Peer Counseling participates in Youth Education Series program

Peer Counseling participated in the Youth Education Series (YES) program at Disneyland on Friday, Sept. 29.

YES teaches leadership skills with team-building activities that challenge students to work together, communicate and be effective leaders.

“I think that through [Disneyland’s program], everyone has a bigger sense of leadership in them, so they can take charge and actually help other students or other Peer Counselors, too. If one person gets stuck and doesn’t know what to do, then someone else can be there to step up and help out,” Peer Counselor junior Renzo Sy said. “It was all a very inclusive day for everyone.”

One of the exercises was exploring an island with their eyes closed while following a leader. It was designed to develop students’ teamwork abilities and their trust in one another.

“We had to just trust that one person to guide us through because it’s a pretty crowded place, so we didn’t want to trip anywhere, fall or get hurt,” Sy said. “There’s a lot of characteristics that one needs to have in order to be a leader, like if you’re motivated, if you’re influential, if you can communicate well.”

After participating in the activities, the students were allowed to tour the park and go on rides. Peer Counselors plan to apply what they learned during their trip to their goal of helping their classmates deal with their struggles.

“Peer Counselors are not there to give advice. They’re there to listen and help people figure out themselves. So [YES] was good training for that, which is a big part of what we do. One of the things Disney stressed was having the courage to keep going, never say no [and] always look for the way to make what you want to have happen happen,” Peer Counseling adviser Drew Johannsen said. “So I think those would be the things that we kind of focused on. Being creative, helping people [and] brainstorming ways [in which] they can maybe get through their problems is part of what Peer Counseling is.”

By Ethan Cheng, Staff writer
Photo courtesy of Maggie Ho

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