Student-designed Pocket Park Opens to the Public

Aug 23, 2017 | All School, Innovation, Upper School News

Atlanta children have a new place to play due to the creativity and work of Mount Vernon students. A pocket park, designed by learners in the School’s Innovation Diploma program, opened to the public last week.
The project was part of a large-scale development, a Whole Foods Shopping Center, in the city of Chamblee. More than a year ago, Jeff Garrison, Mount Vernon parent and lead developer of S.J. Collins Enterprises, commissioned students to design a green space as a part of the retail experience.
Their work, which spanned months of planning, interviewing potential users, and crafting the overall designs, was ultimately so successful that the entire project was renamed to Peachtree Station.
Seeing the project come to fruition was tremendously meaningful for the students who had the opportunity to attend last week’s ribbon cutting. In honor of the work completed, S.J. Collins installed a permanent plaque giving credit to Mount Vernon’s Innovation Diploma students.
The experience was an extraordinary demonstration of Mount Vernon’s design drivers of:
How might we make school more reflective of real life?
How might we empower all learners to be seekers and explorers?
How might we inspire one another–and the larger world–through the work we undertake together.
Read more about the Innovation Diploma design brief experience:
Mustangs are Business Partners MV Senior Abigail Emerson’s MVPS Magazine article
Students’ pocket park concept to be installed in Chamblee Whole Foods development Brookhaven Post article, June 1, 2016
To learn more about the Innovation Diploma and the design brief process, head to