In early September, 18 eSTEM Academy students graduated from the Global Scholar Diploma program that is offered by the Columbus Council on World Affairs. This three-year program’s mission is to increase global competence and understanding through collaboration and thought leadership. This year, 1,200 high school students from across the region are a part of the program, working to solve the world’s most pressing problems.
The goal of the GSD is to prepare young people for success in the changing globalized world by developing knowledge, skills and mindsets to be globally competent and culturally understanding. Students are asked to identify a global issue and present ways to address the issue, locally.
As part of the program, students complete a Take Action Project. The Take Action Project culminates in the students’ third and final year and demonstrates the abilities they have cultivated over the first two years. Students choose a globally-oriented issue about which they are passionate, and pursue a leadership role in implementing a solution at a local level. Throughout the project, students are in contact with advisors who guide them through the development and execution of their project, and ultimately present their experiences to their peers and the community. Through this process students discover the connection between global issues and local communities. The global issues that these students have chosen to tackle are varied, ranging from environmental protection projects to confronting poverty and social injustice.
This class of Global Scholar Diploma recipients was the largest class to date with more than 200 students. We are pleased that all four academies are participating in the Global Scholars Program this year, allowing more students to become change agents and global leaders.
Take Action Project Highlights
Aliyah Webb, RHS Class of 2020, created the Busy Bee Arts and Crafts program. The goal was to teach children about art around the world by creating fun and unique art projects and crafts such as learning calligraphy, designing mandalas, making Diwali lanterns and more.
Naomi Asmare, RHS Class of 2020, tells us about her Take Action Project:
My Take Action plan was to help to support the Ethiopian community here in Columbus. I proposed that a youth group be created within the Ethiopian community in order for the younger generation to be more engaged and be more involved in having these conversations so that one day they could rise to be the leaders. The establishment of the youth group was approved and within the first week, we had about 30 kids that joined and were willing to help reach my goal. We hold meetings once every month in an Ethiopian Orthodox Church in downtown Columbus to talk about what we deem important and we also established a mentorship program within the group. In these meetings, we came to the agreement that the most important things to us is expanding our culture and helping out the people back home who are less fortunate than us. Our approach to these issues was to hold a large event, invite people of the Ethiopian community and outside of it to help spread our culture, raise awareness, and potentially raise money for a school to be built in Northern Ethiopia. During the actual event, we had a pretty great show out with about 300 people. By the end of the night, we had raised over ten thousand dollars for the school and had been able to share our culture with many new people.
RCS Superintendent Melvin J. Brown said, “We are so pleased and excited that our students who graduate from the Global Scholars Diploma program are positioned to make an incredible mark on the global landscape and are poised to change the world as informed and engaged global citizens. This important notion is one of the key competencies of our Portrait of a Graduate and we are thrilled that our students will be applying these experiences to solve real-world problems to create a better society for all.”
“We have been very happy to partner with the Columbus Council on World Affairs to offer our students the opportunity to earn the Global Scholars Seal on their diplomas,” said eSTEM Academy Principal Scott Bennett. “As a part of the program, our students have worked hard to develop capstone projects that have made a positive impact on their community and we are exceptionally proud of all of their hard work.”
The ceremony was held virtually on September 17 and you can watch it through a self-guided experience here: https://bit.ly/3j6ar2c
Congratulations to the RHS 2020 Global Scholars Diploma Graduates!
Mary Acosta Gorman