By Sarah Elms | BLADE STAFF WRITER Published on Oct. 4, 2017 | Updated 12:01 a. m.

First in a monthly series on the Young Executive Scholars program.

Selina Griswold split 13 Jones Leadership Academy students into two groups and gave them a challenge: Without speaking, line up alphabetically by last name.

The exercise kicked off a new program called Young Executive Scholars, a partnership with University of Toledo’s business college and Toledo Public Schools’ Jones Leadership Academy aimed at preparing high school juniors and seniors for the college and business worlds. The challenge was Ms. Griswold’s first lesson in collaborating. It demonstrated how leadership and creative thinking are key to solving problems.

Warren Woodberry, the founder and moderator of the award-winning chess team at Jones Leadership Academy, reports there are ambitious plans for the coming school year.

First, he wanted to thank Doni Miller and Neighborhood Health Association/Cordelia Martin Health Clinic for purchasing new chess uniforms for the team members.

Students at Jones Leadership Academy have been busy after school, painting colorful murals that are being used to dress up abandoned buildings in Toledo.

The latest project they are involved in is doing a temporary artistic board-up of the Art Tatum birthplace at 1121 City Park. With support from Mr. Tatum's niece, Lucille Johnson, (the current owner of the property), the mural painted by the students will be in place until a decision is made about the next phase for this structure's revitalization, according to The Arts Commission.