I came to Queen's Faculty of Education because it is a community of people imagining together what the future can be, and working together to realize it.
I believe in the promise and potential of today's youth and in the magic of dance to entertain, inspire and educate. And thanks in part to alumni donors like you, I'm bringing dance and youth together to create change.
Last year, I combined the lessons I've learned at Queen's Education with my passion for Step and Hip-Hop dance to create change for Kingston youth through STEP CREW.
I've learned that, as a teacher, the questions you ask your students will lead to the questions they will ask of the world. And that if you believe in them they will find the courage to believe in themselves.
My STEP CREW is an equal opportunity dance team that uses community to explore individuality. We support personal growth, encourage fearless self-reflection, and practice dance as a form of communication.
We perform at Queen's and Kingston events and have partnered with local organizations, teaching and developing youth dance programs and workshops.
This year, thanks to the support, encouragement and interest from the entire Queen's community, we expanded again. STEP CREW now offers a targeted program to help Kingston's at-risk youth.
I've seen the way dance allows young people to make connections and express themselves. At first, they hold back, not sure what to make of each other or the dance. Soon, the group starts to unite as they laugh together and learn together.
It doesn't take long before the students gain confidence in themselves and each other, creating their own moves and routines. They tap into their confusion, anger and joy, learning how to navigate their emotions and their lives in a healthy way.
STEP CREW is just one example of the many ways education students are taking initiative beyond the classroom.
Other education students are developing specialized curricula for target student groups, establishing youth programming in under-serviced communities, and researching new methods of teaching mathematics and phonics. What we all have in common is the desire to make a difference.
Just as one student can make a difference, one donor can make a difference by ensuring the opportunities are available.
We can't do it without you. Please add your support with a gift to the Teaching Excellence Fund in Education today.
Yours in thanks,
Crystal Lo, Education'12