Summer Training 2019 in NYC!
By Jessica Cho, HealthCorps Summer Intern 2019
High-energy, interactive, and inspiring. Those are the words that come to mind when I think about this year’s in-person summer training held at the HealthCorps’ New York City office during the last week of July. Coordinators from all over the country who will teach at their respective high-risk schools throughout the US recently came together to prepare for the upcoming school year. Over the course of a week, our Coordinators were equipped with the knowledge and resources to best teach the pillars of nutrition, fitness, mental resilience, and community service.
The HealthCorps is an organization I was immediately drawn to after first discovering it. I firmly believe that spreading the importance of healthy living to our youth, especially in high risk populations, is key to building a healthier and brighter future for generations to come. But many times, it’s not that people are incapable of living healthy lives, rather they’re not taught easy and sustainable ways to do so. Simple changes can go a long way and HealthCorps Coordinators prove this in their classrooms. There was something particularly special about being part of the environment that summer training created right in the office setting. The room buzzed with life and good energy during interactive presentations, team building activities, stretch breaks, friendly conversations, and group discussions. The fun and engaging learning sessions exceeded all my expectations of what a week of training is typically like. Coordinators were encouraged to learn from each other by sharing personal experiences and there was a tangible communal sense of support. Even as a spectator, sitting at the back of the room, I became easily invested in all the day’s activities and it was nothing short of motivating.
From learning the foundations of Sahaja meditation to internalizing strategies to deal with distress when life hits hard, I am grateful to have had the experience of being present for part of the Coordinator training experience. I am confident that I’ve attained new skills I can practice in my everyday life and I am equally as confident that the lessons taught will resonate with other students as well and even change lives. Even getting a small taste of the kind of material that will be taught this year in classroom’s around the nation fills me with hope and excitement.
In the words of Mark Goulston, world-renowned psychiatrist and HC advisory board member, all the lessons imparted on the Coordinators were “relevant, do-able, and sustainable”. This is key! In schools, students may focus on subjects like Math, English, Science, Language, etc., but some of the most useful skills in life like managing stress and disappointment are not part of the core curriculum. This is where HealthCorps Coordinators come in, fully prepared to spread relevant messages about living a happy, healthy life—something that isn’t necessarily taught in textbooks. The HealthCorps has certainly found the right mix of personalities and passionate people to open students up to new ways of thinking about health.
HealthCorps is a community. But more so, it’s a family. Though each Coordinator will soon be going off to have their own unique experiences, the care and support expressed to one another during summer training demonstrated the power of a bond made evident by a common love—the love of bringing healthier, happier living to all. It’s this feeling of connectedness that I think has made the experience both productive and truly enjoyable for everyone. It was incredible to see each Coordinator interact, collaborate, grow, and smile together. As the new school year lurks just around the corner, I am left with a great sense of admiration and hope for the future of HealthCorps. Look out world, the HealthCorps Coordinators, in high- spirits, are ready to bring it full force this year! And as they do, we become many steps closer to achieving all our HealthCorps goals.
Check out the HealthCorps Instagram (@healthcorps) to learn more about each of this year’s Coordinators!