Category Archives: GESA

Events and News relating to the ITEP Global Environmental Sciences Academy at Banning High School in Wilmington. For more information on this Academy, contact Program Manager Harlene Stanley at harlene@itepinc.org

GPS Your Future 2013: More Than Just Numbers

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320 student attendees
27 exhibitors
25 ITEP staff, alumni, and board members
18 speakers
1 non-profit
1 university
1 community college

Who knew that an idea at an ITEP Board of Director’s retreat would’ve grown to this, even after just 4 years of inception? Our 4th Annual GPS Your Future event on October 11, 2013 had more to show off than BIG numbers. We had new additions, a revamped speaker series and stronger emphasis on new education initiatives; and it all happened within hours!

Like in previous years, trade, transportation and logistics were well-represented and well complemented by our new participants in the global business sphere – Avatronex, Prudential, StubHub Center, and Tesoro, just to name a few.

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The growth in exhibitors and participants made for an electrifying exhibit hall and recharged speaker sessions. Global industry professionals spoke about their “road to success” while sharing stories of personal and professional failure and success.

Higher education and technology also played a stronger role during the event. LA Harbor College represented their top programs (Architecture, Culinary Arts and Nursing) and were joined by CSU Dominguez Hills and the Fashion Institute of Merchandising and Design (FIDM). LA Harbor College counselors also led an interactive activity with the use of tablets, and a CSUDH Community College Outreach Officer presented a “how to transfer/get to college” session. Kudos to Sara, Dan and Pilar, our fantastic counselors/speakers! From career exploration to the discovery of an higher education pathway, ITEP students traveled through a road of their own in a matter of hours, and the results again spoke louder than any number.

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“Me, personally, all I wanted to do was go to the Marine Corps – that’s it – since I was about 6. Being here today, I figured out a few things I might want to do, like a marine biologist… or go into law enforcement – FBI, CIA, even a police academy. And it taught me something… if shoot for the moon and I miss, I’ll still land in the stars…” said Fernando, GBAC student at Carson High School.

Our teachers in attendance were also inspired.

“The questions you came up with and the interaction that you had with the adults who were presenting to you today – it was good. I was impressed,” said Holly Bowser, Lead Teacher for Barstow High School’s Mojave XP Academy, as she addressed her students.

“I learned a lot from this experience because of all of you.” And so did we.

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GPS Your Future continues to evolve thanks to our sponsors, supporters and team, and while the numbers will continue to grow (we’ll always strive for this), “bigger and better” will never be great without the time and talent from our business partners. Our students will continue to ask for more exhibitors, speakers and perhaps even cooler swag, but in the end, it’s the revamped or bigger dreams that make our event have plenty of heart. No big numbers can top that.

Want to get involved in GPS Your Future 2014 or other ITEP event? Let us know!

For event photos, check out our Facebook Page.

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Filed under Banning High School, Barstow High School, Cabrillo High School, Carson High School, Exploring Careers in Long Beach, Gardena High School, GBAC, GESA, GGLA, GSS, ITA, MATCH, Mojave XP, San Pedro High School, SPEA

Job Shadow Day 2013: Students Take Local Steps Toward Global Dreams

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SPEA students climb their way up to explore the West Basin Container Terminal and Port of LA.

Spring break 2013 will be another one for the records for ITEP students. “Time off” for our high schoolers meant more than just beach time, movie dates or sleeping in. A total of 60 students from three ITEP-supported academies at Carson, San Pedro and Phineas Banning High Schools, set a new attendance record in the most unlikely of spring break destinations – the business world in their backyards.

ITEP’s Second Annual Job Shadow Day took place on March 25, 2013. Students spent five hours shadowing and learning from technicians, researchers, engineers, and management in the trade, transportation and logistics industries. ITEP Advisory Board Members welcomed students at 16 different facilities. Among them were Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, CalScience Environmental Laboratories, City of Carson, JMC2 Engineering, Ports America, US Coast Guard, Valero Wilmington Refinery, Watson Land Company, West Basin Container Terminal (WBCT), and Yusen Logistics.

