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Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Awarded $8,000 Grant from Dabo’s All In Team® Foundation

Press Release

For Immediate Release
December 6, 2016

– Grant to support development of American Dream Literacy Tool Kit –

Sunset, SC — December 6, 2016 – Inspiring the American Dream Foundation announced today that it has been awarded an $8,000 grant from Dabo’s All In Team Foundation. The grant will help Inspiring the American Dream Foundation to research, develop and test an American Dream Literacy Tool Kit.

Led by Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Education Committee Chair, Kathy Brazinski, efforts are currently underway to introduce an expanded literacy and character development curriculum and training program to engage 3rd, 4th and 5th graders throughout the State of South Carolina.

photo-201611-02-dabo-swinney-bob-basmadjian“Dabo and Kathleen Swinney truly embody the American Dream by their giving to and caring for people in their community,” said Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Board Member, Kathy Brazinski. “Through their generosity, we now have the resources to begin building-out our Opportunity to Succeed Program, enabling us to reach more children and inspire more dreams.”

To provide guidance and strategic direction, Inspiring the American Dream Foundation will be organizing an Education and Workforce Development Focus Group. The group will consist of local, regional and state educators, parents, business and community leaders.

Initial plans for the project include:

  • Expanding the current reading curriculum to support a wider range of academic (writing, inter-personal communications, technology) and life and career (‘soft’) skills
  • Incorporating ‘active’ and ‘project-based learning’ activities into the curriculum and supporting materials
  • Adding a more formal training component
  • Testing and piloting the curriculum and companion tools at select South Carolina elementary schools and after-school education providers
  • Continuing work with Edmond Bowers, Clemson University, Youth Development Leadership Department, to improve assessment methodology and process

“We are truly grateful to Coach Swinney, Kathleen and their All-In Team Foundation for their continued support of Inspiring the American Dream Foundation,” said Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Co-Founder and Chairman, Robert Basmadjian. “It is an honor and privilege to help carry on their mission of caring to the people of our community.”

About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society. For additional information, visit www.inspire-the-dream.org.

About Dabo’s All In Team Foundation

Dabo’s All In Team Foundation was founded to raise awareness of critical education and health issues in order to change lives of people across the state of SC, concentrating in Breast Cancer Research, The Phoenix Center, The Rise Program, The Call Me Mister Program, and Grants. For more information visit, http://www.dabosallinteam.com/

# # #

MEDIA CONTACT

Robert Basmadjian
Co-Founder and Chairman
Inspiring the American Dream Foundation
Phone: (864) 868-0202
E-Mail: bob@inspire-the-dream.org
Website: www.inspire-the-dream.org

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Announces Release of New Report

Press Release

For Immediate Release

August 15, 2016

– Report Details Results of Literacy Program While Highlighting Integration of Soft Skills Development and Assessment into Reading Camp Curriculum- 

Sunset, SC — August 15, 2016 – Inspiring the American Dream Foundation today announced the release of a new report detailing final results of its pilot Opportunity to Succeed Program at A.R. Lewis Elementary School in Pickens, South Carolina. The report provides an overview and analysis of Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s literacy program, with a special focus on how the Foundation integrated soft skills development and assessment into its Reading Camp curriculum.

Funded through a grant provided by Dabo’s All In Team Foundation, Inspiring the American Dream Foundation launched its Opportunity to Succeed Program in the Spring of 2015 as an After-School Reading Camp for 3rd grade students. Building upon the success of its pilot, Inspiring the American Dream Foundation administered a second camp at A.R. Lewis Elementary School in the Spring of 2016.

ITADF ReportThe new report is titled “A Holistic Approach to Elementary Education: Integrating Character Development into Literacy-Based Activities.” It describes how important life skills and character traits (‘soft’ skills) were incorporated into the Foundation’s Reading Camp curriculum and instructional materials. Readers will learn how American contemporary and historical characters were woven into the program’s curriculum and how campers were encouraged to make connections between the characters’ skills and traits and their own personal behaviors. Most importantly, readers will learn how campers applied what they learned to their own personal lives, enabling them to realize the vision that the American Dream is achievable.

