“In the end we retain from our studies only that which we practically apply.” – Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
Ascend is a project-based higher education program, which means that the core of what we do is focused on helping students to translate their academic and nonacademic studies into practical, actionable steps that equip them for life. We believe they are called to greater things than most people settle for, that there are often better ways to learn those things than merely sitting in a classroom, and that their education should functionally equip them for a life of impact.
Toward that end, each student completes an Ascend project every year. A keystone element to Ascend, these projects give students the opportunity to explore potential career paths, achieve a significant personal or professional accomplishment, build their resume and portfolio, learn about resilience and failure, and learn how to work alone and with others. In Year One, students complete the Ascend Foundations project — a personal project that gives them a powerful introduction into the process of turning an idea into reality.
Through their Foundations Project, each student learns to apply the knowledge and principles they have gained throughout the year’s academic study, webinars, events, and team meetings — and through all the life they’ve lived outside the “classroom”. Each subsequent year of Ascend provides additional specifications and challenges to the student until they ultimately lead a project team themselves.