Senior Capstone Projects

Our Program
St. Catherine’s High School offers an authentic Montessori experience for sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Our aim is to educate the whole person transitioning into adulthood by providing a combination of rigorous academic study, moral education, and spiritual inquiry. Students in our program have the unique opportunity to pursue their individual interests, including courses at partnering institutions, internships, and independent study. These individual pursuits are considered an integral part of the high school experience as opposed to merely electives. When students graduate, they will have amassed a body of work that represents who they are in the fullest sense.
Our Objectives
The pinnacle of our student-centered Montessori education is the senior capstone. The senior capstone is an opportunity for young adults to immerse themselves in a self-designed project and to exercise adult-level independence as they transition out of St. Catherine’s High School and into the next chapter of their lives. The goals of the senior capstone are for students to:
  • Pursue self-guided research in an area of high individual interest 
  • Demonstrate skills developed over the course of education at SCM, including those of managing a significant project 
  • Develop connections and interact with professionals in the greater community
  • Think creatively about academic, social, and/or professional issues 
  • Refine verbal and written communication skills by sharing research with the larger St. Catherine’s community 

Our Expectations for Students
Students have some leeway in shaping the senior capstone as best fits their skills and areas of interest. However, all seniors are expected to do the following:
  • Develop a project proposal and timeline for their project 
  • Find a mentor in the area of interest and maintain timely and professional communication with the mentor
  • Complete a polished end-product and deliver a presentation to the SCM community on April 28, including a visual component to be shared with an in-person and virtual audience 
  • Meet all deadlines established for the presentation and project

Our Partnership with Mentors
We strive to work collaboratively with each mentor to support the work of our seniors. Although each senior’s project will differ, some consistent expectations for the collaboration are that the mentor is:
  • Available to regularly communicate with senior via email or other preferred methods for the duration of the project
  • Willing to assist in refining the scope of the senior’s research and project
  • Able to suggest resources, provide professional insights, and offer constructive feedback about the senior’s work