Search Staff DirectoryBúsqueda en el Directorio del Personal

CCSD59.org

English|Español

CCSD59 Alum Brandon Fox Shares Life’s Lessons with Grove Students

October 3, 2017

“I remember Grove Jr High being a place of excitement & growth. All grade schools from the neighborhood consolidated, and from that I met some of my best friends still to this day. While attending Grove Jr. High, I joined the band and learned to play the snare drum. I also wrote my first song in 8th grade that I still remember to this day! There was a talent show at the end of the year that my friends and I participated in. Putting myself out there in front of the entire school is where I found my love in performing music.”
–  Performance Artist and Grove Alum Brandon Fox

Brandon Fox, former Grove Junior High School student and an up-and-coming musical artist and motivational speaker, came to visit his former school on Friday, September 29. His visit was a coordination between Grove’s SEL Interventionist Social Worker Michelle Acuña Amaro, the administration, and the Universal PBIS Team. Amaro said the type of local community ties Fox has made him a particularly relevant speaker to Grove’s students.

“Brandon grew up in the neighborhood and can speak to the same struggles that many of our students endure,” said Amaro. “We felt our students would really be able to relate to him, and hearing how he overcame those struggles would make an extra strong connection because he walked these streets and halls – it makes it more ‘real’ for them.”

Fox, born and raised in Elk Grove Village, said he feels he has a strong connection to his roots and wants to share his sense of civic responsibility with the kids. Fox recently visited Elk Grove High School, where he rehearsed with current choir students and performed with them during a pep rally.

The Elk Grove community has molded me into the person I am today; therefore, giving back in any way possible is something I will continue to do.

Brandon Fox

“I think it is extremely important to remember where you came from,” said Fox. “The Elk Grove community has molded me into the person I am today; therefore, giving back in any way possible is something I will continue to do. Speaking to schools across the country is one thing, but to be able to come back to the same school these students walk the halls in connects much deeper.”

In additional to the commonality of being a former Grove student himself, Fox connected with the students by honestly sharing his own life experiences, both good and bad. He spoke to the kids about the importance of finding your passions – in his junior high days, football and music – and using them as an outlet during difficult times.

He openly spoke about overcoming hardships and tragedies he has had personally, and how he learned to avoid using negative coping mechanisms in place of positive ones. He also stressed the importance of sharing thoughts and feelings with confidants, and shared his social media and email contact information with all the students. He told them, “If you need anything, if you need someone you can talk to, you CAN contact me – I WILL get back to you. I promise.” After watching him interact with the students and staff, you know he means it, too.

During his youth, Brandon enjoyed performing in talent shows and writing original music, and he spoke to how his personal experiences at Grove helped foster his musical talent. Fox is an experienced musician who toured across the US and performed at venues like Summer Fest and Lollapalooza with his former band, Makeshift Prodigy. He wisely used his talent to help bond with students so they will really hear his important message about overcoming hard times and being perseverant in goals. He showed students firsthand how creativity can be used as an effective way of communicating and impacting others. He encouraged the students to recognize their own talents and see the potential of their fellow classmates, too.

Brandon Fox speakingIn a particularly touching moment, Fox told the students to turn to the person next to them and say, “I believe in your goals. I believe in your dreams.” Watching the reactions of the students, some of whom became quite emotional when hearing these simple words, showed that Fox truly does understand how powerful they are.

Fox performed three original songs for the students, which was when the students really seemed to connect best with their alum. His final performance, off his upcoming album, “Glory”, had the students on their feet singing the refrain, “Nobody’s gonna bring me down” and high-fiving Fox as he went by.

Watching how well Fox was received by students certainly lends credence to Amaro’s thoughts that he could reach the students on a meaningful level. In a survey sent out after Fox’s presentation, students were asked what they heard Fox say or learned from the presentation. Over and over, the students responded the same things: to never give up on their dreams; to avoid drugs and alcohol as a means of coping during difficult times; to pursue their passions and believe in their own talents and skills; and to share their struggles with family and friends. One student wrote, “his life story, it reminded me of what’s going on right now in my own life.” Another responded, “Everyone goes through hard times, but something beautiful can come out of it.”

Amaro was not at all surprised about the connection between Fox and Grove’s current students. “We can teach them all about being resilient despite their struggles and tell them all about how important education is,” she said, “but to be able to see and hear it for themselves, from someone who has come through Grove and has lived the same experiences, makes an impact on a whole different level.”

Check out these tweets from the event:

 

  • MarkSchwarzThumb
    Mark Schwarz - 59 in :59Mark Schwarz 59 en :59

    Mark Schwarz - 59 in :59Mark Schwarz 59 en :59

    Affectionately (if somewhat inaccurately) called “Coach Schwa” by some of his students, most of us know our next “59 in :59” feature as Mark Schwarz,…Cariñosamente (si un poco incorrectamente) llamado "Entrenador Schwa" por algunos de sus alumnos, la mayoría de nosotros conocemos a nuestro próximo personaje de "59 en…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • RidgeHurricaneThumb
    CCSD59 Community Unifies To Help Hurricane VictimsLa comunidad CCSD59 se une para ayudar a las víctimas del huracán

    CCSD59 Community Unifies To Help Hurricane VictimsLa comunidad CCSD59 se une para ayudar a las víctimas del huracán

    Over the last couple months, it has been nearly impossible to turn on a TV, pick up the newspaper, or go online without hearing about…Durante los últimos meses, ha sido casi imposible encender un televisor, recoger el periódico, o ir en línea sin escuchar sobre los afectados por desastres…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • twe
    CCSD59 Celebrates Staff Excellence With ISBE AwardCCSD59 celebra la excelencia del personal con el premio ISBE

