Grow Your Confidence

Postgraduate Year

A postgraduate year allows for an additional year of skill-building and maturation, positioning students to be more competitive in the college application process, to launch their career, or to be more successful in life. 

Even before the Pandemic, the cost of college and the number of students leaving high school without a vision, career trajectory, or purpose for their lives, has caused them to delay the decision to attend college or to start a career. The global pandemic has disrupted students around the United States, increasing the number of students considering a gap year or two. Wheaton Academy believes that the postgraduate year holds potential to nurture continued growth in students, deepening their relationship with Jesus Christ while also maximizing academic opportunities for college, assisting with career decisions, or equipping them with tools to discover God’s plan for their lives.

Many postgraduate programs around the country focus on academic, athletic, or artistic development. Wheaton Academy’s postgraduate year will also allow students to deepen relationships, network, build competency, extend excellence and pursue increased opportunities that bring glory to God in every area of their life.

We believe so strongly in the relational model of education that we want to expand students’ ability to connect with Living Curriculum Teachers™ as they seek clarity in their vision of God’s plan for their life. We want to challenge this more mature student to think with the mind of Christ and to engage the world accordingly. These students will be focused and better equipped for college, a career and life beyond their time in the Wheaton Academy Postgraduate Program.

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

A postgraduate year is a gap year — a break between completing high school and beginning college or starting a career that allows a student access to the exceptional resources, academic preparation, spiritual discipleship, and Living Curriculum Teachers™ of Wheaton Academy. The postgraduate (PG) program is thoughtfully designed, and it is supported by a dedicated advisor who helps postgraduates meet their academic and other goals. A postgraduate year allows for an additional year of skill-building and maturation, which makes students more competitive in the college admission process, in figuring out their career path, or in launching a career in a field of interest. 

Students should desire to grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ and to develop a Biblical worldview. They should possess an openness to learn, a commitment to grow and excel, and a desire to contribute to the community. The results can last a lifetime.

  • To engage in a challenging and robust academic curriculum in addition to taking advantage of a wide range of extracurricular activities (e.g., internships or project-based assignments) or pursuing additional athletic development that can extend their college athletic recruitment process
  • To build a stronger academic profile on their existing foundation, presenting a more complete picture to colleges and universities
  • To develop maturity to handle the independence of college life
  • To develop college readiness traits like perseverance, self-control, social intelligence, gratitude, passion, and hope
  • To experience opportunities for academic, social, or physical growth
  • To increase proficiency in a particular area of study such as business, entrepreneurship, writing, media art, music, illustration, theater, or athletics
  • To be known by the faculty, administrators, and coaches due to a small enrollment, allowing for supervision to improve study habits and relationships to provide valuable references for college admission or employment

Students looking at post graduate programs should consider the following questions:

  • Am I looking for opportunities to grow in my relationship with Jesus Christ through discipleship, chapels, community service, and course work to help me develop a Biblical worldview?
  • What academic, athletic, and creative resources will further my passions?
  • How can Wheaton Academy help me fill any gaps in my profile as I make the most of my talents?
  • Am I looking for opportunities to build relationships with faculty, coaches, and other adults who can invest in my life through mentoring and discipleship?
  • Do I want access to outstanding resources, facilities, and services?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you should consider the Wheaton Academy post-grad program. 

Colleges welcome students who are ready. They make decisions based on a student’s ability to contribute to a community and to flourish in an academic and social program. The most competitive colleges in the country routinely seek students who are well prepared to matriculate and continue rigorous academic work.

This opportunity increases a student’s chance of admission to competitive colleges because competitive institutions know our school and understand the difference it makes in college readiness. Our college counseling is personal. If you are positioning yourself for a four-year competitive college by seeking an extra year, a strong postgraduate program adds tremendous value to the candidate’s profile.

No; it is much more. All postgraduates have met the requirements of high school and earned a diploma. This milestone gives them flexibility in designing their postgraduate experience and curriculum at Wheaton Academy.  It has a much greater emphasis on experiential learning.

  • Postgraduates help in the shaping of culture at Wheaton Academy. They demonstrate a heart that seeks to follow Jesus.  They look for ways to contribute and serve others.  They model integrity as others observe their behavior.   
  • Postgraduates often have developed an area of expertise that allows them to be immediate leaders among their peers. Sharing their academic, cocurricular, or social/emotional talents gives them an immediate way to connect with the community. Postgraduates contribute to the texture of the campus while they gain from the complexity of an energetic, intellectually engaged community.
  • Due to the admission standards for all students enrolled at Wheaton Academy, postgraduates will find themselves among a motivated circle of friends. This positive peer group enhances the experience of the postgraduates; the environment further inspires and motivates the one-year student to develop as a student and a person.
  • Wheaton Academy will admit between 15 and 25 postgraduates per year. PGs participate with the student body seniors and other postgraduate students. Postgraduates enjoy the same privileges and experiences as seniors.

Similar to our seniors, postgraduate students have a wide range of course options available in the Curriculum Guide. Wheaton Academy operates on a semester schedule; first semester ends before Christmas break, and second semester runs from January through the end of the school year. Essentially, postgraduates will have 14 available slots (7 per semester) to fill with rigorous course options. Wheaton Academy requires that postgraduate students take a full year of Bible courses, a full year of English courses, a full year of math courses, and a semester of PE. The remaining schedule can be filled with a wide range of electives.  Postgraduate students may use some of these slots to challenge themselves with next-level advanced courses in disciplines they have already been pursuing—such as AP classes, calculus, world languages, etc. They may use other slots for subjects they have never studied—such as Business, Entrepreneurship, Marketing, Communications, Research, 3D Design, Ethics, Sociology, or other specialty courses. Postgraduates will not need to retake courses from high school unless they have the desire to improve their performance in a certain subject. Wheaton Academy’s dedicated advisers will work with individual students to ensure a schedule that meets requirements and advances areas of interest.

More information

See available courses and program requirements in our Postgraduate Course Catalog.


Let us know if you’re interested in pursuing a postgraduate year at Wheaton Academy. We will send you more information or connect you with a dedicated advisory.