Here at Highline High School we have a program dedicated to helping boys grow into becoming men of integrity in society. Becoming a Man is a program that not only helps them become men but gives them a sense of direction that they may not have had before.
The leaders of this group are Cesar Linarues and Curtis Wells. In an interview with these two gentleman and they gave me some insight on the program starting off with the values. In BAM they follow a set of values which amount to six in total. The values this group has are amazing starting off with having integrity and a respect for womanhood. Coach Wells explains the third value which is “Positive anger expression, because in this society, we as men are not brought up learning how to express our anger and it gets all bottled up. So we wanted to make sure to teach how to express anger in a respectful and responsible way”. The other values are visionary goal setting as in how you want to lead your life and making good choices to get to that goal. Accountability, self determination are the final values this program follows to help these boys lead a good life. Cesar had a few comments on why they chose these values saying “The key is your going to work on these your whole life and take these skills from BAM to help you in the outside world.They come up with their own manhood and that's the beauty of it”. Coach Wells added onto that saying “It’s for them to choose how they’re going to live with these values and be able to grow with them. Becoming a man is a process”.
Currently in the group the students are getting to know each other and become closer. The wall of what a man is perceived to be is being broken and the core values are being covered. My last question for them was if they thought BAM would last. Curtis respectfully answered my question stated “Yes, BAM has been around for 20 years. At the moment there are only five schools in Seattle with the program which includes Highline. We are committed to keeping this an ongoing thing.” The leaders of Becoming a Man also always make sure teachers know that they want success for students so they make sure to remind them to do homework and keep grades up.
Some exciting information that I got from the interview was a similar program coming to Highline named WOW which stands for Working on Womanhood. This is an opportunity for many girls to get help on things they may not have guidance on.