The Value of Community
NEIA’s campus experience emphasizes what community means in terms of responsibility to oneself and others. Our goal is to cultivate a community that understands the expectations their fellow community members have for them—not just living for themselves, but for others as well.
This also provides students with a sense of ownership and belonging. We empower students to identify their unique strengths, bring them to the community, and gain confidence as they see their contributions create impact.
At NEIA, students aren’t simply participating in classes, activities, or extracurriculars. They are responsible for their place within those communities. NEIA is about understanding your impact, seeing how you fit inside the ecosystem and discovering how you can effect change.
When you feel known, needed, and loved then you in turn can do something that makes a difference and that is where purpose is really activated.
Explorations focus on sports, arts, and endeavors to encourage teamwork, explore individual passion, and focus on physical health. We believe that individual and team activity develop and deepen a student’s capacity to engage positively both with themselves and the world around them. Activities include athletics, special interests, student leadership, student government, community service, and student clubs.
Teamwork is central to healthy adolescent development. At NEIA we curate team experiences on athletic fields, in robotics labs, on arts stages, language clubs, or among nature. School pride, friendships, winning or losing with grace, and leadership skills are intentionally taught, cultivated, and assessed.
When a NEIA innovator experiences individual passion they take risks that build resilience and grit; they push themselves to the edge of what they previously thought possible and enter into a state of flow. At NEIA we coordinate individual activities at the school level, like tennis, art studio, or martial arts, that feed these passions. We support innovators who have developed specific passions, whether club-level sports (hockey, soccer, figure skating, swimming, etc.) or advanced arts and design pursuits. Students engaged in off-campus pursuits can share those details with an advisor.
Art (Props & Costumes)
Spring Play Rehearsals
Track and Field
Chess + Esports
Wellbeing affirms that as whole beings we must integrate our physical, emotional, and cognitive selves to best thrive and function. Wellbeing unites the individual needs of students and community to foster healthy individuals and supportive interactions. Wellbeing is a way of being realized through the mindful decisions, feelings, and behaviors that represent our commitment to integrity and belonging. Wellbeing focuses on 4 core constructs that are integral to the development of fully dimensional youth; Mindwell, Bodywell, Livewell, and Learnwell. Students will develop and practice competencies and skills in these areas through the Wellbeing course, during community events, with guest speakers and in advocacy groups. Additionally, wellbeing includes resources for students that need brief, solution focused interventions in the area of counseling, learning support, and physical health.
Both our curriculum and daily practices require students that are independent, able to self-advocate, and are here to challenge themselves and develop as learners and people. We embrace and accommodate neurodiverse learners, yet also know that we do not have the capacity to provide the learning and emotional support for students needing a therapeutic environment, a one-on-one school aid, or modification to the curriculum/daily experiences.
Each student innovator is connected with a caring and compassionate adult, an advocate, committed to seeing each student thrive throughout their time at NEIA. Advocates establish a uniquely personal connection to help students find their passion, develop their ideas, and impact their future.
One-on-one meetings between the advocate and innovator occur at least once every two weeks. These meetings take the form of lunches in the dining hall, reflective walks around campus, or coffee chats. Advocates ensure that the most pressing concerns—be it an academic challenge, study habits, social-emotional learning, college process, or identity—of an innovator are heard, addressed, and advocated for as needed.
Each advocate has a small group of innovators who form unique bonds outside of the academic experience and across grade levels. These connections provide students with ample opportunity to learn from each other. The groups combined with individual advocate/innovator relationships ground and guide a student’s unique experience so that they leave NEIA prepared to focus on what’s next.
Living is an extension of the student experience, providing a second home, and deepening the students’ sense of belonging to the school community. The experience guides students on their path to becoming more active members of their community who are personally and socially responsible, academically prepared, and seek cultural competence and global-mindedness.
Rooms and community gathering areas are meant to be warm, welcoming, and restorative. The connectedness of the campus environment ensures that living spaces are an extension of the school. Student life bridges the curriculum with a focus on wellness, weekly community meetings, gatherings, feedback circles, and peer leadership of dorms.
The living experience at NEIA is designed to ensure students develop into the innovators we know them to be. Through their experiences at NEIA, students become compassionate, independent, just, responsible, tenacious, collaborative, kind, and personally responsible citizens.