Leadership from the Inside Out
St. John’s Northwestern Academies’ mission has evolved to expand our curriculum to provide students with an additional leadership model to develop the skills and character traits needed in today’s global workforce. By developing intelligence, talents, and passions in the classroom, on the athletic field, or through the arts, students will learn to lead from the inside out.
The Leadership Academy helps prepare students for college and beyond as influential members of a global community who are able to create a better future for themselves and others. The curriculum focuses on a unique combination of coursework that can only be found at St. John’s Northwestern, focusing on character-based leadership principles along with experiential learning in a student-led model. Small class sizes allow for greater teacher and student interaction and a recognition of each student’s learning style. Advanced Placement (AP) and dual-credit college courses are available to students seeking to earn college credit. Our graduates’ distinctive academic and extra-curricular achievements have earned them thousands in merit scholarships at top universities.
College Guidance Curriculum
College guidance and coaching are an integral part of student’s preparation throughout their years at St. John’s Northwestern. During the Junior year, students take a half-credit course to explore and develop post-graduation plans, write application essays, and receive further standardized test preparation. Students continue to work closely with the guidance counselor to complete their applications and aid in the decision-making process.
Beyond College Preparatory
The Leadership Academy provides additional opportunities for growth and recognition through a prefect-style model of student self-governance. Prefects are tasked with responsibilities to assist and guide other students, whether inside the classroom, in the residence halls, or in group activities. A Student Council, formed with Leadership Academy Prefects and Military Academy counterparts will work together for the common good of the school. These unique opportunities for leadership development and collaboration set St. John’s Northwestern and its graduates apart.
Leadership Academy Coursework
In addition to core subjects and electives, Leadership Academy students will take a three-year sequence of leadership development coursework. The program is designed to create formative experiences focused on students becoming leaders of character, competence, and compassion. A fourth-year capstone project will be included for 4-year students.
First year course focused on the history and theory of leadership. Students will examine various models of leadership and evaluate their perception and effectiveness over time. Students will develop a foundation in values development to build a principled view of their own leadership. Students will create a personal mission statement, a “book of leadership virtues,” and a vision for their leadership. Students will select and research a historic exemplar of leadership who inspires their own development.
Second year leadership course focused on the science of learning and seeking expertise. Students will examine theories of learning, both on the individual level and on the organizational level, to improve their capacity to increase their own potential, the potential of others, and the potential of groups and teams. Students will create a model of personal growth and development toward expertise and personal mastery. Students will engage in the practices of team learning, developing shared vision, and systems thinking toward building their capacity to effectively work in and lead teams of diverse individuals.
Third year leadership course focused on developing a philosophy of service to support building transformational leadership capacity within the student. Students will examine issues of social justice and develop a sense of moral purpose for their leadership. Students will develop and increase their capacity to critically analyze situations and systems from multiple lenses. Students will engage in service learning experiences. Students will create a plan of action for their continued transformation toward servant leadership.
Fourth year leadership students will propose, develop and conduct individual capstone service leadership projects under the guidance of an adviser. The experience will conclude with a public presentation of the projects’ learning outcomes and achievements by the students to the school and the community.