“Having a Be Strong program is a necessity in every school. After I faced bullying throughout school, Be Strong helped me regain confidence that led me to many of my passions now, including speech and debate. Without that confidence, I would never have discovered this blessing.”
While Be Strong’s core mission is focused on improving the lives of kids and teenagers, its impact doesn’t end at high school graduation.
Be Strong has a powerful network of alumni who are continuing to promote Be Strong’s mission wherever they go. Whether it’s in college, at work, or in their own communities, Be Strong alumni are finding ways to make the world a better, brighter place.
Former Be Strong Student State Representative Alyssa first got involved with Be Strong during high school in Oklahoma City. Having been targeted by fellow students for a speech impediment growing up, Be Strong’s mission resonated with her.
“My former high school had a large problem with bullying in a lot of different forms,” Alyssa said. “Working with Be Strong and their curriculum, we were able to help a lot of people overcome challenges and persevere.”
To help prevent isolation and build stronger community in her school and beyond, Alyssa started a Be Strong initiative called We Dine Together, which encourages students to reach out to isolated peers to ensure no one is denied human connection.
We Dine Together also connected Alyssa with Be Strong Student State Representative Sonny, whom we got to know as Be Strong Student of the Month in April. Together, they promoted friendship and connection at their high school with We Dine Together and Be Strong, which Sonny is continuing to lead at the school.
“It’s an honor to leave a legacy, and I’m excited to keep it going,” Alyssa said. “I think it’s important — something Sonny and I have noticed is that bullying isn’t going anywhere, especially on social media. Knowing that I passed down this program to Sonny who will continue to pass down this program that eliminates isolationism in school, it gives me peace of mind and hope for the next generation.”
While Alyssa worked to promote Be Strong’s mission and help others, she was able to find guidance and positivity throughout her own high school experience with Be Strong.
“Around my senior year, I began dealing with some unforeseen medical issues,” Alyssa said. “I was facing criticism for it from some of my peers. Be Strong reminded me of my power to be able to still flourish in high school and help others do the same.”
Now a student at Oklahoma City University, Alyssa plans to graduate in 2024 with a degree in game design and animation. She hopes to use her animation skills to communicate important information to others through film or medical animation.
In addition to extracurriculars like speech and debate team and serving as a titleholder in the Miss America Organization, Alyssa keeps the spirit of Be Strong alive on her college campus. She founded the first collegiate chapter of We Dine Together and hopes to spread the mission across other universities.
“Bullying never stops at any age,” Alyssa said. “You can see it in any school and even in the workforce. I look forward to seeing all that Be Strong students and alumni can accomplish in bringing an inclusive atmosphere everywhere we go. We all want to do our best and make a positive impact in every community.”