The Bonner Leaders are students dedicated to improving lives in the community. They respond to the economic, social, and cultural challenges affecting the quality of life in the city of Houston. The Bonners are top academic performers who learn by engaging in the community. Through their project-based service, Bonners learn critical skills, including leadership, teamwork, project planning, and time management.
The Bonner Commitment
Students admitted to the UH Bonner program are expected to undergo a rigorous learning and growth experience which consists of a "core" two years of service on a Bonner project (see below), leadership-development seminars and issue area learning, and eventual project executive leadership. This core two-year experience is followed by a more flexible and customizable service-learning period in which students can design their own experience and engagement opportunities or choose from a set of pre-identified opportunities. These upperclassman years might include further project leadership, policy or issue area research, a basic membership, external internship, Bonner senior internship, or other opportunities.
Bonner students serve on one of five Bonner projects aimed at alleviating the effects of poverty in Houston in the areas of education and food insecurity. Projects include:
- Austin Test Prep (ATP) – SAT and college readiness tutoring and mentoring with high school juniors and seniors with partners Stephen F. Austin High School and Breakthrough Houston
- Food Insecurity Team (FIT) – Food distribution and nutrition education for community members with partners New Hope Housing, Riverside Methodist Church, Yates High School, and the Houston Food Bank
- ImpACT – ACT and college readiness tutoring and mentoring with high school juniors and seniors with partners KIPP Sunnyside High School and KIPP Houston
- Science Mentoring for a Richer Tomorrow (SMART) – Science mentoring and tutoring with 5th graders at partner with partner Shearn Elementary School
- Writing to Inspire Successful Education (WISE) – Writing and reading tutoring with 4th and 5th graders with partner Briscoe Elementary School