Lucie Rosenthal, Copywriter
This week, MUSIC Matters had the chance to sit down with Sophomore Matt Szuromi, the 2017-2018 head of MoVE: A Michigan Overnight Experience. After 4+ years of planning, MUSIC Matters finally launched MoVE, the 2-day, 1-night summer camp, where 30 students from Henry Ford Academy in Detroit were able to have the opportunity to visit the University and get a glimpse of the college experience by touring campus, building friendships, and learning valuable information about the college application process from University officials and current students.
Matt explained that MOvE centers around three main goals: to explore the University of Michigan campus and come to feel comfortable picturing oneself in higher education, to develop a better understanding of what civic leadership is and one can act as a positive leader in their community, and to improve the goal-making processes and increase one’s understanding of the connections between choices today and long-term future goals and realities. With this, the students were able to attend financial and career counseling sessions, explore the U of M campus and Ann Arbor, and received a personal tour of the Big House.
Though, one of Matt’s favorite parts of the experience was just getting to know the kids through bonding activities and hanging out with them. “The kids were four or five years younger than me, but at the same time, they’re still teenagers, so at some base level they’re kind of your peers. It was fun to just sit there and just talk about music. Sometimes we would just throw on music and dance. It was really fun and they were really cute. Throughout it, it became less and less of a job.”
Matt found the entire MOvE experience to be extremely rewarding. “I think it’s just nice to give the kids an opportunity that they don’t normally get. And not all of them are going to even go to college, but even for those kids, it’s nice that they can just come here for a couple days and get a little more freedom than they do at home. Being on a college campus, sleeping in your dorm, hanging out with your friends more than your parents...it’s a cool thing.”
MoVE received overwhelmingly positive feedback from the campers and the counselors and left the MUSIC Matters team with many ideas on how to expand the camp and build a better relationship with Henry Ford Academy. Matt also mentioned that the MUSIC Matters team will be going to the high school later this semester and giving a presentation on the summer camp, which will be the kickoff of MoVE Mentors, a program where the students who attended the camp will be mentors for younger Henry Ford students. This will allow the older students to have opportunity to complete their high school’s community service requirement while giving the younger students an idea of the values and information that were taught at the camp. MUSIC Matters is also hopes to host closer to 50 students this summer, with an extra day added on so that the students are able to do even more activities and hopefully hear from some big-name speakers from the music community.
Just like the students who got to have this experience, MoVE is looking like it is going to have an extremely bright future.