youthNYCID’s Young Adult Borough Center hosted a borough-wide scavenger hunt on Tuesday. The five resourceful teams of teenagers had to quickly find the answers to questions based on the history of Staten Island etc. All teams competed for first place prize which was a new pair of Beats headphones, second place would earn a $50 gift card, and the third-place team would receive a pair of movie tickets and popcorn.

The scavenger hunt, as created by YABC’s directors, would help give participants with initial professional development and training to help them fit in with their peers and with the borough’s culture.

YABC is an academic program designed for high school students who are behind in credit which hosted the voluntary event to engage students before the new school year.

“They are learning to engage as a team,” said Matthew Ominelli, assistant director of the program. “There’s a task at hand and they are really engaged on the tasks at hand.”

The day, while challenging, was equally informative. Prior to each task, participants were invited to hear from community leaders who shared their own advice for the task they were trying to complete: getting a high school diploma.

The students listened to advice from Dominick Brancato, executive director of New York Center for Interpersonal Development, and Bill Mattarazzo, chief of operations at state Sen. Andrew Lanza’s office. They also heard from a member of U.S. Army and a pair of Marines, amid a few others.  

The hunt’s challenges tested a vast range of skills and encouraged participants to be resourceful with the tools they had handy, be it their imagination or smartphone.

The scavenger hunt, however, was not complete without a dose of full-circle symbolism. After all, the hunt ended in the same place it all began in the coming months.

*Article from Staten Island Advance*