Mayerson Workshop

16th Annual Mayerson Student Service Leadership Workshop

On Tuesday, September 17, nearly 550 high school students & teachers, 90 non-profit program representatives & volunteers gathered at University of Cincinnati for the 16th Annual Mayerson Student Service Leadership Workshop.  After a welcome by UC’s Center for Community Engagement, high school student Abby Stadtmiller (Bishop Brossart High School) shared her keynote message of finding your passion and dedicating yourself to making a difference – even among obstacles.  Troy Cornes (Dater High School) talked about his experience “like none other” as a participant in the Mayerson Summer Program.  He made a plea to those present to vote for his group’s “Big Idea Challenge” (shameless plug: vote here).

Just because we’re in the 16th year didn’t mean we couldn’t try a few new ideas: three sessions instead of two as well as a teachers-only round robin session.  Students chose to attend three of 66 breakout sessions facilitated by other students, teachers, and non-profits partners.  Interest areas of the breakout sessions included getting the most of your service experience, how to plan hunger & homeless awareness events, serving our military and veteran families, understanding needs in Tanzania, Uganda, and other areas of the world, literacy, working with youth, inclusion with people of all abilities, community building through photography, immigration, learning to dialogue, creative writing in community exploration, urban plunges, and many more!  At lunch, FUSIAN offered free samples and education on healthy eating with their “Sushi in Schools” program.

There are few opportunities in our city for young people to come together like this and break down the barriers of the river, the highways, their originating communities, and the sports’ fields. 

A mind that is stretched by new experiences can never go back to its old dimensions. – Oliver Wendell Homes, Jr. 

Many minds (and hearts) were stretched– stretched in compassion, understanding, learning, cooperation, & sharing in service to others.  Take a look at what teachers and non-profits have shared below.

THANKS!  Special thanks to UC Center for Community Engagement for hosting us!  Chris Jenkins for keeping everything in tip-top shape throughout the day!  With the largest crew ever at the Workshop, she continues to be an absolute amazing right-hand woman.  Thanks to Breta & Kelly for joining us in the morning and to Donna for attending and supporting our breakout sessions!

 I loved the idea of having the teachers presentation being a rapid fire brainstorming time period.  My students are so excited about Unified 4 Uganda – they want to tape teachers to the walls to raise money.  I told them they have to get the gears in motion so they went right back to school and scheduled meetings with our principal and maintenance departments! -  Monica Keenon, Taft High School

 So impressed with the discussion groups this year.  The students shared openly and willingly; they wanted their voices to be heard.  A young woman from Withrow shared that she felt she had a stronger voice in service and volunteerism than she does in any other outlet of her life.  As she shared that volunteerism is where she thrives, I looked around the room and saw other students nodding.  A room full of people. Finding their voices.  Thriving.  In support to others.  - Betsy Ruwe, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

 Oh Gosh I’m still going through all of this great information. Is there a way to get one of these in Dayton? There are so many organizations up here and so many schools that could benefit.  I know it would be difficult.   Just a dream – help me do it?  - Melissa Fisher, Carroll High School

 The depth of this didn’t hit home until we were sitting together at lunch.  My kids shared that other schools were outdoing us.  That edge is pushing them to take leadership roles in our service club.  And they even asked other schools for support.  Having a new school building, everything else is taking priority……This event helped us focus on what matters. – Brady, Aiken New Tech

 The projects and requests have already started to roll in;) Can't wait to discuss when we meet on Friday! - Kat Pepmeyer, ToolBank Cincinnati

 It was a great day.  I am still digesting all of the information and trying to catch up on my email!  I'm sure you can relate.  Thanks for the energy and passion you bring to this topic.  It was wonderful to be around so many like-minded people.  Teachers and students alike.  This Workshop reminds me how much I love this work.  Always changing and never something to NOT get us involved in.  - Julie Vehorn, Roger Bacon

 I had to reign in my students because they were all so excited about today's workshop.  It was fantastic and I loved the initial round-robin for teachers at the beginning of the day.  Speaking of which, I am stealing the idea.  My students are going to give 3 minute presentations about the session that impacted them the most during an upcoming senior Homeroom period.  Let me know when things quiet down and you'd like to meet.  - Diana, Bethel Tate High School

 I’m amazed by how many teachers have already asked me to talk with their students or classes.  What an energetic group of students and teachers who are changing this world.  Count me in for next year.  And the year after.  This is the kind of event that everyone should know about, but I want to keep a secret so I selfishly have space to connect with the schools! – Sarah Madrigal, IJPC

 I tell you I was so energized today and affirmed in what and why I do what I do.  The students that came were also very grateful and excited about what they learned.  I am happy that they are sophomores and will have the desire to share and continue to share over the next few years. Thanks for this opportunity. – Sr. Sandy, Seton High School

Can this be my job and do this every day?  So much energy. I need a nap.  – Larry Tibbs, NKYAB