Feb 28, 2013

Youth Leadership Looks at the Future of Education in Visit to Oak Park School District

Dr. Knight Describes the Future of Education

 On Wednesday, February 12th 2013, the  Youth Congress Leadership Program paid a visit to Oak Park High School, a public high school in the Oak Park Unified School District. Listening to the esteemed superintendent of this district, Dr. Tony Knight, gave us an in-depth idea of what it is like to work in education today.  Dr. Knight not only touched on everything in our school system from the types of programs that teachers have to go through to their annual salaries, but he also explained the current state of education. 

However, Dr. Knight warns that getting teacher jobs in today’s economy is difficult and outlined several areas of need that could help us get a leg up on others interested in education. Even though we have been in the school system most of our lives, we bombarded Dr. Knight with questions about education in general at the end of his presentation, to which he answered remarkably. As Dr. Knight said during the lecture, to be a teacher, “you have to wake up happy for Monday mornings,” giving us students a clearer idea and impetus of what it takes to be an educator and what such a prestigious position entails. 

Story by Gilbert Bao from Agoura High School

Feb 25, 2013

Youth Congress Leadership Students Visits Conejo Players Theater

Dick Johnson Explains a Set
Our next stop was at the Conjeo Players Theater. In 1964, the theater was built in a barn with a handful of volunteers working to put on shows each day. For forty years, Conjeo Players Theater has provided the community with a year round schedule of affordable live theater produced to serve the cultural, educational, and entertainment needs of the community. The theater has welcomed and provided an avocational opportunity for all volunteers interested in the theatre arts to participate in the many activities of community theatre. Dick Johnson, executive director, explained how teamwork and discipline are both essential for a play to go smoothly. He explained how the director is basically the overseer. They tell the actors where to move on stage as well as come up with the basic design elements for the show. While the actors and designers do bring their own creative ideas to the table when collaborating on a show, it is the director's job to oversee and make sure it falls within their vision for the show. At last we were given a tour around backstage. We met with the stage carpenter. He helps build scenic elements for theatrical productions. Last, the executive director told us how theatre is for intellectual enrichment. It enriches our mind to feed our brain with pleasure and makes us think about the characters we see on the stage. One way or another theatre is a great intellectual experience. Regardless whether we are playwrights, directors, actors or members of audience, all of us share outcomes of these processes.


Article written by Sowgand Bashiri from Oak Park High School

Feb 24, 2013

Las Virgenes Water District Hosts Youth Congress Leadership Program

 The Las Virgenes Municipal Water District is always one of the most popular venues for the Youth Leadership group. This time was no exception. 
Jeff Reinhardt Explains Fundamentals of Water


All of the photos are by Audasia Ho, from Newbury Park High School.

Feb 13, 2013

300 Attend Senior Congress IX

The Conejo/Las Virgenes Future Foundation's (CLVFF) latest event, Senior Congress IX, Money 101 for Seniors, was a resounding success. The goal of the event was to provide seniors with information about money: "making it, spending it, saving it, giving it." Some 300 seniors packed St. Maximilian Kolbe's parish hall to hear speakers discuss financial issues relevant to senior citizens.

Carolyn Kopp, MS, CSC
In the morning session, former Chair and Trustee Emeritus of CLVFF, Carolyn Kopp, began with a presentation about employment opportunities for seniors. Carolyn has an M.S. in Gerontology and consults for Coast Caregiver Resource Center.  She was followed by California Lutheran University Professor, Harry Starn, whose topic was "Living Within Your Means." Kathy Meyer Burns of  Skyline Financial discussed "Using Your Assets to Improve Your Income," and Katharine Raley of HICAP, Ventura County Area Agency on Aging,  spoke on "Social Security Smarts."
 After a short recess that allowed everyone to stretch their legs, Rudy Gonzales from Southern California Edison spoke about ways of "Cutting Your Utility Costs." That was followed by a talk on "Smart Travel Ideas" by Jeff Posner from the Automobile Club of Southern California  and "Housing Options for Seniors" presented by Alyce Klussman of Affirmative Images. Katharine Raley returned to the podium and provided some excellent information about "Medicare and Long Term Care Choices."

Larry Johnson
Jeff Blum
After a great box lunch from Sprouts, Larry Johnson, from the Pasadena Police Department Financial Crime Unit, spoke about ways for seniors to avoid getting victimized by identity theft, scams and other crimes often directed at seniors. His talk was titled "What Sounds Too Good to be True Probably Is." He was followed by CLVFF Trustee, Jeff Blum, from Raymond James & Associates, who spoke on "Safe Investments for Seniors." The final talk, presented by Jon Muir, also from Raymond James & Associates, was about "Gifting and Estate Strategies."

All Photos by Pat Morgan 

 Thank You  
UCLA Health System, our 32 other Sponsors and our hardworking Senior Congress IX Committee for a job well done. For a list of major sponsors, see the above tab:
 "2013 Senior Congress Major Sponsors.