Students display capstone EPIC projects


Senior Maya Seicol drew a comic for her Experiential, Project-based, Innovative Capstone [EPIC] course capstone project. Seicol’s goal is to break down stigmas regarding mental health through her comics. Lauren Mahoney/Sagamore Staff

Lauren Mahoney, Sports Writing Editor

As the temperature climbs and seniors make plans for graduation, a new reality hits many seniors: senioritis. After four year in the same building, classes can feel monotonous and seniors tend to lose motivation to stay engaged.

The Experiential, Project-based, Innovative Capstone course aims to curb this disinterest by offering a half-year course which replaces the second semester of any senior English class and offers students an opportunity to pursue their own passions. On May 24, students in the EPIC program presented their capstone projects to the community during the EPIC Exhibition.

Senior Dacey Jackson coded a phone application as the basis of a student dog walking company. Jackson attempted to start a student-run dog walking company as part of a project early in the year for EPIC, but she said she ran into many challenges including holding dog walkers accountable.

According to Jackson, the goal of the app is to help solve the problems of accountability that arose when she initially attempted to create her own dog walking company. The app tracks when the dog walker enters the house and their location throughout their time with the dog, so that owners can be assured their dogs are being walked.  

“The biggest challenge was sticking with it when you don’t necessary have a teacher telling you what to do,” Jackson said. “You are completely in charge of what you’re doing and when you’re doing it.”

Senior Maya Seicol, who wrote graphic novels to debunk the stigmas surrounding mental health, said that EPIC allows students to do self-fulfilling work, unlike many traditional classes.

“It seemed like a class that allowed students to do something for themselves rather than do something that a teacher wanted them to do, so there was a lot of independence,” Seicol said.

Senior Andrea Maytorena García De Alba designed a stop motion film as her capstone project. Alba said she spent up to five hours per night taking pictures for her film “Breathe.

According to Alba, although the limited structure in the class may make it seem like less work, because students are driven by their own interests, they end up putting in more work than they would in a typical class.

“Honestly, the first thing said was that you don’t have to write a senior paper, and I was like, ‘I’m taking this class,’” Alba said. “But really, it is so much more than that, because you choose what you want to learn, how fast you go, how much work you take home, and you find your own passion.”