Become your Message

This week, City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley is going to focus on something very important: our City Year community. Our students are on “ski week” which gives us the perfect opportunity to build team, celebrate our accomplishments and get ourselves energized for the second half of our service year. Each day we will be posting updates on how Advanced Training Academy (ATA) is going. Today, corps member Terese Mcwilliams explains what exactly ATA is.

The theme of ATA this year is PITW #197:  Become your Message. This PITW, in more or less words, sums up the reason why many of us joined City Year. To simply have had a message was not enough; we wanted to take action in support of what we believe. We wanted to become our message.Our initial reasons for dedicating a year to service can be easily overshadowed once we get into the routine of tutoring students, creating lesson plans and doing physical service.

The goal of ATA is to remind the corps that everyday is an opportunity to become, and show others how to become, their message.

While planning ATA, I have had the chance to embody my personal mission. At the start of the year I decided that one of my goals was to help others, specifically my students, realize their potential for greatness. Everyday I encourage my students to do their best and to dream big; now I get to do the same thing for the corps.

I have had the chance to plan activities that will allow the corps to reflect on their City Year so far and to get some encouragement for the great things that lie ahead. Some of the activities require us to write and reflect on our personal messgaes. Other activities give corps members the chance to bond with their teammates. One activity even provides the corps with the chance to see the important messages that their students have learned.

In planning for ATA, I have learned that in past years it has been both a motivational and exciting week. I have yet to experience it myself, but I am excited to have the chance to rejuvenate the corps after six months of hard work. Planning this years ATA has been a lot of worthwhile work and I hope that every corps member leaves feeling empowered, appreciated and ready to become their message in the last four months of our City Year.

Terese Mcwilliams, Corps Member CYSJ

If you want to stay up to date on City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley’s ATA, follow @CityYearSanJose and watch out for the hashtag #cysjATA2011. Of course, check back here for daily updates!

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