Tri-Cities Voice Newspaper - What's Happening - Fremont, Union City, Newark California

April 13, 2004 > QUEST!


by Rima Mattar

Every senior at Irvington High school dreads the idea of QUEST, a required yearlong graduation project for seniors. Besides all the work and pain, QUEST does have a positive side helping a lot of people and organizations. Students are able to explore different fields of interest, which they may later pursue.

One of the huge parts of QUEST is the service project. Every senior must identify a need in the community and fulfill it in some way. Each student works with a non-profit organization and makes a difference. Here are a few innovative ideas that students have completed this year.

My topic was on advertising in women's health issues, specifically Breast Cancer. I had been doing my experience hours with William Marshak, my consultant, and Bras for Body & Soul, which is the non-profit organization, so I had a good amount of experience from different aspects. I decided to hold a free workshop with Nhemie, another senior. The workshop would raise awareness of this widespread disease. The event would be held at Curves, "Downtown Niles District", where I work.

I made flyers and distributed them to all the Curves in Fremont, Union City and Newark. The workshop was a hit with attendance of about 25 ladies. Dr. Trisha McMahon was one of the speakers. She spoke about comfort and support and made sure they knew that Bras for Body & Soul was there to support them at all times in various ways. Michelle, was the other guest speaker. Michelle is a Breast Cancer survivor and she touched everyone's heart with her "journey" and fight against Breast Cancer. The event raised about $120 from donations and the raffle which was donated to Bras for Body & Soul.

Senior, Crystal Burke chose the topic of Cosmetology and how hair and make-up affect self-esteem and physical well being. After researching and practical experience on the topic, shel decided to hold a free hair washing and cutting day for homeless people, in memory of Guillermo. She completed her service with the help of her church, Niles Foursquare Church, who donated the house next door for a few days while Crystal completed her service. Martin's Beauty Supply and Super Cuts donated all the shampoo and supplies that were needed. The hair washing and cutting days were held on every Saturday starting from February 21 through March 13. Many homeless people benefited from Crystal's service and one lady even got a complete makeover!

Derek Hallet decided to do his QUEST project on Baseball - how psychological aspects of the game can impact players' performance. With his service, he decided to help kids. Derek held a baseball camp to benefit kids and improve their baseball skills. The baseball camp was held on March 28. Many young baseball players were interested in improving their skills, so about forty five to fifty kids attended. The day started off with the defensive techniques for pitchers, outfielders, infielders and catchers. They learned how to handle certain situations and how to prepare for each play mentally and physically. Next was lunch, which included a nutrition talk! Offense was up next and it included four stations: tee work, cage soft-toss, bunting and base running. Derek's service was a success and the baseball players had a great time, while learning!

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