By: Tabitha Hendren
Imagine. Imagine a world where every single child has the opportunity to go to college. Imagine a world where every student has a role model to look up to and inspire them to keep moving forward. Imagine a world where every kid had a way to get even their most random of questions answered so they weren’t afraid to take a leap and reach for their goals. That’s what MOvE is. That’s what MOvE does.
What is MOvE? You’ve (hopefully) read all the articles, all the social media posts about what we do and what our goal is, to inspire, encourage, and educate high school students from Henry Ford Academy about college and the future. But the thing we haven’t been able to genuinely show you is the true impact MOvE has. It’s so much more than those 48 hours. The influence, the relationships, and the memories are not confined to one weekend in the summer. It’s the ripple effect afterwards. One interaction that seems so small starts the ripple that keeps moving outwards until now it’s ideally created social change.
No, when I say social change I don’t mean we find the cure for cancer or end world hunger in one weekend. No, we didn’t find the perfect way to achieve equality everywhere, but we did ignite the fire within each other and that’s where change stems from. Whether it’s telling the kid who spends all of his free time sketching that he can pursue his dream of being an artist, spending over an hour with a student talking about all the possible paths in college for their interests and talents, or sharing your own goals for the future as you all talk about where you want to be in 10 years, we lit a spark within each other. On Friday we were all sitting in a room surround by strangers, but on Sunday we parted ways from our friends, supporters, and the people who will continue to hold us accountable to our goals and dreams.
I have had the pleasure and opportunity to have worked on this summer camp from all perspectives. From the many hours in and out of the library working on curriculum and logistics to counselor training the morning the students arrived, along with four others I ate, slept, and breathed MOvE. To me, this is what MUSIC Matters was – some small summer camp we put on for a local high school. Walking out of Mojo on Sunday, May 19th, I realized that MOvE is so much more than that.
Personally, I met some of the most amazing kids I have ever known that weekend (I hope you guys are reading this now). They explained to me their struggles within all sorts of relationships, gushed over their goals of going to Harvard to study medicine, displayed their talents drawing caricatures, and told their jokes that made me laugh so hard I actually shed tears. Over the course of lunch on Saturday, I saw not only these few students but all of the students open up as they got more comfortable with the camera and I valiantly attempted to capture their multidimensional personalities that I know one day will move mountains. To me MOvE was so much more than inspiring them, because they inspired me. They reminded me why it’s so important to set your goals high and your standards even higher. They showed me to see the good in every situation and reminded me that unless it’s going to matter in five years, don’t spend more than five minutes worrying about it. They reminded me that you can do anything you put your mind to, no matter how big or how small. These kids might not even know how powerful of an impact they have, but it just goes to show how important every interaction truly is.
In the end, you can’t always find the right words to grasp something that has impacted you so greatly. MOvE moves you. Each and every student there, college and high school alike, took something from that camp. Whether it be life changing or simply a fond memory, it MOvEd us for the better. I would give so much so that everyone could have an experience like that- from both ends, but that’s not possible so I hope that after reading this you would at least get a taste and a reminder that you matter, your goals matter, your actions matter, and of course MUSIC Matters.