New Downtown Innovation Campus to Expand School’s Footprint and Prepare Girls and Young Women for Real-World Leadership
NEW YORK, NY, Nov. 22, 2021 -- On Friday, The Hewitt School announced plans to expand its presence in New York City with Hewitt Downtown, a new innovation campus scheduled to open in 2023. The school, founded in 1920 and serving girls and young women from kindergarten through twelfth grade, has an established Upper East Side campus that will continue to operate as its main campus alongside the new downtown satellite location.
Featuring open-concept collaboration studio and classroom spaces amid Downtown Manhattan’s vibrant mix of for-profit and nonprofit businesses and community organizations, Hewitt Downtown will offer every Hewitt student immersive, real-world learning and leadership development. Hewitt educators are launching several pilot projects with downtown community and corporate partners this academic year, while preparing for the opening of the downtown campus.
“Girls and young women are excelling in school, but we know that the rules of school are not the rules of the real world. Our world needs more women who not only ‘do school’ well but who also have the knowledge, skills, experiences, and habits of mind to lead in a rapidly changing world,” said Head of School Dr. Tara Christie Kinsey. “The Hewitt School is already known for its commitment to closing the research-practice gap for girls and young women in a purpose-driven academic program. We are thrilled to expand our footprint to downtown Manhattan with our new innovation campus that intentionally removes the firewall between education, the workforce, and society. With our distinctive program and unparalleled opportunities to collaborate with academic and industry experts in New York City, our students will be identifying real-world issues they care about and have the chance not just to study these issues but do something about them. As a result, a Hewitt graduate will be uniquely well prepared to lead and make a difference.”
Hewitt trustee and parent Adaora Udoji stated, “As a digital storyteller and tech innovator who does a lot of hiring, I see an enormous need for a school that prepares young women for real world leadership. Hewitt is the absolute best of both worlds—combining a tradition of over 100 years of educating girls on the Upper East Side, with a forward-thinking campus in a part of New York City where no other independent girls’ schools are located. Most importantly, Hewitt Downtown is not just a location, it’s a strategy; our program is designed for students to partner with industry and community leaders to build critical skills and perspectives to lead into the future.”
In early March 2020, in celebration of its 100th Anniversary, the School adopted a new mission: To inspire girls and young women to become game changers and ethical leaders who forge an equitable, sustainable, and joyous future. That year, Hewitt was one of four schools in the nation to receive an Educational Leadership Grant from The Edward E. Ford Foundation, providing funding for the school’s inaugural Learning and Innovation Researcher, who is charged with translating research findings into impactful, authentic, and measurable learning experiences for girls and young women.
“I have been repeatedly struck and impressed by the school’s bold, courageous, student-centeredness as Hewitt reimagines an education that will better prepare the girls they serve for the future their students will help create,” John Gulla, Executive Director of The Edward E. Ford Foundation, said. “From the very first exchange I had with Tara Christie Kinsey in April 2019, through the conversations I subsequently had with faculty, students, parents, alumnae, and Board members during Hewitt’s successful proposal for an E.E. Ford Educational Leadership Grant, it has been clear this is the right strategic vision for the years ahead.”
Co-Chair of The Hewitt School Board of Trustees, Suzanne Baillie added: “The time for change is here and now. As a trustee, co-chair of our Strategic Vision Committee, a lawyer, and the parent of four thriving Hewitt girls—two graduates in college and two upper school students—I have witnessed first-hand at home and in the boardroom the ways in which Hewitt is leading a strategic and ambitious redesign to ensure that our girls and young women are even better prepared to lead in school and in life. With this one-of-a-kind innovation campus focused on women’s leadership through immersive, real-world learning, Hewitt Downtown will change the landscape of girls’ education in New York City, and I couldn’t be prouder to be a part of this Board of Trustees, which voted unanimously to support Hewitt’s exciting future.”