A Champion to Inspire Us in the New Year

Every child deserves a champion — an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection and insists that they become the best they can possibly be. Rita F. Pierson

In January 2007, Sci Tech High had a band of approximately 20 members. Since UMass graduate Gary Bernice joined the school, the program has grown to over 500 students.

As part of WGBY’s work as an American Graduate:  Let’s Make It Happen station, Connecting Point contributor Carolee McGrath talked with the inspiring band leader and several members to learn how the band helps students thrive.  Known as the “Pride of Springfield,” the band helps develop students’ leadership skills that go well beyond the classroom.  Not surprisingly, the band has received recognition from all over Western Mass.


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