Teenagers who astound us (in a good way!)

Great kids

They’re out there. They’re actually great in number but they never seem to get the recognition they deserve. Good teenagers – the ones who make you smile and warm your heart and give you all kinds of hope for the future – they’re everywhere if you’re willing to see them.

Some of them make it easy. A couple of days ago, I was summoned to a meeting with a teenager and his father. At age 12, this teenager had started his own non-profit organization to help kids his age find focus and choose paths that would help them to achieve their dreams. Let me repeat that: He started his own non-profit at age 12. He has a website, business cards, a completely full online calendar – this kid could give Kid President a run for his money.

I just sat there listening while he very eloquently articulated his mission statement, his accomplishments, his wishes and desires for other teens. He wanted to form a partnership with my organization so that we could work together to serve the kids who need it. He looked me in the eyes, called me by name, listened when I spoke, and showed an incredible and beautiful mixture of enthusiasm and grace. Quite frankly, he impressed me as an outstanding human being. How often do you meet anyone – let alone a teenager – who does that?

What amazing teenagers have you met and why did they impress you? Why don’t we hear more about these teens?

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3 thoughts on “Teenagers who astound us (in a good way!)

  1. Yes they certainly are out there…I never truly realized how many and to what degree until I organized a banquet to honor top students in our local school district. It was enough that the honorees, all graduating seniors, were able to maintain almost perfect GPA’s. What so impressed me was that many of them did this while volunteering for many causes and often while facing personal challenges such as family medical or financial trauma. Some of these students were going on to earn degrees in subjects I can’t even pronounce. One young lady gave of her time to work on a project that would hopefully lead to a cure for a specific cancer. Needless to say, my eyes were opened to the fact that the accomplishments of some of our top academic students are often much more than the GPA on a college application.

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  2. Rebecca–how do you think we can encourage this in young people? I love reading about these impressive teens. How can we get other teens to see that they can do the same?

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