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Tyra Banks offers words of encouragement to students

Bronx Times
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All it takes is a few words of inspiration from a well-known celebrity to spark motivation in high school students.

A model, an actress, an innovator, and businesswoman, Tyra Banks certainly has the ‘fame power’ to keep young students on their toes. The creator of America’s Next Top Model took time out of her busy schedule to visit students of the High School for Teaching and Professions on 2780 Reservoir Avenue on Wednesday, October 19.

Banks teamed up with Hot 97 and the Get Schooled Foundation to give students a surprise pep rally. The school is currently one of 90 across the country participating in the Get Schooled Attendance Challenge, which engages students, teachers and school communities in an effort to improve attendance rates.

The students of the High School for Teaching and Professions were able to raise their total attendance by four percent in only two weeks. Banks congratulated students and stressed how an education can be improved simply by showing up to school.

“Even when I was younger I was always such a big fan of school. I was always excited for the first day of school and I even sat in front,” said Banks, who is currently enrolled in the Harvard Business School seeking her master’s degree.

Banks, along with Hot 97’s K. Foxx from the Cipha Sounds & Rosenberg Show, spoke to students about the importance of keeping attendance up in high school. Banks also spoke about her new book, “Modelland,” a fictional story about four girls who are accepted into an exclusive modelling school in the world of Modelland.

Selected students were allowed to come on stage and ask Banks questions, with 16-year-old Chris Rodriguez providing students with some comedy after asking the star to marry him.

Banks provided each student with a free copy of her new book, but hoped that the biggest gift she gave to the young and aspiring students was important advice as they prepare for higher education.

“I feel that it’s very important to make a difference in a young student’s life, because it can serve as their inspiration to want more in their future,” Banks said.

The Get Schooled Foundation is a non-profit organization that uses the power of media and popular culture to motivate young people. Should the High School for Teaching and Professions win the attendance competition, they will receive several prizes such as college scholarships, school “makeover” opportunities, field trips, or events with celebrities.

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