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GBAC student learns about Watson Land Company operations and industrial development.

Students climbed cranes at Ports America terminals, observed the US Coast Guard’s canines in action and participated in local government meetings, just to name a few of the exciting hands-on opportunities.

“This Job Shadow Program was very beneficial to me because it gave me an insight to the various positions within NOAA that I didn’t know about,” stated Talore, SPEA senior who visited NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). “It definitely opened my eyes to the different career opportunities and possibilities that are available.”

“My favorite part of the site visit was seeing a trained dog in action finding explosives,” said Osvaldo, SPEA junior who spent his day with the US Coast Guard. “I learned a lot of the different ranks in the USCG, and I’ve gotten a clear view of what I would be interested in doing when I join.”

Students prepared for the annual event by completing four workshops on resume writing, job application and cover letter basics, and interviewing skills. The final round involved interviews conducted by ITEP industry Advisory Board Members. The preparation paid off well in the end.

“The students were all professionally dressed and attentive,” stated Mary Gutierrez, GESA Advisory Board Member from Valero Wilmington Refinery. “We enjoyed hosting them and look forward to doing it again next year… I’m impressed with the way ITEP instills in their students the confidence to be comfortable around authority figures.”

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GESA students became scientists at CalScience Environmental Laboratories.

After exploring the Port of Los Angeles with West Basin Container Terminal, San Pedro student, Uriel reported, “I now know the basics of how they keep the port running, and how it comes together like a puzzle.”

How many high school students have the opportunity to don hard hats and walk among cranes and containers to view the inner workings of our global trade infrastructure? How many students get to see the relevance of their science and math classes as they examine petri dishes and work alongside lab scientists? How many of our 16-year-olds get the chance to sit in the corner office and consult with top-level executives? Not enough!

However, thanks to the support of our industry and school partners, and the hardworking ITEP team, 60 students were able to obtain an in-depth look into some of the most exciting and lucrative jobs in their communities and beyond. The exploration begins at the local level – in a city’s backyard – and leads to a global path and career. Join us in making more discoveries happen!

Contact us today to host a future Job Shadow Day , or ask how you can help create additional college and career dreams.

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Ports America welcomed our GESA students with open arms – thank you!

To view more photos from ITEP’s Second Annual Job Shadow Day, head over to our Facebook Page.

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Filed under Banning High School, Carson High School, GBAC, GESA, San Pedro High School, SPEA

Your Investments and a New Future

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Arturo Alcazar, 2013 Carol Rowen 180 Degree Award Winner from Barstow High School, Mojave XP Academy.

It’s three o’clock on a March 20th afternoon and the venue for our 13th Annual Scholarship is half full. The female students retouch their hair and make-up during quick restroom breaks. They hurry back to the dinner floor to place the finishing touches on their academy booths. Table centerpieces created by dinner’s host academy, ITA are positioned neatly between the condiments and table settings placed by MATCH students. Meanwhile, the boys in pressed dress shirts and coordinated ties assist with the “heavy lifting.” To the right of the stage, a GBAC student steams out the last wrinkles found on the Oh Snap! photo booth drapes. By four o’clock, new navy blue polo’s spring up in the middle of the floor. Our new ITEP students, Exploring Careers in Long Beach (from Cabrillo High School) arrive. All students were dressed for the dinner of their high school lives – the “interview” with that future boss and mentor is less than two hours away.

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From left to right: Oscar Reyes (MATCH Academy), ITEP Scholarship Recipient. Carson High GBA students meet Marilyn Roth, ITEP Board Member. Diana Medel (GESA Academy), Martin D. Chavez Scholarship Recipient.

Over 620 of our friends, students and supporters joined us at our 13th Annual Scholarship Dinner, “Investing in Our Youth” at the World Cruise Center in San Pedro. The biggest celebration in ITEP history lasted 3 1/2 hours and yet, so much took place.

