August 7, 2013

The Bell Rings on Another School Year

By Angel MedFlight Contributor 

For this writer, it was the commercials, both TV and radio, that reminded me that school was about to start. "Back to School Sale" only meant major bummer to me. So yes, it's safe to say I did NOT enjoy going back to school. I would have much rather spent time watching baseball, traveling with my folks or just playing in the neighborhood. But with schools starting here in the Phoenix area, I've done a small sampling of employees here at Angel MedFlight Worldwide Air Ambulance and have found that unlike me, there are people who actually enjoyed getting back to the "Three R's." I also found that for the most part, parents are glad to get their youngsters back to school and out of the nest for nine months.

Sharon Mico is our Quality Assurance Manager at Angel MedFlight. Sharon says she always looked forward to getting back to school because she'd see friends she didn't get to see over the summer. Her son is now grown but as a parent she says she was always happy when the start of the fall semester came around.  School, she says, "remedied a couple of different problems that would grow over the long summer." Mico says that number one, "I wouldn't  hear 'I'm bored' for another nine months. Number two, being able to reinforce that 8:30 p.m. bedtime!"

Patti Leong works in our Claims Department and is the mother of three children, the oldest attends college but lives at home.  She's relieved to have them going back to school, because at home during summer vacation "they eat all day long." And Leong says less food consumed means "more money."  Leong graduated from El Cajon High School near San Diego and also enjoyed going back to school to see friends she missed during the summer months. When it comes to advice she can give other parents getting kids ready for "Back to School" she says, "Buy your stuff early, and not all at once. It's easier on the pocketbook."

Angel MedFlight Graphics Designer Cooper Bolton grew up in Waddell, Ariz., and went to elementary school near Luke Air Force Base. It's too far back for him to remember but his mom tells the story that Bolton was so excited to be going to first grade on an Air Force base that on the first day of school he wore military camouflage shirt and pants to school. Bolton likes to wear hats. Trouble is, his sixth grade teacher, Miss Ault, always took them because he wouldn't take them off. Somewhere in the West Valley there is a box of confiscated hats waiting for Cooper Bolton.

Nate Prince, in our Legal Department, grew up in Lanham, Md., and looked forward to going back to school so he could show off his new clothes and shoes. Prince says as a kid, he could see the front of the school from the front door of his house and it was obvious the start of school was coming soon because he could see the increased activity and number of cars on the school grounds. His first grade teacher, Miss Martin comes to mind. "She had a thing for turtles, " says Prince, adding that paper turtles were used as decorations all over the classroom.

Marketing Manager Rebeka Kanigan has two boys, ages 13 and 5. To her it's not so much being happy the kids are out of the house when the school semester starts, but getting them back into the structured lifestyle. "They thrive when there is structure and they are busy," says Kanigan. "I find summer here (in Scottsdale, Ariz.) is tough because they can't run outside all day" like she did growing up in Connecticut. "You can only swim so long and play video games so long," says Kanigan. Her youngest is starting kindergarten and she admits she has bittersweet feelings about sending him off to school.

Chief Administrative Officer Rebecca Van Pelt says she "loved the back to school shopping every year! The new clothes, new shoes, new supplies -- I couldn't wait until the first day of school so I could wear all of my new stuff at North Brookfield (Mass.) Elementary/Junior and Senior High School."

Van Pelt says she's both excited and nervous about the start of the new school year for her son, who is starting middle school. "That's a big deal," says Van Pelt.  She's glad he'll have more constructive efforts consuming his days, "but the new challenges that will come with this developmental stage have me on edge."

"Send your child off to school on a positive note," Van Pelt advises other parents. "Life is busy, life is stressful, and most of the time, kids don't want to go to school. But cherish the moment each day, starting the day  off in a positive way can have such a big effect on the rest of the day."

Angel MedFlight Worldwide Air Ambulance wishes you all a happy and safe school year.

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