Culminating Leadership Projects: Elevator Pitches

Alzar School | 19.05.21

Last week, blog readers indulged in learning about a major component of the Alzar School experience: Demonstrations of Learning. This week we will dive into another component of Alzar School life that is a driving force throughout the semester, which comes to a head this afternoon as students present their Culminating Leadership Project Elevator Pitches! 

Students celebrate the last week of classes with a photo booth.
Students celebrate the last week of classes with a photo booth.

Culminating Leadership Projects (CLPs) are a key piece of each semester as students diligently employ their emerging leadership skills to craft a community service experience in their home region. Necessarily, CLPs reach past our classroom walls and extend beyond the semester. Students who elect to participate to the full extent will enroll in a remote practicum through Alzar School the semester following their graduation wherein they fulfill and reflect upon the CLP they initially crafted in leadership class during their semester. 

As you enter the Confluence Building, we have an interactive map that documents the location of Alzar School student CLPs across the nation, and many past/ongoing CLPs are documented on our website: check them out! 

As part of the CLP, students craft a mission statement and a website, as well as a precise plan of action that culminates in a 90-second pitch that each student delivers to a panel of judges. Judges, typically including school staff and board members, deliberate and allocate cash prizes towards winning projects. Pitches are happening this afternoon and the nervous excitement is tangible!

Here is a sneak peek at some titles and project overviews:

Emendation Agriculture

Everyone Rides

751 Run: Kids’ Weekend Running Club

Jazz for Joy

Sole Mates

More Meaning

Winter Harbor Summer Fun Run

Fly Day on the Ruby

Young Creatives Funding Board

Ellie is partnering with an existing foundation, One Love, for her CLP. Her work is inspired by the story of a young woman in her hometown, Yeardley Love, who was murdered by her ex-boyfriend in 2010. Ellie is using her passion for sports to contribute to One Love’s mission in her CLP, Field Hockey for Love. Ellie plans to create a field hockey program for youngsters in grades two through five because the local recreational leagues do not provide opportunities for this age group currently. Alongside the motor skills, social skills, and self-confidence that participation in athletics is shown to foster, Ellie plans to teach youth about distinguishing between healthy and unhealthy relationships. High school field hockey players will run and coach the event, and Ellie will facilitate a drive to attain necessary gear since the cost of equipment can be a barrier to participation in field hockey for many people. 

Perry is using the appeal of lacrosse for his CLP, Lacrosse the City. He notes that a relatively small number of South Carolinian youth can afford the equipment and training to participate in the “fastest sport on two feet”, thus privilege and inequality are evident in the sport. His hope is to provide an opportunity for outdoor exercise, camaraderie, and an escape from mundane day-to-day tasks for folks from less financially advantaged economic backgrounds. He hopes to collaborate with a local organization that emphasizes mentorship and athletics to recruit participants. 

AP Spanish students make a traditional Tres Leche Cake.

In addition to DOLs and CLPs, students are completing more traditional final examinations, both written and performative, in their courses today and tomorrow. With AP exams and coursework complete, some students have been able to engage with exciting class projects, such as following Spanish instructions to make a traditional tres leches pastel with Mike Perez in AP Spanish class! In Chemistry class, students collected water samples across campus to analyze and compare pH values from different sources. 

Chemistry students measure pH of water samples.

We have nearly made it! The finish line is in sight and we are filled with pride for our students and their academic achievements this semester.