Professional Expectations

Professional Preparation with a College-Style Education

While many “college prep” schools ask their students to cram encyclopedic amounts of broad and shallow information semester after semester, they don’t do very much to prepare students for what college, or the professional world of working adults, is actually like. Even students at elite private high schools find themselves moving from a world in which every educational moment has been structured for them as a high school senior, to a world in which they are suddenly responsible for managing their own educational plan, their own study and work time, and their own social obligations as a college freshman or young professional. Tossed into the deep end, students must sink or swim.

Insight students are prepared for the responsibilities and opportunities of young adult life through a high school experience that mirrors it. Every semester, Insight students take three or four academic courses that meet for three hours per week for intensive discussion, lecture, and practice guided by experts. Like college courses, class time at Insight isn’t for sitting at your desk and filling out worksheets or listening to your Instructor read aloud the instructions you could have read at home. Instead, students are expected to do substantial work outside of their classes to prepare for seminar, so that they can develop their ideas and understandings of authentic material with guidance and input from peers and expert Instructors.

Students, faculty, and staff discuss the connections between history fo science and physics in the social study hall.

When they’re not in seminar, Insight students spend time in a social study hall where they can discuss their materials with peers, faculty, and staff, or a quiet study hall where they can focus on reading, writing, research, and the production of high-quality work. Instead of throwing students into a situation where they must manage their unstructured time and hoping they will figure it out for themselves, Insight faculty model and mentor students in the kinds of organizational and social skills that are required not simply to balance, but to integrate, work and social life.

In addition to the support students get building professional skills from the institutional structure, Insight advises students through a number of educational phases with explicit goals directed towards the proficienies students will need to succeed in college or professional work. In the first of these phases, students are carefully guided in the time management and technical skills required to write a high-quality professional paper, conduct research using an academic library, and apply their mathematical and logical reasoning skills to real world problems. When students master these skills and learn to organize their time, their advisors help them leverage this newfound responsibility to more fully pursue their passions through coursework and beyond, and deepen their learning.