Students from Houston ISD’s early college campuses showcased a few of their senior service projects to their peers on Tuesday, May 14, 2013 during the annual Senior Summit.
Approximately 200 seniors from North Houston Early College, East Early College, Challenge Early College, Empowerment College Prep and the Houston Academy for International Studies watched as groups presented projects focusing on issues such as feeding the hungry, mentoring younger students, preventing bullying and promoting safe physical activity, among others. While the service projects are a requirement for graduation, college access coordinator for East Early College High School Lisa Green said many of her students laid groundwork for their projects to continue after they graduate.
“I’m very proud,” said Green. “It’s amazing. There’s hope for the future. It’s really neat for them to all come together and see that they’re all thinking the same way. Houston’s this huge, gigantic, vast city that they never seem to cross as easy as it is to. Then for them to find out that kids are doing very similar projects, it’s kind of neat to see the same themes come up.”
One group of Green’s students organized donation drives of items to be packaged for military members serving overseas, including eight carloads worth of materials to send to the troops.
Another group of students from North Early College High School taught soccer to students from Burbank Elementary. The group, all members of the NECHS soccer team, decided on their project for health reasons, said NECHS senior Edgar Sigaran.
During his group’s presentation, Sigaran relayed a story about a child who needed cleats and other gear, but whose family was unable to afford to make the purchase. He said he had once been in a similar position with a coach offering assistance to him, so he and his group pitched in to help their player, too.
“If I was inspired and motivated to be a better person, a better soccer player and be a teenager that actually had influence in his community, I think (the young student) can do the same thing and be a better teenager.”
Two group projects from NECHS were recognized amongst their peers for overall community impact (Eradicate Hunger) and overall presentation (Life Blood, which focused on blood donation drives and increasing enrollment at NECHS).