1. Incarnate Word Academy is the oldest all-girls Catholic college preparatory school in Houston, Texas. We have been empowering Women of the Word to pursue their talents since 1873.
2. You will join a friendly, intimate community of just over 330 young women who come from 108 different zip codes across the metropolitan area.
3. Students learn at the highest levels with 16 AP classes and 13 honor courses. New courses such as Forensic Science are added to the curriculum each year in response to student interest.
4. We develop discerning, curious and empathetic citizens who are prepared to affect positive change in the world. Time and time again, our alumnae report that when compared to their peers in college and in the workplace, these skills give them a distinct advantage.
5. You will be known and challenged. Your teachers will serve as mentors and role models because they believe in the unlimited potential of each student.
6. 40 dedicated faculty and staff, 72% with master’s degrees and 15% with doctorates (2016-2017), utilize several different teaching styles and thoughtfully select the appropriate teaching style for the material, the students and the teacher’s strengths.
7. We value your spiritual journey and make time for prayer and reflection during the school day. The entire school comes together as one community in worship and celebration for monthly Masses at the next-door Annunciation Church.
8. In February 2017, Incarnate Word Academy opened the doors to a $15 million, 18,500 square foot academic building to provide additional spaces for classes, collaboration, student life and fine arts, along with a rooftop patio to bring the outdoors to our urban campus.
9. IWA’s innovative curriculum and booming downtown environment will help you become a big thinker. With Discovery Green, the Alley Theater, the George R. Brown Convention Center, and hubs of business and culture just steps from campus, downtown is our classroom.
10. Think about it: 100% of all the student leadership positions in the school are held by girls.
11. Our all-girl environment breeds a culture of confidence where remarkable intellect is of great importance, and the development of each girls’ unique potential is essential.
12. Technology is infused into every corner of the curriculum. Each classroom is equipped with a SmartBoard interactive teaching tool and our 1:1 technology program provides an iPad for each student.
13. More than 30% of our student body learn sportsmanship, teamwork, and leadership skills while participating in the nine different sports that we offer. We believe that the seeds sown on the athletic field yield strong, confident young high school women.
14. Through our Young Leaders Program you will have opportunities to learn and practice leadership skills at each grade level, preparing for a life of leadership.
15. Our fast-paced world requires leaders who can inspire through personal connection. We are passionate about preparing female leaders who are adept at connecting with others to be the bold, authentic servant leaders of tomorrow.
16. You will have the space to be passionate about local organizations. Our girls dedicate more than 8,000 hours to community service each year through our Christian Service Learning Program.
17. IWA welcomes students of all faith traditions. All students participate in liturgies, retreats, and prayer services and share their beliefs to create an environment of mutual respect and understanding.
18. The Class of 2017 boasts 2 National Merit Commended Students and 1 National Merit Finalist, representing the top 1% of students who take the PSAT across the country.
19. IWA believes that college is a match to be made not a prize to be won. Our graduates attend Ivy League schools, large state universities, small liberal arts colleges, women’s institutions, and art colleges both near and far.
20. The 69 members of the Class of 2016 received 257 college acceptances and earned over $5.5 million in scholarship money, demonstrating that Women of the Word have multiple opportunities for their college of choice.
21. IWA’s curriculum helps you stand out in the competitive college admissions process. Students opting for IWA’s Young Leaders Concentration uniquely signal to colleges that they have already mastered college-level leadership and business material in Leading with Business and Leading with Personal Finance affiliated with the Wharton school of business, Santa Clara University and Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University.
22. Our teachers are experts in their respective fields—many IWA teachers have entered the field after long, fruitful careers in engineering, politics and business.
23. We take digital responsibility and safety seriously and ensure there is relevant curriculum and communication on these topics for our entire community including students, families, faculty and staff.
24. Athletic teams practice at state-of-the-art facilities throughout Houston including our fourth floor gym and conditioning room affectionately called “The Nest,” the University of Houston, St. Thomas High School, Hermann Park, the newly refurbished Buffalo Bayou Park, and Houston Sports Park (where the Houston Dynamo practice!).
25. IWA and St. Thomas High School students play together in the band, star on stage in St. Thomas High School theater, serve the community through Campus Ministry, and hit the field together as football players, athletic trainers and cheerleaders. Go Falcons! Go Eagles!
