Lenihan launches service-learning group with ISU Extension


RICOCHET goal: To empower youth to reach their full potential working and learning in partnership with caring adults.

A group of fifth and sixth grade students at Lenihan Intermediate School are the first in Marshall County to participate in RICOCHET, a leadership program of the Iowa State University Extension.

RICOCHET focuses on five dimensions of leadership: leadership information, leadership attitudes, communication skills, decision making and stress management. Lenihan teachers were asked to nominate students for RICOCHET who exhibited strong leadership qualities and a history of making positive choices. About 50 students went through leadership training facilitated by the Extension, along with educators Angie Lovell, Diane Simpson and Dr. Liz Jurgensen.

Students attended eight sessions and heard from numerous community leaders about what strong leadership means. Some of the guests included Police Chief Mike Tupper, Sue Martin from the Martha-Ellen Tye Foundation, Marshalltown Public Library Director Sarah Rosenblum, Orpheum Theater Center Director Pip Gordon and school leaders.

RICOCHET students will take on a number of service-learning projects throughout the year, focusing on the community and within the school. Their first project is a canned food drive for the House of Compassion, which takes place this week (Dec. 3-7). The students have a goal of 850 items. In preparing for the food drive RICOCHET students divided up tasks and responsibility areas, from visiting classrooms to making posters and organizing boxes.