The Young Futurist Project virtual spring session will start January 19th, and its staff is gearing up for the return of over 70 students!
Last March, the program was forced to switch to a virtual model due to COVID-19. Although the staff was presented with many challenges, they managed to host a successful virtual summer camp – 2020 Summer Experience. “Having to change our entire approach wasn’t easy. We faced many challenges along the way like making sure all scholars were equipped to learn virtually, keeping scholars engaged virtually, and making sure all scholars received supplies for scheduled activities,” stated YFP Director Jessica Lewis.
But despite those challenges, the staff remained optimistic and positive outcomes followed as the virtual approach to teaching and learning deemed rewarding. Students from across multiple districts were able to interact, and did, no matter their physical location. “We had a student who went on summer vacation with their family and still joined us via Zoom. We even had a scholar to participate in ACT Prep while at work,” said Lewis. The virtual approach also allowed students who may be “classroom shy” to grow socially in the comfort of their personal spaces.
Lewis recognizes that this school year’s programs would not have been a success without staff members like Academic Career Coordinator Alexandria Davis who manages the day-to-day virtual aspect of YFP, among other things. “It’s amazing to see our students grow over time, conquer these challenges, and not be defeated. It’s also exciting to see them succeed and improve their everyday lives. We are hopeful for the future and will continue to offer programs that focus on impacting a culture of health through S.T.E.A.M., social solutions, creativity, and innovation,” said Davis.
YFP’s mantra, implemented by Program Assistant Blanche Adams, is “If you believe, you can achieve.” The YFP staff believes, and that belief pushes them to create a great impact on scholars thus encouraging scholars to strive for excellence in school and life.