Jackson Educator Wins $27,000 National ING Unsung Heroes Award

September 27, 2005 Atlanta, GA and Jackson, MS Share: Print Subscribe to Email Alerts

At a surprise celebration at Pecan Park Elementary School, project-based ExCEL program teacher, Peggy Carlisle was recognized by ING as one of the most innovative educators in the nation. Out of one hundred $2,000 finalists in the 2005 ING Unsung Heroes awards program, Carlisle, a resident of Flowood, MS, claimed the first place award of an additional $25,000 to fund the social studies and economic benefit program, “The “The Kenyan Project.”

In its 10th year, the ING Unsung Heroes awards program recognizes kindergarten through 12th grade educators nationwide for their innovative teaching methods, creative educational projects and ability to make a positive influence on the children they teach. The program, founded by ING U.S. Financial Services, has awarded more than $2.3 million to nearly 1,000 educators across the United States. This year’s ING Unsung Heroes winners were selected from a group of more than 1,100 educators

“The Kenyan Project was born purely out of the students’ desire to help others in need,” said Principal Wanda Quon. “With this program, Peggy Carlisle has provided her students with priceless knowledge and understanding of the Kenyan culture, resources and environment to further broaden their lives and help us all make connections with a larger community,"

Through a partnership with three bush schools serving students in Kitale, Kenya, “The Kenyan Project” helps Carlisle’s students gain first-hand accounts of life in another country by learning Swahili, writing letters to the Kenyan students and communicating with the schools through an exchange of class books and photographs. The Pecan Park students will also design a method of presenting Kenyan culture, resources and people through art, models, song and dance, which will be presented to the student body and community at The Kenyan Museum next spring.

Carlisle has also helped her students develop an understanding of free enterprise from the standpoint of a producer. As the class made and sold merchandise to raise money for the Kenyan schools, they encountered supply and demand, saw the results of advertising, and learned about the effects of material cost and price-setting on profit. Carlisle’s 156 third and fourth-grade students have already raised $650 for the Kenyan schools, and will extend the project into a student-run business, with profits benefiting their new-found friends in Kenya.

“This year ING is celebrating its 10th year of honoring outstanding educators around the country whose work to pioneer new methods and teaching techniques is sometimes overlooked,” said Bill Jasien, senior vice president of ING U.S. Financial Services. “Especially now with more than 300,000 K-12 students displaced due to Hurricane Katrina, working to establish a good education system is important to the future of this country, and ING will continue its commitment to help build a strong educational foundation for the future of America’s schoolchildren.”

With the destructive impact of Hurricane Katrina to the state, ING also donated two 55-gallon barrels of school supplies and $5,000 in total to approximately 20 displaced students who are now registered at Pecan Park Elementary School, in addition to the $1 million dollars ING donated to The Red Cross earlier this month.

Applicants for the ING Unsung Heroes awards program are asked to provide a project description, description of the program’s benefit to students and an accounting of how they would use the funds received. The 100 finalists are selected on program merit by Scholarship America, an independent, non-profit organization that administers this aspect of the program on ING’s behalf. ING’s Educators Advisory Board, consisting of renowned educators and administrators from across the country, selects the top three award recipients from that group of 100.

To learn about this year’s winning projects, as well as those from previous years, visit the ING Unsung Heroes Web site at www.ing.com/us/unsungheroes. Applications for the 2006 ING Unsung Heroes awards are available on the Web site. You can also receive an application by calling 800.537.4180 or emailing ing@scholarshipamerica.org

Press inquiries

Kristie Tomkins, 212.537.8270, ktomkins@gcigroup.com
Dafina McMillan, 212.537.8023 dmcmillan@gcigroup.com
Caroline Campbell, 770.618.3801, caroline.campbell@us.ing.com

About ING

ING Group is a global financial institution of Dutch origin offering banking, insurance and asset management to more than 60 million private, corporate and institutional clients in more than 50 countries. With a diverse workforce of more than 112,000 people, ING comprises a broad spectrum of prominent companies that increasingly serve their clients under the ING brand.

ING is a leader in providing 403(b) plans to kindergarten through 12th grade educators and other employees of nonprofit organizations in America. In the U.S., ING offers a comprehensive array of financial services to retail and institutional clients that includes retirement plans, mutual funds, managed accounts, alternative investments, direct banking, institutional investment management, annuities, life insurance, employee benefits, financial planning, and reinsurance. Currently, ING holds top-tier rankings in key U.S. markets and serves more than 14 million customers across the nation. For more information, visit www.ing.com.