Guest speaker’s message: “Be the change” against bullying

On October 22, Youth Motivational Speaker Tom Thelen will speak to students at C. J. Hooker Middle School. Thelen is the author of “Victimproof – The Student’s Guide to End Bullying” and founder of the Victimproof Bullying Prevention Program, a curriculum that helps kids speak up to bullying and become a positive influence at their school.

“A new study by the U.S. Department of Education shows that 30 percent of sixth graders experience bullying on a regular basis,” said Thelen. “If we’re ever going to reduce bullying, we have to give kids practical skills for how to handle it and how to get help.”

As a student, Thelen was bullied and got caught in a cycle of victimization. Thankfully, a teacher stepped in and helped him develop the character needed to break free from bullying.

“It was a total change of mindset,” said Thelen. “I used to carry grudges with anyone who would bully me, but I learned that bitterness was only bringing me down. The thing that changed my life was realizing that my response was totally up to me, and even if I was victimized, I didn’t have to stay a victim forever.”

Thelen has spoken at more than 500 schools, colleges, and youth organizations. His message helps schools create a positive culture and shows students how to “be the change.” Thelen has been featured on FOX, CBS, PBS, The National Association of Student Councils, The National Honor Society, as well as Student Conferences for 4-H, FFA, FCCLA, and YMCA.

This event is sponsored by the C. J. Hooker Middle School PTO.

Learn more about Youth Motivational Speaker Tom Thelen.