Challenging Courses of study

The De La Salle Scholars Program provides the highest-achieving students an opportunity to mature intellectually beyond the traditional classroom. De La Salle Scholars emerge as young men and women who are faithful, engaged and committed to progress in the world.

These students engage in critical inquiry in religion, literature, philosophy, ethics and the social and natural sciences. The program bridges the scholastic knowledge of St. John’s faculty and experts in various fields with experiential and interdisciplinary learning components.

Above all, the Scholars’ journey will culminate in an understanding of the progressive learning process. Upon graduation from St. John’s, Scholars will be able to utilize practical and theoretical knowledge effectively to serve others and successfully navigate an ever-changing world.

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  • Required Courses

    • Grade 9 – Honors Scripture, Honors English, Honors Math and Honors Biology
    • Grade 10 – Honors English, Honors Math, Honors Chemistry and AP World History
    • Grade 11 – AP English Language and Composition or Honors British Literature, as well as a combination of three or more additional honors and/or AP classes
    • Grade 12 – Honors Seminar, a minimum of four honors and/or AP classes and the Independent Study Project
  • 9th-Grade Orientation

    Scholars will embark on two orientation activities, one in the spring of their 8th grade year at a team-building outdoor adventure, and the other just before the beginning of their freshman year. The orientations will assist Scholars in their acclimation to St. John’s and give them a better grasp of the challenges and opportunities that lay ahead.
  • Sophomore Field Experiences

    These field experiences will help Scholars evolve into more active learners. The four core areas of experiential learning revolve around faith, reason, art and politics. Scholars will visit exhibitions and museums, see performances, conduct experiments in real-life settings and engage in scholarly discussions with experts.

    Some of the field experience destinations that Scholars have explored include:
    • Shakespeare Theatre (student matinees)
    • Newseum
    • The Corcoran Museum of Art
    • Marian Koshland Science Museum
    • Smithsonian Museums (National Gallery, Dulles Air and Space Museum)
    • Forensic labs in the Natural History Museum
    • United States Supreme Court
    • National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception
    • Franciscan Monastery
    • Mount Vernon
    • Camden Yards
    • The National Cathedral
  • Independent Study Project

    The culmination of the Scholars Program is the Independent Study Project. Students will link the pieces of their scholastic journey together to create this project, which provides the ultimate opportunity for experiential learning. Scholars may create and test a hypothesis, create a work of cultural expression, investigate a possible career or area of interest or choose another area on which to focus. The project topic is chosen in their junior year, and Scholars work throughout junior and senior year to complete the project. Students will work with several mentors and present their projects to members of the school community.

    Examples of past projects:
    • Creation of a human-powered generator
    • "ACL/MCL Injuries in Women’s Soccer: Causes, Prevention and Rehabilitation"
    • Creation and implementation of a school newspaper at San Miguel
    • Understanding a political campaign through the eyes of the executive director of Teen Democrats of Maryland
    • The question of creating a sustainable food source for Nauru, a small island in Oceania
    • A drinking and driving awareness program for high school students
    • A low-cost, “FDA-approved” healthy cookbook and a study of current nutritional needs
    • "An Amigos Experience: Connecting American and Panamanian Culture"
    • Documentary film on the indigenous culture of Maryland expressed through food
    • Development and implementation of Model United Nations as an extracurricular activity at St. John’s
    • Creation of a high school history course entitled "Women in World History"
  • Voyages to Ancient Civilizations

    During their senior year, Scholars will have an opportunity to travel internationally during spring break. The trip will take students to the sites at the center of the ancient world, where culture, early democracy and civilization flourished.
  • College Counseling

    De La Salle Scholars have access to college counseling through interaction with the director of the program, who is their college counselor during their junior and senior years. Beginning junior year, Scholars will have access to Naviance, an online database for college and university information. During the junior and senior years, Scholars have the opportunity to make college visits to several areas on the East Coast. Specifically, the De La Salle Scholars college counseling services are as follows:
    • Junior Year - The director meets with parents and students in the fall of their junior year to begin discussion of the college application process.
    • College Visits – These trips generally take place in the student's junior year. They serve as an invaluable tool to assist scholars in their understanding of the college application process and the vastly different choices for higher education.
    • Senior Year - Students receive step-by-step counseling, mentoring and guidance through the application process and work closely with the College Counseling Office and members involved in the student's college decision-making process.

Admissions Information

To be admitted to the De La Salle Scholars Program, an eighth-grade student must meet the following requirements:
  • Top academic performance in seventh and eighth grades
  • Scores in the top percentiles on the High School Placement Test
  • Excellent teacher recommendations
  • Involvement in service and extracurricular activities
  • A well-written and well-developed Scholars essay
For information about applying to St. John's De La Salle Scholars Program, please contact our Admissions Office at or 202-363-2316, ext. 1069.
    • St. John's Scholars visiting England during their spring break.

De La Salle Scholars Program Faculty

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  • Photo of Kristen Logan

    Kristen Logan 

    Director of the De La Salle Scholars Program; World History and Geography 1, Senior Seminar
    202-363-2316 x1092