First Day! (Sort of…) – Terri L.

Hello World!!!  How are you doing?  Haven’t talked for a while, huh?

I can’t believe that we’ve been in Oakland for over a week!!  We had orientation the first day and just moved into our houses on Wenesday.  Yesterday was technically the first day at our intern sites, but the College Track orientation was only an hour long.  So, I think today was really the first day of “work” (as everybody else calls it).

For the first day, we were going to a ropes course for the first day/field trip.  College Track goes on field trips every Friday.  Today was also the first day that the kids got to come and interact with staff.  It was a bit hectic.  The transportation wasn’t quite worked out (by no fault of the College Track staff, they did wonderfully at figuring out alternative ways to transport the students) and, although we (Sarah, Zach, and I) arrived around 7:30, we didn’t leave the Oakland site until after 11.

It being the first day with the students, it was super fun getting to know them.  When we waited in the Oakland office, Sarah kept making conversations with others and I just followed and tagged along.  I felt a little like a lost puppy. 😛  We got into a really cool conversation about cultural identity.  Sometimes I forget how old the students are.  I think the initial confusion is due to my change in sites, which was from teaching a K-8 summer program to now working at College Track which serves students from 9th grade to college graduation (16th grade – ish).  However, it’s also partly due to how much some of these kids know.

Why is it that when our culture started to value children and give them rights, that our value of their opinions didn’t seem to increase all that much?  And when did we stop taking teenagers seriously?  As Christians, how have we forgotten that some of our most revered people were teenagers?  Mary, mother of Jesus, David, and other people that I have now forgotten 😛 (Oh the woes of not having technology 😛 )

These kids have HUGE potential.  I met a boy who seemed to be doing so many things!  He was part of a genius club (genius – he said it so casually I almost missed it), a program helping youth find jobs, college track, and some other program that I forgot (seems I forgetting a lot right now).  He is one awesome, motivated kid – even though he tries not to show it.  If someone learns how to help him focus his potential, he’ll be a really good leader one day.

So, I guess the things I’m thinking about today are the value of our youth and how our culture treats them (among other things that came up throughout the day as well as ALL the stuff I learned last week.)  Good topic, yeah?

Okay, it’s just past midnight and I’ve been up since before 6, so I’m calling it a night.  Good night big technological world that I haven’t really interacted with for a while!  Sleep tight, God bless, and enjoy your weekend!

Love, Terri

PS. We took a picture at an outside dance event tonight.  I’ll see if I can get the picture up on Sunday, so you can see the whole BayUp13 team (minus Galvin who is at a national step competition in Texas – send him good vibes!)

PPS.  If you made it through the entire post, THANKS for reading!  I tend to ramble on blog posts 😉

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