Engaging Over Summer
Over the summer many Charlotte Christian students and faculty are continuing their education by participating in a variety of programs, conferences, trips, and internships that will take place locally, around the country, and across the globe. Here are a few summaries from their experiences.
Grade 8 & 9 Summer Mission Trip in Appalachian Mountains
The week of June 19-23 Charlotte Christian eighth and ninth graders participated in the 2016 summer mission trip in the Appalachian Mountains in Jefferson City, Tenn. A group of 28 students were the “hands and feet of Jesus” as they served the community through home repair and volunteering at the Ministry Center. There were multiple tasks the students tackled. They painted a house and garage, replaced a roof, and built a deck with stairs. Students also helped organize donations at the Ministry Center. Students spent the entire day on the job site and then would enjoy group reflection and devotion time with each other at night. The week was just as rewarding for those who were being served, as it was for those who were serving. The students came to work each day with joyful smiles and attitudes and really dove into the work whole-heartedly and exhibited servants’ hearts. Those helped by the students saw their dedication and kindness each day.
“This trip gave our students the opportunity to put their faith into action,” said Mrs. Amy O’Bryan, middle school counselor and trip coordinator. “Every student showed up ready to work hard and were so passionate about serving the homeowner and others in the community. It was neat to watch them try things they had never done before and walk away with new found confidence and life skills!"
HOBY Leadership Conference
Rising junior Terrelle Brown attended the Hugh O'Brian Youth (HOBY) Leadership Conference at Wake Forest University June 10-12 among 120 other students. HOBY programs provide students selected by their schools to participate in unique leadership training, service-learning and motivation-building experiences. The weekend included three phases: personal leadership, group leadership, and society leadership. The students interacted with panels and were involved in service projects. Terrelle was awarded the Outstanding Leadership Award, given to the top 10 students in recognition of their leadership ability.
Digital Media Camp at Mercer University
Rising junior Sara Shepherd attended the Digital Media Camp at Mercer University, in Macon, Ga. June 10-19. The camp hosted rising 10th-12th grade students with an interest in journalism and digital media, teaching the latest digital tools with an emphasis on mobile journalism. Sara worked at the Center for Collaborative Journalism on Mercer’s campus with their faculty gaining knowledge in mobile apps, script, social media, radio, video and writing and photography skills. The camp incorporated real-life experiences through projects that allowed the students to film subjects and write on specific topics. “Over the past 10 days, I have learned more than I could have ever imagined, developed goals, and made friends for life,” shared Sara. “Before this camp, I had a feeling I wanted to go into sports journalism, but now there is no doubt in my mind.”
Wake Forest Immersion Program in Medicine
Rising seniors Austin Glover, McKenzie Lewis and Mackenzie Ray all attended the Medicine Institute hosted by the Wake Forest Immersion Program in Charlotte June 13-17. The students gained a first-person view into the medical field, interacting with physicians through hands-on experiences and gained insight into career opportunities in medicine and medical research. The non-residential program also provided a day trip to tour the Wake Forest University campus in Winston-Salem.
“I thought it was a great experience,” said junior McKenzie Lewis. “They made sure there was a wide variety of speakers to tell us about their area of expertise in the medical field. It was really neat to have the opportunity to tour Wake Forest as well as visit the hospital and spend time in the operating rooms with surgeons and anesthesiologists who gave us a run down of all they do.”
American Legion Auxiliary Tar Heel Girls State
Rising senior Nkiru Afulukwe attended the American Legion Auxiliary Tar Heel Girls State conference June 12-18 on the campus of Catawba College in Salisbury, N.C. American Legion Auxiliary Tar Heel Girls State is a week-long workshop in the legislative process sponsored by the North Carolina American Legion Auxiliary. For a week in June, approximately 250 of North Carolina's most promising rising high school senior girls from every part of the state come together to learn about and participate in various parts of government. Nkiru participated in the creation of a city government, formulated party platforms within her city precinct, debated those platforms and wrote bills within her committed in the House of Representatives, both of which were passed.
Nkiru was one of two girls selected as a Girls Nation senator to represent North Carolina. With the appointment, she will attend the American Legion Auxiliary Girls Nation July 23-30 in Washington, D.C. This experience is held in the nation’s capital and is designed to provide practical insight into how the federal government works, instill a sense of pride and loyalty to America and create lasting friendships.
North Carolina State Computer Science Workshop
Rising senior Mark Trotter attended the “There Must be an App for That!” computer science workshop at NC State June 19-24 in Raleigh, N.C. During the workshop, he explored the skills necessary to describe, design, implement and test an Android application. They learned the basic computer science skills behind algorithm development and logic and discussed how computer science ideas translate to emerging technologies such as mobile and cloud computing.
SHAPED to Serve Students Partner with Proverbs 22:6
In early August, the Charlotte Christian middle school SHAPED to Serve class hosted a backpack distribution event at Charlotte Christian School to benefit Proverbs 22:6, a prison reform ministry that works to support children of local prison inmates. One hundred and ten participants were in attendance, including 80 children of inmates. Each child received a backpack full of school supplies that had been packed by their parent in prison, along with a personal note from their parent sharing how much they loved them and encouraging them to do well in school. Statistics show that 70-80 percent of children who have a parent in prison will one day find themselves in prison. The mission of Proverbs 22:6 is to prevent this from happening by working with incarcerated parents to help them build strong relationships with their children. The SHAPED to Serve class is a middle school elective class led by Mr. Brandon Henderson that helps students get involved in serving their local communities and help others in need. The Charlotte Christian students have partnered with the Proverbs 22:6 ministry to develop a mentoring program that reaches out to children with incarcerated parents and includes exchanging e-mails and some face-to-face events to provide encouragement and support.
Gordon College Elevate Leadership Lab 2016
Three Charlotte Christian upper school students were selected to participate in the 2016 Gordon College Leadership Lab held on the campus of Gordon College, just north of Boston, Mass. Juniors Grace Baker and Lila Hamilton, along with senior Elizabeth Gown all participated. The program invited high school students from across the country and the world to participate in a weeklong lab designed to build leadership skills and develop programs to impact their communities. Senior Elizabeth Gowan shared from her experience, “This summer I was fortunate to spend a week at Gordon College as part of the Elevate Leadership Lab with many wonderfully passionate people. This year’s cohort included close to 60 students coming from all different states and countries. While our geography didn’t necessarily unite us, our desire to enact change in our communities did. As part of the application to the program, we each submitted an issue which we were specifically passionate about. I was honored when my idea was voted as one of the top six ideas and enjoyed working with a team of eight other students to develop a mentorship program called S.T.E.P. (Standing Together to Empower Peers). The week pushed me not only intellectually, but also as a leader. I learned not only how to identify my strengths, but also the strengths of others. By focusing on the strengths found in others rather than the weaknesses in myself, we were able to create a project we were proud of and knew would positively impact our peers. My week at Elevate was definitely one to remember and a huge highlight of my summer.”