Santa Clara University


Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative (NPI)

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 Jessica Sullivan

Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2013

I have been passionate about helping the Washington neighborhood since I first ventured into the community on a Saturday morning a little over a year ago.  I was lucky enough to be a part of the founding group of the Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative, working with 10 other business students and our fearless leader, Jackie, to create a sustainable relationship and bond between the Leavey School of Business and the Washington community.  As a sophomore, I am so excited to continue my involvement in NPI throughout the upcoming years and watch it grow and develop as more students engage in the community by getting involved in NPI.

Currently, I am serving as the liaison between Washington Elementary School and NPI and am receiving independent study units for my work.  I am responsible for planning and executing events for SCU’s business students to motivate, teach, and inspire the Washington Elementary students to become leaders and successful students with bright futures.  I have the pleasure of working closely with Brian O’Halloran, a dedicated volunteer at Washington who donates around 20 hours every week to the students at Washington and is responsible for starting multiple clubs on campus for aspiring leaders.

Another founding member of NPI, Erica Valle, and I hosted a Resume Workshop on a Saturday morning in the school’s library for fourth and fifth graders.  The students listened to our presentation on the components of a resume, engaged in a few games and verbal quizzes, and even began writing their own resumes.  We had volunteers from SCU’s professional business fraternity, Alpha Kappa Psi, walk around helping the Washington students draft their resumes on the computers.  The students gave their completed resumes to Erica and I to edit, and we sent them back to make the final changes.  It is so amazing that these students, some as young as 9 years old, have not only improved confidence in themselves as a student and leader, but also completed resumes that accurately depict their skills and involvement in clubs and groups.

Right now I am in the process of recruiting SCU students to participate in a program called Coach by Mail.  It is an eight week motivational program that we believe will improve the test scores of the Washington students that are performing 'below basic' on the California Standardized Tests.  SCU students, among others, will be corresponding via email and face to face visits with the Washington students to motivate and encourage them to keep focused at school and their studies.  I have high hopes for the program.  I look forward to developing many more programs and events for SCU students to positively affect the lives of the Washington Elementary students.

NPI has enhanced my entire experience as a Leavey School of Business student.  I am so proud of the strides we have made and all that we have accomplished, and would highly recommend that you get involved in NPI.

Warm regards,

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