FOCUS ON EDUCATION Tomorrow calls for a new kind of leader.
Continued from page 17 cause if talking to people through a computer could help me write two novels in the pandemic, then I know that when we get back in person, every little bit of that time not wasted will inspire me to keep writing. If writing can get me through a pandemic, it can get me through anything else.
Rohan Datta, The Galloway School, Class of 2022
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When The Galloway School switched to remote learning in March 2020 as the pandemic surged, I was initially concerned about missing in-person classes and lunch with friends. As the originally three-week virtual commitment dragged on for three months, I felt isolated and unproductive. Fortunately, the tightly-
knit community I’ve loved since Pre-K came through with Zoom, game-nights, FaceTimes, and socially-distant activities making me feel part of the community struggling together. What the pandemic did affect, though, was my entrepreneurial aspirations. In the summer of 2020, I was excited to be selected for LaunchX, an entrepreneurship program that helps high schoolers launch startups and get real-world business experience. I was despondent when I saw the email announcing the program’s shift to virtual for its 6-week duration. This would significantly limit my ability to do market research with face-to-face encounters and interact with peers and even my own startup group. Luckily, over the course of the program, I was able to draw on and improve my ability to reach out to other people – even virtually – helping my team pivot from our initial idea, create a minimum viable product, and find beta testers. To escape feelings of isolation, I reached out to mentors and participated in the program’s community-building virtual events. Although I acquired knowledge of ideation and bringing products to market, perhaps the most valuable lesson I learned was the real meaning of “networking.” It finally became clear to me that online networking goes beyond clicking the “like” button on Instagram or “connect” on LinkedIn. It is sharing your personality and genuine interest in the other person – without using a resume as a script. Even though I look forward to seeing people, interpreting body language, and hearing without a desktop speaker, as we emerge from the pandemic with “Zoom” as a verb, I know that these online networking skills are here to stay.
Kate’s Club book offers coping tips to grieving families Kate’s Club, the Brookhaven‐based non‐profit whose mission is to empower children facing life after the death of a parent, sibling or caregiver, is now getting its message out via a new book. “We Come Together As One: Helping Families Grieve, Share and Heal The Kate’s Club Way” is based on the authors’ knowledge gained from working with families that are a part of the organization. Lane Pease Hendricks is director of programs at Kate’s Club, and Nancy L. Kriseman is a licensed clinical social worker, buddy volunteer, and ambassador for the organization. The “Kates’ Club Way” believes in empowering children and teens as they move through their grief process so they can become more resilient and ultimately find ways to thrive. The book builds on that philosophy by providing suggestions and ideas so that adult caregivers have strategies and tools to best support their families. Plus, there are several chapters dedicated to helping adult caregivers cope with their own feelings about the death as they create a new life for themselves. Kate’s Club was founded in 2003 by Kate Atwood after losing her mother to breast cancer at age 12. The book is available at Amazon. Find out more at katesclub.org. — COLLIN KELLEY
18 SEPTEMBER 2021 | REPORTER NEWSPAPERS