to be Different
The Davidson Academy, a free public school for profoundly gifted students
located on the campus of the University of Nevada, Reno, is pleased to announce a new full-time
high school option for the 2017-2018 academic year. The rigorous academic environment for which the
Academy is known will be available both online and at the
“The Davidson Academy’s online high school option is different than anything currently on the
market,” said Academy director Colleen Harsin. “In addition to the academic component, which includes
small class sizes and personalized learning plans, the online high school will offer extensive student
support and college planning services.”
The Davidson Academy is well-established as an exceptional school for profoundly gifted middle
and high school students who can move to or already live in the Reno area. The full-time online high
school option will bring this experience to students whose families are unable to relocate.
“Each year, students who are accepted to attend the Academy
are not able to move to Reno. I am excited that many more
profoundly gifted students across the country will now be
able to reach their academic goals through the Davidson
Academy,” said Academy founder Bob Davidson. “The new online
option reflects the Academy’s commitment to this population
by offering the opportunity for a rigorous online academic
environment where these students can thrive among their
View the entire
press release. The day school application deadline is Jan. 15, 2017,
and the online school application deadline is March 1, 2017. To read more about
both options and how to apply, please see the sections
More than Just a SchoolFor both the online high school and the day school, the Davidson Academy is designed to be much more than just a school.
At the Academy, experience friendship with like-minded peers,
extra-curricular activities, community involvement
and more. A number of of Academy graduates comment on this
“When I first came to The Davidson Academy I worried about
fitting in. I was worried that I wouldn’t find friends that
had similar interests as me and I was unsure whether it
would be worth leaving my friends from my old school. I
quickly realized, however, that everybody at the Academy,
both students and staff members, were and still are super
friendly. The students here have a wide variety of interests
and I am positive that you, like me, will find at least one
person who has a similar interest.”
“At the Academy, there is a place for every student, young or old, no matter their interests. We have students creating musical languages, working with lasers and debating like pros. Whatever your interest, no matter how esoteric, you are sure to find someone who can relate. Even if you aren’t sure what your passion is, there is still a place for you to discover it.”
“I think that one of the most valuable things the Academy does is provide an environment where everyone’s not only able to let their quirkiness free . . . the friendships here are about depth, not breadth, which is fitting for a small school. I’ve made friends I can truly trust, and we’ve supported each other through our years at Davidson. Conversations and experiences with the close friends that I’ve met at the Academy have helped me get some grasp on my place in the world and the way I should interact with the people within it. The people here are brilliant, insightful, and motivated, and if you have the right mindset, you will never stop learning from them.”
“The community at the Davidson Academy is truly incomparable, and I definitely wish I would have known before I started just how welcoming everyone would be. I made lots of friends easily, and I was happy to find that everyone was very accepting and friendly. You may think that we’re all
'nerds' here; while it’s certainly true that we value academics, there is so much more to us than that! Outside of academics, many students pursue a variety of extracurricular activities, from sports teams to orchestras to speech and debate.”
“Our small collection of students has a remarkably wide range of interests. In the same day, you could find yourself talking about topics like existentialism and differential equations, in addition to your typical brand of sophomoric humor and conversation . . . with an intellectual twist. Enough chatting with students like these would inevitably teach you something new nearly every day, even without access to classes like ours.”
“When I first came to the Academy, one of my biggest concerns was making new friends . . . On my first day, I realized that everyone was very friendly, witty, and overall lots of fun to hang around with. Stereotypically, it may seem that the intelligence level would hinder the social environment; however, at the Academy it just makes the social conversation more interesting and fun.”
“The problem of
'cliques' so common in public schools, is no longer an issue here. Social connections are made by individuals, and never by groups, meaning that all kinds of people find great friends that they may otherwise never have met, had it not been for the Academy. This also allows for the support of different clubs, ranging from social justice, to future physicians, to slam poetry and even cribbage. People are free to be whoever they want to be here, and that’s a great part of what makes the Academy an amazing school.”
