August, September & October – A Recap!

The Massachusetts Promise Fellowship 2014-2015 Service Year has begun! In fact, it began three months ago. Our blog took a little hiatus, but we are back & better than ever! In case you missed us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.. Here’s a brief recap of what we’ve been up to!

FIRST OF ALL.. WHO IS CLASS 16? Keep your eyes on our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more in-depth info about this years fellows!

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CLASS 16 ORIENTATION! August 5th, 6th, & 7th.

Fellows old and new bonded during a three-day orientation hosted at Northeastern University. Laughs, trivia, and an alumni beach party ensued! Fellows learned the ins and outs of the fellowship, including the five promises, the ever important timesheet & travel reimbursement processes, introductions to advising groups, learning about great benefits (like Northeasterns College of Professional Studies Courses!) and even heard the wise words of alums on the topic of ‘Living on The Stipend’. Fellows shared their River Stories, reviewed the contract policies, and discussed how to navigate challenging host site situations. Finally, fellows were sworn in and sent off with a new book of knowledge!

AUGUST MONTHLY MEETING! August 27th & 28th.

Fellows had the pleasure of learning more about pre and post surveys at the service site, mapping out a service plan and participating in a Community Based Asset Mapping workshop facilitated by Senior Fellow Carro Hua. During the second day, Fellows focused on Positive Youth Development with trainer Daisy Ortega from Health Resources in Action.

AMERICORPS OPENING DAY! September 12th.

This years fellows were honored to celebrate AmeriCorps Opening Day with President Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Wendy Spencer (well, via Skype at least). Fellows were sworn into their service year and showed off their awesome powder blue T’s!

SEPTEMBER MONTHLY MEETING! September 25th & 26th.

This meeting opened with our first Skill Share of the year led by second year fellow Erica Pike. Trainer, Steph Trilling, from the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC) then lead us through a day’s worth of training titled, “Can We Talk? A Sexual Violence Prevention Training”. On day two, we focused on tactics to reduce stress throughout the service year and also share resources through collaboration cafe activity. Senior Fellow Don Brown lead a training titled “The Power of Habits: Understanding Why We Do The Things We Do”. Followed by a “Stress Management and Boundary Setting” workshop led by Senior Fellows Katie Purcell and Jenny Woodford.

FALL RETREAT! October 22nd, 23rd & 24th.

What can we say about fall retreat? WE LOVE IT! Fellows bonded in the beautiful land of Beckett, Massachusetts – located in the lush foliage laden Berkshires! Fellows took part in the tradition of Fellow Olympics, low ropes and team building courses, met with their advising groups, and shared s’mores around the cozy fireplace. On day two, fellows learned about Multiple Intelligence Theory Through Theatre Curriculum courtesy of Fellow Caitlin Hugel. Next up, a Community Building & Social Justice Workshop with Carro! During free time, some fellows went hiking and indoor rock climbing, while others chose to improve their nail art skills or visit Dylan (the friendly Camp Beckett horse!). The night ended with an optional social justice film. On day three, fellows worked on Sharing Their Story with Jenny and a Self Care workshop with Katy. The Olympic winners were announced and Pass The Wagon left our three-day adventure on a beautiful note!

Love in Service,

MPF

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