October 9, 2004: Headlines: COS - Burkina Faso: The Mining Journal: Students assist Peace Corps effort in Burkina Faso

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Burkina Faso: Peace Corps Burkina Faso : The Peace Corps in Burkina Faso: October 9, 2004: Headlines: COS - Burkina Faso: The Mining Journal: Students assist Peace Corps effort in Burkina Faso

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Students assist Peace Corps effort in Burkina Faso

Students assist Peace Corps effort in Burkina Faso

Students assist Peace Corps effort in Burkina Faso

IHS students assist Peace Corps effort

By JACQUELINE PERRY, Journal Ishpeming Bureau

ISHPEMING - Twenty more students are attending school in West Africa this year thanks to a group of Ishpeming High School students and alumni.
The students and alumni sent donations after reading a Mining Journal story in April concerning Phillip Barnes, a 1998 IHS graduate who joined the Peace Corps in 2003 after receiving a master's degree in civil engineering from the University of Michigan.

As a Peace Corps volunteer, Barnes teaches math in the French language to more than 250 sixth through eighth grade students in the village of Kirsi, located in Burkina Faso, a destitute landlocked West Africa country.

The article also featured the Ishpeming High School National Honor Society and the 2004 IHS Senior Class, which raised $500 for Barnes in appreciation of his commitment to service. Barnes at that time planned to use the money to establish a tuition scholarship fund for children within the village who could not afford to attend school.

African students pay $25 annually to attend school, Jack Barnes, Phillip's father, explained in the April article.

"However, it's common for African families to have several children and most of these families can only afford to send one or two of their children to school," Jack Barnes had said.

In a recent letter to IHS teacher Tim Clancy, Barnes further explained how he is using the money.

"As I said, I decided to use the money to pay for the schooling of 20 students," said Barnes in the Sept. 13 letter. "This includes tuition, books, ID card, library fees, and a fee to the APE, similar to our PTA."

Barnes said he wanted to help as many females attend school as possible.

"I intended to give the scholarships only to girls because women in Burkina Faso are not on a level playing field with men," he said. "Fourteen female students were able to get passing grades, so they all received money as did the next six highest boys. Getting a passing grade is very difficult here and, unfortunately, less than 20 girls were able to pass."

Barnes also thanked Clancy and the IHS students for their efforts.

"I thank you and my students thank you for your generosity and thankfulness," he said.

Clancy said he was happy to receive an update from Barnes.

"We're all pleased with how Phillip decided to use the money. It further proves the high standards he is setting for Ishpeming High School students," Clancy said. "We're just happy we were able to help him out."

When this story was posted in November 2004, this was on the front page of PCOL:

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Story Source: The Mining Journal

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Burkina Faso



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