Tuesday, 5 July 2011

A Message from Mr Rostek

First of all, I want to thank everyone for joining us on this journey and helping us reach our campaign summit.  It is truly inspiring the way so many people came together; students, employees, neighbors, and total strangers.  I think this proves how important teamwork and cooperation are.  If I could ask everyone to remember one thing, it would be this:  we can accomplish far more together than we can isolated and alone.

On that note, I'd like to thank some specific people.  First, some students.  These students all gave some of their own free time to help us reach our goal: 

Sami A.
Simone A.
Mugbil B.

Salma B
Sharmin B.
Shahera B.
Tiani H.
Amelia J.
Amedina K.
Nisada M.
Iqra N.
Jenny O.
Karolina R.
Rabea R.
Anna S.
Emad S.
Marta S.
Bart W.

Many thanks to Toni Coral for her coordination of our on-line profile.

Finally, there were two women without whom, this campaign would not have existed:  Cat Ruffner and Lisa Vreede.  These ladies  (a board member and vice-president respectively of the Grosse Pointe Foundation Public Education ) helped us create the account with Piast Institute, helped secure the Yellowbrick gps device, and offered tremendous enthusiasm and support.

Sunday, 3 July 2011

The final tally

Somewhere along the way, we missed a few names on our donors lists, so here they are

Monica Mathews
The Szuberla family
the Class of 2011
the Hamtramck Adiminstartors Association
James and Lynn Zylinski
Hamtramck Medical Pharmacy
Dearborn Plaza Coney Island
Elizabeth Zwolak
Matthew Shim
Brian and Megan Roether
Anthony Guerreiro
Kevin Kondrat
Kenneth Jr. and Kimberly Whipple
Dr. Russ Chavey

Our grand total exceeded our ultimate goal of $20,320.  We have to thank everyone who helped in any way.  Perhaps you donated money, or time at a fundraiser.  Maybe you offered moral support to John on his climb.  Whatever you did, you helped us raise $20,877.97.  Thank you so much!

Will we still take donations?  Absolutely!  Make that check out to Piast Institute ("Mr. Rostek's Climb" in the memo) and mail it to:

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Word from a slightly lower elevation

When I spoke with John on Saturday, he said he'd call...then the call was lost.  Luckily, I had a chance to speak with John today to get a clearer picture on the end of the climb.

In order to reach the summit, the team has to take part of the gear to the next camp.  That meant climbing from 14,000, up the head wall to the 17,000 mark.  According to John, the head wall is the steepest and (to my ears) the most technical part of the climb.  There are six permanent ropes, approximately 50 feet apart.  The climbers really put to use the crampons and pick axes to achieve this climb and the team did it.  John spoke of how this aspect was the most daunting task of the trip.  First of all, physically, the head wall represents the steepest climb: 2000 feet starting at 40 percent grade and raising to a 60 percent grade.  Everyone feels the burns in their calves on this climb.  Mentally, John said that hanging on ropes 50 feet apart from the others on the team left a climber completely alone with his thoughts - even a little lonely.  Self-doubt and homesickness begin to creep into the brain.  John said that what he did to fight off those thoughts was to imagine the students right there with him, urging him on.

Once they hit the top of the head wall, he was able to walk along the ridge wall and over to Wahsburn's Thumb.  He said the view was just spectacular.  But, looking back on it. he cannot imagine being up there with the weather that was heading their way.

The team descended back down to 14,000 to retrieve the rest of the gear (after the three hour trip up) and the bad weather hit.  At one point, they were pinned in their tents for about 30 hours.    Visibility was nil.  The winds pounded the tents and the National Parks Service rangers told them that the weather would not clear for at least another three days. Two feet of snow fell on them, fully covering the lines and the path that had been previously tramped into the snow.  This is when the team decided to abort the climb.  Based on the weather that occurred at the summit, this was the wise choice.  The summit received five feet of snow and experienced wind gusts of up to 100 miles per hour.

While John is disappointed that he and the team did not reach the summit, he realizes that they made the only decision they could make.  There was a team from China camping next to them who were going to wait out Mother Nature.  The team gave them some of their extra food and then came down the mountain.  The snow followed John and the team.  He said that coming down was like being in a snow globe, snow puffing up from the ground and flying hither and yon. They had to spend an extra night on the lower glaciers because the weather did not permit the plane to come in and get them.

