The BrainWise Program is proud to recognize thirteen outstanding Colorado High School Charter (CHSC) students who have demonstrated exceptional critical thinking skills during the 2010-2011 school year. The students were honored at an awards ceremony Friday, May 27, 2011 in the CHSC courtyard. The students were recognized for two events. First, nine winners of a school wide essay contest, Be BrainWise With Money and second, four students who won awards as Outstanding BrainWise Students
CHSC’s student body competed in a “Be BrainWise With Money” essay contest in which they applied the 10 Wise Ways to managing and saving money. BrainWise and the Rotary Club of Denver Mile High, with help from a grant from First Citizens Bank and Trust Company, held the competition. Students were asked to address challenges to saving money, including writing a one-page essay that described how they would use their thinking skills to address the following problem: “Your cousin scored tickets to a concert by your favorite group, but had to pay top dollar. He will sell you a ticket for $150.00. This concert is sold out and everyone you know is going. You don’t have any cash, and would have to pay for your ticket out of the $1,5000.00 you have saved for college. Write about how would you use the 10 Wise Ways to help you make your decision.”
Sixteen judges, composed primarily of Rotarians, reviewed the essays and determined the nine winners. The first prize for the competition, a check for $150.00, was awarded to Derrick Bunyon who came to CHSC after a teacher at his previous school recommended he drop out. Bunyon also applied and was selected to attend the Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA) camp this summer. The second place award, a check for $100, was given to Ethan Casady. Two students were awarded third place prizes of $75, and five students received fourth place awards of $25.
The awards were presented by Dell Brooks, master BrainWise instructor at CHSC, who commended each of the winners for their knowledge and application of BrainWise skills. Brooks encouraged the students to continue using BrainWise throughout their lives.
Brooks also gave special recognition to four CHSC graduates, whom he had chosen to receive Outstanding BrainWise Student awards. To Jewell Chavira, Brooks awarded the first prize of $100 for “Excellent Demonstration of Critical Thinking Skills Among All Students at Colorado High School Charter.” Isaac Ruiz received the second place award, and a check for $75, Destany Villegas received the third place award, along with a check for $50, and Ruben Mendoza received the fourth place award and a check for $25.
BrainWise wishes to thank Michael Atkinson, senior vice president, and manager of Community Development for First Citizens Bank and Trust Company, and Karen White and Geoff Noble, President of the Rotary Club of Denver Mile High Chapter, for making this exciting event possible. Cyndi Bush-Luna, principal of CHSC, also expressed her gratitude and emphasized the positive impact that BrainWise has had on CHSC students.