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High School Scholars Share STEAM Projects in Curate the Culture Showcase 2024

Above: HCZ High School scholars perform during their annual showcase, "Curate the Culture."

Fallou Diongue opened his laptop and scrolled through lines of text that appeared to be random characters strung together. But there was intention — and a lot of hard work! — that went into creating the text. In fact, Fallou had “written” it — coding for a sophisticated computer program that generates passwords.

“This project was hard, but working with Dominique made it fun,” said Fallou Diongue, referring to his coding teacher, Dominique Young of the Coder School. “I learned a lot and really challenged myself to create something I never thought I could.”

Fallou, a scholar at our Employment Technology Center (ETC), was among the hundreds of HCZ high school scholars who showcased their talents at their annual STEAM showcase, Curate the Culture.

Hosted at our Geoffrey Canada Community Center, Curate the Culture featured projects by scholars from HCZ Promise Academy High School and our Zone After School High School STEAM Programs: ETC, Academy of Arts & Civic Engagement (ACE), and Countee Cullen Community Center (CCCC). These programs empower our high school scholars with the professional skills and real-world experience to launch careers in arts, technology, media, and more.

Keep scrolling to discover more about Curate the Culture!

Scholars Showcase Creativity

At Curate the Culture, our scholars showcase so much more than their projects: they showcase their hard work, creativity, and knowledge of the professional fields they are pursuing in our programs.

With the guidance of program specialists, many of whom are working professionals, scholars created and presented a range of projects: fashion collections, interior designs, homemade desserts, paintings and drawings, and even a music production studio.

“Our scholars are incredibly talented, and I’m so proud to see their hard work throughout the year come to life,” Judy Palacios, Director of K-12 HCZ After School Programs, said. “It is a testament to how exceptional our scholars are in everything they do, whether it’s in the arts or sciences.”

Curate the Culture featured an exhibition of STEAM projects and an energetic fashion show, concert, and dance performances with original choreography. Scholars took to the runway in fashion collections they designed — ensembles complete with detailed stitching, unique fabrics, and bold, bright colors.

Inspired by the academic approach at many colleges, our Zone After School High School Programs unlock a learning experience based on a scholar’s “major,” or focus area. Scholars enjoy an immersive experience — learning from industry professionals, pursuing real-world projects, and enjoying internship and networking opportunities. At HCZ Promise Academy, our top-performing charter schools, scholars work toward college enrollment while engaging in extracurricular activities that hone their passions. These experiences pave the path to college — and their future careers.