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[Pacific Lutheran Scene]


[photo] Pam Nelson, Shannon Rollo and fifth-grader Ashley Coe
Pam Nelson (left), and Shannon Rollo (right) proudly share Ashley Coe’s moment of graduation from her fifth-grade studies with the HOSTS program
PLU Connection benefits Puyallup teachers

Elementary school teacher/counselor Pam Nelson '78, '83, '90 attests to the benefits of her connection with PLU.

Two years ago she needed remedial reading tutors for about 80 children at the Wildwood School in Puyallup, Wash. With the assistance of eight PLU students, including Erika Hedeen '99, Shannon Rollo '00, and the HOSTS program (Helping One Student To Succeed), Nelson reports major improvements in her students' reading abilities.

To continue the momentum, she's recruiting more PLU volunteers. "HOSTS volunteers are paired one-to-one with the K-6 remedial students," she says. Volunteers are trained in an easy-to-follow format. Each child receives 30 minutes of tutoring, Monday through Thursday. Mentors can serve for as little as half-an-hour to all day.

Former tutors have come from the School of Business, from social work, and the School of Education. Support also has come from a group of future teachers, including Kim Cunningham '01, whose own children have benefited from this program.

Cunningham's daughter, Corrina Mueller, who is a fifth-grade student, has given up her second period recess all year to mentor fellow students. Cunningham's son, Ian Mueller, is a student in the remedial reading program and "has grown in his proficiency," says his mother.

This program, Nelson continues, "is a great place to serve in stewardship. We are highly accountable to our community and see amazing, documentable results in our kids."

HOSTS is a national, remedial reading program, based in Vancouver, Wash. PLU students who are interested in the program may contact Nelson, during the school year, at 253-435-6702 or by email at pnelson@puyallup.k12.wa.us.

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