Rye Y Story Project: Ariel

ArielI feel like I’ve grown up at the Rye Y. I started attending camp here with my brother when I was 8. My family lives in Queens but my father works in White Plains so we commuted together every day. As soon as I was old enough, I became a C.I.T., then a counselor, then a unit leader and now I’m a group director overseeing the Explorer campers, C.I.T.s, counselors, and unit leaders. My role involves empowering my team and helping them work out problems and conflicts. I love seeing the growth of both campers and counselors over the course of the summer. I love getting to spend time with kids all day and be involved with so many families.

I double majored in studio art and psychology at Binghamton University. Since high school, I knew that I wanted to be an art therapist and am very passionate about the subject. I’m working on my Masters in Creative Art Therapy at Pratt and currently interning with high risk children in Chelsea.

Art is also a part of my job at the Y. A couple of summers ago, I proposed a fine arts program for the summer camp and helped set up the curriculum. I’m now teaching a creative arts class here and excited about a new art class we’re introducing in the Spring. The Mixed Media Sketchbook class is for grades 5-7 and will focus on self-expression and character development.

I love the Y. It is my second home – a home for growth and development. Everyone says it must be so hard to commute all the way from Queens but I don’t feel that way. It is so fun to be here.