The Inquiry and Innovation Program at SHC

i2 Scholars Presented Project Ideas
Scholars spent much of their fall semester working on developing their ideas for their projects this year. After meeting several times to develop and review their ideas, students met over the course of three nights before Thanksgiving to present their proposals to a group of judges who queried the student about their projects to make sure the proposed projects had been well researched, were viable, and had a clear plan.

As we begin 2023: i2 Scholars are now moving forward on their projects, working through a cycle of pushing forward, testing their progress, making necessary changes, and again pushing forward.

Here are a few of the proposals.

The Inquiry & Innovation Program (i2) is a four-year leadership and enrichment program that challenges students to inquire how their capabilities and passions can serve communities from the local to global scale and to explore innovative ways to do so effectively.

The i2 Program develops students’ problem-solving, creativity, analytical abilities, and leadership skills through a curriculum that integrates STEM, liberal arts, and service. Through annual projects, field trips, talks, performances, and outdoor adventures, students examine and address ideas and issues outside the classroom.

As they involve themselves in the many programs at SHC, including Robotics, the Student Launch Initiative, and TEDxYouth@SHC, i2 students build their capacity to create positive change in the world.

Starting in the 9th grade, i2 students get to know each other and begin to build a sense of community through dedicated ninth-grade Physics and World History courses.
(click here to learn more)

Madison Li, a junior, is our inaugural i2 scholar in the spotlight. Over the past two years, Madison has done two fabulously inventive projects. The first, AI Picasso, combined computer imaging and computer-controlled sketching. Users would have their photo taken by the system and the image would be used as the basis for a sketch drawn by a computer-controlled device of Madison’s design. The second project, Raspberry Band, enabled users to scan in sheet music which would be converted to a computer-readable format, and then played via three Raspberry Pi-controlled wands on a xylophone (again designed and made by Madison.

She credits her father, a programmer, with help getting her started and pointers to get her going in the right direction, and her mother, a piano teacher, with help on the music side along with materials. Madison herself plays the piano, flute, and alto sax. Her coding experience was launched in middle school when she got involved with Girls Who Code, as well as robotics at SHC which helped her improve her coding skills. (click here for more…)

  • Senior Projects: Not surprisingly, many of the seniors have been infected with Senioritis, especially now that quite a number have begun to hear back from colleges. Seniors are now helping out underclass folks on their projects and will be acting as judges at the Showcase.
  • Junior Projects: There are a bunch of really exciting projects underway among the 11th graders. Machine learning, thanks to the guidance and mentorship of i2 senior Pascal Reich, is showing up in a number of projects. One to keep an eye on is Lantern AI, a terrific project around learning to read Mandarin. Another project worth checking out involves building insoles for shoes with embedded piezoelectric elements that enable people to recharge their phones by simply walking around.
  • Sophomore Projects: Lots of fascinating projects this year are coming out the sophomore class. Matthew Spillane is completing a cloud chamber that will enable us to see the trails left by virtually invisible particles passing through our environment every day. Luke Moore is completing a project he started last year, a robotically controlled sand table, and a small team is building a Web site devoted to highlighting and curating mental health resources available to high school-age students.
  • Frosh Projects: The 9th-graders are working on a range of cool projects. Michael Bridon and Sam Wai on conducting a study on the impact of social media on students’ body image. Be sure to check out the projects page for more!

We know this is a bit aspirational – and we’re not sure how if we can make this work, but…we’re reaching out to i2 graduates in hopes that we can hear from all you out there and catch up on what you’re doing, hear your stories and learn about your adventures.  Shoot us a note and tell us what you’re up to!

Please feel free to contact Dabney Standley or Mariflor Medrano with any questions, updates, offers of help, and support! We’d love to hear from you.


Here are some of the recent i2 events

Senior Rafting Trip

Junior Kayaking Trip

Sophomore Ziplining

Student Launch Initiative