THOUSAND PALMS – One local student’s hard work and good grades are sending him around the world, but the weak economy is threatening to shortchange his trip.
Jerred Montgomery, a fifth grader at Della Lindley Elementary School in Thousand Palms was chosen as one of a handfull of student ambassadors from Riverside County to travel to Australia for the summer
The cultural experience is part of thePeople to People Student Ambassador Program.
“I’ll teach them about my life and how we live and they will teach me about theirs,” says Montgomery.
Students are selected based on their good grades and leadership skills.
“He is a great student,” says Georgia Terlaje, Jerred’s teacher. “He always wants to know more. He digs for information.”
Jerred’s hard work doesn’t end in the classroom. He has spent countless hours and a lot of creativity raising money for this trip.
“I’ve been making beef jerky and candy and selling it,” says Montgomery.
Jerred has sold crafts and snacks, held garage sales, and even gone to local businesses looking for sponsors.
“It’s been a lot of work.I have to wake up early,” says Montgomery.
The trip costs $6,000. Jerred is still about $3,000 short. He’s also shorter on time. He’s set to leave next month. Now, his teacher hopes the weak economy won’t ground his worldly travel plans.
“It’s good for kids to get out and see that the Coachella Valley isn’t the only place in the world,” says Terlaje. “It’s a great experience.”
If Jerred cashes in and makes this trip around the globe, it will only be the beginning of his adventures.
Next, he plans to explore the universe.
“I want to be an astronomer,” says Montgomery.
If you’d like to help Jerred become a student ambassador, he’s taking donations.
His family has set up an account at Rabo Bank, 72885 Ramon Road in Thousand Palms. The account is under Jerred Montgomery, attn.: Brian. To phone in donations, call 760-343-3000.