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Double celebration at HMA
Interns and high API
STRATHMORE — Harmony Magnet Academy honored its summer internship programs Friday with a luncheon and assembly.
“This program wouldn’t work without the continuous commitment and dedication of businesses in the community,” said HMA Principal Jeff Brown.
Offered through the Porterville Unified School District’s Charter Pathway Program, 175 students spent their summer with some hands-on experience as interns at numerous businesses around town and in the area.
On hand as guest speaker for the assembly was Bill Kelly of San Francisco, a California licensed engineer, and managing director for SunPower Corporation, a global leader in solar electric systems.
“When I first came out here, I was blown away by this place. I was so impressed by this school, the community and companies supporting the school,” Kelly said. “It’s just a really cool thing you guys have here.”
Kelly, who said he grew up in Maryland in a community similar to Porterville, offered a bit of advice.
“I strongly encourage you to take risks,” he said and talked of his courage in applying to western state schools, a risk leading to acceptance into Stanford University. “That was scary, but looking back at the risk, I loved California and the opportunity to study here.”
He also talked about collaboration and the difference it can make when compared to individual achievements.
“Finally, you guys should not think of the future too much,” he said. “Don’t worry about the future. What’s really important is right in front of you. If you do a good job and excel, great. I’m envious of you all and believe the future you face is really promising.”
Following Kelly’s talk, Brown addressed the students being honored.
“We’re here to celebrate your accomplishments as being outstanding ambassadors,” he said. “We continue to support these efforts as you continue to strive for excellence.”
After announcing the interns will be treated to lunch, he addressed the rest of the student body sitting in the stands.
“It has been said knights are keepers of wisdom and grace,” he said. “We are extending this celebration to you.”
Brown went on to announce that HMA obtained a Tulare County high with its Academic Performance Index score of 882 — a feat, he said, that would be rewarded with cake and ice cream for all.
Contact Esther Avila at 784-5000, Ext. 1045. Follow her on Twitter @Avila_recorder.