Troy Rivers, right, poses for a photo with his wife, Lindsay, and his son, Colt, in front of some of the Volkswagen vehicles that Troy has purchased. The Rivers family was recently featured in a owner spotlight video from Volkswagen. (Special Photo) 

A Rosebud Elementary School teacher was recently honored by Volkswagen USA for his passion for teaching and his love of Volkswagen Beetles.

Troy Rivers, a third-grade teacher at the South Gwinnett cluster elementary school, owns several of the classic cars, and they all get attention whenever he drives them to work.

Rivers said he was surprised when Volkswagen USA chose to feature him in an owner spotlight video, according to a news release.

“Volkswagen does owner spotlight videos. They choose different themes to spotlight,” Rivers said. “Volkswagen is working with Donorschoose this summer and wanted to put a spotlight on a teacher. They found me and reached out to me on Instagram.”

When he was a teenager, Rivers purchased his first Volkswagen — a bright green 1969 Baja Volkswagen Beetle. Since then, the Baja has become an important member of the Rivers family. It was the car he drove off in after exchanging vows with his wife, Lindsay, and it played a starring role in the couple’s pregnancy announcement of their son, Colt.

Over time, Rivers also acquired a 1970 Volkswagen Type 2 Bus, a 1973 Volkswagen Thing and four more vintage Volkswagen Beetles.

Although Rivers initially decided to study business, he was inspired to pursue a career in education after he realized how much he loved working with kids.

Rivers also uses his automotive know-how in his career. He co-sponsors a robotics club at Rosebud.

Volkswagen published the video “Troy and the Beetles” on YouTube on Aug. Filming took place during the summer.

“It was amazing to have an experience like this with my students,” Rivers said. “It was great to see a few students over the summer and for us to see together just how much work goes into filming a video.”

To see the video, visit

Gwinnett Online Campus launches first HUB

at McConnell Middle

Gwinnett Online Campus recently launched its first middle school HUB, or “blended” classroom, at McConnell Middle School in the Archer cluster.

In a blended classroom, both face-to-face and online instruction take place each day using digital content developed by Gwinnett County Public Schools teachers, according to a news release.

The inaugural HUB model at McConnell is designed to provide students an opportunity to learn their social studies curriculum through the online format with Gwinnett Online Campus content, delivered by a Gwinnett Online Campus teacher. Students receive daily support, both face-to-face and online, while strengthening technology literacy skills.

Gwinnett Online Campus has several blended learning classrooms in elementary schools, including Dyer Elementary in the Mountain View cluster, Alcova Elementary in the Dacula cluster and Jenkins Elementary in the Central Gwinnett cluster.

Brookwood Science Olympiad Team honored by

Board of Education

Brookwood High School’s Science Olympiad Team was recently recognized by the Gwinnett County Board of Education for the team’s successful season that ended with a state championship.

Science Olympiad offers students the opportunity for interscholastic competition rooted in science. It is one of the largest national science competitions, with more than 7,000 teams participating around the country each year.

Science Olympiad tournaments are composed of several events that require students to apply various science disciplines, such as biology, earth science, chemistry and physics, along with technology, problem solving and teamwork.

This past spring, the Brookwood Science Olympiad Team competed in the State Science Olympiad at Emory University. In a competition that featured the 24 best teams in the state, Brookwood took home top honors, winning its 11th Science Olympiad state championship. On its way to victory, Brookwood earned more medals than any other team in its history.

This first-place finish allowed Brookwood to represent Georgia in the National Science Olympiad at Cornell University, where the team was successful iun many events featuring the nation’s top science talent.

Team members included Gloria Adeola, Aashay Amin, Jiyuan Dong, Kaylee Fang, Jacquelyn Gwynn, Grace Guo, Alan Huynh, Ivy Li, Jack Li, Max Sommerville, Rachel Song, Rebecca Xiong, Hollis Zend and Alez Zou.

Also honored were co-head coaches Martha Brick and Jorge Diaz and assistant coaches Stephen Beall, Dan Miler, Charles Thornton and Jo Farmer. 

Vulcan and Gwinnett community 'crush' it for

Meadowcreek schools

Vulcan Materials Company hosted a Quarry Crusher Run May 4 at its Norcross Quarry, with proceeds benefiting Meadowcreek Elementary School, Radloff Middle School, Meadowcreek High School, and Boys and Girls Clubs of Gwinnett County.

A total of 761 runners participated in this year's race, surpassing the number of runners from the previous three years, according to Gwinnett County Public Schools.

Representatives from Vulcan Materials and Gateway 85 Gwinnett presented a check totaling $35,697.66 to the three GCPS schools at a recent School Board meeting, providing funds that will support numerous programs at the schools.

Next year's race was announced for Feb. 22, and McClure Health Science High School will be added as a recipient for the fundraiser.

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