Taking potential to the max

YOUNG LEADER: Singleton High student Rodney Cerezo, pictured with coach Jesse Nash, intends to promote the donation of stuffed toys to local hospitals.

YOUNG LEADER: Singleton High student Rodney Cerezo, pictured with coach Jesse Nash, intends to promote the donation of stuffed toys to local hospitals.

Three  Year 11 students from Singleton High have started the Max Potential Program (MPP).

PASSIONATE: Elizabeth Wells, left, with coach Sarah Lewis, a local business owner, is looking to facilitate a multicultural connect group.

PASSIONATE: Elizabeth Wells, left, with coach Sarah Lewis, a local business owner, is looking to facilitate a multicultural connect group.

MPP is a statewide program that helps students to maximise their potential in their final years at school and also encourages them to focus on the local community and ways that they can work to improve it.

Singleton High Students Elizabeth Wells, Rodney Cerezo and Zack Macdonnell along with 12 other students from the region have just completed “Connect 1”.

DRIVEN: Zack Macdonnell, pictured with coach Mark Wiblen from Singleton Council, is passionate about raising the impact of youth homelessness.

DRIVEN: Zack Macdonnell, pictured with coach Mark Wiblen from Singleton Council, is passionate about raising the impact of youth homelessness.

“The Connect 1 phase gives the chance to think about projects  which will come into focus over the next couple of months,” Hunter Valley Max Potential coordinator Julie Stevens said.

“Zack’s project will revolve around creating awareness of youth homelessness.

“Elizabeth wants to create a multicultural group where people with non-Australian backgrounds can connect. A bit like Harmony Day.

“Rodney is promoting the donation of stuffed animals for children  in hospitals.”

As part of the Max Potential process, each participant works with a coach.

Coaches are drawn from within the community, business, industry, schools and churches and guide individuals on how to maximise their lives and leadership potential.   

“Mark Wiblen from Singleton Council is coaching Zack,” Julie said.  

“Elizabeth’s coach is  Sarah Lewis,  who is a local business owner passionate about giving back to the community.

“Jesse Nash, who is coaching Rodney, is doing a Diploma in Community Services and using Max Potential as an opportunity  to practise skills he’s developing as part of his diploma.”

By September 22,  plans will have come into shape and participants  will give a  presentation at  “Connect 2” to major sponsors about what they are doing and what it means to be involved in the Max Potential Process.

MPP sponsor Singleton Council  has provided scholarship money for each of the Singleton High students. 

On November 17, Elizabeth, Rodney and Zack, along with the other Hunter Valley participants, will deliver their programs at the Max Potential Showcase, being held this year at major sponsor Cessnock Leagues Club from 3pm to 5pm.

There are 19 Max Potential programs operating across the state. Each program has a major club sponsor facilitated by long-time Max Potential partner Clubs NSW.

“The support we’ve had from sponsors, coaches, teachers and students is really great,” Julie said. 

“Jaye Sunerton, from Singleton High, has been brilliant and Geoff Walker, president of Cessnock Chamber of Commerce,  attended Connect 1 where he talked about the importance of personal leadership and he will be at Showcase on November 17 to present certificates.”