WT Student Speaker at National Conference
By Jayson Parker, MSDWT Parent
Our daughter, Tatum, a Freshman at NCHS, was honored to be one of four students (only student not in college) invited to speak at the 2015 International Baccalaureate (IB) Conference of the Americas in Chicago, this past July. She was invited to share with the crowd of 1900 educators from 37 countries how IB has influenced her life as a person, a student, and a philanthropist.
Tatum is a two-time cancer survivor who started the non-profit organization Tatum’s Bags of Fun to help brighten the days of Indiana pediatric cancer patients. Since 2008, she has delivered in excess of 2,100 Bags of Fun to Indiana’s bravest children.
In her address to the IB of the Americas, Tatum highlighted how the IB Early Years program was implemented into her education in 2nd grade at Spring Mill Elementary and how it has guided her growth as a person and a student. She specifically referenced the IB Learner Profiles: Caring, Risk Taker and Communicator. Tatum talked about her own experience fighting cancer and how lonely, bored and scared she was during those two years of treatments. Because of those experiences our family felt that she had an opportunity to make an impact on how other children experienced their fight with cancer (Caring). Therefore we took a Risk and started Tatum’s Bags of Fun to make a positive impact on the lives of children like Tatum who are fighting for their lives.
She finished her presentation by highlighting how Tatum’s Bags of Fun has given her the opportunity to speak (Communicator) to corporate partners, donors, school groups, fundraisers, radio and TV reporters, and many others to help grow our organization. Most importantly she has had the opportunity to speak to many pediatric cancer patients and inspire HOPE and STRENGTH. Her objective by sharing her story of success against cancer with these children is that it will inspire a new outlook and a belief that they too can win this fight.
MSDWT has been extremely accommodating and supportive of Tatum and her work with Tatum’s Bags of Fun, and we can’t thank them enough. Her IB education extends beyond books and tests, but to LIFE. Thank you for bringing IB to all MSDWT students.
Very PROUD MSDWT Parents,
Jayson & Kendra Parker
Tynan-7th Grade, Westlane MS
Truitt-3rd Grade, Spring Mill Elementary
Photo Caption: NCHS Freshman, Tatum Parker, speaks at the 2015 IB Conference of the Americas in Chicago