Return to Headlines

OEHS Empowerment 2017 Attracts Large Group, and Community Involvement

Oswego, Ill. (April 14, 2017) - Oswego East High School’s Made for More girls’ peer-mentoring club recently held Empowerment 2017, a goal-setting event that attracted about 75 students who believe women and girls can empower one another to rise up and make the world a better place.


The in-school field trip, held Wednesday, March 8, featured women speakers and role models from the community as well as club members who shared their stories and broke into small groups to set personal goals. The women and girls also talked about setting up a formal mentoring program with women from the community.


Xia Zuckert, an OEHS English teacher and the club’s sponsor, said Empowerment 2017 was an amazing event.


“Empowerment 2017 was very successful. So many girls wanted to be part of it,” Zuckert said. “And the women from the community who spoke shared so much of themselves. The young girls are still talking about the event and how they connected with each of the women.”


Associate Superintendent Judith Minor, who provided the kick-off keynote for the event, said that she was thoroughly impressed.


“Having mentoring opportunities such as Made for More provides our students with insights from leaders from across the community to include education, business, government and entrepreneurship.” She said. “Empowering our young girls is an effort we should all support. I was proud to be a part of Empowerment 2017 and look forward to seeing what this dynamic group of young women achieves as they continue to grow and encourage one another.”


The Made for More mission includes both a peer-mentoring program in which trained student mentors work with their peers, as well as a mentoring program that partners with adult female role models from the community to mentor girls at OEHS.


The club’s student members put together an agenda that included a diverse group of women role models from the community. In addition to Minor’s welcome, the Village of Oswego President Gail Johnson and Village of Oswego Trustee Pam Parr each gave a keynote address.


Other women participants from the community included: Christina Burns, assistant village administrator for the Village of Oswego; Entrepreneur Cheryl Ross; Lauri Doyle, School District 308 Board of Education Secretary; Kijuana Boulrece, student support coordinator for Elgin Community College, Elgin, Ill.; Belinda Brooks, education and youth coordinator and career planner for the Quad County Urban League, Aurora, Ill.: Krissy Guhl, a stay-at-home mother and restoration artist; and Angie Redmond, a figurative and portrait artist.


Empowerment 2017 was the club’s second event. Its first event, Girls Night Out, drew about 30 participants who played volleyball, basketball, and watched a movie one evening last November at OEHS.


Made for More was born in early 2016 from senior Melissa Davis’ desire to improve the atmosphere in her school community, and her conversation with Zuckert about how girls can help one another rise up and create a better world.


The club’s vision is to bring together inspirational women of diverse backgrounds from the community to guide and lead girls in goal setting toward a brighter future. It is the club’s belief that the experiences and wisdom of women in the community are invaluable in helping young girls on their path to success.


To view the complete slide show visit the OEHS web story.