National Treasures

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

The most important resource this country has is its children, and increasingly, research points to the startling degree to which these bright lights start to dim during high school. Our national graduation rate is hovering at 70%, while cities like LA and New York weigh in at concerningly low rates of 48% and 45%. Detroit ranks the lowest in America at an unbelievable 25%. This is a complex problem and I have a simple solution that I believe will help increase on-time graduation rates and ultimately put our economy back on track over the long term. Ready?

If every young person, each semester of his or her high school education, was asked the question, “What’s your dream?” and adults actively listened to the answer without judgment and encouraged that child to go after it, many great things would happen. I have spent the last 14 years of my life perfecting this process for adults who categorically report that they were not asked that question or were ridiculed for having overly-dreamy aspirations earlier in life

I have pledged the next ten years (or more) of my career to implementing a teen-friendly process called Do Your Thing! in schools all over the world.  The process supports teen students in uncovering their unique potential, and offers tools to visionary educators to do likewise.

In the meantime, please check out this LA Times article about a special teacher and his students, and how they captured the attention of our President:,0,2036324.story 

If you have questions about our teen programs or would like to get involved in this movement, please write me.

Laurel Donnellan                                                                                                                             CEO                                                                                                                                                 Bright Livelihoods

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