Lauren Geis is combining her need for a class project with her desire to see more enthusiasm and energy at Trojan athletic events.
The Hillsboro High School senior is trying to develop a series of theme nights for home games that would be funded in part by local businesses.
“I want to make it a big deal so it’s fun to come to games and get people more involved,” Geis said.
Geis said she was looking at Facebook one night and saw photos from “Neon Night,” an effort on the part of several girls in the football student section to have fellow students wear neon clothing and wave glow sticks.
“Well, they didn’t have a very good turnout, so I was kind of wondering how we could come up with something better,” Geis said. “I thought of the idea of having a business donate money for one night, and in return we could do some advertising for them.”
She tested her idea with her mother, Debbie Geis, who also serves on the school board, and Dustin Dalke,who teaches an art class Geis is taking. Both gave her a thumbs up, as did Scott O’Hare, who is overseeing the project as her Project Management teacher.
“I started working on it in sync with my class and created a project-initiation document, and a work-breakdown structure and everything,” Geis said.
She then identified several local businesses and sent them each a letter asking for a $50 donation in exchange for being the featured business at an upcoming athletic event.
Geis would use the donation funds to purchase supplies needed to carry out a particular theme.
“Mr. O’Hare told me to make it clear that this is strictly by donation—there’s nothing from the school budget going into it,” Geis said.
As of late last week, Geis had heard back from only one of the businesses she targeted.
“I was hoping to get a little more feedback, but I’ll just be patient,” she said.
In the meantime, Geis is pursuing other aspects of her project.
“I’ve started coming up with theme nights (ideas),” she said. “We were going to do like a glow-in-the-dark night, so I went online (and found a supplier). They have some glow-in-the-dark stuff that looks really cool.”
She and fellow members of the Project Management class have consulted each other about their projects. For example, one student is developing a highlight video for the football team and another is working to redesign the student courtyard between the high school buildings.
Geis said she hopes to have her project nailed down in case the volleyball team returns to the state tournament later this month.
“A big theme there would be cool,” she said. “We’re keeping our fingers crossed (that the team qualifies).”
After fall sports, Geis already has her eye on basketball season and beyond.
“It’s for everything—state volleyball especially, and basketball games,” she sad. “It’s something that I would like to see be a big deal, and then hand it down to somebody when I graduate.”
Any business interested in participating in the project can contact Geis through school e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.