Take a Second, Make a Difference,TASMAD for short, was a two-day retreat held in mid-October for a group of 25 high school students and four teachers, while 15 junior high students and four adults met on Oct. 24, at the Cottonwood Falls Community Building. The retreats were organized and directed by teachers Dusty Hazelton and Linda Drake and student support services coordinator Andrea Eidman.
“The purpose of the retreat was to incorporate team building with the rest of the TASMAD leadership team, to grow your individual leadership skills and to explore ideas on how to improve our school,” Eidman said. “It is designed to be the starting point of action plans designed by students that we will implement throughout the year.”
These people were selected by their peers as individuals whose opinions are valued as well as being trustworthy and good leaders.
“I felt that it was very cool to see which students were thought to be the best leaders in our school,” sophomore Carys Price said. “I know other students that didn’t get picked felt left out but I think once TASMAD starts doing the group exercises with the whole school, it will help with everyone feeling involved.”
At the retreat, they played games as bonding exercises to get more comfortable with the people there, discussed many important topics and learned how to write action plans so the student leaders can work with the rest of the students to create more action plans for the school.
“At TASMAD we did lots of things including fun games, team bonding, problem solving in our school, and most importantly, we sat down and started the journey to make changes happen,” junior Paisley Voboril said.
While many of the people who attended TASMAD enjoyed the activities, there were several things that they enjoyed the most.
“My favorite part was getting to spend time with a handful of students and teachers and getting closer to them,” senior Cooper Schroer said.
Juniors Brock Griffin and Kinzie Rogers and Price, who participated in the high school retreat, were selected to help with the junior high workshop.
“The junior high retreat was a really great thing that I was so happy to be a part of. I got to see a different view of our school through younger kids' eyes,” Price said.
The connections made at TASMAD are connections that many people can agree were an amazing part of the event.
“The best part for me was having the opportunity to be there and witness great connections between students and staff,” Eidman said.