Guided by the mission and common elements of The Powell Institute for Responsible Citizenship, the Capstone Program brings to life students’ classroom learning in a real-world context. Occurring in the final year of each division, Capstones create space, opportunity and challenge for our students to help prepare them for their futures. Each Capstone has a developmentally appropriate focus. 4th Graders participate in Envision Collegiate, 8th Graders participate in Envision Richmond and 12th Graders participate in Envision Your World.                          

12th Grade: Envision Your World

CHALLENGE | Students engage in authentic opportunities to connect with and contribute to the world at large in a Senior Capstone class, a one-semester graduation requirement. The Senior Capstone experiences foster compassionate leadership and a growth mindset.
COMMUNITY | All Senior Capstones emphasize collaboration through partnerships beyond the Collegiate community, several of which connect with partner schools around the globe. Students can choose from a variety of Capstone experiences, each with a curricular focus on one or more of the pillars of Responsible Citizenship: Global Engagement, Inclusion, Economic Literacy, Entrepreneurship, Service Learning, Civic Engagement, Ethics and Service Learning.
DESIGN THINKING JOURNEY | Each Capstone has at its core an essential question or challenge that empowers 12th Graders to use their cumulative learning to engage with the challenge. Examples of past Capstone essential questions include:

Createathon On Campus | 
How can creativity and strategic thinking help Richmond area nonprofits succeed?
International Emerging Leaders: Global Conference | How can a truly global collaboration challenge me to grow as a leader?  
Sustainable Solutions to the Future of Food | How can we ensure that people have access to safe, healthy, affordable food in a way that can be both environmentally and economically sustainable?
PUBLIC SHARING | Team solutions are shared with audiences of individuals whose daily lives are part of, or impacted by, the Capstone essential question.

CONTINUING THE JOURNEY | Student teams continue to work throughout the school year for their organization that targets an immediate need.

8th Grade: Envision Richmond

CHALLENGE | Students connect with organizations and leaders leveraging design thinking to identify and address challenges in the Richmond region. Envision Richmond fosters collaboration, empathy, creativity, communication and problem-solving techniques so students feel better equipped to improve the city around them.
COMMUNITY | The Capstone experience immerses the entire 8th Grade student body in the local community with an intensive leadership and civic engagement curriculum.
DESIGN THINKING JOURNEY | For one week in the fall, students leave the traditional classroom to visit Richmond sites, wrestle with a variety of issues and work in teams to develop a viable solution to the problems they identify. Examples of past topics explored during Envision Richmond include food insecurity, foster care, first responders and the military.
PUBLIC SHARING | Team solutions are presented to community leaders whose daily lives are part of, or impacted by, the challenge identified and addressed by the students.

CONTINUING THE JOURNEY |  Student teams continue to work throughout the school year, and in the spring design an outreach project for their organization that targets an immediate need.

4th Grade: Envision Collegiate

CHALLENGE | Our 4th Grade students collaborate to identify and design a solution to meet a need within the Collegiate community. Recently students have focused on the essential question: “How might we improve the sustainability of Collegiate’s campus?” 
COMMUNITY | The Capstone experience allows the 4th Grade students to connect with people and programs across the Collegiate campus to foster a deeper understanding of the Collegiate community and to identify opportunities for growth and change. The students also travel off campus to local organizations and businesses for additional learning and inspiration. 
DESIGN THINKING JOURNEY | On their journey to envisioning a stronger Collegiate, 4th Graders use a design thinking process to answer the identified essential question. This process empowers them to develop and hone skills including creative thinking, problem-solving, collaboration, empathy building, questioning, interviewing, leadership development and public speaking. 
PUBLIC PRESENTATION | The Capstone culminates with group presentations in which students bring together the skills they have learned and present their innovative ideas to a panel of Collegiate leaders. 

"We believe wholeheartedly that young people yearn to engage meaningfully with their communities as responsible citizens - listening deeply, observing openly, and questioning what might be; we dedicate ourselves to making space for that critical work by intentionally crafting curricular opportunities to expand their circles. Our JK-12 Capstone program empowers students to envision the future of Collegiate, the future of Richmond and, ultimately, our world - building upon the knowledge, skills and dispositions students develop over the course of their journeys through each division."
Rhiannon Boyd
Director, JK-12 Capstones
In addition to distinct developmentally appropriate components, each divisional Capstone shares some common elements:
  • Responsible Citizenship Curriculum Focus
  • Collaborative Learning
  • Leadership Development
  • Design Thinking Skill Building
  • Experiential Learning
  • Public Sharing/Presentations