A World of Opportunity

Humanities Academy

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What is it?

The MHS Humanities Academy is a suite of 4 electives that you can take during your time at the high school. Each elective focuses on the process of Design Thinking, a way of solving problems that utilizes a Human-Centered approach. Once the process is learned, we open the class up for students to delve deeply into passion projects and self-directed learning. At the end of the year, we present our work to the community during MHS Design Week at Humanities Night.

How do I apply?

There is no application process for the Academy. The only requirement is that you want to start directing your own learning, and develop your passions. However, the electives must be taken in order, and you have to start the program as a Freshman or Sophomore in order to enter into the full Academy. For incoming Freshman, the course you will sign up for is “Introduction to Process Thinking” and it is located in the Humanities, English, and STEM sections of the MHS Course Catalog. While the first class is open to all students, it will be a requirement for both the Humanities and STEM Academies.

Is the Academy a good fit for me?

That depends. Are you independent? Do you wonder about things? Is there a project you’ve always wanted to do, but never had the time? Would you be interested in directing your own learning? If not, are you interested in learning how to do these things? If so, the Humanities Academy is the perfect place for you.

Humanities Academy Options

The Design Thinking Process

The Humanities Academy utilizes the Design Thinking Process developed by the Hasso Plattner School of Design (d.school) at Stanford University. The course delves into the various steps and teaches students how to use the process to solve almost any problem.


A core value of the program is an emphasis on, and practice of, Mindfulness. Mindfulness is key to attending to the different aspects of the Design Thinking process, and we start this by providing guided Mindful Meditation practice to begin each session.

Course Progression

Year 1: Introduction to Process Thinking 

Year 2: Application and Experimentation

Year 3: Action Research

Year 4: Workshop

Capstone Project Examples

Victoria Fanning

Gloria Bangiola


Essential Skills

Authentic Research

Domino Project

The Humanities Academy

The Humanities Academy YouTube Page

Want to learn more? 

Please contact MHS Humanities Academy Teachers:

Mr. John Madden: john.madden@msdk12.net

Mr. Matt Daly: matt.daly@msdk12.net

Dr. Cynthia Laudadio: cynthia.laudadio@msdk12.net

Or the Program Director:

Mr. Michael Lockman: michael.lockman@msdk12.net