Today the Student Leadership Academy of Chattanooga is active in six elementary schools across Hamilton County. Originally created in 2013 to equip students with necessary skills to expand vision through a growth mindset and overcome the obstacles of poverty, the framework has taken on many forms as it has grown and developed.

When you see students out in the community wearing their Student Leadership T-shirt, you will notice confidence and pride. These kids take their role very seriously and work to be a role model not only in their school but community. Community service, team building, public speaking, and collaboration with people all over Chattanooga are only a few of the things you will see a student leader doing on a regular basis.

Created by Lindsey Hagan and Patricia Russell, the Times Free Press wrote a piece on the Student Leadership Academy in its second year when the educators were nominated as “Corporate Innovator of the Year” by the Young Professionals Association of Chattanooga. You can read more here.

Spring Creek Elementary has used their Service Day to volunteer at their local animal shelter the past two years. Students make dog treats, read to the animals, and help the shelter clean and care for the animals. Students take time to write reflections on their experiences after each application day. One student said, “Service is doing something without asking for anything in return.”

“”The task of leadership is not to put greatness into humanity, but to elicit it, for the greatness is already there.” — John Buchan

Students and Teachers across Chattanooga are intentionally working to provide learning experiences that elicit the greatness in our students and teachers. The best part is the participating schools aren’t the only ones benefiting from the success of the Student Leadership Academy — it’s impacting the entire community.

For more information about the Student Leadership Academy of Chattanooga contact Lindsey Hagan or Patricia Russell at hagan_lindsey@hcde.org or russell_patricia@hcde.org.