New Heights

A program for middle school students, New Heights fosters an appreciation of the practice of architecture through experiences in the classroom and in the field. The course introduces fundamental concepts of building, design, and architectural language to help students develop observational, creative, and critical skills to engage the built environment.

Coursework includes drawing and design exercises, walking tours, and hands-on demonstrations in building craft.

The program was launched in 2015 at the Marymount School of New York and has since expanded to other schools across the United States, including:

National Cathedral School in Washington, DC
Alamo Heights Junior School in Texas
Girls Academic Leadership Academy in California
Great Valley Middle School in Pennsylvania
Carden Memorial School in Utah
Stanley Middle School in California
Gulliver Preparatory in Florida
Atlanta Classical Academy in Georgia
To learn more about New Heights or how to bring the program to your school, email education@classicist.org or call 212-730-9646 ext. 112.

School Staff and Instructor Testimonials

The New Heights program has helped Marymount School students make connections between the architecture in their own city, their own neighborhood, and even their own school. It has also introduced them to a shared architectural language providing a rich context to understand how place and space impact human lives.” – Concepcion R. Alvar, Headmistress at the Marymount School of New York

“The ICAA’s work with our girls comes at a pivotal time, just as they are beginning to see themselves as intellectual beings. They are hungry for new ways of thinking, new ways of problem solving, and new ways of seeing the world.” – Jillian Pagliocca, Upper Middle School Program Coordinator at the Marymount School of New York

“Participating in the New Heights (program) was such a heartening experience. The students’ enthusiasm and openness to jump right into the week was extraordinary. Teaching them about the inherent beauty of classicism, hearing about their favorite cities, and guiding them through the design process as they worked on the design challenge were highlights. Each student was unique, but they all were serious, thoughtful, and curious. While they might not all become architects one day, I sincerely hope the experience positively influences how they view the built environment. I am truly grateful for the opportunity to have taught this course.” – Michael Romero, New Heights Instructor.

Student Testimonials

“The architecture program was an interesting experience for my classmates and me. In the past, architecture was not something I was interested in, but I now have more of an understanding of the terminology and artistic endeavor of classical architecture.” – Marymount School student

“I felt that the architecture project helped expand my knowledge on a subject that I was unfamiliar with before. Not only did I enjoy myself on the walking tours, but I especially found that the hands-on activities gave not only me, but also many of my friends, an opportunity to learn what would have been nearly impossible to experience without the support and guidance of the experienced teachers that taught us all so much over the course of ten weeks.” – Marymount School student.