Category Archives: Testimonials

Alumni Testimonials

“I’m not the most emotional person ever. But this weekend has been one of the best of my life! I can’t believe it actually brought me to tears. I’ve met the most OUTSTANDING people, and I can’t even explain the way in which I’ve been changed…I was a doubter, but I’ve finally seen the importance of things I’d never realized before. Thank you HOBY for changing me for the better!”  – Bryeson Henry, ’15

“It’s been a year and a half since I went to the HOBY conference that changed my life for the better. I am very proud that the people I’ve met there, the future leaders of the world are doing amazing things. Whether it be leading community service events, excelling in academics/extracurriculars, or being accepted to colleges, these people are doing outstanding things! I’m especially proud that several 2013 alumni have been accepted into Ivy League schools!!! Wow! I also believe that I myself have grown as a leader and active citizen since HOBY, and owe many thanks to the speakers, counselors and fellow alumni for impacting my life!” – Marissa Carbonell, ’13

“HOBY was one of the most incredible experiences of my life so far, surrounding me with such a caliber of people that it is impossible not to strive for the stars.” – Michael Parker

Alumni Testimonial: Meet Reid

IMG_3846What can you not say about HOBY?! Other than the fact that it’s OUTSTANDING, it was life changing for me!  I attended HOBY New York West in 2010, then proceeded to attend the World Leadership Congress (WLC) in Los Angeles.  I could go on and on about the friends that I made, the bonds that haven’t been broken with a handful of people… I do have to say it gave me a whole different perspective on my life. Since attending HOBY, I’ve started community service movements with Roswell Park with its Bald for Bucks and Ride for Roswell campaigns. I’ve headed up college groups in leadership roles, such as as senate president, programming president and so much more.

The most rewarding experience ever since HOBY: Creating and developing a leadership program at the college level, as well as creating my very own seminar, highlighting how simple leadership can be!

I hope that anyone who has experienced knows exactly what I’m talking about when I say this: Never give up with anything that you do!  Be the change and always remember that it’s never over when it comes to leadership. For those who are debating on attending HOBY, stop debating and sign up. I’m glad I did and have never regretted it!

– Reid Okoniewski, ’10
Wilson High School

Alumni Testimonial: Meet Victoria

20140601_120022To me, HOBY was more than just a weekend, more than just a day off from school. For me, HOBY was life changing. Within a 3-day period I learned that as a teenager, I am not powerless, I can make a change in my world, and I learned what a bunch of teenagers could do when we work together. Basically, HOBY taught me how to be a leader.

HOBY taught me that I am not powerless by showing me what I can do if I continue on with my high school education. I listened to speakers talk about how they helped and changed lives. Not only were these stories inspiring, they were also motivating.

HOBY taught me I can change my world. HOBY taught me that I can take charge of any situation and turn it into something that I can be proud of, something to inspire others. HOBY did this by making me plan a project to help change lives.

HOBY showed me the power of teamwork by making me consult my group and brainstorm different ideas and concepts. Bouncing ideas off each other really showed me the value in working with a team instead of alone.

HOBY taught me that being a leader is more than having a good moral compass. Being a leader requires inspiration, passion, and teamwork. Qualities you will find at ANY HOBY conference. HOBY taught me to be an outstanding leader, and I took that home with me to make more leaders.

– Victoria Brooks, ’14
Our Lady Of Mercy