Over 260 ITEP students came to face with future mirror images of themselves – the transportation executive, public official, business owner and philanthropist. On the other side of the guest list, over 350 trade, transportation and logistics professionals shook hands and conversed with their investment, our ITEP students. Guests senses were amplified with firm hand shakes, the knotting of a scholarship recipient’s tie by a sponsor, the nervous student voice at the beginning of a practice speech and a family-style meal prepared and served by MATCH Academy students.

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Clockwise: Soren Nielsen (Dachser Transport) talks with an ECLB student from Cabrillo High School. MATCH student begins to serve dinner guests. ITEP students pose with Amy Grat, ITEP CEO, Cynthia Ruiz, Deputy Executive Director of External Relations for the Port of Los Angeles and Mario Bermudez, President of Figueroa Capital Group.

Behind each adult presenter and speaker stood a rising student and star. One of our dinner VIPs, Los Angeles City Councilman, Joe Buscaino introduced our first student speaker, Maria Navarro. Maria shyly approached the stage. Her petite frame let out a firm tone and in between bright smiles, she won the cheers of her academy (GESA) and the crowd – she had nailed it and the celebration had begun. Our 8 ITEP scholarship recipients followed. Their faces were happy and anxious in the limelight. Then came our LA Air Cargo Association Scholar, Silvia Cardona of ITA, FTA/LAFFCBA Scholar, Ruby Silva of GBAC and HAIC Scholar, Ruth Lopez of GSS.

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Clockwise: Maria Navaro (GESA), “Invest in Youth” student speaker poses with John Howland, ITEP Board Member and Dinner Chair from Cerrell Associates. Diana Jauregui (ITA), “Think Globally Earn Locally” student speaker. LA City Councilman Joe Buscaino addresses dinner guests.

Suddenly, with hands filled with certificates it all became real. ITEP students took their seats feeling different – they were scholarship recipients, winners, and future college students. Soon after, the spirit of a “Toro” filled the room. The Chavez family took the stage and accepted the 2013 Bill Stein Memorial Leadership Award on behalf of the late CSUDH alum and Port of Los Angeles employee, Martin D. Chavez. Behind them stood a memorable photo of Martin. His spirit was present as we presented three new Martin D. Chavez scholarships.

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Family members of Martin D. Chavez take the stage to accept his Bill Stein Memorial Leadership Award.

Then came the night’s “it” moment: the standing ovation received by Arturo Alcazar, our Carol Rowen 180 Degree Award from Barstow High School. With inspiration at a new high, Tom Good from Matson took the stage to introduce the last student speaker and scholarship recipients: Diana Jauregui from ITA (our last student speaker), Nguyen Pham from GGLA, Paola Aguirre from ITA and Viviana Vela from GESA. All 4 students received Matson Scholarships, the first four of a three-year commitment from this extraordinary shipping line.

Arturo returned to the stage to introduce our “Educator of the Year” and his principal, Derrick Delton. Happy tears were seen across the room as Derrick delivered his speech. Barstow High School came out a winner!

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Barstow High School Principal, Derrick Delton speaks to dinner guests after accepting the ITEP 2013 “Educator of the Year” award.

To close the night, Tesoro, our 2013 “Keeper of the Flame” awardee sent Dan Carlson, Vice President of Marketing and Refining, to the stage to become the night’s advocate for ITEP and our youth. Thank you, Tesoro!

“We are proud to not only be sponsors but also partners of the ITEP programs. Being partners of an educational program that emphasizes the importance of skills and educational demands in our industry sector gives students the preparation and exposure to endless possibilities in careers that are not only viable, good paying but also transferable to many sectors. For this reason we are not only excited to be partners but also appreciative for the recognition,” stated Brissa Sotelo, External Affairs Manager of Tesoro.

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To our supporters and sponsors, we thank you for investing in our students and ITEP. Your generosity made an ordinary school night special. Masters and protégés met, college and career dreams emerged while others were solidified. The journey for many is just beginning.

To view more 2013 Scholarship Dinner Photos, please visit the ITEP Facebook Page here.

