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2018-19 Peer Mentors take on Camp Mason

Peer+Mentors+work+together+to+make+their+way+across+cable+wires+at+YMCA+Camp+Mason+in+Hardwick%2C+NJ.
Peer Mentors work together to make their way across cable wires at YMCA Camp Mason in Hardwick, NJ.

Peer Mentors work together to make their way across cable wires at YMCA Camp Mason in Hardwick, NJ.

by Meghan Patel

by Meghan Patel

Peer Mentors work together to make their way across cable wires at YMCA Camp Mason in Hardwick, NJ.

Meghan Patel and Lindsey Baum

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Canoeing, swinging from a 50 foot tree, and climbing over wooden walls are only a few of the countless activities Peer Mentors participate in on their weekend retreat.

Leaving on Saturday May 12 and returning Sunday evening, the 2018-2019 group of Peer Mentors made their way to YMCA Camp Mason in Hardwick, New Jersey. The trip began with the random assignment of new partners to the rising seniors.

On the two hour bus ride, new partners became well acquainted learning everything about each other from favorite foods to their extracurricular commitments. 

After the mentors arrived, they settled into their cabins, prepared themselves for the jam packed days ahead, and met with Camp Mason employees who were leading the retreat.

Once in the woods, different groups participated in a number activities. In these activities, the Peer Mentors had to use communication and teamwork skills to complete the range of different challenges.

In the evening, the entire group congregated to go through a series of activities familiarizing the entire group and building the imperative bond. Together the group worked on modifying freshman modules and learning about how to handle difficult situations that they might be faced with as Peer Mentors.

When students arose on Sunday, they participated in the high ropes course. As is every year, the favorite element was the swing, where students are hauled up to a 50 foot tree, while wearing a harness, and released to swing through the trees.

Most notably, the food showed major improvement over past years. Previously, dishes like meatloaf and dry french toast sticks were offered, but the delicacies of baked ziti, eggs and bacon, and chicken wraps were considerably better this year.

“I liked how easy it was for our grades to connect with one another,” senior Sruti Yanamandra said. “We really connected and became close as a group.”

The weekend aimed to not only teach the new group of Peer Mentors to work together but to also bond as high schoolers and become close friends. The next time the group will meet is at Freshman Orientation in August.

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