The Cortland Branch of the AAUW created the Meyer’s Flyers Award to honor Helen Meyer. Helen was a longtime member of the organization and a devoted teacher of young children in the Cortland community for several decades. Meyer not only believed in the success of her students academically, but she was also keenly aware of how important it was that these young students grew up to be good people in the community. Meyer kept track of all her students well after high school graduation, often sending letters of congratulations and encouragement. AAUW is a national organization that includes education as an integral aspect of their mission.
Research indicates fifth grade as the pivatol point for the emergence of social interaction. Sometimes academics take a back seat as students try to find a niche. Targeting that fifth grade population, local teachers nominated their fifth grade students for the award. The AAUW award committee select the students based on effort, determination to do well in school, being brave enough to ask for help when needed and a willingness to help others in the schoool or home community. The purpose of the award is to provide incentive to young students by giving them acknowledgement of how far they have progressed. This “pat on the back” serves as encouragement to continue on this path of lifelong learning and service.
The students receive a framed certificate and a book to enjoy. Each student is matched with a “buddy” from the AAUW who will write letters and cards of encouragement as incentive to continue their hard work.
Following the award presentation, the students and their families enjoy refreshments and converse with their new AAUW friends.