When you're heading off to college, there's obviously a lot on your mind. What your roommate will be like, how hard your classes will be, where you'll hang out on the weekends — and sex. Many people associate college with hookups and sex, but we've known for a while that people aren't having quite as much sex as we might think. But it turns out many of us aren't exactly prepared for the reality of sex on campus. According to a new study, our parents may play a pretty big part in that.
A study from Making Caring Common, a project of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, found that parents aren't having the kind of conversations with kids about sex and relationships that maybe they should be. The study found parents aren't having conversations with their kids that will prepare them for committed, lasting relationships, but they also aren't teaching their kids about consent or how a partner should treat them.
What began as a simple community service project evolved into a series of projects and programs to honor the legacy of Jesse Owens, an East Tech Alumni. The legacy of Jesse Owens, the celebrated track star of the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games, has been memorialized on the walls of the indoor track located inside of East Tech High School for years. On Thursday, February 11, 2016, DoMore4:Good kicked off a three-part series by repainting the Indoor Track with help from City Year Cleveland, The Friendly Inn Settlement and Sherwin Williams.
In recent election years there has been a focus on the ‘youth vote’. Will they turn out? What do they care about? Do candidates care about them? Millennials represent 24 percent of the voting age population. Young people represent the future; in order to become the leaders who will propel us in the right direction in thefuture, they must first become registered voters.
On February 27th and March 1st, 2016[ET1] 100 students from East Tech and Collinwood High Schools were registered to vote. DM4G began the voter registration drive by showing a short film about the history of voting (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gdlXdehi0Sg) where the students learned how important the youth vote can be. After the film Mr. Moscovitz and Mrs. Black provided the students with more in depth information about the process and importance of becoming a registered voter and exercising their right to vote.
Let’s face it, community service possibilities are everywhere but it can be hard to find an organization or association that interests young people.
On Friday, January 29, 2016 our Collinwood DoMore4:Good team gathered at The Cleveland Food Bank to sort and pack the food donations. The volunteer event was led by Collinwood’s Track & Field Coach, Mr. Lewis, who has committed to DoMore4:Good in the Collinwood neighborhood. Many of the student volunteers were Track & Field team members. DM4G’s youth volunteered along with retired physicians from Solon, Ohio.
In a world obsessed by evaluation, measurement and comparison, we must find the time and create a space to be inspired. We’re constantly being scrutinized and judged from every direction.
Looking back at all of the tests that I took throughout primary school and at college, each time my knowledge and intelligence was being evaluated; after that came job interviews and the constant fight for approval from my bosses and peers.
Evaluation isn’t always deliberate either. People judge each other in a matter of seconds, based on their physical appearance, their facial expression, their style or lack of, and the clothes they’re wearing (just to name a few things). It’s so fast and so automatic you don’t even notice it, and yet, first impressions guide us and stay with us more than you’d be comfortable acknowledging.
While we might spend a substantial amount of our time in the pursuit of acceptance, that should not be our only concern. Inspiration has a huge influence on productivity and creativity — inspired people are more intrinsically motivated, they’re no longer striving for money or resources, but for a transcendent vision.
Let's become more inspired to do greater!
To start, let's set aside time to do something new and be creative, it doesn’t matter what it is — create a piece of art, watch a biography, read a book from a new genre — just don’t keep doing the same thing. Step outside of your comfort zone! Take notes when you do find inspiration, keep a file and review your notes later, you can make use of apps such as Pinterest or Evernote; while seeking out inspiration doesn’t often work, you can use material that have inspired you in the past to give you a boost.
Lastly, let down your guard, openness to experience is an essential condition to inspiration. We’re always filtering out the things around us that don’t require our attention, try to take in everything around you even if it’s not important, gain a sense of awe and wonder about the world, let your senses explore and be curious about everything.
Let's make time to get inspired!
Be sure to stop by and tell us about your journey!
Young people agreed that you are more likely to influence their life path if you possess the following six qualities:
1. You are Supportive By far, the most important role of a mentor is to support and encourage young people, particularly as they struggle to overcome obstacles and solve problems. When young people feel down, upset with their families, or unhappy in their life situations, mentors are beside them, letting them talk about anything and reminding them of their innate value.
2. You are an Active Listener Mentors listen first and speak last. Many teens mentioned how little they feel listened to by most adults. Often, they feel inferior even when they have good ideas. But mentors are different. They always listen, even when they are not obligated to do so.
3. You Push -- Just Enough As parents can attest, most teens don’t respond well to being pushed out of their comfort zones, particularly within families. But teens really like to have high expectations set for them – both academically and personally. They appreciate when mentors push them beyond what they may have imagined they could accomplish. In fact, this is likely the reason why mentored youth from disadvantaged backgrounds are twice as likely to attend college.
