At the School Board meeting of May 19, 2021, School Board Vice-Chair Dr. Steve Gallon III recognized Miami Norland Senior High School students for being the grand prize winners of the Aspen Challenge.
Launched by the Aspen Institute and the Bezos Family Foundation in 2012, the Aspen Challenge provides inspiration, tools, and a platform for young people to address critical issues and become leaders in their communities. In Miami, 160 students and 40 educators embarked on the Aspen Challenge journey in February with a day of inspiration and engagement from cross-sector leaders. During the Challenge Forum, these leaders challenged Miami students to create solutions for issues including environmental literacy, inclusive communities, gun violence, mental health and poverty alleviation. Teams representing twenty high schools from across the county accepted one of the five challenges presented and had ten weeks to design solutions that would create a better, more equitable Miami.
Miami Norland Senior High School chose the poverty alleviation challenge issued by Helah Robinson of LIFT, to increase financial literacy and create awareness of resources such as banking options for students to form a better future for families in their community. The goal was to ensure that all young people understand that “poverty is not a lone fight, and there are places to lean on when you are falling behind.”
Each winning team member received a MacBook Pro laptop, AirPod Max headphones, and a $2,500 scholarship for continuing education.
“I remain extremely proud to honor the tremendous work and success of the students at Miami Norland Senior High School, said Dr. Gallon. “Their continued commitment to not only academic achievement but also to a spirit of altruism—-focused on helping others through the elimination of poverty and increasing financial literacy. Congratulations to the school’s leadership, teachers, staff, and students on winning the 2021 Aspen Challenge Grand Prize.”