Summit Park Leadership Community

Muscular Dystrophy Association

Team members: Alyssa Hertel, Marissa Coultas, Shreya Bhargava

Faculty Advisor: Ed Derr                                                                                               

Community Contacts: Jerry Bear

This year, our goals are to make others on campus and throughout the community aware of what MDA supports and how Muscular Dystrophy affects people in the world. The mission of MDA is leading the fight to free individuals — and the families who love them — from the harm of Muscular Dystrophy, ALS and related muscle-debilitating diseases that take away physical strength, independence and life. We support their mission and believe that it would be easy and helpful to make others in the community aware of the problems that people with muscular dystrophy face everyday. Whenever more people are aware of this problem, they could be more prone to help them and make them feel like they matter and that people care about them. Maybe we could even convince them to help donate for the purpose of funding research. We plan on helping them out in the office where they need it the most right now, as well as, volunteering for events that they hold annually to raise awareness. 

The Miracle League

Team Members:  Katelyn Coley, Liesia Salazar, Christina Beard,

Faculty Advisor: Lori Slater

Community Contact: Cyrus Taylor

The mission statement of the Miracle League is, “to provide opportunities for children with disabilities to play Miracle League baseball regardless of their abilities” and to “promote community support and sponsorship of Miracle Leagues.” They also strive to “promote the construction of special facilities that meet the unique needs of Miracle League players and their families.” Throughout the course of this year, we intend to raise awareness of the league’s existence to our community along with sharing their goals and what they do for the disabled. Our main task is to raise money that will offset the cost of attendance for players and families to the end-of-season barbecue held by the Miracle League.

Nixa Public Schools

Team Members: Lydia Dickensheet, Ashley Everett, Natalie Gusewell, Leah Weber 

Faculty/Staff Advisor: Nancy Chikaraishi and Traci Sooter

Community Contact: John Thomas School of Discovery

This year we will be working with Nixa Public Schools at John Thomas School of Discovery. Together, we will be working to design and build an outdoor classroom for JTSD’s campus. Advising us on this project will be Nancy Chikaraishi along with Traci Sooter. Our vision for this project is to create an alternative learning space for classrooms to meet and learn more about the environment around them. We will do this by consulting administrators, teachers, and students in order to create a design that everyone will enjoy. In this space, we hope use native Missouri plants in order to create at least two different kinds of gardens. In addition to this, we will design and build a pergola as well as seating to make a central meeting place for classes. We hope that this project supplements JTSD’s STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) mission by creating a hands-on learning environment.

Community Partnership of the Ozarks

Team Members: Olivia Smith, Mary Bassham, Alissa Boubel, Jessica Archuleta-Trujillo 

Faculty Advisor: Allin Sorenson

Community Contact: Brooke Ash

 Our main goals for this year are to promote the creation of in within the education system and foster an environment of creativity in young students. We are partnering with Community Partnership of the Ozark, whose goal is “to facilitate and promote the building of resilient children, healthy families, and strong neighborhoods and communities through collaboration, programming, and resource development.” We feel that through this partnership, we will provide growing minds with access to the knowledge of art techniques, give them a safe creative outlet, and cultivate a rounded education and appreciation in the arts. 

Boyd Elementary


Summit Team Members: Lydia Sharp, Haley Olsen, Courtney King, Megan Paul

Faculty Advisor: Andrea Battaglia

Community Contact: Andrea Battaglia

The mission of Boyd Elementary is to “develop internationally-minded learners who form real-world connections and inspire action toward peace.” Our goal while working with Boyd is to build relationships with children we work with to boost their self-confidence and make sure they have someone to turn to when they need it. We are planning to do this by working with the counselor and teachers once a week to establish a relationship with children and work through programs to build confidence and morale. We are looking forward to spending time with the children and teachers every week and making a difference in the community for our future leaders.

Champion Athletes of the Ozarks


Team Members: Maycie Palmer, Jayde Lowe, Lindsey Lee, Kaley Rottinghaus, Abbie Rademacher, Kayla Day, Molly Wheeler 

Faculty Advisor: Asikaa Cosgrove

Community Contact: Susan Miles

Champion Athletes of the Ozarks is a non-profit organization whose mission is, “to build self-esteem, self-confidence and everyday life skills therefore enhancing the lives of children and adults with disabilities through education, sports competition and new opportunities.” Our goal is to work with our community partner in any way we can, utilizing our groups strengths, to help them carry out their mission. As well as this, we hope to promote an awareness throughout the community our group is a part of, Drury University college campus. We aim to do this through education and inclusion, by facilitating various interaction between the Champion athletes and our peers. We will achieve this by volunteering at events the community partner hosts currently, such as their ‘Monster Bowling Events’. It’s at these events we will build a relationship with the athletes, we will ourselves develop ideas on how to help build self-esteem and self-confidence of the athletes. After establishing a rapport with the athletes and our community partner we plan on hosting two service projects that will allow us to fulfill our goal of bridging the gap between our peers and the Champion Athletes, these will be in the form of a pool party and a fun sports day. These activities will utilize our groups strengths regarding our sports background and also keep in line with our community partners mission.

Greene County Youth Academy

Team Members: Alie Pasternak, Maclen johnson, Jeana Scott

Faculty Advisor: Jennie Long

Community Contact: Jamie Raab

The Greene County Youth Academy is the driving force providing skills and support to its disadvantaged youth who were brought in by the county justice system. This program opens doors to adolescents (12-18) who may not receive the same opportunities at school or home. Our mission is to work alongside the Academy and their students in a peer-to-peer setting in which they can express their goals, both personally and professionally. We aim to raise awareness for this subset of individuals who are rarely in the community spotlight. We provide short workshops on life topics such as communication, self-care, and post-secondary options to aide them on their journey of becoming members of the Springfield community.

Pipkin Middle School

Team Members: Haley Mueller, Gwen Kibbe, Hayley Burgess, Felicia Sheil

Faculty Advisor: Charles Taylor

Community Contact: Jean Haynes

We are four girls who are extremely thrilled to be working with members of Pipkin Middle Schools STEM club! We feel as though that girls at that age need to hear it most that they matter and that they can make a change in their community, personal perspective, and the world around them. We want to set the example for the importance of women empowerment. 

We have chosen to work with Pipkin Middle because a lot of their students could be classified as more impoverished in comparison to many other middle schools in our community. The club meets once a week on Thursdays. They have a teacher representative and a professor from a local University that are excited and on board for our mission.

The big question is how are we going to teach these young girls women empowerment? Not only will we be able to share our own personal experiences and passion but we have many activities in mind. We can share our own stories as well as pull out stories from the media as well as bring in guest speakers. We hope that through this experience they can learn to bond with one another and learn that if they stand together they can be stronger. We hope that our impact will leave ideas in their head that they will carry as they age and yearn to motivate others around them as well. They have a voice and we want to see them use it proudly.