Wednesday, June 29, 2011

AC Transit Honors Positive Graduates in the East Bay

On Saturday June 25, 2011, family, friends and loved ones gathered together at the AC Transit Board Room in Oakland California. They were all attendants at the 17th Annual Billy J. Givens Scholarship Awards Ceremony

AC Transit Scholarship team with 2011 Recipients
Billy J. Givens was a beloved AC Transit driver who was dreadfully killed while operating his bus back in July of 1988. A supporter of young people, Givens continuously encouraged youth to remain in school, refrain from trouble, stay focused and achieve their goals. He was an advocate for the youth of today, a group of fearless, zealous, creative and beautifully unique beings who have all ability to make a difference. 

To honor his memory and to be an encouraging force behind young people, a group of individuals including fellow AC Transit workers, family, friends and an organization called Reach Out and Touch a Youth  Project gathered together and created the Billy J. Givens Scholarship. This scholarship started in the early 90's and just celebrated it's 17th year. Graduating high school seniors who are on their way towards a higher education at a four year university are honored with the scholarship award of $1000. 

The great thing about this scholarship is that it is offered to students that live in AC Transits surrounding areas. Many of these areas are low income and college is somewhat unattainable in some households where parents do not have enough income. By offering a means to help aid students in their journey towards their futures, the Billy J. Givens scholarship is helping to improve the young community. 

This year 12 high school graduates were honored with the award, all representing schools around the East Bay. Ashaki Scott (Envision High School), Kayalyne Pearson (John F, Kennedy High), Keir Abrams (Berkeley High School), Daniel Mastin (Skyline High School), Nicole Walker (Middle College High School), Bryanna Bradford (Bay Tech High School), Lizbeth Moreno (Richmond High School), Khanhly Nguyen (James Logan High School), Sy Stokes (Albany High School), Robert Lopez (Middle College High School), Breanna Briggs (Oakland Technical High School) and Samatha Walker (Pinole Valley High School). 
Christen Ayers, CBS 5 Reporter with scholarship winners

Along with the students, Christen Ayers served as the mistress of ceremony. Christen is a reporter for CBS 5. The keynote speaker for the ceremony was David Earl Spencer. Mr. Spencer is a financial advisor for Merrill Lynch and gave an excellent speech. 

Scholarship recipient Kayalyne Pearson
It was great to see these young people, professional figures and schools represented in a more positive light, especially at a time where negativity seems to have a great impact throughout society and all social media. 

Positive Images 2011 Senior Kayalyne Pearson
 Graduation Photo of Positive Images 2011 Senior, Kayalyne Pearson

It was a wonderful surprise to see one of our Positive Images seniors among the honorees. We are proud of Ms. Kayalyne Pearson!!! Keep displaying positive actions, attitudes and getting positive awards Kayalyne and the rest of the 2011 recipients of the Billy J. Givens Scholarship.

Special thanks to Positive Images Photography client, Cynthia Dorsey for inviting us to witness this positive event for Bay Area youth.  Cynthia's passion and dedication to this special project was very evident in her presentation. 

Submitted By: LaStarr Moore
LaStarr Moore works as a Social Media Consultant at Positive Images Photography. 
Positive Images creates the most unique graduation portraits in the San Francisco/Bay Area.
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