Kudos are in order. As Classic Upward Bound headed out in the wee hours of the morning for Lancaster, Pennsylvania on college tours to Franklin and Marshall, to Lebanon Valley College, and ultimately to Hershey Park’s escape room, one single event defined everyone as a group.
No, it was not the question asked of tour guides at the colleges, no, it was not the discovering what everyone’s “feel” was for the campus they were experiencing – it was their ingenuity and generosity when put under pressure, and in an escape room situation.
The seniors at times, knowing the answer to riddles, puzzles, and ciphering cryptic message, stood aside to let others give everyone their opinion, ideas, suggestions. Freshmen who came into the escape room and who felt no one wanted to listen to them or that they themselves might not have anything to contribute, found places where every single member contributed to getting out of that escape room – be it using a laser and strategically targeting onto a mirror, that revealed a message across the room, helped shift letters representing other letters to reveal YET another message, using magnets to guide a key from between walls sight unseen, to countless other on the cuff moments, the seniors, juniors, sophomores, and freshmen team in my escape room team were simply AMAZING.
If you thought the above sentence was quite along sentence and knocking your breath out, you know now how it felt to see everyone work together to use talents they did not exist to work together – pretty darn great. It was awesome to see them all come together and see HOW they did is, the style they did so, and seeing each one of them step up to the plate.
Escaping from being considered average is sometimes difficult for the average high school student to see in themselves, being anything other than average is not usually a recognized trait they see in themselves. It does wonders to point out the intelligence, guts to put one self out even if an idea might not be right, let alone just be willing to be themselves and let them know they are GREAT as what they do. I feel they do not hear enough how wonderful they are in aspects they never even realize about themselves. The hardest part is paying attention sometimes when so much is happening to recognize the great moments they do succeed, and often in things that many might consider insignificant – but are really not.
All these realizations from a very talented group of individuals that I feel, underestimate their abilities to change much around them. I saw it happening simply from one very intense, long, challenging, voyage from one state to another. But the exchanges they became involved in made a story of how much they were and are capable of in a variety of situations. Sounds cliche, but the many way Upward Bound students show they are Upward Bound was proven today – looking forward to Hershey Park tomorrow with a very talented group of students!