‘Draft Day’ Celebrates Cristo Rey-North Texas Business Work Study Partnership

Bishop Edward J. Burns of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Dallas gave the invocation. Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings served as emcee for a while. Mike’s son, Gunnar Rawlings, executive director of the Cristo Rey Corporate Work Study Program, also helped out. Sports personality Michael “Grubes” Gruber and Erin Hartigan, Fox Sports Southwest host, provided commentary. Even Rachel Lindsay, star of TV’s “The Bachelorette” series, put in an appearance.

Kelby Woodard, Rachel Lindsay, Edward Burns and Mike Rawlings*

The occasion: Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep‘s third annual, NFL-style “Draft Day,” presented by Frost Bank. The event, attended by more than 500 guests, was held at the school on July 28 to match the school’s 148 incoming freshmen and sophomores with their corporate work assignments for the 2017-2018 school year. The students earn more than 60% of their tuition by working one day each week at such iconic North Texas companies as Mary Kay, AT&T, Hunt Oil, Deloitte and Jackson Walker.

Mike “Grubes” Gruber, Erin Hartigan, Mike Rawlings and Gunnar Rawlings*

CEOs or senior leaders from these and more than 100 other companies turned up for the event at Cristo Rey, which is one of 32 Catholic prep schools in the Cristo Rey network. Under the work study program, the school’s economically challenged students receive work experience as well as leadership training.

David Leach and Melanie Duarte*

Noah Barron, Scott Moore and Daisy Garcia*

With top business luminaries in the audience including Greyhound CEO David Leach, PWC Managing Partners Scott Moore and CBRE Vice Chair Jack Fraker, the students were called to the stage one by one to meet their new employers. As they did so they exchanged high-fives and hugs and checked out a variety of “swag” items from their new companies, including logo t-shirts and ball caps.

“This year we are welcoming more than 35 new partners to the Corporate Work Study Program, with job teams now working in Downtown, Uptown, Richardson, North Dallas and beyond,” said Kelby Woodard, Cristo Rey Dallas’s president. “In addition to contributing more than $3 million toward the cost of tuition, the Corporate Work Study Program provides students with hands-on work experience in a real-world setting and a chance to develop leadership skills that will last a lifetime.”

BlueCross Blue Shield of Texas at Cristo Rey Draft Day*

Other companies participating in the school’s Draft Day program included HKS, BlueCross BlueShield of Texas and Tenet Healthcare.

* Photo credit: Tamytha Cameron Smith

MySweetCharity Opportunity: Grove To Grove

According to Grove to Grove Co-Chairs Karen Carney and Patty Langdale,

Karen Carney and Patty Langdale*

Karen Carney and Patty Langdale*

Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep is excited to host its inaugural fall fundraiser, Grove to Grove, which will take place Friday, September 23, at 3015 Trinity Groves and support the school’s mission of bridging the educational gap between North and South Dallas. The evening will kick off at 7 p.m. with a cocktail hour and welcome message from Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, then continue with live entertainment, a seated dinner and silent auction.

“Funds raised at Grove to Grove will directly support students from underserved communities and provide them with a rigorous college prep education combined with valuable professional work experience, enabling them to become men and women of purpose and service.

“Grove to Grove is about fostering a relationship between our school’s community, the Pleasant Grove community, and members of the Dallas business community, but it is also about sharing the infectious message of hope the school is instilling in students. Innovative programs like Cristo Rey Dallas’ Corporate Work Study Program are shaping the future leaders of our city. The model allows students to spend one day a week working at some of the country’s largest and most respected corporations. Through the program, partners like AT&T, Ernst & Young, Hunt Oil Group and KPMG cover 60 percent of students’ tuition costs and provide them with entry-level positions that teach workplace skills and prepare them for a lifetime of leadership.

“We want the entire city to see the positive influence Cristo Rey Dallas is having on its surrounding community and the immeasurable impact it is having on students’ futures through the Corporate Work Study Program. The funds raised at Grove to Grove will allow us to continue the incredible and important work of transforming education and opportunity in our city.

“For more information on Grove to Grove or event sponsorship opportunities, which begin at $1,600, please visit cristoreydallas.org.”

* Photo provided by Cristo Rey Dallas

Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep Held Its Draft Day With Mayor Mike, Mav Maniacs And Media Types For Corporate Work Study Program

Despite being the busiest man in North Texas, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings once again was on the spot to promote education at the Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep Draft Day on Friday, July 29. Unlike last year when he had to video his comments, Mayor Mike was in person along with other well-known types. Here’s a report from the field:

On Friday, July 29, Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep transformed its gym into an NFL Draft-inspired venue, as it announced students’ Corporate Work Study Program partnerships for the 2016-2017 school year!

