Crossroads Youth Leadership Program 2020
The crew I chose was STELLAR. I knew I had recruited well. Sharon Stadul, DTM and I have worked together on our club's Youth Leadership Programs since 2015, helping youth participants learn Toastmasters' principles. I knew the alumni loved MaryK Deep, PM4 when she taught WITH US for the past two years. Dawn Neidetski, IP2 would represent Crossroads live and in-person as the President V.I.P. and example of the Toastmaster position!
In April, the 2020 Youth Leadership Program rev-d up! By ZOOMING INTO LEADERSHIP, the planning committee began to DREAM!
Just a few meetings, showed it was going to be an EASY year. We needed to limit the number of participants to 16 and even had to simplify the curriculum because of circumstances of COVID-19!
I have zoomed on a roller coaster, I have zoomed on a freeway, but until COVID-19, I had not yet ZOOMED on a computer!
And I learned fast - because that’s where YLP ended up! It was a thrilling “ADVENTURE” - Zooming thru the internet sky - from a clear runway called… Toastmasters!
And it wasn’t such a bad flight after all. - 15 experienced YLP participants from Grades 7-10 joined us.
THE FIRST DAY, we anxiously watched the youth participants walk thru the JETWAY - - with a LOGBOOK in their hand and smile on their face. They took their ZOOM seat and prepared to SOAR into another year of exciting altitudes! The sky was the limit!!
We told them we wanted them to push harder than ever this year - creating the type of speeches that were more carefully worded than before - even speeches that were competitive!
There were four weeks of flight - all the while from the cockpit - we FUELED them with our SUPPORT -- and Toastmasters WISDOM!
WITH full throttle, as we hoped, their speedometers steadily ACCELERATED!
They kept their eyes on the horizon - even though there were a few air pockets and bumps along the way. But as they ZOOMED the turbulence NEVER grounded them!
With instructions from the flight deck – they followed our Toastmasters maps and really pumped their engines during the flight.
From the very TAKE OFF, we treated the youth participants as if they were FIRST CLASS passengers – tuning them up with all of our CONSTRUCTIVE EVALUATIONS.
Three things happened during the flight:
1. The airways gusted with hard work.
2. The participant's tailwind kept them right on schedule - from a steady flow of …courage.
3. They started imagining future meaningful itineraries.
THEN... the perfect landing happened. The GRAND Showcase, July 25 at 1:30pm!
18 dignitaries graced us from both District 10 and the community. We sent typed programs that included a letter from Brunswick Mayor Ron Falconi and our District 10 Director Alicia Smith-Kirk, DTM!
The spectacular was emceed by 14 year old Shivam Pandya...leading beyond his years. One by one, he introduced the fruit of this summer - speeches, panels and TableTopics!
My speech addressed a message to the GROUND CREW - the Parents! I paid tribute to them!! There was roaring talent in the 15 seats that they reserved! The youth participants were already built from their own parent’s FLIGHT MANUALS at home…Then they were successfully launched to us with Responsibility and Integrity!
We reminded them - Each summer we’ll continue to pilot your crews until you’re ready to launch them to their final destinations!
After my speech, we held a full certificated graduation and an award ceremony for the first time online!.
As WE dismissed everyone, we PILOTS affectionately look back at the WHITE STREAK CONTRAILS - to see just how far our jets have flown.
For we know the skies are filled with STARS of possibilities for these youth participants. My own father once told ME “No star is TOO HIGH to reach - if you’re willing to work hard for it.” And these youth participants did.
What a ride this WAS - and it isn’t over yet!!
We will send them off once more, to grab their OVER-FILLED CARRY-ONS, and continue changing the world - by ZOOMing into Leadership next year too!
If you are interested in learning more about how you can help our youth Zoom into leadership through YLP, please contact me at email@example.com.