• Wed. Jun 7th, 2023

3 La Jolla Higher seniors strike Gold in addressing wellness issues


May 26, 2023

With graduation roughly two weeks away, 3 La Jolla Higher College seniors have accomplished one more purpose they’ve been functioning toward: the Girl Scout Gold Award.

Ashlyn Brunette, Sophie Hochberg and Samantha Ponticello have completed projects for the Gold Award, the highest honor in Girl Scouts, which calls for each and every girl who attempts it to determine a difficulty, strategize a strategy to address it and conduct 80 hours of neighborhood service to execute the strategy.

The 3 girls — each and every of whom has been in Girl Scouts due to the fact kindergarten — also had to perform with a mentor, place with each other and lead a group and create a final report on their projects.

“There’s a lot of leadership and teamwork involved,” Hochberg stated.

The awards ceremony is in June.

Ashlyn Brunette

To earn her Gold Award, Brunette presented a lacrosse camp for about 50 elementary- and middle college-age girls in her neighborhood immediately after getting that in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, kids she babysat felt isolated from buddies.

“[Their] parents had been noticing these unfavorable mental wellness effects,” Brunette stated.

She targeted the lacrosse camp for girls close to “the age exactly where I was joining sports teams and meeting new people today,” she stated. The girls had been “missing a important time [for] joining sports.”

The camp taught lacrosse fundamentals and provided “sit-down conversations with the girls about fundamental elements of mental wellness, like help groups, strain, managing time” and far more, Brunette stated.

Brunette, who played lacrosse for La Jolla Higher, stated she received good feedback from parents and plans to repeat the camp this summer season just before she leaves to attend UCLA.

Sophie Hochberg

Hochberg, who will attend Vanderbilt University, is interested in majoring in psychology and wanted to strategy her Gold Award project in that field, tying in her like of ice skating.

The outcome was a “mental wellness boot camp” for student-athletes.

“I realized that mental illness for sports players … is not anything that is seriously addressed as a society,” she stated.

Hochberg gathered a sports psychologist, a meditation instructor and a nutritionist to speak to a group of about 25 of her peers about mental illness especially for student-athletes — which includes strategies to cope with and overcome it.

“Everyone talked about their personal experiences if they wanted,” she stated.

Hochberg shared the details for 4 weeks at a booth at the La Jolla Open Aire Marketplace, providing out pamphlets with a summary of the guidance gleaned at the camp.

Samantha Ponticello

Ponticello made a site to guide people today immediately after a loved 1 suffers a stroke.

The internet site, afulllifeafterstroke.com, includes ideas for identifying the indicators of a stroke and guidance for assisting a person by means of the healing course of action.

Ponticello was moved to get started the project immediately after her grandmother had a stroke.

The site consists of every thing Ponticello and her family members discovered immediately after the stroke, along with details from a stroke help particular person.

She also hosted a booth at the Open Aire Marketplace to assist educate people today about the indicators of a stroke and produced posters illustrating the acronym Quickly for face drooping, arm weakness, speech difficulty and time to get in touch with 911.

“I place these about La Jolla for people today to see,” she stated.

Ponticello stated stroke victims and their family members members would method her at the market place to create down the site address.

Ponticello, who will attend Syracuse University, stated she will update the site as she learns far more. ◆

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