As the school year winds to a close, I’d like to dedicate the next couple of posts to the students and educators who understand that school is a place to grow in wisdom as well as knowledge, in love as well as the so-called Three R’s. They understand that school isn’t just a place to learn how to be in the world, but it’s a place to learn how to change it for the better.
Connor Tinen is one of those students. He’s just finishing his junior year at Eureka High School in Eureka, MO. In a recent letter to his principal, Jim Wipke, he asks for some help in beginning his own Greater Than Yourself endeavor. Jim was kind enough to share this letter with me (with Conner’s permission, of course), and I offered to expand the request beyond the Conner-Wipke connection by sharing this letter with you.
You now have the opportunity to encourage this remarkable young man to grow as a leader and as a human being; you can give him a great gift–the gift of your experience. Here’s what to do:
- Read the letter, and then
- Offer your answers to his questions (in bold) in the comment section.
- Pass this post along to others and ask them to do the same
Can you think of a better way to end the school year?
Dear Dr. Wipke,
My name is Connor Tinen and I am a junior at Eureka High School.
I have been elected Vice President of Eureka’s chapter of NHS (National Honor Society) for the 2011-2012 school year, a position I greatly value and look forward to serving in. As part of our training this year Dr. McIlwee is requiring all officers to read Greater Than Yourself by Steve Farber. After finishing the book I was extremely interested in the philosophy and saw a huge power in it; however, I was unsure how exactly it should manifest itself in my life. So I searched for more resources; listening to an online file about selecting a GTY project, and watching a video about the role Mr. Farber thinks Greater Than Yourself should play in schools.
However, I still am slightly unsure of how this should look due to the inherent differences between the working world and the student world.
My biggest question is what should a GTY project look like for me, a high school student? What shape do you think this relationship should take? This includes, perhaps my biggest question, who I should ask to be my GTY partner, and how precisely I should help them? The question seems like it should have an obvious answer, but I am struggling to pinpoint a worthy and hungry person to be my GTY “recipient.”
…I hope that you might have some answers.