My name is Mikaela, I’m in 7th grade, and this is my second year at The Davidson Academy. When I first came to
the Academy, everything seemed so different, and I was more than a little nervous. I had these big questions and worries. Would I be smart enough? Would I make friends? Would I like my teachers? On my first day, I was still scared, and had even more questions. Everything was so different, especially coming straight from elementary school. Now I had to deal with changing classes and having actual schoolbooks. Furthermore, it was hard to accept
that passing high school students on my way to class was the new norm. Not to mention the whole thing with having a locker. What was I supposed to do with a locker anyway?
But soon, I learned that all my worries were in vain. My classes were wonderful, as were the teachers who taught them. If I ever had questions
in my classes, the teachers were sure to slow down and explain it until I understood. I also quickly found that making friends was easy, as everyone was friendly and relatable. Having multiple classes and textbooks proved to be no problem, especially with all my new teachers and friends to help me along the way. Quite a few of those friends are high school students (I found that really, we weren’t so different after all). The school was everything I hoped for and more. For the first time, here was a school full of people like me, some of whom shared my interests, ideas, and all
who had the desire to learn. We are a very diverse group of people, but it really doesn’t matter because we still find
ways to connect with each other. What’s more, the teachers are dedicated and helpful. In the past, my teachers have always taken interest in my education. Yet they had too many other kids to handle and, though they always tried, they couldn’t quite provide the intensity of education found at
the Academy. Unlike many other schools, the Academy has a low student-teacher ratio, so this is not a problem (last year, I had a one person class).
Now, it’s hard to imagine my life before I came to this school. Each day, whether it’s while I’m talking to my middle school friend about his university class, sitting in my six-person class, or passing high school students in the halls, I remember what a unique school I’m going to. A common phrase at Davidson is “Only at DA will you find
. . .” and it’s true. Only at
the Academy will you find such a wonderful, educational community that turns work into play and creates this kind of a unique learning environment. But don’t take my word for it. Come to
The Davidson Academy and see for yourself. Maybe next year you’ll join us in our debate about the origin of everything.
Hope to see you soon,
~ Mikaela Prestowitz, Second Year Davidson Academy Student
2014-2015 Application Available If you think The Davidson Academy of Nevada may be the right fit for you, consider applying for the 2014-2015 school year! Visit the
How to Apply
page to access the new online application system. The Academy is specifically designed to meet the needs of profoundly gifted middle and high school students who score in the 99.9th percentile on IQ or college entrance tests, such as the SAT or ACT. Please review the recently updated
Qualification Criteria page of our website as these scores are mandatory for student eligibility. On the
Application Review Process
page, you will find detailed information about the
Upcoming Tours for Prospective Students
Each month during the school year, The Davidson Academy hosts a tour for prospective students and their parents. At these tours, visitors meet
current Academy students, parents, faculty and staff, and ask specific questions about the school.
Upcoming school tours will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on the following Fridays:
Jan. 31, 2014
Feb. 14, 2014
March 14, 2014
For details, including directions to The Davidson Academy and RSVP information, please visit the
Tours page. If you would like more information, please contact us at
Davidson Academy students thrive off of each others’ ideas and insights both in and
out of the classroom. Students are encouraged to participate in clubs,
teams and community activities.
Click here to see a list of activities currently offered
at the Academy.
Extracurricular Activities Students also often take part in academic competitions, such as
MATHCOUNTS, spelling bees, geography bees and the Knowledge Bowl.
Outside of school, Academy students participate in martial arts, figure
skating, gymnastics, swimming, soccer, baseball and Irish dancing. They
also perform with local music groups
like the Reno Philharmonic, the Reno
Chamber Orchestra, the Reno Youth
Jazz Orchestra and the Lake Tahoe
Music Camp Symphonic Band. Students
who wish to participate in high school
athletics can try out for Reno-area high
View the Regional Opportunities page
for information on academics, arts and
culture, outdoor interests, and more in the Reno area.
What are some of the things you do as Events & Accounting Manager at the Academy?
One of my favorite aspects about working at the Davidson Academy of Nevada (besides amazing students and coworkers), is being able to work on a variety of different projects which utilize different sets of skills and present unique challenges. As the Events Manager, I am involved with the organization of our monthly tours, orientation, back to school night, graduation, and a huge variety of student club events from dances and field trips to guest speakers and overnight lock-in events.
When wearing my “Accounting Manager Hat”, I spend my time ordering textbooks, lab equipment and miscellaneous supplies. I also process all payments and bills and coordinate our school fundraisers.
My other major project is to manage the Student Chaperone Program. Honor students from the University of Nevada, Reno are hired to supervise students during lunch, study halls, and while using our shuttles on the
University campus. For Davidson Academy students enrolled in University of Nevada, Reno courses, I also arrange for the chaperones to escort students to and from their University classes. We currently have 40
percent of our student body accessing courses at the University.
What is your favorite aspect about working with Academy students? I am continually inspired and encouraged by positive interactions our students have with each other and the staff. It is great to see everyone working so well together. For the last few years Student Council has been organizing an overnight lock-in for the school. It has turned out to be one of the most successful events with nearly 70
percent of the student body attending. The students organize video game tournaments, art projects, and musical celebrations throughout the night as well as pizza, ice cream sundaes and a pancake breakfast. It is incredible to watch them make sure everyone feels included, is respected, and is having a good time. Students are not pressured to stay awake if they don’t want to, and those that prefer quiet time to recharge are given their space. It makes me proud to be part of this community and happy to give up a night of sleep to provide them with delicious pancakes in the morning.
What are some of the exciting activities occurring over the next few months?
Spring semester always seems to fly by with a variety of exciting events. I can hardly wait to assist with our spring lock-in and spring formal/prom. This year we will graduate our largest class yet with 27 graduates - I look forward to planning a wonderful ceremony for our students.
2014 Davidson Fellows Scholarship The 2014 Davidson Fellows
Scholarship application is now
available online! Young people 18 and younger have the opportunity to earn a $50,000, $25,000 or $10,000 scholarship in recognition of a significant piece of work in the categories of Science, Technology,
Engineerong, Mathematics, Music, Literature and Philosophy, or a project that represents Outside the Box thinking. The application deadline is February 12, 2014.
2014 THINK Summer Institute
The THINK Summer Institute is a three-week residential summer program on the campus of the University of Nevada, Reno where students can earn up to six college credits by completing two university courses. The 2014 THINK Summer Institute will run from July 12 through Aug.
2. Tuition is $3,400 and covers course credits, books and materials, room and board and the cost of planned activities. Need-based scholarships are available. To qualify, students
from across the country must be 13 to 16 years old during THINK and must meet or exceed composite SAT score of 1130 (excludes writing portion) or ACT score of 26. The application deadline is
April 1, 2014. Homeschooled students are eligible to apply.
Filmed three years ago, this video still contains
relevant information for those wanting to learn what makes the Academy unique from firsthand accounts of those who know the school best – students, parents, instructors and staff. Hear about the school’s curriculum, social atmosphere and the Reno-Tahoe area. Subscribe to the
YouTube channel where you can rate and comment on all the videos posted.
Davidson Academy of Nevada was featured in the Las Vegas
Nevada colleges welcome academically gifted youth.
Academy student Sarah MacHarg describes her experiences
taking University of Nevada, Reno courses as part of her
“I know that Davidson was the right choice for me, and that it will be for a lot of profoundly gifted students to come. From the bottom of my heart, I encourage you to look into The Davidson Academy as an option—if you choose this route, I promise you won’t regret it.”
Ian McKeachie, Davidson Academy Graduate (pictured, left)
If you have been forwarded this Davidson Academy
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