Ambridge Area School Board of Directors approved the transfer of Mr. David Turk to the newly-created 10-month position of Middle School Assistant Principal at the July 17 meeting. Mr. Turk previously served as a health and physical education teacher at Ambridge Area High School since 2011. He will begin his duties immediately at an annual salary of $70,000.
Mr. Turk holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Health and Physical Education from Slippery Rock University (Pa.) and earned his Pennsylvania Teaching Certification in Health and Physical Education. He also holds a Master of Education degree in School Administration (Principal K-12) from California University (Pa.).
He began his professional career in the Pittsburgh Public Schools in January 2010, where he served as a substitute teacher at Perry High School. He later became a building substitute with Pittsburgh Public Schools, serving in a variety of roles including Assistant to the Administration and Assistant Technology Technician. He was hired by Ambridge Area School District to work as a health and physical education teacher, a position he held from 2011 to present.
Mr. Turk said he is looking forward to serving in his new role at the Middle School, and thanked the School Board for providing him with the opportunity. “I appreciate the opportunity that I’ve been given, and I look forward to working with all of the Middle School staff and most important of all, I look forward to working with the students,” he said.
Superintendent Dr. Jo Welter said Mr. Turk will be an incredible asset to the Middle School. “His focus is on a mentorship program for the Middle School students so that our students have guidance and mentorship from the minute they enter the school until the time they leave, and so parents have a dedicated liaison. I’m very excited to have him working with us.”
State Street Elementary School held its Popsicle "Meet-and-Greet," which is a great way for students to meet their teachers for the 2019-2020 School Year and to get acclimated to the school. Thank you to those who helped to make this event a success!
The American Heart Association, the world’s leading voluntary organization focused on heart and brain health, is celebrating final passage of Senate Bill 115 (Tom Killion, R-Delaware), legislation which will ensure all Pennsylvania high school students are trained in Hands-Only CPR. The bill will be headed to the governor for his signature.
Senate Bill 115 brings Pennsylvania’s CPR training standards in line with that of thirty-eight other states, including all states surrounding Pennsylvania. “Passing this bill was critical and a primary focus for our volunteers and staff at the American Heart Association,” said Deb Banks, executive director of the American Heart Association, Greater Pittsburgh. “The survival rate for sudden cardiac arrest drops by 10 percent every second bystander CPR is not performed. Teaching Hands-Only CPR to young adults will ensure a way to bring thousands of confident and trained rescuers into our community each year.”
In step with this bill and to celebrate National CPR and AED Awareness Week (June 1-7), Ambridge Area High School students ended the year on Thursday with an important assembly to announce the Hands Only CPR in Schools training program that will be part of the curriculum in the fall. Thanks to the generous funding from FedEx Ground, more than 800 students will learn this lifesaving skill.
“The American Heart Association appreciates the community of supporters who were incredibly helpful in providing feedback, which led to a strong bill that earned unanimous support in the House and Senate. This is the perfect example of how a diverse group of organizations can come together around a common goal and impact our communities,” Banks added.
Over 350,000 people suffer from sudden cardiac arrest in the United States each year, and four out of five cardiac arrests occur in the home. Often, bystanders do not know how to start CPR or are afraid to perform it incorrectly. However, anyone can perform Hands-Only CPR by remembering just two easy steps.
Call 9-1-1 if you see a teen or adult suddenly collapse.
Push hard and fast in the center of the chest until professional help arrives.
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The Class of 2019 Commencement Ceremony was held on Thursday evening at Ambridge Area High School, with 180 graduating seniors celebrating their success and expressing excitement for their next journey in life. Student speaker for the evening was Dalton Brandt, Senior Class President.
