pain of being stopped and frisked by officers 100 times for no apparent reason. The documentary film also shares the perspective of black NYPD officers who believe the "stop and frisk" tactic fights crime and keeps their communities safe. 
Does crime fall when people live in fear of the police? Is it worth the price? Join the conversation on the Black in America 2015 Tour.
To view the official “Black in America: Black & Blue” trailer, click here.  
Soledad will open up the floor to the college community, socio-political and luminary panelists including St. Louis, Missouri’s 21st Ward Alderman Antonio French, Economist, Author and Political Commentator Dr. Julianne Maleaux, political and civic leader, as well as former Chief Executive Officer of the NAACP, Benjamin Jealous, politically and socially conscious rapper, author and producer Chuck of Public Enemy, socio-political comedian W. Kamau Bell, and more. To close the evening, guests will be granted a meet and greet opportunity.
"Black in America is about Americans talking about the uncomfortable issue of race, about opening the floor to new perspectives, problems and the powerful experiences of regular people. This is a forum for the conversation America is ready to have -- why do so many black Americans fear the very people that are supposed to protect them?" -- Soledad O'Brien
The tour will commence at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, PA on February 3rd, crossing the eastern and central United States to conclude at Florida International University in Miami on February 25th. The official tour routing is available on
To view the official Black in America 2015 Tour trailer, please click here. For more information, please visit
Join the conversation in the following dates and cities:
DATE                                                     UNIVERSITY                                                       VENUE
Tuesday, February 3rd                    Bucknell University                                         The Weiss Center
Wednesday, February 4th                    University of Massachusetts Boston       Campus Center Ballroom
Tuesday, February 10th                           Purdue University                                           Elliot Hall of Music
Wednesday, February 11th                Pennsylvania State University                    Eisenhower Auditorium
Thursday, February 12th                         Bloomsburg University                                  Carver Hall
Tuesday, February 17th                  University of Georgia                                     Tate Student Center Grand Hall
Tuesday, February 24th                  University of Houston                                    Student Union
Wednesday, February 25th           Florida International University                 WUC Ballrooms

**O’Brien will be available for select interviews in advance of her appearance in each market. If interested, see below contact info.**
About Soledad O’Brien
Soledad O’Brien is an award winning journalist, documentarian, news anchor, producer and television personality.  At the forefront of the biggest breaking news stories of the past two decades, O’Brien is one of the most sought-after journalists of current day. In June 2013, O’Brien launched Starfish Media Group, a multi-platform media production and distribution company, dedicated to uncovering and producing empowering stories that take a challenging look at the often divisive issues of race, class, wealth, poverty and opportunity, through personal stories. She is the originator of the highly successful documentary series “Black in America” and “Latino in America” which will continue being produced under Starfish Media Group.  Through SMG, O’Brien also contributes additional programming to CNN, HBO Real Sports and Al Jazeera America.
About Starfish Media Group
Starfish Media Group is an integrated media production company and distributor, dedicated to uncovering and producing empowering stories. SMG takes a challenging look at often divisive issues of race, class, wealth, opportunity, poverty through personal stories.  Founded by award-winning journalist and multifaceted broadcaster Soledad O'Brien, Starfish Media Group uniquely resonates with today's diverse global audience through impactful topics that define our time.