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What Did You Learn at Summer Institute?

In 1989, AVID Center held its first Summer Institute (SI) with 258 educators. We’ve grown a little bit since then—more than 28,000 educators joined us at our 10 Institutes during the 2014 SI season! Our AVID Center staff is always left awestruck by the amazing teachers, counselors, administrators, and district staff who join us each summer. You inspire us, and we’re honored to be a part of your efforts to help all students succeed.

We asked five SI participants to share some of the key lessons that they learned during their professional learning at SI this year, and we want to hear from you, too!  

  • “As a school team, we were able to come back, brainstorm, and create a goal for incorporating AVID—specifically WICOR—in our classrooms that is consistent across grade levels and building-wide! Summer Institute gave me a great opportunity to actually team with my coworkers and reminded me why I became a teacher!”
    – Carrie Schindler, 5th Grade Language Arts Teacher, Franklin Primary School
  • “The lasting effect that I learned from my strand during Summer Institute was the difference between equity and equality. Equality is everyone getting the same tools despite the disadvantages or advantages that every student faces. Equity is leveling the playing field for all students, to encourage students to look at their strengths instead of their disadvantages. Not just in the classroom, we can apply the same methods to everyday life, to focus on the strengths to create a healthy society for everyone we come in contact with on a daily basis.”
    – Orlando Hill, 9th/10th Grade Algebra and Geometry Teacher, Shepton High School
  • “The Pilot/Co-Pilot Socratic Seminar provides a unique spin on the traditional Socratic Seminar by adding two ‘wingmen’ to each participant. It helps to include students who may be shy or just reluctant to share their ideas in front of the class. Since many teachers at my school utilize Socratic Seminars, I'll be sharing the Pilot/Co-Pilot method in professional development this year!”
    – Gordon Copee, AVID Coordinator and Elective Teacher, Chesapeake High School
  • “AVID is definitely for college and career readiness. The recent introduction of AVID for Higher Education’s Career & Technical Education (CTE) strand, of which I've had the privilege of being involved, was a tremendous experience at Summer Institute. I believe their CTE students will benefit from the AVID tools they'll use to develop the technical and soft skills they'll need as they enter the workforce.”
    – Dr. Rachel Torres, Associate Dean, Odessa College
  • “Instead of Opportunity is NOWHERE, Opportunity is NOW HERE.
    – Michelle Rivard, M.A., AVID Liaison and Faculty, Minnesota School of Business
    (Click here to read a blog from the Minnesota School of Business about AVID for Higher Education.)

 Tell us what you learned at Summer Institute in the Comments section below!


For more on AVID, visit http://avid.org/what-is-avid.ashx.

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Reader Comments (7)

As a staff developer and cheerleader for AVID, it's great to read how AVID SI is transforming the minds and hearts of educators and, consequently, having a positive impact on the lives of millions of college-bound students. Keep the comments coming! I'd love to read what everyone learned at SI.

Thinking back on my first SI experience as a participant, I took away the idea that AVID methodologies are for all all students, not just the ones in the AVID elective. The result was more deliberate teaching that capitalizes on the strengths of each student and provides scaffolding whenever it's needed.

September 5, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterCraig McKinney

Thanks so much for these insightful comments, "Opportunity is Now Here" is wonderful! My first Summer Institute changed my entire life. I left feeling validated to live my work as a teacher. The charge we have since Institute is to put those inspirations, thoughts and words into actions giving our passion gravitas within our work. WICORIZE, facilitate, coach, extend those impactful experiences from Institute into your classroom each day. Affirm each students' strengths - persevere through challenges and know that you are not alone.

September 5, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJeanie Greenidge

I had the privilege of attending 4 AVID Summer Institutes in the summer of 2014. At 2 of those (Indianapolis and Orlando) I had the honor of being a staff developer for the Culturally Relevant Teaching: Empowering Students strand. What I learned is that we are NOT waiting on Superman! Super men and women were there in mass and were serious about closing the achievement gap by preparing ALL students for college readiness and success in a global society. I also learned that the true superheroes do not wear capes. They teach in the public school system. Each and every day these folks do whatever it takes to make sure students are served and educated so that they will be able to pursue any endeavor toward their postsecondary goals upon completing high school. I am in awe of the professionals that attended the SI and the level of work and rigor in which they engaged while there!

September 5, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterPatrick Briggs

AVID Summer Institute has never failed in delivering the greatest trainings for teachers to take back and implement with students. As soon as I leave, it seems I'm wishing for school to be back in session. I can't sleep because my brain is overloaded(in a good way) with new ideas and strategies. It is the only training I look forward to. I love being surrounded by educators with the same goals, attitudes and determination to close the achievement gap and help ALL students with their college dreams.

September 5, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMelanie Alvarez hall

I have had the honor of being both participant and staff developer multiple times. Three words sum up my experience: rigor, relevance, relationships. Every moment spent engaged in an AVID Summer Institute enhances my abilities at those three R's. Twelve years into my AVID journey, I can honestly state that my greatest regret is that my first five years of teaching occurred before I had ever heard of "AVID." I happily wake every morning employing AVID strategies that automatically increase both the rigor and relevance of the material I facilitate (not teach) while simultaneously developing relationships with my students, colleagues, and AVID SI partipants. Every action means one more likely college and/or career ready student, which I consider golden footprints in the sands of humanity. Thank you AVID.

September 5, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMarie Walker

To quote Dr. Husk's blog entry at the beginning of this school year, "Teachers, though, are our special heroes…" and I could not agree more. This recent blog is the evidence that AVID Summer Institute participants are moving ahead at their sites with elements from their strands that will impact SCHOOLWIDE!
As an AVID Elective Teacher, you often start small and move through the process and this is a testament that AVID Summer Institutes are impacting schools and not just an AVID Elective Class or AVID "Program"…full steam ahead with your school wide endeavors our AVID superheroes. These participants are the catalysts for changing lives forever from the elementary level through secondary and on to higher education and I am glad to be a part of the AVID Universe!

September 6, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan Petrick

Thank you for your great insights and interesting blogposts! Would you consider writing a blog post about Eliademy. It is company that strives to democratise education with technology. Check them out, they are growing fats. Thank you in advance.

September 8, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJanncia

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