A big congratulations to the Brazoria County Petrochemical Council’s signing day recipients.

At the event, 12 high school seniors, out of an initial 50 interviewed, accepted contracts for full-time jobs, industry training and tuition reimbursement.

While the right path for some students is to go to college and get a degree, some others prefer to go right to work and that Wood Group was willing to help guide these students down that path is admirable.

In the Brazosport area, there is what some might call a pipeline from the schools to the plants and for those students who prefer to get a good job for a big company right out of school, this is the place to do it. Not to mention, they’re offered tuition assistance if they want to stay in school.

Rich Wells, Dow vice president of Gulf Coast operations, said it best when he posed the question of who adds more to society, a barista with an art history degree or an electrician at Dow.

“People would probably say the barista,” Wells said. “But the barista at Starbucks, at some point that electrician is going to have to go and disconnect their electricity because they can’t afford to pay their bill.”

The students at signing day signed contracts through the Wood Group for Phillips 66, MEGlobal and Dow Chemical Co. We hope for the best for them on the start of their plant path and offer a round of applause to everyone involved in this and similar programs in the county.


Dream High Society awards empower girls

The Dream High Society’s mission is to educate, inform and inspire girls age 8 to 18 and through college to make their dreams come true, according to the nonprofit’s Facebook page.

The nonprofit’s awards ceremony Saturday was the perfect snapshot of putting those words to action.

Keshia Champs, a mother of five, was the keynote speaker who without a doubt inspired a room full of girls with her story of overcoming homelessness to graduate with a law degree just last year.

Eleven women and girls were honored with recognition for their community involvement, including Honorary Police Officer Abigail Arias who was delighted to receive the We Can Do It Youth Award.

Showing gratitude for those in the community who help others should be the norm. To every nonprofit and volunteer out there who helps people, whether it be a matter of drug addiction, homelessness, medical assistance, etc., you should be recognized for your selfless acts.

Therefore, the Dream High awards are a reflection of good community engagement and giving credit where its due.


All children deserve same lunch options

One thing students around the country should be able to count on is a healthy, nutritious lunch from the school cafeteria, regardless of their financial situation.

Food is a right to which everyone is entitled and children especially should not ever have to go hungry.

Schools in New Hampshire and Rhode Island have been in the news lately for controversial decisions regarding their lunch programs.

A New Hampshire school cafeteria worker was fired for providing a student unable to pay for lunch a meal. After the backlash, the company quickly offered the employee her job back and to examine the policies and procedures that led to her firing.

The student who was provided the meal brought money to pay for it the next day.

A school district in Rhode Island announced it would be providing students who can’t pay for a meal cold sunflower butter and jelly sandwiches. That, too, didn’t last long. The backlash from community, including the mayor, led district officials to change their minds and instead offer students their choice of meals even if they can’t pay.

It’s sad money is higher on education officials’ minds than whether their students have adequate meals when under their roofs. A glimmer of hope, however, comes from the public backlash that quickly led to a reversal of these decisions.

As long as the majority has their priorities in order, there’s hope for the future of our students.

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