Released in conjunction with the new school year, the eight page report also provides both quantitative (MAP-reading scores, soft skills) and qualitative (student-, parent- and teacher-reported engagement and satisfaction) data to measure the camps’ impact. Readers will learn about the Foundation’s collaboration with Dr. Edmond P. Bowers, Assistant Professor, Youth Development Leadership, at Clemson University’s College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences. Dr. Bowers was recruited to help develop a more formal process and valid multidimensional metric for assessing the soft skills featured in the Foundation’s programs. Focusing on the relevant domains from the Profile of the South Carolina Graduate, the study was designed to elicit feedback around learned skills and traits including perseverance, confidence, work ethic, teamwork, and kindness.

“The Opportunity to Succeed Program provides a rare experience for children in which supports for character development are thoughtfully and intentionally integrated into literacy-based activities,” said Dr. Edmond P. Bowers. “Therefore, for children with academic, social, and emotional difficulties, the Opportunity to Succeed Program provides a potential framework for promoting growth in these domains through one holistic curriculum. Whereas ‘academic’ skills are important for success in life, oftentimes, achievement and success in youth from less-resourced backgrounds is related to these ‘soft’ skills such as perseverance, positive self-concept, work ethic, teamwork, and kindness.”

For more information on Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s Opportunity to Succeed Program, or to download a copy of the report, please visit www.inspire-the-dream.org/report

 

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 About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society. For additional information, visit www.inspire-the-dream.org

Media Contact
Inspiring the American Dream Foundation
Bob Basmadjian
Tel: +1 864 868-0202
bob@inspire-the-dream.org

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Announces $7,100 Donation from Anonymous Donor

-Funds to support development of American Dream Literacy Tool Kit-

Press Release

For Immediate Release
July 5, 2016

Sunset, SC — July 5, 2016 – Inspiring the American Dream Foundation today announced that it has received a $7,100 donation from an anonymous donor to support development and distribution of the Foundation’s American Dream Literacy Tool Kit.

Features of the new tool kit may include:

  • Digital platform
  • Curriculum, lesson plans, work-sheets and videos
  • Supports grades 3-5
  • Designed to improve student literacy, while instilling important life & career character traits (soft skills)
  • Combines play and literacy with problem solving in small group environments
  • Lesson plans incorporate project-based learning activities
  • Modular design promotes teacher creativity and innovation
  • Leverages 21st Century technology for maximum reach, customer support and economy
  • Provides on-line mechanism for collecting and analyzing data
  • Measures literacy and soft skills (e.g.; inter-personal communications, work ethic, perseverance, kindness, collaboration, self-confidence)

donor press release“Inspiring the American Dream Foundation is grateful to our anonymous donor for this most generous donation,” said Robert Basmadjian, Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Co-Founder & Chairman. “These funds will allow us to recruit innovative, local educators to help us design, develop and support the introduction of our new American Dream Literacy Tool Kit. We believe this approach will help us to scale our literacy programs; providing the greatest impact for students across South Carolina and return on investment for our anonymous donor.”

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About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society. For additional information, visit www.inspire-the-dream.org

Media Contact
Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Bob Basmadjian
Tel: +1 864 868-0202
bob@inspire-the-dream.org

 

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Announces Addition of David M. Wyman to Board of Directors

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation today announced the election of Dr. David M. Wyman to its Board of Directors.

Press Release

For Immediate Release

June 30, 2016

Sunset, SC — June 30, 2016 – Inspiring the American Dream Foundation today announced the election of Dr. David M. Wyman to its Board of Directors. The appointment supports Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s growth strategy that includes development and distribution of its American Dream Literacy Tool Kit throughout South Carolina.

wyman-picDr. Wyman is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Management and Marketing (formerly Management and Entrepreneurship) and the Director of the Center for Entrepreneurship at the College of Charleston’s School of Business.   He has also taught at Colorado State, University of San Diego, and was the Associate Director of the Spiro Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership at Clemson University.  His research interests center on entrepreneurship and real estate.  David earned his Ph.D. from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland.

