The USC Annenberg School has organized and launched several meaningful high school programs meant to introduce lower-income and disadvantaged students within the greater Los Angeles area to the broad media landscape, an in-depth college experience, and professionals from diverse industries and backgrounds who communicate and convey their expertise and experiences. Earlier this year, 12 students and two teachers from the Merced Union High School District immersed themselves in a customized program of digital storytelling, video production and soft skills development. I had the wonderful opportunity to connect with and interview Oscar Perez, a recent Merced Union High graduate and former participant in a USC Annenberg high school program.
On October 5th, USC Annenberg hosted another special guest as part of its “Annenberg Intelligence” series. Dean Willow Bay, as the host, welcomed NBA All-Star point guard and National Basketball Players Association President, Chris Paul. Considering I’m a former collegiate basketball player who admires Paul’s basketball genius and sought to once emulate him, I was star-struck at the outset of the discussion. Nevertheless, what made the conversation, and its encompassing topics, so marvelous went much deeper than basketball and athletic competition. During the conversation, Paul repeatedly stressed and underlined the significant role particular soft skills have played throughout his various, on and off the court, endeavors which have allowed him to thrive. Paul drew our attention to adaptability and effective communication which he identified as key elements for successfully persevering through a year with many adversities. No choice but to adapt In the midst of this horrific and dreadful virus, entire livelihoods have shifted, and everyone has had to adapt. For Paul, his resiliency and discipline allowed him to adapt and thrive in untreaded waters. Considering the countless challenges and obstacles Paul had to shoulder and overcome, one can only applaud his perseverance. For Paul, adaptability to a “new normal” […]
This virus or, as I like to call it, the stubborn beast known as Covid-19 has obviously destroyed and completely altered livelihoods for individuals across the globe. It has been especially arduous for those with young children. Parents have had to be teachers, cooks, housekeepers, psychologists, and overall multifaceted individuals throughout this horrific pandemic. Not to mention, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, America saw a staggering and frightening 14.2% unemployment rate in April. According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, “How Many U.S. Workers Have Lost Jobs During Coronavirus Pandemic? There Are Several Ways to Count”, there is some data suggesting upwards of 40 million jobs were lost in the midst of this pandemic. Whether parents are employed and have the responsibility of remaining at work while also executing every other task, or whether they’re unemployed and have the compounded anxiety of lost wages, the overarching takeaway is that things are hard right now. We all may lie in the same seastorm, but everyone has different boats and distinct modes of security. One of the overwhelming predicaments for parents and children has been the transition to online learning. School sessions will obviously not be halted, […]