Student Union

• Collaborate, collaborate, collaborate. A good relationship with school administration and community partners both in and outside of an organization is vital in developing a strong program. This combined support makes the vision possible.

• Ask school administrators and the teens themselves what they need and want. Don’t waste time and energy developing a program that doesn’t appeal to teen interests.

• Involve teens in planning and developing programs while encouraging low- and no-cost options (e.g., hiking). High-school students are only a few short steps away from entering adulthood. Give them a chance to prove their ability to coordinate trips and activities while offering your support and guidance along the way.

• Involve teens in volunteer opportunities; this is an integral component to success. Not only do students benefit by earning volunteer hours required to graduate and acquire practical work experience, but volunteering gives them a sense of purpose and responsibility in their community. Students learn that their actions make a difference.

• Encourage participation in fundraising. Teens need to feel ownership of the program—not just in planning, but in making the plans a reality.

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