I spoke to John while he was in Talkeetna, the place where the journey started.  He has a touch of bronchitis and should be home in a couple of days.  He is thrilled to have taken this trip and proud of the students who have helped to raise nearly $18,000 for student activities Hamtramck Public Schools.

You can, of course, still donate.  Make your check out to Piast Institute ("Mr. Rostek's Climb" in the memo) and mail it to:

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Saturday, 25 June 2011


Two days ago, the team reached the 17,400 feet mark. They dropped off half the equipment and laid 6 lines, with the intention of going back up.  However, Mother Nature had a different idea.  The team has experienced extreme white-out conditions for the past 48 hours.  The National Park Service ranger (there is one stationed at each designated camp site) informed that team that the white out conditions would continue for at least three more days.  The team needs to be off the mountain by June 30.  Thus, the team decided to abort the climb.

Our phone call was cut off three times, so I'm not really sure how long the descent will take.  As soon as I know, you will, too.

Friday, 24 June 2011

Among the clouds

After putting in an 11 hour day on Wednesday, John Rostek and the team reached the 14,000 feet mark.  Not only are the climbers above the clouds, but they also stand poised to attack the final 6,000 feet.  At the 14,000 feet mark, they are at the base of the peak.  In order to make next steps safe, the team is taking a couple of days to acclimatize themselves to the elevation.

They have left the sleds behind, a fact that made John pretty happy.  They will go up a ridge line in order to reach the summit.  Depending on the weather, they just might make that peak some time this weekend.  First, they will have to reach and camp at 17,000 feet.

Just how is that weather?  During the day, John stated that it was just beautiful.  The sun's reflection off the glaciers emit enough heat to walk about in a fleece and light gloves.  Over night, however, the temperature drops dramatically.  Condensation in the tent freezes.  John anticipates that the cold will play a much larger factor in the final ascent.

Everyone on the team is healthy, though John showed signs of a bit of a cough on the phone.  He wasn't winded and was very alert.

If you haven't already made you TAX DEDUCTIBLE donation - why are you waiting???
Make your check out to:  Piast Institute ("Mr Rostek's Climb" in the memo) and mail it to:

Hamtramck Public School
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Thanks for your support.

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Day 3 and a game of who can get there first

John just called in to report that they have indeed reached 11,000 feet.  He said that pulling the sled was extremely tiring and laborious.  I asked if it got very dark at night and he said no AND that the sun was gleaming brilliantly off the glaciers, making the ice mushy.  Then, I lost the call.  He sounds tired, but coherent.

John and the team are 9,000 feet from their goal of reaching the 20,320 summit.  Our fund raising goal is only $2463 away from the $20,320.  Our total stand today at $17,857.97.  The question is, who will get to 20,320 first: our mountain climbers or the fund for student activities in Hamtramck Public Schools?  You can help us get there first.  Please send that check today.  Here's the information:

Make the check out to Piast Institute ("Mr. Rostek's Climb" in the memo) and mail it to:

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Friday, 17 June 2011

Day 1

Most of the day was spent waiting in the hangar, waiting for the weather to clear.  It was rainy and visibility was too poor to drop the team at the mountain.

Clearance finally came late afternoon, Hamtramck time.  Alaska is four hours behind Michigan.  The call to Michigan came in around 11:10 at night.  The first words out of John's mouth were, "It's beautiful here."  He then gave a quick rundown on what would happen next.  At about 2:00 p.m. our time, the team would begin the climb to the second camp, 9,200 feet.  The team started at 7,200 feet.  They will climb for six hours, set up camp, eat and sleep during the day.  They will climb at night because of the lower temperatures.  The surface of the glaciers will harden at those temperatures, making the climb easier (relatively speaking.)

Check back here tomorrow for more.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

How to prepare to climb a mountain

Since January, John Rostek has been enduring increasingly difficult physical training in order to be ready to climb Mt. McKinley (Denali): tread mills at the steepest incline while carry a 70 pound backpack, dragging 50 pound sleds up hills in area parks, and running 10 miles. 

