Pine Bluff High students part of new Clinton School program

Pine Bluff High School students are included in 38 from across the state participating in Noble Impact, a new education initiative to establish public service and entrepreneurship as core curriculum in every school.

The University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service and University of Arkansas Sam M. Walton College of Business are partnering for the program.

Noble Impact launched the INSTITUTE this week as a program with 38 students from seven Arkansas high schools, teaching them ways that public service and entrepreneurship can address community issues. During the two-week program at the Clinton School of Public Service, students are meeting with leaders of businesses and organizations to explore solutions to problems that have been identified in the community. The students will work in teams to develop a possible solution and then pitch that solution to a panel of judges made up of community leaders, entrepreneurs and investors.

Steve Clark, Arkansas entrepreneur and founder of Noble Impact, said reaching students when they are young is important to instill a sense of public service and to give them the tools they need to make real change.

“To solve a problem is to exit the problem,” Clark said. “I believe we can teach, at an early age, that public service is noble and worthy of our best effort. I believe we can teach, at an early age, the skills needed to identify, quantify, execute and solve our society’s most pressing social issues. I believe these pursuits to be noble.”

The students are from seven Arkansas high schools: Hall High School, eStem Public Charter School, Little Rock Central High School, Lisa Academy, Pine Bluff High School, Bryant High School and North Pulaski High School. They were nominated by teachers and received recommendations from community professionals. Noble Impact is funding all costs associated with the program and the facilitators are Clinton School of Public Service graduates.

A launch event is scheduled for noon Tuesday in Sturgis Hall at the Clinton School of Public Service in Little Rock.