On October 6, 2015 members of Inspire Nyack’s Board of Directors visited Nyack High School to tour the new arts production computer lab that the foundation funded with a donation of $80,000. Mr. Matthew Lucero, Music Department Chair, and his students gave board members a demonstration of what the students are learning in the new Intro to Music Technology class, which explores the principles of audio and sound recording. The goal of the class is to go beyond the world of traditional music education and strict performance, to a world of career opportunities that exist in the 21st-century job market: film scoring, commercial advertising, media production, acoustic engineering, TV/radio production, e-media/web production, electronic systems design, music composing, and arranging.
In recognition of Inspire Nyack’s support, later that evening the Board of Education formally dedicated the computer lab in Room 304 at Nyack High School as the Inspire Nyack Lab.
Superintendent of Nyack Schools, Dr. James Montesano commented, “The Foundation to Inspire Excellence in the Nyack Schools has played a major role to enhance the innovative, technology-based educational opportunities for our students that might otherwise remain beyond the realm of our school budget. The most recent donation of our new Inspire Nyack MacLab provides a quality learning environment that enables our high school students to think critically, communicate effectively, and maximize their natural creative abilities. Our Board of Education and school community deeply appreciate the efforts of this extraordinary group of volunteers who have strived to make the educational experience in Nyack truly exceptional”
The Inspire Nyack Lab includes 22 Macintosh computers with keyboards, headphones, and specialized software. Two classes began in September and more classes are anticipated next year focusing on graphic art and music composition. In addition to creating greater accessibility to the arts for the general student population, the lab is a powerful tool teachers are using to engage students in learning about computer science. “It was exciting to experience what the students will be learning in the new classes offered in the MacLab, this will likely transform art and technology education at the Nyack High School. All this was made possible by the support of parents and members of the community that share a vision of developing STEM education within the Nyack schools.” – President of Inspire Nyack foundation, Gordon Weiss
Since 2007, the foundation has raised $330,000 to support STEM education in the Nyack schools. Inspire Nyack is able to make significant donations to the district because of the success of its annual fundraising event, Casino Night, which attracts hundreds of people from the community. The 2016 Casino Night is scheduled for Saturday, March 5th from 7:30pm to 11:30pm at the Nyack Seaport.