Artazijah: One Sweet College Student
Welcome back to the POP QUIZ! This is a regular, yet totally unexpected, feature where we ask students, parents, staff, our friends, and partners to answer a few questions about what they are learning, reading, and thinking about. Today we feature Artazijah, a 2022 graduate of Kalamazoo Central High School. Now in her freshman year at Grand Valley State University, she is studying marketing and entrepreneurship.
Last summer, Artazijah volunteered at CIS Think Summer! to share with students her love of baking and how she started her “Julian’s Sweet Treats” business while in high school. This young entrepreneur first became connected with CIS as a third grader at Woodward School for Technology and Research. So giving back to CIS students was especially meaningful to her. “It felt good giving back,” she said. As for the students, they didn’t want her to leave that day. “That just makes me want to do it even more,” she said.
Be sure to check out the CIS Newsletter, Winter 2023, in which this Promise Scholarreflects on her freshman year of college and how CIS helped prepare her for this transition.
Alright, Artazijah, pencil out, eyes on your own paper. Good luck.
What are you currently reading?
I’m just focused on my many textbooks right now!
What is your favorite word or phrase?
You can do this. That’s what I tell myself every day.
Thinking back on your Kalamazoo Public School days, what teacher(s) most influenced you?
Oh my gosh, I had really good teachers! One teacher I will never forget is Ms. [Peggy] Holder. She was my kindergarten teacher. She always had so much planned for us and it was so fun. I remember she even let us chew gum in class. Ms. [Dana] Calloway is another amazing teacher and I had her for second grade. She was such a kind spirit. And then there was Ms. [Alyssa] Stemler who was my fourth-grade teacher. She was very sweet and whenever I needed help, I could go and talk to her. I just had so many good teachers along the way.
Has any CIS staff person in particular impacted you?
Of course! [Senior Director of Site Services] Tamiko Garrett has definitely impacted my life for the better. When I’ve needed help, she has been able to lead me in the right direction. She has a talent for putting you with the right people and she has helped with connecting me with the right people and resources.
We often say at CIS that we are all about connecting students to the right resources at the right time. Dr. Garrett really lives out the CIS mission of surrounding young people with a community of support so they can succeed in school and life, doesn’t she?
Yes, Tamiko is the perfect person for doing CIS work!
What is one of your fondest childhood memories related to treats?
Come every fall, my mom and I would bake cookies, like peanut butter cookies. Still, to this day, my grandfather wants us to come over and bake cakes, cupcakes, and all kinds of stuff! So I’ve been around all that cooking my whole life. Whenever my mom was making treats, I’d come around. I’d be there! Everything else, I would keep my distance, though, like cleaning.
What is one of your favorite sweet treats today?
Chocolate covered strawberries!
Before we go, would you be willing to share this “sweet treat” recipe with us?
Of course. Here is a recipe for Artazijah’s Chocolate-covered Strawberries.
Items you’ll need to gather:
- Strawberries, 16 ounces (clean and dry)
- Chocolate, 6 ounces (I like using the Great Value brand of chocolate chips as it stretches for large groups.)
- Bamboo sticks
- Wax paper
- Mini bowl and measuring cup
- Place strawberries in a bowl and run warm water over them and add salt over the top.
- Let them soak in the salt for 3-5 minutes.
- Once the 3-5 minutes is over, pour the water out of the bowl.
- Grab some paper towels or even a regular towel and dry the strawberries.
- Now it’s time to melt your chocolate.
- In a bowl, break up your chocolate.
- Then, after you have broken up the chocolate, you can put it in the microwave.
- Defrost for 30 seconds, take it out, and then stir.
- Now put the chocolate back in the microwave for 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds.
- Grab a bamboo stick or a toothpick and stick it through the strawberry. Pull the strawberry leaves up and dip it.
- After you are done dipping, put the strawberry on wax paper and you are done!
Behind every successful student is a caring adult. Who has been your caring adult?
My mother, Regina Miller. She is always motivating me to be better. She always tells me how much potential I have and always pushes me to reach that potential.
Thank you, Artazijah, for hanging out with us at Ask Me About My 12,000 Kids.
Tags: Alyssa Stemler, CIS, Communities In Schools of Kalamazoo, Dana Calloway, Dr. Tamiko Garrett, Grand Valley State University, Julian's Sweet Treats, Kalamazoo Central High School, Kalamazoo Public Schools, Peggy Holder