Archives for May 2013

Cane Ridge high student flexes young arm of the law

Originally published in the Tennessean. Written by Heidi Hall. 


Calvin Jenkins, who handled both sides of Cane Ridge truancy cases, plans to major in law at Lipscomb.
Calvin Jenkins, who handled both sides of Cane Ridge truancy cases, plans to major in law at Lipscomb. / Jae S. Lee / The Tennessean

Calvin Jenkins worked his legal magic on both sides of cases before the Cane Ridge Restorative Court this year — either defending freshmen against truancy charges or leading them down the path to a confession. It’s the program’s first year at Cane Ridge High School’s Academy of Law. Students get coaching fromTennessee Bar Association lawyers and a glimpse of a possible future career.

For Jenkins, a senior, his love of the law developed many years before the high school program, and it came from an unlikely source.

Give me an example of the cases that come before youth court at Cane Ridge.

A younger student would be charged with truancy, admit to the charges, and then come here and be interviewed by his defense lawyers. Those lawyers would come up with things the child is good at or what he likes to do, and then he would get to do that type of community service. Or he may have to do what the opposing side says to do, the prosecution.

Did you handle only truancy cases in the court this year?

That’s all the cases that we’ve had this year. They said we were going to get different ones later. Those might be for fighting in school or destruction of school property.

Which role do you prefer? Defense attorney or prosecutor?

I prefer the prosecution. There’s just something about getting the defendant up there, having them nervous, just having them choke on their words.

What interested you in joining the youth court program?

We actually did some mock trials in criminal justice class. I played one of the lawyers in that, and it turned out real well. It sparked my interest. It also looked good on my college resume.

Are you going to pursue the law?

I am actually going to major in law at Lipscomb University.

Why did you choose Lipscomb?

I visited the school a couple times because my brother used to go there. I just liked it. I’ve been around their basketball program a little and seen how they operate. I’m going to try and walk on.

It’s really close to home. I can’t be too far away from my mom.

What do you like about the law?

I like the many different job opportunities that somebody could get. There’s not just one field. There are a lot of things you can do in it. You can be a sports attorney, a divorce attorney, all different types of things.

Would you like to be a trial lawyer?

It’s very intriguing and exhilarating. The lawyers from the Tennessee Bar Association who attended the trials said I would make a good lawyer.

Does that mean you like to argue with your friends?

Oh yes. I’m just listening to what they’re saying, and then twisting up their words to get them to be quiet. It works every time.

How about with your family?

I have three brothers, two older, one younger. I live here in Antioch with my mom. I especially argue with my younger brother. We argue about everything.

Did you consider the law as a career before joining youth court?

I’ve actually been interested in becoming a lawyer since I was 5 or 6 years old from watching “Law & Order.” It’s not a typical thing that a young child would be watching, but it was interesting to me.

Have you lived in Nashville your whole life?

I’m originally from Chicago. First I moved to Houston, and then I moved here to Nashville around the summer before sixth grade.

Was that a big adjustment?

Yes, very. Being from Chicago, everything was just fast. Moving down South, it got slower, but Houston is still a big city. Things are still fast. Moving here, everything got very slow. There wasn’t as much to do.

And yet you’re still going to college here.

I don’t have a problem with being here, but it’s just not the same.


Diplomas, Tassels, and Next Steps

4 years

48 months

208 weeks

1,460 days

While high school may seem to last forever, time certainly has flown for the Class of 2013. This month, thousands of high school students throughout the district will complete their high school journey and receive their diploma as they walk across stage.


Whether the next step is college, the workforce, or a military career, one thing is for certain. The education the Class of 2013 has received through the Academies of Nashville has helped to prepare them for whatever the future may bring.


Congratulations Seniors! We can’t wait to see the positive impact you will have on Nashville!

