Imagine being a middle-school boy when Gov. McAuliffe gives you a tie to add to your wardrobe, or Attorney General Mark Herring, or police chief Thierry Dupuis, maybe an engineer or a man from one of many other successful professions. The tie is yours to keep and proudly wear, a reminder that you, a young gentleman advancing in his education, can be successful, too.
At Falling Creek Middle School, the Gentleman of the Creek, offers such a program. The tie is symbolic, a reminder, and the program’s purpose is to offer academic support, inspire and mentor selected boys from sixth, seventh, and eighth grades.
The boys chosen by core teachers to take part in the program had their kick-off ceremony and first activity Nov. 15 They learned to tie a tie.
The boys had set a goal for what careers they would like to pursue . For inspiration in achieving that goal, they were presented with ties from successful people in that profession, such as the governor, a police chief, news reporters, and engineers.
“The program was started at The Creek [the school] to help our young men develop leadership and communication skills,” said Angela Harris, a teacher at Falling Creek Middle School for six years and the Master of Cermonies for the event. “Today is an opportunity for students to meet some of those who have donated to the program.”
Participants in the program are required to meet from December to April, and to meet with their mentors and special guest speakers for
lunch discussions on the first and third Wednesdays of each month. Dress attire is required; dress pants and shirts were also donated at the tie ceremony.
“Angela [Harris] is a natural at helping youth,” said Vanessa Harris, mother of Angela and supporter of the program. “One of Angela’s abilities is she is currently teaching Special Ed.”
The Gentleman of the Creek Program is in its third year.