The project was purely speculative, but having THINC College and Career Academy students present ideas for community development to the LaGrange City Council opened up new ideas for making the area more attractive to young adults for living and working.
The academy favors a hands-on approach to learning and encourages direct connections of that learning to the real world. This project is a first for the academy. Students spent the whole semester creating and reviewing responses to surveys, and planning based on the results of those surveys. The given topic for research was “How can LaGrange convince young adults to live here?”
Students developed the plans in competition with each other, and then worked together to recommend the creation of a lakeside community with shopping, homes and indoor and outdoor activities.
“They had taken on the assignment of what could make LaGrange more appealing to young adults –the focus was 18 to 35 – and so they had a competition internally, and I understand that they had a winner of the competition,” said Mayor Jim Thornton. “But then they also came back and worked collaboratively to adjust beyond even that, and it is a really impressive group of students.”