School newspaper of Academy of the Holy Names, Tampa

Cara Filler Speaks at Convocation

December 4, 2018

(Photo Credit/ Chanita Belcher/ Used with permission) Pictured: Madison Chandler ('19), left, and Caitlin Asher ('19), right.

(Photo Credit/ Chanita Belcher/ Used with permission) Pictured: Madison Chandler ('19), left, and Caitlin Asher ('19), right. "I'm going to make sure I check in with my friends who recently started driving and be more alert and not put myself in bad situations," says Natalie Gillis ('21).

Cara Filler, youth motivational speaker, spoke at convocation on Tuesday, Dec. 4, about the safety and choices of driving. Filler shared her own personal story of losing her sister, due to a car crash. Filler emphasized decision making in her presentation, speaking about the choices we make and the consequence of poor choices. 

With emotional comments, the students of Academy felt moved by her words. Angelina Gonzalez (’20) says, “Mrs. Filler really touched my heart today with her story. It is crazy to think that terrible things can happen just because of poor decisions, and Mrs. Filler changed my mindset on the choices I make. She was definitely one of my favorite guest speakers that we have had so far, just because of how well we all felt connected to her.”

Principal Stephanie Nitchals says, “The convocation committee felt that it was important to get her message out before Christmas Formal.  We care about all of you and just wanted to make sure you make responsible decisions and to give you strategies to get out of an awkward situation.”

Filler is the founder of the Drive to Save Lives Tour and speaks about her heartfelt moment and encourages her audience to make smart choices. Along with the emotional impact, Filler also brings humor and laughter to her presentations. She speaks at schools in five different countries and has impacted over 2 million students through her journey. 

Fallon Flaharty (’19) says, “You could tell how passionate Cara Filler was about this topic. She would joke with us to keep the tears from coming, but the story was so moving we couldn’t help but cry.”

Every year, Filler speaks at over 200 high schools and shares her message about safety, risk-taking, and peer pressure. She also has college programs and parent programs. The college programs offered from Filler are The Drive to Save Lives, Let’s Get R.E.A.L, Are You America’s Next Top Role Model?, and more. These programs are driven to encourage students to make better choices and stand up for what they believe in. The parents program shows parents how to communication in a realistic way about teens and safe driving. Filler supports and talks to parents, helping them understand why teens drive like they do.

Chloe Kruszewski (’19) says, “Hearing her story made me realize that I need to be more aware when I drive and it motivated me to help others do the same.”

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