Prior to joining academia, Dr. Wyman was a successful inventor and entrepreneur. As the Principal of Wyman Associates, he invented / licensed over 50 toy products including baby toys, dolls, electronics and board games. One of his most successful games was 13 Dead End Drive, which sold over 3 million copies worldwide.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome David Wyman to our Board of Directors,” said Bob Basmadjian, Co-Founder and Chairman of Inspiring the American Dream Foundation. David is committed to sparking entrepreneurial initiative and innovation and is a perfect fit as we begin to introduce our American Dream Literacy Tool Kit throughout South Carolina.”

# # #

About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society. For additional information, visit www.inspire-the-dream.org

Media Contact
Inspiring the American Dream Foundation
Bob Basmadjian
Tel: +1 864 868-0202
bob@inspire-the-dream.org

 

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Announces Winners of 2015 Opportunity to Succeed Read-A-Thon

Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 12, 2016

Sunset, SCFebruary 12, 2016 – Inspiring the American Dream Foundation today announced the winners of its 2015 Opportunity to Succeed Read-A-Thon. Designed to encourage and motivate 3rd grade students to read, the eight week competition was held between A.R. Lewis Elementary and Hagood Elementary schools located in Pickens, South Carolina.

Two happy schoolchildren have fun in classroom at schoolStudents from both schools competed against each other and were evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Number of books read
  • Number of pages read
  • Number of visits to their school library media center
  • Having a Pickens County Library card
  • Participation in a pre-scheduled tour of any Pickens County Library System location
  • Number of visits to any Pickens County Library System location

Individual winners of the competition include, Emma Adams, Addison Bradberry, Luke Bynum, Skylar Church, Clay Couch, Allison Hendricks, Cason Hickey, Michaela Mosley, Chloe Pollard, Na’ja Rivers, Michael Seabrooke, Gavin Stanley, Landon Tallman and Alexis Worthen. The individual high-performer was Landon Tallman at A.R. Lewis Elementary. Mrs. Michelle Clayton’s 3rd grade class at A.R. Lewis Elementary was named the team winner.

“We are so proud of the students at both A.R. Lewis and Hagood Elementary schools, said Robert Basmadjian, Co-Founder & Chairman at Inspiring the American Dream Foundation. “Their hard work and dedication to improving their reading and comprehension skills should be commended. It is these types of skills and character traits that will benefit students most as they continue their education and ultimately compete for future career and vocational opportunities in South Carolina’s Upstate.”

The initiative was presented by Spectrum Marketing & Communications to bring together the not-for-profit, education and business communities to help address Upstate, South Carolina’s education and workforce development needs. Blue Ridge Electric Cooperative, Clemson University, Countybank, the Pickens County Library System and ScanSource supported the initiative.

“ScanSource has always recognized the importance of supporting education in the communities in which we live and work,” said Christy Thompson, Vice President of Worldwide Marketing at ScanSource. “Helping to educate and develop the next generation of professionals is vital to the ongoing success of businesses in the Upstate. We have been honored to support Inspiring the American Dream Foundation in past educational initiatives, and we were pleased to be able to play a part in presenting the Foundation’s 2015 Opportunity to Succeed Read-A-Thon.”

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation will recognize the hard work and accomplishments of the participating Read-A-Thon students at a celebration event on February 22nd at A.R. Lewis Elementary. There, Congressman Jeff Duncan (SC 3rd Congressional District), will present Congressional Certificates of Achievement to the competition’s individual winners. In addition, two student-athletes from Clemson University will be there to share with the students their experiences and lessons learned from competing at the collegiate level. Clemson University’s Athletic Department will also acknowledge the winning 3rd grade class during a special halftime awards ceremony at the February 13th men’s basketball game against Georgia Tech, in Greenville.

