Western NY, Northern Pa. Educators transformed during workshop;
| | April 28, 2003
BUFFALO, N.Y. --
United State Marine Corps Recruiting Station Buffalo, N.Y. conducted its annual Educator Workshop at Marine Corps Recruit Training Depot Parris Island, SC, April 1-4.
The Educator Workshop is a program designed to educate the educator about the Marine Corps by immersing them in the recruit training process.
Recruiting Station Buffalo's Commanding Officer Maj. Lawrence Landon, a native of Tacoma, Wa., and Executive Officer 1st Lt. Larry Dibble, a native of Dekalb, NY, hosted 22 educators from RS Buffalo's area of responsibility which spans from Buffalo to east of Syracuse, south into the bordering counties of northern Pennsylvania and west to the Ohio border.
The 22 educators in attendance were all that was left of a pre-war attendee list of 40 educators and media personnel with 15 additional educators and media on a stand-by list.
All the attendees gave positive feedback regarding the Educator Workshop.
"This is an excellent PR (public relations tool) for the Marine Corps," said Karen Raccuia, superintendent of Canisteo Central School in Canisteo, NY.
"I learned a great deal about the Marine Corps training, and so many opportunities were provided. I felt the workshop was thorough, casual yet structured well," Raccuia explained. "Every one of the Marines we had contact with were so knowledgeable and obviously so dedicated to the Marine Corps and military in general. I gained a lot of respect and admiration for these Marines, and am proud to have met them."
Michael Hall, superintendent of Oakfield-Alabama Central School District in Hornell, NY, said, "This was an excellent trip. I am very impressed with the entire trip and the Marine Corps... a class act in every respect."
"This workshop was the most enjoyable and worthwhile venture of my career. The staff that organized this was world class," stated Terry Brown, Director of Athletics at Wayland-Cohocton High School in Wayland, NY.
"Though all aspects of the trip were enjoyable, the part I enjoyed the most was the meal I ate with the recruits. This allowed us to witness the dedication and determination that each of these recruits had," Brown explained.
He added that the drill instructor escort was equally as valuable. "The time spent with Drill Instructor (Staff Sgt.) Catledge was a memorable and positive experience."
Kristine Arbogast, a teacher at Coudersport High School in Coudersport, Pa., explained that she first learned of the Educator Workshop when she saw it on a television news program. She also said, "Nothing I had read or known from family in the Marines compared with my experiences in this workshop."
All the educators in attendance were enthusiastic about recommending the trip to other educators.
According to C. Michael Robinson, the Managing Principal of Rochester City Schools in Rochester, NY, the Educator Workshop had a significant enough impact on his understanding of the Marine Corps to motivate him to recommend more educators from the Rochester City Schools attend future Educator Workshops.
"I would recommend a team of Rochester City educators representing all high schools (attend the workshop). Given that I supervise all the high schools, I would welcome the chance to coordinate this," Robinson explained.
"I think it would be valuable to contact our school counselor," Brown stated.
"I will promote this program to all guidance counselors and American Government teachers. This program is a 'must' for them," said Joe Williams, a teacher at Southern Tioga School District in Mansfield, Pa.
Many of the attendees had suggestions on how to use the workshop to strengthen the educator-recruiter-student triangle to better meet the needs of all involved in the education and recruitment processes.
"Physical Education teachers and coaches have unique relationships with students. I think it would be beneficial if recruiters would communicate more with these people. Coaches are great judges of character and I think, at least at Wayland-Cohocton, that recruiters would be well served to tap this resource. I welcome the opportunity to help a recruiter in anyway possible," Brown explained.
Stephen Keefe, principal of Brocton High School in Brocton, NY, directed his statement towards Marine recruiters and recruiting personnel, "Visit my school and I will introduce you to other educators."
When asked what he would like to see added to the Educator Workshop, Robinson replied, "A discussion with parents about how the school personnel can best assist with the recruitment process."
All the educators who attended expressed a desire to tell their students about the Marine Corps.
"I learned so much and can't wait to share it with everyone, especially my students," explained Elizabeth Rossington, a Science teacher at Greenwood Central School in Greenwood, NY.
"I look forward to introducing myself to the recruiter and talking with students who may be interested in pursing a career in the Marine Corps," Brown stated. "As Director of Athletics at Wayland-Cohocton, I was proud to be the first employee to attend the workshop"
Although the workshop was cut short due to the 7:15 a.m. return flight out of Charlotte, S.C., the educators were still afforded the opportunity to witness the Emblem Ceremony April 4.
"The ceremony was a very moving experience," said Michael Renne, business manager of Phelps-Clifton Springs Central School District in Clifton Springs, NY. "I had tears in my eyes watching new Marines reuniting with their families. I could see the pride they felt at finally becoming a Marine."
"I have a great appreciation for the Marine s after this workshop," Renne added. "The Marines are an outstanding unit and I am proud that these young men and women are putting their lives on the line to protect our freedom."