I heard about HOBY when I was a sophomore in high school. I was given an application to fill out and with the pushing from a friend I frantically filled it out before the deadline. I was interviewed by a group of teachers and chosen as the alternate. HOBY decided that year to accept the alternates as well, so I set out to go to HOBY with not a clue what it was.
I arrived at Gonzaga and was pulled out of my car. The instant I was welcomed by everyone I just wanted to run back into the car. I had decided that this was going to be the longest 4 days of my life! After the first day, I felt like I had found life-long friends and began to see the potential that I had as a leader. HOBY did so much for me the first year that I went, but it was truly in my 2nd year as a TA when I realized that I could be a leader of leaders. I was able to have a place where I could be exactly who I was in front of over a hundred people. I spoke in front of them and was accepted. It was that weekend that I knew that I was a leader, that I held within me a voice with ideas worth sharing.
After leaving HOBY I became a leader in my school. Community service also became a major part of my life. The development of leadership skills in my life opened many doors. If it were not for HOBY I do not believe I would have been able to receive the scholarships that I did that allowed me to go to George Fox University (where I graduated from last spring!) This year will be my 8th HOBY seminar and I can say with full confidence that each one has changed my life. It has challenged my thinking, encouraged me to dream bigger, and given me amazing relationships with fellow leaders that supported me to accomplish more. I cannot say enough about the role HOBY has played in my life