What do an Idol finalist, football star, lawyer, writer and 100+ high school students have in common?
More than you might think!
A Teen Summit intended to promote a discussion of the dangers of underage drinking and substance abuse among youth in Warren County drew over 100 participating students.
The Summit was held at Centenary College in late May and included junior and senior students from Warren Hills, Hackettstown, Belvidere, North Warren, Warren County Vo-Tech and Stepping Stone.
A dynamic panel of guest speakers included Tyler Grady, an American Idol Finalist, Gersen Martinez, Spoken Word Artist, Sue Petit, Miss America Attorney, Ned Bolcar, Notre Dame star and former NFL player, Dr. Will Austin, President of Warren County Community College, successful business man and Princeton graduate, Rich Herschlag, Motivational Speaker Billy Staples, and others.
The Summit was sponsored by the Coalition for Healthy and Safe Communities, a program of Prevention Connections/ Family Guidance Center of Warren County.
The Summit featured a Q&A session with topics ranging from bullying to finding hope in your darkest moments. Many of the speakers revealed the often painful transitions they endured through their lives as teens and young adults. Afterwards, students met with the panelists and explored a variety of interactive and informational booths set up throughout the gym. The most popular booth was the “Fatal Vision Glasses” where students attempted to walk a straight line with glasses that give the wearer the feeling of being drunk.
Among the many comments from participating students:
“It was interesting to hear everyone’s different stories and how they overcame obstacles in different ways.”
“I liked how everyone was open and honest.”
“Never let anyone bring you down and always work for the life you want no matter how hard life is.”
“It is okay to fail in some things in life.”
“There is always someone there for you.”
“You can determine the outcome of your life.”
“Anyone can overcome addiction if they are determined.”
The next Teen Summit is scheduled for October! Consider helping out by being a sponsor.
For more information, contact Mary Jo Harris firstname.lastname@example.org.
For those interested in getting involved with Prevention Connections and its varied programs, please call 908-689-1000 and ask for either Diane Bonelli or Mary Jo Harris.