Program helps give students a #039;Jump Start#039; on education

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 7, 2003

While some children may be sleeping late and watching television during these last few days before school starts, 88 junior high and high school students are getting a head start on their studies.

The students are taking part in the annual Jump Start program, sponsored by Gear UP and Together We Can. Carol Fugitt, the counseling coordinator for those two programs, said the purpose of jump start is exactly what the name implies.

We hope they learn that academics can be fun, and that academic success is important for post-secondary education."

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The students will spend this week and next week in classes ranging from drama to Spanish to English and art.

In Patty Shively's art class, five students are learning how to make screen print t-shirts. When the class ends, they will have two decorated, personalized t-shirts to show for their effort.

"I like it but it's kind of hard," Dawson-Bryant student Lindsay Marshall, 13, said. Wednesday morning, Marshall was preparing a "Coal Grove Hornets" insignia for screening.

Across the table from her, Jordan Stump had designed her own artwork for screening. One design was of a volcano and palm trees under bright sunshine. A sign at the bottom of the volcano read "Jordan's Hula Lessons."

"This was really hard at first, but she's made it fun," Stump, a 13-year-old Chesapeake student, said of Shively.

The students were learning that their own imagination could take them places someday, if they channel it in the right direction. Caleb Hammond, an Ironton student, had made his own unique design. His picture was off Jeg Peg Leg, a fox who morphs from Native American to Pirate.

"I've made up a whole story to go along with it," Hammond said.

He would like to put his imagination to use someday as a graphic artist.

"They're really into what they're doing," Shively said.

The students will have a technology fair Friday and visit Cedar Point Saturday as part of their Jump Start activities.