All of those tasks will help him (and the other 10 people in the team) as they start their ascent tomorrow.  So, what has the team been doing since arriving in Anchorage on Tuesday?  Grocery shopping.  Everyone in the team will cart food provisions up the mountain by dragging a large, heavy-duty sled.  Today, John bought Ramen noodles, mac and cheese, sardines, cheese, bagels, snickers, trail mix, peanut butter, crackers, instant soup, beef sticks, and instant potatoes.  All of it is food that is both easy to transport and easy to make.

That's not all the team did today. They also traveled to  Talkeetna (a four hour drive) to meet with the National Park Service for an orientation before starting their trek. John also worked in an interview with the public radio station at Central Michigan University, his alma mater.  Just as soon as that link is available, we'll bring it to you.

On the home front, our fund raising total has topped the $17,000 mark.  The big question remaining is who will reach 20,320 first, John Rostek or the fund for student activities in the Hamtramck Public Schools?  You can help student activities in Hamtramck by sending your TAX DEDUCTIBLE check, made out to Piast Institute ("Mr. Rostek's Climb" in the memo), to:

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Thanks for all of your support!

Saturday, 11 June 2011


That is our current grand total.  We are incredibly touched by everyone's generosity.  Only $3,742 remain until we hit our goal of $20,320.  We have some people to thank for their kindness this week.  Thank you to:

Joseph and Karen Quinlan : 17,200 Ft.Crest Camp
Avanti Press: 17,200 Ft. Crest Camp
Balance & Strength:  20,320 Ft. Summit Camp
Sandy Sabotka
Samir Al-Hadwan:  17,200 Ft. Crest Camp
Tony Marasco: 11,000 Ft. Camp

John Rostek starts his climb on Thursday, June 16.  It's not too late to donate and it's simple.  Make the check out to Piast Institute ("Mr. Rostek's climb" in the memo) and mail it to:

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Bells and whistles!

If you  look to the immediate left of this post, just above our total page view counter, you will see some new text.  It reads "Click here to track Mr. Rostek's as he climb's Mt. McKinley."  Well, go ahead and click it, I'll wait...

That is a link to a GPS device that Mr. Rostek will wear.  Once he starts his trek, we can join him.  Right now, you are looking at the U.K.  I promise, he is not there. 

He and the team start their climb on June 16, so come back here often to see where they are.

In the meantime, feel free to make a check out to the Piast Institute ("Mr. Rostek's Climb" in the memo) and mail that TAX DEDUCTIBLE donation to

Hamtramck Public School
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Thanks for all of your support!

Sunday, 5 June 2011

With great apologies

The run-up to the end of the school year is an extremely busy time of year and your intrepid blogger has been swamped.  Please accept this mea culpa and this very belated list of donors.  Hang on, it's a lengthy list(and it's not in alphabetical order, but in the order the donation was received):

7,200 Feet Base Camp
Joseph and Shirley Kroon
Rula Bilbeisi
Mike Stenvig
Jennifer Maloney
Robert and Joy Lamerato
Stephanie Ashcraft
Valerie Allen
Amel Alibasic
Ramuald Szuberla
Mike Dobbyn
Makedonka Dimitrijeska
Nancy Erickson
Marybeth Williamson
David Hecker
Christina Adamczyk
Richard Kolbusz
Apostoll Lala
David Preston

9,500 Feet Camp
Stanley and Justina Nalepa
Jacqueline Dziedziula
Sean Carter
Diana Kolaj
Tanya Bardy
Jackie Delekta

11,000 Feet Camp 
Andrew MacGibbon
Susan Richner
Gregory King
Anthony Bagdasarian
Laurie Kroon
DBA Pharmor Pharmacy
KMS Jean Collection

14,200 Feet Camp
AFSCME Local 257
Gail and Lois Warden
Class of 2007

17,200 Feet Crest
Alpha Delta Kappa Beta Nu Chapter
Hamtramck DDA

20,320 Feet Summit
Dr. Mary Beth Hardwicke

There is still time to mail your TAX Deductible check.  Make it out to Piast Institute (put "Mr. Rostek's climb in the memo and mail it to:

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Thanks to everyone!

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Meet the team - Simone!

So, just who are these high school students working on the Climbing for Success campaign?  Well, how about if they tell you who they are.  First up is Simone, the sophomore presenter from Maria's Comida:

I decided to work on this project because anything to further extracurricular involvements in our school would be great. Having the ability to be in something great that shows student empowerment is what I go for. Whatever opportunity there is out there, I grab it. Mr. Rostek asked me to work on this project along side with other students and I thought it was a brilliant idea.  Coming from a student prospective, he's a teacher who is a determined and kind human being.