The Secret is in the Sauce

Students in the Academy of Hospitality and Marketing at Glencliff High School have had an extremely successful year- and an especially eventful Spring semester. Jonathan Q. writes about his unique experiences this year thanks to his participation in the academies. 

photoProStart Competition

On March 9th, Shayla, Sydney, and I took part in the ProStart competition held at McGavock High School. We competed with other high schools from Tennessee. About two months prior to this event we practiced our strategy for how to face this challenge. With the help of Chef Scrivner and Loews Vanderbilt Hotel’s Chef Joe DeGuira, we had a game plan to pursue this competition with ease. When that day arrived, we drove to McGavock High, a pretty big school by the way, to check in. They informed us that we would be one of the last teams to compete, so it gave us plenty of time to scout out the competition. I have to admit that there were a couple of teams that I was afraid of because of the incredible dishes these teams created. When the time came, we knew we had to put our game faces on. We made a three course meal which consisted of a kale salad with toasted almonds, apricots and pecorino cheese; pan-seared chicken on top of quinoa with veggies all topped with a relajo sauce; and for dessert red velvet napoleon with fresh berries. All of this in 60 minutes and we finished with time left over!  Next was judging, and I was very nervous! The judges explained how they loved our three course meal. We were announced as the 2nd place winners in the entire state!


The Next Teen Chef Competition

Maneet Chuahan is doing a book tour through the US. In the major cities on her tour that have public high schools teaching the ProStart curriculum, she is holding the Cutting Edge Challenge—The Next Teen Chef Competition.  When she stopped in Nashville, she selected Glencliff High School to hold that competition. Chef Scrivner picked Shayla, Sydney, and I to compete again. We were now put in a different situation where once we were teammates, now we were competitors. One of the only rules was that we had to cook 3 identical entrées in 40 minutes that consisted of a protein, veggie, and a starch. The protein and starch I felt like I had “in the bag”, but the vegetable tripped me up! I usually don’t eat veggies, but through a small miracle I pulled it together. During our few practices we had, I felt horrible because time kept running out on me; I always went over 10 or 15 minutes.  This got me scared because we were now only one day before the competition. To make things worse I had an End of Course exam right before! With my nerves on edge, I used my music to calm me down and it worked.


The competition was here and right before they said go, I prayed to God to give me the strength and wisdom to be successful in this challenge. That Tuesday, the kitchen was hectic because of all the cameras and by-standers chit-chatting in the way all while I was in “game mode”. After 20 minutes, I must have gotten over all of these people in my way because I found myself in my own groove with a little dancing here and there. Another 10 minutes flew by and I found that I was on track to finish in perfect time, that is until I checked my pork and found that it was raw in the middle. I panicked because the clock only said 5 minutes left.  The only remedy that I could think of was to cut the pork into 9 medallions and lay them on the grill to cook faster. The clock hit zero and guess what…that day was the 1st time that I finished within the 40 minute time limit!  I prepared chipotle crusted pork tenderloin on a bed of basmati rice with tajadas (fried plantains) and stemmed vegetables topped with a relajo sauce that my mom makes at home. The judges were very tough and pointed out every mistake. When they finished judging the rest of the competitors, they tallied all the numbers and brought us back to name the winner. When they announced my name as the winner, I was speechless. I remained silent simply because I genuinely didn’t think I was going to win knowing that the other two chefs had created awesome dishes too. It was eventually stated that I had won because of my mother’s sauce!


This competition awarded me with a $6000 scholarship, a knife kit from Maneet Chauhan and a cookbook with two reservations for the Watermark Restaurant. This win makes it clear to me that I should be in this profession. I can’t wait to find out what the future holds for me.


Clinical Internship Changes Students Future Plans

Internships give students the opportunity to see the realities of a profession or industry and the connections between learning and the real world. Nam N., a student from Hillwood High School’s Academy of Health Sciences,  participated in an internship this semester with Centennial Hospital. In this post, Nam writes about his experience.



nam nguyenI enjoyed my experience and adventure as an intern at Centennial Hospital.  I would like to thank Mrs. Hunt for giving me this opportunity, and letting me have the taste of the real world and having a sense what it would feel like to be a professional in the medical field.  To think we were just students in a classroom to then become assistances to our medical professionals in the hospital.  I believe the clinical internship has transformed me into a new and improved student and a person well prepared for whatever comes his way.  The clinical internship made me know what I really want to do for my career path.  I changed my interest to nursing for when I head to college.  I now feel as if life has shown me such goodness, I want to give back to the community and do what is right.  I want to help the sick and needy.

