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The path to success

“Houston, we’ve had a problem here”. So rang out those chilling words on April 13th, 1970, when the world first learned that the Apollo 13 manned mission to the moon was in jeopardy. An oxygen tank had exploded, resulting in a loss of oxygen, battery power, and water, all this with the spacecraft and crew roughly 200,000 miles from the earth. One oxygen tank had completely emptied, and the second was depleting rapidly. They were running out of water, and they had to figure out how to keep the air inside the spacecraft scrubbed of carbon dioxide. They also still had to get back to earth. The tale of how they did, and of the obstacles they overcame, is one of heroic achievement in exploration and engineering, of a magnificent collaboration, and stands as testimony to the human spirit. Fortunately, we seldom if ever will be taxed to the degree that those astronauts were, But, in small measure we face challenges each day, challenges which require ingenuity, collaboration, and communication. These challenges require perseverance and determination also, a toughness of spirit that is focused on the task at hand, on succeeding and success.
At Village Glen, we strive to develop this sense of determination, this mental toughness in our students. We ask them to collaborate, to communicate, to learn from their failures and to use them as a platform, a springboard to success. Whether in engineering design or robotics, whether in programming or environmental science, we engage them in projects that challenge their conceptions and assumptions about themselves and the world. We want them to believe in themselves, and each other, to have a sense that there is little that stands in their way but their own self-imposed limits. In this way we support their growth, their learning, and their education, and prepare them for those moments of failure on the path to success.

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