At Home in Berks April 2017 - 5

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FROM THE PRESIDENT

A Few Words
from Cathy Sloan
H

ow often have you heard "the youth of today are so
different from when I was their age"? Are they really
that much different or have they just grown up in a
more technological world which makes them appear different?
Who is responsible for creating this technology? I would tend
to think it is the baby boomer generation and prior that had a
hand in creating the new technology. Maybe it is time we take
responsibility and stop making excuses and find ways to help
them see what they can accomplish.
I recently had the opportunity of reading a 'Thank You' letter
from a RMCTC student and it made me realize that maybe
it isn't much different than we think. This student was very
thankful for the opportunity to be invited to an event of the
HBA, and that he got to sit with the outgoing President who he
had met at the HBA Spring Clean Up last year and was looking
forward to meeting the incoming President at the HBA Spring
Clean Up this year. That is when I realized that the youth of
today just need to be given the opportunity to know that there
are people out there who want to give them a chance as long as
they work hard and are respectable. We have to stop looking
at all youth as the same because they are not, just like we were
not all the same when we were young. Even we had what you
could consider your losers and winners and I believe that to
be true today. Where will we be if we don't give them the same
opportunities that were given to us growing up?

The biggest difference I see with today's youth is that they expect things to be handed to them and not have to work as hard
as maybe we did. I've been wondering what may have caused
this and the conclusion I come up with is we did. We don't allow teachers to have the authority they once had in the schools
to punish our children. There is the "no student left behind,"
where students realize they don't have to work hard and they
still will graduate. If your child is being bullied they no longer
have the right to stand up for themselves, but must seek out an
adult to make the playing field level. All children have to get
playing time when it comes to sports even if they don't work at
bettering themselves. If we continue to enable our children it
will only get worse.

However, with some of that said, I still think we can make a
difference in the lives of the youth today. Every year for the last
several years I have gone to the RMCTC to talk to the students
regarding life after graduation and it has been very rewarding
for me. This year I had the opportunity to be escorted to the
classes I was speaking in by the RMCTC HBA Student Chapter
President of the morning class. While he was escorting me
between classes I had the pleasure of speaking with him about
what they are doing in their student chapter and was impressed that they actually might be doing things better than we
are as adults in the HBA Association. If I remember correctly
their membership was about 35-40 students, which is a quarter
of our membership. They truly are proud to be a part of the
HBA and look forward to accessing our Student Chapter Affiliate program. This particular student was also very interested in
wanting to show me the little house they were building in their
shop, so when the morning session was done he took the time
to explain everything they had already done and what they
would be doing to finish it.
All of this made me realize that there are youth that are proud
of what they accomplish and work hard; they just don't always
have the support from their family and peers. Sometimes that
is when they start to give up. I believe the message in all of this
is that we need to start believing that there are youth out there
who want to be hard-working, respectable individuals and if
given a chance, will be.
Cathy Sloan, CGR, CAPS, CGP
2017 HBA of Berks County President

April 2017 AT HOME IN BERKs

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