About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society. For additional information, visit www.inspire-the-dream.org.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Robert Basmadjian
Co-Founder & Chairman
Inspiring the American Dream Foundation
E-Mail: bob@inspire-the-dream.org
Phone: (864) 868-0202
Website: www.inspire-the-dream.org

$8,000 Grant from Dabo’s All In Team® Foundation

Press Release

For Immediate Release
December 1, 2015

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Awarded $8,000 Grant from Dabo’s All In Team® Foundation to support organization’s after-school reading initiatives and growth strategy throughout Upstate, South Carolina

Photo (2015)(11-11) Dabo's Grant Awards Luncheon (2)Sunset, SC — December 1, 2015 – Inspiring the American Dream Foundation announced today that it has been awarded an $8,000 grant from Dabo’s All In Team Foundation. The grant will help Inspiring the American Dream Foundation to maintain momentum for its American Dream Reading Camps, while at the same time, fuel expansion for its literacy, character development and career awareness programs throughout Upstate, South Carolina.

Made possible through a grant provided by Dabo’s All In Team Foundation in 2014, Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s Opportunity to Succeed Program was piloted as an After-School Reading Camp for a group of 3rd grade students at Albert R. Lewis Elementary School (AR Lewis) in Pickens, South Carolina. Launched in February 2015, the AR Lewis Reading Camp focused on improving 3rd grade reading proficiency, while instilling in students important character traits necessary to achieve the American Dream.

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s Opportunity to Succeed Program has been developed around three guiding principles – teach, share and empower:

  • Teach students about the American Dream, while making the learning experience fun and interesting
  • Share with students the necessary skills and character traits to achieve their American Dreams
  • Empower students by helping them to visualize their personal American Dream journeys

Due to the results of the AR Lewis pilot, the School District of Pickens County subsequently incorporated components of Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s Reading Camp curriculum into their state-mandated Read to Succeed Summer Reading Camps.

Propelled by these recent successes, Inspiring the American Dream Foundation is now in the process of fortifying the organization and its programs to fuel an aggressive growth strategy throughout Upstate, South Carolina. Central to this effort is the development of an Educator Tool Kit. The tool kit will include a copyrighted curriculum, select mentor texts, a series of training videos and on-going training support.

“We are truly grateful for the generous donation made by Dabo’s All In Team Foundation,” said Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Chairman, Robert Basmadjian. “Inspiring the American Dream Foundation is committed to expanding our literacy, character development and career awareness programs for students all throughout South Carolina’s Upstate. Through the continued support of Dabo’s All In Team Foundation, we will be able to maintain momentum for our reading and literacy initiatives and help scale our program for optimum impact. ”

About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society. For additional information, visit www.inspire-the-dream.org.

About the Albert R. Lewis Elementary School

Albert R. Lewis Elementary School is located in rural Pickens, South Carolina. The school’s leadership strives to provide its students the opportunity to become proficient readers, critical thinkers, and problem solvers, enabling them to be successful beyond the classroom and participate in a global community. For more information visit, http://arl.pickens.k12.sc.us/

About Dabo’s All In Team Foundation

Dabo’s All In Team Foundation was founded to raise awareness of critical education and health issues in order to change lives of people across the state of SC, concentrating in Breast Cancer Research, The Phoenix Center, The Rise Program, The Call Me Mister Program, and Grants. For more information visit, http://www.dabosallinteam.com/

# # #

MEDIA CONTACT

Robert Basmadjian
Co-Founder and Chairman
Inspiring the American Dream Foundation
Phone: (864) 868-0202
E-Mail: bob@inspire-the-dream.org
Website: www.inspire-the-dream.org

Spectrum Marketing & Communications Presents Opportunity to Succeed Read-A-Thon

Press Release

For Immediate Release
September 11, 2015

– Clemson University and ScanSource Pledge Support for Reading Initiative –

Sunset, SCSeptember 11, 2015 – Spectrum Marketing & Communications today announced the introduction of the Opportunity to Succeed Read-A-Thon. The competition will be open to donor-selected schools located throughout Upstate, South Carolina and is designed to encourage and motivate 3rd grade students to read at or above their grade level. The initiative has been organized to bring together the not-for-profit, education and business communities to help address Education and Workforce Development needs in South Carolina.

