RISING STAR EDDY
Honors a high school student in the College Access Program whose success exemplifies the unlimited potential of Philadelphia’s youth.
Manuel Rosado describes himself as “passionate and hardworking” which is evident when you get to know this incredible student. With an unparalleled drive, he changed the direction of his life and future.
Here is his story:
“After the 9th grade year, I wasn’t going to school and I felt like I was worthless, like I had nothing to look forward to. I felt very alone and for months I sat and basically did nothing. I thought to myself – is this what I really want to do for the rest of my life, be nothing, sit here doing nothing, have nothing to look forward to or happen in my life? And that’s when I decided: I need to make change… I have to go back to school and I have to do the best that I can.”
And so he changed his life. Now in his senior year at Olney Charter High School, Manuel has a 4.0 GPA and is the senior class president (he was the junior class president and Prom King, too). He loves that he gets to make big decisions to make the school year special for his classmates. He edits the school newsletter, volunteers at a local library and is going to start volunteering at a local veterinarian’s office. His goal this year is to become Class Valedictorian.
At 17, Manuel has big ideas about where he wants to be in life. He loves science and wants to study biology and pharmaceutical studies in college. After interning in the
pharmacy department at St. Christopher’s Children’s Hospital, he realized he could see himself doing that work in his future. One thing is for sure - Manuel takes advantage of all opportunities that come his way so he can fulfill his potential.
Manuel’s role models are the staff and teachers at his high school who supported him through his years at Olney. Adriana Rivera, his College Access Coordinator, was one of these supporters who opened doors for him. “At school, the people who helped me accomplish my turnaround would be my teachers and counselors. They just inspired me – ‘You can do whatever you want to do, you can be whoever you want to be’ so that just inspired me to go further and to reach for the stars.”
Manuel is proud to be receiving the Rising Star EDDY Award and the Ed Fund is beyond proud to give it to him.
Star alumnus eddy
Honors an outstanding alumnus/a of the Philadelphia public schools who has attained excellence in his or her profession and is an inspiration to the community.
“I think it behooves all of us to do all that we can to ensure that every student in Philadelphia – not just those children of the wealthy, but every student – can get a quality education, one that will prepare them to be the best that they can be.”
- Seth Williams
Seth Williams grew up in West Philadelphia, graduated from Central High School, and became the first African-American District Attorney in Pennsylvania. He serves as a leader in public safety, public health and economic development in Philadelphia and fundamentally believes in the importance of education.
Williams began to value education at a young age because of his role model – his father was a schoolteacher whose life was dedicated to children and learning. Growing up, Williams discovered how to love learning. At Central High School, he met kids from all over Philadelphia and saw the academic potential the city had to offer [Fun fact: One of William’s good friends during high school was none other than current School Reform Commission Chair Pedro Ramos.]
He went on to study at Penn State University, becoming the president of the undergraduate student government, and then to Georgetown Law School. After serving for 10 years as an Assistant District Attorney, he was elected as the District Attorney for Philadelphia in 2009. “Now as a District Attorney, I understand the connection between education, economic development, public health and public safety. I believe to be an advocate for any one of those, you have to be an advocate for all four of them. We have to ensure that we can have a better society and it is all going to start with education.”
Williams remains committed to providing positive educational experiences for Philadelphia’s youth. “I am willing to go anywhere to do whatever I can to help ensure that our public school system in Philadelphia is funded properly and that we move forward so that all students in every corner of this city can get the best education they can, here in Philadelphia.”
Seth currently lives in West Philadelphia and is the proud parent of three girls, Alyssia, Taylor and Hope.
STAR COMMITMENT TO EDUCATION EDDY
Honors an individual or group that has shown extraordinary commitment to education and has made a difference in the lives of public school children.
“Our entire City depends on [public education]. The work that the Mayor does and that we do together around safety and economic development is completely dependent on having a public education system that produces folks who can go into the workplace and be successful, and be great voters, and be great volunteers. All of those things are completely connected.”
- Lori Shorr
Lori Shorr, Ph.D. has been a longtime, passionate supporter of high-quality public education. Starting off as a parent advocate for her children’s public schools when her children were young, Shorr has maintained her commitment to making sure that Philadelphia public school children have someone on their side. Since 2008, she has worked alongside Mayor Nutter as his Chief Education Officer.
A favorite high school teacher of Shorr’s taught her a valuable lesson that has always served her well. Her British Literature teacher - known as the toughest teacher in the school - taught her how to take the most complex literature and find pleasure in reading and understanding it. From this teacher, she learned how to master something difficult and get joy out of the process.
Shorr lives by a message she told her own children: “At the end of the day, effort = ability.” She will continue to put the effort in to building a quality public school system for Philadelphia’s children and charges Philadelphians to do the same. “My hope for the public education system in this City is that we will start to understand public education as a group effort and not as something that people downtown do to kids - that people will see public education as everybody’s business because it affects all of us. Everybody in the community has got to think about what they can do to help a school be the best school it can be. And there is a role for everyone.”
Prior to taking this position, Shorr was the Special Assistant to the Secretary of Education at the Pennsylvania Department of Education. In this capacity, she created and chaired Governor Rendell’s Commission on College and Career Success and served on the Governor’s Job Ready Budget Task Force. Before that, Shorr was the Director of School and Community Partnerships in the
provost’s office at Temple University. She received her M.A. and Ph.D. in English from University of Pittsburgh.
STAR BUSINESS COMMITMENT TO EDUCATION EDDY
Honors a business that makes a difference for public education
“One of the reasons why I work in education is because I read a quote years ago by Marie Montessori. She said, “A president can make war, but only through education can we make peace.”
- Chuck Pennoni
C.R. “Chuck” Pennoni is an entrepreneurial engineer who has worked tirelessly in the Philadelphia community for decades to keep students committed to their education. He believes that, “we cannot focus enough resources in the area of educating our young here in the United States.”
Pennoni has always been a lover of school and education, never missing a day of school from 1st grade through 12th grade, except for when he broke his arm in the 4th grade. After moving to Philadelphia from Northeastern Pennsylvania in 1960, Pennoni began a long history of supporting education in Philadelphia. He earned both his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Civil Engineering from Drexel University and founded his engineering consulting firm, Pennoni Associates, Inc. in 1966.
Pennoni went on to serve as Interim President of Drexel University in 1994-95 and 2009-10, and served as Chair of the Drexel Board of Trustees from 1997-2003, at which time Drexel University’s Honors Program was named after him to honor his contributions to the Drexel community. The Pennoni Honors College is a learning community of student scholars who work to achieve intellectual excellence and personal growth, which reflects Pennoni’s own commitment to education.
His wish for Philadelphia students: “If I could say one thing to students directly, it would be to commit to your education. I would say the same thing to their parents and their families – to commit to their children’s education.”