Currently, I am involved in Student Council, and will soon to be a Creative Inklings junior counselor once again. Creative Inklings is a summer creative writing camp for elementary students.  In the past, I have been involved in a lot of extracurricular activities, but these are the activities I am active in now.

I think for a student, it is important to have experience in anything you do. If you want a little more knowledge outside the classroom, join a club. In my culture, we are very traditional and less lenient than others. For me, extracurricular activities show what a determined student I am, and what I am capable of in terms of being a Muslim girl. In the activities that I have participated in, I was not only able to gain experience, but I fed off other people and learned a few things.  I realized that you can achieve academically, but what is the point of being an Honor student if you can’t put it to the test? It has been an extreme challenge, but overall it is worth it. You are learning skills that you do not learn in a classroom and skills that you can take with you wherever you go.

I am Simone, a determined student working on the Marketing aspects of this campaign. 

Sunday, 15 May 2011

The kids did a great job!

Every third Sunday of the month, Maria's Comida, a restaurant in Hamtramck, hosts an event that will support a local project designed to improve the city.  The event is called Diverse (Soup) City .Everyone one pays $7.00 for a meal of delicious soup (tonight's was vegan ratatouille), fresh bread, a beverage, and something sweet.  During the meal, pre-arranged groups deliver a brief presentation about a project that they hope will be funded through the night's proceeds.

Tonight, the Climbing for Success campaign made its appeal to the crowd gathered at the cozy environs of Maria's.  First to speak was John Rostek who gave a brief overview of his goal to climb Mt. McKinley.  Next, Emad and Karolina (two juniors at HHS) spoke about how much money we are hoping to raise and why.  Finally, Iqra and Simone (a senior and a sophomore) displayed a beautiful poster (replete with flashing stars) they created and Iqra spoke specifically about how attending events with Student Council helped her to become a better leader.  Five other students came out to support the presentation.

After all of the presentations were complete, the diners voted.  Our table held hands as the results were announced.  The winner - Climbing for Success.  The total grant received tonight is $302!  Thanks Maria's Comida and SOUP patrons.

If you would like to help us reach the summit amount of $20,320, please make your check out to Piast Institute (please write "Mr. Rostek's Climb" in the memo) and mail that TAX DEDUCTIBLE donation to:

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Thanks for your continued support!

Friday, 13 May 2011

What an amazing week

So many people and organizations have supported the campaign this week, we better get started saying thank you!  This may take a while.

Kim Hancasky - 9,500 Ft. Camp
Millie Hirsch - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Selma Ticevic - 11,00 Ft. Camp
Don Mullen - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Suzanne Borushko - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Pat Serafino - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Daniela Gjorgjevska - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
the Starr family - 11,000 Ft. Camp
Cynthia and James DeNardis - 9,500 Ft. Camp
Hamtramck Federation of Teachers - 17,200 Ft. Crest Camp
Brooke Jones - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Cynthia Manardo - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Stacey Provencher - 7, 200 Ft. Base Camp
Rene Romanczuk - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Maureen Langenderfer - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Laura Baugh-  9,500 Ft. Camp
Rula Bilbeisi - 7,200 Ft. Base Camp

As always, you may send your TAX DEDUCTIBLE donation, in the form of a check made out to Piast Institue (Mr. Rostek's Climb in the memo) to:

Hamtramck Public School
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Monday, 9 May 2011

We're having a party!!!!

In order to really send the campaign soaring to new heights, Climbing for Success has teamed up with New Dodge Lounge (8850 Jos. Campau, Hamtramck) for a night of food, fun, friends, and fantastic music.

Join us on Friday, May 20 from 4:00 PM until we shut down the place.  We'll feed you with delicious pasta, pizza, and hot dogs, get your feet moving to live music and supreme spinning by a DJ, and offer you ample opportunities at winning great prizes.  No need to RSVP and no set cover charge - you just show up and make your own reasonable donation at the door.

See you on May 20th!

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Where are our manners?

