An important way we help ourselves is by exploring each of our lives and experiences. Sometimes we share our goals and dreams, our failures and success stories to learn, build self-esteem, and develop skills to make positive life choices. Come back to this section often where we’ll share our lives and what we learned from each other.

HITT Students thoughts on touring:

These thoughts were written down after Loften HITT Students toured to Expressions Learning Academy. They worked with students in grades 3-5 and it was the first Peer-education tour that this HITT class had participated. We hope these thoughts will inspire other students to join and anticipate touring.

“I thought today’s tour was a big success.I had fun with the kids and it was good to see them act so mature and get involved with the activities.”

“I like working with kids. I think they enjoyed our games and voluntarily joined our scenes with delight. They followed directions well, listened to us and were kind to each other, if only for a little bit.”

“At first I was thinking that is was going to be stupid, but the kids were very well mannered and you can tell they enjoyed us coming out there. I hope that we do another tour.”

“I was really nervous when we first showed up at the school because I am not that good with kids, but I loosened up a little bit as time progressed and in the end I was sad to leave.”

“My reaction to today’s performance was shock, I couldn’t believe how involved, excited, and understanding the students were.”

“I had a great time and I liked how the kids participated in everything. The students were funny and everything went right in my mind. I hope the kids had as much fun as I did.”

“Our tour seemed to flow naturally for me and I enjoyed spending time at the school. I am not normally very good participating in large groups, especially with children, but I didn’t have any problems.”

“I enjoyed acting in the scene and playing the games. It was kind of difficult getting up and talking with all of the kids watching, but now I would like to go perform again in another school.”

“My experience today touring surprised me. I enjoyed the fact that the kids participated and not once did they complain.”

“Today I learned a lot and had a lot of fun.”

“I think the students enjoyed the workshop and it brought an issue to their attention.”

“The tour was really fun and exciting and I really enjoyed the kids and the time we had with them.”

“I was very surprised how well the kids listened and participated and how respectful they were. I am very glad I had the opportunity to go.”

“The tour was awesome! It was really cool being able to hangout and have fun with the kids.”

HITT student quotes from The Glass Menagerie performance and post-performance Talk Back with cast

M: “I just wanted to thank you for putting in all the hard work & effort into the great play. . I give you 5 thumbs way up.”

A: “I want to say I like your play you did for us. I like the way you sat there and let us talk to you about the play . I feel like I know some famous actors.”

J: “I enjoyed watching the play. I also want to thank you for taking the time to . talk to us. [I] thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to talk to you.”

G: “I want to say that they couldn’t pick a better cast for The Glass Menagerie. . you have inspired me to pursue my career in acting and theatre.”

A few words from Matt Lindsay, Education Department Member and HITT Instructor at Union County Correctional Facility:

Too few young people are exposed to the arts in any significant way. We felt that it was important for these boys to see and experience a classic of contemporary theatre like The Glass Menagerie, and we were certain they would respond to it. At the talk back, they had many questions for the actors and crew, ranging from how Laura’s limp was achieved, how to handle mistakes on stage, and questions about the meaning of the play. For them, it was a chance to hear accomplished actors talk about their craft. They are all very interested in performing: when I asked them once how many of them would like to be an actor, all raised their hand! So it was great for them to be given insights into just how demanding (and rewarding) a life in the theatre can truly be. It gives me joy to see them inspired by seeing a play like The Glass Menagerie. Again, this is an experience more of our young people need to foster an appreciation for the arts.


These stories were written during a HITT Class in September of 2008 at the culmination of a week long discussion on Goals. These students had also recently been to see a production of Shakespeare’s Hamlet on the University of Florida campus. After a discussion of Hamlet’s “To be or not to be” soliloquy, the students were then asked to write their own monologue on their personal goals.

Goal Paper #1

So my goal is to stop drinking, because I have been drinking since I was 12 years old. My friend’s Mom gave me my first beer and I have been drinking ever since. I really want to stop; I know it is not good for me so I am trying hard. I have stopped hanging out with some of my friends that are really heavy drinkers. When I’m at a friend’s house I try to say no as much as I can, but sometimes it is hard. I know if I keep trying I can quit. I used to drink every weekend but now I only drink every other weekend. The thing that keeps me motivated the most is that my dad was an alcoholic and was abusive.


Goal Paper #2

Indecision, my middle name
An old enemy that rears its ugly head
Nothing is set in stone, not in my mind.

Wants and needs change from day to day
Days, weeks, months, years
Why isn’t it all clear?

I wanna scream, oh I wanna scream
For these things come in dreams
Lack of confidence, they’ll never realize

The question changes over time
What will you do? Who will you be?
I plead with myself, decide.decide.

Do you know? I don’t
Goals, I have none. Decided, I have not done
Uncertainty is what leads me

Free my mind, body, and spirit
Forever drifting
Nothing is set in stone, not in my mind.


Goal Paper #3
Goal: To stop smoking.

My friends are amazing people. But, I feel that when I’m with them, we have to smoke to have fun. I don’t feel that that is me anymore. Smoking has changed a lot about me. I used to have a smile on my face all the time, but now I don’t. Smoking has changed my attitude towards things. I used to love to do things and go places with my grandma, but now I’d much rather sleep or just sit around. I used to play hockey, not anymore. It changed my eating habits and my attitude towards my friends who don’t smoke. It’s hard for me to breath. I don’t have a care in the word about the way I treat or talk to my family or friends, I just don’t care anymore. I used to be a lot more out there and loud and crazy, but not as much anymore. I used to be able to have fun doing anything. Now my main focus is when is the next time I’m going to smoke? I don’t want it to lead to anything more. That’s just not me anymore, I’m not the same person, and I’m not the same person I used to be and I miss that.


Goal Paper #4
Goal: To get my hair license.

I’ve always wanted to do hair. It was just a hobby I enjoy doing. So, for me to make this goal possible I’ll have to go through an eight month course/training and get my hair licenses. You must be 16 years or older. I was thinking about applying for a hair school in Gainesville this summer & then once school starts again maybe go to night school if it’s possible. I always practice on my cousins, mom, friends, and sisters. When I have a new hairstyle in my head there’s always somebody around I can experiment on. Maybe one day you might sit down at a shop and get your hair done by yours truly!


Goal Paper #5
Goal: World Domination

The world is in chaos, death, war, destruction and doom. Once must rise with many to change the world for better. One must conquer not as a villain but a hero. My goal, world domination, to do this, one must go through many trials. These trials are as follows: the trial of cold, can you pass the frozen desert? The trial of speech, can you persuade the gods to loan you their strength? The trial of choice, will you control the power, or will it control you?