Middle College National Consortium (MCNC) Students Show Their “Stuff” at 19th Annual Student Leadership Initiative Conference

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150 Middle College National Consortium affiliated students came together at MCNC’s 19th annual Student leadership Initiative Conference to “show off” the projects that they’d been working on for the past year. This year’s conference focused on the relationship between Habitat and Humanity.

MCNC Student Leadership Initiative Conf.-2011

The MCNC Student Leadership Initiative made us think in ways we've never done before. We also made a lot of friends from around the country.

From April 27-May 1, 2011, 150 affiliated students and their Advisors participated in the 19th MCNC Student Leadership Initiative Conference in Tarboro, NC. The host school, Edgecombe Early College HS, worked for one year to prepare itineraries, accommodations and facilities. Each year, host schools from the Middle College National Consortium set a theme and engage youth from participating schools who come with presentations about their local projects and initiatives that support that theme. It’s a blend of good learning, good spirits and good fun.

This year students studied the relationship between Habitat and Humanity. Projects ranged from Henry Ford Early College students’(Dearborn, MI) study of native frog species in the Rouge River, to Hollis F. Price’s (Memphis, TN) Green Architectural Firm, to Brooklyn College Academy’s (Brooklyn, NY) day without technology that tested youth’s ability to live without electronics, phones, or Facebook for ONE WHOLE DAY. Students interpreted habitat to mean local community gardens planted in the center of urban, industrial waste (LaGuardia MCHS, International HS, RF Wagner JR HS) to improving the social ambiance of a whole school community (Brashier MCHS, Greenville, SC). Greenville Technical Charter HS students revitalized an aging, run-down community center to make it a vital center for local youth as well as a physical education space for their own students and California schools (MCHS at LA Southwest CC, Harbor Teachers Preparation Academy and Contra Costa ECHS) participated in teaching presentations on their campuses and local schools as well as beach, lake and park clean ups.

The host school, Edgecombe Early College HS, went in an entirely unique direction. They spent the year working with volunteers from the Department of Transportation building cardboard kayaks. These 4 watercrafts were built from plans, decorated, waterproofed and seated two people. The climax of the conference on Saturday afternoon was a Pig Pickin lunch followed by a kayak race at Indian Pond Park.

Each year MCNC raises the bar, the expectations and the quality of youth engagement through these Student Leadership Initiative Conferences. Next year, the conference will be held in Los Angeles and focus on the Environment and the Arts!
Middle College National Consortium, headquartered in New York City, is a leader in the movement to establish and sustain high school/college dual enrollment as a viable and necessary educational model. Middle College National Consortium's mission is to develop small schools in which high school students, especially those who have been previously underserved by their former schools, can earn both a high school diploma and either an Associate's Degree or transferable college credits upon graduation.

To learn more about the Middle College National Consortium, visit us at (http://www.mcnc.us/) for a comprehensive overview of our history, design principles, current work and achievements.

Contact information
Tony Hoffmann
Middle College National Consortium
http://mcnc.us

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