Chef Charles B. Ziccardi, assistant teaching professor of Culinary Arts at Drexel, showing children garden-fresh ingredients during Inspire a Child to Dream Day.
Inspiration is the goal of the event, and inspiration is what happened last week.
During Drexel’s annual Inspire a Child to Dream Day, a Take Your Child to Work-style event for Drexel employees’ children, approximately 150 kids got to experience the best of what Drexel has to offer through hands-on activities last Thursday.
Children who attended wrote, created, discovered and designed, among many other activities, in a fun-filled day designed to stoke their imaginations and aspirations.
“The kids really enjoy the different break-out sessions that we offer,” said Chantell Bowman, programs and events coordinator with Drexel Human Resources and one of the event’s organizers. “They’ve had a really good time. They’ve formed friendships.”
It was a full day, with sessions like an introduction to fashion design, finding out about how genetics work, learning what video game designers do every day, and eventually outdoor games and sports to play.
Kids playing soccer during Inspire a Child to Dream Day at Drexel.
Althea Wallace, director of events and programs in Human Resources, said the event is collaborative and the result of help from the volunteers and University’s various colleges, schools and departments that hosted programming.
Putting together something like that is no quick feat. Bowman and Wallace both worked late into the night the day before. Bowman left the office at 10:45 p.m. She said Wallace didn’t leave until 1 a.m.
Then they were both back at Drexel at 6:30 a.m.
“It’s madness. It’s chaos. But it’s all come together,” Bowman said. “It’s all worth it for the kids. They’re really, really enjoying it.”
One of the kids that made everything worth it was the son of Patrice Tremoulet, PhD, associate professor in the College of Computing and Informatics.
Assistant Professor Alphonso McClendon, Department of Design in Westphal College of Media Arts & Design, teaching fashion design during Inspire a Child to Dream Day.
Her son couldn’t wait to take a tour of Mad DragonStudios , so much so that the 7-year-old went with a group of 11-year-olds to get the experience.
“The experience of helping create a soundtrack with the studio was absolutely priceless,” Tremoulet said in a note thanking Wallace, Bowman and the volunteers who helped out. “He definitely came away inspired.”
Matthew Jolles, a student and spirit leader of the DAC Pack, was on hand to teach the attendees Drexel’s fight song and the Four “D” chant. He said an event like Inspire a Child to Dream Day encourages children to strive for the very same goal he and other students held.
“I know, for a lot of us and me, specifically, when I was going through high school, the dream was to get to Drexel,” Jolles said. “To be able to start at young ages and say, ‘You can dream of going to college’ is something that’s important.”