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On Tuesday June 21st ISE had the opportunity to help Kick off Penn’s Upward Bound program.   Penn Upward Bound (UB) is an afterschool and summer college prep program for highly motivated students at Sayre, Overbrook, West Philadelphia, and Parkway West who demonstrate financial need or will be first-generation-to-college students. They provide academic support to high school students so they may complete high school, enroll in college, and successfully obtain a college degree.

From our Instructor, Haylee…

“It was really exciting for me to teach some students from my neighborhood! This was their first day of the program, and school had just ended on June 14th, so you can imagine they weren’t that excited to be back in a classroom. I could still see some curious and eager eyes as they entered the classroom. There were students from a lot of different high schools and most of them had never met each other before. We started off with a name & memory game to ease the awkwardness of their first time together. It didn’t take long before they were helping each other out and goofing around. It was a beautiful segway to talk about focus, attention, and relaxation. In 50 mins they had practiced 2 different types of meditation, mapped out their thoughts and identified when they would be able to use these new tools. I was really impressed with their maturity and openness, none of them had practiced meditation before. My final class had such a peaceful stillness in their final breath meditation that we stayed in it for over the 5 minutes i had planned. As they blinked their eyes open I got to witness that sweet space between meditation and re-entering the classroom. I am excited for them as they continue growing their friendships and gaining new skills for success!”

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