What Is A TEL Workshop?

By Kimberly Gonzalez
SNPJ Associate Editor

As an SNPJ blogger, I sometimes forget that not all of our readers are members of the Society. Don’t get me wrong – that’s definitely not a bad thing! While it’s great to use this blog to communicate with our current members, it’s pretty cool to have this as a platform to reach out to non-members as well. This blog is often used discuss SNPJ’s fraternal benefits and activities for both our youth and adult members, and while members know exactly what we’re talking about, some non-members may be kind of lost.

That being said, I wanted to take a moment to highlight just one of SNPJ’s fraternal benefits, the Teens Experience Leadership (TEL) Workshop. If you’ve recently thought about enrolling your child or grandchild in the SNPJ, the TEL Workshop is just another membership benefit that you can add to the “pro” column on your decision-making list. So, what the heck is the TEL Workshop? I'll let Fraternal Director Kevin Richards explain all the ins and outs of the TEL Workshop through this easy-to-follow Q&A format:

When and where is the TEL Workshop held?
This year’s TEL Workshop will be held July 18-20 at the SNPJ Recreation Center in the Borough of SNPJ, Pa. — between Youngstown, Ohio, and New Castle, Pa.

How can my child attend the TEL Workshop?
The TEL Workshop is open to all 13- to 17-year-old SNPJ members. Your child must have an SNPJ insurance policy in force at the time of the workshop. Lodges and Youth Circles are eligible to send delegates to the TEL Workshop based on their number of youth members. Contact your Lodge secretary or Youth Circle director if you are interested in attending. If your Lodge or Circle already has a delegate, the Fraternal Director will find another Lodge in your region for you to represent.

How much does it cost?
Once your child is selected as a delegate, all travel expenses (airfare, mileage, tolls, etc.) are covered by SNPJ. Once your child reaches the SNPJ Recreation Center, all meals and lodging are also paid for by SNPJ.

What happens after my child is elected to represent his/her Lodge or Circle at the TEL Workshop?
Once the Lodge or Circle delegate election form is received at the Home Office, the Fraternal Director will e-mail an introductory packet to each delegate. The packet will include instructions for making travel arrangements as well as general information about the TEL Workshop weekend.

What will my child do during the TEL Workshop?
An icebreaker session is planned during Friday’s dinner to introduce the entire group. Your child will also be served breakfast, lunch and dinner on Saturday, and breakfast and lunch on Sunday. While we can’t specify the TEL Workshop activities, you should know that your child will participate in many teamwork and leadership activities. The TEL Workshop ends on Sunday morning with an awards program that parents are invited and encouraged to attend.

Who will be there?
An average of 30-40 SNPJ youth members between the ages of 13 and 17 from across the United States attend the TEL Workshop. In addition, we usually have around 10 SNPJ young adult members who serve as Team Leaders (counselors) throughout the weekend. Delegates also have an opportunity to meet the SNPJ Executive Officers and members of the SNPJ Recreation Center staff.

How will my child get there?
All travel plans will be coordinated by the Fraternal Director. TEL delegates who arrive by car will be reimbursed by SNPJ for mileage, tolls, etc., for ground transportation up to 500 miles one way from the SNPJ Recreation Center. Delegates who require airline transportation must make their own travel arrangements through the Fraternal Director.

What should my child bring?
The attire for the TEL Workshop is very casual. Jeans and shorts are ideal. There are many hands-on activities that your child will perform, so be sure to pack comfortable clothes. Linens will be provided for those delegates who are flying to the TEL Workshop; delegates who arrive by car should bring their own linens and towels. The SNPJ Recreation Center has an Olympic-size swimming pool, and since some of the activities may involve the pool, please bring a swim suit. It has been known to get cool in the evenings, so it might be a good idea to bring a light jacket.

Where will my child stay?
TEL Workshop delegates are housed in the Recreation Center cabins. Typically there are four to six delegates in each cabin, and all cabins are chaperoned by an adult Team Leader.

How will my child benefit from attending the TEL Workshop?
In addition to the many leadership and teamwork skills that your child will bring home, they’ll also learn about the many benefits they are entitled to simply by belonging to SNPJ. They’ll also meet other SNPJ members their age from across the country.

For more information on the TEL Workshop or any of SNPJ’s fraternal programs, please contact Fraternal Director Kevin Richards at krichards@snpj.com or 1-800-843-7675 ext. 144.

blog comments powered by Disqus