New York Times bestselling author and award-winning young adult writer Elizabeth Acevedo will be kicking-off Norfolk Collegiate’s inaugural Learning to Elevate Action Program (LEAP) Term with an inspiring keynote for students in Grades 9-12 on Monday, Feb. 24, from 8:30-9:15 a.m. in Norfolk Collegiate’s Hackney Theater in the Meredith Center for the Arts.

Acevedo also will host two workshops, "Writing with Elizabeth Acevedo," where she will lead writing workshops with students based on her experience as an award-winning published author. 

Acevedo is best known for her critically acclaimed work, “The Poet X” and “With the Fire on High.” Her debut novel “The Poet X,” won the 2018 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature. She is the recipient of the Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Fiction, the CILIP Carnegie Medal, the Boston Globe-Hornbook Award and the 2019 Pure Belpré Author Award. 

“LEAP is an experience-based learning program that allows students to connect their growing interests to the real-world by reflecting on who they are and who they are becoming,” said Ashley King, director of experiential education & community engagement and coordinator for technology integration. “Students do this by exploring a curiosity, passion or skill through a project they develop and pursue for the better part of a year through advisory, school meeting and LEAP Term.”

LEAP Term is a week of learning beyond the classroom Monday, Feb. 24 through Friday, Feb. 28. For seniors, it includes travel abroad and stateside, internships, mentorship and other off-campus learning opportunities. For juniors, sophomores and freshmen, the week includes service learning in the community, immersive workshops, project storytelling and time for creativity and exploration. 


What students and faculty are saying

“I really enjoyed reading a book that can relate to high school students and me as an adult. I was really able to visualize the story and put myself in Emoni's shoes.”

Cayte Brown '08 | Alumni and Community Relations Manager


“I enjoyed reading 'With the Fire on High.' I liked the message about how dedication, diligence and the willingness to do the less fun tasks in a craft are important to learning. That theme resonates with me because it's hard for me to motivate myself to improve my skills as an artist through studies or follow structured projects with limits and rules in an art class. Reading 'With the Fire on High' encouraged me to put in time and effort into learning, and I plan to take an art class in the future.”

Tori Chapel | Class of 2022