NLCP Alumni Credits Senior Project For Her Preparedness & Success

Alisa Hill is the first person in her family to attend college. A graduate of North Lawndale College Prep, Alisa feels that she is creating a legacy for her family and paving the way for her niece and cousins. She also says that returning to mentor a student for the NLCPHS Senior Project is “an honor and a responsibility.” Alisa won Colloquium, the top honor in Senior Project, in her graduating year with a topic about the war on drugs and its effect on low-income communities.

After graduating from NLCPHS, Alisa attended Eastern Illinois University, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Nonprofit Leadership. She is now a Master’s Candidate for Public Administration with a concentration in Strategic Management at Northern Illinois University, set to graduate in 2020.

Alisa has continued to shine a light on issues impacting the North Lawndale Community. During college she expanded her research to include presentations and papers on topics such as: Disinvestment in Low Income Communities, Gentrification in Chicago, African-American Students Trust in Government, and How The Black Lives Matter Movement Influenced Legislation in Illinois. She has presented these projects at multiple conferences in the Political Science and Africana Departments at Eastern Illinois University, and her work helped garner her a spot as a graduate assistant at Northern.

Alisa credits NLCPHS as the support system that brought her through college in four years. In particular, she credits the Senior Project with properly preparing her for the expectations of college level curriculum. “I knew how to produce a well-researched paper, how to organize a project and plan for it successfully. A lot of other first year students didn’t.”

She describes her time as an NLCPHS student as “transformational” and credits the staff as playing a big role in her development. Alisa says, “They know potential, they see potential and they push students to their best.” She adds, “Teachers and administrators were very accessible. You could reach out to teachers, and they would stay to help you.”

Alisa also benefited from an environment that encouraged her to stretch. “We worked on public speaking skills but with authentic engagement. As students we were asked to express ourselves; the teachers didn’t speak for us. We were taught to learn from trial and error, and students encouraged one another.”

By North Lawndale College Prep High School Staff