4. You Have Authentic Interest in Youth as Individual Teens can tell the difference between adults who are authentically interested in them as individuals and those who are just playing a role. Mentors engage youth to understand all aspects of their lives and interests. They value young people’s ideas and honor their changing feelings and moods.
5. You Foster Self Decision-Making Good mentors don’t judge young people or impose their own beliefs on them. Instead they remind teens who they are and help them believe they have the insights to make good choices. Knowing they are not being judged helps young people think through decisions critically, sifting through the deeper values that will inform the adults they become.
6. You Lend Perspective Adult mentors provide perspective to young people from their additional years of life experience. When obstacles seem overwhelming, mentors help put those challenges in perspective. They also help young people see both sides of a situation, helping model the skills of positive skepticism.
What other qualities make good mentors for young people? How can we provide mentoring relationships to all teens? Please share your insights and experiences.
Racism, in today’s world, can be distorted and confused with the concept of discrimination; but, they are different. Racism has many faces and many colors; more than you would expect.
Racism still exists today, but it may not be in the same light as it use to be. No longer is it as open as calling someone a name or mimicking some action to mock them. Now, it exists in the form of stereotypes and assumptions. For example, one major stereotype is that people of Asian descent are “high in intellect.” This may not be the case as every person is different. If one were to explore the reasons why this may seem true, they would find out that this is due to the strict nature and high standards upheld by many Asian parents. Parents can largely impact a student, and the added pressure from the stereotype as well as the high standards could drive anyone crazy.
Yet, another issue lies with people of Hispanic descent. Mexicans are associated with “hard labor and being able to fix everything.” Anyone can be handy; there are people whose careers depend on them being able to repair or upgrade a certain fixture. The stereotype of the “Handy Mexican” stems from the origins of Mexicans. In some parts of Mexico, things are not as well-polished and regulated as they are here in the United States. For the people who come from those areas, they have to learn to fix things as they cannot always just call someone to do it for them. After enough things are broken around anyone’s house and the budget doesn’t leave room for a “handyman,” anyone would grab a screw driver just to try to get the air back on in the middle of a steaming July.
There are many other stereotypes in the world that people need to watch out for, and they might not even revolve around race. What is important is that we strive for a stronger, more tolerant, world that is binded together by communication and respect for each other’s differences.
Being a teen is never easy, but fostered teens face additional challenges when compared to their peers who are not in foster care. These challenges can be overcome, but they require a teen to have access to a team of supportive social workers, counselors, teachers and mentors. This team of caring adults must be willing to provide the long-term emotional and practical support a teen needs to make the transition from being a child to becoming an independent adult.
All teens, regardless of whether or not they have been in foster care, crave relationships with others. However, foster children who were removed from the care of their biological parents because of abuse may have trouble learning how to behave appropriately in a social setting. They may also have issues such as depression and anxiety that affect their ability to nurture strong social relationships.
Foster parents and adults who work with teens in foster care are often hesitant to discuss sexual activity, but teaching teens how to protect themselves from sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancy is vital. Foster children who have been sexually abused in the past may need guidance regarding appropriate ways to express sexual feelings. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) foster children are often subjected to bullying and thus have additional concerns that should be addressed.
Foster children without a stable home situation have trouble concentrating on their studies and need extra guidance to make sure they have a plan for supporting themselves after high school. They often think that a bachelor's degree is the only way to be successful and overlook the value of community college certificate programs or on-the-job apprenticeship training.
Learning how to manage money responsibly is an important life skill, but many foster children have never had money of their own. Working at a part-time job is hard when they are often being moved into different placements on short notice. Foster children generally do not have their own bank accounts and lack understanding of basic budgeting concepts. Those who want to go to college find it easy to get swayed into making poor decisions regarding student loans, thus setting themselves up for a lifetime of debt.
Children "age out" of foster care at 18. Many of the children aging out of the system simply do not have the resources to live successfully on their own. Covenant House, a resource for homeless youth, reports that more than one-third of foster children never finish high school because of problems faced after they age out of the system. Even those who do finish high school experience significantly higher rates of health problems, welfare dependency and incarceration. Covenant House is not an organization for former foster children, but the group reports that more than one-third of the people it serves are left homeless after aging out of foster care.
Teenage pregnancy is a serious social problem. According to the March of Dimes, about three in 10 teenage girls become pregnant before the age of 20. While many of these pregnancies end in abortion or adoption, teen girls who do decide to keep their babies face many challenges. Although less is known about teen fathers, research indicates that they, too, face problems associated with being parents.
The March of Dimes notes that pregnant teens are more likely to suffer complications during pregnancy. Their babies are more likely to experience premature birth, low birth weight or other serious health problems. These issues put babies at a greater risk of suffering newborn health problems, disability or death.
