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October 2018  
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In this edition of ConnectED:

  • Show Your Support - Vote YES on the Half-Penny Education Referendum
  • Take Stock in Children - New Student Orientation
  • Join us in Celebrating Excellence in Education with a Night in Paris
  • Check out the Newly Designed Support Education Specialty Plate!
  • Change a Life - Mentor a Student
  • Get Involved - Volunteer at the Teaching Tools Store
  • HEF Spotlight - Mike McCollum 
Show Your Support - Vote YES on the
Half-Penny Education Referendum

No teacher or student should have to teach/learn in a building with leaky roofs and no AC. Election day is tomorrow, so now is our final chance to show our support for teachers and students

We urge you to go out and vote YES! 

Remember to vote from the bottom up - the Referendum is the last item on the ballot and should not be confused with Amendment 3

Click  here   to see the specific schools and projects your half-penny will fund. 

Take Stock in Children - 
New Student Orientation

Take Stock in Children is a program that provides a unique opportunity for students from low-income families to escape the cycle of poverty through education.  Every year, we welcome a new group of students into our Take Stock in Children  program during the New Student Orientation.  These are students who have not only demonstrated financial need, but have maintained a GPA of 2.5 or higher and plan to strive for excellence in their academics. 

On September 26th, 79 new Take Stock in Children scholars attended their New Student Orientation and were officially enrolled in the program! Students and families learned more about program expectations and were able to meet their assigned College Success Coaches.
Take Stock in Children Pledge 2018

Once all the scholarship contracts were signed, students then took their 
pledge - promising to maintain academic excellence and pursue 
their goals.

We are very proud of our new scholars and their promise to strive for excellence! 

Click the thumbnail to watch a short clip of the Take Stock in Children Pledge.

Join us in Celebrating Excellence in Education with a Night in Paris!

Mark your calendar for the  2019 Excellence in Education Awards on
January 24th, 2019 at the  Straz Center for the Performing Arts . In honor of Hillsborough County Public Schools' top educators and support staff, this Night in Paris will celebrate the nominees, finalists and winners of the Ida S. Baker Diversity Educator of the Year, Instructional Support Employee of the Year and Teacher of the Year awards. 

Click here for more information or to purchase a ticket.
Purchase of a Newly Designed License Plate Means Support for HEF!

New tag design, same great cause! With the purchase or renewal of one of these Support Education
specialty  plates, $20 goes directly back to support students and teachers in our community. 
Some of the education programs that will benefit include: 
  • Classroom innovation
  • Education enrichment programs
  • Teacher support and recognition
  • Additional support and mentorship for at-risk students
  • School supplies for students in-need
  • Student scholarships 
Click here to learn more! 

Change a Life - Mentor a Student

Looking for a way to give back? 
Consider becoming a mentor to an HCPS middle or high school student!

Take Stock in Children pairs at-risk students with caring, responsible adults who will provide emotional support and foster a positive self-image

Click here to view the areas of the county where we need mentors the most. Could be right near your job or home!

Just one hour of your time per week, can make a LIFETIME of difference!

To get matched with a student for the 2018-19 school year, contact Anna Laird  at  or (813)463-4283.

Get Involved - Volunteer at the 
Teaching Tools Store

We love our volunteers and we couldn't do it without you!

To schedule a time  to volunteer, contact Joan  Torres-Lopez

Mike McCollum | Chief Advancement Officer


Responsibilities include:  Leadership over the foundation's development and marketing efforts

Time at HEF: 1 year 

Who was your favorite teacher and why?
My favorite teacher was Mrs. Stephenson. She was my 4th grade teacher at Madison Elementary in Columbus, Ohio. I will never forget her. I've had many awesome teachers during my formative years, but Mrs. Stephenson really made me fall in love with learning. She had an ability to make any subject fun, and made me feel like I truly was special to her. She really felt almost like a second mom. 

What was your first job?
My first job was a bagger at Kroger Grocery Store. It was really a great job because  it's there where I really learned the importance of customer service and relating to people from all walks of life. 
If you could have a super power, what would it be?
Create money out of thin air (of course the development guy says that right!). But I would really choose that superpower so that exorbitant support could given to all of the wonderful programs and initiatives that are helping people in need....including HEF!

What was your most memorable vacation?
My most memorable vacation was cruise I took to the Bahamas. It was on that trip where I proposed to my wife, Sarah.