Front Row – L-R: Collette House, Larry Taylor (ACSI President), Linda Harrelson and Milton Gonzalez
Back Row – L-R: Jay Ferguson (Chairman), Solano Portela, Elisa Carlson, Todd Marrah, Carl Martinez and Nate Johnson
Not Pictured: Tia Gaines, Kevin Kyser and Alan Miller
Elisa Carlson, Chair-Elect
Carl Martinez, Secretary
Alan L. Miller
ACSI Launches New, Strategic Student Leadership and Learning Opportunities
Colorado Springs, CO– The Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) is reaching new heights in its Student Leadership and Learning opportunities. By expanding event options and realigning existing ones, the organization is ensuring each equips students around the world with valuable skills such as creative thinking, problem solving, leadership, and service. Each opportunity is crafted with the goal of allowing students to explore and develop their God-given gifts and talents.
Emily Pigott, ACSI’s new Director of Student Leadership and Learning, believes it’s imperative to raise up strong student leaders who are both skilled and motivated to positively impact their communities for Jesus. By providing access to immersive events and experiences, students discover their strengths and learn how to use them to bring about cultural change in the world.
“It’s not just discovering how to be a leader,” Pigott shared. “It’s discovering how to use the gifts and talents God has given you to impact this world.”
ACSI President & CEO Dr. Larry Taylor looks forward to Pigott’s leadership in implementing strategic departmental changes.
“I’m extremely excited to welcome Emily Pigott as our new Student Leadership and Learning Director,” he shared. “We will be moving forward with a strong emphasis on student service and Christ-honoring leadership. I’m looking forward to seeing the fruit that I’m sure will come from these advancements.”
The Student Leadership and Learning Department plans to add new events to its selection, including a Worship Band Festival, Student Leadership Summits, and a Venture: Startup Innovation Challenge.
“This generation is so creative,” Pigott remarked. “We want to give them the tools and opportunities they need to channel that creativity and refine their God-given skills. The Venture Startup Innovation Challenge is one way for students to create something from nothing, explain what it is, think through the business model, how to present it, how to market, how to strategize, and see it come to fruition.”
About 700 schools representing 40,000 students currently participate in ACSI Student Leadership and Learning events.
Events include Performing and Fine Arts Festivals, STEM experiences, Speech & Debate competitions, Student Leadership & Apologetics conferences, High School Leadership Conference/Summits, and more.
“Our ultimate goal is for students to develop impactful leadership skills as they utilize their gifts and talents to change the landscape of this world for Jesus,” Pigott said. “We believe in 5 years, after we have structured all of our events to have a strong emphasis on student leadership development, we will be seeing the true, positive impacts on our culture.”
Foothills Christian High School, a prior participant at an ACSI High School Leadership Conference, shared how meaningful the time spent together was for their students.
“This conference has been life-changing for our students,” school leadership shared. “They returned to school ready to share the meanings and purposes they discovered at the conference and more willing to take those hard leadership roles. Many students had breakthroughs in their personal walks thanks to the engaging, inspiring speakers.”
The 8-person Student Leadership and Learning team continues to serve ACSI member schools across the U.S. and internationally. More information about student events can be found on the website.
Headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, ACSI exists to strengthen Christian schools and equip Christian educators worldwide as they prepare students academically and inspire them to become devoted followers of Jesus Christ. ACSI advances excellence in Christian schools by enhancing the professional and personal development of Christian educators and providing vital support functions for Christian schools through multiple services including teacher and administrator certification, school accreditation, legal/legislative assistance, and curriculum publishing. Serving more than 25,000 schools in 108 countries, ACSI helps more than 5.5 million students worldwide connect to Christian education.