by Maisie Brown
My experience during my second summer at YMP has been nothing short of amazing. Even though we’ve only been here for a few days this summer, I will alway cherish the friendships and happiness I’ve received. From the first day I arrived, there seemed to be a sea of fresh, excited faces seemingly eager to dive into the work ahead. I’ve met and engaged with so many different kinds of people at one time. The moment we all met, there was an instant bond where we knew we could communicate freely and respectfully within our groups.
I also found that the returning students all changed in many ways. Sean was taller than I’d remembered, Maggie’s balance had become increasingly worse, and my tedious makeup practice over the year had finally given me a full face of pay-off. Seeing the familiar faces, along with new excited faces, eased any sense of nervousness or doubt I had before entering the building.
From the first day we entered, we were immediately greeted with mentors I knew I’d love instantly! I could tell they genuinely cared for our well-being and wanted us to have the best experience possible.
Honestly in the beginning, though, I thought the activities and things we were going over were pointless. As we did group icebreakers and bonding exercises, I couldn’t help but think, “Why are we even talking about this? Shouldn’t this be things we all already know? Why can’t we just get to the work?”
Now that we’re five days in, and I’ve had the opportunity to observe everyone and their thought processes, I understand why we took so much time to do these things. Establishing expectations, goals, and identifying one’s strengths and weaknesses are critical to an efficiently functioning work environment, especially one involving many developing teenagers. I know the lessons I have picked up will be beneficial in the future when I plan on owning a business.
Overall, I know I will enjoy the people I’m surrounded by this summer and am extremely excited for what is to come. I know with all of the brilliant ideas and personalities, we will together produce amazing work that will hopefully inspire other youth across to pursue their dreams and tell their stories.
Mississippi Public Broadcasting (MPB) is a leader in informational broadcasting. MPB has exhibited a commitment to educating and informing Mississippians. MPB has partnered with YMP to lend tech equipment and provide youth engagement and media specialists to train students.
E3, a project of Parents of Public Schools of Jackson (now Ask for More), supported YMP in summers 2016 and 2017 with stipends for students, and other resources.
The Community Foundation of Greater Jackson (now The Community Foundation of Mississippi) is the
fiscal sponsor for E3.
Choice Printing in downtown Jackson is an in-kind sponsor of YMP offering YMP copying and printing services from its Capitol Towers location.
Jackson-based Workplace Solutions by Barefield is a Steelcase authorized dealer offering high-end office furniture and technology solutions. Workplace Solutions has loaned chairs, mobile desks and mobile whiteboards to create a collaborative office for YMP participants.
Jackson-based Fuse.cloud (formerly Broadband Voice) offers Voice-over-IP phone systems, fiber Internet connections and technical services. Fuse.cloud has sponsored phones, VoIP phone service and technical assistance for YMP.