Local Students Write and Perform Play – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Local Students Write and Perform Play

Several students from Border City Multiage School worked with a William Smith student intern to create their own play.

December 6, 2002 Geneva, N.Y. – “I’m Going to Be Famous” was first written in book form by Tom Birdseye. But recently, a group of students from Border City Multiage School developed their own play based on the book (with copyright permission). Led by William Smith senior Renee Da Cruz, the students will perform their play on WEOS-FM 89.7, the Colleges’ radio station, and again at the school.

Da Cruz is working with the fourth- and fifth-grade students as part of the Colleges’ Geneva Collaborative Internship Program. Two mornings a week she meets with the young people before regular school hours in a voluntary Writing Enhancement Program. The students read the Birdseye story and decided to create their own version of the story about a young man who wants to be in the Guinness Book of Records.

“The kids understand the message in the story,” said Da Cruz. “They understand that it is about honesty—and about not gambling,” she chuckled.

Da Cruz had help with this project from mentors on campus, including her advisor English Professor Eric Patterson and education professors Pat Collins and Charlie Temple. (Collins is well known locally for his work in children’s theater, and Temple is himself an author of several children’s books.) Da Cruz also noted that she received help and encouragement from Border City School Principal Wendy Doyle.

Eight students, three girls and five boys, will tape the play in advance of its airing on the radio, said Da Cruz. The play will air at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 11, and will be performed that morning at 9:15 a.m. for students and parents at the school.

The Colleges’ Collaborative Internship Program (CIP) is a partnership between students, faculty and worksites. It is coordinated through the Career Development Center by the Internship Coordinator, and the projects encompass unique learning experiences while providing beneficial services to participating worksites. CIP students apply the knowledge they've gained in the classroom to work environments ranging from non-profit to governmental to for-profit businesses, becoming members of the workplace team and making significant contributions.

“The writing enrichment group created by Renee has provided our students with unique and challenging experiences in the world of writing and performing,” said Border City School Principal Wendy Doyle. “It has been a productive and rewarding semester for everyone involved.”

Doyle added, “I can’t say enough about the outstanding programs pairing students at Hobart and William Smith with the community. Border City Multiage School participates in as many of these “partnerships” as possible, including America Reads, student teaching, student tutors, HWS Orientation service projects, and, of course, the CIP.”

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