Friday, May 30, 2014

Blindfolds, rock walls, some questionable poison ivy, & ROCKSTARS!

The transition from high school to college can often be a confusing journey. Remembering deadlines, turning in all required documents, creating a class schedule - it can all seem overwhelming at times. 

However, tnAchieves students have a certain advantage. High school counselors, and college personnel, and tnAchieves staff and mentors all share a mission of helping students navigate this process. 

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Another resource? tnAchieves Ambassadors! tnAchieves Ambassadors are scholarship recipients who represent the program through leadership, team building, and mentoring.
 
Earlier this month, tnAchieves hosted several "kick-off" events for our newest Ambassadors. The first group got to experience the Marvyille College Mountain Challenge. Students explored the woods in teams with other Ambassadors from their college. 


They were tasked with completing activities that tested their patience and creativity - such as the "human seesaw," the "spider web," and the WALL.



The most successful groups were those who worked as a team. Check out this rather humorous video of one group attempting a "balancing act" - aka Human Seesaw!
 
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One student said she enjoyed the Mountain Challenge because "we were forced out of our groups and had to get to know complete strangers and learn along the way."

Another group came to Ijams Nature Center in Knoxville, TN for a clean-up event. These students volunteered to sift through rotten wood, an old barn, and some questionable poison ivy. Ijams staff members nicknamed these students the "Special Ops of tnAchieves!"






Shelby County Ambassadors spent the day with Team BRIDGES in Memphis, TN. BRIDGES "unites and inspires diverse young people to become confident and courageous young leaders committed to community transformation." Students learned more about how to be a leader on campus and worked together to complete some rather difficult tasks, including lifting each other to the top of the Memphis Grizzlies Climbing Wall. 

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell kicked off the event with some encouraging words!




Congratulations to the 189 ROCKSTAR students serving as 2014 tnAchieves Ambassadors. These students will continue to assist tnAchieves with special events, including attending and giving advice to new college freshmen during this summer's New Student Orientations. We are so proud of you!

View more photos from Ambassador Retreats here.