Monday, April 9, 2007
3 Days and 32 Kids
So, my life isn't as interesting as my wife's right now (hence the limited blog entries on my behalf), but it does have its moment. The most recent one involved a 3 day trip to Illinois's capital, Springfield, for a conference. It was actually just an excuse to reward about 32 students who had volunteered the most hours during the campaigns for state and local offices. There was a stop off at an historical village that was recreated to resemble a village that Abe Lincoln would have lived in before he became famous. As the village was a living village, with actors and animals roaming around and living as they would have in the century, it was somewhat of a wake up call for them. Kind of fun to watch them go around and not understand why their cellphones didn't work (part of the point don't you think).
Anyway, we then went off and did a college tour and had breakout sessions with four state lobbyists. Then it was roommate selection and check in. Now, if you have ever tried to select roommates and make sure that one student isn't rooming with someone they go to school with, you get the constant complaint of "why can't I room with my bff?" (Best Friend Forever if you are little behind on the lingo). Not pretty, but they got over it. Now the staying up until 3 AM to make sure that there were no cross bedroom rendezvous wasn't that fun, but the sleep deprivation did have a great effect on my personality by the third day. Anyone say LOOPY!!!!!
But the students were great and four of them even led 3 breakout sessions with about 100 students/teachers per breakout session. It was great watching them lead discussions, ask questions and engage other youth. It was great for them and people were pulling them aside afterwards to ask them how many times they had done this
(uh, first time). That's right, Mikva is all about great students (or finding those diamonds).
While the three days and nights were long on face time, short on sleep, watching these students from 10 different high schools interact, dance, bowl, play games and exchange phone numbers was amazing. There isn't much opportunity for students to meet others from other parts of Chicago, so giving them this opportunity and then watching them take advantage of it was awesome.
But I'm definitely too old for this!!! Not as young as I once was. Thank goodness for a nice relaxing vacation to Armenia.