Two happy schoolchildren have fun in classroom at schoolThe Read-A-Thon will begin in the second half of school year 2015. A $500 contribution to Inspiring the American Dream Foundation enables donors to sponsor a local, elementary school (3rd grade class) of their choice to participate in the reading competition. Working with participating school media specialists, representatives from Inspiring the American Dream Foundation will kick-off the initiative through in-school presentations. The events will include an overview of the reading challenge, student evaluation criteria and incentives. Representatives of the Greenville and Pickens County Library Systems will also share information about how to obtain a library card and will distribute bookmarks and other Library information.

Upon completion of the kick-off events, beneficiary school students will compete against each other in a reading challenge. The challenge will run for eight weeks with students evaluated on:

  • Number of books read
  • Number of pages read
  • Number of visits to their school library media center
  • Having a Greenville or Pickens County Library card
  • Participation in a pre-scheduled tour of any Greenville or Pickens County Library System location
  • Number of visits to any Greenville or Pickens County Library System location

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation will recognize students of the winning school and their sponsor at an in-school celebration event. Winning students will receive:

  • Opportunity to Succeed reading medals
  • Opportunity to Succeed certificates of accomplishment
  • Tickets to a Clemson Tigers basketball game in Greenville
  • Other tickets and/or passes to local events and recreational facilities

The winning school will receive a complimentary copy of Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s Opportunity to Succeed Program Reading Camp curriculum.

ScanSource, a leading international distributor of specialty technology products, has pledged their support for the initiative. The company will be sponsoring Woodland Elementary in Greer, South Carolina.

For additional information, contact Robert Basmadjian of Spectrum Marketing & Communications at (864) 868-0202 or via e-mail at spectrum_marketing@earthlink.net.

About Spectrum Marketing & Communications

Spectrum is a full-service marketing communications firm. Founded in 1993, Spectrum was built with the “spirit of partnership” in mind. This philosophy enables our clients to extend their capabilities beyond their core competencies, while helping them to cut costs, optimize resources and shorten their time to revenue.

Spectrum’s account team is comprised of senior-level researchers, strategists, writers, designers, and media practitioners. The company’s hands-on business model and extensive network of marketing communications professionals enable us to deliver a complete, end-to-end solution and superior client service…all at an affordable price. For additional information, visit www.spectrum-marketing.net

About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society. For additional information, visit www.inspire-the-dream.org

MEDIA CONTACT:

Robert Basmadjian
Founder & Principal
Spectrum Marketing & Communications
E-Mail: spectrum_marketing@earthlink.net
Phone: (864) 868-0202
Website: www.spectrum-marketing.net

Inspiring The American Dream Foundation Announces Three Additions To Board of Directors

Press Release

For Immediate Release
August 25, 2015

Ryan Heafy, Patsy Smith and Rick Klausing Recruited to Help Drive Expansion for Opportunity to Succeed Program

Sunset, SC — August 25, 2015 – Inspiring the American Dream Foundation today announced the election of Ryan Heafy, Patsy Wood Smith and Rick Klausing to its Board of Directors. The appointments support Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s growth strategy that includes aggressive expansion for its Opportunity to Succeed Program throughout Upstate, South Carolina.

RyanRyan Heafy is an innovator in workforce development in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). His vision is to bridge the gap among industry, academic institutions, students and communities. An engineer by trade, Ryan’s career is one of strong innovation, transformation and leadership with expertise in quality systems and supply chain management. He has been involved in several entrepreneurial ventures including iMAGINE Upstate and his own manufacturing consulting company. Ryan is CEO of iMAGINEXT Solutions LLC and Partner at Switch Image Concepts. He was recently named one of Greenville Business Magazine’s 50 Most Influential People of 2014, as well as Greenville Business Magazine 2015 Best & Brightest 35 and Under.