The altitude must have gotten to us as this should have been posted a couple of days ago.  Our thanks this week go out to the following people and businesses:

Royal Kabob: 14,200 Ft. Camp
Glory Supermarket: 11,000 Ft. Camp
Renee Savage: 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Kevin Ashford: 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Joanne Malczewski: 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Alice Dembowski: 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Myra Barnett: 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Joyce Bujak: 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Jill Doherty Photography: 7,200 Ft. Base Camp
Theresa Zillich: 7,200 Ft. Base Camp

Thanks for your support!

Tax Deductible donations, in the form of a check, may be written to Piast Institute (please put "Mr. Rostek's Climb" in the memo) and mailed to:

Hamtramck Public School
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Saturday, 30 April 2011

It's that time again

We have a lot of people to thank for making contributions this week, so we better get started:

Pamela Rostek - 7,200 ft. Base Camp
Ann Schumacher - 9,500 ft. Camp
HHS DECA - 9,500 ft. Camp
The Hamtramck Review - 17,200 Crest Camp
Janet Tabakovic - 9,500 ft. Camp
Thomas Niczay - 11,000 ft. Camp
Susan Sarti - 7,200 ft. Camp
Tricia Maslowski
Joan Borushko - 7,200 ft. Base Camp
Dena Smola - 9,500 ft. Camp
Sharalene Charns - 11,000 ft. Camp
Nancy Topulli - 9,500 ft. Camp
Maine Street Restaurant - 17,200 Crest Camp
Paula Stachowski - 7,200 ft. Base Camp
Dr. Russ Chavey - 11,000 ft. Camp

We could not do this without all of you and your support.  As always, please make your TAX DEDUCTIBLE check out to Piast Institute (put "Mr Rostek's Climb" in the memo) and mail it to:

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Hear all about it!

Today, we are sending out a big thank you to our next flag sponsor, local paper The Hamtramck Review.  You might remember that the review had a very nice article about the campaign just last Friday right here - http://www.hamtramckreview.com/2011/04/hamtown-movers-and-shakers/ .  Now they join Dickinson East and FRD Pharmacy as flag sponsors.

If you wish to make a TAX DEDUCTIBLE (it's not too early to think about next year's returns), simply write a check to Piast Institute (put Mr. Rostek's Climb in the memo) and mail it to:

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Thanks and we hope to be able to add your name to our summit flag.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

The lastet round of thank yous

We may not have had school this week, but the campaign kept rolling along. On Wednesday,  Mr. Rostek pounded the pavement in Hamtramck and picked up a few more donations.  A number of businesses made verbal commitments to supporting the climb, and we'll find out on Tuesday if any checks have been mailed to the district while we've been on vacation.

Our thanks this week go to:

Lois Doniver: 7,200 ft. Base Camp
David and Kathleen Watza: 7,200 ft. Base Camp
Juljan Tinaj: 7,200 ft. Base Camp
Dr. Raghda Chwikani (from the Hamtramck Medical Center):  11,000 ft. Camp
FRD Phamramcy: 17,200 ft. Crest Camp

Thank you so much!

Tax deductible donations may be written to Piast Institute (please put "Mr Rostek's Climb" in the memo) and mailed to

Hamtramck Public School
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Thanks again!

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Just what the doctor ordered

Just as they help patients from all over Hamtramck get the medicine they need, FRD Sav Mor Pharmacy has come through with a remedy for the Climbing for Success campaign - a check for 500 dollars!  FRD Sav Mor Pharmacy becomes the second flag sponsor and will have their business logo on the summit flag.

Congratulations and thanks for your support!

FRD Sav Mor Pharmacy
9811 Conant


Could you be next?

If you wish to make a TAX-DEDUCTIBLE contribution, make your check out to Piast Institute (put Mr. Rostek's Climb in the memo) and mail it to :

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Sunday, 17 April 2011

The frosting on the cake!

How many cupcakes does it take to get to the summit of Mt. McKinley?  That's a question that the Dickinson East Dolphins can answer.  Two days after hearing about the climb, the staff and the Dickinson East chapter of the National Elementary Honor Society organized a bake sale.  Delicious goodies, like cupcakes brownies, and cookies, flew off the table.  A cake raffle was held.  In the end, $563.15 were raised for Mr. Rostek's climb.