“The students here are some of the most passionate and bright people I have ever encountered, and every day I find myself learning something new from them . . . There are days when I've had my whole outlook on a subject changed by another student. We're a student body that learns, and experiences, and investigates. I can't imagine myself anywhere but here, and I hope to see you come join us.”
“The community at the Academy is very unique. Not only are there exceptional teachers to help you get past any hurdle, but there are also highly intelligent peers everywhere. What is most important here, however, is the diverse and interesting student body.”
“The Davidson Academy is more than a laundry list of opportunities forged or found, it’s more than an ‘intellectual environment’, more than a ‘rigorous education’. It’s a home. Credits, resumes, numbers on a page, all fall away in the face of what is truly amazing about this place. When a CNN reporter asked me if people were happy here, I thought about how guitar chords and off-key singing echoes through the school almost every day. I thought about how clusters of kids big enough to block the hallways would emerge during lunch to play card games or gossip with friends. I thought about how cafeteria conversations would jump from Nicki Minaj
to quantum physics without missing a beat. And I thought
about me. Fourteen years old with wire-rimmed glasses and
beat-up-shoes, emerging from my first day at the Academy
with the inexplicable feeling that I had finally come home.
In some way or another, we’ve all found our tribes, our
people, an aspect of ourselves we never realized we were
missing, and I cannot conceive of a place where we could
possibly be more content.”
Online High School
New Online Option for Profoundly Gifted StudentsThe application for the
new online high school
is now available! For the 2017-2018 academic year, the online high school will include courses for incoming freshmen and sophomores, with courses for juniors and seniors to be added in subsequent years. The curriculum is two to three years accelerated and all courses are accredited.
Applicants must be 12 to 15 years old as of Sept. 30, 2017, submit ACT or SAT scores for incoming 9th and 10 graders according to the
Online High School Qualification Criteria and commit to being full-time students. This age requirement will be expanded upward as even more advanced high school courses are added in future years.
For Nevada residents, both options – attending either the online or Reno school – are free, and there is no application and assessment fee. However, out-of-state students must pay a $100 application and assessment fee. If accepted, out-of-state students must also pay a competitive tuition rate. Financial assistance is available for those who qualify using the
online FAST application. Some of the variables taken into consideration for Online High School financial assistance include, but are not limited to: annual income, cost of living adjustment based on location of primary residence, and the number of dependents in the household.
If you would like to go through the financial assistance process before applying to the Davidson Academy’s Online High School to see if you qualify, please feel free to do so.
FAST charges $43 to process each financial assistance application and this amount will be credited to the $100 application fee for families who continue the application process for the Online High School.
The application deadline is March 1, 2017 and, if space remains available, late applications will be considered until April 15, 2017. Please visit the
Online High School's How to Apply page.
Davidson Academy's Reno School
2017-2018 Application Deadline ApproachingA free public day school for profoundly gifted middle and high school students located on the University of Nevada, Reno campus, the Davidson Academy is now accepting applications for the 2017-2018 school year. If you are looking for an environment to better fit your social and academic needs, the Davidson Academy may be the place for you!
Classes are grouped by ability level, rather than by age-based grades, thereby providing profoundly gifted young people an educational opportunity matched to their abilities, strengths and interests. To attend, students must be at the middle or high school level across all subject areas and score in the 99.9th percentile on IQ or college entrance tests, such as the ACT or SAT. Please visit the Davidson Academy's
Qualification Criteria and
How to Apply pages. On the
Application Review Process page, you will find detailed information about the on-site assessment. Applications are reviewed on a monthly basis with a final application deadline of
Jan. 15, 2017.
“Thinking critically, being challenged to accomplish new things and ideas, and coloring outside of the pre-determined academic 'lines' comes with it’s own set of growing pains. But, at Davidson, it’s made possible. It’s something that every student here is capable of achieving because the spirit of these ideas pervades every molecule of the school. Here, if someone has the drive and motivation, everything is put at our fingertips to learn, grow, and achieve more than ever thought possible. So, I hope you’ll join us. We need more people like you.”
Valary Zvyagin, Davidson Academy Graduate