Parker Students Spend a Weekend to Find Innovative Solutions to Society’s Most Pressing Issues

Congratulations to Parker students Avalon Smith, Class of 2020, and Leena Mayberry, Class of 2019, whose entrepreneurial teams won first and second place respectively at University of California, San Diego (UCSD) Social Innovation Sprint Program in October.

The Social Innovation Sprint is a collaboration between UCSD’s Jacobs School of Engineering and the Rady School of Management, that focuses on teaching college and high school students essential design thinking and entrepreneurial skills in the context of thinking critically to solve society's most pressing issues.

The program accepts 41 students from UCSD and five local San Diego high schools including Bishop's, Helix Charter, Francis Parker School, Canyon Crest, and Pacific Ridge Schools. Over the two-day event, UCSD faculty guide teams of students to develop solutions to the selected topic of homelessness and human trafficking. Students gain insight into becoming an entrepreneur and learn marketing, ideating, prototyping and pitching skills from industry experts. At the end of the program, the students present their group’s innovative solution to address homelessness and human trafficking.

Avalon’s group called Know Idea won first place for their shuttle system idea that would incorporate stops to food pantries, clinics, and shelters for riders.

Leena’s group called Heart House won second place for their solution to work with shelters to designate a space within the shelter that is intentionally set aside to serve as a community center for homeless individuals.

Both Avalon and Leena’s group members each earned personal mentorships from local companies and successful entrepreneurs to help them with their future endeavors.
Francis Parker School is a private, independent, coeducational, college preparatory day school for students in Junior Kindergarten through Grade 12 from across San Diego County. Founded in 1912, the Lower School is located on the Mission Hills Campus with the Upper and Middle Schools on the Linda Vista Campus. Parker's mission is to inspire a diverse community of independent thinkers whose academic excellence, global perspective and strength of character prepare them to make a meaningful difference in the world.

Mission Hills Campus Lower School

4201 Randolph Street
San Diego, CA 92103

Linda Vista Campus Middle/Upper School

6501 Linda Vista Road
San Diego, CA 92111
858 / 569-7900