From Teacher to School Implementation Manager

I am lucky to spend the majority of my job with the people who undertake some of the most important work on the planet: teachers.

As an EverFi implementation manager, my role is to support teachers’ instruction, and enhance student engagement and achievement through EverFi’s digital curricula. I have the opportunity to work with district and school leadership, along with teachers, on a daily basis to ensure smooth adoption of our learning courses. This includes collaborating with educators to determine placement for our curricula, training teachers to use our resources, assisting with classroom implementation and providing support. As a former educator, I know that teaching entails so much more than what meets the eye. Being an implementation manager enables me to help teachers innovate in their classrooms in a way that allows them to focus their time and energy on what matters the most – students.

oak hill vaultIt is truly my passion and privilege to bring EverFi’s courses to students in my hometown of Jacksonville, Florida. Some of the amazing educators I work with include my former teachers, colleagues and friends – I even work with my own former students. Whether it’s teaching a high school senior about paying for college or changing a middle schooler’s mind about cyberbulling, EverFi’s lessons address some of the most pressing needs in today’s classrooms. When part of a teacher’s repertoire, EverFi has the ability to impact the lives of kids who will shape our community for the better.

I recently worked with Michelle Harcourt, who oversees the Fresh Futures summer youth employment program for students from low-income families. Students complete EverFi – Financial Literacy alongside their summer jobs so that while they are earning money, they are learning how to be financially responsible. One student recognized that her mom would benefit from the course, so she decided to go through it with her. Now they talk about money as a family, something they never did before. 

Implementation managers also have the opportunity to engage with community partners regarding the sponsorship of our courses. By bringing EverFi to teachers and students, I help bridge partnerships between them and the generous sponsors who have a stake in the health and success of schools.

From a sponsor meeting in an office with a skyline view, to a school’s tiny computer lab full of 4thgraders, no two days as an implementation manager are ever the same. What does remain constant is that I am always challenged, humbled and completely connected to the work and mission of EverFi – impacting the lives of students.

Learn more about becoming a Schools Implementation Manager at EverFi.

EverFi Helps Bring Pharrell Williams Home

Saturday, June 7, marked an incredibly exciting day for EverFi as we teamed up with Grammy award-winning producer and performer Pharrell Williams and his educational non-profit From One Hand to AnOTHER to launch a new community education initiative in his hometown of Virginia Beach, VA.

While Pharrell is widely known for the mega-hit “Happy” that topped the charts and made him a global pop phenomenon, he is also a tireless advocate for education. He has a deep and very genuine commitment to providing underserved youth with the educational tools they need for success. On Saturday, he returned to his alma mater, Princess Anne High School in Virginia Beach, for the first time since graduating 22 years ago, to headline an event organized by EverFi announcing a new educational partnership.

Beginning this summer, EverFi will provide digital learning opportunities to students attending the Summer of Innovation Camp coordinated by From One Hand to AnOTHER in Virginia Beach, VA. Designed to spark student interest in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), the camps will reach over 500 students in third through eighth grades and provide them with Ignition – Digital Literacy & Responsibility™ and Vault – Understanding Money™, two of EverFi’s web-based courses designed for elementary and middle school students.

Pharrell Williams Virginia Beach Key to the CityAs part of our multi-year commitment to From One Hand to AnOTHER (FOHTA), EverFi will also be working with Pharrell’s team to expand the partnership and provide additional digital learning experiences to schools across Virginia Beach and beyond as FOHTA’s reach grows nationally.

On Saturday, more than 800 students, administrators and Virginia Beach community members filled the gymnasium of Princess Anne High School and were abuzz as they anticipated the arrival of their most famous alum — using the hashtag #PharrellComesHome in a show of pride.

After a rousing introduction from local celebrity and Princess Anne High School alum Brandon “Shaggy” Stokes and EverFi Co-Founder Ray Martinez, Pharrell entered the gymnasium alongside his mother as the school marching band performed a rendition of “Happy.” He took time to mingle with the crowd and shake hands with current and former teachers, including his band teacher Alan Sharps, who had a formative impact on his teenage years.

Pharrell spoke with the students about the impact that educators had on his development as a student and musician.

“I just want to stress the importance to you guys — that even when you feel like you’re failing, even when you feel like you don’t have it – I felt that way. My grades were not the best, I’m telling you right now. But none of my teachers gave up on me,” he said. “Life is like a mosaic. It’s a bunch of pieces. I’m just one piece. But the rest of the pieces are my teachers who kept pushing me.”

Pharrell Williams and Ray Martinez of EverFiRepresentatives from the office of Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe announced an official proclamation naming June 7, 2014 as Pharrell Williams Day across the Commonwealth of Virginia. Virginia Beach Mayor Will Sessoms presented Pharrell with a key to the city. Princess Anne students presented Pharrell with a custom painted skateboard and pair of sneakers, along with a 2014 school yearbook signed by thousands of students.

Saturday’s event put a major spotlight on the importance of providing unique educational experiences and mentorship opportunities to develop tomorrow’s leaders. We’re incredibly fortunate to be working together with one of the world’s great creative forces and education advocates to call attention to that need.

Read the full press release 

On the Native American Reservation with American Express

Montezuma Creek_Twin Rocks
One of the greatest strengths of the EverFi Network is our ability to impact communities in every corner of our nation – no matter how remote.

Montezuma Creek, Utah is one of those places. A six-hour drive from Salt Lake City, Phoenix or Denver, Montezuma Creek is a community of just 500 residents in the Navajo Nation, a semi-autonomous Native American-governed territory. It is also home to Whitehorse High School, a low- to moderate-income public school that serves free or reduced lunch to 93% of its students.

“One of the biggest issues is that we are long ways away from everything,” said Whitehorse High School Assistant Principal Kim Schafer. “We are two hours away from the grocery store, an hour from the closest community college. Unless organizations are reaching out to us, we are not going to have the same type of opportunities that students in a city would have. There is no music theatre. There is no bank here. Students just aren’t exposed to the same experiences.”

In 2010, EverFi partnered with American Express to provide our financial education platform to public schools across San Juan County, Utah. Today, the American Express Financial Scholars Program has reached more than 1000 students across 17 high schools. In the last academic year, students’ financial knowledge scores rose by 31% after completing the program.

Last month, we had the honor of attending a certification event at Whitehorse High School to recognize students for their achievement. The highlight of the event was a visit from Navajo Nation Vice President Rex Lee Jim, who addressed students and encouraged them to reflect on the opportunity they now have to break the cycle of poverty and payday lending that has plagued the Navajo community in recent years.

We had the opportunity to sit down with teachers, students, and Vice President Jim to hear how this program is impacting the local community, and you can watch it here.

American Express Financial Scholars

Every day, EverFi is working to connect the dots between schools who are eager to innovate and corporate partners who are eager to fund this innovation in our nation’s schools. The American Express program is a shining example of public-private partnerships that truly move education forward.