828 N. Sabine Dr.
Baton Rouge, LA 70809
Do you wish children and young adults would show manners and respect? Growing Into Elegance (GIE) is the perfect place to start. Colette Pate saw a lack of manners and disregard in the practice of etiquette in children wherever she went. She saw a need to teach social graces to the young people she encountered at church, school, the mall, everywhere! Colette decided to do something about it and Growing Into Elegance was born.
GIE strives to reinforce moral values, instruct etiquette, and encourage academic success and leadership to further empower our youth. There are three instructors and approximately thirty participants per season that include group classes for ages 3-6, 7-9, 10-12, 13-15 and 16 & up. Classes typically begin in November and include various social events such as high teas and recitals. The program incorporates various classes in social etiquette and community service/fundraising projects. Participation culminates with a cotillion ball in May.
Parents say seeing the changes in their children is priceless. Parents notice changes in manners and behavior and report an overall improvement in grades and classroom conduct. The child’s self-confidence, self-esteem and sense of self-worth improve, thus exposing them to life and other peers outside their realm of like.
Colette Pate, Director, started Growing Into Elegance in October 2012. She and co-directors, Leah White and Taeneia White-Ducre try to build character, self esteem, motivation, and integrity through life exposure and experience. At GIE, young girls and boys are formally introduced into society and celebrate their transition into young adulthood. Colette has over 20 years of experience dealing with both children and the elderly. She is very active in her church having directed several church plays. Colette believes faith and education are most important.
As a young adult, Taeneia White-Ducre learned the core value of social graces. Her motivation to encourage young people to truly live and explore everything possible comes from her own life experiences and hopes to help change the lives of young people so they can become successful, fearless, and confident leaders. She is also a certified Etiquette Instructor from Etiquette Leadership Institute in Athens Georgia. Taeneia received her Business Management degree from LSU and traveled to six countries while participating in an International Business Seminar program.
Leah White has a Kinesiology degree from LSU and has received a Master’s Degree from the University of Phoenix. Leah hopes GIE will be able to provide support to youth across the state by extending their services into schools and by helping build a greater partnership between parents and schools in order to prevent youths from falling through the cracks.
The directors visit churches and schools to create awareness of their program to students and parents. Growing Into Elegance advertises in Baton Rouge Parents Magazine and has its own Facebook page. GIE has plans to become a non-profit foundation to give greater opportunity to every child and youth. Growing Into Elegance believes “some young people are academically gifted; some are athletically gifted; all can be socially gifted.”
We welcome everyone to join us at our upcoming Cotillion Sunday, December 15 at Boudreaux’s in Baton Rouge, LA. This will be a Red Carpet event and the theme will be “The Impossible Dream”. Please contact one of the directors for additional information.