In my office, many resumes come across my desk. I’d like to read one recent resume to you. Candidate for Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer Information Systems at DeVry Technical Institute; Overall G.PA. 3.9 out of 4.0; Dean’s List every trimester; President’s List; President of Data Processing Management Association; A.A.S. Degree in Computer Programming, Bramson ORT Technical Institute; Awarded the Howard J. Friedman Scholarship Award for Achievement; Keynote speaker at the national ORT Convention; Appeared as representative of 200,000 students, on live world-wide ORT television presentation; Vice President of Student Council.
It certainly is an impressive resume. What the resume doesn’t say is that the young adult whom the resume describes is learning disabled. What it fails to mention is that for the first seven years of this young man’s school career, he was lost in a regular classroom. He came home frustrated with his inability to keep up with his classmates, and spent hours on homework that should have taken only a few minutes.
Also missing is the fact that the young man is an Orthodox Jew who attends a weekly shiur, who is proud to wear a kippah, and is a source of pride for our people.
Needless to say, also missing from the resume is the fact that his early days in yeshiva produced additional frustration because of the dual curriculum that he was expected to master.
Can anyone uses who that young man is ? The difference between the dismal failure of his early school days, and the glorious successes of his current school career was P’TACH. P’TACH enabled a potential failure to turn his educational life around so that his resume could become the source of pride that it is today.P’TACH taught him the practical organizational skills, the coping methods, and the techniques for compensating for his weaknesses. Steven was prepared to move on to concentrating on his strengths.Taube and I remember the first P’TACH dinner we attended many years ago, when Steven was a young boy, and P’TACH was a young and fledgling organization. We still remember the tears we shed. We still remember the ache and fear that we felt as we saw the video and heard the young men and women students of P’TACH speak. We still remember the silent prayers we made that our child could gain the confidence and ability to succeed.
We have sat in this audience, year after year, always crying, knowing the struggles not only of our child, but of P’TACH itself… Knowing how tenuous the survival of this essential organization remains. Knowing that every dollar received is so desperately needed. Knowing that children are still being turned away because of the lack of programs, funds, and space. All of you who support this noble organization of dedicated professionals must know that your hard work and hard earned dollars do make a difference.
P’TACH has honored Taube and me by bestowing this Founders Award upon us. But it is not we who deserve to be honored. It is the teachers, the administrators, the support staff, volunteers, and most of all, the courageous and valiant students who are to be honored. Thank you P’TACH, for making the difference in our children’s lives. But most of all, thank you for making a difference in Steven’s life. We will be forever grateful.