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Clarkson-based Xerox Urban-rural Educational Partnership Enters Fifth Year Of Helping Young Students
The Xerox Urban-Rural Educational Partnership, a joint venture between the Xerox Corporation and Clarkson University, has entered into its fifth year. Five graduate students make up the Xerox Partnership Team, under the direction of advisers Sandra L. Zuhlsdorf, coordinator of corporate and educational partnerships, and Economics Professor A. John McDonald.
The partnership’s mission is to enhance the lives of young people by using technology and creativity as a vehicle to increase cultural awareness, career development, leadership, and team-building skills. Three New York state schools are participating in the program, including Colton-Pierrepont Central School and Parishville-Hopkinton Central School in St. Lawrence County, and Charlotte Middle School in Rochester. Having participating schools in different geographic areas allows the children to note the differences, and more importantly, the similarities that they share.
The team met with all three schools in October to obtain feedback from previous years as well as to develop new ideas for the future. During the process five key components were identified to be developed throughout the year. Those components -- team building, leadership, cultural awareness, career development, and creativity-- will be incorporated into such activities as career assessments, mock interviews, visits to the Clarkson University campus, an introduction to the Clarkson Solar Racing Team, Web page development, and an e-mail pen pal activity. Other educational activities are also planned that will help to improve technical and communication skills that are vital in today’s continuously rapid evolving society.
As part of the team building curriculum, 65 students from Parishville-Hopkinton Central came to campus last December to see the Clarkson-Niagara hockey contest. Before the game, the students had the opportunity to meet with members of the Clarkson team. The players stressed the importance of teamwork and how it helped them achieve their success. Students then had a chance to ask the players questions and many of the youths were thrilled to receive autographs from the players.
The year will be topped off with a conference held on the Clarkson campus. The students from all three schools will come together for two days of activities that will reinforce the five key components stressed last October, and allow them to interact with each other in a relatively informal but educational setting.