Bring EXCITEMENT to the classroom to ENGAGE students. Excitement is contagious and students retain so much more when they WANT to learn.

Photo of Savannah Grasmick
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Are you employed by T-Mobile or related to an employee of T-Mobile?

  • No

Eligibility: Date of Birth

August 16, 2001

Help us stay in touch!

314-378-4009 14070 Forestvale Drive Missouri: Chesterfield (63017)

Website or social media url(s) (optional):

Instagram: @savannahgrasmick https://www.instagram.com/savannahgrasmick/

Date You Started Your Project Started


Project Stage: Select the description below that best applies to your approach.

  • Idea (hoping to get started in the future)

1. The Problem: What problem are you helping to solve?

I am helping solve the problem of students decreasing interest in education and effort in school. From experience, I retain so much more information when I know what I am learning will better me and expand my mind. Instead- school has turned into an environment that instills upon students to "get it done to get the grade," and that is not engaging at all.

2. Your Solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

My solution comes from my personal experience that my grades show significant improvement and I enjoy the class more when it is evident that that teacher is truly passionate about what they are teaching. Excitement is contagious and excitement makes students WANT to learn. I would like to find a way to recruit passionate individuals and assign them to certain schools to literally teach the subject they are passionate about, or simply be there to boost morale among students. I cannot tell you how many times I have begrudgingly asked the question "but when will I use this in the real world?!" Imagine having someone there to wholeheartedly answer those questions and spark the interest inside of you. We can also train teachers on how to best engage students and teach them skills applauding effort and how to encourage participation even if it means failure first. I would also like to explore other ways we can inspire education and rediscover the BEAUTY of learning. Grades and test scores are already discouraging enough, a little encouragement and excitement can go a long way.

3. Personal Journey: What’s the story behind why you decided to start this project?

I love coding. It is a passion I discovered after attending my first year of Kode With Klossy; a 2 week long summer camp founded by Karlie Kloss to teach girls how to code and bridge the gender gap in the tech world. I took my excitement from camp and went on to teach kids how to code, compete(and win!) hackathons and so much more. I fully immersed myself in computer science and was eager to do just that upon beginning AP Computer Science at my school. To my surprise I had never been more let down. My teacher was beyond discouraging by saying "maybe this just isn't for you." School managed to take something I am so passionate about and suck all the life out of it. I will not let that experience derail me or others from pursuing their passion or even simply finding interest in the little things, such as our ability and privilege to have this education. It is easily forgotten.

4. Selfie Elevator Pitch: Include 1-minute video that answers the following “I am stepping up to make change because...”


5. Example: Please walk us through a specific example of what happens when a person or group gets involved with your project.

As of now I envision recruiting teachers who are outspokenly passionate about what they do and teach and monitoring their students performance, effort, and level of engagement, and compare it to several other teachers and their students. That would be the research stage. Upon what we find there we can evaluate placing specific, encouraging, excited teachers in needed schools and train others, hoping to positively impact the school environment and change students mindsets on school. I would like E N G A G E to be a growing organization that can find easier ways to boost student morale in learning amongst schools without completely altering the grading system. In turn I hope to decrease stress in students. Stress is a major factor that is only getting more and more prevalent among teens and that is affecting their learning! Recruit teachers, boost moral, lower stress, E N G A G E .

6. The X Factor: What is different about your project compared to other programs or solutions already out there?

E N G A G E would be different compared to other education programs meant to inspire students because E N G A G E wouldn't be a camp or club focused on one subject; it would be a research and growth program celebrating ALL learning. It would encompass students and teachers and not only spark an interest, but aim to overall improve students mindsets and grades. We would train teachers to applaud effort and understand mistakes. In Kode With Klossy whenever you would get your code to work, the entire class would snap for you. Not only teachers encouraging, but peers encouraging.

7. Impact: How has your project made a difference so far?

E N G A G E does not exist yet! I would be so thankful to have T-Mobile and Ashoka's help to get it running. Right now I guess I could be considered a "mini E N G A G E." When I am passionate, I am PASSIONATE and that excitement spreads to others and makes them curious about what I am doing. I want that excitement and encouragement everywhere, to spread to all the places I cannot reach on my own.

8. What’s Next: What are your ideas for taking your project to the next level?

I would like to brainstorm more ideas on how we can encourage learning more in school! My idea is still very developing in my opinion but it is an idea I have had ever since last year, I am very open to suggestions.

9. Which of the following types of expertise would be most useful for you?

  • Monitoring Impact

10. Finances: If applicable, have you mobilized any of the following resources so far?

  • Friend support
  • Family support

Help Us Support Diversity! Part 1 [optional] Which of the following categories do you identify with?

  • White (for example: German, Irish, English, Italian, Polish, French) (6)

Help Us Support Diversity! Part 2 [optional] Do you identify as part of any of the following underrepresented communities?

  • No, I do not identify with an underrepresented community

How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Recommended by others

Referral: If you discovered the Challenge thanks to an organization or person other than Ashoka or T-Mobile, who was it?

Aarushi Mac. She is my friend and won this contest last year!


Join the conversation:

Photo of Elijah Beach

Hi Savannah,
I totally agree that the lack of student engagement is critical to students wanting to learn. But honestly, we (students) don't get to choose our teachers and I don't see how you can be a Changemaker within a system you have no input or control.

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