Patsy SmithPatsy Wood Smith started her teaching career with fifth graders at a small mountain elementary school and ended up leading those fifth graders to four national honors. They won Scholastic’s Kids Are Authors Contest for three consecutive years and were the first school to win this award more than once. Her students also won Pizza Hut’s National Contest to celebrate their Book It program’s anniversary, bringing a large cash prize to the small school as well as National recognition. Today, Patsy is the principal of Youth Leadership Academy — a charter school that focuses on leadership, health and wellness, and citizenship. Patsy leads the way by setting a culture for the school where students feel safe to explore, make mistakes and ultimately succeed. She is committed to building student confidence and self-esteem, as well as teaching social responsibility.

Rick KlausingRick Klausing, began his career as a mathematics teacher in Ft. Wayne, IN. Shortly thereafter, he became a partner with Klausing Home Builders in Ohio. Upon obtaining his MBA, Rick joined Burroughs Corporation in Detroit as a systems analyst in the finance department where he was quickly promoted to team leader. This was followed by assignments as senior financial analyst, accounting manager and controller of an application software development center in Atlanta. After Burroughs and Sperry combined to form Unisys, Rick served as a marketing division financial manager, and then a services group controller. Later, he was promoted to Senior Project Controller, managing all financial aspects of a suite of major US and international contracts with private and government organizations. Along the way, Rick became involved with several not-for-profit organizations including Junior Achievement, the Unisys Charitable Giving Committee and the Atlanta Food Bank.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome such a dedicated and accomplished group of individuals to our Board of Directors,” said Bob Basmadjian, Co-Founder and Chairman of Inspiring the American Dream Foundation. “Ryan, Patsy and Rick bring a wealth of experience and complementary skill sets to our organization. They are a perfect fit as we begin to roll-out our Opportunity to Succeed Program throughout Upstate, South Carolina.”

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About the Opportunity to Succeed Program

Officially launched in February, 2015, Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s Opportunity to Succeed Program has been developed around three guiding principles – teach, share and empower:

  • Teach students about the American Dream, while making the learning experience fun and interesting
  • Share with students the necessary skills and character traits to achieve their American Dreams
  • Empower students by helping them to visualize their personal American Dream journeys

Central to the program is a new and innovative curriculum that has been designed to inspire and challenge students to become proficient readers, while exploring their American Dream. The program highlights specific character traits, like perseverance, which will help prepare the students to achieve their goals in and out of the classroom.

About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society. For additional information, visit www.inspire-the-dream.org

 Media Contact
Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Bob Basmadjian
Tel: +1 864 868-0202
bob@inspire-the-dream.org

Inspiring The American Dream Foundation Teams Up With Local Business And Community Leaders To Inspire The American Dream

Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

– Celebration event introduces foundation’s pilot students to career paths in communications, entertainment, finance, manufacturing and technology –

happy little kid professionalsSunset, SCMonday, May 18, 2015 – Inspiring the American Dream Foundation will be hosting its inaugural Inspire the Dream Career Fair on Tuesday, May 19th at the Embassy Suites Golf Resort & Conference Center in Greenville, SC. The event has been organized to celebrate the achievement of students participating in the foundation’s Opportunity to Succeed Program while introducing them to career paths in communications, entertainment, finance, manufacturing and technology.

Participating organizations include: Bank of America, Barnes & Noble, BASF, CommunityCode, Dabo’s All in Team Foundation®, Greenville Chautauqua, iMAGINE Upstate, Nationwide Insurance, Odetta Music & Publishing, ScanSource and WYFF.

