The demands and distractions many children face in today’s world do not leave much room for a “journey of self-discovery.” That’s where SVP’s time-only Investee Effective Leadership Academy (ELA) comes in; its programs serve as a veritable life-skill travel agency aiding students in their voyage of personal growth.
According to research conducted by Harvard University, the Carnegie Foundation, and Stanford Research Center, 85% of job success comes from having well-developed soft skills and people skills, and only 15% comes from technical skills and knowledge. Yet studies show young people are sadly lacking in these higher priority skills. This research indicates students must be taught 21st-century skills if they are to thrive in today’s world.
With this body of evidence in mind, ELA’s executive director, Flo Brett, founded the organization in 2008, and it has served over 20,000 students since. ELA provides socio-emotional learning opportunities—such as growth mindsets, self-efficacy, self-management, and social awareness—as well as soft-skill training to a diverse body of students. These students are drawn from a range of socio-economic spheres and have differing learning styles and experiences. ELA’s aim is to make its program affordable for and inclusive of all students. Its curriculum and program model truly change students’ lives because they help youth to understand who they are, set goals for who they want to become, and cultivate the toolkit that will help them on their self-led journey.
In 2018, SVP collaborated with ELA in a dynamic, time-only engagement helmed by SVP Lead Partner Jeff Allen. In May 2019, SVP Partners showed their enthusiasm for ELA and that successful collaboration by voting to engage with the nonprofit for a second year on another capacity-building project.