Milton High School is the first public school to partner with the GivingPoint.

Through the partnership students have a new outlet to help “turn their passions and ideas into real-world entrepreneurial opportunities.”

GivingPoint created the Social Innovators Academy.

“The Social Innovators Academy was developed when we realized that students had more than just a passion for service. They have brilliant and innovative ideas of their own,” said GivingPoint Director of Programs James Aucoin.

Milton TAG Coordinator Renee Denney initially learned about the Social Innovators Academy through a student and invited GivingPoint to partner with her classes.

“The response has been enthusiastic from both the community and the students,” said Denney.

The partnership kicked off with 25 talented and gifted, or TAG, students participating in weekly “Lunch and Learns.”

“Milton High is pleased to provide new programs to enrich students’ learning and opportunities beyond the classroom,” said Denney.

During these sessions, students had the opportunity to learn how to build a company, form a nonprofit and raise funds

Academy members also have the opportunities to learn about “social entrepreneurship, networking, marketing and research.”

Local chamber of commerce members and business owners volunteered to give presentations, ensuring that students experience real-world examples of entrepreneurship.

Each session teaches students about a “new aspect of innovation” and reaffirms the previous week’s lesson.

“We want them to gain a sense of their own power and potential, and learn the skills they need to lead social innovation,” said GivingPoint Director of Programs James Aucoin.

“Students will participate in “Shark Tank” style presentations, with a chance to win scholarships and bring their nonprofit dreams to life,” said a news release.

According to Aucoin, GivingPoint’s vision is “to inspire this generation to be a generation of givers.”

“GivingPoint has been inspiring teens to give back to their communities and to make a difference in the world since 2009,” said Aucoin.

Milton Sophomore Sloan Salinas is drawing on personal experience for her project.

Sloan attended summer camp with five students from Parkland, Florida and is researching how to provide service animals for teens and children with post-traumatic stress.

“I’m addressing the problem of PTSD in children and young adults, which doesn’t always get a lot of attention,” said Sloan.

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