Heard Around the Watercooler

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Sleepy Hollow High School students present a check to the Make-a-Wish Foundation of Hudson Valley.
Sleepy Hollow High School students
present a check to the Make-a-Wish
Foundation of Hudson Valley.

During their annual Spirit Week in October, Sleepy Hollow High School students collected over 3,000 cans of food for the Tarrytown Food Pantry and raised $1,836.41 from the newest addition to the school’s Spirit Week line-up: Penny Wars. With the winning grade of Spirit Week given the honor of selecting the organization to donate the money raised by Penny Wars, this year’s winner, the junior class, chose the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Hudson Valley. Sleepy Hollow High School’s student government, along with their advisor, Ms. Berry, visited the Make-A-Wish Foundation to present a check. The students learned what the Make-A-Wish foundation does and heard stories from those whose lives have been positively impacted by the altruism of others.


Irvington Middle School students celebrated National French Week (November 2-6) with numerous events that were designed as fundraisers for Doctors Without Borders, an international humanitarian aid organization, raising over $3,500. More than 30 students, who served as French ambassadors, prepared and presented information to their peers. Students shared French expressions each day during the morning announcements, displayed posters they had made about French words and expressions, and participated in daily school-wide contests. French teacher and French Club advisor Deanna Tessler said, “The high point of the week was our French Food Festival, at which we shared Madeleine cookies with everyone at Irvington Middle School as our thank-you. We also sent some Madeleines with that evening’s Midnight Run.”
Dows Lane Elementary School students raised $1,536.47 for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) this year. The UNICEF organization gives children around the world healthier lives and brighter futures by providing food, clean water, medicine, and aid to those in need. The elementary school has been participating in Trick or Treat for UNICEF since 1998. Since then, it has contributed more than $50,000 to the organization; Sarah Carnahan, a beloved Dows Lane teacher who passed away in 2014, spearheaded the effort.


Sleepy Hollow resident and former Hudson Independent Editorial Advisory Board member Wayne Coffey has co-authored a new book with coach Urban Meyer entitled, Above the Line: Lessons in Leadership and Life From a Championship Season. The book was published on October 27 in a hardcover edition by Penguin Random House. Coffey is an award-winning sportswriter and author of three New York Times bestsellers: The Closer (with Mariano Rivera), published in May of this year, Wherever I Wind Up (with R. A. Dickey), published in 2012, and The Boys of Winter (2005). A three-time Pulitzer nominee, Coffey has been named one of the nation’s top sports feature writers by the Associated Press, and is the author of more than 30 biographies and non-fiction books. Urban Meyer is the head football coach of the Ohio State Buckeyes. In 2014, he led the Buckeyes to their first Big Ten Conference title under his tenure. Meyer served as the head coach of the Bowling Green Falcons from 2001 to 2002, the Utah Utes from 2003 to 2004, and the Florida Gators from 2005 to 2010. He is one of only two coaches to win a National Championship at two different schools.


Irvington High School social studies teacher, Courtney Geelan, was honored for her work in advancing women’s rights on December 8th by the Eileen Fisher Leadership Institute (EFLI) at its annual Gratitude Gala. Geelan, who received an EFLI 2015 Life Award, teaches gender studies at Irvington High School. At the gala, which celebrated six years of promoting leadership in young women, Geelan was recognized for bringing EFLI’s mission to the classroom and beyond.

Watercooler_ColorPlease send submissions about distinctions, honors, and awards given to local community members, students, and organizations to: thewatercooler@thehudsonindependent.com

Heard Around the Watercooler wishes our readers a peaceful, healthy, and happy 2016!

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