As told by ACES Manager of Youth Education, Wesley Garrard:
During one of our Robotics team meetings at Peoria Friendship House, I had a wonderful conversation with two of the girls who are enrolled in our Academy and members on our robotics team.
We were discussing their future plans at Peoria Friendship House. One student, Kymmya, is in the 7th grade. I asked her if she would be interested in volunteering as a tutor in our Academy when she reached high school. She said it would be awesome to work in the academy as a tutor. Her next question is what floored me. She asked if volunteering as a tutor would look good on a college application. Of course it would! Her sister, Kouri, who is in 5th grade, was excited to hear that and offered her services to volunteer as a tutor when she reached high school age.
So here I have two young sisters planning for college relatively early in their academic careers. Kymmya then told me that she would like to attend Georgetown University and work to become an orthopedic surgeon. Kouri wishes to attend Bradley University. She has dreams of becoming an engineering instructor and a writer. Both of these girls will be eligible for college scholarships through participation in the FIRST robotics programs that Friendship House has now become affiliated with.
It is great to see the children that we serve at Peoria Friendship House planning for their future. I always tell anyone who will listen about the importance of youth education. Our future is only as bright as the next generation that leads it. In these girls, I can see a very bright future.