Valley kids enjoy a
piece of the pie
Just before school ended in May, Angie McClure, a management assistant in Human Resources in Knoxville, sat at a table in the Christenberry Elementary School library stamping children’s books with the TVA logo. At the TVA-sponsored book fair, each child was allowed to pick out two books and take them home.
“They were so cute,” says McClure. “They were very excited and appreciative to take the books home with them for the summer. With smiles on their faces, you just felt good when you left.”
As a Partners In Education coordinator at Christenberry, McClure spoke at Career Day in March, sat on a judges panel and sang at the Talent Show, and helped coordinator Vyrone Cravanas, a manager in Diversity Development, award the TVA Student of the Year Award.
Their work at Christenberry represents a variety of projects employees take on to support PIE, a TVA program that assists schools in the Tennessee Valley to provide a high-quality education and prepare students for employment. Founded in 1982, the PIE program now includes 70 schools in Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi.
“We’ve gotten good feedback on these programs from students, parents and the community,” says Teresa Dillard, PIE program manager in Community Relations & Diversity. “Other coordinators are borrowing some of these and other good ideas.”
For instance, at Midway Elementary School in Kingston, Tenn., PIE coordinator Beth Jackson hosts an annual pizza lunch and plant tour for students who make the honor roll or have perfect attendance. “This year, we had 72 students participate,” Jackson says. “It is a big achievement for the students, and they really look forward to coming to the plant to see us at work. The pizza is a big incentive, too!”
Across the Valley, TVA employees participate in job shadowing with students or in fix-up days for playgrounds or school buildings. In the past, TVA has donated surplus computer equipment to schools where the greatest need exists.
As reported in the June Inside TVA, Chattanooga employees hosted a Lego League Robotics tournament for area elementary students. In the fundraising area, TVA Nuclear has set the standard with annual golf tournaments supporting the many PIE schools in their areas. Sequoyah and Watts Bar nuclear plants each raised more than $50,000 at their annual tournaments last month, and last year, Browns Ferry raised about $125,000.
“It’s driven by the enthusiasm of employees,” says Dillard. “Coordinators need to have the passion to work with the schools and an ability to organize events and initiatives.”
Anyone interested in starting a PIE program can learn how at www.tva.gov/community/pie.htm.