Teen parents often find that caring for a child makes it difficult for them to continue their schooling. According to StayTeen.org, more than half of teen mothers never graduate from high school, and fewer than 2 percent have graduated from college by the time they’re 30. This problem is not confined to teen mothers: as the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy notes, research suggests that teen fathers also do not receive as much education as their peers.
Lack of schooling makes it more difficult for teen mothers to find and keep well-paying jobs. According to the March of Dimes, more than 75 percent of unmarried teen mothers go on welfare within five years of having their first baby. Teen fathers also experience annual earning losses of 10 to 15 percent, according to The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy.
Pregnancy and parenting can strain the relationships between teen parents. According to the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, eight out of 10 teen fathers do not marry the mother of their first child. Becoming a teen parent also seems to have long-term implications for marriage: in comparison to people who did not have babies as teens, teen parents are significantly less likely to be married by the age of 35.
According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, depression is common among pregnant teens. Teen parents may feel guilty or anxious about the future. Teen parents are also more likely to subject their children to abuse and neglect because they feel overwhelmed by their unfamiliar, ever-demanding roles as parents.
Teen parents also face problems in regards to the success of their children. Children born to teen parents earn lower standardized test scores and are more likely to drop out of high school. According to StayTeen.org, daughters born to teen mothers are three times as likely to also become teen mothers, while sons are twice as likely to go to prison.
Nearly all teen pregnancies are unplanned. That is, teens say they did not want to get pregnant or cause a pregnancy. That alone is reason enough to care about preventing teen pregnancy. But, it is also the case that teen pregnancy is closely linked to a host of other critical social issues—poverty and income, overall child well-being, out-of-wedlock births, responsible fatherhood, health issues, education, child welfare, and other risky behavior. There are also substantial public costs associated with adolescent childbearing. Consequently, teen pregnancy should be viewed not only as a reproductive health issue, but as one that works to improve all of these measures. Simply put, if more children in this country were born to parents who are ready and able to care for them, we would see a significant reduction in a host of social problems afflicting children in the United States.
What do you think?
From time to time I revisit the question: why are young adults walking away from religion? Although the answer(s) vary from person to person, there are some general trends that I think apply in most cases.In the list below, when I refer to “we,” “I” or “me,” I’m referring to younger adults in general, and not necessarily myself.
We’ve Been Hurt: I can actually include myself in this one personally. Sometimes the hurtful act is specific, like when my youth leader threw a Bible at me for asking the wrong questions. Sometimes it’s rhetorical, either from the pulpit, in a small group study or over a meal. Sometimes it’s physical, taking the form of sexual abuse or the like. But millions claim a wound they can trace back to church that has never healed. Why? In part, because the church rarely seeks forgiveness.
Adult Life/College and Church Don’t Seem to Mix: There are the obvious things, like scheduling activities on Sunday mornings (hint: young people tend to go out on Saturday nights), but there’s more to it. In college, and before that by our parents, we’re taught to explore the world, broaden our horizons, think critically, question everything and figure out who we are as individuals. Though there’s value in this, it’s hyper-individualistic. But Church is more about community. In many ways, it represents, fairly or not, sameness, conformity and a “check your brain at the door” ethos. This stands in opposition to what the world is telling us is important at this time in life.
Perhaps an emphasis on a year of community service after high school would be a natural bridge to ameliorate some of this narcissism we’re building in to ourselves.
There’s No Natural Bridge to Church: Most teenagers leave home, either for college, to travel, work or whatever after high school. With the bad economy, this number is fewer, but it’s a general trend. But the existing model of church still depends on the assumption that communities are relatively static, and that the church is at the center of that community. Not so anymore. When I went to college, I was contacted by fraternities, campus activity groups and credit card companies, but not one church.
We’re Distracted: It’s not that we don’t care; we have so many things competing for our limited time and attention that the passive things that don’t offer an immediate “interrupt” get relegated to the “later” pile. And we rarely ever get to the “later” pile, which leads me to the next point…
We’re Skeptical: We’re exposed to more ad impressions in a month today than any other previous generation experienced in a lifetime. I see more than a dozen marketing messages. If I turn on the TV, they’re there. Pick up my phone, they’re there. Online…you get the point. So whereas generations before us expended energy seeking information out, now it comes at us in such overwhelming volumes that we spend at least the same amount of energy filtering things out.
We’re Exhausted: I was lumped in as pat of the Generation X group, also known as the Slacker Generation. This implied, of course, that we were lazy and unmotivated. But consider how many of us go to college, compared to generations before us. And consider that the baseline standard for family economics requires a two-income revenue stream to live in any level of the middle class. Debt and credit are givens, and working full-time while also trying to maintain a marriage, raise kids, have friends and – God forbid – have some time left for ourselves leaves us with less than nothing. We’re always running a deficit. So when you ask me to set aside more time and more money for church, you’re trying to tap already empty reserves.
