Did you know that only 5 percent of the population actually achieve the goals they set out to accomplish? There are so many obstacles and delays, which deters most of us from trucking right along towards that goal. Most do not understand that those obstacles are part of the journey, no matter what we do or experience, but what if we started our journey actually knowing that there were going to be setbacks, and were emotionally equipped to handle the setbacks? This would allow one to achieve goals and become stronger and more compassionate people in the process. That’s why Elite Academic Academy has partnered with Ambassadors of Compassion (AOC), which is an innovative leadership program that equips youth with the critical skills necessary to navigate and succeed through life’s inevitable challenges. Starting this 2021 spring semester at Elite, AOC has launched its first two A-G accredited Social Emotional Learning (SEL) courses.

So what is AOC all about? Founder and President, Eric Hannah, went through struggles in his own life, which is why he noticed a gap in his education where SEL courses would have benefitted. AOC was born and immediately started making an impact on the youth in Southern California. Their goal is to impact millions of students per year through this curriculum and reset the idea that people can be compassionate with each other. They have put over 60,000 students through their extra-curricular program in the last 6 years! Hannah is very passionate about helping students with social emotional learning, so you could say he is part of the 5% that achieved his goal!

“The choices students make today have a profound and immediate effect on their future. We give students the tools to navigate through these inevitable challenges. They now have a safe place where they can have open and honest discussions about things that are affecting them”. 

Hannah chose Elite as the center of AOC’s academic avenue, which means this will be the first time AOC is accredited with the added academic component. Through collaboration with Elite’s CTE Director, Ashlea Kirkland, M. Ed., and Dr. Laura Spencer, Director of Academic Innovation, these two classes were adopted into Elite Academic Academy’s Course Catalog and are now available to Elite students through Canvas Learning Management System. Students are supported through the AOC SEL Learning experience by highly qualified credentialed teachers and attend synchronous sessions with the support of Elite’s credentialed School Counselor. So far, students have loved the AOC SEL courses this semester. Mrs. Kirkland is very happy with the outcome as well.

“The AOC course experience is unlike any other course! Students are highly engaged and have the ability to self-reflect on aspects of their lives in order to gain the confidence to move forward in a positive direction. Compassion is something that is hard to teach, but when the students have the opportunity to stop and look within themselves, they become better humans because of it. The academic component with the AOC courses allows for students to meet the rigorous academic standard through writing and storytelling. Student’s also complete a community service project, so they learn first hand how important it is to give back to one’s community.” 

Here is a review of the two courses and what they entail.

LIFE Course: Labor, Influence, Forgiveness, Experiences

Understanding the role that labor plays in our lives, recognizing the needs of others and the needs within our community, and taking action to help. Recognizing that we are influenced both positively and negatively by the culture and people around us, and acknowledging that we ourselves influence others. Discovering that forgiveness is a process, and understanding and experiencing the freedom and power that comes from forgiving others, forgiving ourselves, and also asking for forgiveness when we offend others. Exploring the importance of building on our life experiences and those of others, and facing and letting go of any negative experiences in order to help us reach our goals and dreams and full potential in life.

RISE: Responsibility, Initiative, Service, Expectations

Exploring the characteristics of a responsible person and the need to take ownership of one’s thoughts and actions to help accomplish one’s goals and dreams in life. Understanding that initiative is an action step based on one’s decisions that results in a multitude of lasting benefits, including strong and healthy relationships and reaching one’s greatness in life. Discovering the importance of serving others and also serving the needs in the community. Examining the power of expectations in one’s relationships and in one’s goals and dreams, and distinguishing and evaluating the difference between realistic and unrealistic expectations and knowing how to manage them.

school graph

Our Elite Students taking the LIFE course this semester are already putting what they learned from the curriculum into action.

“Doing small things that make you happy is so important. I like to stand outside in the sun because it makes me happy” – Solomon, Elite Student. 

“A quote that is important to me is ‘You either stay weak and on the floor or rise up like never before’ “- Eliab, Elite Student. 

In addition to being equipped with the skills to take on life’s challenges, students will earn a certificate showing they completed an SEL course, on top of the 5 A-G elective credits they receive towards their high school diploma. It is becoming increasingly important for kids to have this certificate, as companies that hire young employees are looking at SEL along with Academics. Emotional preparation for life is just as important as the academic preparation, and businesses are taking notice of this!

Ambassadors of Compassion envisions millions of youth who are productive, self-sufficient, and compassionate citizens taking responsibility for their own lives while serving the needs of their community and world. Through our two new SEL courses, we know that our Elite students will be prime role models for AOC’s vision!

Click here to get the full overview of AOC and read testimonies from students, parents, and celebrities that have been positively impacted by AOC.