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Zeiler attends HOBY leadership seminar PDF Print E-mail
Written by Holyoke Enterprise   

HHS student Jordan Zeiler recently attended the Hugh O’Brian Youth (HOBY) Leadership Seminar, June 11-13 at Colorado School of Mines in Golden.

High school sophomores from around the state were selected for the seminar, which focuses on leadership and community service. A number of distinguished leaders in business, government and education were present as keynote speakers.

Among the speakers, Zeiler said she was particularly influenced by one who spoke on an HIV/AIDS camp. It made Zeiler really think about the impact she can have, even as a single person. She also enjoyed an interactive forum on stereotypes, where students discussed the problems with negative stereotyping. Students were challenged to list stereotypes of various groups. The lists were then placed on a wall that was eventually torn down.

In addition to listening to speakers, students were involved in a community service project, in which they cleaned up trash along the side of the street.

“HOBY really changed my life,” Zeiler commented. Before attending the seminar, she never would have thought about doing so much community service. Now that she has returned, however, she has set a goal to put in 100 hours of community service in the next year.

Despite having been home for only a couple weeks, Zeiler has already begun working toward that goal. She is currently volunteering at the nursing home and hopes to arrange to volunteer at the hospital in the future.

Fulfilling 100 hours of service is one of the requirements for HOBY participants to return in a year as a junior staff member. Zeiler intends to complete the community service and apply for a junior staff position at next year’s seminar.

When bringing students to HOBY, the seminar aims to teach them about critical issues, as well as broaden their understanding of their leadership potential and quest for self-development. Zeiler parted saying that she has learned helping out even a little bit can make a big difference.