In order to increase student engagement a large part of the AmeriCorps mission in DPS is to create service projects. At Summit Academy, Alvie Cueto and I created a survey to best gauge the interest of students so we could create the best service projects possible. The top choice by far turned out to be a fashion design.
I took this input and literally traveled miles to various places, seeking out donor after donor to help me start the Fashion Design Club. My biggest supporter however turned out to be right across the street from the school. Her name is Cara Mead, College View Elementary’s school psychologist. She was informed of Summit’s need for design materials by AmeriCorps member, Jessica Beegle. Ms. Mead graciously supplied us with overflowing bundles of fashionista goodies from fabric to sewing needles.
This project has needed periodic resuscitation in order to keep its heart and soul beating for the handful of interested students. There have been a number of strategic attempts to help alleviate such barriers. For instance, initially this project was set for Monday afternoons. After talking with a staff member, I learned that it may be difficult for some students to attend certain events after school due to their jobs and desires to…leave the school campus? The latter caught me by surprise…I mean why would any student want to leave right after school…as soon as they can? So I moved the club to Wednesday mornings and attendance has been better.
All in all, the fashion club continues on and the scholars of Summit will continue to make awesome fashion and push the limits of their creativity through design.
– AmeriCorps Member Tina Yanez