By Tamas Mondovics

The Blind Side Star Quinton Aaron Joins Hillsborough County Anti-Bullying Town Hall Meeting

In an effort to shed continuous light on bullying at schools as well as to promote anti-bullying, Hillsborough County public schools officials welcomed hundreds of parents, teachers, students and local government officials as they hosted a town hall meeting at Blake High School earlier this month. Organizers acknowledged that, while bullying is a reality for many students and can impact their physical and emotional well-being and their ability to learn, it is often undetected or overlooked by teachers, parents, and even friends.

The free event has welcomed actor Quinton Aaron, anti-bullying advocate and star of the Academy Award winning film The Blind Side, who lead the discussion on how to identify bullying and put a stop to this behavior.

Aaron was joined by Hillsborough County Commissioner Sandra L. Murman, Hillsborough County Schools Superintendent Jeff Eakins, former Tampa Police Chief Jane Castor, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office School Resource Deputy Robin Hymes, Tomlin Middle School Assistant Principal Abeba Salter-Woods, Children’s Board Executive Director Kelley Parris, and Eisenhower Middle School SAVE Club president Elijah Seay.

Partnering with The Quinton Aaron Foundation, Murman has spearheaded the efforts to promote local anti-bullying throughout Hillsborough County Public Schools.

“Whether you are being bullied, or you know someone that may be a victim of bullying, it is important to let students, teachers, and families know that there are readily available resources to identify and stop bullying within our schools and communities,” Murman said. “Together we can put an end to bullying in Hillsborough County.”

Eakins agreed and was pleased to have been able to assemble a team of law enforcement officials, teachers, metal health professionals and special guests to provide helpful information to all present.  

For more information, visit www.sdhc.k12.fl.us.

Hillsborough County Students Participate in Engineering Technology Experience Tours

During a series of tours, nearly 100 students from the School District of Hillsborough County got a chance to visit the engineering technology lab at Hillsborough Community College (HCC) in Brandon. According to HCC officials, the Engineering Technology Experience (ETE) tours are conducted on a yearly basis by the Florida Advanced Technological Education (FLATE), the Florida-based National Science Foundation Center of Excellence at HCC-Brandon, to give students a 360 degree perspective of educational and career pathways in manufacturing.

“All tours showcased applications/integration of science,technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM-based concepts, in everyday high-tech manufacturing operations,” said FLATE Spokesperson Janice Mukhia. “During the ETE tours, students engage in activities that will give them a hands-on understanding about STEM and high-tech manufacturing operations.”

As part of the process, Mukhia added that students get a chance to see equipment demonstrations of the robotic arm, 3-D printing operations, NAO humanoid robots, and engage in discussions about manufacturing careers, educational pathways and opportunities that are available in Florida. For more information, visit www.fl-ate.org.