Cedar Grove HS Celebrates Red Ribbon Week with Motivational Speaker

Guest Speaker Gian Paul Gonzalez with Mr.Mangili and Mrs. DeFabiis Credits: Vincent Cardiello

TAPintVCG is happy to share the great work of the students from Mr. Cardiello's Television Production class. 

CEDAR GROVE, NJ - This week, students across the country celebrate Red Ribbon Week, a national campaign to fight drug abuse and bullying. In recognition of the week Cedar Grove students were gifted with an assembly hosted by Gian Paul Gonzalez. He spoke about the importance of going “all in,” with an incredible story to accompany his theme.

Mr. Gonzalez’s story fascinated and inspired students. The story begins when he was asked to speak in front of the Giants, despite having little experience in motivational speaking. The team wanted him to speak because they knew that he had worked with kids in a juvenile delinquent center. After he spoke to the team, they went on to win the Superbowl.

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After this, he gained fame and would travel around the world speaking to teams, schools, and companies. Mr. Gonzalez speaks about the importance of giving your all in everything you do, including practices, schoolwork, and jobs. At the end of every presentation Mr. Gonzalez gives, he has poker chips for everyone to take at the end and put their initial on it as a reminder to go “all in” everyday.

To learn more about the speaker and the presentation, we spoke to Mrs. DeFabiis, who scheduled the assembly. She said that she was very happy with how the assembly went, and she particularly enjoyed the way that he was able to connect with the students. When we asked her how they found him and why they asked him to speak, she said that he was found online, and they wanted him speak because they had him come in to speak a few years ago. She said that the students loved it so much last time that they simply had to invite him back.

Not only did the students enjoy the speech, but many even stayed after the assembly to continue to ask him questions, even though it would interfere with their lunch period. As whole, the speech was very interesting and enlightening. Mr. Gonzalez’s incredibly kind character combined with his intellect and fascinating story to create a wonderful speech for students to celebrate Red Ribbon Week.


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