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As Pittsburgh shivers through one of the coldest winters in memory, Chinese New Year---known in China as the “Spring Festival”, warmly embraces us in centuries-old traditions of festivals, food and folklore starting January 31st.   Symbolized this year by the majestic, cheerful and energetic horse, the New Year also marks the spirited debut of Luminari’s 2014 Programs.  We are champing at the bit, ready to craft another successful year at Luminari, grateful for the generous financial, educational and emotional support of our benefactors and community partners, notably our first two “thoroughbred” corporate sponsors: UPMC and Schell Games

The wise words of Jesse Schell, CEO of Schell Games, one of our guests for the 2013 business roundtable during the I Want to be an Ambassador! summer camp were a run-a-way hit with our teen campers and inspire us to confidently follow our dreams during the Year of the Horse.

Jesse Schell talks with the 2013 Ambassadors!

We would like you to join UPMC, Schell Games and the many individuals whose belief in our mission and continued support sustains us.  To learn more about our sponsorship opportunities, please visit our website or call 412-877-1888.
Like the gallant horse racing to the finish line with all its strength and grit, those who Luminari “trains” go on to confidently follow their dreams to “winner’s circles” of every kind.   Join us!

Hilda Pang Fu, President, Luminari

Happy New Year 2014: Year of the Horse 

Did You KNOW?
The 15-day festival, which starts on January 31 this year, is based on a combination of lunar and solar movements. It starts with the first new moon of each calendar year and ends on the full moon.
Characteristics of people born in the year of the horse include:
  • Clever
  • Kind
  • Adventurous
  • Helpful
  • Talented
  • Popular

LUMOS! is published bi-monthly.
Please email us your story suggestions or letters to the editor - THANK YOU!

Re-Thinking New Year’s Resolutions

by Gina Catanzarite, Director, Teen Writer!

The only resolution I’ve made for the New Year is to decide that I do not like New Year’s Resolutions.

I get it, I do. Resolve to do something different or new or better or more challenging. There’s merit in that. But as I’ve watched the onslaught of January commercials urging people to join weight-loss clinics or visit job-seeking websites to find that “career-change you’ve always dreamed of,” I’ve decided that the meaning of New Year’s Resolutions has morphed into something rather depressing.

Advertisements suggest New Year’s Resolutions are born out of disappointment. Born out of dissatisfaction. Your body isn’t good enough, you job isn’t good enough, your eating and exercise habits aren’t good enough, the way you’ve been spending your money or free time or work time or even your emotions simply hasn’t been good enough. 

And so when that iconic crystal ball drops above Time Square, we focus on our perceived failures and shortcomings of the past year and then ring in the new one with a resolution to change. what about the good stuff?  All of the things we did right?  The friends and the family we laughed with, our random and deliberate acts of kindness that buoyed the spirits of others, our accomplishments on the job, our hobbies at home, even delicious foods we’ve enjoyed? 

Those are the memories that should mark each passing year. 

We are free to make choices and changes and improvements to our lives any day of any week. We don’t need a New Year’s Resolution to take that initiative.

So from now on, when the calendar flips from the last day of December to the first day of January, I think we should all just focus on the people and activities and accomplishments that have brought us joy in the past—and if we make any resolution at all, it should be to keep on enjoying those things well into the future.
UPMC Youth Initiatives: Check out these exciting programs by our funding and community partner designed specifically for teens and youth!

Dignity & Respect For Youth
The Dignity & Respect Campaign is proud to partner with leaders, teachers, and administrators of youth organizations and schools to promote positive behaviors and anti-bullying initiatives. Learn more...
Healthy Community Healthy You For Youth
We are passionate about encouraging youth to lead a healthy lifestyle. That’s why we developed a four-part series that focuses on awareness, prevention, nutrition, and fitness. Learn more...
Next Steps
This experience helps students explore their amazing potential for success in the health care field through educational field trips, hospital and facility tours, job shadows, mentorship, and more. Learn more...
Schell Games
Schell Games announced this month the company will be moving into its new headquarters in the Bessemer Court area of Station Square beginning Spring 2014. The move represents a significant increase in usable space for this growing company. Read more...

So what is Schell Games?
Founded in 2002 by world-class game designer and renowned author Jesse Schell, Schell Games specializes in creating memorable experiences through mobile, console, handheld, online and social games, interactive theme park attractions, internet-enabled toys and virtual worlds. Learn more...

Calling all Teen Writers!   

2014 Summer CampsCelebrate the best of teen writing from around the country!  The Andy Warhol Museum and the nonprofit Alliance for Young Artists & Writers will be hosting a reception to celebrate the arrival of Art.Write.Now.Tour 2013 – 14, a nationwide traveling exhibition showcasing original work created by teen award-winners of the 2013 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.  The exhibition includes more than 130 art and literary works from students around the country.  These emerging artists’ and writers’ works were judged by a panel of professionals in the visual and literary arts community. For more information about the event, visit the Warhol website.

And once you’re inspired by their writing. . . it’s time to create some of your own!   Registration is now open for Luminari’s Teen Writer! camps coming in June and July, 2014!  
Visit Luminari for more information about camps and to check out scholarship opportunities.
About Luminari 
Luminari is a Pittsburgh-based nonprofit organization founded to foster activites that broaden minds, inspire innovations and promote community engagement.

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