Name: Julie Whitehead
Hometown: Longview, Texas
College: University of North Texas
Project Transformation Site: Chapel Hill UMC
Why did you want to serve as an intern at Project Transformation?
I heard about Project Transformation through a class at UNT. I wanted to work with Project Transformation because I loved their mission. I love kids and have a passion for non-profit work.
What is the most important lesson you have learned from working with children and youth?
I have learned that if you take the time to listen and hear out a child’s worries or fears, you can help them through a problem. I have also learned kids are insanely observant and will comment about any change on a person they notice. For example, the time I accidentally dyed my hair purple, I never heard the end of it!
What is your favorite part of the Project Transformation experience?
Seeing the kids at my site improve in all areas! Ones that we had behavior problems with at the beginning slowly transformed. Other kids that had struggles with academics improved immensely! I loved getting to know all the kids at Chapel Hill.
If you could tell one story from your experience at Project Transformation, what story would you tell?
I have seen a huge change in one of our 6th grade girls. She used to argue at the drop of a hat, sass you over everything, and was extremely mean to the other kids. After multiple times of sitting and talking to her and breaking down her walls, she slowly began to change. The last day, we had a ‘field day’ theme, and she paired up with the boy no one wanted to be partners with. She also has begun helping other kids with homework and mentoring them. She has grown so much in this one year…it was great to watch!