Rashad Cain joined UNL Atlanta when he was in the 8th grade. Today, he is a graduate of Georgia State University with plans to go onto grad school. As a peer trainer for Usher’s New Look, Rashad was afforded the opportunity to travel to China in 2013 with other UNL students. On the trip, he job shadowed at General Electric and trained youth in Hong Kong and Shanghai in UNL’s Powered by Service Leadership Curriculum. Each student trained in UNL’s PBS curriculum receives a local leadership certification backed by Emory Goizueta Business School. Check out these excerpts from his blog about the training experiences.
Hong Kong Day 3/8/2013 PBS Training
The day we have been waiting for, the day we have prepared for and the reason for being in China; to certify fellow youth leaders to tomorrow for today. When preparing for trainings I always sit back and think about what type of crowd will be in the room. Usually most of my trainings most of the kids are shy at first and don’t open up until the middle of the training most times because they have reached a full place of comfort in everyone around them if they don’t already know them. The only difference with this training versus other trainings is that this is my first International experience. The group was a very diverse mixture of individuals who came seeking a better path, seeking a desire to make an impact. That difference was felt early on. Everyone got going and by the end of the training they did not want to leave. I feel we all learned enough from each other due to our open dialog and being open about our various walks of life and issues presented in our communities. We all live on opposite ends of the world but our communities see similar scenarios that can be effectively changed; we just need leaders to step up and that is just what PBS ensures. The training allows for the service pillar to be exemplified as well as talent.
UNL Shanghai– PBS is my Middle Name
It is time to get Powered by Service! Today is the day for our first training. Before going to this school on the outskirts of Shanghai, we had no idea of what to expect. It took a very long time to arrive but on the way to the school, the scenery changed drastically. We reached the neighborhood that surrounded the school it was pretty massive in size. Buildings were in bad condition and some buildings I could se right through. One building seemed to be a family business but the front façade was somewhat torn down. I could see the front part of the store but in the room behind it was just a bed in a small room that I could assume the family lived in and beyond that was the back door. Some buildings were completely destroyed. Before walking into the school I was thinking that some of the kids would be shy, standoffish, and some just sad. We walked and a bolt of energy and smiling faces hit me. The youth were enjoying themselves and each other. These guests walking in also fascinated them but they looked up in great spirits. The bell rang and everyone quietly went to his or her class. Not saying anything about my country but I had never seen children their age in my community so enthusiastic about learning and they were very mature for their ages. As we approached the class that we would be working with, we found out that we have minor issue; the youth are not very good in English. We needed a translator but our translator needed a translator. This was a challenge but it was something that we dealt with and I believe made us better individuals. We reinvented the training three times but at the end we got our point across and everyone was happy. What was most exciting is that most of the youth’s aspirations were to become successful and get into prestigious school, make some good money and help the poor. That was a very warm feeling to know they wanted to come back and help uproot their communities issues. After the training we visited Acorn International and toured their facility and learn about their industry, company, and spent time with the founder Robert Rouche. After Acorn we visited Fanstang and met Adam Roseman. He has been a New Look supporter and helped us with aspects of the trip. We were able to meet him, tour the Fanstang office and ask as many questions as we wanted.