Batten Leadership Program

“The earlier in their careers that exceptional students begin to think of themselves as future public leaders who can promote a better society, the greater the likelihood they will become such leaders.”
                                                                                                     Frank Batten, Sr.
The world our students will inherit from the previous generation will be vastly different and even more complex than the one we know today. Even now, leaders in our own community and across the globe struggle to manage systemic, seemingly intractable societal problems; the environment, healthcare, and international relations are just of few of the challenges we face.


The Batten Leadership Program was established to further Norfolk Academy’s mission, to prepare our students to become principled leaders in society.  Central to that mission is to flex a public purpose – to recognize and attempt to help resolve the challenges faced by members of our community and across the globe.

The Batten Leadership Program will instill in our fellows a sense of responsibility for the intricate and systemic challenges facing our global community. Our innovative educational program will provide outstanding, dedicated students authentic opportunities to lead, by engaging in a four-year, multidisciplinary and experiential course of study grounded in the pursuit of actionable solutions to real-world issues. Fellows will engage in deep intellectual investigation in a chosen field, and will participate in a dedicated leadership program to build the critical skills necessary to effect real change in our world.  The Center will reinforce and strengthen Norfolk Academy’s commitment to producing principled, civic-minded leaders for tomorrow.


Supported by faculty members and professional mentors within the community, fellows will work within and beyond the school’s required academic curriculum to gain a broad, multi-disciplinary understanding of a specific regional or international issue. They will draw upon this knowledge to guide a deeper intellectual investigation and develop actionable solutions to real world problems.

Fellows of the program will investigate issues in fields of study where new solutions are desperately needed, including  the environment, health care, transportation, education, and international relations.

Building on a combination of shared experiences and individual learning, and ultimately serving as mentors for younger fellows in the program, students will cultivate the leadership skills necessary to become active, engaged, contributing adult citizens and leaders in our local communities and across the globe.

Chesapeake Bay Fellows (launched Spring 2011)
Global Health Fellows (launched Spring 2012)
International Relations Fellows (launched Spring 2012)
Literacy Fellows (launched Spring 2014)
Engineering, Design, and Innovation Fellows (launched Spring 2015)


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