September 5, 2000
NANCY BLOOM is not one to let her circumstances get her down. And as a city school librarian, it might be tempting. She can't remember the last time she had money to buy books. Indeed, no shelf in her North Bend Elementary library is even half- full. She only has six computers wired for the Internet. And she's at the school just three days a week. But Ms. Bloom is one of those diamonds in the rough, sparkling in a system scrutinized last week by a Sun editorial for its utter disrepair.
August 31, 2000
ASK A GROUP of teen-agers what they want to do after high school, and, not surprisingly, some will say: live in a mansion, drive a Porsche. The surprise comes when you ask those kids what job's going to get them there, and they say ... McDonald's. What's needed here is a little Myth Moshing 101. But when parents and teachers try to break the real-world news, teens are like, "Whatever!" So the Maryland Business Roundtable for Education is giving kids a chance to hear the message from someone they're more likely to listen to. The group's Achievement Counts program puts young workers, ages 19 to 37 -- including teachers, firefighters, dot-com wizards and even a mayor -- into ninth-grade classrooms to talk about what really happens after graduation day. The volunteers lay out a few hard truths: how much it costs to keep a car, pay for an apartment, put food on the table and still have enough cash to catch a movie Friday night.
August 13, 2000
THE GLITTERY honors go to the big names, stars in the national firmament of politics: Marian Wright Edelman, the child welfare advocate; economist John Kenneth Galbraith; former sen- ator and presiden- tial candidate George P. McGovern; civil rights conscience Jesse Jackson; and social scientist Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who is also a retiring New York Senator. They all bowed recently in the White House to accept the Presidential Medal of Freedom last Wednesday. Deserved honors, all. But what of those Americans who help day in and day out?
July 3, 2000
CHEERS for Playground Program 2000, the first free camp sponsored by the city parks department for two decades -- and to staff members' initiative in getting the $340,000 grant to fund the fun. At Waverly Recreation Center earlier last week, the basement was buzzing with preschool and elementary children. They were finishing breakfast before heading to the harbor to see the tall ships. Teen and parent volunteers joined the kids at the tables, talking up the trip. Artwork adorned one wall, with the wise camp rules above them -- beginning with "I will keep my hands to myself."
June 4, 2000
Keyshawn Johnson seems intent on proving that money doesn't buy happiness. Johnson, who wanted the New York Jets to tear up the last two years of his contract, got the deal of a lifetime when he was traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who gave him an eight-year contract worth more than $50 million with a $13 million signing bonus. Johnson, though, still sounds like a player who misses New York. It was the kind of stage he liked, near the bright lights of Broadway. There aren't any bright lights, much less tabloid newspapers, in Tampa Bay, and Johnson might already miss the attention.
May 10, 2000
ALREADY a persuasive ambassador who's made a difference in her world, Edgewood's Nneka Willis has her eye on future service in the United Nations. The Joppatowne High School senior was recently named Youthof the Year by the Maryland Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs, a tribute to her achievements in and for the organization. She's soon off to Hampton University on a scholarship to study foreign relations. Responsibility and leadership came early in life to Nneka, who has organized community cleanup campaigns and led after-school tutoring programs at the Edgewood Boys & Girls Club.
February 14, 2000
FOR the last several months, men and women with excruciating pain in their knees have been calling Dr. Claude T. Moorman III with new-found resolve. "I've been putting this off for years," one of them said. "I see what you did for Mr. Schaefer. I want mine done now." At 78, Maryland Comptroller William Donald Schaefer submitted to an operation that millions may need but fear. "People fall anywhere on a spectrum from scared to death to `I've had it, my life isn't worth living. Do anything you need to do,'" Dr. Moorman said.
February 10, 2000
THE EXPRESSIVE hands of Yuri Temirkanov have already lifted the reputation and expectations for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in a remarkably brief time. Glowing reviews of his first con- irp7,l7 certs as its music director, in the New York Times, Washington Post and USA Today, have spread the word that his advent here is a national musical event. What this will do is whet the market's appetite for BSO tours and recordings to reach a wider audience beyond Maryland under Mr. Temirkanov's hand.
February 2, 2000
Nobody does profiles of performers and artists like PBS' "American Masters." Compared to this series, the History Channel's "Biography" portraits are cut-and-paste jobs. "Sidney Poitier: One Bright Light," which airs tonight on public television, isn't in a league with the great "American Masters" profiles like last year's "Leonard Bernstein: Reaching for the Note." But it is close enough that it is well worth going out of your way to see. No matter how much you know about Poitier, I guarantee you will wind up knowing more and seeing him in new ways.
December 25, 1999
THEY COME BACK as they promised themselves they would -- to hear the language of their parents and grandparents.They study at the Father Oreste Pandola School, a growing Italian cultural center located in the old St. Leo's School on Stiles Street around the corner from the church of the same name in Little Italy.Christmas decorations were in place recently for a fall semester graduation ceremony in the school's basement, once its auditorium and basketball court. The commencement speaker was Francesco Luigi Legaluppi, the Italian consul in Baltimore.