Student launches website to help others succeed

By: Elizabeth Scussel, | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published August 4, 2015

BLOOMFIELD HILLS — Jonah Erlich, of Bloomfield Hills, sees himself as a problem solver.

When he saw his younger sister struggling academically, he wanted to help her succeed.

Erlich, 17, utilized his academic know-how and mentored his sister through her exams. After assisting his sister, Erlich set out to help others.

Last November, High School 101 was born.

The peer-to-peer online educational program is dedicated to helping high school students learn.

Erlich officially launched the website late last month.

“It’s basically students helping other students (in grades) below them succeed. In order to learn, students first need to learn how to learn. If I can help students love to learn, that’s such an amazing gift,” said Erlich, who will soon begin his senior year at Frankel Jewish Academy in West Bloomfield.

High School 101’s curriculum currently teaches studying and organizational skills in English, foreign language, history, math and science.

Students can learn through online tools and videos and through in-class, ambassador-led seminars. The ambassadors of the program are experienced high school students who handle learning content and tools. The ambassadors are actively engaged in the program.

“We are currently in the process of recruiting High School 101 ambassadors,” Erlich said. “We are focusing on recruiting students from southeastern Michigan, but are also reaching out to students across the country.”

High School 101 advisor and Birmingham Public Schools Superintendent Daniel Nerad said he’s excited to see the program grow and possibly develop throughout the country.

“Never before have I seen such a unique and valuable tool built and developed by students for students,” he said in a prepared statement.

Peer-to-peer learning, Erlich believes, is the most effective way for high school students to succeed on their academic journey.

Erlich said he’s thrilled about moving forward with the High School 101 project because it creates a support structure for each student and provides students with much-needed services and resources.

As far as the future, Erlich feels optimistic and hopes to leave a lasting impression on students’ lives.

“You need to leave a positive impact on the world around you — leave it a better place from things you’ve done,” he said. “This may be just a stepping stone, but every stepping stone holds its value.”

To check out High School 101, visit www.hs101online.com. For more information, send an email to jonah@hs101online.com.