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Lights Academy

Lights Academy - An Innovative & Customized Learning Experience

Lights Academy provides an intensive, cross-curricular learning experience that combines elements of Christian leadership, practical problem-solving, deep study and research in areas of interest, and real-world work experiences through internship and/or service project work that fulfill a student's personalized goals over a two year commitment (see potential curricular activities below). This advanced, project-based academy is for students seeking a personalized learning environment that fosters creative thinking. 

Students are admitted to Lights Academy through an application process and then become part of a cohort group of 14-16 students as they collaborate together but also build a personalized learning plan around individual interests and aptitudes. 

2020 Capstone Projects

For their Senior Capstone Project, Lights Academy seniors deeply researched not only a topic of interest for themselves but also one where they believe their research can make a difference in the lives of others. In addition to working with Mr. Black, Lights Academy’s director, they also connected with another faculty advisor, an outside advisor that is an expert in their research field, scholarly peer-reviewed research, and other interviewees. In addition to their web content, each senior shared a 15-20 minute online presentation on their research to a gathering of students, teachers, Lutheran High peers, family members, and friends.

1500Abbie Saline
South Dakota School of Mines

The (Female) Athlete’s Struggle
My project explores the many struggles that athletes face, especially female athletes.

unnamedTy Schauer
Metro State University
Computer Science

The Process of Web Development
I explored and experimented with the process of web design and learned the steps and elements that go into making a good website.

Goldhammer, JakeJake Goldhammer
University of Northern Colorado

Successful Decision Making
My project studies the process of decision making and how we can make good decisions that will lead to success in the business world and life.

001-6015Sage Landrey
Colorado Christian University

So Where Do You Place Your Worth?
I have studied the psychological and physical toll that placing one’s worth in worldly things can have on an individual, and examined how to find true confidence and value in ourselves.

IMG-1865-OriginalAmanda Callaghan
Grand Canyon University
Criminal Justice and Forensics

Advancements in Forensic and How They Relate to Our Faith
The advancements made in forensics over the past few decades have drastically changed the way we look at and solve crimes in our world today. By using these same techniques to strengthen our faith argument, Christians can successfully prove their beliefs, in the same manner a police officer can prove a conviction.

001_5621Caden Anderson
Grand Canyon University

There is Hope
Life is tough and unforgiving, but there is hope. Life can become manageable again.


Meghan Otte
Texas Christian University
International Studies

Truly Empowered: Finding Freedom in Who You Are Created to Be
Exploring the unattainable standards set by society and digging into the truths of God’s Word, this project redefines success for women and discovers what it truly means to be empowered.

unnamed-1Savannah Blohm
Colorado State University

Some We Eat. Some We Keep: Why is it so difficult to think straight about animals?
My project is about the confusing relationship between humans and animals and why we view some animals as food and other animals as family.

IMG_6813Colby Johnson
University of Colorado

Keys to Success: What Differentiates Successful People
This project is a look into the factors that drive success and what differentiates the most successful people in various careers from the rest.

This one-2Jacob Schuster
Metro State University

The Negative Impact of College Debt
A college education has been a significant requirement within the American workforce and culture. But is it is truly worth the value one receives from it?

IMG_2705Cole Caskey
Missouri State

Managing Grief
My project dives into what happens in the human mind while grieving. It also shares the stories and triumphs of those who grieve.

DSC_0032Mercedes Pankratz
Colorado Christian University

How to Serve
Have you ever wondered what it takes to organize a service opportunity, from start to finish? In my project, I built a foundation for what a service project should look like and describe how to create a similar opportunity for the future.

IMG-0117Gavin Westerhoff
Grand Canyon University

How is the true meaning of God’s grace misinterpreted in the world today?
In my project, I study the meaning of God’s grace and how it should affect our daily lives through our relationship with our Creator.

image0-1Noah Zillinger
Grand Canyon University
Digital Game Design

Family Reunion: Relinking and Rethinking Family Life
If the family is so important, why do we not always treat it as important? This project researched how we can repair and enhance family relationships in the modern era.

2022-2023 Application

Download the Lights Academy application here.

Core Values:

Faith — Life, work, and research are studied from the perspective of a Christian worldview, analyzing who we are in Christ and how the gifts He has given us may be used in His Kingdom.

Responsibility — A personalized learning experience requires students to take responsibility not only for their own work and communication but also to support other Academy members in these endeavors.

Excellence — All work and activities set a standard of excellence to honor our Lord and the gifts He has given each of us.

Relevance — Lights Academy students embrace learning challenges that have both relevance for their future work and/or for the community at large.

Fun — Academy members find joy in exploring this world and create an environment where hard work to accomplish academic goals exists along side the enjoyment of working together in a less-structured atmosphere.

Vision Statement

Lutheran High School, through Lights Academy, will provide accelerated learning and Christian growth opportunities for academically exceptional and motivated students beyond the standard school curriculum, embedded within a unique academy cohort format.

Mission Statement

Lights Academy, will provide a Christ-centered, rigorous, accelerated, and personalized learning experience that will enhance student growth and uniquely prepare students for leadership and service in college and in their chosen profession.

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