“We are grateful and humbled by the outpouring of support that we’ve received from the education, business and not-for-profit communities here in South Carolina,” said Bob Basmadjian, Co-Founder and Chairman of Inspiring the American Dream Foundation. “There is tremendous momentum around education and workforce development for K-12 students all throughout the State and we’re excited to be part of the reform movement.”

The Opening Ceremony for the Inspire the Dream event will kick-off at 12:45pm when Master of Ceremony, Ryan Heafy, will welcome students from A.R. Lewis Elementary School and the Youth Leadership Academy, both located in Pickens, South Carolina. Mr. Heafy will also introduce representatives from the participating organizations as well as provide students, teachers and parents in attendance with an overview of the day’s activities.

“It’s exciting to see industry and community leaders join forces with Inspiring the American Dream Foundation to invest in the future of our students, giving them support and encouragement to become productive members of society and leaders in the workforce of tomorrow,” said Ryan Heafy, Executive Director, iMAGINE Upstate. “We are honored to be part of an ecosystem that is empowering our future.”

Following the opening ceremony, students will be led on a career exploration, visiting industry-specific career stations that will feature interactive, project-based demonstrations. This part of the program has been developed to emphasize the importance of four key skill sets: creativity and innovation, critical thinking and problem solving, collaboration and teamwork, and communication, information, media and technology.

“At Youth Leadership Academy, we emphasize the importance of citizenship, workplace ‘soft’ skills and real world application of core content,” said Patsy Wood Smith, Principal at Youth Leadership Academy. “Our partnership with Inspiring the American Dream Foundation allows us to take our students to a level beyond career projects and job shadowing, opening their eyes to the possibilities that await them if they work hard and dream big.”

In addition to showcasing the skills required by South Carolina employers, career path demonstrations at the event will also emphasize the importance of certain life and career characteristics such as integrity, initiative, perseverance, work ethic and interpersonal skills. To dramatize and to further illustrate the importance of these character traits, Pat Grills, a Greenville Chautauqua actor, will portray George Washington and engage the students in conversations about the characteristics that the ‘Father of our Country’ relied on to become the first President of the United States of America.

The event will culminate with an Awards Ceremony in the event’s Career Theatre. Here, fifteen A.R. Lewis Elementary 3rd grade students who successfully completed the Foundation’s Opportunity to Succeed pilot Reading Camp will be awarded Congressional Certificates of Accomplishment by Doug McKinney of Nationwide Insurance and Kathleen Swinney of Dabo’s All In Team Foundation. The certificates have been provided by the Office of Congressman Jeff Duncan who helped launch the foundation’s Opportunity to Succeed Program at a presentation he delivered on the American Dream to students at A.R. Lewis Elementary School in April 2014.

“We are very excited about the progress our students made this year during the Opportunity to Succeed Reading Camp program, said Melissa Terry, Principal at A.R. Lewis Elementary School. “Our students have grown in numerous ways and we are very appreciative of the support of the Inspiring the American Dream Foundation in this endeavor.”

“The pilot reading program was a huge success thanks to the tiring work of Bob, his team, the teachers and most important the students at A.R. Lewis,” said Kathleen Swinney, Co-Founder, Dabo’s All in Team Foundation. “The progress made by the children is amazing. We need to keep the momentum going.”

Other organizations providing support for the Inspire the Dream Career Fair include: Banner Bashes, Cornell Dubilier, Duke Energy, EG Image Photography, Fleet Services, Leigh Ann Shelley Graphic Design, SpeedPro Imaging, Steve White Volkswagon & Audi and Williamson Evans.

About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society. For additional information, visit www.inspire-the-dream.org

 

 

Note to Editors and Producers:

 

Four color images, including still photography and B-Roll footage of the event are available upon request

 

 

MEDIA CONTACT:

Robert Basmadjian

Co-Founder and Chairman

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

E-Mail: bob@inspire-the-dream.org

Phone: (864) 868-0202

 

 

 

 

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation Launches Opportunity to Succeed Program

Sunset, SC – Inspiring the American Dream Foundation today announced the launch of its new Opportunity to Succeed program. Financed through a grant provided by Dabo’s All In Team Foundation®, the program is being piloted at A.R. Lewis Elementary School in Pickens, South Carolina, as an After-School Reading Camp for 3rd grade students.

