KENTLAND — As part of Red Ribbon Week at South Newton Middle School, Newton County Sheriff’s Captain and D.A.R.E Officer Shannon Cothran spoke to the students Oct. 29.
Cothran told the students that they will be faced with competition every day and that competition can be good or bad, but the biggest competition they will face will be the person they were the day before.
“I want you to focus on being a better person,” said Cothran. “I want you to go out and try to be a better person than you were yesterday.”
Cothran added that the people you surround yourself with have a huge impact on the things you do and the type of person you turn out to be.
“Are you spending your time with the right people,” asked Cothran. “Life is too short, try to avoid negative people. Don’t let them drag you down.”
Cothran went on to say that a lot of people turn to alcohol and drugs to feel better about themselves and that is how a lot of addictions start.
“If you aren’t making the right connections in life, you are not only harming yourself but you are harming other people as well,” said Cothran. “You should set goals in life. Find out what you want and go after it. I encourage you to see failures as not the end of something but just the beginning. Everyone fails at some point, it is how you respond to that failure that can set you apart.”
Before ending his speech, Cothran challenged the students to start doing two key things — giving back to your school and or community, and helping others.
“Not only are you doing good and helping people you will also make yourself feel better,” added Cothran.