Thank you for your work with Mind Trekkers/Adventures in STEM 2018

From Dr. Allatia Harris, Vice Chancellor, Strategic Initiatives


Dear San Jac Family,

I just wanted to take a moment to thank the many members of the San Jac family who made Adventures in STEM/Mind Trekkers 2018 such a success. We received so many compliments from our schools, with most saying this was the best Mind Trekkers yet. They thanked us for being “kid friendly,” keeping the kids safe, providing so many activities. I stopped in a Deer Park CVS on the way home and saw one of the 6th graders from the day. (He was still wearing his school shirt.) I asked if he had fun, and his mom proceeded to tell me how much fun he had, which experiments he liked best and that he could explain the science behind it. This year, our industry partners not only supported the event financially but also with volunteers who spent time with students during the event.

We had over 500 “volunteers” during the two days of activities. Thank you to the faculty who set up experiments and brought your students. Thank you to the staff who took time from your regular duties to spend time with our 6th graders. Thank you to the leaders who let employees take time to support the effort. We also had plenty of students, faculty, and staff who volunteered on Thursday night to make it possible for us to have all activities available for the families who came.

Thank you to all of you who worked before the event to make the set up complete. To our carpenters who made a last-minute walkway for wheelchair access to activities in the tent, thank you. Thank you to  our electricians who lit the tent. To our IT guys who made so many things work (sound, televisions, mics, and more) – thank you. To our maintenance crews and our cleaning crews (who are so good natured among 4600 kids), you kept us in order and looking good.

Thanks to our Office of Emergency Management and safety team who developed a safety video for “volunteers” and emergency exit maps. Thank you for coordinating with LaPorte EMS. We didn’t need emergency services this year, but thank you for making sure we were prepared. Thank you for leading our bus teams. Thank you to our Police who were such a positive and encouraging yet firm presence among the young people. Thank you to everyonewho said, “Walk. Walk. Don’t run.”

Thank you to video teams who helped us with video before the event and the team that shot video and took pictures during the event.

Thank you to the teams who made sure the volunteers were fed and had water. This was an amazing event – and San Jac rocked it.

Thank you to our Fire Protection students, to our volleyball team, to our North – LVN students. These are groups who came together in significant numbers to work experiments. Thank you to our engineering, chemistry, Robotics, physics, biology, geology and math students. And to all of our faculty and staff.

Thanks to the folks in the Foundation who helped us with our corporate donations and who helped us keep the expense accounts in proper order. Thanks to our friends in the business office who helped us figure out how to manage some interesting charges for supplies.

And a very special thank you to the leaders who worked many hours to make this possible. Yessenia Jimenez, Dr. Rachel Garcia, Rosie Helms, Loli Priddy, and Ruben Ramirez led these efforts. Great work, team. Thanks to the STEM Council and its leadership for supporting this event so well.

Thanks to everyone who helped unload buses, stood watch in hallways, monitored safety in gyms, kept experiments working, and helped put down and take up tarps. Thanks to the volunteers who set up the experiments and thanks to those who helped us clean up. Thanks for helping get students in the activities quickly and safely.

Clearly this is a college-wide effort. When we pull out the stops, we are a formidable force for good.

Volunteers – YOU made this happen, and 4600 6th graders and their teachers and families say, “Thank you.”

Have a great spring break.