Draft Day 2016 kicked off as students were lead into the gym by the Mavs Maniacs, whose energy was infectious and quickly got the entire crowd on its feet. The Maniacs proceeded to launch Mavs gear into the roaring crowd as students took their seats in the gymnasium bleachers, cheering and squirming in anticipation of being “drafted” by some of the city’s biggest corporations.

Kelby Woodard*

Kelby Woodard*

Event emcee and Fox 4 Weekend Sports Anchor/Reporter Edward Egros took the stage shortly after 2:30 p.m. to welcome families, charitable executives and students. Cristo Rey Dallas President Kelby Woodard spoke briefly, thanking the inaugural Corporate Work Study Program partners and donors for their support and vision, then introduced Corporate Work Study Program Director Gunnar Rawlings. Rawlings shared details on Cristo Rey’s innovative high school model, which features some of the country’s most recognized businesses hiring students to work entry-level positions in exchange for tuition assistance. He also praised the students for earning “more than $2 million” in tuition aid from the school’s Corporate Work Study Program partners, which include: Hunt Oil, Ernst & Young, CBRE, KPMG and The Boston Consulting Group.

Mike Rawlings*

Mike Rawlings*

Rawlings then introduced his father, Mayor Mike Rawlings, who spoke on the importance of “pulling our city together” and bridging neighborhoods and communities, particularly in light of the recent and tragic police shootings. Mayor Rawlings also addressed recent growth in South Dallas and sited Cristo Rey Dallas and the education it is providing its students as an integral part of the positive transformation taking place within the community.

Mike Gruber, Mike Doocy, Gunnar Rawlings and Edward Egros*

Mike Gruber, Mike Doocy, Gunnar Rawlings and Edward Egros*

Mayor Rawlings then turned things back over to Egros, who introduced the Draft Day panel including: Gunnar, Fox 4 Weeknight Sports Anchor Mike Doocy and sports personality and Music Director for the Dallas Mavericks Mike Gruber. The trio provided color commentary on students as they were “drafted” and eagerly welcomed to the stage to meet representatives from their assigned Corporate Work Study Program company.

A reception for CEOs and company executives followed the festivities. Corporate Work Study Program partners, Cristo Rey Dallas faculty and board members gathered in St. Therese Hall to enjoy post-Draft Day barbeque and refreshments.

Draft Day 2016 attendees included: PwC Vice Chair Tom Codd, Cristo Rey Dallas Board Member/CBRE Vice Chair and Managing Director Jack Fraker, Dieste Chair Tony Dieste, EY Managing Partner Michell Vopni, Firebird Restaurant Group CEO and Owner Mike Karns, KPMG Managing Partner Manny Fernandez, President and CEO of Greyhound Dave Leach, Jackson Walker Managing Partner David Moran and President and CEO of Vogel Alcove Karen Hughes.

* Photos provided by Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep

MySweet2016Goals: Susan Jenevein

According to Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep Director of Development Susan Jenevein,

Susan Jenevein (File photo)

Susan Jenevein (File photo)

“My goal for 2016 is to provide each of our incoming students (100% of whom are at or below the federal poverty level) with a Google Chromebook – a goal of $40,000. Our students do all of their work on these Chromebooks at school, and since many do not have computers or even wireless access at home, these laptops would allow them to do their homework electronically. It is imperative that we are computer-based so we prepare our students for college and future employment.

“We are hoping to reach our goal with a GoFundMe campaign to raise $40,000 in February 2016, providing each of our 128 incoming freshmen with a Chromebook that they will use for all four years at Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep. To help us reach our goal, please visit https://www.gofundme.com/kgnwd6bh.”

Cristo Rey’s Draft Day 2015 Raised The Rafters And Filled The Gym As Students Partnered Up With Area Organizations

The cars filled the Pleasant Grove parking lot at Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep on Friday, July 31, before 2:30 p.m. So much so that the parking lot across the street soon was put into play.

Despite the July heat, suited types like Don Glendenning, Sean Bellomy and Karen Hughes and Cristo Rey frosh class families with babies in tow made their way to the school’s gymnasium. Along the way the guests were greeted with smiles and “Welcomes” by the first class of Dallas’ Cristo Rey.

Once inside the dark gym, it became apparent that this event was going to be busting with participants. One organizer admitted that this turnout was the biggest one so far for the new school.

The draw for the sizable crowd was the Cristo Rey Draft Day 2015. No, the kids weren’t joining the military nor a football team. Instead it was Cristo Rey Dallas’ Corporate Work Study Program where more than 35 organizations were “drafting” the 128 Cristo Rey ninth graders t to work for them part time to help pay for their tuition.