    CCSD59 Celebrates Staff Excellence With ISBE AwardCCSD59 celebra la excelencia del personal con el premio ISBE

    Every year, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) recognizes a variety of educational staff and community members for their outstanding contributions to Illinois schools.…Cada año, el Illinois State Board of Education (Junta de Educación del Estado de Illinois) (ISBE) reconoce a una variedad de personal educativo y miembros…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • Eclipse1thumb
    Rupley Students Get a Great View of Solar Eclipse at Harper CollegeLos estudiantes de Rupley obtienen una gran visión del eclipse solar en Harper College

    Rupley Students Get a Great View of Solar Eclipse at Harper CollegeLos estudiantes de Rupley obtienen una gran visión del eclipse solar en Harper College

    On August 21, 2017, CCSD59 students, along with many in North America, were able to see one of nature’s most amazing and unusual sights -…El 21 de agosto de 2017, los estudiantes del CCSD59, junto con muchos en América del Norte, pudieron ver uno de los espectáculos más sorprendentes…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • Summer Instrumental Music Camp Students Put on One Cool FinaleLos estudiantes de verano en el Campamento de Música Instrumental ponen un final genial

    Summer Instrumental Music Camp Students Put on One Cool FinaleLos estudiantes de verano en el Campamento de Música Instrumental ponen un final genial

    During these hot summer months, the well-loved sounds of summertime are everywhere: Children laughing on playgrounds; lifeguard whistles and water splashing; birds singing well into…Durante estos meses de verano calurosos, los sonidos bienamados del verano están por todas partes: Niños que ríen en juegos; Silbatos de salvavidas y salpicaduras…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • Congratulations Class of 2017Felicidades a la Clase de 2017

    Congratulations Class of 2017Felicidades a la Clase de 2017

    To our graduating classes of 2017, we wish you a happy, safe summer and a great beginning to your first year in high school in…Para nuestras clases de graduación de 2017, les deseamos un verano feliz, seguro y un gran comienzo en su primer año en la escuela secundaria…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • Christine Orozco - 59 in :59Christine Orozco - 59 en :59

    Christine Orozco - 59 in :59Christine Orozco - 59 en :59

    As the final installment of the 59 in :59 series for the 16-17 school year, meet Christine Orozco, Devonshire’s LRC director and 27-year employee of…Como la última entrega de los 59 en :59 series para el año escolar 16-17, conozca a Christine Orozco, la directora del LRC de Devonshire…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • Grove Junior High Students Performing in ‘Aladdin Jr’ See a Whole New WorldLos estudiantes de la Escuela Presecundaria Grove realizando en 'Aladdin Jr' ven un nuevo mundo entero

    Grove Junior High Students Performing in ‘Aladdin Jr’ See a Whole New WorldLos estudiantes de la Escuela Presecundaria Grove realizando en 'Aladdin Jr' ven un nuevo mundo entero

    The performers all stood on stage, smiling and waving to the audience. The student audience cheered and applauded, and as the stage curtain began to…Todos los actores estaban en el escenario, sonriendo y saludando al público. La audiencia de estudiantes aplaudieron, y cuando la cortina del escenario comenzó a cerrarse,…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • CCSD59 Alum Soars to Eagle Scout Status for Rupley Service Project Ex alumno de CCSD59 fue elevado a Eagle Scout para el proyecto de servicio Rupley

    CCSD59 Alum Soars to Eagle Scout Status for Rupley Service Project Ex alumno de CCSD59 fue elevado a Eagle Scout para el proyecto de servicio Rupley

    Almost everyone has at least heard of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), and many CCSD59 families either participate in BSA activities themselves, or know…Casi todo el mundo ha oído por lo menos de los Boy Scouts of America (BSA), y muchas familias CCSD59 o participan en las actividades…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • Veronica Rodriguez - 59 in :59Veronica Rodriguez - 59 en :59

    Veronica Rodriguez - 59 in :59Veronica Rodriguez - 59 en :59

    Veronica Rodriguez, fourth grade dual language teacher at Juliette Low, loved to read and go to school at a young age. As she grew up,…Veronica Rodríguez, maestra de cuarto grado en Juliette Low, le encantaba leer e ir a la escuela a una edad temprana. A medida que crecía,…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • CCSD59 Students Shine at 3rd Annual D59’s Got Talent ShowEstudiantes de CCSD59 brillan en el tercer D59 Got Talent Show anual

    CCSD59 Students Shine at 3rd Annual D59’s Got Talent ShowEstudiantes de CCSD59 brillan en el tercer D59 Got Talent Show anual

    A yo-yo artist. A ukulele player with an original piece of music. A karate demonstrator. A pianist. A gymnast. A ballerina. A cup-stacking magician. And…Un artista del yo-yo. Un jugador del ukulele con una pieza de música original. Un demostrador de karate. Un pianista. Una gimnasta. Una bailarina. Un…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo
  • Junior High Electives Provide Students Choice ClassesLas clases electivas ofrecen a los estudiantes de las presecundarias opciones para escoger

    Junior High Electives Provide Students Choice ClassesLas clases electivas ofrecen a los estudiantes de las presecundarias opciones para escoger

    Here at CCSD59, we strongly recognize the importance of allowing students to help facilitate their own learning. Students who are able to provide input and…Aquí en el CCSD59, reconocemos claramente la importancia de permitir a los estudiantes facilitar su propio aprendizaje. Los estudiantes que pueden ofrecer información sobre qué…

    Continue ReadingSiga Leyendo