APPS Program Reinstates Senior Capstone Project



The APPS program is a signature program at CHS dedicated to promoting academic success.

Kara Peeler, Editor-In-Chief

The APPS program is requiring all APPS juniors, sophomores and freshmen to create a Senior Capstone project to present at a future showcase. 

The APPS program, aka Advanced Placement Power Scholars, is aiming to create a comprehensive path for students. The program requires students to take 6 AP classes and their exams, maintain a 3.5 unweighted GPA, participate in two APPS activities per semester, and complete the Senior project. 

By the time students leave this program they will hopefully have honed their skills and knowledge on something they are truly passionate about,” said APPS coordinator and social studies teacher Rachel Clements. 

There was a meeting held by school staff Oct. 28 to discuss the expectations for the project. Juniors are expected to complete a proposal and find an official mentor by the end of first semester. They then have one year to complete the project and will present at one of three Showcase Events during their senior year in the form of a trifold board accompanied by a speech. Students must log their hours of work on the project, which must total to 20-30 hours. The presentation can be either research or experience-based. 

The Senior Project aims to set APPS students apart, encouraging students’ passions, extending their learning beyond the classroom, and recognizing student achievements. 

Anyone can take an AP class and exam,” said Clements. “Not everyone can spend their time to research or design or create something they have spent their high school career working towards.” 

Unfortunately, many APPS students were displeased after the meeting. Some students felt they were not informed that the Capstone project was mandatory at the time that they applied. 

“I think it is unnecessary and blind-siding, especially [for] the eleventh graders who applied two years ago when the Capstone Project was not mandatory,” said junior Vagmi Luhar. 

However, within the 2019-2020 APPS application, the AP Showcase Presentation was listed under the Student Application Statement with the other program requirements. Applicants were required to acknowledge these requirements.

When the class of 2021 joined the APPS program it was part of their agreement that they would create a capstone project in their senior year,” said Clements. “We are simply implementing something that was already part of their plan.” 

Some other students are upset about the disparities amongst the grade levels. The class of 2020 is exempted, while the class of 2021 has time concerns because they have not been planning on having to complete the large project in the middle of their standardized testing season (Spring 2020) and college application process (Fall 2020). 

“We shouldn’t have to do it,” said junior Mahima Ranpurae. “It’s too late; we only have one year while the freshmen will be aware of it for all four years.” 

However, Clements and school staff have reassured students that the timeline is fair. 

I know this sounds daunting but the school community is here to help you and you have over a year in order to plan and execute your project!” said Clements. 

Since the Capstone Senior Project requirement is being implemented, students must showcase their work during the last semester of their senior year for years to come. Additionally, the 2019-2020 application for incoming APPS students clearly lists it as a requirement in order to clearly communicate the project as a requirement. 

I am excited to see the amazing things our students have come up with,” said Clements.