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Diversity Awareness

Path to Pattison's

Path to Pattison’s capstone project featured the charter school, Pattison’s Academy. The Academy provides training and therapy for children with serve disabilities. Respecting and valuing the mission and services that Pattison’s provides, the group chose to focus on those external customers servicing the Pattison’s students. To that end, the group interviewed Occupational Therapy students from the Medical University of South Carolina that work with the students at Pattison’s to gauge their readiness for interacting with the diverse student body.

Pencil Pushers

Pencil Pushers focused on a sustainability plan for the Teacher’s Supply Closet. The Teacher’s Supply Closet provides free supplies for K-12 Teachers in Charleston, Berkley and Dorchester counties. Over the last ten years, the Teacher Supply Closet has gone from serving teachers working at schools with 100% of students in poverty to now serving schools with 79% poverty index. In the next few years they hope to expand to schools with a 50% poverty index.


Members of Prism focused on a desire to ensure that all young people have the opportunity to embrace, learn, and grow from their individual diversity. They sought to unify the community by raising awareness about the experiences of children in South Carolina.

Project A.W.A.R.E.: (Fostering) Awareness Within an All-Inclusive and Respectful Environment

PROJECT A.W.A.R.E. is a three-hour instructional program on diversity, including its definitions and its importance, which will be delivered to ninth-grade students at Columbia High School in their Advisory Groups.  Each year thereafter the Advisory Groups would deliver similar diversity instruction to the incoming ninth grade class, thus sustaining the momentum.

Project C.O.O.L.: Celebrating Others through Opportunities in Learning

Members of Project C.O.O.L brought together a diverse group of high school students from various schools in the Lowcountry to create an opportunity for them to mirror some of the experiences that DLI participants experience throughout their class interactions. Group members aimed to create an opportunity for discussion after sharing two activities in the community.

Project Discovery

Project Discovery is the result of an innovative partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Upstate, Carver Middle School and DLI that provides 18 high-performing students with an opportunity to get an interactive view of three Upstate employers. Boys & Girls Club members will get an in-depth look at facilities and feature hands-on activities and informal discussions with business leaders to discuss future career options and study.

REAP: Reading Enrichment from Away Parents

The REAP team mission is based on a program called “Books Beyond” that was established at the Rhode Island Department of Corrections. The program aims to strengthen the bond between children and their incarcerated parents through books. The REAP program is carried out in three simple steps: first, volunteers work with inmates to choose collected, donated, or purchased books that they would like to share with their children. Second, those books are then read and recorded onto a recording device.

SAFY - Specialized Alternative for Families of Youth

Specialized Alternatives for Families and Youth (SAFY) is a national non-profit organization that provides a continuum of services for children and youth in child welfare and juvenile justice system. Specifically, it assists foster children with a range of services to create an environment that positively impacts their lives and the lives of their families and their communities.   SAFY currently has three chapters in South Carolina, including one in the upstate.

Smart Board

Smart Board members developed a tool kit to assist board members when hiring individuals to a Board of Directors position within a non-profit organization. Using "Hands on Greenville" (HOG) as the target organization, group members completed an analysis of the community that HOG serves as well as an inventory of its board members and the constituencies it currently targets. From this analysis, group members devised a tool kit that would be instrumental in the process of attracting new and diverse people, who would add to the diversity management of HOG's board.


From the outset, Sojourners sought to develop a Capstone Project that would broaden the discussion of diversity among upstate youth. Our team believes that achieving trusting interpersonal relations, which bridge racial, economic, gender, religious, ethnic, and other cultural and social boundaries is critical to building peace. Providing a forum where young people may discover, understand, welcome and celebrate the similarities and differences among people will serve to provide new pathways and real opportunities for sustainable inclusive communities.