So why do you get up in the morning? A sense of duty to family? For a paycheck? Out of habit?
When Launchpad Eagles were asked this question…. silence. Follow by more silence. Then a few halfhearted responses like: “College, I guess.”
These are the best and brightest young people we have. Hard working. Independent. Deeply invested in the Hero’s Journey. Still, the best we’ve offered them as a society to the meaning of life seems to be: “college.”
Only 19% of Texas High school students from graduate from college within six years of leaving high school. According to national estimates, only half of these college graduates will find a job worthy of a college graduate. So less than 10% of Texas high school students will find college level jobs. For disadvantaged young people, the number is far lower.
And, of course, life is about far more than your job.
As a society, we are failing our young heroes. It would be difficult to design a system to produce worse results.
We will do a better job serving our Launnchpad Eagles, whatever it takes. As a start, we’ll offer for challenges to help spark a calling:
- Circles of Trust – intimate, protected discussions about what matters in life and why.
- Tortoise-like Contemplation – protected, quiet reflection times, free from distractions. Time for free writing or deep thought, armed with only a pad, pen and an inspirational reading.
- Learning by Doing – setting SMART goals and measuring progress towards a goal that matters to the individual. Finding the “AND” so you can access personal passions while doing something that’s valued by the world.
- Servant Leadership – practicing serving others, in a way that encourages your growth and theirs.
We’ll also ask Launchpadders to identify what drives her or him personally, and why:
- Who I am.
- Where I belong.
- My promises.
- Winning the game.
- Serving others.
- Pursuing an Opportunity
- Righting an injustice or fighting against something.
- Fighting against something or someone.
- Duty to a person or God.
Accessing deep pools of inner motivation is an important and never ending life skill. The answer of “Why should I get up in the morning?” is a difficult one, and many of us change our answers as we grow.
College can be an effective and transformational experience. But answering “college” to the question of “Why do you get up in the morning?” will never be a sufficient answer at Acton Academy. We expect far more from our young Launchpad heroes.