Education notebook: Georgia College music students to perform concert of original compositions

April 6, 2014 

Bekah McCord, a third-grade student at Southwest Laurens Elementary School in Dublin, was named the winner of the Barrow’s Bookworms bookmark design contest. This is her winning design.


Students in Georgia College & State University’s music therapy program will host a concert April 10 at 6:30 p.m. at Buffington’s in downtown Milledgeville.

Students will perform music they have created, including a song written by cancer survivors participating in the Georgia College Wellness Center’s Survive and Thrive program. Guests also can purchase CDs, which contain some of the songs performed.

The concert is free and open to the public. For more information or to purchase a CD, call 478-445-2645.

Dublin third-grader recognized in Congress

U.S. Rep. John Barrow, D-Augusta, recognized third-grade student Bekah McCord on the floor of Congress. Bekah, a student at Southwest Laurens Elementary School in Dublin, completed the first Barrow’s Bookworms program and designed the winning bookmark for it. “Bekah is an exceptional student and an example to her peers,” Barrow said in his remarks.

The bookmark features happy people holding hands and contains the words, “Wherever you are, you can always be reading!”

Barrow said more than 1,300 elementary school students completed the program, reading more than 27,000 books together. Each student was to read at least 20 books during a semester. Each student who finished is to receive a copy of Bekah’s bookmark.

Peach County High School exchange student offered multiple scholarships

Duc Phung Huu, a Vietnamese exchange student at Peach County High School, is weighing scholarship offers from two college architectural programs.

Pratt Institute in New York City offered him $100,000 to study for five years while the University of Cincinnati offered him $20,000 toward an undergraduate architecture degree.

Last month, Phung Huu described how he progressed in his art skills while studying in Peach County in the last year. He said Advanced Placement art teacher Joel Respess simplified art concepts for him and gave him freedom to create.

Three McDuffie students to attend The Juilliard School

Three graduating seniors at Mercer University’s Robert McDuffie Center for Strings are headed to The Juilliard School.

Violists Jessica Pickersgill, Drew Alexander Forde and Tim Richardson will attend the New York City conservatory, which is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading music schools.

“This good news is validation of a relentless pursuit of excellence over the past seven years,” the school’s founder, violinist Robert McDuffie, said in a message from Germany, where he was performing. “It begins with the students who are talented and dedicated, to the distinguished artists who teach and guide them, and last but not least, a courageous university that has made a significant investment in these young artists who have come to Macon to realize their potential.”

Georgia College hosting Sexual Assault Awareness Week events

The Georgia College Women’s Center is hosting a week of events focused on sexual assault prevention, awareness and recovery.

The scheduled events start Monday and range from a film screening to the 8th annual Take Back the Night rally and survivor speak out, which is an outlet for survivors to share their stories of recovery.

“We focus on raising awareness against sexual violence because research shows us that between 20 and 25 percent of college women will be the victim of a completed or attempted sexual assault by the time they graduate college,” Women’s Center Director Jennifer Graham said in an email statement.

For more information on Sexual Assault Awareness Week, contact the Women’s Center at 478-445-8156 or visit

Tech college board honorsmidstate car dealer

Last week, the Technical College System of Georgia held its monthly board meeting at the Macon campus of Central Georgia Technical College.

The State Board of the Technical College System of Georgia honored Jeff Smith for his support of technical and adult education across the state, according to a Central Georgia Technical College release.

In the past two years, Smith has donated two new cars that have been awarded to the best students pursuing their GED in Georgia.

Also last week, Smith presented a $40,000 electric car to Central Georgia Technical College courtesy of Jeff Smith Ford in Byron.

Deadline for pre-K providers coming up

Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning has posted application packages for new and returning providers of Georgia’s pre-K program for the 2014-2015 school year at

Existing providers of currently funded classes can request expansion classes, while new providers can receive important information about the application review, award process and grant funding. The deadline for all applications is April 23. There are 1,819 pre-K sites statewide.

For more information about becoming a provider in Georgia’s pre-K program, call 404-656-5957 or 1-888-4GA-PREK and ask for the pre-k consultant of the day. You may also email questions to

Writers Andres David Lopez, Jenna Mink, Mike Stucka and Oby Brown contributed to this report.

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