To our 2013 ITEP Scholarship Dinner Sponsors
A heartfelt thanks to all for your immense generosity!

To our 2013 Scholarship Recipientscongratulations to all of you. You have made ITEP and your community proud!

 

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Filed under Banning High School, Barstow High School, Cabrillo High School, Carson High School, Exploring Careers in Long Beach, Gardena High School, GBAC, GESA, GGLA, GSS, ITA, MATCH, Mojave XP, San Pedro High School, SPEA, SWAG

ITEP Students Give Back with Heart

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GESA students get ready to walk the parade route.

What does community service mean to high school students? One normally expects to hear the descriptions of ‘obligation’ or ‘responsibility.’ However, what if the answer came with a pleasant surprise? What if service to the community also celebrated the rich diversity of a Harbor neighborhood and prompted the desire to do more? The standard theme of giving back during the holidays took on a different and powerful meaning in Wilmington, California.

ITA students, Flor and Mayra pose for a quick photo.

ITA students, Flor and Mayra pose for a quick photo.

It happened on Sunday, December 9. Ninety-six students from Banning High School volunteered at the 25th Annual Heart of the Harbor Holiday Parade in Wilmington, and proudly represented all four ITEP-supported academies: GESA, GSS, ITA and MATCH. Wilmington streets filled with floats, marching horses, performers and school/community bands. The festive ensemble traveled through Avalon Boulevard, from ‘E’ to ‘M’ Street and included several ITEP students who walked in the parade with their academy banners and those from various sponsors. Meanwhile, GSS monitored the parade crowd and several GESA students provided snacks to volunteers.

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GESA students from Banning High School show their academy pride.

For Julia, 11th grader and GSS student, participating in the Wilmington Parade gave her the opportunity to share her pride for her program. “It means a lot to me because it’s the first year I’m in GSS, and it’s great to help the community. I like the program. I would tell my peers and younger people to volunteer because you will have those memories that you did something good for the community and made it better.”

11th grader and ITA student, Flor defined community service as a way to give back on the front end while learning professional skills for the future. “Community service means giving back and being in front of the community. It’s a good thing – you learn how to approach different people and how to act professionally.”

Of course, there was also the mention of community pride. “Being proud of your community is also a part of community service. Don’t just think of community service as a physical activity.”

A GSS student walks along the Banning High School drill team.

A GSS student walks along the Banning High School drill team.

“It’s better to give than to receive. We all cooperate to let people know that we can make a change. We need to fix the world – organize and clean the planet so we can start doing bigger things,” stated Luis, 12th grader and GESA student who definitely placed an environmental focus on his answer of what community service means to him.

Luis also opened up about the opportunities GESA and volunteering has provided. “You see the world in a different perspective. You also learn to talk to people. I was very timid at first, but then I ran for VP of the GESA academy and won. This year, I was elected as president.

Later in the parade, we caught up with Luis who was riding a skateboard with another GESA student. They laughed and joked as they approached the start line of the parade with their GESA banner – just another set of ordinary teenagers, full of heart and very capable of accomplishing great things. Community service didn’t end here. These students have more to explore and offer. It’s up to us to not just follow their lead, but keep them strong and motivated.

ITEP students ready to march with a Port of LA banner.

ITEP students ready to march with a Port of LA banner.

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Filed under Banning High School, GESA, GSS, ITA, MATCH

API scores are up!

ITEP congratulates all five high schools  we work with on increasing their API Scores! The Academic Performance Index is an achievement gauge for California public schools based on standardized test results. Carson High School alone improved their score by 37 points for an official API score of 689, the highest score among LAUSD South Bay High Schools! Way to go, Colts! This great achievement is a product of the successful community partnerships among the schools, ITEP, and its industry volunteers.  Together, we are helping our young people think globally and earn locally. Our students rock!