Superintendent Dr. Jo Welter introduced the new inductees. They are:
Dr. Dianne Kasnic Prinz – Class of 1956
The late Dr. Dianne Kasni Prinz was a 1956 alumnus. Dr. Prinz held a doctorate degree in physics from John Hopkins University and was a space scientist for the Naval Research Laboratory. In the 1970s, Dr. Prinz was the first woman selected to be trained as a payload specialist y NASA, and was scheduled to be sent into space. Her flight was cancelled following the 1986 Challenger explosion. She worked in a field dominated by men. In the early 1970s, when she was an official involved in a satellite launch at the White Sands Proving Grounds in New Mexico, Dr. Prinz had to improvise, because there were no women’s restrooms at the site. She was the recipient of the Navy Award for Merit for Group Achievement, the NASA Public Service Group Achievement Award and the Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award. Dr. Prinz volunteered for the Navy Community Outreach Program and gave lectures about space research at schools in the Washington, D.C. area.
Mr. Brandon Gulish - Class of 2003
Mr. Gulish is a 2003 alumnus. He graduated with honors from Temple University, with a degree in Film and Media Arts. In a very short period of time, he has made a mark on the field of Reality TV. Mr. Gulish is a sought-after producer and director, and has traveled to more than 40 countries. Some of his credits include producer/director of Weird But True (National Geography), The Great Human Race (National Geography) and co-executive producer of Uncommon Grounds (Travel Channel) and Dangerous Grounds. He received the 2019 Daytime Emmy award for his work as the Director of Weird But True. Through his work, he encountered some of the world’s most struggling countries and became determined to use his skills as a director and producer to give back. In 2018, Mr. Gulish traveled to Uganda with a team of filmmakers to document the South Sudanese refugee crisis and to raise awareness of the lack of education and clean water in this area of the world. Following his trip, he and his team raised thousands of dollars to help provide clean water in the Ugandan refugee camps. Heregularly volunteers for his church and is instrumental in producing footage for an annual fundraiser to provide meals for 10,000 families throughout the Philadelphia area.
Ms. Marita Grabiak – Class of 1976
Ms. Marita Grabiak is a 1976 alumnus. She attended Carnegie Mellon University and graduated with honors from the University of California, Los Angeles, with a bachelor’s degree in Motion Picture/Television and a minor in Art History. She is a veteran television director and writer, with 40 credits in episode television. Ms. Grabiak’s TV movies – both thrillers and romantic comedies – are highly rated on the Lifetime and Hallmark channels. A versatile director, she has worked with acclaimed actors such as Emma Stone, Kathy Bates, George Clooney and Sally Fields. With thousands of hours of film production experience, she moved to television directing on the long-running NBC series “ER” in 2001. She has been a financial supporter of the Laughlin Memorial Library, as well as a loyal patron. Ms. Grabiak was especially fond of a rare 1917 Fairyland map that was displayed in the children’s room. Upon discovery that this map was no longer in good condition, she went to great lengths to provide a restored copy that is now returned to its rightful spot in the library.
Information about the Hall of Honor is available here.
Congratulations and best wishes to our new graduates!
The 180 members of the graduating Class of 2019 spent Tuesday, June 4 taking one last walk down memory lane. The soon-to-be graduates visited each of the three elementary schools, plus the Middle School, as part of their farewell send off. Graduates enjoyed seeing old teachers and classrooms, and talking with the younger students about how to achieve success as they continue their schooling.
The Class of 2019 Commencement ceremony will be held at 6 p.m. on Thursday, June 6, 2019 in the High School Gymnasium. Student speaker is Dalton Brandt, the 2019 Senior Class President.
Three new members of the Ambridge Hall of Honor also will be inducted during commencement. Learn more about this year's Hall of Honor inductees here.
Looking for a fun summer camp opportunity? A basketball camp for girls and boys in grades K-7 will be offered June 10-14 at the High School. Click here, or on the image above, to print the registration form.
On Thursday, May 23, students at State Street Elementary participated in their first ever Move-Up Day! During this time, rising first through fifth graders visited their future classrooms to meet the teachers and learn more about what to expect next school year. Students enjoyed following the next grade’s lunch schedule and eating at their new tables!
Congratulations to the boys volleyball team on winning their second straight Class 2A WPIAL Championship with a win against Seton-LaSalle in 4 sets!