LODI, NJ - Lodi High School was awarded $5k for its new Technology Lab at a ceremony on Wednesday morning. The donation came about as a collaborative effort between a local business, the borough's Chamber of Commerce, and school district.
Great Clips, Inc. donated $5,000 to Lodi High School as part of the company’s nationwide Back-to-School campaign. It also donated folders, pencils, and bookmarks. The school donation will help augment the new Engineering/Construction Technology Lab, offering the students multiple opportunities and resources to prepare them to pursue advanced degrees in the engineering field as well as the hands-on skills to pursue careers in the construction industry. The funds will help supplement the purchase of electronic hardware, tools and equipment.
Nancy Berkow, a salon owner with two Lodi locations, has always found ways to give back to the town.
"The people of Lodi and the borough have been very good to us," said Berkow. "We have always strived to give back to the community."
When she learned about the nationwide program, she "turned to our best resource, James Tassillo, to help point us in the right direction." Tassillo is the vice president of the Lodi Chamber of Commerce. The chamber is not only about "business helping business, but business helping community," noted Berkow. Tassillo made the introductions to the district's administrators.
“With the addition of our new Engineering/Construction Lab at Lodi High School, we plan on offering our students multiple opportunities and resources to prepare them to pursue careers in the engineering and construction industries,” said Frank D’Amico, principal of Lodi High School. “I would like to thank the folks at Great Clips for acknowledging the importance of this program and for their generous donation of $5,000.”
The new Technology Lab is still under construction. According to Thao Hansen, supervisor of the science department at Lodi High School, construction began over the summer and is slated to be finished in early December. The three-room lab will host construction tools like routers, saws and drills, and a computer lab, including an AutoCAD system. The lab will be utilized by both students and school clubs like rocketry, robotics, and the green tech team. Hansen said there will also be collaborative work with the drama club in designing and constructing sets and props.
"Since the inception of the Lodi Chamber of Commerce back in 2018, our mindset was to be a community oriented chamber," said Tassillo. "That meant having the businesses in our area help volunteer organizations, schools and participate in town wide events. To date we have seen such a positive response from our members. Great Clips owner Nancy Berkow is one great example of how our members can work together with the community to make Lodi a greater place to live."
Editor's note: The article was revised to include the proper title of James Tassillo as vice president of the Lodi Chamber of Commerce.
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