Leadership Programming

At Nightingale, we believe that leadership can be taught.

Leadership skills are emphasized from the moment each student first walks through the blue doors of Nightingale's schoolhouse. At the very heart of both our curriculum and the wide range of extra- and co-curricular opportunities provided to students throughout their Lower, Middle, and Upper School years, the study and practice of leadership provides a context for girls to develop emotional intelligence, self-knowledge, empathy, and resilience that will serve them well within the blue doors and beyond.

To that end, Nightingale weaves both the theory and the practice of leadership into the day-to-day life of the school. Cross-divisional programming on topics including public speaking and rhetoric, group dynamics, digital citizenship and global leadership, conflict resolution, and decision-making for the greater good is complemented by collaborative public partnerships, talks by inspiring female role models, and coursework that trains students in pragmatic and intellectual forms of leadership.

Nightingale's leadership programming includes:


The Schoolhouse curriculum engages every student in the building in conversations and activities about the same topic at the same time. Students work together across divisions to think and work purposefully on issues including public speaking, leadership and storytelling, group dynamics and group think, active listening, conflict resolution, and decision-making.

Leadership Seminar in Class X

This new year-long, ungraded course provides a space for Nightingale sophomores to reflect upon and practice leadership in a group of their peers. Classwork is student-driven and project-based, and culminates with Class X students programming Schoolhouse lessons for the entire Middle and Upper Schools.

Social Justice Seminar

This Class XI and XII elective takes an interdisciplinary approach to exploring social justice movements, theories, philosophies, and practices with special attention paid to styles of leadership modeled in each.

Leadership Unit in Class IV

This new trimester course teaches fourth grade students effective communication strategies, public speaking, and negotiation.


Our programming is enriched through partnerships with like-minded cultural and educational organizations including Level Up Village, IGNITE!, Team Exponent, and the 92nd Street Y.

Speaker Series and Alumnae Speaker Series

Our speaker series brings inspiring female role models to the schoolhouse to engage students on broader leadership experiences.