Students, Concentrations on Display During Senior Project Presentations
It has been four years since Village Christian School introduced its innovative Harvard College-system based concentration program.
On May 7, 2015, the first class to complete the full program showed how this distinctive initiative has benefited VCS students when six concentration-based senior projects were presented to faculty and staff with a $2,000 scholarship on the line.
Each presenter already earned a $500 scholarship for being named their concentration’s top project. A total of 28 projects were completed.
Seniors begin working on their respective projects at the end of their junior year and must complete them by early April. The projects stretch each student and require 20-40 hours for completion, a paper, a project portfolio, and a presentation to a panel of judges.
This year’s top projects included:
- Set design and construction of the Elementary spring musical Willy Wonka Jr. (Sierra Cowell; Performing Fine Arts and Media Entertainment);
- Managing the non-profit “The Apple Project” and teaching English to students in China (Davin Chambers and Ingrid Chan; Ministry and Social Justice);
- An internship with Montrose Travel, research project of Wells Fargo’s rewards programs (Joseph McClure; Entrepreneurialism and Global Leadership);
- Study of bacteria (microbes) in the air (Christine Ausherman; Health and Environment);
- Creative writing project combining psychology and writing (Christina Keheyan; Visual Fine Arts and Media Entertainment); and
- A jewelry design business (Chad George; Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math).
The grand-prize winner will be announced on May 19, 2015, during the High School senior awards ceremony.
“As I watched our seniors present their projects, I was amazed by the obstacles they overcame, their deepening understanding of their strengths and interests, and their sense of purpose as they pursue their college and career goals,” said Associate Head of School for Academic Life Ray Endacott. “All the students who completed a senior project have worked diligently to take ownership of their learning and develop the attributes for future success. I’m proud of them all.”
The six concentrations present unique opportunities for students to explore potential career interests and nurture their talents in a hands-on, in-depth approach. As freshmen, students declare their concentration (like a college major) during the special “Ignite” ceremony, when they are surrounded by their 1:5 Circle of Care mentors, who are committed to fan each Crusader’s educational interest (spark) into flame.
As students progress through the years, concentration-specific projects, showcases, lectures from industry leaders, and special educational trips, provide students with unprecedented experience that can springbroad them into higher education at top colleges and universities across the nation.
Approximately 97 percent of this year’s seniors have been accepted to two- and/or four-year schools, including Boston College; Emory University; Johns Hopkins University; New York University; Pepperdine University; University of California, Berkeley; University of California, Los Angeles; University of Notre Dame; and University of Southern California.
“I am so proud of our seniors who have pursued an area of academic and career interest in depth and have been able to communicate their experience in this remarkable way," said Head of School Tom Konjoyan. "I dare suggest that many college seniors would have a hard time competing against our seniors and their higher level projects. “