“We managed to get on what turned out to be one of the last flights leaving the country… By the end of the day all borders of the country were closed. No one in or out. Vasny saved us!”
Vasny Maldonado was nominated to apply for Summer Search by his teacher, Jan Hudson, at Mission High School in San Francisco in 1996. In present day, during the outbreak of the coronavirus, the two were reunited in an unexpected, yet meaningful way. But first, back to 1996…
Vasny Maldonado during one of his summer experiences.
Continue reading Alumnus Helps Former Teacher During COVID Crisis
The following is a guest post written by Anna Brittain, Summer Search Bay Area alumna, for National Mentoring Month.
I remember the first time I met Joan McDonald. She had a bouffant of grey-white hair, like she’d never quite made it out of the 1960s, and soft kind eyes. It was 1997. I was 15 years old and a sophomore at St. Helena High School. I was stepping into a small room filled with warm fall light to do an interview with Joan and Linda Mornell (founder of Summer Search). My high school counselor, Bruce Frank, who nominated me for the program, was standing just outside. I didn’t know what I was getting into. I sat down facing these two older women. Linda looked at me intensely and Joan smiled encouragingly. Linda asked something along the lines of, “What is it like to walk in your shoes?” And I broke down.
Continue reading Mentors Changed the Course of My Life
“For over 20 years, I witnessed the power that came from telling your story. For the person brave enough to share their story, and for the people who are fortunate enough to be in their presence.”
In the story of Summer Search, Katherine Kennedy has played many important roles. She was our founder Linda Mornell’s first hire in 1995, she was a mentor, an executive director, a fundraising guru, and a speech coach—helping students and alumni tell their story in front of hundreds of people at Summer Search signature events.
Katherine left Summer Search at the end of 2015 to start a new chapter in her professional career. Now, nearly two years later, we caught up with her to see what she has been up to, and how she is staying connected to Summer Search. Continue reading Storytelling with Katherine Kennedy
Did you know that on this date one year ago (March 1, 2015), Summer Search Founder Linda Mornell’s book Forever Changed was officially published?
In honor of the anniversary of this book — Linda’s thoughtfully-crafted collection of some of Summer Search’s most inspiring stories, and magnum opus on the benefits that summer programs and insight mentoring have on young people — we’d like to share a powerful and very personal review of Forever Changed. Continue reading Honest and Heroic Stories
As our 25th anniversary year officially comes to an end, we want to thank everyone who made this year so special.
It has been an amazing and humbling experience to look back on the past 25 years and recognizing all the lives we have transformed at Summer Search, and all the people who have helped us along the way.
2015 — a year for looking back, and a year for looking ahead: Continue reading Goodbye 2015…
‘Tis the season for giving thanks!
Here at Summer Search, we love saying “thank you.” In fact, one of our core values is to “say ‘Thank You’ seven times.”
But why seven times? This concept came from our founder Linda Mornell, who never asked for more support until she said “thank you,” seven times. So, while this idea was initially conceived as a fundraising tactic, it has inspired an organizational-wide culture of gratitude.
In that spirit, here are seven messages of thanks, from seven great, and grateful, Summer Searchers. #ThankYouX7
Continue reading Thank You x7
by Linda Mornell, Founder of Summer Search
Growing up in a small, rural community my husband and I sent our children to summer programs away from home. After their freshman year of high school, each one participated in a three-week mountaineering and white-water rafting trip in Oregon.
Continue reading Sara Can!