The Youngstown Yacht club was the setting Thursday, Aug. 15, for “Creating Pathways to the Future,” the signature event for Lewiston-Porter’s Academy of International Business and Finance. AIBF advisory board members organized the fundraiser.
Sponsors of the event comprised a number of local area businesses and community organizations, elected officials, Lew-Port alumni and former graduates of the Academy and their families.
Sponsors and attendees were treated to a buffet of salads, fresh fruit, and meats from the grill, dessert, and a ticket for a chance to win one of four door prizes. Tickets for basket auction and 50/50 raffle were also available for purchase. Attendees dined on the outdoor patio with the picturesque view of the mouth of the Niagara River as their backdrop. Sponsors were treated to a sail down the mighty Niagara, courtesy of local skippers.
Upon their return, Commodore Shane Vanstrom welcomed attendees to the annual event. Lewiston-Porter Superintendent Paul Casseri extolled the program’s merits and introduced new director JoAnn Allender to the visiting guests.
Allender is a 1986 graduate of Lewiston-Porter. She obtained her BA from the University of Rochester in 1990 and a masters in secondary education from Niagara University in 2005. For the past 26 years she has worked in the field of international trade as a licensed customs broker.
Allender spoke of her plans to use this experience to broaden the current curriculum offered to students, and network with local business professionals so they become more involved with the academy.
“I look forward to working with all of you and combining our skills and talents to maximize the potential of the academy and the experience that we can offer to the students of Lewiston-Porter,” Allender said.
Academy senior JJ Shanks spoke on the many benefits the academy has provided him with, and shared some of the opportunities the program has afforded him.
All donations received from the sponsors will be used toward program activities, including funding to secure 120-hour compensated internships to provide valuable, real-world work experience to students.
Developed in 2014, the Academy of International Business and Finance is a unique school-within-a-school approach to education at Lewiston-Porter High School. It is designed to prepare students for their future academic and career success. Lew-Port’s AIBF is accredited by NAF (formerly the National Academy Foundation), which is a network of education, business and community leaders who work together to ensure high school students are “future ready,” whether that future be college or career.
Next year’s fundraiser will take place Thursday, Aug. 13, at the YYC.
A celebrity bartending event will be held this fall, on Thursday, Oct. 24, at the Ontario House (Stone Jug) in Youngstown.
For more information about the academy, including student information or sponsorship opportunities, contact Allender at [email protected] or 716-525-3358.