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Students Raise Thousands to Grant Wishes for Terminally Ill Kids

NSU's University School students collected and sold toys, books and music to raise more than $20,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation in 2012.

FT. LAUDERDALE-DAVIE, Fla. — It’s the simplest acts of kindness that make the biggest impact.

NSU’s University School students collected and sold toys, books and music to raise more than $20,000 last year for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

This year, they are back on the task.

For several weeks, more than 100 fourth grade students have collected a variety of slightly used and new items including stuff animals, novelties, toys and knickknacks from other University School students. The donations were so generous that the storage room is bursting at the seams.

On April 15, the collected items will be part of the annual weeklong lunchtime sale inside the school’s cafeteria — known as the Make-A-Wish Lunch Market —where the fourth graders will sell the items to other University School students. When the sale finishes on April 18, the money will be donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

The project, entirely managed by the fourth graders, with the advisory help of teachers and parents, has contributed tens of thousands of dollars to the Make-A-Wish Foundation throughout the past 20 years. Last year, the students’ efforts helped grant wishes for four Make-A-Wish children.

“This project not only reinforces the character education we teach our students every day, but it also incorporates a significant educational component,” said Sheila Szikman, a fourth-grade teacher at the University School who helped organize the fundraising drive. “Students learn real life math and business skills including counting money, giving change, and computing sales, expenses and profits.”

Because of the success of the University School’s fundraising efforts, Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida presented Szikman with the 2012 Sharon Novak Lifelong Ambassador Award.

“Sometimes ‘thank you’ is just not enough,” wrote Norman Wedderburn, President & CEO of Make-A-Wish of Southern Florida in a letter to Szikman. “Your support is truly remarkable and it is time that we recognize your dedication.”

The Make-A-Wish Foundation grants the wishes to children between the ages of 2 and 18 with life-threatening medial conditions. The concept of “granting wishes” was born in 1980, when a group of individuals helped a young boy fulfill his dream of becoming a police officer. Now, with 69 chapters in the US, the Foundation is the largest wish-granting charity in the world. For more information on Make-A-Wish, please visit www.sfla.wish.org.

For more information about NSU’s University School  Make-A-Wish Lunch Market, please contact Stacey Gonzalez at 954-262-4452.

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NSU’s University School: Established in 1971, University School of NSU is a leading private school with grades pre-K through 12 in Davie, Florida. The 40-acre campus is located on the campus of Nova Southeastern University at 3301 College Avenue with the Lower, Middle and Upper Schools housed in their own buildings. The University School of NSU is an independent college preparatory school that provides a challenging and personalized education within a supportive environment for students of average to gifted abilities. Our students are prepared for productive lives and leadership roles through a program that focuses on academic excellence, extracurricular participation and service to others. For more information about the University School of NSU visit us on the web at www.uschool.nova.edu.

About Nova Southeastern University: Situated on 300 beautiful acres in Davie, Florida, Nova Southeastern University is a dynamic fully accredited research institution dedicated to providing high-quality educational programs at all levels.  NSU is the eighth largest not-for-profit independent institution nationally with more than 28,000 students. NSU awards associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, specialist, doctoral and first-professional degrees in a wide range of fields. Classified as a research university with “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, NSU is one of only 37 universities nationwide to also be awarded Carnegie’s Community Engagement Classification.  www.nova.edu

Media contact:

Stacey Gonzalez
University School of NSU
(954) 262-4452
staceyg@nova.edu

Ken Ma
NSU Office of Public Affairs
954-262-5408 work
954-621-7961 cell
Ken.Ma@nova.edu


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