I never thought I’d have to do hard time, but somehow, I wound up in a jail cell anyway with half of the new Ryan Nece Student Service program juniors. We were tasked with breaking out, and after an hour of ugly orange jump suits and excellent sleuthing we managed to escape and go about our lives as free law-abiding citizens. When I told my friends my plans to go the escape room, a lot of them questioned what it had to do with a student service program. What could escaping jail have to do with serving our community? I know the two seem completely unrelated, but the Ryan Nece foundation is about serving our community by being an effective team and using critical thinking skills. The escape room is about having fun, but it is also about building a relationship with your peers and relying on each other to help solve a problem. It is a fun and exciting representation of what our new juniors will be doing throughout every volunteer project and meeting for the next two years.

I hope the new juniors understand how proud I and the other seniors are of you, and how we fully expect you to give this program as much effort as possible so that you may grow and impact the lives of as many people as possible. The more effort you put into these next two years, the more you will get out of it. Never be afraid to go the extra mile, and if you need help or advice, Shelley, Allison, and the senior class will always be there to help you out. The seniors may seem scary or strange but we get what you’re going through and we have experience that you can benefit from. I’m always available to you guys and all it takes is a group me chat or an email. Though I only got to meet half of you, I can tell that this group will form a strong bond just as the senior class has. I know it can be difficult to drive and spend so many hours attending meetings or going to service projects, but you will learn lessons that will stay with you for the rest of your life. The feeling of helping others and doing good in your community will outweigh the frustration of 5:00 traffic.

– Chloe Johnson