By Travis Mounts
Eight students at Goddard Academy High School played big roles in the planning and execution of this year’s Neighbors United event, which took place on Saturday.
This was a new and enlarged role for the students, and they proved worthy of the challenge, according to people involved in the planning.
Drenda Joslyn, a library and media specialist at Goddard Academy, said the students worked closely with Goddard Chamber of Commerce members on the planning.
“They learned how to group people to projects. They also designed and ordered T-shirts,” she said. The students worked on all aspects of planning, and were responsible for social media posts. They made arrangements for donated and discounted meals for the many volunteers who helped out on Saturday. They were part of the set-up beforehand and the breakdown after, and they are part of the review meeting happening this week. Brian Gee, principal of Goddard Academy, also has a leadership role with the Chamber and helped coordinate the connections. Several Goddard Academy personnel were involved.
Goddard Chamber of commerce president and CEO Angie Duntz had high praise for the students.
“The Goddard Academy students did a fantastic job. They were very professional. Planning an event is very complicated,” said she said. “I’d like to see some of them become future leaders in Goddard.”
She said the students were set up with mentors planning the event, who showed them how to pull together a big community activity.
Joslyn said the students learned a great deal.
“They understand what the process of planning an event is. They saw people and organizations working together, and they learned to talk with people,” she said. “They saw skills they didn’t know they had.”