Curry Undergrads, Faculty Make Appearance in Several 2015-16 JPC Projects

The Jefferson Public Citizens Program has announced the thirteen projects it selected for funding during the 2015-16 academic year.  As in years’ past, students and faculty at the Curry School of Education make a strong presence in this round of projects. Seven Curry undergrads and three faculty members will be engaged in public service projects from Charlottesville to Uganda. Below is a listing of the JPC projects featuring Curry students and faculty. 


Gwendolyn ApgarEmily Campbell
JPC Group: Emily Campbell (Youth & Social Innovation major),  Maddy Guthrie, Gwendolyn Apgar (Kinesiology major), and Emory Yeargood
Faculty Advisor: Edith Lawrence, Professor, Curry School
Community Partner: Mbarara University of Science and Technology
Project Title: Empowerment Through Mentoring: Adapting YWLP in Mbarara, Uganda

Modeled on UVa’s Young Women Leaders Program (YWLP), YWLP Uganda will connect middle school girls and college women in Mbarara, Uganda for a year of mentoring. The program will focus on the YWLP goal of empowering women to be leaders. Using the YWLP Nicaragua and YWLP Cameroon program handbooks as a foundation, we will collaborate with faculty and students at Mbarara University to develop a curriculum that best meets the needs of adolescent girls there.


Shontell White
JPC Group: Shontell White (Youth & Social Innovation major), Savannah Maxwell, Jessica Nelms, Sierra Leickart, Abigail Osei, and Mary Hemenway (Youth & Social Innovation major)
Faculty Advisor: Edith Lawrence, Professor, Curry School
Community Partner: Albermarle High School and Charlottesville High School
Project Title: YWLP High: Promoting Young Women’s Leadership in High School

The YWLP High project will develop and pilot a mentoring program that supports the continued leadership development of girls in high school who participated in the Young Women Leaders Program (YWLP) during middle school. Building on training our team received as YWLP Big Sisters, we will create activities and a support structure for 11th & 12th grade YWLP alumnae at two area high schools, so that they can serve as Big Sisters to 9th and 10th grade YWLP alumnae.


JPC Group: Jack Baker (Youth & Social Innovation major), Selina Horsley, Joey Michel (Kinesiology major), and Allie Anderson (Youth & Social Innovation major) Faculty Advisor: Catherine Brighton, Associate Dean, Curry School Community Partner: Day in the Life Project Title: Hoos Enabling Academic Tutoring

To meet the increasing demand for trained UVA students to tutor youth from the local community, Hoos Enabling Academic Tutoring (HEAT) will work with UVa’s “Day In The Life” (DITL) program and its community site supervisors to enhance the program’s recruitment and training. To increase student recruitment, the HEAT project will develop and pilot student leadership opportunities in DITL; to ensure student preparedness to tutor, the HEAT project will develop and pilot online tutor-training modules.

Jack Baker2

Allie Anderson

Joey Michel








Curry School Faculty serving as advisors

JPC Group: Parisa Sadeghi, Aryn Frazier, Porter Nenon, and Chad Vickers
Faculty Advisor: Professor Stephen P. Plaskon, Associate Professor, Curry School and Director of Studies, Brown Residential College
Community Partner: Buford Middle School
Project Title: Examining the Impact of Participation in Debate on Charlottesville Students

Parents, teachers, and policymakers widely accept the positive impact of participation in after-school programs on middle school students. Current literature, however, contains little information on the isolated benefits of particular programs. Specifically, very little has been done to explore the effects of participating in debate. This project thus seeks to find the impact of debate on middle school students’ personal growth, particularly when compared to the effects of participating in other after-school activities.

JPC Group: Andrea Kleid, Emily Anthony, Melissa Picon, Katie Bland, and Meredith Stuhlman
Faculty Advisor: Melissa Levy, Assistant Professor, Curry School
Community Partner: Lincoln International Academy
Project Title: A Global Sisterhood: Strengthening the Global Connections Curriculum in YWLP

This JPC project aims to enhance the connection between the Young Women Leaders Program in Charlottesville and its sister sites in Nicaragua, Panama, and Cameroon. By collecting focus group and survey data, team members will revise the YWLP Global Connections curriculum, creating social media platforms that give mentors and mentees an opportunity to develop a global sisterhood.