Multi-generational workshop brought area high school students to Empower U

Several school districts across St. Joseph and Doniphan County, KS took part in the session.

Posted: Sep 17, 2019 6:33 PM
Updated: Sep 17, 2019 6:43 PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Students from schools across the area took part in a multigenerational collaborative work session with staff Tuesday at Empower U.

After a quick introduction, the group got to work discovering the many talents of their peers. 

The main instructor of the session said it brings students and adult leaders together from the region to impact positive change.

"We really believe in experiential learning," Devran Brower director of program operations, Heartland Foundation. 

Students who took part said it’s a break from the ordinary, getting them out of the textbook routine.

"Honestly, its a really good experience." Caleb Kendall, Riverside High School Student said. "It seems a little out of the box and I enjoy thinking that sort of way."

Adults said the session is an opportunity to take cues from the younger generation to expand their thinking.

"We can gain their energy, enthusiasm and new ideas," Nicki Carlson athletic director at St. Joseph Christian School said. "It helps you to not stay in the same box either."

Instructors said the learning experience for both generations is impactful because both groups can learn from each other, adding the exercises showcase what each one has to contribute.

The workshop also provided the opportunity for each participant to reflect on how they learn, and discover how they best take in information. 

"Teaching people the simple assessment we do helps us realize we don’t all learn the same," Brower said. 

The adults who took part in the session said realizing these aspects of self and others puts then in a better place to be productive. 

They say it can have long-lasting effects on the younger generation. 

"It empowers these students to see a different aspect of who they are and how they can make a difference," Carlson said. "They can be the change we need."

Students from the St. Joseph School District as well as Bishop LeBlond, St. Joseph Christian School, Riverside High School and Troy High School all took part in the multigenerational work session. 

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