The Academy Scholars program is an opportunity for students with a passion for scholarship, creative writing, visual art, performing art, or research (in the sciences, social sciences, or humanities) to pursue that passion by means of developing and working on a significant, independent project. Students become Academy Scholars candidates during their freshman or sophomore years by gaining the approval of the Director of the program. Besides having demonstrated pronounced intellectual and creative vitality, those permitted to join will also have exhibited the ability to do exceptional work in the relevant discipline with a high degree of independence and perseverance.
Examples of past Academy Scholars projects include:
- Writing a full-length novel, a memoir or a collection of stories
- Pursuing advanced scientific or engineering research in collaboration with local laboratories
- Composing, performing and recording original works of music
- Producing an advanced portfolio of visual art
- Inventing a new form of technology for practical use
In addition to fulfilling other requirements, students have to find a faculty sponsor from the school department most closely affiliated with their project. That sponsor will serve as a consultant and advisor, but not as a project leader or director. Academy Scholars projects are student-initiated, planned, and conducted.