For my capstone project, I decided to not run away from the underlying issue the CO2020 seniors had to face. COVID-19. I wanted to embrace that this is going on and that people around the world are dealing with this and connect it to something I'm very passionate about. I created an article that highlights how to navigate a global crisis with a food business. This is very important to me because businesses across the globe have had to shut down for over 2 months, and I know exactly what that does for the plans and operation of a business. In my article, I provided multiple suggestions and resources for businesses to take into consideration if ever in this crazy situation. I have also conducted an interview with the Executive Chef and Owner of Mia & Me Catering, Mr. William R. Johnson. You can find my article on multiple sites and now SLATE! Enjoy!
Hello, my name is Ivan Lopez JR and I am a student at Science leadership academy (or SLA for short). At SLA they offer more freedom than any other school and are very open minded to its students. They are more than willing to help any student struggling to learn and help prepare them for their future as a hard working adult. I had recently finished a project made by SLA called a “Capstone” which is a project that shows how much you’ve learned in your 4 years at SLA and how you use their core values. In this project you are free to choose any topic and research it until late May and early June in which you present to fellow classmates and teachers. My topic was on how entertainment and politics do not merge well and lead to very bad movies/comics or games. I chose this topic because I am very passionate about these kinds of things and view them as a way to relax or a quick get away from the world and its harshness or just people being over the top. Using my research skills, I looked for articles that involved entertainment and how it gets slandered due to the contents within it being taken to the extreme or praised because it’s doing something very modernly political. There are multiple examples of this that I have personally seen and some I found during my research: like an all female cast for a film or having a gay or transgender person as part of the cast or saying things like “the FIRST modernly political character”. Along with my dad, we brainstormed ideas and ways to present my project. Part of my research includes life experiences which makes me very set on doing this project. One idea we had was a blog where I would make a discussion thread and post questions to see how people felt about some of these topics. We decided against this because it was very labor intensive and has the ability to be taken in different directions than intended. Later, we decided that a survey would be given to the school and sent to the students email. The survey would be filled out by the students to help get a look at how other people feel about this topic. We made sure that in our questions we weren’t putting any of our own opinions into them and none of the questions were meant to offend. Despite this, the school didn’t want to have their name attached to the survey which led to some problems for our project. Some of the terms that I wanted to use were deemed offensive. I understand the school’s stance on their image and the importance of protecting their students. But, my opinion is just as important as any other students at SLA. My Capstone depends on my opinion and my views on this topic which can be very controversial. But, that's just how life is and not everyone will agree with me or have the same views. So, instead of fighting over the survey, and after discussion with one of my advisors, we made it into a research project. I used the internet and TV for all of my research and used my life experiences of growing up alongside entertainment to see it slowly change over time. Another thing that made the Capstone difficult was the Coronavirus. It was tough trying to figure out how to move forward with this while not being in school. The first part of the year was hard enough because we were going to be in a new building. Then we had to be in the district building. This created enough chaos to cause confusion about what the Capstone is and what was expected from me. Not being around teachers and other students made this tough. What I’m most proud of during this project is the topic itself. I knew immediately that I wanted to do this topic and I’m proud that I chased after it without any doubt or regret. The research is also something I’m proud of because I looked for exactly what I wanted and ended up finding them very easily because of how much people like to politically nitpick over everything. My dad is also a big part of this project and has helped me throughout the entire process of making this project and for that I am both proud and grateful for having a father that supports as well as helping me when I need it most.
Being a dancer in a company for several years has impacted my life in many ways. My favorite is being apart of performances, But for a more valued experience performing I wanted to know how I could improve our group performances in the company. My capstone was all about building better communication in a group setting for a better performance. To do this I had to hold a team activity event. The event took place on February 9th, where we got to know eachother better at MIY artistry LLC while making crafts. the even all together lasted about two hours. On top of this project I decided to create a short video that highlighted any fun moments the company had throughout the season.
My Capstone question was "How can I use my voice to inform others events going on in the world" and I decided to focus on the crisis going on at the border with immigrant children. For my Capstone, I created a lesson that I could present to one of Ms.Jonas class, in this lesson I would explain and give facts about the cruel reality of these children, I would also hold an in-class debate so students could voice their opinions. Below you can see the clip on how the class went and some of the questions asked. This project allowed me to use all five core values and create a project in which I can make a difference. Throughout this entire project, I learned that no matter how small the audience you can always make an impact, by advocating you're helping to get the news out. Be the change you want to see in the world.
For my senior capstone, I decided to try to create a STEM after-school program that introduces STEM to younger kids that didn’t have much exposure. It was to be called “Games: Behind the Scenes.” This program was to introduce STEM by looking at how a game is made aka coding. They would have learned what coding is, its basic terms, and much more. I wanted to do this capstone so that I could give the same experience I had when I learned of STEM at SLA to people who aren’t exposed to it as much. The first step was to have my idea fully develop. I didn’t want to go into doing this capstone only knowing part of your plan. This included doing research. I had to find out what it takes to run a program and how to keep it engaging. After much research, I design my program. I had to make a simple game that would be used as an example to help explain coding. I also had to design the curriculum and layout of the program. This helped me in writing my proposal that would be presented when I presented my program to schools. Sadly, because of C-19, those plans were put at a halt. Nonetheless, I learn that time should be used wisely, never “marry” an idea, and to be prepared. Down below is the curriculum of the program and a video of the game ‘Target’ being played.