Student Helping Students – Peer Mentoring Conference at Naugatuck High School
EMPOWER had the pleasure of participating in a Peer Mentoring Conference at Naugatuck High School on January 12th, 2017. The Conference was organized by 3 members of the high school’s DECA Leadership Program in partnership with Naugatuck Public Schools and Naugatuck Youth & Family Services. The event focused on connecting middle school boys with 20 high school mentors; leveraging those positive relationships to combat self-esteem and self-confidence issues among male middle school students in Naugatuck. The program included opening remarks from Mayor Pete Hess, an interactive leadership presentation from EMPOWER, as well as relationship building and problem solving activities led by the high school mentors and EMPOWER. Over 60 middle school students participated in the kickoff program on Thursday. The relationships formed between the middle school students and their high school mentors will continue to be cultivated through future programs in Naugatuck.
R-J Staffers try zip lining through the trees in Middletown
EMPOWER Leadership Adventure Center had the pleasure of recently hosting Farrah Duffany and Pete Paguaga from the Meriden Record Journal for a zip line adventure and to learn more about our Fall Halloween zip lining adventure. Check out the article and video from their visit! Farrah and Pete were both awesome up on the course – both worked through some fears and completed each and every challenge they were faced with. The EMPOWER team had a blast leading them through the tree tops!
Veteran-Owned Leadership Center to Host UConn School of Business Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities
Middletown, CT (October 8, 2016) – Veteran owned business, EMPOWER Leadership Adventure Center, will host, and facilitate a leadership development adventure program for, 24 veterans as part of the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV) offered by the University of Connecticut School of Business.
On Saturday October 8, 2016, from 8:15AM to 5:00PM, UConn School of Business EBV will visit EMPOWER Leadership Adventure Center, located at 2011 South Main Street in Middletown, CT 06457. Veteran participants will take part in a series of aerial and ground-based adventure challenges designed and led by EMPOWER founder and former United States Army Ranger, Joe DeRing. The purpose of this upcoming program is to provide the veteran participants with an experiential adventure training which will supplement the curriculum of the EBV.
The EBV is a novel and ‘one-of-a-kind’ initiative designed to leverage the skills, resources, and infrastructure of higher education to offer a cutting edge, experiential training in entrepreneurship and small business management to veterans with disabilities resulting from their military service in Iraq and Afghanistan. Directed by UConn MBA Alumnus and retired Marine Corps LtCol, Michael Zacchea, the mission of the program is to open the door to entrepreneurial opportunity for our veterans, by leveraging cutting edge educational technology and principles of universal design and access to our program of instruction, in order to develop their competencies in the many steps and activities associated with creating and sustaining an entrepreneurial venture. The EBV has become an integral component of the Department of Defense’s efforts to transition military members with disabilities from military to civilian life. In 2009, the Department of the Army named the EBV as a national ‘best practice’ for programs serving soldiers and their families.
Before opening EMPOWER Leadership Adventure Center in 2009, Joe DeRing was commissioned into the U.S. Army as an Infantry Officer with the rank of second lieutenant. As a lieutenant, Joe led light and motorized platoons of up to 60 men in combat operations as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). For his efforts and the success of his teams throughout OIF from 2003-2004, Joe was presented the Bronze Star. Joe was send back overseas to support Operation Enduring Freedom in September 2006. He was sent to Afghanistan to help lead a special working group in “Effects Targeting”, and his group was charged with developing, instituting, and publishing a standard operating procedure detailing proper implementation of non-lethal war fighting measures for the Afghan Nation Army (ANA) and Afghan National Police (ANP) force. Joe led the effort to train all ANA and ANP forces across the country of Afghanistan and, for his leadership of the “Effects Working Group”, Joe received the Army’s Meritorious Service Medal.
EMPOWER Leadership Adventure Center has hosted over 70,000 participants for family-based leisure adventures, corporate team training and wellness development, youth leadership and character development, and athletic team leadership skill development.
Middletown Adventure Center Encourages Guests to Push Boundaries
Adventure experiences with a purpose at EMPOWER in Middletown. Some individuals and groups take part in adventure experiences as a way to achieve exciting, adrenaline-pumping thrills. While adventuring is typically fun for most, there are several benefits to group adventure experiences beyond thrills, laughter and excitement – including leadership skill development, improved problem solving tactics and communication, trust and relationship development, more efficient team systems of operation, and a stronger sense of a collective team as opposed to a collection of individuals.
EMPOWER’s Leadership and Team Development Adventures feature lessons derived from Founder Joe DeRing’s real-world training as a Captain and Ranger in the United States Army and from General Manager Dan Jaskot’s experience in traditional, adventure and experiential education. Combining their 15 years of field-training and professional experiences, Joe and Dan have created an Adventure Training Curriculum designed to produce results!
Adventure Center Challenges Connecticut Groups
Discover your sense of adventure at EMPOWER Leadership Adventure Center in Middletown. Adventure is defined as unusual, exciting, and sometimes hazardous exploration into unknown territory. Adventuring involves many emotions – fear, adrenaline, uncertainty, and a level of risk. Participating in positive adventure (high reward/low risk) can turn an individual’s fear and nervousness into higher levels of self-confidence, feelings of achievement, and an increased willingness to take on, and overcome, positive risks/challenges. Adventuring in groups also leads to an amazing bond forged by a group sharing the common goal of “conquering the mountain” as opposed to going around it!
Discover (or re-discover) your sense of adventure this Summer – find your mountain, make sure that the yield is positive, and get ready for excitement, adrenaline, amazing shared memories, and the undeniably addicting sense of accomplishment!