Integrated Studies and Design

Offers a unique opportunity for every Pioneer to pursue a passion or unlock a new opportunity

WRA has introduced a new multi-disciplinary department created to hone creativity, passion and skill. We've figured out how to give students real world experience, pursue a passion, serve their communities, master cutting-edge technology in our innovation lab and so much more. From ideation to entrepreneurship, communication and collaboration, WRA presents enrichment at its finest.

How does this equip our students for success? It gives them a more enhanced high school journey and distinguishes them in the college application process. And, most important, it prepares them for life.

"this new department emerged out of putting practice into theory. One of the exciting things for us is that students get to hone their passion and creativity in many different courses. we have faculty members from different departments across campus teaching these courses, AND you can see the range of WHAT WE OFFER. it's an exciting department where students are doing, making AND WHERE they are active. it's an opportunity for our kids to take what they are learning and apply it in unique and interesting ways"

- Matt Gerber, Chief Innovation Officer

Spotlight Course

Automotive engineering design

This course introduces the fundamental principles of good engineering practices through a series of projects, culminating in the construction of a push powered Go Kart. Focusing on the importance of specifying the objectives of the design, process documentation, and continual evaluation through testing, and design refinement. All the while emphasizing that engineering often allows many alternative solutions to a single problem. Relevant scientific principles will be introduced in a classroom setting while other days will be spent in the WIC building and testing components of design. The course wraps up with a race, where cars will be evaluated on certain performance criteria.

The Path

Freshmen: Students take both Learn to Make and Learn to Code.

Sophomores: Students take Learn to Live Well.

Juniors, New Seniors, & PGs: Students prepare for the college application process in Learn to College.

Electives: CL Compass, Automotive Engineering Design, Exercise Physiology, Engineering and Fabrication, Advanced Engineering and Fabrication, Graphic Design and Illustration, 3D Printing and Design, E-textiles and Fabrics, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, Idea to Product: How to Start a Business, Digital Video Editing and Effects, Financial Literacy, This Old Barn, Digital Fabrication Capstone, Service-Learning Engineering, Computer Programming: Python, CL Computer Science, Costuming for Everyone, Book Arts, Disruptive Ideas, Speech.

Fun Fact: Students have the opportunity to earn industry certification in WIC courses.

Graduation Requirements

3 credits including Learning to Live Well.

View our complete course offerings list and the Academic Course Descriptions 2020-21.


ISD Highlight: Compass

Compass aims to connect students with the world beyond the walls of Western Reserve Academy by cultivating their unique interests and talents and applying them to a real-world setting. A second, but not secondary, aim of Compass is to bring coherence to WRA students' broader academic pursuits. Over the course of the academic year, enrolled students will meet regularly with the compass coordinator and work to develop skills in the areas of project design, collaboration, scheduling and implementation, budgeting, proposal development, making a pitch, leadership and resilience, process reflection, professionalism, marketing, research, interviewing, presentation, et. al. At the end of the academic year, students will present their work for assessment before a chosen assembly. In order to be eligible for this program, students must submit an application, which will be evaluated by the various members of the program's steering committee. This course fulfills the upper-level ISD requirement. Only rising juniors and seniors are eligible to apply.



Meet the Faculty