London and Leadership: SEGL’s (Virtual) Summer Institute

Do you want the best possible opportunity to improve your leadership skills?  Do you want to make life-long friends who care about the world as deeply as you?  Do you believe that one high school student can change the world?  Then join us (virtually) in London this summer for an incredible experience you won’t find anywhere else: SEGL’s Summer Ethics and Leadership Institute!


London may be the most influential city in the world.  Long a hub for culture, economics, and empire, its impending “Brexit” from the European Union will have ripple effects around the globe.  For those who want to be international leaders, there is no better place to study.

Our three-week Ethics and Leadership Institute is for a hand-picked group of high school students from across the country.  The program is intentionally small in order to build a tight-knit community, enhance collaboration skills, and learn from one another and our roster of guest experts.  The Institute will take place July 6-July 24.


Summer 2018 students with Seb Dance, former member of the European Parliament for London.

Why did the United Kingdom vote to “Brexit” the European Union?  How did it achieve historic reconciliation in Northern Ireland?  What is the best way for countries to interact with the Trump Administration?  These are the types of questions challenging British and American leaders today.  This summer they will challenge you, too.

At the online Institute, you will study a range of global ethical dilemmas and the responses of the international community.  You will meet with the very people who work on these issues, often presenting your work to them for evaluation.  Would you like to argue for Brexit against a politician who campaigned to stay in the European Union? Do you want to discuss the relationship between the Queen and Parliament with a sitting Member of Parliament? Would you like to present and defend your policy memo to an expert on the warring former British colonies of India and Pakistan?  Then this is the program for you.

You will produce three capstone projects, each of which will enhance your leadership résumé: an ethical Credo, a collaborative policy document, and a business plan for a social venture that you will launch in your community.  These projects will help demonstrate your ability and growth to colleges, the wider world, and–most important–yourself.

Each school day participants will meet virtually with Institute faculty, who will facilitate state-of-the-art online learning.  Learning at the Institute is primarily synchronous, meaning participants will meet and work together in real time, rather than individually on their own schedule.


n.b. The following is subject to State Department and/or CDC-imposed travel restrictions.

One of our faculty members will be located on the ground in London, equipped with top-of-the-line virtual technology to facilitate remote videoconferencing and live streaming.  Participants will “travel” with this faculty member in real time to guest speaker sessions, cultural attractions, and more.


Last night: After receiving your ingredients in the mail, make sticky toffee pudding together online with Susana Heureaux (SEGL’s chef).
Prep: An interactive lecture on British Imperialism, and pro and con articles about the ethics of keeping cultural artifacts from the British colonial era, pulled from local sources like the Financial Times.
Morning: Visit British Museum “virtually” with Christian (SEGL faculty member in London) to see the Rosetta Stone or the Elgin Marbles (examples of cultural artifact from colonial era).
Post-Museum discussion (over sticky toffee pudding from last night!) with Christian about ethics of displaying cultural artifacts from colonial era; critical thinking activity with you deciding what you might do about this issue as the director of the British Museum.
Late afternoon: Leadership styles exercise with Ali (SEGL faculty member).


Christian Starling, Co-Director

Christian Starling is Academic Dean, Director of the London Program and English teacher at SEGL.  He is on his second SEGL tour of duty; prior to his return in 2017 he spent three years as an administrator and Humanities teacher at Community Charter School of Cambridge in Massachusetts.  Christian is a graduate of Harvard University, where he earned a degree in Social Anthropology and a secondary certification in Visual and Environmental Studies.

Alison Pratt, Co-Director

Ali Pratt is Dean of Residential Life, Director of the London Program, and Ethics and Leadership Coordinator at SEGL.  She holds a BA in History, with a concentration in Women and Gender Studies, from Kenyon College.  Prior to her time at SEGL, she worked at the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth in Maryland and East Knox High School in Ohio.


For Summer 2020, tuition is $1,995 and covers course material (such as a subscription to The Economist or the Financial Times) and other incidentals (sticky toffee pudding ingredients, for example).  We have limited financial aid available; please visit our Tuition and Financial Assistance page for more details. Email if you have questions.