LAPSF Telethon Raises Funds and Engages Students


Earlier this year, the Los Alamos Public Schools Foundation invited Los Alamos High School students to participate in a telethon to raise money for Los Alamos Public Schools. 

LAPS Foundation Executive Director Joanna Gillespie organized the telethon and trained the telethon volunteers.

The Foundation’s mission is to leverage time, talent and funds to promote innovative learning in Los Alamos Public Schools. The foundation funds professional development for teachers, Great Ideas Grants submitted by teachers, teacher licensure and classroom materials requested by teachers. 

The Foundation relies on donations from the public for funds. The Foundation is a 501 C (3) organization, so donations to the LAPS Foundation are tax deductible. Most of the funds come through the Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Employee Giving campaign, but the Foundation leaves no stone unturned in their efforts to improve Los Alamos schools. 

Los Alamos High School students phoned parents of LAPS students asking for donations. The group of students included Mary Brug, Sarah Criscuolo, Justine Dombrowski, Angela Feng, Kristen Haertling, Andres Jiron, Luke Kachelmeier, Grace Kim, Aneesh Pawar, Emily Pittman, Kaylen Pocaterra, and Camille Rousculp from the LAHS Key Club; Connor Bailey from the Los Alamos Youth Leadership (LAYL) group Teamtastics; and student body president and vice-president, Soumyo Lahiri-Gupta and Justin Dunn. 

The students worked from 5:45-8 p.m. The students were joined in making phone calls by LAPS Foundation board members Kurt Deshayes, Thelma Hahn and Morrie Pongratz. 

The telethon was very successful having raised $1,290 to date. Another positive outcome of the telethon was engaging students for their own benefit. 

“Helping out with the telethon was a rewarding experience because I knew that I was assisting in the betterment of our children’s education,” Lahiri-Gupta said.

Donations to the foundation can be made at the Foundation’s website at

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