Pando Students To Receive Special Honors

For 44 PandoKids, May 4th will be a day to remember. The 28th annual STAR awards will take place at the Crown Uptown Theatre from 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM. Students will experience a once-in-a-lifetime awards ceremony with family, friends, school staff, and Pando supporters where they are the stars of the show, letting their achievements shine.

At The Pando Initiative, we're helping students thrive! When students are connected through relationships they build strength, vitality, and the courage to take initiative to succeed. We measure success by improving attendance, behavior, and academic performance. The STAR awards aim to acknowledge and honor those Pando students who have shown exceptional growth in the 2022-23 school year. Students are nominated by Student Support Advocates for various reasons; improved grades, increased school attendance, participation, even personal growth. 

You can be a part of this experience by becoming a sponsor or attending the event. Several different levels of sponsorship are available. To sponsor, or learn how you can help send two Pando students to the STAR Awards, contact Angela Kessler at  Tickets go on sale April 1, 2023. 



Pando Receives Generous Donation Of Formal Wear

The Pando Initiative has received a generous donation of dresses and suits for high school students in the Wichita area, courtesy of In the Bag Cleaners.

The Pando programs at Wichita North High School, Wichita West High School, and Derby High School are coordinating the efforts to distribute formal wear not only at their schools, but other high schools in the metro area. In The Bag Cleaners will also be providing dry-cleaning vouchers for students.

Prom is a special experience for students, but often times can be costly,” said Angela Kessler, Pando Initiative Director of Development. “We are excited about this partnership with In The Bag Cleaners to provide formal wear so that students can attend and enjoy this moment.”

Pando is proud to provide not only formal wear, but general clothing items to students at all 22 schools that Pando serves through their “clothing closets”. Many students at these schools frequent this resource for everyday wear and other circumstances.


Meet Our Staff

Kenya McConico

Program Director

Kenya McConico, Program Director, has been with Pando since July 2013. She began as a Student Support Advocate (back then known as Case Manager) at Derby High School. Kenya holds a Masters in Gerontology from Wichita State University.

Kenya is married with 3 children; Natalie, 19, Nicole, 16, and Joseph, 13. They have one dog, Tony. She enjoys spending her free time with her family and friends, doing a bit of reading, watching sports documentaries and reality tv. She occasionally makes it to the gym.

She is a member of Advance Kansas, where she works with other local leaders to break down barriers to economic and social progress for students  like those who participate in Pando.

"Something I always enjoy is seeing students I have worked with, whether that is at school or out in the community. It makes me so happy when a student comes up and asks if I remember them and I say 'of course!' It is just so great to know that I am someone that hopefully made a difference and that kids remember me years later."

-Kenya McConico, Program Director


Volunteer at

Reality U


Reality U™ is a one-day financial literacy simulation that travels throughout the state. Students imagine their life as a 26-year-old and are given a monthly income, credit score, and family situation based on a pre-event questionnaire and their current GPA and school attendance record. Then they visit 12 volunteer-staffed booths to experience monthly expenses and financial decisions. Some of these major life decisions include housing, transportation, utilities, insurance, and daycare expenses. As student balance their monthly incomes and expenses, some find themselves in the negative and visit the “Help, I need more money!” booth to obtain a second job. Each booth at a Reality U™ event is staffed by two or three volunteers who help guide and educate students on making informed and smart decisions.

Volunteering with Reality U™ is easy, and there are no special skills or training required. Choose to volunteer at one 75-minute session, or for the whole day at a local school. You can even gather coworkers or friends to join you! Several upcoming dates still need volunteers. Click the button to be added to our volunteer list, and we will notify you of upcoming events!


Volunteering with Reality U™ is easy:

  • One-time opportunities available

  • 75-minute sessions

  • No training needed!



28th Annual STAR Awards

Thursday, May 4, 2023

Crown Uptown Theatre

11:30 AM - 12:30 PM

Sponsorships now available. Please contact Angela Kessler for more details


Cooking for a Cause 2023

Mark your calendars for Wichita's premiere tasting event! 

Saturday, November 4, 2023

Wichita Scottish Rite - Temple Live


Mission: Pando connects with students to help them engage and thrive in education and their future.

Programs: We partner with schools and community to provide students with mentoring, life skills, and basic needs through  PandoKids™ and Reality U™.


-Contact us-
412 S Main  | Wichita, Kansas 67202


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