Carson High School API Score for 2012 – 689 (Improvement of 37 over last year’s score 652)

Banning High School API Score for 2012 – 682 (Improvement of 23 over last year’s score 659)

Barstow High School API Score for 2012 – 696 (Improvement of 22 over last year’s score 674)

San Pedro High School API Score for 2012 – 716 (Improvement of 5 over last year’s score 711)

Gardena High School  API Score for 2012 – 633 (Improvement of 15 over last year’s score 61)

“I would like to express my gratitude to ITEP for their support throughout the years at Banning High School and Gardena High School. The support that you give students in the Small Learning Communities through  Community Advisory Boards, career presentations, summer internships, team building activities, and student recognition are the reasons our students stay on task to graduate. The partnership established with ITEP has allowed the resources to create an environment that is personable and nurturing. It is an experience that all students involved in an ITEP Academy will remember for a lifetime. The students that have benefited from the ITEP Academies are making positive contributions in the PORT because of your organization. We salute you, and thank you as we move into yet another exciting year of partnership.” -Rudy  J. Mendoza Principal, Phineas Banning High School

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Filed under Banning High School, Barstow High School, Carson High School, Gardena High School, GBAC, GESA, GGLA, GSS, ITA, MATCH, Mojave XP, San Pedro High School, SPEA

Richard Jenkins honored with ITEP Spirit Award at HAIC Banquet

ITEP proudly presented Dick Jenkins, of Jenkins Environmental Associates, with the ITEP Spirit Award at the HAIC Banquet on July 19, 2012. Amy Grat, CEO of ITEP, Gary Gregory, GESA Chair, and  GESA Advisory Board Co-Chair, Bob Stearns were on hand to honor Dick with this award for his tireless commitment  and support for the Global Environmental Science Academy (GESA).

Mr. Jenkins has been a very active member of Banning High School‘s GESA Advisory Board for more than five years. In addition to participating in monthly planning meetings, he has been a coach in the monthly Industry Coaches Mentoring Program for GESA juniors for the last three years.

Working with the Harbor Association of Industry and Commerce (HAIC), Dick has been instrumental in continuing to help GESA secure funding for their annual Catalina Environmental Leadership Program (CELP) Signature Trip, and for the last two years, he worked with Clay Sandidge to start the Sea Search Program at Cabrillo Marine Aquarium for GESA Marine Biology students.

GESA students are also able to benefit from the Hazardous Waste Materials First Responder Training that Dick helped to set up, and are able to receive Environmental Training and Compliance Certification  (ETAC). It is more than evident that Dick has a heart for the academy students and staff, and he will be missed as he retires from the board.

All the best to you, Dick, and thanks for the memories and for all you have done!

By Harlene Stanley, Program Manager: GBAC, GESA, Mojave XP, SPEA

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Filed under Banning High School, GESA

Mary Gutierrez is recognized with GESA Spirit Award

By Harlene Stanley, ITEP Program Manager: GBAC, GESA, Mojave XP, SPEA

At the April Global Environmental Science Academy (GESA) Advisory Board Meeting, Bonnie Bair and Harlene Stanley of ITEP,  honored Mary Gutierrez from Valero Wilmington Refinery, with the 2011-2012 ITEP Spirit Award for GESA at Banning High School.

Mary is an active member of the monthly GESA Advisory Board, and has participated or sponsored the on-campus Industry Coaching Program, Environmental Science Guest Speaker Series, multiple Community Service Projects, the Los Angeles Youth at Work Employment Preparation Workshops, and recently hosted nine GESA students for the first Job Shadowing Day at Valero.

Mary’s heart for community service is also reflected by her active participation in Wilmington LIONS Club, as President; the 2012 Wilmington ACS – Relay for Life; LA Holiday Afloat Boat Parade; the Wilmington Heart of the Harbor Holiday Parade; and the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce as Secretary to the Executive Board.

Through her willingness to partner and support the ITEP staff and program, and GESA’s Lead Teacher, Margarita Aguilar, Mary has helped to provide motivational activities for the students, and encouragement for the staff. Mary’s outstanding contributions and commitments continue to make a difference in the lives of everyone around her.

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Filed under Banning High School, GESA