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Beckfield Dean Honored by Erlanger/Elsmere Board of Education

Brandy Exeler, Dean of the Criminal Justice program at Beckfield College's Florence campus, has been honored by The Erlanger/Elsmere Board of Education for organizing a community service project that collects and donates schools supplies to the district's students.

For the past five years, Exeler, who grew up in Erlanger and graduated from Lloyd High School, has organized and managed a program at Beckfield called "Supplies for Success". Students in her Criminal Justice program set up donation boxes and collect school supplies that are then donated to local schools each year. In addition to donating to the Erlanger/Elsmere schools, school supplies have also been donated to the Covington Independent School District and the Kenton County School District.

"It's a great honor to be recognized by the school district," Exeler said. "I grew up in Erlanger and graduated from Lloyd High School, so of course I like giving back when I can. The Erlanger/Elsmere schools were very receptive and appreciative of the donations. Students that received some of the items drew pictures and sent letters thanking us. Each year we continue and look forward to donating to this district.

"I teach my students the importance of community service and volunteering in their communities," she said. "If we make a difference in one child’s life and help them to have a positive experience in their education, then we have done something worthwhile."

Beckfield College administrators said that because the school is locally-based, the faculty, students and staff feel a bond and connection to the Northern Kentucky community.

"Brandy is always going above and beyond to support the Criminal Justice Program," said Beckfield Florence Campus President Mia Granacher. "We are so thankful to Brandy for being such as positive influence in our community and for all she does for the Beckfield family."

Exeler said one of the goals of Supplies for Success is getting students excited about education.

"My grandpa used to say your education was something that you earned and that nobody could ever take it away from you," Exeler said. "We just want to help some local kids start off the school year on a positive note. It can be tough going back to school and not having the new supplies that everyone else has and it can be very expensive for parents. We want kids to be excited about going back to school and want to help provide some of the supplies they need to be successful."

- Staff report/Photo: Brandy Exeler (provided)