Stronger Together

By: Brittany Otero: Copy Editor

At 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 18, the Native American Student Association (NASA) hosted Team Work Makes the Dream Work in the Academic Commons, Room 126.

Comanche Nation Prevention and Recovery Case Manager Cindy Famero presented Team Work Makes the Dream Work with three interactive games; NASA members pushed away all of the classroom chairs to make space for a large circle.

Famero said that the word “team” is also an acronym for Together Everyone Achieves More.

“Basically, we can all be part — an intricate part — of a team,” she said. “You just got to find your little niche, so whatever you’re good at, and hone it. Whatever you like to do. Make that happen in a way that helps others. That’s how you can be a team. 

“Remember, some people are not going to understand this as well,” Famero said. “Maybe they are a single parent, or maybe they’re an only child.”

For the first activity, students passed a ball to each other, but Famero said that every member could only touch the ball once.

“The idea is you only have to worry about two things in this game,” she said. “You only have to worry about who’s throwing the ball to you, and who you’re throwing the ball to. You can only be as successful as the other persons on your team.

 “So,” Famero said, “if they throw it way up here, and you can’t catch it… Well, your teammate needs to get it where you can catch it. You’re going to see where your weakest link is. And that just means they have stuff to work on.”

Famero also said that the ball toss game shows how teams work together and stay focused.

“When it gets back to me, we’ve accomplished something,” she said.

Students formed a human pyramid during the second activity; Famero said that the idea behind a human pyramid is showing balance, reliance and trust in the foundation.

For the third and last activity, students passed a half-filled balloon to each other without using their hands.

Famero said that the balloon game demonstrates why it’s good to learn how to be comfortable in an uncomfortable situation.

“It was awkward,” she said. “It’s not something that we would usually do. So, therefore, you need to get out of your comfort zone in order to be on a team. Sometimes, they’re going to ask you to do that. And you must be able to say, ‘what is the lesson, and what do I need to learn?’ That’s the idea, especially when you’re in college.”

Incoming NASA President and Psychology major Heather Towne said the presentation went above and beyond her expectations.

“I wasn’t quite expecting it to be as interactive and hands-on, but I think that is what made it so special for us,” Towne said. “It’s hard for a group our size to remember that we’re a team all the time. So it’s awesome to have someone come in and remind us of that.”

Towne also said that it would’ve been nice to have time for more games.

NASA member and Criminal Justice major Tyus Parton said that he thought the presentation would just require sitting and listening, but everyone got involved.

“I thought it was fun,” Parton said. “Something new — wasn’t expecting that.”

Famero said that people achieve more as a group than individually.

“That’s the way we are in the community,” she said. “That’s the way we are in our lives — in our families. Don’t look out in an audience and say ‘oh my god, this isn’t going to work.’ You say, ‘I am going to make this work. I have my team behind me that’s depending upon me.’”

For more information about the event or NASA, contact Heather Towne at (580) 917-0742.

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