In 2012, three women enrolled in Leadership Athens County, Eva Bloom, the late Barbara Molinaro, and Meri Belcher, chose us to help us develop a leadership program for our teens who were aging out of Circle. They researched for a few months to find the best evidence-based curriculum available (originally designed to use of the course of a school year) and adapted it to the five- week curriculum that we use today. Students explore issues of self, and self in relationship to peers, community and the group. Thought provoking, real-life scenarios, games and assignments assist these students in their personal development. Workbooks are provided and accompany the text. All of our graduates without exception tell us how much they enjoyed and benefited form this work. Participants in the program are chosen by grade, or in a few cases, maturity. (Most are seniors ready to graduate)
Once they pass through five weeks of training, we offer them leadership positions as classroom assistants in exchange for a small stipend. Best of all, they receive a two year scholarship to Hocking College. Most of our interns return year after year, even after working as a youth leader, to assist in paid positions such as kitchen help or administration.
Not only has this program helped shape these young leaders, they in-turn, help to shape the lives of the participants in the program, as they transition from participants to role models. Our teachers will attest, they provide valuable “energy,” help and are of the greatest additions to the Circle “family.” To-date, Circle has provided fifteen young leaders this amazing opportunity.