Academy by Design

God is a designer. We believe that students want to design like Him but don’t know how.  By providing flexible instruction, opportunities for collaboration, faculty mentorship, and hands-on applications, Academy by Design trains students to serve others through innovation.  We believe the need for designers is clear.  Businesses are looking for design-thinkers, especially those who empathize with and are willing to serve others.  We are ready to do school a little differently to help our students answer that call.

Academy by Design is a four-year program that empowers students to purposefully engage with challenges that matter to them and their communities.  Freshman year doesn’t look that different from what students at Wheaton Academy have done in the past, but, by senior year, students have immense freedom to shape their schedule around internships, online and alternative courses, collaborative projects, and deep immersion in specific fields of interest.  And, throughout those four years, students in Academy by Design take courses that teach them to think like designers, collaborate like professionals, and understand the needs of those around them.

Multi-Disciplinary Teams

Equips and trains multidisciplinary student teams to address local, real-world challenges

Design Thinking

Emphasizes an empathic, design-thinking approach to problem solving

Flexible Schedules

Gifts students increasing freedom to uniquely craft their schedules while still meeting state and college readiness requirements


Actively connects students with experts, internships, and community leaders

Why Academy By Design?

We do school a bit differently by restructuring their schedule so students can invest the time to create solutions for real-world problems with professionals.

We give students the opportunity to show colleges and employers what they can do beyond test scores through their in-depth, project-based experience.

We give students the opportunity to do Christ-centered service, year-round, through applied empathy and design.

As parents, we want to give students time to dive deeply into their God-given passions that we have seen grow in them from a young age, and connect those passions to real-world solutions.

Academic Requirements

More information

Design thinking is a powerful tool, and we cannot wait to see our students wield it for the Kingdom of God.  For more information and to see how you could do Academy by Design, download this information booklet.

Start Your Application

If you want to learn how to be on a collaborative team, practice solving problems, and are interested in doing school just a little bit differently, we’d love to hear from you. Tell us about yourself using the application link below.

Josh Burick


Contact Josh Burick

Instructional Technology Director; Science Faculty