College students offer day out for local girls

MIDDLEBURY — The highly successful Sister-to-Sister program at Middlebury College is hosting its 12th summit for middle school girls on Saturday, Nov. 14, from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m at Kirk Alumni Center on the college campus.
Sister-to-Sister brings together middle school girls from Bristol, Middlebury and Vergennes with female Middlebury College students. In a one-day summit and monthly follow-up events during the rest of the school year, the students develop activities that encourage girls to try new things outside of the classroom (art, music, dancing, yoga, journaling, etc.). Sister-to-Sister also focuses on discussions of such topics as body image, relationships, and identity.
A national program originally conceived by the American Association of University Women, Sister-to-Sister works to develop strategies that support girls. The program recognizes that in addition to teachers and textbooks, achievement is affected by what happens in the hallways, between classes and even outside of school. Sister-to-Sister strives to make a positive difference by giving a voice to the needs and interests of middle school girls.
The program provides a “safe space” to talk about the challenges that girls face in this day and age. It enables girls to develop friendships with other girls, even if they don’t go to the same school.
The program is supported by roughly 100 volunteers and financial sponsors such as Chellis House (Middlebury College’s Women’s Resource Center), Middlebury College’s Community Engagement Center, and private donors.
“Sister-to-Sister allowed me to get involved in the Middlebury community by connecting me with fellow students, faculty and staff members, volunteers and most importantly, middle school girls,” says Grace Giles, a Middlebury College graduate, who was involved with the program for three years. “Every generation represented in our sisterhood is experiencing the environment we live in through a different lens. When we communicate our perspectives, our lives become so much richer.”
All events are free. To register or organize transportation, please call Karin Hanta at 443-5937 or email [email protected].

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