Since 1993, I have been participating in and assisting with the programs at Landmark Education, at their Chicago center. (This is a photo of the center that I took from the top of the Hancock building. As always, click to expand.)
Everyone in a SELP creates a project that expresses who they are, and then seeks to enroll the people in a community into that project. Here are a few of mine.
My first project, when I was a participant in 1993, was to computerize Landmark Education itself. Back then, we were managing the courses with pencil and paper. The CEO, Harry Rosenberg, told me it was going to be a struggle to get Landmark out of the '50s...and into the '80s. He was right.
But we put together a team of tech-savy people, got our hands on some used computers, and set to work. I created a Filemaker Pro database that was used to run the center until October 1996, when Landmark bought computers and switched to the new Centers Information System. This was the project that made me a Filemaker programmer.
More recently, I worked on the effort to convert an abandoned railroad embankment in Logan Square into the Bloomingdale Trail. Someday, perhaps in 2012, it will be the elevated superhighway of urban bike paths. The best parts of that project were going on the trail walks, and finally meeting my alderman, Rey Colon.
My latest project, last fall, was to fight global warming by giving away compact fluorescent lightbulbs, and asking people to do the same. It evolved into a group called The Power of 10, which took on a life of its own, with a broader agenda, and even it's own Yahoo Group. Please feel free to join.
As a SELP coach, I’ve also had the privilege to work with other people, and support them in their projects.
Here are a few of them.
Pam Hutter is an architect, and in May 2000 was managing the renovation of Richards Career Academy High School in Chicago. In partnership with the principal, she invited the students and teachers to create a vision for what their
school would look like in 2010, and express that in art, writing and other ways. These works were placed in a time capsule inside the walls of the newly-rebuilt school, to be opened on the tenth anniversary. I plan to be there.
Susan Beach works in the Oak Park Schools, and sponsored a fund raising concert for a non-profit group called PING (Providing Instruments for the Next Generation.) As you can see from the newspaper story, it was a smashing sucess.
Beverly Preuss wanted to celebrate the diversity in her home town of Palatine, IL. Here's her booth at the summer arts festival. I wish I had the photo of what she looked like after the Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago was done using her for the turban-wrapping demonstration. Bev, can you send that to me?
Finally, I have a friend who is a SELP leader. He would like me to mention www.landmarkeducationnews.info, which has a fabulous collection of stories from the world-wide community of the Self-Expression and Leadership Program.