Photo (2015)(02-02) AR Lewis Reading Camp (9)Central to the program is a new and innovative curriculum that has been designed to inspire and challenge students to become proficient readers, while exploring their American Dream. The program highlights specific character traits, such as perseverance and self-control, which will help prepare the students to achieve their goals in and out of the classroom.

Reading materials will focus on American historical figures that relied on these traits to achieve their dreams. Students will be encouraged to make connections between the featured characters’ traits and their own personal behaviors, and to apply what they’ve learned to real-world situations; enabling them to realize the vision that the American Dream is achievable.

“Developing student reading skills is an integral step to achieving success in life, said Kathleen Swinney, Co-founder, Dabo’s All In Team Foundation. “We are so proud of our partnership with Inspiring the American Dream Foundation and the work they are doing so close to home with A.R. Lewis Elementary.”

Officially launched on February 2nd, the Opportunity to Succeed program has several components:

  • community/team building
  • enriching literature
  • student-student and group discussions
  • American Dream projects
  • celebration events to highlight achievement

Each student will determine the communications medium for his or her American Dream project. The projects will reflect on the students’ reading and comprehension of the materials and his or her own journey toward the American Dream. All projects will be student driven, and will be presented in various media forms, including essays, poems, drawings, plays, videos, or PowerPoint presentations.

American Dream projects will be showcased at the school and during a subsequent field trip to Inspiring the American Dream Foundation’s upcoming Inspire the Dream Career Fair. The event will be held on May 19th at the Embassy Suites in Greenville, South Carolina. There, A.R. Lewis third graders will be recognized at an awards ceremony for their successful completion of the reading camp. Local celebrities, Kylie Odetta, Dale Gilbert and Sam Wyche, will also be on hand to inspire and motivate the students and their parents.

“The idea behind this program is to help build reading skills that will enable these students become life-long readers, said Melissa Brown, Inspiring the American Dream Foundation volunteer and curriculum architect. “Young children often struggle with reading and tend to give up quickly. This program teaches skills through fun activities and student empowerment, and highlights the understanding that perseverance and sticking-with-it is part of achieving success. Perseverance, as we all know, is essential for success in life – a key ideal the Foundation wants to impress upon students.”

“We are excited to embark on this journey with Inspiring the American Dream Foundation, said Melissa Terry, Principal at A.R. Lewis Elementary School. “Our hope is for a successful program that will allow students to build confidence and self-assurance as readers and to improve their ability to read.”

Photo (2015)(02-02) AR Lewis Reading Camp (15)About Inspiring the American Dream Foundation

Inspiring the American Dream Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, has been established to help inspire children and young adults to achieve the American Dream, a set of ideals in which freedom, ability and virtue provide the opportunity for prosperity, happiness and upward mobility, regardless of race, ethnicity or social class. By engaging children of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds with an appreciation for the ideals, values and virtues inherent in the American Dream, the Foundation will help prepare students across the country to become independent, prosperous and productive members of society.

About the Albert R. Lewis Elementary School

Albert R. Lewis Elementary School is a Title 1 school located in rural Pickens, South Carolina. The school’s leadership strives to provide its students the opportunity to become proficient readers, critical thinkers, and problem solvers, enabling them to be successful beyond the classroom and participate in a global community. For more information visit, http://arl.pickens.k12.sc.us/

MEDIA CONTACTS

John Eby
SDPC Public Information Specialist
School District of Pickens County
E-Mail: johneby@pickens.k12.sc.us
Phone: (864) 397-1045

Robert Basmadjian
Co-Founder and Chairman
Inspiring the American Dream Foundation
E-Mail: bob@inspire-the-dream.org
Phone: (864) 868-0202