Parents and Students: Here are some aids to winning college scholarships

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Have you heard of RaiseMe? 51 Brien McMahon High School students have and they (as early as 9th grade) are accumulating $626,221 in scholarship funding!

Students who are applying to colleges and universities can use the popular Common App – a digital application system that allows students to apply to any of more than 700 member colleges and universities by filling out an application once online. The same information then goes to each school the student selects.

And yet scholarship applications are still mostly singular applications that require students to fill out the same required information – name, address, personal information, grades, essays – every single time.

The Dell Foundation created Scholar Snapp to solve this problem. Scholar Snapp is a free, easy-to-use solution that allows students to reuse their application information on different scholarship applications. By using Scholar Snapp, students save valuable time and potentially find more funding for college. Scholarship providers can import application data, allowing students to stop being data entry specialists and instead spend more time personalizing their applications resulting in stronger applicant pools. It’s a win-win.

And it’s not just about time. Students from low-income families often don’t have unlimited internet access to apply to applications over and over again. Since Scholar Snapp stores more than 300 fields of information, students can save not only basic information, but also essays, letters of recommendation, and videos.  Remember the Common App above?  They became Scholar Snapp enabled two years ago.

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Parents: there will be a special benefit performance of the Nutcracker at New Canaan High School for Carver kids!

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See the article at the Newcanaanite.com here.

Seating for The Nutcracker is reserved, and tickets are available online. For more information, visit NEADance.com.

There will be an interactive children’s performance of Act II on Saturday, December 8th at 11:00 a.m. and, in the spirit of giving, there will also be a special benefit performance for members of local social organizations such as the Carver Foundation of Norwalk, Person to Person in Darien, and The Boys & Girls Club of Stamford.

The New England Academy of Dance together with New England Dance Theater’s production of The Nutcracker Ballet, now in its 33rd year, is a Fairfield County tradition. The full-length ballet will have three performances at New Canaan High School on Friday, Dec. 7 at 7 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 8 at 4 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 9 at 4 p.m.

NEAD and NEDT’s Nutcracker Ballet is the only full-length production in the region to feature dancers accompanied by a live performance of Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece by the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Jonathan Yates.

This year’s production features over 200 ballerinas from New Canaan, Darien, Wilton, Stamford, Norwalk, Bedford, Pound Ridge and other communities in Fairfield and Westchester counties. Senior Rose Engel stars at the Sugar Plum Fairy dancing alongside fellow classmates Ava Edmonds as Clara and Sophie Hill and Esha Dagli as Marzipan.

The Nutcracker, a classical two-act ballet based on the story by E.T.A Hoffmann, follows the enchanting journey of young Clara, who receives a Nutcracker as a gift on Christmas Eve. In her vivid, come-to-life dreams, her Nutcracker is transformed into a handsome prince, who leads her on a magical journey through an enchanted forest to his Palace of Sweets where she meets the exquisite Sugar Plum Fairy and the people of the Land of Sweets.

Lavish sets and dazzling costumes serve as the backdrop to the extraordinary talent of The Nutcracker cast, comprised of students from the New England Academy of Dance and professional guest artists from New York City performing original choreography by company directors Ted Ortiz, Frances Ortiz and Ginna Ortiz.

“The Nutcracker signifies a magical time of year for people of all ages,” says Ginna Ortiz, one of the company’s directors, “and we are thrilled to give our dancers and our audience the opportunity to experience live performance of the individual pieces of music, bringing each scene to life.”

The Norwalk Symphony Orchestra is comprised of musicians from all over Fairfield County.
“This historic collaboration makes NEAD and NEDT’s Nutcracker one of the very few to be performed to live music in the entire Northeast,” said Music Director Jonathan Yates.

Olympian Julia Marino’s visit to Carver inspires Carver athletes!

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Julia Marino, a native of Westport, has risen to the pinnacle in the snowboarding world both domestically and overseas as one of the best the United States has to offer. After marked success at amateur events and then on the Revolution Tour, Julia Marino put the snowboarding world on notice when she stomped her way to victory at the FIS World Cup/U.S. Grand Prix big air event at Fenway Park in 2016. Marino then officially made it a breakout year with a podium performance in slopestyle at the Corona World Championships of Snowboarding in Yabuli, China. At just 18 years of age, she became the first woman ever to land a double in slopestyle competition and she landed not one but two in the same run--a Cab double underflip and a double backflip. She is a 5-time X Games medalist and 2018 Olympian.

And now Julia is a hero and role model for Carver kids!

Julia and her parents visited with members of the Carver Girls’ Development Program at the Carver Community Center on November 20 evening (along with other Carver students in the Carver Community Center who heard about the visit and joined us). The Fairfield County Sports Commission (FCSC) funds this program (for the second consecutive year). FCSC also sponsors the Chelsea Cohen Fitness Academy at Carver. FCSC Executive Director, Tom Chiappetta, arranged for Julia to visit with Carver students. Shannon Bates, Carver’s Director of Recreation Programs and leader of the Girls’ Development Program, and Carver’s Career Coach, Eve St. Surin, joined the Carver students for this memorable session with Julia.

The Girls’ Development Program serves 25 female athletes ages 13-18 from Norwalk Public Schools. Activities range from fitness and strength training to discussions about injury prevention and college sports scholarships, yoga and Zumba, to nutrition coaching and preparing meals together, as well as guest presentations from college-level and professional athletes, coaches and scouts, such as Julia Marino. Julia discussed the joys of teamwork, the thrill and stress of competition at the highest levels, and her personal goals.  

Julia (“Jules” to her teammates) is one of the world’s most celebrated athletes in snowboarding. The 20-year-old stormed through her rookie XG appearance, taking Slopestyle gold and Big Air bronze at Aspen in 2017. She proved to be no fluke at XG Norway 2017, earning Big Air silver and Slopestyle bronze and becoming the only person to collect 4 X Games medals in 2017. She followed it up with Slopestyle silver at XG Aspen 2018.

See the photos here of Carver students showing off some of Julia’s medals!  

Julia says that looking back on her early X Games success is almost surreal, because when she goes home to Westport, CT, she's just a "normal kid." She is anything but normal to the Carver community. She is a champion who took time out of her intense schedule to value and encourage the personal goals of our students as they each prepare for their academic and athletic careers.

The Conservative Synagogue donates pies to Carver's annual Thanksgiving food drive

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Members of the Conservative Synagogue of Westport, Weston and Wilton gave Carver 74 kosher pies (apple crumb, pumpkin, chocolate cream and pecan), each sold to the public for $23 through its annual Share the Pie fundraiser. Through the fundraiser, individuals can buy a pie for themselves and/or buy one to be donated to local social service charities. Area companies also place orders. The Conservative Synagogue conducts this annual fundraising program in partnership with and to raise awareness and support for Homes with Hope. Aside from helping people find permanent housing, Homes with Hope provides emergency shelter, offers casework and supportive services, and provides food and meals to those in need. The Conservative Synagogue’s commitment to helping the poor also benefits charities like Carver during the holiday season.

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