My true desire is to mend the patients back to health, so that they may live the rest of their lives the way it should be.  I learned plenty of information while at the hospital.  I learned to take vital signs, have patient interactions, and help my nurses in any way possible such as ambulation, medication retrieval, and temperature taking.  The internship also taught me how to handle with stress.  In the hospital there are times when things get really hard, and patients start to die.  It cases like these, I learned to become empathetic and sympathetic of patient situations.  The hospital was most certainly a place where I can finally look at real world situation that many people cannot see in an everyday environment, but it has most certainly changed the way I see about the world as a whole.  I found my strengths while working as the senior intern.  I love the patients and would do anything to help them out.  My strengths were patient care and providing comfort and help to all the patients I had to deal with.

The hospital staff was so kind enough to allow me to observe in caution procedures and testings.  The staff also helped in teaching me how to use some of the equipment needed to assess the patients in vitals that are probable for possible recovery.  They have taught me how find medication, set up IVs, take temperatures, and clean off infection.  It was a great pleasure to get serious and suit up in sterile gowns and help out with patients with really bad infections like MRSA.  In all, my experience in the hospital was a great time of gathering education and a welcoming to the real world of the medical field.  The internship has really made me decide to become a nurse, because it struck my interest and makes me want to do what’s better for the world and for others.










Maplewood Celebrated on May Day

While May Day is often the first indication that spring has arrived, May 1 holds another meaning for the students and teachers at Maplewood High School.


On Wednesday, Maplewood was awarded the Beautification Award by the East Nashville Chamber of Commerce. This award is given to developments the beautify and improve the quality of life in Metro Davidson County. Since the beginning of the 2012-2013 school year, Maplewood High School’s Academy of Energy and Power and the Garden Club from the Academy of Sports Medicine and Wellness has worked endless hours to clean up and improve the school grounds. This work was further advanced by the community business partnership when Comcast spent the weekend at the high schools beautify the Maplewood Campus– inside and out.

Partnerships that work

Business and community partnerships are an essential factor in preparing students for life after high school. Oftentimes, these partnerships result in job shadowing or internship opportunities. However, the unique partnership between McGavock High School’s Academy of Health Science and Law and the Metro Nashville Police Department has resulted in some pretty astonishing student accomplishments. Read their story, originally published in the Metro Nashville Police Department newsletter, below. 


Screen Shot 2013-05-02 at 8.16.37 AM

Picture are Crime Scene Investigator Felicia Evans, Erin Chafatelli, Astrid Canales, Criminal Justice teacher Brad Tracy, and Ashleigh Loughrey

Crime Scene Investigator Felicia Evans volunteered last fall to mentor and coach the McGavock High School Crime Scene Team. Throughout the school year, Ms. Evans has been teaching students how to properly identify and process crime scene evidence. The McGavock team participated in the SkillsUSA-Tennessee Crime Scene Competition with six others schools from Tennessee. Although it was close, McGavock won the state competition- qualifying them for nationals!

Lights, Camera, Action!

Students from throughout Nashville spent the past few weeks tirelessly preparing and creating videos, recruiting community voters, and shining their shoes to walk the red carpet for the 2nd Annual Academy Video Awards, sponsored by MTSU.

2013-04-55D Academies of Nashville Video Awards

Academies of Nashville Director, Chaney Mosley, and MTSU’s Billy Pittard present the Best in Show check for $1,000, to the Academy of Health Science and Law at McGavock. Left to right are Mosley; Elise Taylor; Barclay Randall; Robert Bagwell; DeLaney Williams; and Pittard.

The awards show was held April 22 as a part of the Nashville Film Festival and more than 250 students, teachers, administrators, and community members attended to support the students in their hard work and efforts during the district-wide competition.


This is the second year MTSU has agreed to be the title sponsor of the show. MTSU students produced the awards show using the university’s state-of-the-art mobile production truck and allowed more than a dozen MNPS students the opportunity to shadow the 40-person crew during the event.

2013-04-55D Academies of Nashville Video Awards

Co-producer Kelsey Lebechuck, shown in the back row, and Director Colby Graham, shown in the foreground, were two of 40 undergraduates in MTSU’s Department of Electronic Media Communication who worked on the Academies of Nashville Video Awards Show.


Congratulations to all of our student winners! Watch these student produced videos here and learn why MNPS students believe the Academies of Nashville are a great place to learn.