Joe Trahan

Joe Trahan

To add excitement to the big day, WFAA sports reporter Joe Trahan was emceeing the event with Dallas Mavericks/FC Dallas and Fox Sports TV Play-by-Play Mark Followill doing the analysis and Dallas Mike Rawlings doing the official welcome.

Just as the gym filled to a point where a fire marshal would have had blown a gasket, the program commenced with Monsignor Milam Joseph providing the invocation and Cristo Rey Dallas President Kelby Woodward officially opening the day’s activities and admitted that “We’re gonna need a bigger gym next year.”

Milam Joseph

Milam Joseph

Kelby Woodard

Kelby Woodard

But before the draft commenced, Cristo Rey Corporate Work Study Director Gunnar Rawlings was introduced on stage. The place exploded with cheers and applause by students, parents and the suited ones.

Looking out at the sea of people, he looked right at home at the podium with the students in their uniforms seated to his left, the organization reps to his right and the families behind the draftees and drafters.

Gunnar Rawlings and Susan Jenevein

Gunnar Rawlings and Susan Jenevein

With the skill of a proven public speaker, he addressed each of the groups — the sponsors, the kids and the families — with direct eye contact. At one point, he spoke to the parents in Spanish. No wonder he was greeted like a rock star.

Even when Gunnar had to deliver some disappointing news, the crowd didn’t seem to care. It seems that the Mayor had “bailed on us.” Seems Papa Rawlings had been called out of town, but he had sent a video to emphasize the importance of the college preparatory program.

Jorge Thompson, Sean Bellomy and Sebastian Gonzalez

Jorge Thompson, Sean Bellomy and Sebastian Gonzalez

But the day’s real stars were the students in their uniforms with perfect posture cheering for each other and the job partners like A.H. Belo Corporation, AT&T, Bellomy Energy, Boston Consulting Group, CBRE, CitySquare, Corgan & Associates Inc., Cristo Rey, Dallas Heritage Village, The Dallas Morning News, Dal-Tile Corporation, Dieste, Ernst & Young, Fish & Richardson, Grant Thornton LLP, HFF, Hunt Oil Company, Hunton & Williams LLP, ISNetworld, Jackson Walker LLP, Jones Day, KPMG LLP, Lincoln Property Company, Locke Lord LLP, McKool Smith PC, Meadows Collier Reed Cousins Crouch & Ungerman LLP, Mi Escuelita Preschool Inc., MoneyGram International Inc., Navigator Energy Services LLC, Norton Rose Fulbright, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, Santander Consumer USA, Sidley Austin LLP, Southcross Energy, Taxco Produce Co., United Way of Metropolitan Dallas and Vogel Alcove.

As their names were called, the students joined with their new work study organization with Mike and Gunnar providing analysis like, “Andrea has a turtle.”

When the final names were called, 128 students were celebrated by friends and family for their being the inaugural class of Cristo Rey and on a grand journey into education.

Korshak Check To Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep School Had The Wrong Amount Much To The Delight Of School Representatives

There was a problem with the check that Stanley Korshak’s Crawford Brock and his staff presented to Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep on Tuesday, May 19. The amount — $21,300 — was wrong. But more about that later.

Cristo Rey and Stanley Korshak staffs

Cristo Rey and Stanley Korshak staffs

The funds had been raised through contributions from Korshak customers benefiting Catholic college preparatory school in Pleasant Grove.

Beginning in July 2015, Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep will provide economically disadvantaged students of all faiths with a Catholic college preparatory education. The 128 ninth grade students accepted into its inaugural class will enroll in a full course load of college preparatory coursework for four years, as well as participate in a Work Study Program to help fund their tuition. Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep is the 30th School in the Cristo Rey Network of nationwide schools.

Gunnar Rawlings, Kelby Woodard, Crawford Brock, Christine Roman and Tom McNearney

Gunnar Rawlings, Kelby Woodard, Crawford Brock, Christine Roman and Tom McNearney

And what was wrong with the amount on the Texas-size check? It seems that after the display check had been created, more donations came in. The final, for-real check was $21,900 much to the delight of Cristo reps including Dallas Corporate Work Study Director Gunnar Rawlings, Dallas Founding President Kelby Woodard, Dallas director of Academics Christine Román and Dallas Board Member Tom McNearney.

According to Crawford, “We are honored to donate these funds to such a well-deserving organization that is making a tremendous difference in our children’s lives. It is with great honor that the entire store family was a part of these fundraising efforts.”

Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep provides impoverished students of all faiths with a Catholic college preparatory education enabling them to become men and women of purpose and service. Through a rigorous curriculum, integrated with a hands-on professional work experience, students graduate ready to succeed in college and in life.

* Photo provided by Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep