The Lower School had a lot to hoot and holler about at an assembly announcing this year’s record-setting Read-A-Thon results. Gilman boys read a collective 4,562 hours and raised $27,612 in support of the new neonatal intensive care unit at the University of Maryland Children’s Hospital.
As the Lower School boys learned earlier this year in a special video to kick off the Read-A-Thon, there are currently as many as ten newborn babies in each of the hospital’s four rooms in need of intensive care. Gilman’s donations will help expand this unit to 52 individual rooms with space for parents to spend more time with their babies. In fact, the Read-A-Thon raised enough money to have one of those rooms dedicated in Gilman School’s honor.
After the boys received individual recognition, students presented a check to Gilman parents Alexandra Bessent-Enright, director of marketing at the University of Maryland Medical Center, and Suzanne Boyle, senior director of development at University of Maryland Children’s Hospital.
“I’m here representing all those babies and all those parents who couldn’t spend the night with their babies because they didn’t have a room. And now they’ll have a room, all because of your efforts,” Boyle told the boys. “If you’re ever having a bad day, always remember that your combined efforts, and what you did individually, made this happen.”
The Lower School had 283 students, plus Dr. Webster, participating. Nine homerooms earned 100 percent participation (1A,1B, 1C, 2A, 2B, 2C, 3B, 3C, 4C) with two homerooms coming very close to 100 percent (3A and 5B).
Dr. Webster closed the assembly by saying, “As you know, one of our Gilman Five values is humility, but I think this morning, we can take a moment to feel humbly proud about what we’ve done to help the NICU at University of Maryland Children’s Hospital.”