The Sage

Genius Project Brings Professionals to Students

Kylie Valency and Julia Araujo

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Photo by Julia Araujo
Professionals Rena Bradham, Laurie Turbeville, Joanne Hackett and Kate Joiner pose for a photo in between English classes. The professionals take time out of their day to work with students during Genius time within their English classes.

Throughout the Genius Project journey, students have access to many resources including Professionals in the room. The English department has set up a system to inspire and guide students through problems in their projects.

These professionals are parents, grandparents, community members and staff.

Parent Kate Joiner became a professional after volunteering on the Genius Project committee last year.

“I really believe in the project,” Joiner said, “I love to learn more and see how this is evolving at Sage.”

For others, like retired teacher Pat Walton, she became a professional for her granddaughter, Jessica Tipton, who is in 11th grade.

“I wanted to know what was going on in the school and how I could help her so [becoming a professional] sounded wonderful,” Walton said, “I could learn about the genius project [and] help my granddaughter [while] keeping my hand in education.”

When students meet with professionals, they talk about their project and bumps in the road that have come up.

“[We] interview kids and help guide them with their timeline and looking at where they are at right now and what their next steps are,” Joiner said, “[We are] also helping them to learn how to track [their] success and make a goal.”

Senior Arleth Azpeitia feels like having the professionals in the room has helped to push her further in her project.

“I think it’s really good because you get different perspectives because every professional does something completely different. For all the professionals I’ve had they have helped tell me what to do next and get my ideas out there,” Azpeitia said, “It’s really good to just [get] help on your project [from] different views.”

Photo by Kylie Valency
Students talk to professionals about their Genius Projects on Friday, Nov. 2. Seniors and Juniors have the opportunity to talk with a wide variety of professionals to aid them in their Genius Projects.

On the same mindset, senior Tyler Hill feels like the professionals help with more than just the Genius Project.

“You have a better perspective of an actual business person and you can kind of reflect that into your genius project,” Hill said, “They teach you things [not only for your project but also things] you can use in your daily life.”

The professionals are there for more than just the Genius Project, they are there for each individual student.

“I want to see these kids take this not only through their senior year but beyond. I think that by implementing it now it makes the world a better place,” Joiner said, “Showing them that by being yourself and speaking out through this and sharing what they know and are passionate about [makes all the difference].”

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Genius Project Brings Professionals to Students