#Resilience Blog

Building Resilience in Our Schools

I’ve been working on a promising and impactful project with Dr. William Summers at Burnsville High School and I wanted to share it with you. We’ve created a pilot program to help improve student wellness in light of the many challenges they face today, such as the post-pandemic effect, increased drug use, mental health issues, and school shootings.

Our goal was to introduce key concepts around Resilience using the 531 plan and provide access to the WHY Institute’s operating system to help fortify and enhance student resilience and self-knowledge.

The 531 plan for resilience focuses on personal relationships with five close friends, community involvement with three different communities, and exploring a core belief. The WHY operating system determines a person’s WHY or their answers for why they do what they do, how they bring that to life, and what people count on them for.

During the project, I introduced the WHY operating system to the students and met with each of them individually to review their results. Dr. Sommers then met with the students as a group to review the WHY.os results from a class perspective. Ms. Ganion, the teacher of the pilot group, also delved into each student’s individual responses to the 531 resilience plan.

At the end of the project, we asked students questions like “Whose resilience do you admire?” and “How have you helped someone build resilience?” We also discussed their personal projects incorporating their WHY, HOW, and WHAT.

The results of the project are encouraging. We saw a 27% increase in academic self-efficacy, a 15% increase in emotional self-efficacy, and a 2% increase in civic engagement. However, there was an 8% decrease in social self-efficacy, which we found curious. We plan to repeat the 531 WHY resilience program to validate our findings.

The project took place during the first quarter of 2023 at Burnsville High School, and we’re looking for three more schools to collaborate with during the remainder of the 22/23 school year.

Overall, we’re both encouraged and excited about the potential of the 5 3 1 WHY Resilience project. It’s a powerful way to introduce tools and perspectives to bolster student well-being. We hope to be a part of the solution to increasing student resilience and self-knowledge.

Can you help us run this project in a school you know? If yes, please reach out today.


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