“Our SVPAZ Experience: Partners Reflect on SVP’s Evening with Rodel”, Jerry Barnier and Julie Johnson discuss their experience.

Apr 9, 2015

Jerry and I had a great time hosting SVP’s March educational event.  We were honored to have Jackie Norton, the CEO of the Rodel Foundation, speak about public education in Arizona and the focus of the Rodel Foundation.  We enjoyed networking with SVP Partners who we’ve never met before and hearing other people’s opinions and thoughts surrounding the education system here in Arizona.  Learning about the emphasis the Rodel Foundation puts on math was particularly interesting given that a student’s aptitude for math is developed as early as the third grade.

Growing up my mother always said she had this inability to do math and even as an adult she remarked how she had a mental block for math.  Jackie told the crowd how she had a similar mindset but recently made a purposeful shift of her thinking after realizing that “the ability to do math or not is not in someone’s DNA”.  Personally, I have always loved math, and my love of the subject made me pursue engineering in college. As math is integrated into the majority of careers in our society, especially careers that impact the lives of many people, it is imperative that students hone this skill whether creating a concrete frame on a construction site at Suntec Concrete or creating a new software program or a cure for cancer.

The Foundation’s Exemplary Teacher and Principal Initiatives also develop leaders within our education system, a notion that Jerry and I very much appreciate as we have been involved with Teach for America for many years. We feel passionate about bringing quality education to all students in Arizona in order to create great minds for our world and leaders in our community. We look forward to engaging everyone at the next SVP event and developing more friendships to share in this journey as we work together to make a positive impact in our world.