The Impact of Music: A Student’s Story

Franklin Stevenson, Olympic High School, Class of 2012

Franklin Stevenson loves music. When he arrived at Olympic High School as a sophomore, he knew he’d found a home in his Music classes, taught by Mark Harris. “This school is like a family, and Mark’s classes were a safe place for me to come and play my music.” Since 2004, the Education Foundation has been the sole funder of the music classes at Olympic: Guitar and Music Performance. Mark Harris has taught both classes since their inception. “These classes are an incentive for students to come to school,” says Mark. “Many of these students don’t see any other reason to show up.” In fact, these classes were the reason Franklin stayed at Olympic. He graduated in June 2012 and was selected to give the student graduation speech. In addition to his regular job, Franklin spends two hours a day assisting Mark in Olympic’s Music classes, helping other students. “I love the classes; that’s why I’m still here.” When asked what his favorite musical experience was during high school, Franklin immediately starts talking about his guitar solo on stage with Jackson Browne at the Education Foundation’s For The Arts Benefit Concert in April 2012. “That was something I’ll never forget. It really was something special.” “Music will always be a part of my life,” says Franklin. “I’m so lucky that I was given a chance to pursue it at school.”