March marks Women’s Appreciation Month! A Community School in Wynnefield celebrated with a women-led symposium. The event at Samuel Gompers on March 14th highlighted the significant work performed by several influential women who help drive our city forward. They were: 

  • Dr. Ala Stanford – state regional director, federal Department of Health & Human Services and co-founder, Black Doctor’s COVID-19 Consortium 
  • Christie Ileto – news anchor, 6ABC 
  • Denise Snow, program director for Students Diversity Program & Partnerships, Drexel University 
  • NazAarah Sabree – small business advocate, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania 
  • Quia Parks – owner/director, Thinking Out of the Box Learning Center 
  • Ali-Robinson Rogers – principal consultant, Rouse Consulting LLC 
  • Melissa Lawson – school counselor, Science Leadership Academy at Beeber  
  • Regina Young – state representative, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania 

The group of female 8th graders asked about past life experiences and shared future goals. Dr. Stanford, whose work has been recognized by the likes of Oprah Winfrey and CNN, told the girls,

“You have all these folks in this room who only want to see the best for you. … It doesn’t matter where you born, it doesn’t matter what obstacles are in your way. It’s possible,” she said of achieving their dreams. … I expect all of you to outdo all of us.”


Our Philadelphia Community Schools (CS) program delivers additional supports to 20 public schools. Through them, we promote wellness, safety, and opportunities to learn. We encourage our learners to keep pushing forward and remind them that they can reach their goals, no matter the situation. 

Hosting events with inspiring role models is an engaging way to empower students. Thanks to everyone who came out and made this event special. We look forward to hosting more!