Jeff Yalden Rocking Rockwood October 26th

While roaming the halls, the students of the Rockwood Area High School in Pennsylvania may have discovered posters of a man dressed in casual attire, tattoos revealed down his arms.  At first glance, he appears much different from the usual formal speakers that Rockwood has had, and that is a completely relevant assumption to make because he is much different than any speaker that Rockwood has had in the past.  He is Jeff Yalden, and he is a motivational speaker that has travelled the globe and taken part in many national conventions.  He has even made an appearance on MTV.

I, Brandon Schmuck, was inspired to bring Jeff Yalden to my school after hearing him at the Pennsylvania Free Enterprise Week.  At this event, I heard some of the best speakers in my life.  The highlight was Jeff.  We heard hours upon hours of speakers there, but he still managed to connect with everyone in the audience and keep them alert and focused.

Jeff Yalden stressed the idea of living one’s life to the fullest by making good decisions with his slogan “Take Time To Think.”  He told stories, both humorous and emotional, that engaged the whole audience and provided them with valuable lessons.  He made each person see the value in his or her life and realize that he or she has it better than most people.  He told us to live each day as if it were our last and used the famous speech by Jimmy Valvano to support this.  He showed us that everyone in the crowd could achieve success and happiness, even someone with the lowest SAT scores in his state.  As part of his “Take Time To Think” slogan, he stressed that one should not make destructive decisions, such as using drugs and alcohol, in order to achieve happiness.  He connected with teenagers in a way that no other speaker could and is recognized as one of the best youth motivational speakers in the world for that reason.

After hearing Jeff speak, I, along with my friends and everyone else in the auditorium, knew that he needed to visit my school.  We believed that his visit would not only raise the level of spirit in our school but also affect the philosophy of every student on a personal level.  We all agreed that it was a great idea and set forth to bring it to life.

After contacting him and receiving information, I found that Jeff carried a much heavier cost than any speaker we have ever had at Rockwood; it came to no surprise, however, after witnessing his speaking skills and reading about all of the events and places that he has spoken worldwide.  This did not discourage my friends and I, however, because we knew that the benefits experienced by the student body would greatly supersede the cost.

After much researching and planning, we finally put together the money – within the first month of school.  Because of the level of determination exhibited, the district has committed this year’s assembly funds towards Jeff Yalden.  This was much less than we needed but was matched with more funding from the Communities in Schools of Pennsylvania.  We were nearing the cost and after a visit to the Somerset Drug and Alcohol Commission, they agreed to help fund our event.  We now had enough to host one show but had an even better idea; we would invite Turkeyfoot, a nearby school with around only 30 kids per grade, to enjoy this great event at a highly reduced cost. We would then gain enough money to host two shows.

Jeff Yalden will be visiting Rockwood on Friday, October 26, and his appearance will be the grand finale of the school’s Red Ribbon week.  There will be two shows in the morning, one for junior high and another for senior high.  I am confident that the student body will be greatly impacted by his visit and cannot thank Superintendent Mr. Bower and the community of Rockwood enough for the hard work that has gone into making this happen.

If you were truly inspired by this story, but still think that your small school cannot afford the great services of Jeff Yalden, I urge you to call upon local organizations and the businesses in your area.  In this day and age, very few people are willing to give the work required to set out and do something great.  If you show a high level of determination, local organizations and businesses will be greatly impressed by your wish to do something great, and they will be willing to help make things happen.  If you want to do something great at your school, please visit for more information.

Have a Jeff Yalden success story?  Post it below in the comments section or via Jeff’s Facebook page.

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Author:Jeff Yalden, Youth Motivational Speaker

Youth Motivational Speaker & Teen Life Coach. Since 1992, Jeff Yalden has been mesmerizing audiences with his engaging style and passion. Jeff is a story-teller that every where he speaks, he guarantees he is real and in the moment, perfect for every audience. He is one of a kind. He's interactive and nobody pours as much energy and passion into their programs that Jeff does. Guaranteed, Jeff will be a defining moment and a highlight of your students lives.

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