Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Best Buddies

Me, Anthony Kennedy Shriver (Founder of Best Buddies), and Robbie (volunteer)
I just got back from speaking at the Best Buddies International Leadership Conference in Bloomington, IN (Go Hoosiers!). This weekend tugged at my heart in a way that I did not expect it to. Never one to turn my back on positive vibes, I welcomed the over flowing emotions and uber positive energy with open arms. I had the chance to meet some of THE most caring and positive individuals ever to be gathered in one place, all 1,600 of them!

I was invited to present the Saturday morning keynote at their global leadership conference for student volunteers. Up to this point, I'd heard of Best Buddies but was not completely familiar with the organization so of course I asked lots of questions and did some research as I was preparing for my session. I was thoroughly impressed with what I learned about Best Buddies on-line, but that was just a tiny little bite of the jumbo size slice. After meeting several of the staff members and student volunteers at the conference I was completely blown away by the mission, purpose and passion of the organization and in total awe of the impact Best Buddies has on thousands of lives.

I was asked to help inspire the students to continue to be great leaders but to be totally honest, I left the conference feeling like I received much more than I could ever have given that weekend. I was deeply moved by this group of people in a way that truly touched my heart, lifted my spirit and filled my soul with the idea that all dreams are possible. And I was only there for 2 days. Imagine if I would have stayed the entire weekend? The staff and volunteers of Best Buddies are changing lives. Their hearts are swelling with unconditional love and affection and their passion practically oozes out of their pores. These people are committed to the mission of Best Buddies in a way that pushes way beyond the definition of dedication; it's more like an overwhelming spirit, an incredible and positive force to be reckoned with. It was an absolute honor to be a part of their leadership weekend. I am officially a Best Buddies groupie!
To learn more about the organization and how to get involved on your campus or in your community please visit their web-site
In awe of the amazing impact a group of passionate people can make,

Me and Hillary Cruz (Ms. Teen USA)

Monday, July 21, 2008

Ready to ride...want to compete? Show me the money!!

ford contest

Ready for the road trip of a lifetime? mtvU and Ford are looking for college students to take part in a competitive journey across the country in the new reality show, College 500: Driven by Ford.
Drive cross country and compete at different universities along the way in creative challenges. The winning team members get a cash prize of $5,000 each. Shooting/road trip will occur the first 2 weeks of September. To be considered for the opportunity go to

Friday, July 11, 2008

Getting oriented at Adelphi

Meet some of my new Long Island peeps! Below is one of the orientation groups at Adelphi University who proudly struck a pose to represent the class of 2012. There was a lot going on at Adelphi this week. The new students have two and a half days of action packed goodness to help them get acquainted with campus before their collegiate career begins. How exciting! In the short time I had to spend with the incoming freshmen class I can already tell they're going to be pretty darn spectacular. Seriously, I'm not just saying that. After presenting, I had a chance to speak with quite a few students and each of them had so much enthusiasm and optimism for what's to come, from new roommates and classes to changing the world. I could almost see the excitement bubbling out of their pores. Most of the students who spoke to me after the program simply wanted to thank me for coming and that really means a lot to me, more than I can fully express. A couple of students shared personal stories and a few of them told me about their goals and dreams, several of which were to help change the world. Awesome, me too!
Something that one student said in particular really stuck with me, perhaps it's because I saw so much of myself in him. He said, "Kelly, I don't mean for this to sound strange but I really hope to change the world one day. I'm not sure what my mission is going to be, but when I discover my passion I want to share it with others in a way that will inspire them to change the world too." What this young man shared with me really touched my heart. I'm sure he had no idea that the brief conversation we had in the corner of a crowded auditorium would become an important part of my life. I will cherish that special moment forever. So simple, honest and pure. Moments like that help shape who we are as people and that moment sent a big rush to my soul that filled my spirit with a renewed sense of hope and was another gentle reminder of how blessed I am to be on this amazing journey. He said that he hopes to change the world one day and I have no doubt that he will do just that.

Even more hopeful than I was yesterday,