GHC Floyd campus to host annual Floyd Teen Maze


Abby Chesnut

High school freshmen will participate in a maze that will feature different life-altering events like pregnancy and driving under the influence.

Julia Haynes, News Editor

From Oct. 18 to 20, the GHC Floyd campus will be hosting the annual Floyd Teen Maze. Up to 2,000 high school freshmen from various schools will gather to navigate through a “maze” that sends them on different routes through what’s similar to a life-size board game. Students are faced with choices that may affect their “lives” in positive or negative ways, and each decision—made by a random drawing—leads them someplace new.

The Teen Maze itself will be held in the gymnasium and surrounding areas at the GHC Floyd Campus. There will be a community preview night on Oct. 18 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. for parents, high school seniors and other community members to go through the maze. On Oct. 19, the Teen Maze will host Armuchee, Pepperell, Model and Coosa High School. On Oct. 20, it will host students from Rome High School during all time slots. 

Floyd County had hosted the Teen Maze at the Coosa Valley Fairgrounds since 2015 as a way to help students think about and plan for their futures. The event is returning after a two-year break due to COVID. Sponsors of NWGA Public Health and Rome-Floyd County Commission on Children and Youth decided to move the event to a setting that coincided with the focus of the Teen Maze—college and graduation.

“We can’t think of a better place to host other than one of our local institutions of higher education,” LaDonna Collins, the executive director of Rome-Floyd County Commission on Children and Youth, said. “Georgia Highlands is also a great location because the majority of our schools won’t have to travel more than 10 miles to get there.”

This is the first year the Floyd Teen Maze is being held on a college campus, and Christa Gilmore—Youth Development Coordinator for the Georgia Department of Public Health Northwest Health District—has high hopes for student engagement. 

“These are ninth-grade students, for which many have never been on a college campus,” Gilmore said. “I think it will solidify the image of going to college as an actual reality.”

“We are thrilled to be hosting our local high schools and community volunteers,” Bradley Gilmore, GHC Floyd campus manager, said.

There will be 24 stations in the maze, including impaired driving, a pregnancy clinic, rehab and a funeral home. Students will end their Teen Maze journey at the Information Trail, where they receive resources and information about various colleges and careers within the region.  

Some of these stations have changed over the past eight non-consecutive years of hosting the Floyd Teen Maze. Sponsors have edited scripts and added current trends. 

“We alter the crash scene to reflect whatever law enforcement is seeing as the biggest problem that year,” Christa Gilmore said. “Additionally, we bring in new resources for the Information Trail so that students get exposed to a variety of resources within the community.”

Anyone who would like to experience the Floyd Teen Maze for themselves is encouraged to attend the preview night on Oct. 18. and those who are interested in volunteering for the event can sign up on their website.