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CAFE’s 16th annual graduation ceremonies were a huge success. Held in the Kogod Theater, Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center on the campus of the University of Maryland, College Park, on June 8th, the program celebrated the commencement of three students Janene Franklyn, Ian Laurenceau and Kenya Lara. Attendees were entertained by a self-written play produced by the elementary school students; music selections by the Rhythem Starters, Pantones adult ensemble, and Positive Vibrations Youth Steel Orchestra. Each of the graduates have participated in the CAFE program for many years (Ian – 4 years; Janene – 8 years; and Kenya – 12 years). We will miss them very much, and wish them the very best in their future endeavors. The MCs, Delia Gonsalves (WUSA*9) and Abby Charles were superb as was the keynote speaker, Tonya N. Times, Ph.D candidate, who traveled from Sacramento California to participate in the festivities.
Feet were tapping and heads were shakin’ as CAFE instructor and steel pan virtuoso
Victor Provost, along with his Synthesis Quartet, performed at Jazz Night on September
9th, co-sponsored by CAFE and the First United Methodist Church. Victor plays a
mean tenor pan and demonstrated his artistry as both an ensemble musician and
soloist, playing straight-ahead and contemporary jazz that brought the audience to its
feet. He was accompanied by Noble Jolley on keyboard, Nate Jolley on drums, and
Eric Wheeler on bass. If you missed the show, the next time you hear that Victor’s
playing…..RUN, don’t walk, to buy tickets. Those of us who heard him will be clamoring
to be first in line!
The Sept. 9th event inaugurated Jazz in Hyattsville, an exciting new opportunity to hear
outstanding live music in the intimate setting of FUMC’s Fellowship Hall. Proceeds from
ticket sales support constituent services at CAFE and FUMC. Stay posted for future Jazz Night events this fall!
CAFE Mock Trial Coach Joseph Green receives a congratulatory and very encouraging letter from Mrs. Susan Strickland, the coordinator for the Prince George’s County Mock Trial Circuit.
It has happened before that first year coaches get their teams through the play offs. Most coaches who do, are stepping into established programs where at least some of the students have been exposed to Mock Trial before. As long as I’ve been coordinator, (4 years) yours is the first newly organized team to advance to the play-offs. You are also the only newly organized team from a religious/cultural background to ever make it to play-offs. Our private schools do well in the play-offs, as you have seen. But, yours is an after-school program which makes you quite unique.
You should be deservedly proud of your team. I was a pleasure to meet all of you. You will hear from me again as I announce the winners in the next rounds. I will also contact at the beginning of next school year to let you know the status of the program. Funding is always an issue. If you can, please write a letter to the school board letting them know of the impact of our program on your students and encouraging them to renew our funding in this year of budget cuts.
Susan C. Strickland
Circuit 7 Coordinator
Our students were great last night as they competed against DeMatha Catholic High School in an effort to advance to the next level of the Mock Trial Competition. After almost 2 hours of questions, statements, some tough witnesses and several objections, at the Prince George’s County Courthouse in Upper Marlboro MD, DeMatha came out on top. Congratulations and good luck to the young men from DeMatha as they continue on in the competition. Depsite this loss, CAFE is extremely proud of it’s students making it this far in their FIRST year of this competition. Everyone knows CAFE for the steelpan program, which often overshdaows the academic component. The student’s success in this competition goes to show that these kids are determined to succeed over every challenge, musical or academic, that is placed in front of them. These students stepped aways from their instruments, outside of thier comfort zone, and were fearless! Besides teaching students about the law this competition develops critical thinking, research skills, vocabulary, cooperative skills, listening skills and strategic planning. All of these are essential for success. One key stipulation for making it to the second round is that all the participating students of a team must have a GPA of at least 2.5. This, of course, was no problem for our students. CAFE is also extremely thankful for volunteer Lawyer Coach, Wally Christensen (without whom this would not be possible) and volunteer CAFE coaches Trevor Mitchell, Joseph Green and Jennifer Johnson. Also thanks to all the parents, students, board members, college tutors and instructors for coming to the matches and supporting the students in this demanding endeavor. Community support for our Prince George’s County youth is extremely important, and will not be taken for granted. Our students are already talking about competing again next year, so if you missed the competition this time, check these kids out in 2012!
Pictures coming soon!
Mock Trial Participants
Defense Team Lawyers – Anthony Stubbs, Janene Franklyn and Ian Laurenceau
Defense Team Witnesses – Devon Profitt, Tatiana Sindass, Christie Cunningham and Nia Baker
Plaintif Team Lawyers – Osman Adam, Janene Franklyn and Christie Cunningham
Plaintif Team Witnesses – Anthony Stubbs, Nia Baker, Renee Stinson, Tatiana Sindass
Lawyer Coach – Wally Christensen
CAFE Coaches – Joseph Green, Jennifer Johnson and Trevor Mitchell
Congratulations to CAFE High School students as they prepare for the 2nd round of the Maryland State Bar Association Mock Trial Competition! We also want to thank all of the parents, board members, instructors and volunteers for coming out at supporting our students in this extremely beneficial and exciting endeavor. For the first sweet sixteen match students will be going up against DeMatha Catholic High School at the Prince George’s County Courthouse in Upper Marlboro, MD, Tuesday, March 1st at 5pm. If you have not attended a mock trial session yet, then now is the time. Let our Prince George’s County students know they have the support of the community!
This evening CAFE students went up against Gwynn Park H.S. for their final match of the first round of the Maryland State Bar Association Mock Trial competition. Although both teams did an excellent and professional portrayal of lawyers and witnesses, CAFE students came out on top winning by 12 points with a score of 53. CAFE students we are so proud of the work you have done thus far! Let’s hope to make it to the second round!
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