Week in Review

Monday, January 28, 2019

Today in class, we started out as we usually do by sitting in our assigned seats and praying in. We then did our daily devotional to start off the class, and it was very touching. It helped me appreciate what we were all about to learn and hopefully gain more knowledge as God speaks to us throughout the class. We started out doing praise reports for all of the PEP brothers who did something that another PEP brother felt was praiseworthy. I received one for love, and it lifted my spirits for the day.

After everyone received their praise reports, we moved on to the guys who were instructed to give their pitch. I was the first one to be called to do my pitch, and I was extremely nervous about it. But I got up and gave my pitch and was relieved to have gotten it done and out of the way. We continued with other PEP brothers delivering their pitches in front of the class. When they were done, Jeremiah let us know that we were going to be coming back after lunch. He also informed us that we would be doing a few pray-outs as well as watch art history. All in all, today has been a pretty eventful day in PEP.

Jordan W. (a.k.a. “GMC”)

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Today on K-pod it has been a very prosperous day. We worked on our pitches and everyone seems to be overcoming their nervousness. Everyone has progressed and is moving forward with finalizing their pitches. Working on pitches in the PEP program has helped us to speak more clearly and on a more professional level as businessmen. Everyone seems to be utilizing what we have learned during Toastmasters and now, after months of practice, it is beginning to pay off. We have been helping to build one another’s confidence to have the courage to stand in front of anyone and present a business pitch. We have been trying to teach each other how to stay focused regardless of distractions and loud voices. As I look back from the beginning, I remember the things we experienced. We were very discouraged and thought there was no way we would be able to accomplish or overcome our fears of speaking in front of a crowd. Now all of us our Winter ’19 class can hold our heads up high and say we have accomplished something, and that something is getting past a fear. We all know that this wouldn’t be possible without working as a PEP team and receiving advice from advisors and management. So we as Winter ’19 would like to thank everyone who motivated us to make it to this point. Without all of you, we wouldn’t have survived. We will end with this, “If there’s a will, there’s a way; and if there’s a way, there’s success.”

Michael W. (a.k.a. “Sugar Swirl”)

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Class today was filled with excitement. We started out with our ritual pray-in and word of the day. After that, the facilitator danced to the front of the room and told us to face the library. If you are not familiar with this, it means it is test time. At one time, we hated test day, but as the class is winding down – 37 days to be exact – we look forward to testing to finish. The pressure from just a couple of weeks ago is now a memory as we look to our successful futures.

After testing, we had two gentlemen, Steve H. and David R., come and teach us integrity selling. We learned a six-letter acronym “AID INC” which means approach, interview, demonstrate, validate, negotiate and close. The gentlemen walked us through the process, step by step. We then completed a behavior-style exercise, where we first identified ourselves by filling out a questionnaire. We also filled out another questionnaire to see how good we were at identifying the behavior styles of others. After filling out the questionnaire, we found out if we were a talker, doer, controller or supporter. The warden stopped by with his own visitors to observe our class and a couple of members of Redeemed ’19 told the volunteers some of the details. The volunteers were informed about some of the details of the PEP process and what it has done for them. We are PEP and we live “between the wings”!

We have been through the fire, and today was part of the buffing phase, polishing us for our return to our families so we will be better men. We gave Steve H. and Dave R. a standing ovation. We was left with a sense that we were officially true salesmen. The day ended with everybody’s favorite: art history. We are Redeemed ’19!

Shalimar W. (a.k.a. “Barry White”)

Thursday, January 31, 2019

My PEP brothers and I spend the day getting ready for our Pitch Day event tomorrow. We also helped the Phase One brothers prepare for their test. We watched the Robert Lewis video about relationships with women. Since we’ve already made it through the character portion of the program, we get to come back to help those in Phase One and also re-experience the Robert Lewis videos. It’s like we take so much more from it now.

As for our pitches, a lot of us are nervous, but at the same time we are excited to pitch our business ideas to the executives. And we are definitely very grateful for the executives who sacrifice their time to come out to the Sanders Estes Unit to support us. Most of us have never experienced anything like this, let alone even talked to people like the ones who support us here. It is truly life-changing. It has opened our eyes to the reality of good-hearted ladies and gentlemen who actually care about us and want to see us succeed. It is heartwarming to know that they support us. We have done so much to prepare for Pitch Day! Back on the dorms, we have pitch panels every day to break that nervousness barrier and get comfortable with speaking in front of people.

We are getting ready to graduate in 36 days. It seems like this past nine months has gone by so quickly. With everything that I have learned through this program, I honestly believe that I have the tools that are necessary to be both happy and successful.

Zachary W. (a.k.a. “Forest Gump”)


Friday, February 1, 2019

“Keep a focus on the three C’s of life… choices, chances and changes.”

~ Unknown author

Anytime we make a choice to take a chance, then we can definitely change. Life is all about the choices we make. A choice is defined as “the act of choosing; making a decision.” In life, the choices we make not only affect us, but they also affect the ones who care about us. Every choice has consequences, whether good or bad; there are always repercussions. Choices in life are everything, and some of the choices that I made early on in life still weigh heavily on my life.

A chance is simply the unknown and unpredictable element in happenings that seems to have an assignable cause. More often than not, we take significant chances and end up losing out in life. The chances we take when doing right or good can be beneficial to us as well as our loved ones. However, along with the good comes the bad, and when people take chances for the bad, they get bad results. The choice is ours on the chances we take, but we must know that for every chance we take there is a price to pay, either good or bad.

Last but certainly not least are the changes we make in life. Changes are defined as “to be or cause to be different.” Change is good for everyone in life. Sometimes all we need is change to get a result different from what we’ve always gotten in the past. Change can make the difference and determine how a person spends their life. PEP has helped me to change, and I am growing and transforming into the man I want to be.

In conclusion, these three C’s are what I choose to live my life by, and this has inspired me greatly. Remember this quote, “Everyone in life is given the choice to take a chance and make a change.”

Levert Y. (a.k.a. “Fred Sanford”)