See Our Pursuits

Our students explore their college and career interests throughout their Sterne Upper School experience as part of our post-secondary planning.  In their senior year, students are prepared to take on a "Passage"--an internship, volunteership, passion project, job, or college course that is focused on their career interests. 

Check out what our students have pursued as passage projects.

Project Focus: Event Planning
Internship: Glow Events, San Francisco
After taking a lead role in organizing Prom her junior year as part of her involvement with the Associated Student Body (ASB) at Sterne, Cole discovered a passion for event management. Following a very successful Prom (in part due to Cole’s savvy organizational and leadership skills), Cole then applied for and accepted an internship at Glow Events where she was exposed to all aspects of event management including client meetings, paperwork, vendor negotiations, contracts, crisis management, and on-site event management. 
At the end of Cole’s internship with Glow Events, she was offered a position to work for the company through the summer months before attending college. Cole is now at Lynn University (Florida) working on her Bachelor’s of Science in Event Management. She was on the Honor Roll in 2019.

Project Focus: JROTC
Hammel was interested in exploring career options in the military and wanted a more hands-on approach to learning about the field. Hammel discovered and then enrolled in the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) program which provided him the experiential learning he was seeking. During his time in the JROTC, Hammel attended JROTC classes, service activities, parades, and rose through the ranks to become a Captain. Taking on this project was a defining point for Hammel in both his academic and personal life.  His parents both agreed that, while no one saw him becoming interested in and invested in the military, it was incredible to witness his responsibility and dedication, building a solid foundation for his first steps into adulthood. Hammel is now a member of the ROTC program in college, which, in addition to experiential learning, training, and education, the program also provides financial assistance to help offset the cost of college. 

Project Focus: Youth Group Leadership
Mika was the Regional Director of the Buddhist Church's Youth Organizations. In that role, she organized and planned meetings and events, including a pancake breakfast for the San Francisco chapter of Buddhist Churches. Mike was also responsible for organizing the California Youth Meeting, which gave Mika both experience in project-management and an opportunity to work with children. Mika didn’t always think of herself as an organized student, but through this project, she was able to take the executive skills she was learning at school and apply them to real life. 

Project Focus: Education
Volunteership: Everett Middle School
Since he was very young, Edwin had been involved in the San Francisco Boys Choir and was a talented Cello player. Being both musically talented and athletically inclined, (he played Team Handball and Basketball at Sterne High School), Edwin decided to explore the possibility of becoming a teacher.  Edwin approached Everett Middle School (his former school prior to joining Sterne) and earned a job as a Teaching Assistant in 5th-8th grade Physical Education and Music classes. Exposing Edwin to a range of ages gave Edwin a real feel for what teaching might look like: His assessment, “Teachers have to have a lot of patience.” 

Project Focus: Floristry
Volunteership: San Francisco Botanic Garden
Emily expressed an interest in floristry in her 10th grade year after identifying some of her interests--the outdoors/nature, tranquil environments, and ‘stopping to smell the flowers’.  Emily's Passage experience was unique because, over the course of her volunteership with the SF Botanical Gardens and her community college course in floristry, she discovered her interest in flowers was wilting. At the completion of her volunteer program and class, Emily checked floristry off her list: Sometimes knowing what you don’t want is equally as valuable as knowing what you do want!
At present, Emily is attending Mitchell College and is pursuing a BA in Hospitality and Tourism. She still enjoys getting outside and smelling the flowers!

Project Focus: Gaming - Dungeons & Dragons
Xye has always loved gaming and has been a regular Dungeons & Dragon (D&D) player at a local game store for years. Leveraging this passion, Xye built a D&D Campaign for his passages project.  His D&D Campaign included a setting, a world, characters, plot hooks, story lines, demographics/population creation, maps, and more. He incorporated ideas from various works of fiction and stories of interest. Xye was responsible for the entire creation process which involved design work, character development, and conceptualization. His favorite part of the process was building the world itself and creating dungeons. His biggest challenge was testing the game and figuring out how to scale things properly. The creation of his D&D Campaign took 6 months to complete. You can find Xye playing or DM’ing (Dungeon Master) Dungeons & Dragons at his favorite game store.

Project Focus: Personal Passion - Model Trains
For as long as he can remember, Adam has had a passion for trains. It was an easy decision for him to leverage this passion for his passages project. Adam focused his efforts on learning how to design and run extensive model trails. He traveled to Seattle to attend a model train Expo and interviewed several model train enthusiasts across the Bay Area and Pacific Northwest.  Adam is currently enrolled at St. Mary’s College of California. He’s still an avid model train enthusiast, but finds himself more involved in the Gael pep band.  Go Gaels!

Examples of Other Passage Projects:
San Francisco Parks and Recreation
Alain Pinel Real Estate
San Francisco Friends School
VAD Foundation
Italian American Social Club North Beach
Aveda Institute