Young Men Inspired To Set Future Goals

Charleston, S.C.
USA

In the early part of 2014, Burke High School in Charleston, S.C. hosted a special day of workshops for 500 students from Burke along with nearby middle and high schools. The program was designed to engage students in goal setting, reading, writing and self-confidence.

Writers, educators and business professionals arrived at the high school, eager to participate in the expansion of receptive young minds. Maurice Cannon, Principal of Burke High School, reminded students at the opening morning program to “take advantage of this unique opportunity to benefit from learning and interacting with a varied group of individuals that understand your background and have stories similar to yours.”

Devlon Paris was invited to present the Aim to Inspire workshop to a group of 26 young men attending the special day. The workshop was presented by Tim O. and fused his creative writing background and business experience to paint a practical and engaging presentation.

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AIM TO INSPIRE WORKSHOP

Aim to Inspire was customized to utilize the local culture and interests of the attending students. The workshop began by having each young gentleman think about the type of life he would like to live and the person he would like to become.

This section (and each subsequent section) of the workshop featured a writing exercise. For the first time in life, some of the young men put on paper a goal they desire to achieve.

The workshop built upon this exercise by discussing practical ways to set achievable goals, overcome fear of failure, manage obstacles, the value of community service and the need to support fellow gentlemen in the pursuit of greatness.

“The young men were respectful, engaged and shared their personal thoughts regarding what they desire for their future and the personal obstacles they fear may stop them from achieving their potential,” noted Tim O. “I’ve always hated labels used such as ‘at risk’ or other terms. I think that each student has the potential to be great when engaged in a manner that caters to their strengths.”

Burke High School Principal, Maurice Cannon, speaking to students as they return from their various workshops. Providing encouraging words regarding the value of what they learned until all students arrive in the auditorium.

Burke High School Principal, Maurice Cannon, speaking to students as they return from their various workshops. Providing encouraging words regarding the value of what they learned until all students arrive in the auditorium.

SHARING LESSONS LEARNED

The special day culminated with students sharing valuable lessons learned from their respective workshops with the larger audience of 500 students. Four of the young gentlemen that attended the #WellSuited Aim to Inspire workshop were among those who volunteered to share what they learned.

“To my surprise,” commented Tim O., “one of the young gentlemen that did not seem as engaged as the other attendees stood before the audience and proceeded to tell them he learned that ‘a dream is a goal without legs. In order to achieve my dreams, I need to set specific goals that start with taking advantage of my education.’ It just goes to show that the message is heard and you never realize what words will stick. This is why it is so important for the message to be spoken.”