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Dale KCF CopyIn 1936, Dale Carnegie published “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” offering advice on how to achieve professional and personal success. On November 19, 2018, 25 State College Area School District students from the high school, the Delta Program and Central PA Institute of Science and Technology completed the popular course based on Carnegie’s book, thanks to a gift from local tech firm KCF Technologies.

“Our team members at KCF are big fans of the Dale Carnegie principles, and many of us have personally experienced the transformative power of the training course, including our CEO Jeremy Frank,” KCF’s VP of Sales Ben Lawrence told the crowd at the student’s graduation. The firm’s decision to fund the course was based on a desire to help students learn to develop stronger peer relationships and make an impact on helping to mitigate bullying and violence in schools.

“We believe students who have a vision for their lives and who bring their best every day, can learn to help other students who might need a lift,” Lawrence told the students. “Ultimately it’s an investment in you. We want you to be ambassadors for helping other students feel connected.”

KCF’s investment appeared to pay off as the students shared their thoughts on the eight-week program. Nearly all the students admitted they were reluctant at first, especially to give up the time required for completing the course. In the end, though, they each experienced a breakthrough in personal growth.

Student reflections on the course included remarks ranging from overcoming extreme fear of public speaking to learning how to make deeper connections with others. Others said it helped them learn to cope with and overcome stress; gave them confidence to approach new relationships and activities; improved their active listening skills; encouraged a positive outlook; highlighted the importance of daily gratitude; and taught the importance of having a personal vision for the future.

SCASD Superintendent Bob O’Donnell and SCAHS Principal Curtis Johnson attended graduation to witness the personal development of each student. The course highlighted the important role that emotional intelligence, social skills and interpersonal skills play in life and career success.

“Life after high school requires balance and an ability to see the bigger picture—two things we value at KCF Technologies,” said Lawrence. “We simply wanted to share these principles with today’s students, who are the leaders of tomorrow.”

Lawrence also emphasized the importance of training students in technical fields with the ‘soft skills’ developed in the Dale Carnegie program. According to Lawrence, KCF is always seeking new employees who can demonstrate high emotional intelligence and strong interpersonal skills, in addition to technical skill.

The graduates are pictured below with KCF Technologies VP of Sales Ben Lawrence, SCASD Superintendent Bob O’Donnell, SCAHS Principal Curtis Johnson, Dale Carnegie Instructors Jackie Rodgers and Cara Adien, KCF Technologies CFO Luke Massaro, KCF Technologies CEO Jeremy Frank, and KCF Technologies employee Nate Woodman.