IL Human Performance Project


One of the most common questions asked by schools looking to implement the Human Performance Project for the first time is “what do we do with it?” While there is no single answer to this question, there are many valuable programs that serve as great starting places for new chapters. Below you will find descriptions of nine valued HPP programs. If you go to the existing chapters page you can see which schools are implementing these projects.


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The Brown Bag Lunch program provides a healthy, inexpensive after-school meal/snack. This program is open to all students, but targets students who are in after-school programs. The Brown Bag encourages healthy eating by offering students an alternative to vending machines or fast food for their after-school snack.

Running a Brown Bag Program involves a number of tasks including working with administration and cafeteria staff, determining cost, food options, payment method (i.e. QR code, student accounts, cash), determining pick-up times and location, promotional methods (i.e. newsletter, decorations, flyers), and making a timeline for all tasks to take place.

The Brown Bag program can be started at any time during the school year and has been a great kick-off program for many HPP chapters. The impact of this program aids in optimizing performance, promotes a healthier student body, and encourages living a healthy lifestyle.


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Fifth Quarter Events are alternative post-game activities that get the whole school involved! Fifth Quarter is a safe, healthy, and fun option that builds positive relationships. There is an unlimited possibility of activities and themes for your Fifth Quarter. A few examples include: inflatable nights, glow in the dark capture the flag, and carnival games. These events can be planned by a single school or between two schools.

The most impactful Fifth Quarter Events are after games where both schools have an HPP chapter and a big turnout (i.e. crosstown rivalry or a charity game such as Toys for Tots). At these events, all students from both schools are invested to stay and participate. These events could also be open to the community and used as an opportunity to fundraise for your chapter, or invite students from feeder middle schools to come to the game and stay for the Fifth Quarter festivities.

There are many logistics that need to be figured out for this program. Music, food, activities, service project, donations, raffle, sponsors, staff volunteers, space, promotion, prizes, t-shirts, individual’s tasks, and a timeline of deadlines are all things to consider during the planning process.

A Fifth Quarter can be planned after a major sports game that a lot of students attend and can be hosted multiple times throughout the school year. The main impact of this program is building community and providing a safe alternative to a "party."


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Science module education builds upon four major components of human performance (sleep, nutrition, mood and mindset, and chemical health). Schools, chapter advisors, and students can use educational resources for each of these topics to inform others on how these components can positively and negatively affect performance and understand how they consistently interconnect with each other. These topics offer relatable, engaging, and significantly important ways to improve students’ abilities to make healthy decisions. With increased education and awareness on these topics throughout the school and community, you can create a culture that aims to reach optimal performance in all aspects of life.


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Program Presentations involve chapter members presenting and educating high school students, school staff, and administration about HPP. Chapter members can teach and inspire excellence, leadership, and commitment! This is a great way to gain support for your chapter and spread the HPP message to more students. Presentations can be made to freshman, mini conferences inclusive of all students, to faculty during institute days, and in a variety of other situations. The intention behind these presentations is to enhance support for your HPP chapter and to spread the HPP culture to more members of your community.

The logistics involved can include meeting with administration to plan a schedule, determining the length of the presentation, developing a PowerPoint, tech support, managing rooms or large assembly, and incorporating practice time. A great time to present to students is during National Prevention Week. Speaking to faculty can be incorporated into an Institute Day or a faculty meeting.

This effort inspires excellence, leadership, and commitment. It challenges and empowers peers by: setting positive standards, building culture, strengthening community, garnering interest in the chapter, and providing education.


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Middle School Mentoring is program that provides beneficial leadership experience for your current high school students and helps with overall sustainability of your chapter. Educating middle school students about HPP and introducing them to your chapter means those students will come into your school as freshman knowing about and potentially looking to join your HPP leadership team. Middle School Mentoring can look different based on the needs of individual feeder schools. Often times HPP chapters give presentations to middle school students that focus on introducing their chapter and the four science modules. This approach provides low risk public speaking practice, builds communication skills, develops accountability, and is a project for the entire chapter.

Preparing for this takes a few months. The tasks include: coordinating dates with middle schools, determining when can high school students can miss school, identifying which middle school grades are included, presentation style (in classrooms or assembly), transportation, staff supervision, tech support, presentation groups, making a timeline, and allowing practice time. This program can include all students in your HPP chapter and can be done at any time of the year. Keep in mind that fall is an opportunity to kick start to the year with events like orientations and Red Ribbon Week while Spring is a great time to think about the 8th grade transition to high school and National Prevention Week.

The impact of this program is increased awareness of the group, healthy lifestyle choices, mentorship, getting younger kids involved, and camaraderie!


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The words in a creed define character and inspire positive culture for those committed to its’ meaning. Creating a creed gives chapters, schools, teams, and/or any other group a unified focus for a lifestyle of excellence. Students can begin by writing personal creeds with or without the Personal Creed worksheet. Then in groups, finding the commonalities between these allows them to begin to shape a group creed. By articulating common values, students and chapters establish the culture they will work to adopt moving forward. This then becomes a tool to raise the bar of excellence as well as establish a name and legacy for a group, giving younger generations a vision to aspire to.


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Establishing a set of high level standards for positive behavior and attitude gives students a clear understanding of what they are striving for. HPP chapters use student created pledges as a means to educate and hold their peers accountable to common expectations for optimal performance. Pledges may have varying language by chapter, but common components include: living a drug-free lifestyle, being a positive role model to your peers and community, and signing the document to show your dedication and commitment. Including signature lines for sponsors and/or parents creates a culture of accountability and becomes a conversation starter. The more students talk about their standards and behavioral expectations, the more they will be in the forefront of their mind. Set clear expectations for optimal choices for a culture of excellence!


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Awareness and prevention activities offer interactive ways to create immediate positive change and get students excited about information that can help optimize their performance. Certain schools have adapted prevention activities through stall street journals and social norms marketing. Other large scale events include Red Ribbon Week, National Prevention Week, Suicide Prevention Week, National Bullying Prevention Month, and Mental Health Awareness Week. Check out the chapter information page to learn how schools are using prevention activities to enhance healthy decision making and behaviors from others.


Having students recognize the importance of safe use, safe storage, and safe disposal creates a safer community for all. Activities that can be incorporated into prescription and opioid awareness include National Drug Take Back Day, distributing Deterra pouches, prescription lock boxes, and materials to coaches, parents, and student athletes. Student athletes are at higher risk for misusing and abusing pain killers due to athletic injuries that may require surgery or a prescription. Consider partnering with local pharmacies, police departments, and coalitions to incorporate prescription and opioid education into your chapter and community!

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This work is made possible by OMNI Youth Services. Please visit their website to learn more about the variety of services they offer.

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