Welcome to OYO Academy!  

I have what you might call a Type A personality! I spent 20 years in the media industry as an executive with various roles and titles helping me stay organized as a working mom of 2 awesome kiddos. I spent the last 12 years of my career at E! Entertainment working in various capacities. I remember my boss told me once I would be taking over for a colleague who was going on maternity leave and he said he can “always throw me in the deep end and I know how to swim.” That was pretty much my entire career where it ended as the President of News and Network Strategy. 

Eventually, the needs at home versus the demands in the office and travelling helped me decide to step back and spend more time in my home, my happy place. I went from boardroom meetings to carpool pick up and dinner making, it was a big transition! In a speech I made to my colleagues as I left the company, I told them I was most excited about cleaning out my basement and organizing my kitchen cabinets. I was super serious!

When I did the inventory of “what do I love to do” cleaning and organizing are at the top of the list. I love a completed job, a box checked and something crossed off of the list. I thought about how I became this person and how my parents influenced this tremendously. I had exceptional teachers early on. Both of my parents worked keeping up a full schedule including owning their own business, pursuing multiple degrees and being asked to jump into the deep end by their own bosses. Inside the house, they were always doing a project. They were the quintessential DIY people before that was even a term. They gardened, cooked, painted, decorated, cleaned, fixed, organized and did any project needed for the home. I was their apprentice in every way possible.

I know as parents today we are so concerned with our kids’ mental health, their happiness and the balance of their workload. Life really is moving faster and kids have more commitments. This has led to less focus on some basic life skills and preparing kids to be on their own. One of my favorite parent books is “How To Raise An Adult”  by Julie Lythcott Haims, a former Dean of Freshmen at Stanford University. She witnessed firsthand kids crumbling at school because they were ill-prepared on their own from the helicopter parenting we all have succumbed to. 

I want students who complete OYO to feel confident, ready and excited to go out on their own. I want them to be prepared for obstacles and simple daily tasks. I want them to know they can do this, they can find the information they need, they can create a space they can thrive in and they can do all the things to become successful adults! Get ready and you got this!

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