Andson attended two notable events this week. UNLV Community Partnership Orientation and Las Vegas Metro Chamber of Commerce luncheon - featuring Elaine Wynn. Both stressed the importance of highly educated citizens and the positive impact that it will have on the "health" of our society. We couldn't agree more – sustainable and inclusive economic growth requires heavy investment in human capital.
We are happy to see that UNLV is taking the initiative to bring the community together and provide different venues of collaboration amongst local agencies. Navigating the nonprofit world and getting things done can be a daunting task if the act of "working together" doesn't get recognized and treasured. That's why it took us by surprise (very nice surprise!) when John Wagner, Director of Community Relations at UNLV, spoke about our Homework Help & Tutoring Program and highlighted our efforts to recruit more education majors who will work with us as tutor aides while getting paid through the Work-Study Federal Program. It is a proven model that we already have in place with Nevada State College and hope to see come to fruition with UNLV and CSN.
Although Elaine Wynn may not be aware of the amount of resources that the Andson Organization is putting into closing the achievement gap, she did allude to our cause when she said that "there is a sense of urgency to break the cycle of poverty, and we know it can only be done through education." But it feels that our sense of urgency should shift to emergency when the Education Week's Chance-for-Success Index is telling us that "a child born in Nevada had the worst chance in the nation for growing up to be a success." What do we need to do? Elaine Wynn suggested a successful formula to turn our state around: community engagement, strong leadership, talented educators and adequate school funding. We agree with her that we are running out of time and that we all need to get involved by supporting literacy initiatives and advocating for education.
"Community" is one of Andson's core values – we foster open communication, ongoing collaboration and continued partnerships with businesses, government agencies and nonprofit organizations. The kind of challenge that is in front of us cannot be accomplished without the driving force of those who get genuinely and actively involved.
Where do you rank in community involvement?