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Vaghefi ’26 and Smith ’25 Represent Bolles in Great Decisions Program
Bolles students and teacher hold Elon Musk biography

Bolles students Emerson Smith ’25 and Cyrus Vaghefi ’26 are participating in the Great Decisions Program run by the World Affairs Council of Jacksonville – a group co-sponsored by Bolles upper school social studies teacher Emily Edmonson.

The Great Decisions Program is a year-long student enrichment program on foreign affairs that fosters critical thinking, conversation and decision-making skills. According to Bolles Director of Global Learning and Engagement Natalia Aycart, some Bolles Global Scholar Program students can complete program requirements through their participation in the Great Decisions Program.

On October 23, Edmonson accompanied Smith and Vaghefi to a Q&A with author Walter Isaacson about his new biography on Elon Musk. They were joined by students from around the Jacksonville area who also participate in the program. The students had the opportunity to hear from Isaacson and ask questions before he presented to the larger Jacksonville community as part of the UNF Lecture Series partnership with The World Affairs Council of Jacksonville.

In his opening, Isaacson talked about the other noteworthy people he has written biographies about, including Steve Jobs, Benjamin Franklin, Albert Einstein and Leonardo da Vinci. He categorized all these individuals as creatives and creators, standing at the crossroads of art and science.

Vaghefi asked Isaacson the first question, inquiring about the similarities between Musk and Jobs. The students then engaged in a thought-provoking dialogue with Isaacson before his lecture.