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Thumbs Up: To Victoria Booth-Doyle, who changed her life after back-to-back misfortunes.

The former art student lost everything she owned in a house fire, including her portfolio. Within a week, Booth-Doyle, 26, lost her job, as well.

The single mother was pregnant with her second child at the time.

After the giving birth, she focused on her passion rather than a paycheck. Her desire was to work with animals and she pursued a biology career.

After a stint with a local wildlife center, she received an internship at a moose rescue organization — in Alaska.

"I have never flown in a plane, I’ve never been anywhere past Tennessee,” and she’s never been apart from her kids, she said.

This courageous and ambitious York countian needs some financial help, however, to purchase equipment for her trip to Alaska in May. To donate, visit the page at www.gofundme.com/internshipinalaska.

Thumbs Up: To York City School District’s plan to convert the empty Edgar Fahs Smith Middle School into an academy focusing on science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics.

Superintendent Eric Holmes cited the success of STEAM academies in other urban school districts, when he made the proposal in April.

“As part of the goals of the recovery plan, (we hope) to keep students here in the school district and draw students back,” Holmes said.

This would allow more students to be served at the existing STEAM program at Ferguson K-8.

We also applaud the choice to include an art curriculum in the traditional STEM offerings.

“Having the arts component has been phenomenal” at Ferguson, Holmes said.

The move would help to keep children in the district rather than them choosing a move to a vocational or charter school.

And that is something the beleaguered district needs.

Thumbs Up: It’s not a karaoke contest, so you don’t have to have a good singing voice, just a good nature to participate in Visiting Angels of York’s Alzheimer’s fundraisers.

Touted as “Sing for a Cure” lip-sync competition, event organizers are looking for participants.

“We’re asking people to grab a group of friends or co-workers or just perform yourself and bring some fun and laughter into people’s lives for the day,” said Sue Heinle, CEO of Visiting Angels of York, Hanover and Lancaster.

For a $25 registration fee participants can mimic their favorite stars to their favorite songs. All proceeds will go to the Alzheimer's Association. Many clients of Visiting Angels suffer from dementia.

The event was a big hit at a Visiting Angels facility out west, and organizers hope it catches on in York.

Here’s the schedule:

  • Sunday, Aug. 13, 2 p.m., SpiriTrust Lutheran The Village at Sprenkle Drive-Gladfelter Center
  • Thursday, Sept. 14, 3:30 p.m., Windy Hill on the Campus Senior Center at Spring Grove School District campus
  • Monday, Sept. 18, 6:30 p.m., York College, DeMeester Recital Hall.

It promises to be lots of fun for a good cause.

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