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Bruns Academy / Providence Day School 8th Grade Leadership Collaborative

Date: 2015-16; 2016-17
Guiding/inciting Questions: How might we build community and cultivate leadership between 8th graders at Bruns Academy and Providence Day School? How might we enable students to design an experience, product, or action in support of building our collective community?
Number of Students Involved: ~100 (Bruns and PDS combined)
Faculty/Staff Involved: Michael Magno; Barry Sherman; Andrea Downs, Brian Li; Kenyatta Bigger; Nadia Johnson & Rosalyn Allison-Jacobs.

Over the past two years, Michael Magno and Barry Sherman have launched and grown a program connecting 8th grade students from Providence Day School and Bruns Academy.  The initial idea involved students from both schools coming together to learn from one another about diversity, sustainability, community, and leadership.  The Center provided consultation about the overarching structures and components of the program as well as facilitating creative, collaborative problem-solving workshops for the students.  Last year, the first experience was shared in a MARCOM produced video short.  Most recently, the Center supported Michael and Barry sharing their story through a design experience they created for the Private Schools with Public Purpose conference.


  • “I know that both Bruns and PDS came away with the ability to develop an ensemble, collaborative experience, and the ability to experience empathetic problem solving.  I want to thank Matt and Ryan for providing a valuable resource for the Middle School division, and I look forward to working with them in the future.” -Barry Sherman



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