LLI Student Spotlight - John Henry Posey
Meet John Henry Posey
By, Ronald V. Johnson, Jr.
Although you’d never know it by speaking to him on the phone, John Henry Posey is a rising tenth grader at Villa Angela-St. Joseph High School located on Cleveland’s eastside. His deep, commanding voice exudes wisdom and self-confidence beyond his fifteen years. John lives with his grandparents, Daisy and Curtis, who he reveres and who have provided him with so much love and support.
John is active in his church as well as in school. He is a member of his school’s Drama Club and is known for his acting abilities and for telling jokes. John is also a member of the Student Ambassador Program where he helps recruit students and greets visitors of Villa Angela-St. Joseph, among other things. In addition, John serves as a member of the elite Viking Color Guard. The Viking Color Guard presents the nation’s colors at school events and represents the school in parades as well as other patriotic events. The group honors veterans by following military ceremonies and traditions, and membership requires academic excellence and high standards of conduct. When asked why he chose to become involved in these particular activities, John explained that they provide the foundational and leadership development needed to help him achieve his career goal to become a legislator. For example, the Drama Club helps develop strong speaking skills and storytelling, while the Student Ambassador Program and the Viking Color Guard help with leadership and “people” skills.
LLI has had a significant impact on John’s academic career. “Last year [ninth grade] was the best year ever in school,” he said. John was much more focused in school, as evidenced by his 3.5 GPA. John entered the LLI program in the ninth grade and the program helped him become more aware of his strengths and opportunities, and kept him motivated to achieve success in the classroom. “LLI really helped build my confidence…especially in math,” John said. In fact, John offers the following advice to prospective LLI students: first, do not join for the stipend (referring to the $250 that students receive along with their summer shadowing experiences). The program can teach you so much about how to be successful in high school. For instance, John learned the importance of letting his teachers know early when he needed help. Second, it is important to be attentive and respectful because this will enhance the learning experience. One of the best workshops John attended was on conflict resolution. The skills he learned from that experience are helpful in any environment.
John Posey is a fine example of what LLI promises to deliver -- smart, motivated students who set goals, achieve academic success, and thoughtfully prepare for their futures.