I am a student at Utah State University's Salt Lake Center. As I'm older, I am what some call a nontraditional student. An assignment in one of my classes led me to the Utah PTA web page. Browsing their site brought back memories of days spent in my children's classrooms and of serving as various commissioners for the local and district PTA boards. During my service, I realized the impact that each one of us can have on a young person, and that each one of us is capable of making a difference in their life.
When the opportunity for me to attend school materialized, I thought of how much I enjoyed those young people and taking part in guiding them to obtain knowledge and reach their goals. I then recalled my school days and the lack of guidance I received in the home as well as school concerning my future goals. As a result, I have chosen to seek a degree in school guidance counseling. I feel I can utilize my education and life experiences to help give hope and encouragement to young people who may not think they have much of a future. It is up to us as adults to guide and lead children into successful and bright futures, even if it is one child, one hour at a time.
I have to say that without my involvement in the PTA many years earlier, I may not have realized the impact each one of us can make in a child's life: whether it is as a parent, teacher, or volunteer. I would like to take this opportunity to welcome all of your readers to reach out and make a difference in the life of a young person. Whether you think you have anything to offer or not, there is a child who needs what you have. I encourage all of you to go to a school near you and see what you can do to help guide a child's future. It does not take a huge commitment. You can start with one hour a week. It can be as simple as reading a story or helping repair playground equipment. I am speaking to all of us, regardless of whether we have a child in the school or not. We are all responsible for the children who will be responsible for our future. Trust me, there is no greater gift than the light in a child's eye when he gains the knowledge or reaches a goal that you guided him to attaining. If you aren't careful, a child may make a difference in your life as well (it happened to me). A child's smile and bright eyes will touch your soul in a way I cannot describe. Please get out there and make a difference, one child, and one hour at a time.
Contact your local PTA in a school near you for information on how you can become involved, or log onto the PTA website and click on the regions tab to find the regional director for your area. Email them for information about the school you are interested in. You can make a difference.