Taking a piece of PIE: 704th MI Brigade joins Partners in Education, adopts MacArthur Middle

MacArthur Middle School Principal Eugene Whiting speaks to the audience during a Veterans Day Assembly last November. The school has signed an agreement for the Partners in Education Adopt-a-School Program with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 704th Military Intelligence Brigade. (File photo)

By Staff Sgt. Cashmere Jefferson, 704th MI Brigade Public Affairs Office

Leaders from Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 704th Military Intelligence Brigade signed a school partnership agreement for the Partners in Education Adopt-a-School Program.

They were joined by Eugene Whiting, the principal of MacArthur Middle School, and Antoinette Parker, Fort Meade’s school liaison officer.

The Adopt-A-School Program contributes military resources and services to schools in order to nurture the intellectual, emotional, social and physical growth of children in the Fort Meade area, to increase public awareness of the Army’s mission, and to foster good relations.

The program fosters a better understanding of the community’s school system, strengthens and improves school programs and curricula, and creates a sense of personal involvement and interaction between organizations and schools, said Parker.

Capt. Andrew P. Nodtvedt, commander of HHC 704th MI, whose wife Meredith is a fourth grade teacher for Anne Arundel County Public Schools, made the commitment to adopt MacArthur Middle School with less than a week in command.

He said some of the biggest impacts of his life came from teachers who took the extra time to shape his life.

When the opportunity to get involved with MacArthur Middle School through Partners in Education presented itself, Nodtvedt said he saw it as an exciting opportunity to give back to educators and provide positive role models for local youth and the community.

“HHC Soldiers have a unique opportunity to play a direct role in improving our community,” Nodtvedt said. “By mentoring students during lunch, helping with after-school tutoring and activities, we can assist teachers in their essential role of educating our nation’s youth, creating what I hope will be a positive lasting impact for the students of MacArthur Middle School.”

MacArthur Middle School serves an estimated 1,150 students in grades six to eight who reside both on and off post. according to the school’s website.

Under the new agreement, the unit solidifies the relationship with the school and is devising ways to serve its partner school.

“We have so many things going on in the school for your Soldiers to be a part of, whether you want to tutor, teach, coach or mentor students, participate in our school events, or be a lunch buddy, the impact you can have here on the lives of our students is powerful,” Whiting said. “I’m excited for what’s to come this upcoming school year.”

Whiting emphasized the importance of the presence of a Soldier in the halls of the school, just to give a high-five, and how that makes a difference.

Partnering with MacArthur not only benefits the middle school students, but gives Soldiers an opportunity to learn more and contribute to the local community they are now a part of.

“The 704th Military Intelligence Brigade, year after year, continues to exude selfless service throughout the community,” Nodtvedt said. “I’m excited that HHC can be an active part of that legacy and give back to the communities that support us.”

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