Upward Bound at Texas Tech University

Upward Bound Youth Program – Texas Tech University

On Saturday, February 3, 2017 the Upward Bound Program engaged the services of youth motivational speaker, Jeff Yalden to inspire and motivate their teens.  The event was held at The Campus of Texas Tech University and Jeff is a big fan of Texas Tech for the time he met Marsha Sharpe, legendary girls basketball coach.

Jeff started off his talk praising the students for coming in on a Saturday when their friends were home sleeping. When Jeff opened up he talked about how he doesn’t like how Upward Bound labels the kids as at-risk. Jeff said, “Aren’t we all at-risk?” Right away, Jeff really connected with his audience because they knew Jeff cared about them and didn’t want them to listen to the labels that comes with being a part of Upward Bound. Jeff also praised Upward Bound because it does give opportunity, but it was the teens that engage the services and take advantage to want to better themselves.

From the opening minutes, Jeff talked about wanting to be better and doing better in everything they do. Jeff was quick to talk about three things that have been instrumental in his life: Self Respect, Attitude, and Choices. As he talked you could hear a pin drop immediately. Jeff is a presence that can captivate an audience in a heartbeat. He spoke with the perfect combination of truth and humor that kept his audience engaged to his every word.

“Take Time To Think”, is the mantra that I use when I speak with teens,” says Jeff. “When you touch the heart, the mind will follow,” Jeff said when he talked about how he connects to his teen audience. Jeff continued to say, “I am real. I am a trusting and caring adult that has an hour of their life and I want to make the most of that time. I love my work and speaking to teens.”

Jeff spoke to the teens from 9:30 am to 11:00 am and stuck around to make sure all the kids were able to get a picture taken with Jeff.

The Upward Bound Youth Program provides opportunities for youth to succeed in their pre-college performance and ultimately in their higher education pursuits. Upward Bound serves: high school students from low-income families; and high school students from families in which neither parent holds a bachelor’s degree.

The goal of Upward Bound is to increase the rate at which participants complete secondary education and enroll in and graduate from institutions of postsecondary education.

Notable alumni of Upward Bound programs include: Oprah Winfrey, John Quiñones, Angela Bassett, Jose Hernandez, Troy Polamalu, Kenny Leon, Donna Brazile, Patrick Ewing, Henry Bonilla, Gwen Moore, Viola Davis.

“The Upward Bound Program is a great program that serves many communities and gives teens an opportunity and that is great,” said Jeff.

To find out more information about youth speaker and high school motivational speaker, Jeff Yalden, please visit his website at www.JeffYalden.com.

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