June 2018
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Take Stock seniors attend workshop
Carlos Garcia-Perez (right), recipient of the Butler Laptop Scholarship, with David Maldoff of Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig LLP.

On Monday June 4, 68  Take Stock in Children  graduating seniors attended a Senior Workshop   at the University of Tampa.
The Senior Workshop prepared students to utilize their Florida Prepaid
Scholarships.  Students received information on their college plans, financial aid, and tips for success in college The event also answered questions related to their college plans, and informed students about how to fully use their scholarships and financial aid.   The  graduating seniors received their Take Stock  i n Children medals and a College Survival  Guide , which includes personal resources to help them navigate through college.
One of these seniors, Carlos Garcia-Perez, was also recognized as the recipient of the Butler Laptop Award and was awarded a free laptop. Carlos will attend Harvard University in the fall and was featured in the local news for his academic and personal success. To read more about Carlos' incredible story, please click here.
The Senior Workshop was sponsored by the University of Tampa's Office of Graduate Studies. They generously donated their space, provided food and made this event possible. 
Thank you University of Tampa and congratulations to the Class of 2018!

TSIC graduating seniors at the Senior Workshop.

June Mentor of the Month
Irene Rodriguez
1. How did you become involved with mentoring through the Hillsborough Education Foundation? 
I read about the program on a volunteer organizations website. A friend of mine had also discussed the program with me before as well.

2. What has been the most rewarding part of mentoring?
I love interacting with teens! I worked with at-risk teens for many years prior to retirement and found it to be very rewarding. 

3. What do you believe is the key to being a quality mentor?
Being authentic, honest, and consistent are very effective tools as a mentor. When you exhibit these qualities to your mentee, it also sets an example for them to follow as well.

4. When you are not working with students, how do you prefer to spend your free time?
I enjoy volunteering at a local free clinic for a few hours a week, along with visiting with family and friends. I also like to stay physically active by taking walks, riding my bike, and working on my house.

5. What do you hope your mentee will learn from you?
I hope they understand how important education can be towards having a successful life, especially for their family later on. I hope they learn to build and maintain healthy relationships, as their relationships will prove to be as fruitful as their education. I also hope that they realize how valuable emotional intelligence can be, as emotional stability will guide them to make quality decisions on a daily basis.

Alumni Interview: Mayank Kesarwani
 TSIC alumnus (left) with TSIC Program Manager William Dailey.

1. What was the most memorable part of your undergraduate education?
The medical mission trips I took to Honduras and Nicaragua stand out to me the most in terms of my undergraduate education. In the nine days that we were there, we set up a clinic, gave out medication, and built bathrooms in places where modern medicine is not easily accessible to civilians. It was a very enriching and educational experience. 

2. What is something you wish you knew as a freshman in college?
I wish I knew that I could have been involved in a lot more activities than I was. College is talked up so much but once you get there, it really is not as hard or time-consuming as you may have thought it was. If I had known how much time I would have had as a freshman, I would have just done a lot more.

3. How do you like to unwind when you are finished with classes?
I usually go out with friends to get food or just hang out. I would always look forward to getting home and watching my favorite show, Game of Thrones (my favorite character is Tyrion Lannister). 

4. How has your philanthropic work influenced your career choice?
My philanthropic work cemented my interest in psychiatry. I volunteered for the suicide prevention hotline and for Grace Point, which provided adults and children with mental health services. My volunteer experience, along with the mission trips to Nicaragua and Honduras, made me realize how important mental health is, and how wide-spread mental illness is in other countries as well.

5. How did you decide that medical school was the right choice for you?
Once I knew that I wanted to focus on mental health and psychiatry, I also knew that one of the best ways to make an impact was to attend medical school. Medicine and medical advancements are so important, and there is still a lot of work to be done in terms of mental health.

6. If you could spend the day with anyone, past present or future, who would it be and why?
I would definitely want to spend the day with Elon Musk. He has taken on so many different endeavors, from establishing Pay Pal, to creating Tesla and SpaceX. His will to take on so many different things inspires me.

Thank you Mayank!

Skills For Life Report

June: What are soft skills?

