ATLANTA—Religious Studies student LaValla Wilson had a dream to guide youth faced with homelessness through their academic experiences. Now thanks to the Student Innovation Fellowship Program, she’s one step closer to fulfilling that dream through the development of a homeless youth app: the Homeless Youth Resource Site.
“I want to empower youth experiencing homelessness by providing a simple and concise app with instructions, information and support that will enable them to plot a path to their dreams,” she said.
The Homeless Youth Resource Site will connect users to links that provide email addresses and cloud storage to securely store important documentation required for enrollment in high school and post-secondary education. The app will also centralize homeless youth resources, programs, agencies and policies to help facilitate and ease their completion of high school as well as their admission to and graduation from a post-secondary institution.
“Georgia’s McKinney-Vento Program 2016 Data Report shows that Georgia has a growing student homelessness problem, with the number of identified homeless students in Georgia increasing every year,” Wilson said. “If we can increase the number of homeless high schoolers that go to college or vocational training, we might be able to reverse this trend.”
She added, “I want to prepare this population of students with skills and resources to matriculate and complete their academic program without the interruption of homelessness.”
Wilson is working with six other fellows to design the app. The group hopes to test the app with homeless youth soon.
About the Student Innovation Fellowship Program
The Student Innovation Fellowship Program at Georgia State is a collaborative effort among the Center for Instructional Innovation, CURVE, the Center for Instructional Effectiveness and Georgia State faculty. Students selected for the program develop ideas around emerging technologies and instructional innovations.