I Don’t Get It: Young adults today are the most un-churched generation in a long time. In many cases, it’s not that we’re walking away from church; we never went in. From what I can tell from the outside, there’s not much relevance to my life in there, and I’m not about to take the risk of walking through the door to find out otherwise.
I’ve tried to offer insight into what might be done about a few of these issues as I went, but I invite you also to sit with the tension of not having the answers. Better yet, seek some young adults out, ask them if they relate to these. And see if they have ideas about what you (maybe not even “church” but you) can do to help relieve some of the challenges.
Depression among teens is a growing phenomenon that is beginning to spiral out of control. Access to social media such as facebook and twitter, and many reality T.V. shows, go a long way to adding to this problem. The teenage years are very trying times for many teens. If teens can realize some of the things that cause depression, they may be better able to handle these situations when they occur.
Many teens suffer from depression because of the way they look or how they live their lives. The images portrayed on television, in magazines and on the internet give a distorted view of reality. It’s important to understand that normal, average teenagers, or people of any age, don’t look like, act like and live like what is shown in the media. Teens are given a false sense of reality about how life and people really are. If you are suffering from depression because you feel like you aren’t pretty enough, smart enough or have money, understand that you are not alone.
Other teens may suffer from depression as a result of a difficult breakup with a boyfriend or girlfriend. In this case, it’s important for teens to realize that dating has its ups and downs. Most people don’t end up marrying the people that they dated in high school. Before suffering from depression over a break up, teens need to rebuild their self confidence and tell themselves that they are very deserving of someone that will care about and respect them.
Some teens suffer from depression as a result of a divorce. The causes of parents divorcing each other is not the fault of the teen child. Even though a teen’s parents may no longer love each other, this does not mean that they do not love their children any less.
Many teens experience depression and don’t know how to handle it other than cutting themselves. Friends and family should immediately recognize the sign of a cutter and get them help right away.
Borderline syndrom: The results of cutting yourself
Many teenagers go through very confusing times during their adolescent years, and while many parents may see their teenagers going through normal, simple problems, teens may see these problems differently. The stress endured by teens could lead to thoughts of suicide. Self mutilation or being a borderline / cutter is one of the signs that suicide could be imminent for a depressed teen. Action should be taken immediately with a borderline / cutter so that they don’t harm themselves.
Immediate action is needed with a borderline / cutter because their mind is not in a rational state. They have already started cutting themselves, and if gone unnoticed, suicide could be the next step. A professional counselor or therapist can determine whether or not the teen is suffering from severe long term depression or suffering from a short term crises where they simply don’t have the skills to cope. Medication and/or coping skills could be all a teen needs to help them through their tough times.
There are many reasons why teens may want to cut themselves. One reason is that it gives them power and control over something. Cutting themselves is one thing teens can control when they feel out of control with the rest of their lives. It could also be a cry for help or for getting attention, and they feel there is no other way to ask.
Friends and family can help a borderline / cutter by first recognizing the signs of a borderline / cutter. If there are noticeable wounds on the body, then this could be a sign of a problem. If the borderline / cutter doesn’t attempt to conceal or hide these wounds, then this could be a cry for help. Friends and family should then take action immediately when seeing any signs of self mutilation by seeking professional help for the troubled teen.
Whatever the reasons, a borderline / cutter is not in a rationale state of mind, and friends and family should be ready to help before it goes too far.
The fear of failure is prevalent among teens. The adolescent years are already confusing enough, and many teens experience a very real fear of being rejected by their peers for attempting to take on daunting tasks and failing at them. This fear of failure has caused many teens to quit striving for the things they want to achieve in life, instead they would rather blend into the crowd.
Many teens must learn to overcome their fear of failure because many of life’s lessons are learned from failing. Michael Jordan, one of the best basketball players of all time, was cut from his high school basketball team the first time he tried out. Instead of giving into his fear of failure, he continued to practice harder than he had ever done. Needless to say, he tried out for the team again, and this time he made it, and the rest is history.
Albert Einstein, considered one of the smartest people in the world, did not learn how to read until he was the age of seven. If he did not overcome his fear of failure, he would not have gone on to do some of the great things he is known for, including winning the Nobel Peace Prize.
Teens must be willing to fail in order to become someone or do something great. The best advice to give to teenagers with a fear of failure is that time will heal all wounds. Many years from now their peers may not even remember the thing that they attempted and failed.
Grief is a normal human response to the loss of a parent and is a way of healing from the pain of the loss – but you need to accept the pain and not try to cover it up before the healing can start.
Grief is unique. Everyone experiences it in different ways. These phases can combine with each other in different ways and some can last for weeks, months, or even years; but they’re all normal parts of experiencing grief.