Learning from our youth


The efforts of the Central Cabarrus FFA club show that our community’s youth are learning more than what’s printed in textbooks, and that’s something to be proud of

It never ceases to amaze me the quality of youth we have in our community. Time and time again I’m reminded of how generous and others-serving they are.
This week was no different.

It’s the time of year when my e-mail’s inbox gets filled with activities – mostly of the outdoor variety – that various school and church groups are putting on, usually with much or all of the workforce being comprised of middle and high school aged children.

One such activity, coordinated by the FFA club at Central Cabarrus High School, drew my eye this week.

The group had organized a walk to honor a teacher, Amy Hicks, who was diagnosed in November with breast cancer just months after her mother had undergone surgery and radiation treatment for the same type of cancer.

On many levels, it was like so many similar events, highlighted by food, games and other social activities.

But there didn’t seem to be a single person at the event who thought the day was just about food, games, socializing, or even about drawing attention to and raising money for breast cancer research. The day was about showing support for a personal friend. It was about Mrs. Hicks.

Many of the students with whom I spoke at the walk expressed personal reasons for being involved. For some, Mrs. Hicks’ diagnosis was a reminder of family members and friends who have fought the same battle. For others, the diagnosis put a personal story behind a common but otherwise faceless disease.

Some shared stories of how Mrs. Hicks befriended them, and how difficult learning of her diagnosis was. Others said their first reaction was, “How can I help?”

In the end, the FFA students came together in an effort that humbled the veteran educator, and really showed the spirit and resolve of the greater community at Central.

It just goes to show that not all lessons in life come from textbooks.

Jonathan E. Coleman

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