Mothering, Mentoring and Magic
As a proud member of the Boomer Nation, I think talking to kids keeps you young.
My kids are ages 23 and 20, and even when they were growing up I always enjoyed the opportunity to converse with their peers and other kids of all ages. (I consider it a major accomplishment that not only am I friends with my kids on Facebook, but I’m also friends with some of their friends – as long as I refrain from making ‘Motherish’ comments on questionable posts).
My previous career in TV news afforded me the chance to take part in dozens of elementary and high school career days, and I always enjoyed it. It’s especially gratifying when you can interact with young people as part of your job. That’s why I had such a great time serving as one of several FedEx mentors during the recent Magic Johnson Foundation Scholars weekend in Los Angeles.
FedEx is a sponsor of this outstanding organization that provides scholarships, seminars, counseling, workshops and more to dozens of young people who often have overcome tremendous odds in order to have the opportunity to go to college.
Josue is from L.A. and has visions of becoming a diplomat, based in Latin America. He’s the first in his family to attend college. Edrick loves sports, wants to become a physical therapist and has amassed more than 40 pairs of Air Jordan shoes, all sealed for protection like any good collector would do. William is from the Bronx, and doesn’t seem daunted at all by the prospect of at least 12 years worth of higher education in his pursuit of a career as a surgeon. And Ryan loves photography, and plans to become a photojournalist.
These young men seem to have a good understanding about the challenges ahead. We had a great conversation, covering many topics like time management, mission statements, balancing academics with social involvements, etc. I told them they could contact me anytime if they have questions or just want to keep in touch.
They inspire me with their determinism, thirst for knowledge and hope for the future. And as we exchanged email addresses, I assured them I would be checking up on them occasionally. Just like any mother would do.