Tyler students say Ambassadors of Compassion program changed the - KYTX CBS 19 Tyler Longview News Weather Sports

Tyler students call Ambassadors of Compassion program life-changing

Tyler students say Ambassadors of Compassion program changed their lives

Posted: Updated:
TYLER (KYTX) - The national leadership program that came to Tyler for the very first time this year, is about to come to finish up, and local students say they're forever changed.

We've reported several times on Ambassadors of Compassion, a program meant to help teenagers find themselves and plan goals for their future.


11 weeks ago, five John Tyler High School students signed up for an after-school program called Ambassadors of Compassion, because they thought it would look good on a job or college resume.  
Then just a week or two into the program, the students realized this was much more than a resume booster.

"Do you think you know yourself better today than you did 12 weeks ago?" asks their AOC coach Ken Hawk?

They all nod and smile. 

"You think you're better for it?" he asks. The question answered with a resounding, "Yes."

This program is life-changing.  
"I completely forgot about having it on my resume," says John Tyler Junior Alex Arellano. 

Instead, he found himself focusing on the change he started seeing in himself.  

"Overcoming some major obstacles in life that no one would imagine over coming," Arellano says. 
He and his four friends met with AOC Coach Hawk once a week after school, talking about personal issues, future goals, and ways to help their community.  
"The most exciting part of this program was actually going to the East Texas Food Bank, which was my first time doing something good for my community," Arellano says.
As the program is winding down, some of the students don't even recognize themselves.
"First of all I have more compassion. and then I have more confidence in myself," says John Tyler Junior Isaac Urieta. "I used to ponder about my future like, 'What's going on? What am I going to do?'"
He says Ambassadors of Compassion helped him and his friends see college as a reality.  
"Where do you want to go to school?" we asked them.

Arellano smiled and said, "Texas A&M."

Urieta quickly said, "First start out at TJC for basics and then NYU for a writing degree."
The guys say they owe their confidence to Hawk.  

"Really it's mind blowing," Arellano says. "Strangers coming up to your life and helping you realize who you are and it's really helped me out."

Every single one of them say they can't wait to sign up for the program again next year.  

The program officially ends next Thursday, May 29.  The students will all get to go to a closing ceremony at the Dallas Cowboys Stadium, where they'll meet lots of famous actors and athletes who are Ambassadors of Compassion.  

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Capital Murder defendant Calvert wheeled, unwilling, into district courtroom

    Capital Murder defendant Calvert wheeled, unwilling, into district courtroom

    Thursday, August 21 2014 6:38 PM EDT2014-08-21 22:38:39 GMT
    James Calvert was wheeled into Judge Jack Skeen Junior's courtroom Thursday afternoon in what appeared to be a catatonic state and seemingly restrained as deputies balanced him on a wheelchair while supporting his legs.More >>
    James Calvert was wheeled into Judge Jack Skeen Junior's courtroom Thursday afternoon in what appeared to be a catatonic state and seemingly restrained as deputies balanced him on a wheelchair while supporting his legs.More >>
  • Officer Involved Shooting Suspect's Mom Speaks Out

    Officer Involved Shooting Suspect's Mom Speaks Out

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 11:13 PM EDT2014-08-21 03:13:22 GMT
    LONGVIEW (KYTX) - Hope Fountain says the shadow of recent events has covered up who her son really was."You'll never replace those hugs and those smiles. He would always be there for you no matter what." - Hope Fountain, Wagner's MotherGregg County Jail Records show that Wagner has a violent past but Fountain says he has regretted his crimes since the day they were committed. In 2013, Wagner plead guilty to terroristic threats of a public servant. Fountain says Wagner was going through a roug...More >>
    LONGVIEW (KYTX) - Hope Fountain says the shadow of recent events has covered up who her son really was."You'll never replace those hugs and those smiles. He would always be there for you no matter what." - Hope Fountain, Wagner's MotherGregg County Jail Records show that Wagner has a violent past but Fountain says he has regretted his crimes since the day they were committed. In 2013, Wagner plead guilty to terroristic threats of a public servant. Fountain says Wagner was going through a roug...More >>
  • Lawmaker, transportation commissioner urge voter passage of Prop 1

    Lawmaker, transportation commissioner urge voter passage of Prop 1

    LONGVIEW (KYTX) - Lawmakers and people in transportation gathered in Longview today,, asking for voter support of a constitutional amendment in November, meant to improve Texas roads. Proposition one, if passed, would divert half of the oil and gas revenue from the state's rainy day fund to TxDOT. Next budget year, that could amount to about 1.4 billion dollars. But speakers at today's transportation forum, hosted by Longview Chamber of Commerce at Pinecrest Country Club, say that's only abou...More >>
    LONGVIEW (KYTX) - Lawmakers and people in transportation gathered in Longview today,, asking for voter support of a constitutional amendment in November, meant to improve Texas roads. Proposition one, if passed, would divert half of the oil and gas revenue from the state's rainy day fund to TxDOT. Next budget year, that could amount to about 1.4 billion dollars. But speakers at today's transportation forum, hosted by Longview Chamber of Commerce at Pinecrest Country Club, say that's only abou...More >>
Powered by WorldNow

CBS19, MYTX & KCEB
2211 ESE Loop 323
Tyler, TX 75701
Phone (903) 581-2211
Fax (903) 581-5769

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KYTX. All Rights Reserved. Users of this site agree to the Terms of Service, Privacy Notice/Your California Privacy Rights, and Ad Choices.