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Sergeant schools local students

Master Sgt. Stephen Love from the Patrick Air Force Base Equal Opportunity Office (standing in tan shirt) speaks to students from Satellite High School May 19. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class David Dobrydney)

Master Sgt. Stephen Love from the Patrick Air Force Base Equal Opportunity Office (standing in tan shirt) speaks to students from Satellite High School May 19. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class David Dobrydney)

PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- This week at Satellite High School approximately 100 freshman students got an education for life.

Master Sgt. Stephen Love from Patrick's Equal Opportunity Office spent the week giving presentations on choices, their consequences and how to develop good habits to live a highly effective life.

"Conducting seminars and training such as this creates and maintains bridges of contribution and cooperation from our military community to the surrounding local community", Sergeant Love said, "making us direct investors in their current and future success."

Sergeant Love had been asked if he would speak to the students after providing Equal Opportunity training for the Satellite High faculty back in February of this year. The first teacher to arrange for him to address the students was Terri Rubiella, who teaches History and Learning Strategies.

"I really see a need for programs like this," said Mrs. Rubiella, the wife of 920th Rescue Wing member Senior Master Sgt. Rene Rubiella, who runs the drunk-driving prevention program Operation Not on Our Watch.

"In the course I teach I touch on choices, decisions and consequences; presentations like these help drive the lesson home," she said.

Sergeant Love's presentation is based on the book "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens" by Sean Covey. The Teen seminar is the sister version of "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People," which is used in the curriculum of the NCO Professional Enhancement Courses and a reference for the EO First Duty Station (FDS) lesson taught at the First Term Airman's Center. While the Equal Opportunity Office FDS lesson uses the latter book as a reference, there was no Air Force requirement for the former.

"I acquired the material and FranklinCovey certification on my own because I love teaching," said Sergeant Love. "And hopefully when these kids go home they'll talk about this experience with their parents."

"Many of these children are family members of our Warfighters and civilian employees," said Sergeant Love. "What better way to ensure the mission readiness of our Airmen than to ensure their children is better equipped for life's mission to navigate the minefields of growing up?"

During his presentation Monday, Sergeant Love encouraged the students to actively participate and to use their imaginations. He helped the students break the ice by making signs for themselves with their name, favorite food and dream vacation.

He asked whether any of them had ever had to make a decision about alcohol, drugs or something else that would impact their lives. One student described how he had always wanted to move out and be on his own but when he did so, it turned out to be more difficult than he anticipated. Sergeant Love used that example to speak about the need to use imagination to "look beyond the moment" and consider the consequences of the decisions we make today.

"The information offered throughout this seminar is not going to make life's challenges easier, but if you'll commit to implementing the habits into your life, it will make navigating those challenges less overwhelming and it will become easier to accept the consequences of your choices," said Sergeant Love.