26. Clubs and organizations are a vibrant part of student life at IWA. Girls are invited to explore their talents and interests in a supportive environment and new clubs and organizations are created out of student interest and initiative each year.
27. Flex Time, 40 minutes at the end of each school day, provides opportunities for you to engage in tutoring, collaborate in groups, plan for the week or participate in enrichment activities like speakers or stress management workshops. Through Flex Time, you will learn time-management skills and to prioritize your responsibilities and activities.
28. The Young Leaders Program is designed to help you develop a solid foundation in moral and ethical behavior. We are all working together to help our girls know and stand up for what is right.
29. UCLA professor Linda Sax, Ph.D., reports women who graduate from single-sex schools boast higher academic self-confidence and hold a greater interest in graduate school.
30. Each year IWA students are inducted into nationally recognized honor societies including the National Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, Sociedad Honoraria Hispanica, and the International Thespian Society.
31. Falcon Theatre puts on two extracurricular main stage productions each year. Theater teaches creativity as self-expression and resourcefullness. Students rely on each other not only to learn lines and blocking but also to run the soundboard and the lighting, to manage set changes backstage, and to help each other when something goes wrong.
32. Each year Incarnate Word Academy student artists and writers are recipients of regional and national Scholastic Art and Writing Awards.
33. The Leading with Service course empowers students to lead and serve. Students work in project teams to identify an area of social justice that breaks their heart. Once identified, the team is charged with planning and implementing a vision for change.
34. Each semester, our students create extraordinary solutions at Catholic Charities, St. Dominic Village, Summerhouse, San Francisco Nativity Academy, Wesley Community Center and Magnificat House. The Leading with Service program partners with six strategic non-profit agencies at which students serve each semester, aiming to significantly impact the agencies’ missions.
35. Our competent and compassionate teachers facilitate critical thinking and problem solving skills which inspire students to love learning.
36. More than 100 colleges and universities admissions representatives come to campus each year to recruit IWA students.
39. IWA students are organized into Falcon Families with a student from each classification to create a support system that starts over the students’ four years, but extends into lifelong friendships.
40. IWA students learn to take risks and lean in to challenges in college and in the workplace.
41. Recognizing that girls need positive role models, IWA brings professional women leaders to campus throughout the year for events like Career Day and Listen ‘n Lead, a TED Talk-style speaker series hosted by YLP. Seniors are matched with a mentor from PWC or Halliburton who guides them on topics such as networking, professional dress and transitioning to the workplace.
42. “I have never been so challenged and so invested in a project that wasn’t for a grade.” IWA offers UrbanPlan, a summer program hosted with the Urban Land Institute, in which students work in teams to respond to a request for proposal for the revitalization of a once-thriving-but-now-rundown hypothetical community. Students are mentored by local female engineers, designers and urban planners. The program culminates with a group presentation to a mock city council made up of urban planning professionals giving girls valuable experience in public speaking.
43. IWA faculty members serve as content experts and voraciously seek out opportunities to expand their knowledge.
44. You will work one-on-one with a college counselor throughout all four years to make purposeful course and extracurricular selections and to build an academic record and resume that reflects your unique experience as learners and leaders.
45. IWA provides frequent Campus Ministry opportunities including an annual class retreat led by students.
46. In your junior year, you have the opportunity to visit four very different Texas universities to discover what kind of college is the best fit for you.
47. You meet with the college counselor individually and in groups to discover college options, perfect applications, and make college choices when the acceptances roll in.
48. Girls’ school graduates are three times more likely to consider a career in engineering than their coed peers according to research conducted by the UCLA Higher Education Research Institute in conjunction with the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools.
49. “On my IWA tour, one student looked at me out in the hallway. She smiled, waved, and simply said, “You need to come to IWA! We love it here.” IWA girls want everyone to experience the same spirit, love, and pride for our school.”–Morgan Hall, Class of 2017
50. IWA is a family! “I don’t have any sisters, but the bonds of friendship that I have created with my classmates at IWA have shown me what being a sister means: support in hard times, constant prayers for one another and self-sacrificing love.” –Lauren Zammit, Class of 2017