My name Is Andy Le and I am a first generation college graduate born and raised in the heart of the Silicon Valley. I chose to serve with City Year to directly impact adolescents and give back to the community that made school an outlet that satisfied my hunger for knowledge and opportunities. With my firsthand experience, I hope to empower students to show them that they can achieve their goals despite any hardships.
On the very first day of my service year, I, along with 67 other corps members, renovated Clyde Arbuckle Elementary School’s campus by repainting the playgrounds and creating new designs on the blacktop to uplift school spirit just in time for the Summer Leadership Academy on Monday, August 6, 2012.
At Summer Leadership Academy students from second to eighth grade were welcomed eagerly by City Year corps members. The school day began with morning rally which consisted of songs and games to get students’ minds active. After rally, students went to their classrooms to prepare for the new academic year by learning fundamentals such as math, literacy, and science. In between these subjects, students had physical education, recess, and interpersonal activities like peace builders, which focused on making students mindful of their behavior and how to build positive relationships.
I saw a change in my students’ demeanor and receptiveness to school through City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley’s Summer Leadership Academy 2012. My students were always excited and engaged with the content they were learning. Summer Leadership Academy created a positive association with school and education. My students became comfortable talking about their dreams and aspirations for college and future professions. I saw all of our students grow.
At the end of City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley’s Summer Leadership Academy 2012, we took our students on an exciting field trip to the Tech Museum. We led students through the Tech Museum to celebrate the end of Summer Leadership Academy and went through interactive exhibits including a music maker that allowed students to control the tempo and beat by rotating a cube, and a bike that generated energy for household items such as fans and lights. We even got to experience the iMax theater, which was amazing because it was a first for almost all of our students.
Overall, Summer Leadership Academy was an experience that I hold close to my heart to push me forward to get to know more students and help them achieve beyond minimum standards. I hope that through Summer Leadership Academy, I have made a long and lasting impression on my students to fuel their hunger for knowledge to accomplish all the goals they set forth without question and doubt.
-Andy Le, Corps Member CYSJ