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‘Flip your 20’

Molly+Kennedy+speaks+to+the+student+body+in+the+auditorium+about+being+resilient.+%28Photo+by+Mal+Meston%29
Molly Kennedy speaks to the student body in the auditorium about being resilient. (Photo by Mal Meston)

Molly Kennedy speaks to the student body in the auditorium about being resilient. (Photo by Mal Meston)

Molly Kennedy speaks to the student body in the auditorium about being resilient. (Photo by Mal Meston)

Mal Meston, Editor-in-Chief

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Motivational speaker Molly Kennedy knows what it is like to get knocked down.

According to her website, MollyKennedyspeaks.com, Kennedy grew up in a dysfunctional family with addiction, divorce, abuse, neglect, abandonment, she suffered from an eating disorder, was suicidal and a runaway at 15 years old.

Kennedy also knows what it is like to get back up.

Kennedy was invited to Shores by the InterAct club, which includes adviser Shannon Conrad and senior officers Max Wilson, Emelia Talent, Caroline White and Madelynn Howerda.

Kennedy, according to her website, turned her pain into a purpose and achieved many life goals – gaining a Master’s Degree, publishing a book, completing an Ironman Triathlon (140.6 miles), finishing multiple marathons, becoming a bodybuilding champion, jumping out of an airplane and walking across fire.

On Wednesday, Jan. 25, Kennedy used her theme of “Building Reslient Learners,” to speak to the entire high school student body.

All freshmen, sophomores and juniors watched the assembly in the auditorium while seniors watched the live stream their fifth hour classrooms.

“I will apply the techniques of Molly Kennedy because I really liked her powerful message, and it allowed me to fully connect with her,” sophomore La’Quita Payne said.

Despite the difficult life growing up, Kennedy has spent the past 18 years of her life empowering today’s youth to be resilient and to take charge of their future.

“I always knew that I wanted to help kids in a way that I wasn’t helped when I was their age,” said Kennedy after her motivational speech.

Kennedy’s motivational speech empowers kids to overcome their personal obstacles.

A technique she expressed to overcome obstacles was by “Flipping your 20,” which she defined as changing the way a person looks at things through a more positive perception.

“She was inspirational because she described her background, and it made me realize that everybody is going through something,” senior Kevin Richards said. “I will apply ‘Flipping your 20’ to my life because if it changed her life, it can change anybody’s life.”

After being laid off twice as a high school teacher and coach, due to budget cuts, Kennedy said she wasn’t sure what her future looked like, but she always had the dream of motivated young adults.

“Even though I was laid off due to budget cuts, I knew that speaking to high school students was always something I wanted to do,” Kennedy said. “But it wasn’t until I was forced to, with losing my job and when I had gone to counseling, to be able to deal with my stuff personally, before I shared it from stage.”

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