|Pathways to Success for Youth Project|
pathways to success for youth blog
by Trisha Jacobson
Wow! It's amazing how fast time goes by when you're doing what you love to do! The Pathways to Success for Youth Project has gathered some momentum and is moving forward towards our goal to bring the Success Principles to young people across the country (and to the adults who like to hang around with young people)! And while grant applications and funding possibilities were pending, my focus went to my winter gig.
In the winter, I take a break from my work in classrooms and bring my passion to the outdoors and to the mountains. I love to ski and I love to share my passion with as many people as I can! Two years ago, I became the director of the ski and snowboard school at a small NH family resort. I oversee a staff of just shy of 100 coaches, instructors and staff who are almost as passionate about sliding on snow as I am. Mikayla, the PTSY Team Leader, runs our children's ski program. It's been so fun for us to facilitate team building, professional development, customer service initiatives and change strategies using the Success Principles as the foundation of all we do. To that end, we have come to believe, without a doubt, that Jack's Success Principles work is powerful and much needed in settings that go well beyond the training room and even youth classrooms!
The majority of my staff is 25 or younger. I get lots of feedback telling me that this is the best job they've ever had and they love how they feel like a valuable part of a great team. The adults on staff, many of whom have been on staff for over 10 years, have been watching to see how my style was going to work. I conducted end of the season feedback sessions with all the staff. I asked one simple question ... a question that Jack suggests to get honest, open feedback.
"On a scale of 1-10, with 1 being the worst and 10 being the best, how would you rate your experience at ski school this year?" If they didn't rank it a 10, I asked a followup question. "What would make it a 10?"
The responses were amazing ... from both young and "more mature" staff alike. The feedback was clear and actionable and fully supports my desire for continuous improvement in the product we put out on the hill and the staff who are providing our products to our guests. The word I heard my staff use the most to describe their experience was "connection".
I've heard the word "connection" or the phrase "lack of connection" or "disconnection" alot lately in the work I do with young people in my community. I've been involved in lots of professional and community conversations around the heroin epidemic that many communities around the country are facing. In addition to working with substance use and abuse, I also work with teens around healthy relationships, sexualty, bullying, academic performance, mental illness, family issues. The list goes on and on. One thing has become crystal clear to me. Connection, or rather a lack of connection, is deep down at the core of every issue. And connection seems to be something we need to pay more attention to when we're looking to address any of our social issues.
So as I shift my focus off snow and back into my school and community work, I am even more passionate than ever about the power of this work, the scope of possiblities and the potential of the Pathways to Success for Youth Project.
Stay tuned for an update on new funding support and an exciting school-based initiative the Pathways Team is working on for September! I am soooooo excited!
In the meantime, we're gearing up our fund raising initiatives to support our new Pathways to Success for Youth Team members to further expand our capacity to bring this work where it needs to go! Click here to see how you can help us get where we're going!
Pathways to Success for Youth Team
Patty Aubery, Trisha Jacobson, Jack Canfield, Mikayla Cerney
Marissa Maitland, Molly Mullins, Marianna Robinson, Grace Remillard, Jack Canfield, Trish Jacobson, Mikayla Cerney, Meg Perrin & Faith Jacobson
Jackie DiFonzo, Olivia Belanger, Kelly Sharp, Marianna Robinson, Chance Bousquet, Meg Perrin, Lea Thelemarck being interviewed by Patty Aubery, President of The Canfield Training Group
Team members not shown: Nichole Tomacelli, Jen Collard, Whitney Pray, Drea Kasianchuk, Chelsea Latham