Over 250 sixth-grade students walked toured Taylor’s campus on Tuesday, as part of an event called “Walk into My Future.”
The students of Jay County schools were led by sophomore elementary education majors as they walked around campus. The children observed classrooms, viewed different spots around campus, saw inside dorm rooms and ate in the DC.
Ben Hotmire, chair of Taylor’s education department said that “Walk into My Future” is a program that encourages families and children to continue their education after high school, whatever that may be.
The sixth graders also went to Odle Arena, where the education department had an ESPN video of Silent Night playing on loop for the children before they saw where it all happens.
“(The children) are really excited to be here,” Hotmire said. “Any time to get out of the classroom, any field trip is exciting.”
Seeing the sixth graders walk around campus was a blast from the past for sophomore Aylin Montes because she was a sixth grader touring campus several years ago. Now a student at Taylor, her younger cousin is among the many that were on Taylor’s campus.
“I come from Jay County, and that’s where we were told ... they were going to take a bunch of little sixth graders to a college,” Montes said. “We were all so excited because, you know, (we were) sixth graders, twelve years old and going to a college. It was fun.”
Little did she know several years later she would be a student at the very school she visited for the first time in sixth grade.
The Taylor students showing the Jay County students around campus played a game of kickball with them. However, according to Montes, the students were only focused on one thing.
“I remember everyone talking about how amazing the ice cream was at Taylor, so we were all so excited for that,” Montes said.
Not only did sixth graders get the chance to come see Taylor’s campus, but so did 100 kindergarteners from Blackford County schools. There was a special surprise planned for the kindergarteners.
“They eat lunch (in Euler),” Hotmire said. “So the Trojan will make an appearance … the kindergartners really love getting pictures with the Trojan and that sort of thing.”
The students of Blackford County also went around campus on a tour, participating in a Zumba class led by Taylor students.
Phil Ford, president of the board of Jay County Schools, said that “Walk into My Future” is an event that is very important for the students. He said it is a good opportunity for them to set some goals for the future.
Not only is it a great opportunity for the students of Jay and Blackford County, but it is a great way for Taylor to thank the schools for their partnership with Taylor.
“We do really appreciate the partnership with those school systems,”Hotmire said. “... They host us a lot, for our students have practicums a lot. We go to schools in Blackford County and in Jay County so it’s really nice for us to host back and to say thank you for all those times that they host us.”