Students discover leadership through service

Pickett's young students, under the guidance of sixth-grade teacher Debbie Alexander, are now looking up to college students as role models to emulate, too. That's where Justin Garritt, a former students enrolled at CSC, showed his commitment to service, too.

Last year, Garritt welcomed elementary school students to the college's campus to befriend the "awesome" NCAA Division III Castleton Spartans football team. Team members welcomed the youngsters to ball practice; the athletes even helped students think about how to score "personal field goals"-valuable advice in any game plan, on or off the gridiron.

The elementary school's mentors helped oversee two so-called gentlemen's clubs for boys. Castleton's single-gender groups-modeled after the highly successful CFES-funded Millville Gentleman's Club in a New Jersey school district-helped harness the energy of young boys providing them with structure, leadership training, social skills, and needed male role models.

"All our community service leadership efforts stress a strong work ethic, academic improvement, and social skills," said Alexander. "In the case of our boys, they can still be boys but they can also discover pride in serving others in their immediate community and beyond."

The Castleton program is one example, among others, that demonstrate that leadership through service programs, sponsored by organizations such as CFES, are working.

French aviator and author Antoine de Saint Exupery might have anticipated the work of CFES's adult- and peer-leadership mentors like Justin Garritt and Maci Bowens when he wrote: "It is not for us to forecast the future, but to shape it."

For information about creating a CFES leadership-through-service program at your school, contact Rick Dalton, president and CEO of CFES, by calling 802-236-1235 or e-mailing dalton@collegefes.org.

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