Continuing its leadership position in curriculum innovation to prepare students for success at college and beyond, Archbishop Stepinac High School has established an Honors Academy which is the first-of-its-kind in the region.
The three-year personalized learning program will enable high-achieving students to pursue advanced studies in either engineering, health sciences (medicine), economics/finance or law, leading to potential careers. Upon completion of study students will a full semester of college credits through AP courses, research opportunities and internships.
Paul Carty, Principal, said: “Our Honors Academy helps foster the development of skills that the honors students will need to become globally competitive at the college level and beyond.”
To qualify, honors students in their freshmen year will need a cumulative average of 90% or higher and will be required to apply for acceptance with the knowledge and support of their parents.
Frank Portanova, Vice Principal for Curriculum and Academic Studies, noted: “Honors Academy students will develop and use complex algorithms to explore the major theories and principles associated with each discipline. A primary goal is to empower students to see the relationship between their academic studies and their application to the real world.”
The program will culminate in their senior year with an internship and a final capstone research project and presentation that will be designed to encourage students to think critically and develop the skills that will help prepare them for college, careers and adult life.
Internships and work-based learning will be a key component of the program.“Since our school’s alumni boast individuals who are leaders in their own right in a host of sectors including engineering, technology, healthcare, finance, accounting and law, we will develop partnerships in our community that will allow our students maximum exposure to numerous resources and real-world work experiences.”
Each student will be assigned a faculty mentor as well as an outside mentor for the capstone project.
Carty noted, “In an increasingly competitive college admissions market, it is important that Stepinac continues on the path of innovative learning to ensure our students remain highly competitive at the post-secondary level,” adding, “The Honors Academy is the latest initiative that Stepinac has undertaken to accomplish that goal. It follows on the heels of the ground-breaking personalized blended learning platform including the first-of-it's-kind all digital textbook library that Stepinac launched three years ago, establishing our school as a standard-bearer of curriculum innovation with educators across the nation and around the world.”