Unfolding stories, true or not, told by a wide range of authors brought me great joy as a child and continue to inspire me on my journey through adulthood. Last year was my first time participating in Read Across America at two elementary schools in the Inland Empire. I thoroughly enjoyed engaging with the students, sharing the importance of reading and shamelessly plugging my alma maters, Southeastern Louisiana University and the University of Southern Mississippi.
Public education provided many benefits beyond the classroom and gave me extraordinary experiences, adventures and lifelong relationships. Among the many lessons I learned from public educational institutions, Franklinton High School taught me to have PRIDE, Personal Responsibility In Developing Excellence; Southeastern showed me that I was more than a number and USM ignited me to soar To The Top!