By Danny Domingo (SuperCamp Graduate and QLN Intern)
Melia tended to only do things if she had to: socialize, try new things, go to SuperCamp. The program sounded suspiciously like school (not something she wanted to do during the summer), and she didn’t think that she was going to take anything away from it… until she attended and saw how relevant the content was to her and how it became part of her life.
The first time Melia heard about SuperCamp was through her grandma, who had sent multiple cousins to SuperCamp in the past. Both her parents and grandparents had decided that SuperCamp would be a good thing for her and her brother to experience. She wasn’t initially excited about the idea of going, but as she recalls, “I would do it [SuperCamp] because I knew they already put money into it and I didn’t want to waste that. It was also a good opportunity for me to learn, but it wasn’t something that I would have willingly done. It was a good thing that I was forced to do it.”
On arrival at the Loyola Marymount SuperCamp, Melia had mixed emotions. She knew that she would benefit greatly from the experience and it would help prepare her for high school and college as an entering freshman, but she wanted to be with her family, not with a bunch of strangers who were going to make her do schoolwork over the summer. Once the camp started, she was pleasantly surprised at how much fun the activities and games were. She was able to get to know people through the icebreakers and made friends relatively quickly, and it wasn’t at all the summer-school-esque environment that she was expecting. She enjoyed learning all of the skills and strategies for speedreading, communication, and for note-taking because they were applicable for her and she could create better habits from them.
The first SuperCamp icebreaker activity was the one that was the catalyst for change for Melia. All of the campers stood in a line and were presented with a prompt. Depending on if they agreed or disagreed, they would move to opposite sides. She was able to make more connections and start conversations with people knowing that they had similar interests, and now Melia is much more comfortable introducing herself on her own and creating conversation with unfamiliar people in ways she never felt comfortable doing before.
Coming back from summer and making the transition from middle school to high school, she was able to put all of her newly learned skills to use in the classroom, and they helped her out a lot with her academics and her relationships with her teachers. She didn’t realize it at first when she came back from SuperCamp, but she unconsciously started to recognize and use the 8 Keys in her everyday life. That alone has helped her to realize that she can make a difference with everyone that she works with just by exhibiting and living the 8 Keys, so that they can see her values and the example she is setting forth.
Melia is grateful that she was able to experience SuperCamp. She can’t speak for everyone, but she said, “I came in not really wanting to go, and the reluctance was definitely there. After you go through the process and give it [SuperCamp] a chance, you take a lot back into your life that will help you socially, personally, and academically. I thought that I wasn’t going to take anything away from the experience and that I wasn’t going to enjoy it at all. Even if you may be reluctant and SuperCamp may be something you don’t want to do, just give it a chance because you never know what you are going to learn.”
For information about Quantum Learning’s SuperCamp go to www.supercamp.com