This means that the Dickinson Dolphins are our first summit flag sponsors.  Their school logo will be placed on the flag that Rostek will unfurl at McKinley's peak!  Great job Dolphins!

Who's next?

If you wish to make a TAX-DEDUCTIBLE contribution, make your check out to Piast Institute (put Mr. Rostek's Climb in the memo) and mail it to :

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Friday, 15 April 2011

A sincere thanks!

Once a week, we here at Climbing for Success want to thank those who have donated money that has been completely received.  At this writing, we know that there are pledges that have not yet arrived, and we will acknowledge you as soon as those donations arrive.

As the press release from yesterday stated, there are varying level of donations.  People can, of course, donate a little as five dollars.  The campaign will personally recognize all donations of $20 or more, according to this scale:

7,200 Feet Base Camp - $20
9,500 Ft. Camp - $50
11,000 Ft. Camp - $100
14,200 Ft. Camp - $250
17,200 Ft. Crest - $500
20,320 Ft. Summit - $1,000 or more

For donors of $500 or more, the name of the individual or business will be on the summit flag  that John takes with him and unfurls upon completion of his climb.

Here are the donors from this week:

Marian Strzelewicz -7,200 ft.. Base Camp
Amy Zacharias - 7,200 ft.  Base Camp
Anthony Bagdasarian - 11,000 ft. Camp
Matt Kanar - 7,200 ft. Base Camp
Justin Lilienthal - 7,200 ft. Base Camp
John Greiner - 7,200 ft. Base Camp
Richard Diebold - 9,500 ft. Camp
Veronica Lassen - 7,200 ft. Base Camp
Brad Neff - 9,500 ft. Camp

Thank you so much for helping us have a great first week.

If you wish to make a TAX-DEDUCTIBLE contribution, make your check out to Piast Institute (put Mr. Rostek's Climb in the memo) and mail it to :

Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

Monday, 11 April 2011

How did this all start?

Just where does one get the idea of climbing Mt.Denali (McKinley) in order to raise money for student activities?  Earlier this winter, Hamtramck High School business teacher heard an interview on the radio that turned his own personal goals into this shared goal he has for the district.

He heard an interview with Dr. Russ Chavey, who climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro in December, 2010.  Dr. Chavey had decided to support technology purchases in the Grosse Pointe school district. While listening to the interview, Rostek thought to himself, "I can do that."  In August, 2010, Rostek had already scaled Kilimajaro and was turning his sights to his next accomplishment.  He says, "My goal is to climb the seven summits."  He goes on to add, "I like to think there are eight summits, the eight being our personal achievements. I would love to help our students reach their own personal summit."

In order to do that, Rostek has recruited students to help run the Climbing for Success campaign.  The logo on this blog is student designed.  One student is keeping track of the books, while others are presenting the campaign to other schools in the area.  At all levels, Rostek's climb has become its own student activity, allowing students to put into practice skills they've learned in marketing class, accounting class, or as student council members.  Many of these students will graduate in June and will not personally benefit from any of the funds.  Already, these students are climbing towards their own personal summits.

How can you help?  Well, the goal is $1/per foot on Denali, so we are looking to raise $20,320.  Please write a tax-deductable check to

Piast Institute
Climbing for Success
Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

I promise that we are working on a PayPal account.

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Ain't No Mountain High Enough

With all the budget cuts happening in the world of education, it can feel like scaling a mountain to get funding for any of the extras.  But, as Marvin and Tammi (yes, we've got to show a little Motown love) told us, "ain't no mountain high enough."  That is just what Hamtramck High School business teacher, John Rostek decided.  He has decided to climb Mt. Denali in Alaska this summer in order to raise money for extra-curricular student activities.  He hopes to raise $1 for every foot of the mountain.  That would mean 20,320 dollars raised for student activities.  Some of those activities include student council, robotics and honor societies.  The activities funded through this effort (and more to come afterward) will benefit every Hamtramck Public School student, from Kindergarten through 12th grade.

Over the next weeks, we will be posting more information about our mountain climbing teacher, his guide, the mountain, and stories from students (past and present) about the importance extra-curricular activities played in their lives.

Our PayPal is in the works, but if you like what you've read so far, please consider making a donation to:

Climbing for Success
Hamtramck Public Schools
3201 Roosevelt
Hamtramck, MI 48212

More to come soon!