Charlotte, NC — Today at Allenbrook Elementary School, Spring 2013 mayoral interns Ashley Williams and Rashaun Bennett led a group of fifth-graders in an educational workshop on ecosystems. Williams, a sophomore at UNC-Charlotte, and Bennett, a freshman at Davidson College, chose the project as a way to help further Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx’s youth engagement initiatives. All mayoral interns are required to complete a service project as part of their internship with the Mayor’s office.
“I’m pleased with the work that Ashley and Rashaun did to organize this workshop and educate our young people about the importance of ecosystems and sustainability,” Foxx said. “In addition to supporting the Mayor’s office, I want our interns to get out and help support our community. I’m proud that Ashley and Rashaun did that today.”
Williams and Bennett worked with the local chapter of Communities in Schools, a national organization that seeks to keep students in school, to identify a Title I school that was part of the Project L.I.F.T. West Charlotte zone. After settling on Cynthia Joensen’s fifth-grade elective science class at Allenbrook, the interns reached out to the Mecklenburg County 4-H Cooperative Extension for a curriculum on ecosystems and the environment, and got Davidson College to donate seeds for the lesson.
Today, Williams and Bennett helped the fifth-graders construct their own ecosystems in plastic water bottles and taught them about the critical role ecosystems play in the environment. The interns then played a question-and-answer game with the students on what they had learned and awarded special prizes donated by the Mayor’s office to the winners.