In Jonas's highly structured community, which is founded on the principles of Sameness, each adolescent is required to fulfill an allotted amount of volunteer hours before the Ceremony of Twelve, where they are given their future Assignments by the community's Chief Elder. The Committee of Elders carefully monitors each adolescent during their volunteer hours in order to determine which future occupation best fits each individual. Although the vast majority of adolescents complete the required amount of volunteer hours before the ceremony, there is a rumor that an Eleven had once arrived at the ceremony without completing his hours and was not given an Assignment. He was then permitted an additional month to complete the volunteer hours and received his Assignment in private upon completion. It was said that this disgrace clouded his entire future.