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What is Lifework: GRIT's vision / mission?

Helping teens become effective leaders

Nurturing, empowering and inspiring the next generation of leaders through our faith-based, educational journey who will positively impact their communities.

It’s OUR time to change OUR world

What does Lifework: GRIT offer?

This leadership development program was developed for Jacksonville, FL and surrounding area high school students in grades 9th – 12th (age range of 14 – 18 years old). Our goal is that the students who complete this program will lead, influence and challenge their generation to excel in a life built on purpose, meaning, value and worth.

Lifework: GRIT teaches teens how to develop decision making skills, become more self-aware and how to their uniqueness to transform your word!

What does the acronym GRIT stand for?

God – Our foundation. Our curriculum is based on biblical principles of leadership

Relationships – Learn how to be a leader within your different relationships

Identity – DISC Personality and our identity in Christ

Treasure – Financial Literacy Session

What sets you apart from other organizations in your community?

Living a GRIT life starts with learning how to build your character so that you have “courage and resolve, strength of character, and firmness of spirit”.

Lifework: GRIT teaches teens like you how to develop decision-making skills, how to become more self-aware and how to use your uniqueness to transform your world! When   you complete this program, you will be on your way to lead, influence and challenge your generation to live a life built on purpose, meaning, value and worth!

What has your organization accomplished to date?

Lifework: GRIT  has graduated 60 highschool students in the Jacksonville area since starting in 2019.

What are your organization’s goals this year?

  • Monthly volunteer outreach activities to inform teens about the ongoing needs in our communities
  • Connect GRIT students with local businesses for internships
  • Connect GRIT students with local professionals so they can learn more about future career options

What does a typical program day look like? What is the agenda for each session?

The program consists of one kick-off party and five additional monthly sessions that typically last around 3 hours per monthly session. We also end the Season with a graduation ceremony to include a career information night. The Kick-off Party provides the foundation for the program.  Special guest speakers, activities and games as well as round table discussion time and journaling will be a part of each program session. Graduation is especially special as it celebrates the growth and legacy.

How many people will the program accept?

Currently we are accepting up to 20 students per program year.

How much is tuition per student and do you offer Tuition Assistance?

Tuition is $375 per student. Tuition assistance is available on an as needed basis. Please contact Melissa Sampson for more details.

What are the expectations for each student?

Attendance is required for completion of this program. Two of more absences will result in automatic termination from the program.


Students are expected to follow general ground rules of civility and respect. Some program days will require reading or other assignments outside of class. These types of assignment should be completed before coming to class as they are part of the program and what will enhance the experience for everyone.


Dress code is casual. Wear comfortable appropriate clothing. (No short shorts, low cut shirts or light fitting clothes. Those wearing inappropriate logos or graphics will be asked to go home and change.


Lastly, remember that all electronic devises should be turned off during class unless used for a lesson plan. (A point of contact emergency number will be available for each program day.)

What do the students need to bring to each GRIT session?

Students are expected to bring their GRIT Notebook and other assigned workbooks to every session. All other materials including snacks and water will be provided.

What happens if a student needs to miss a program day?

Attendance is required for the entire program. Each program days builds on the previous one and allows for growth of relationships with coaches, peers and speakers. This is also another way of teaching commitment and showing respect for others. It is imperative that you arrive on time and not miss as there are no make-up sessions available. However, please contact Melissa Sampson or your assigned Table Coach and one of them will be able to walk you through the points of the lesson that you missed.


Two or more unexcused absences will result in automatic termination from the program. To be considered for an excused absences, students should report their emergency to the GRIT office as soon as possible.

I’m interested in becoming a Table Coach. What are the requirements/qualifications you are looking for?

Table coaches are needed each year to have direct contact with our students. We are looking for people who know how to welcome and love others while sharing their wisdom and knowledge. Preferred qualifications include:


  • To be a GRIT Table Coach, you must have completed or be in process of completing the Adult Lifework Leadership journey
  • To be a GRIT Jr. Table Coach, you must have graduated from the Lifework: GRIT program
  • Effective Communicator & Teacher
  • Good Listener
  • Disciplined, Strong in Character and Integrity
  • Experience: Demonstrated coaching or consulting skills, experience using a variety of specialized coaching and development tools such as assessments and simulations
  • Reliability: Availability to attend all sessions


Please complete the Volunteer application for consideration.

Sponsorship Information: How much money do you need from sponsors to accomplish your goals?

While any donation is accepted, please see our Sponsorship Package for more ways to sponsor a student, a program day or our Kickoff and Graduation.

Volunteering: How can volunteers help other than making financial contributions?

Volunteers are critical to ensuring this program is effective. Please see our Volunteer Opportunities and the Volunteer Roles & Responsibilities for more information of how you can use your time, talent and treasure to help our next generation. Or contact Melissa Sampson to discuss volunteering opportunities: