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North Springs Students Win Top Prize at Leadership Conference

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The three students participated in the GenHeration Summer Leadership Series held Aug. 3 at Atlanta Tech Village.


Aji John, Phalne Hammond, Katlyn Grasso - GenHERation Founder and Chief Executive Officer, and Vanessa Lovinsky

While most eighth grade students leave middle school for high school never to return again, Phalne Hammond, Vanessa Lovinsky and Aji John did just the opposite.

The three North Springs Charter High School students were so appreciative of their experience at Sandy Springs Education Force’s After-School All-Stars program at Sandy Springs Charter Middle School, that each day during their freshman year, they traveled back to help mentor other students in the program.

ASAS serves 175 predominately economically disadvantage students after school with academic support and enrichment.

As a result of their commitment and dedication, the North Springs trio won top prize in the Social Innovation Challenge at the GenHeration Summer Leadership Event held Aug. 3 at Atlanta Tech Village. Ross Perloe, of MyLTC, Inc., underwrote the students’ participation fees and helped them create the award winning project presentation.

“It was truly fun as well as informative,” said North Springs sophomore Aji John. “I met amazing women who defied the odds when it comes to succeeding in fields not typically open to women. What Katlyn does is very inspiring and empowering. It was an awesome experience and we are all appreciative of the opportunity and the award.”

Started as a school project by Katlyn Grasso, now a senior at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, GenHERation® is a female empowerment network for millennial girls.

The GenHeration Summer Leadership Series visited 10 cities across the US this summer. The 2015 program theme of Passion & Purpose focused on showcasing and inspiring thought-leadership that will move young women to improve their lives and communities.

The Sandy Springs Education Force is the city’s leading educational organization dedicated to inspiring and supporting all Sandy Springs public school students to graduate and pursue productive lives beyond high school by providing educational and enrichment programs through community collaboratives.

For more information, visit the organization’s website.

Photo: From left to right, Aji John, Phalne Hammond, Katlyn Grasso – GenHERation Founder and Chief Executive Officer, and Vanessa Lovinsky. Credit: Sandy Springs Education Force.

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