Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Edison State students interact with BRC residents

Edison State students left to right, are Ruby Sacher, Julie Roseberry, Cierra Kaufhold, Zach Bevins, Tamera Mendenhall, Cory Jefferis and RJ Rabi Gullet. Photo Courtesy of Jan Teaford, Brethren Retirement Community.
GREENVILLE—Communications students at Edison State Community College’s Darke County Campus have been going into local schools for several years, talking to elementary and intermediate students about drugs, bullying… even the values of being courteous and respectful.

Edison State’s summer Fundamentals of Communication class entered new territory this year, talking to Brethren Retirement Community residents about the challenges of the generations.

“You’ve lived through these decades,” the students said. “You have dealt with them, survived them.” They noted the Great Depression and World War II, and then offered brief summaries of the successes and challenges of each decade through today’s issues of racial tension and terrorism. Their point?

“You have lived through so much and dealt with so much... what advice do you have for us as we deal with our challenges,” they asked the seven residents in attendance.

“As a nation, we need to bring God back into our lives,” said one resident. The others immediately voiced their agreement. From their perspective, it was as simple as that.

The students, without exception, considered the presentation a successful experience, not only having a respectful offering to different generations but also in teamwork. While they were happy with the way their assignment went, they had a bonus their counterparts in the fall and spring semesters don’t have.

“What I really liked,” one of the students said, “was sitting down with the residents and simply talking.” The other students agreed. “We got a chance to get to know each other… learned a lot more than we did standing in front of them with our presentations.”

Bob Robinson, Edison DCC communications instructor, said the speech was the capstone of the course. It incorporated all of the elements of communication fundamentals – from research, ethics and critical thinking to teamwork and diversity – needed to be successful in today’s world.

“Today’s professionals – more than any time in the past – need to be able to work as a team and understand the issues of human diversity, not only among themselves but also those with whom they are communicating,” said Robinson. “They need to understand the roles that these values play in their dealings with others.”

In the fall and spring, Edison State students make their capstone presentations to students in kindergarten through sixth grades. This summer their audience consisted of adults in their 70’s and 80’s.

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