We had an incredible time reconnecting with and celebrating our alumni last week at the Denver Alumni Reunion! Open Sky staff, alumni students, and alumni families gathered in Denver on Thursday, September 26 to share, encourage, and inspire.
Open Sky alumni events are designed to bring together alumni at all stages of their journey post-Open Sky. Two attendees graduated as recently as six weeks ago and one attendee was a student in our first year of operation, 12 ½ years ago!
One alumni parent shared that she now has so much hope for herself and her family. Her daughter, Sydney, attended the event as well, sharing her aspirations of becoming a fashion designer in Paris. Sydney has remained committed to being sober and is one of three graduates from Team Iris this summer who have regular check-ins with each other.
Charlotte graduated from Open Sky three and a half years ago. Clinical & Family Services Therapist Brian Leidal, who led her Family QuestTM intensive, was thrilled to have the opportunity to reconnect with her at the reunion. “I was blown away to see her,” he shared. “She didn’t look the same. Her smile, spark, and the light in her eyes were so starkly different than when I worked with her and her family.”
Ben was a student in Open Sky’s first year of operation and graduated in August 2007. Now, more than 12 years later, he does personal training work from a holistic perspective. His home therapist is actually helping to connect Open Sky alumni in the area to continue to learn and grow together in the work they started at Open Sky. Ben expressed that his time since Open Sky has not been without some bumps and that it took many years for him to truly realize what he learned at Open Sky and how much it has had an impact on his life. He was so excited to reconnect with Open Sky staff and fellow alumni.
Open Sky CEO & Founder Aaron Fernandes said following the event, “the takeaway for all of us as staff is to stick with it and know that we are planting seeds. Sometimes this is not a linear or sequential process. Overtime, healing does take shape.”
Each person who reconnected with us at the Denver Alumni Reunion has a beautiful story of growth, of healing, of recovery, and of strength. Our alumni community inspires us every day. Open Sky’s core values are courage, community, and excellence, and it is exciting to see that these values come alive in the lives of our students, their families, and the people they touch.