Reflections and Resolutions

January 3, 2017

by Kelly Gray, Administrative Assistant

The end of one year and the beginning of a new one always bring about the opportunity to reflect, as well as make resolutions for the future. At the end of 2016, IEA staff took some time to look back our work, our programs, and some of the most memorable moments of the year:

Reflections and Resolutions

“One of the highlights of the year for me was how quickly and enthusiastically the 30 new 2016 CDB Scholars exchanged e-mails with each other, introducing themselves to their classmates with gusto—and including ME as part of the thread.  It didn’t seem to matter whether a Scholar was an introvert or extrovert; they all dove in and freely talked about their passions in their own unique voices.  It has been a delight to get to know this class and help them navigate their way through each individual high school application process.”

-Bonnie Raskin, Program Manager, Caroline D. Bradley Scholarship

Summer Academy 9

“During the summer, I had the chance to take the lunch shift at Academy, a free hour for kids who take classes all day to eat and play. It was a great opportunity to talk to some bright young minds about their interests, see them interact and develop friendships, and even play some games with them. Since my work at IEA is more behind-the-scenes, I don’t get as many chances to interact with kids in our programs, so that lunch hour was a nice treat in the middle of a hectic season.”

-Nicole LaChance, Marketing and Communications Coordinator


“One of my favorite moments at camp (Yunasa Michigan) this year was participating in a music improvisation workshop led by counselor Chris Jones. Everyone did an amazing job improvising rhymes and singing along. Yunasa is such supportive and inviting community that even the shyest participants loosened up and got into the game.

Morgan Carrion, Assistant to the President


“I was delighted to receive this note from an EXPLORE parent during the program….”

After going through a year of rigorous academic preparation for various AP and other college level tests, it can be taxing on their curiosity and zeal to learn as college admission requirements weigh heavily on their mind. It is a welcome change to have real life exploration and training which rekindled his intellect and he is thoroughly enjoying the experience.

-Niña Abonal, Program Coordinator, EXPLORE


“One of my favorite times of year is always the staff retreat.  This is the time the team really connects on a deeper level, where lifelong bonds are formed and the direction of IEA is solidified for the coming year.  I sort of think of it as the staff’s own Yunasa.  While each year there is dancing and singing at the end of the retreat, similar to “The Dance” at Yunasa/West, this year I felt that the team got to the heart of something intrinsic in our experience of working at IEA; and that is, the whole reason we do what we do.  We came together and defined the underlying truth behind WHY we are each here at IEA, and I feel we are a stronger team because of it.  I am excited to see this clarity influence all of our actions, efforts and communications with the children we serve and their families, and with each other.  2017 will be an exciting year for all of us!”

-Zadra Rose Ibanez, Director of Operations

These are just a few of the wonderful moments we shared with IEA participants, parents, and colleagues in 2016. As we begin 2017, we resolve to continue to work to provide the highest level of services for gifted youth while strengthening the bonds of the IEA community.

Please share your memorable IEA moments from 2016 or tell us your New Year’s resolutions for 2017!

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