By Tamas Mondovics

SouthShore Chamber of Commerce reached out to their members last month, in hopes of rounding up some help on behalf of local students.

According to SouthShore Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Melanie D. Morrison, the Chamber’s Educational Partnership Committee is seeking professionals who could donate some of their time to inspire middle school students.

“Beth Shields Middle School in Ruskin is looking to the local business community to donate an hour, or a day, to come and speak to their students,” Morrison said. “Teachers would like to show the students the variety of professions available, the path to get there, and the importance of secondary education, either college or vocational school.

Beth Shields School officials emphasized that the students would greatly benefit by hearing members of the business community, which may include business owners, insurance adjusters, sales clerks, journalists, government employees, realtors or electricians just to name a few.

Besides paying a visit to the school, SouthShore businesses have a number of other ways to give back to the community as a way of supporting the students, which includes the Beth Shields’ AVID program currently in the process of seeking companies to sponsor the “College Bound and Proud” t-shirt drive.

The school is looking to get funds to purchase t-shirts for approximately 220 7th and 8th grade AVID students, who would wear them on career and college field trips.” Morrison said.

AVID is a program that serves students who have the potential and desire to go to college with the purpose to motivate each student and create a family environment of students who will help one another gain entrance to college.

“In exchange for your support as a sponsor, your company name and logo will be printed on the back of the t-shirt beneath the statement, “We support AVID College Dreamers”.

Beth Shields Middle school is located at 15732 Beth Shields Way in Ruskin and hope to see 15 sponsors at $100 each to join the effort.

Call 672-5338 or email


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