“The sense of community that Hillyer imagined 125 years ago is very much alive. Our program has always encouraged students to experience leadership, but now we are empowering our children – in every grade – to make a difference both inside and outside our School.”

Andrew Holmgren, Head Master


The Institute for Leadership & Purpose affirms our commitment to pioneer leadership and purpose programming for elementary and middle school scholars. As a mission-driven initiative, we seek to reinforce positive and growth-oriented school culture while remaining at the forefront of independent Kindergarten through Eighth Grade education.

Acquiring leadership skills has always been an important part of the Calvert experience. Our model permits us to introduce leadership in the Lower School and offer new opportunities to our Middle School students at a time when they are naturally developing these skills. Our Middle Schoolers need the exposure, encouragement, and responsibility that come with being the oldest students in a school. The focus on teaching these skills has become more intentional through hands-on learning at all grade levels. The goals around this program began with a simple question: What role do we serve in our community?


The Institute recognizes that each community member is capable of leadership. We believe a culture of leadership fosters an environment of self-discovery, compassion, and ethical decision-making. We seek to develop confident, responsible, globally aware independent thinkers who are empowered to share their voices as future leaders of Baltimore and beyond.

The $1.5 million in funds raised in support of the Institute will allow for the following programming: 

1. Purpose Learning In partnership with the World Leadership School, the Institute will prioritize the evolution of head, hand, and heart learning throughout our Kindergarten through Eighth Grade program. This emphasis on purpose learning will increase experiential and reflective practices across each grade and serve as a powerful lens for teacher development and program growth. Key elements of purpose learning will be cornerstone projects, community outreach, service learning, and many public/private partnerships.

2. Bridging Baltimore In January 2020, Safe Alternative For Education (SAFE) and the Institute launched a collaborative leadership program entitled Bridging Baltimore. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, 40 students (20 each from SAFE and Calvert) were meeting biweekly after school to cultivate friendships, foster a shared vision for our city, and collectively learn and act on social issues affecting our communities. Bridging Baltimore aims to break down barriers through positive peer relationships in our city. 


3. Speaker Series Through the Luke Stone ’86 Speaker Series, the Calvert community will be introduced to a broad array of topics, viewpoints, and people, supporting the School’s mission to foster leadership, intellectual development, and strength of character.


4. Leadership Summits Each school year, Calvert will host two leadership summits. This year, these summits will be virtual and welcome public and private students and educators from schools across the city to gather for discussions and workshops with regional leaders. 


5. Wayfinder Certificate Project Wayfinder, an organization founded by Stanford University’s, created a toolkit that draws upon purpose research and brain science. The goal is to equip students with the skills, knowledge, and confidence to become purposeful navigators of their lives. The Project Wayfinder curriculum will serve as the backbone of the two-year leadership certificate, instilling a sense of community and cultivating a deep understanding of purpose in our participating Seventh and Eighth Grade students.