Building Up Psychological Resumes

pile of teen girls

Rachel Simmons is the founder of the Girls Leadership Institute (GLI), a national nonprofit organization that develops leadership qualities in young girls. The GLI offers programming that engages adolescent females in healthy relationship practices, emotional intelligence, and assertive and confident self-expression. Simmons recently spoke at a TED conference about the incredible importance of positive female-to-female relationships among girls at an early age. A startling trend has been discovered: as girls grow into adolescence, their self-esteem reduces greatly. Girls begin to internalize societal pressures to be passive, modest, pleasing, and liked. With those as guiding core values, Simmons notes that young women hit a psychological glass ceiling that carries through their development. To quote Simmons, this produces a situation where “if [women’s] college applications are stamped with 21st century girl power, and they are, we also see their psychological resumes lagging generations behind.”

Shaving Cream tiny girls

We as a greater society need to instill young women with the confidence, drive, and assertion they need to live successful and fulfilling lives. This change begins at an early age and it begins in healthy female-to-female relationships. Girls need to be coached, supported, and guided to this empowered state of being, and as a counselor for young women, your impact could not be more influential. As Simmons notes, “Relationships with peers and adults offers [young women] opportunities to learn how to advocate for themselves, negotiate, and compromise.” Camp is the perfect place to put girls on a path towards fulfilling friendships, positive self-image, and healthy self-expression. Watch Simmons’ video highlighted by high schooler Claire Sannini’s personal testimony of relationship struggles, and get inspired about all the potential this summer holds.

Our 5 Favorite New Year’s Resolutions

With the new year, what do you resolve to do? Remember camp and consider these!

1. Be silly!

2. Lend a helping hand.

3. Set aside some time for relaxation.

4. Pass along some positive encouragement.

5. Keep it real.

Summer Gardening

From homemade pizza, to felafel and feta salad, to Mexican tamales, the Rockbrook kitchen staff serves up top-notch culinary creations. While earlier days at Rockbrook didn’t offer the same international variety of foods, it could boast of a bountiful, sustainable, and local food source. A 1926 RBC brochure states that the vast majority of the food used at camp was produced at the Rockbrook Farm, located across the road from camp on Greenville Highway. The farm, which was personally managed by Henry Carrier, provided all of the fixings for a balanced, healthy meal: eggs, chicken, lamb, mutton, milk, cream, butter, and vegetables. Rockbrook even cured it’s own ham and bacon for the summer.

Rockbrook currently does not have any large-scale farming, however it does have a rich garden. Located on the lower sports field, the RBC garden was started in 2009 and has been growing steadily ever since. Campers enjoy maintaining a variety of plants, and are especially excited to pick ripened vegetables, such as squash, zucchini, edamame, bell peppers, tomatoes, and beans. Once picked and washed, these vegetables are featured in the dining hall’s salad bar. Below, you’ll find a few of our favorite shots from a garden workshop this summer, where campers delighted in making tussie mussies and building a scarecrow!

How To Bring Your “A” Game

Walk in the Woods camper
Rockbrook camper Suzy demonstrates the benefits of being outside

As hardworking students, you’ve rounded the corner into that time of the school year that can be laden with academic demands. The middle of the semester can keep you busy writing papers, studying for midterms, and maybe even preparing a senior thesis. A heavier workload usually translates into longer nights in the library, yet as important as scholastic success is, don’t forget to step outside every now and then. According to child environment and behavior researcher Andrea Faber Taylor, our directed attention, which we use when concentrating on tests and work, is not a limitless resource. Cracking the books day in and and day out leaves you with a serious case of both physical fatigue and mental fatigue.

So, what’s the cure? Go outside. Taylor’s theory of attention restoration argues that “walks in nature and views of green space capture our involuntary attention, giving our directed attention a needed rest”. Your physical environment has a significant effect on your mental state, and perhaps locking yourself in the basement of the library isn’t really the answer to your quest for academic accomplishment. Make a point to sit in the sun, walk around campus, or even eat lunch outside. Mother nature might just be your best study buddy yet.