December 16, 2009

Head Start Carolers Bring Holiday Cheer to UAMS

UAMS Chancellor Dan Rahn is surrounded by a herd of Head Start reindeer.

UAMS Chancellor Dan Rahn is surrounded by
a herd of Head Start reindeer.
College of Medicine Dean Debbie Fiser is given a pair of antlers.

College of Medicine Dean Debra H. Fiser is given a pair of antlers.
Dr. Rahn shares a moment with an inquisitive Head Start caroler.

Dr. Rahn shares a moment with an inquisitive Head Start caroler.

Dec. 16, 2009 | With reindeer antlers jingling, a group of 3-year-olds from the Metropolitan Head Start site in Little Rock gathered outside UAMS Chancellor Dan Rahn’s office this week.

“Oh my gosh! It’s an entire herd!” said a surprised Rahn as the tiny carolers broke into holiday favorites like “Jingle Bells” and “We Wish You A Merry Christmas.”

Donning a pair of antlers himself, Rahn nodded and smiled as the reindeer sang several more Christmas tunes while a crowd of UAMS employees gathered. Rahn exchanged antlers and hugs with the tots as they passed out candy canes to onlookers before heading down the hallway to the College of Medicine.

“Oh, my! That’s the cutest group of reindeer I’ve ever seen,” said Debra H. Fiser, M.D., dean of the College of Medicine. “What a nice surprise.”

Following an encore of Christmas favorites, the kids presented Fiser with a big card and broke into an impromptu singing of “Happy Birthday” to the dean, who was coincidentally celebrating a birthday. The group was assisted by several Head Start staff members, including Dee McLemore, education coordinator; Krista Huddleston, education technology resource specialist; and Judy Jackson, transportation coordinator.

The caroling has become a nine-year tradition.

UAMS runs the Head Start-Early Head Start program in Pulaski County under director Mary Kaye McKinney. The 22 locations serve 1,090 students from low-income homes. Head Start offers health, education and social services to its students.