Sunday, December 8, 2019

Community That Cares...

During this holiday season, it’s easy for people to get swept up in the hustle and bustle of constant events, running from place to place, in preparation of the holidays. Without blinking, you can feel like you are living in a tornado and the whole season can be over before you know it. This kind of atmosphere can make it difficult to slow down enough to see all of the amazing things that are happening around us. During this season, and every holiday season, we are all fortunate enough to be in a community that cares deeply about helping each other. There are more programs and events that occur in Rome each year to help those that may be in need, than any other place I have witnessed in my career. From our civic groups, to places of worship, to our teacher’s union, and many more, Rome has no shortage of caring organizations and people that do what they can to help others. Yes the decorations, lights, music, and events can help bring some happiness and spirit to the season, but, there is no sense of joy like seeing another person smile in gratitude as they are helped in a time of need. Our society tends to lean toward a “what’s in it for me” mentality, as people become more and more busy. While the concept of helping others and supporting those in need does happen year round, it’s more prevalent during the holiday season. No matter where you turn in life, whether it’s people watching at the mall, the people you’re sitting near at a sporting event, or the patrons in line with you at the store; no one is living the perfect life to the point where a little kind gesture wouldn’t brighten there day. It can be as simple as striking up conversation when someone looks depressed. Whatever it is, it can be done. So this holiday season, as we continue to grow our community and help each other, take a moment to care about those who are around you, if even you may not know their story or them. The world will always be a better place with a little more kindness!!

Breakfast with Santa

On Sunday, December 15th, the RFA Travel Club will be hosting a Breakfast with Santa fundraiser from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. in the RFA cafeteria. Tickets for the event are $6.00 and can be purchased at the door. Children ages 5 and under eat free and all proceeds benefit the Travel Club and their upcoming trip this Spring. There will also be a poinsettia sale, basket raffle, arts and crafts, and more! We look forward to seeing you for a great pancake breakfast on December 15th!

Mentoring Program

The Rome City School District will once again be participating in the New York Mentors program, in conjunction with the Rome Area Chamber of Commerce. Having become a State-wide example and a leader of the program, our Rome schools are once again operating the program in all seven elementary schools for 2019-2020. Students who will be mentored will be either fourth, fifth, or sixth grade children and anyone 18 years or older willing to devote one hour a week is eligible, (including working persons, college students, and retired senior citizens) to be a mentor. Sessions will occur once a week beginning in January, ending in May before Memorial Day. For more information or to sign up to be a mentor, click HERE, or contact Rome Area Chamber of Commerce President William Guglielmo at 315-337-1700 or New York State Mentoring Advisory Council Member Frank DiBerardino at 315-337-4721. 

RFA Class Holiday Window Competition 

Once again, in conjunction with our local JCP, who is a tremendous supporter of our local education, families, and students; each of the individual RFA cohorts has decorated a holiday window display at the local JCP as a fundraising event. The window paintings will be on display throughout the holiday season and you can vote for your favorite window in the store. The winning class will receive a $200 donation from JCP. Thank you to JCP for sponsoring such a fun event which brings the school and community together during the holiday season.  Students from each class volunteered their time and creative ability to design the best windows for Rome, so make sure to get out and vote for your favorite!

CNY STEM Scholarships

SRC, Inc., Loretto, TTM Technologies, King + King Architects, and INFICON, in partnership with the CNY STEM Hub, are pleased to announce the 2020 CNY STEM Scholarship Program. This scholarship program, now in its 8th year, is open to graduating high school seniors who will be majoring in Electrical or Mechanical Engineering, Computer Science, Computer or Software Engineering, Nursing (including PA or NP programs), or Architecture, starting in the Fall, 2020. Students in the following counties may apply: Cayuga, Cortland, Madison, Oneida, Onondaga, Oswego, and Tompkins. This year’s scholarship program will provide financial support and at least one paid summer internship at the participating companies, pending business conditions. Last year’s scholarship winners were from Cicero-North Syracuse, East Syracuse-Minoa, Fayetteville-Manlius, Hannibal, ITC @ Syracuse Central, New Hartford, Nottingham and Westhill High Schools. There is no financial eligibility requirement. Students attending a college or university in New York State majoring in the select STEM areas will be given preference during the selection process. Finalists will be chosen based on academic merit, extracurricular activities, honors/awards, and an essay related to STEM. Recipients will be determined by an in-person interview. The online application and additional information can be found on the CNY STEM Hub website at The application deadline is MARCH 1, 2020. Selections will be made in April and all applicants will be notified by May 1, 2020. If you have any additional questions related to the program, send inquiries to