“Inquiry, Innovation, and Impact” are themes woven into Mount Vernon Presbyterian School’s mission statement, which is why students in grades 9-12 annually complete an (i)Project. These projects are driven by curiosity and passion, and real-world purpose inspires the work.
Last year, students in the Technology, Engineering, and Design class, in collaboration with the global volunteer network e-Nable, created 3D-printed prosthetic hands for a local Georgia teenager. Emily Moseley, who’s now a junior, was so inspired that her goal for her (i)Project this year is to “not only print as many hands for people as I can, but design my own model. I want it to be the most functional and durable hand e-Nable has to give out to volunteers all over the world.”
Upper school students may also apply for the selective four-year iDiploma program. This year, in addition to other ventures, students in the program are working on site plans for an outdoor 11-acre community space — part of a larger high-end retail complex anchored by Whole Foods. “It has the potential to change the landscape and the community,” says Bo Adams, Chief Learning and Innovation Officer at MVPS, “which is why we’re so excited to be part of this incredible venture.”
Design thinking is infused throughout the Preschool-12 curriculum, which aims to equip students with the vital skills necessary to address the needs of the community through empathy, teamwork, problem-solving, and leadership. The school was recently selected to join Ashoka’s Changemaker Schools, a global community of leading elementary, middle, and high schools that serve as models for cultivating these skills in students and showing what education in the new framework looks like.