It's All Academic- August Core Focus

Setting goals, establishing good study habits and surrounding yourself with positive people are keys to academic success. This was the message ROPP candidates heard over and over through different messengers during this month's core focus on Academics!

We started the day on the UT Austin campus. We met at the Littlefield Fountain that Sis. Lisa explained she lived very close to as a student during her college years.

The day started with our traditional bible lesson taught by Bro. Rowland. He shared the familiar story of David and Goliath found in 1 Samuel 17, to remind ROPP candidates that when faced with life's challenges, faith in God is the best weapon!

Bro. Dr. Eric and one of his Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity brothers shared a powerful presentation on the importance of higher education. Candidates shared their future aspirations (Zuri: beauty salon owner, Tiffany: teacher/ professional cheerleader, Sterlin: basketball player, Leander: undecided) and talked about the decisions they'll need to make now to make them come true.

Lady Longhorn Imani McGee-Stafford shared what life was like as a student athlete. She explained that her secrets to success are not following the crowd and making time for both her studies and time with her friends. She shared that scholarships are important, as they made college possible for herself and several other family members.

The morning wrapped up with a presentation by Allie Capes of UT Outreach. She described how the program partners with high school students in the Austin Metro area to prepare them for college. She shared a valuable timeline of what students can do starting in freshman year to make them eligible for scholarships and prepared for the challenges of college life.

We toured the campus and visited the statues that honor prominent African-Americans: Barbara Jordan and Martin Luther King, Jr.


Then, on to the home of the Mighty Rams, Huston-Tillotson University!

Here, current HTU students took the ROPP candidates on a tour of the campus, including an exclusive peek into the men and women's dorms. Warm words of encouragement and support were shared with the candidates and every student seemed extremely proud to be an HT Ram!

Eat Well and Support ROPP this Sunday!

***UPDATE*** The Hot Potato Sale was a success! Every single potato was sold (or eaten by the ROPP-ites) and we had a great time in the Lord during the sale. With Sis. Ardtria's added hands in the mix, we look forward to even more great days like this! Thanks to all of the ROPP family and friends who came out and purchased potatoes. The orders came in fast and furious, and the kitchen crew was ready to handle them! We can do ALL things through Christ!


The 2013-2014 Rites of Passage Program Candidates!!!

The invitations have been extended and accepted and the 2013-2014 ROPP candidates are established.
This year's candidates will experience a wide range of activities and relationships that will enhance their personal development and position them to succeed at whatever goals they establish for themselves.

Here they are:

Leander Brieon Thompson
Leander is a sophomore at McCallum High School where he is a student volunteer and a member of the McCallum Knights track team.  He is a member of the South Austin Neighborhood Center and enjoys listening to music, taking walks and hanging out with his friends in his spare time.
At Metropolitan, Leander is an active member of YPD and was recognized as an Outstanding Student in the 2013 Confirmation Class. Leander is the grandson of Juanita Maxfield.

Leander said:
"I feel that ROPP will be a good experience for me because I heard it's the transition into young adulthood. This will help me grow physically and mentally. This will also teach me different skills that I can use in the real world. I'm just excited about the things we are about to learn and the challenges we are about to take on. I feel confident about the ROPP requirements. I know I will be able to meet them for the most part. Of course, things happen, but hopefully everything goes well. I'm looking forward to working with everyone this year."

Tiffany Mariah Henderson
Tiffany is the daughter of Gerald and Mary Henderson and the granddaughter of the late Gerald Henderson and Carrie Henderson. Tiffany has served as Metropolitan YPD Financial Secretary, is a praise dancer and was a member of the 2013 Confirmation class. She is a sophomore at Smithville High School. She is a Smithville cheerleader and tennis player and is also a member of the Smooth Moves dance company in Smithville. Tiffany has been a Girl Scout for years and volunteers with the Family Crisis Center.When she is not busy doing any of these things, Tiffany enjoys hanging out with her friends and family. 
Just FYI: Tiffany enjoys cooking and helping others. She HATES spiders!

Tiffany said:
"I think ROPP would be a good experience for me. The lessons that we will be learning and going over this year can help me and strengthen me in many ways. I'm very excited to learn new things and experience things that I normally don't do or see.
The requirements will be taken very seriously because it is important that I get everything out of ROPP as I can. We are going to be the example for next year ROPP candidates, so we need to  know our stuff at all times just in case somebody needs an update. :0)
I believe ROPP will help me in my spiritual and everyday life."

Sterlin Rivers
Sterlin is the son of Monic Atkinson and the grandson of Patricia Atkinson. Sterlin is a freshman at Elgin High School where he is an all around athlete, playing on the basketball and football teams and running on the track team.  Outside of school, Sterlin is a member of the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU), playing with the Capital City Ballers. Staying physically active is one of Sterlin's favorite things to do. When he has time, he goes to the local rec center and takes energizing walks in his neighborhood.

Sterlin said:
"I think that the ROPP program will be a good experience for me to connect with Father God and learn different aspects of life. I think that ROPP will be fun and interesting. To be honest, I feel that the ROPP requirements come with responsibility and being flexible with my planning will help me fulfill the requirements as a ROPP participant."

Zuri Anaya Davis
Zuri is the daughter of Malachi Davis and Lisa Grant Davis and the granddaughter of Rev. Hector Grant and Ms. Hertha Black Grant. Zuri is a 9th grader at Harmony Science Academy- North Austin where she is regularly recognized for her strong character and positive attitude. Zuri has been a member of the HSA-NA track and basketball teams and plans to include cross country in the coming year. Zuri is active in the youth ministry at Metropolitan, serving as a youth leader of the Praise Dance ministry, Secretary for the YPD, and shed recently graduated from the 2013 Confirmation Class.

Zuri said:
"I think ROPP will teach me how to be a better leader. I think is better to lead than to follow. I think it will also give me a lot of experiences with different things. I also hope it will help me mature." I think that meeting the requirements will be a little challenging, but I am willing to take it. I feel if I do, I will become a more responsible and mature young lady. I think ROPP will push me to more involved in things and find ways to be more helpful."