According to skillsyouneed.com, soft skills are "skills which characterize relationships with other people, or which are about how you approach life and work." In contrast to technical skills, soft skills are not usually taught in a class room. Instead they are usually learned by life experience and guidance. 

According to a study conducted with Fortune 500 CEOs by the Stanford Research Institute International and the Carnegie Melon Foundation, 75 percent of long-term job success depends on soft skills. On the other hand, only 25 percent of success depends on technical knowledge. Soft skills are necessary to achieving success in one's life and career, but they are often taken for granted. A study conducted in 2012 by Millennial Branding and Experience found that 98 percent of employers look for candidates with communication skills. 91 percent of these employers claimed that communication skills are hard to find. Technical skills can help get one's foot in the door, but soft skills open up opportunities.

The  Skills for Life   Toolkit is dedicated to the development and improvement of soft skills. The Toolkit includes information and activities on valuable soft skills, such as communication, positive attitude, adaptability, teamwork, and critical thinking.

If you have not taken advantage of the Skills for Life toolkit, we recommend contacting  William Dailey ( wdailey@educationfoundation.com) to receive a hard copy .  Otherwise, please refer to our digital download option list below. If you decide to use it or are currently doing so, please provide us your feedback so we may continue to refine and improve this resource for our mentors and mentees.
Mentor Resource Alert

The Importance of the Mind:
From a young age, we are led to believe that some people are inherently better at things than others. Some people are born as natural athletes while others are born as natural leaders. However this kind of thinking can be dangerous for young students, as they may believe that if they do not excel in a particular field right away, they are doomed to fail at it. Everyone has some subject matter that they do not feel comfortable in, whether it is math, art, or sports, but through dedicated practice, anything is possible.
Did you know that Albert Einstein's parents were told that their son would not speak for the rest of his life and that he would be lucky to even have a medial job? Imagine what kind of world we would live in today if Albert and his parents truly believed that his potential was limited. That is why it is important to foster improvement throughout one's life, especially through adolescence. As mentors, you can help your student realize that their inherent intelligence is not so inherent: that they can grow and learn more than they were ever led to believe before.    

So when your student is discouraged about a particular subject in school, listen to their concerns and encourage them to keep trying. Remind them that not everything in life is going to be easy, and there are going to be some projects or tasks that seem daunting and terrifying. Let them know that it's okay to have fears, but not to let those fears ruin their drive and ambition. Sometimes the best reward is the effort.  

Studies have shown that children who believe that they can be more intelligent and that their knowledge is not fixed often do better and school and have more success throughout their life. If your student already thinks this way, that is amazing. But if your student thinks that they cannot possibly be any better at something than they already are, ask them why. You may hear something like: "So-and-so is so much better at this than I am," or "I'm just not good at it." When your student says these things, remind them that everyone has different inherent capabilities, but through concentrated effort, they can become great at anything.  

 Many students are terrified of failure because they believe that they will be punished for not doing an adequate job. However, as long as they are trying, failure is part of the learning process. When a person fails at something, it is easier for them to learn from their mistakes and make better choices in the future. But fear of failure often discourages many students from trying new things. Remind your student that as long as they try and learn from their mistakes, failure is not as bad as they are led to believe it is. It is what the student does with the failure that is really important. If the student decides to not learn anything from failure, that is the real mistake. 

As the summer takes a hold of all of us, let your student know that one of their biggest obstacles is their own mind. Help your student realize that their potential is limitless, and that how they think of their own capabilities is one of the determining factors of their success.  

Mark Your Calendar!

June 22
Metropolitan Ministries Volunteer Opportunity
Students and Mentors
July 14
Tampa Museum of Art Event
Students and Mentors
July 21
Take Stock In Children Shopping Day
Open to all Take Stock In Children Students
July 25
Financial Literacy Workshop
High School Students only
July 28
Leadership Workshop 
Middle School Students only

For more information, contact Anna Laird via  email.
The College Success Team
                                  William Dailey                            Anna Laird
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     Wildens Cajuste                     Mari Velaz                            Jayson Blunt
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If you know someone who is interested in mentoring, 
have them visit our website for more information: