What is the High School Seminar Series?

Tenley’s four-year High School Seminar Series gives students the practical, intellectual, and moral foundation to be men of character. Through a combination of classes, one-on-one mentoring, and career presentations by successful professionals, the seminars help students develop the skills and attitude necessary to be effective in high school, college, and later on as fathers, professionals, and citizens.

Topic of the Freshman Seminar: The Big Picture

The Freshman Seminar helps students see ‘the big picture’ of their life. Freshman year is not too early to start thinking about what kind of father, husband, professional, and friend one wants to be as an adult. Besides helping students to think about their future, the seminar addresses the challenges they will encounter along the way to maturity. Classes include a mixture of reading, discussion, lecture, debate, and student presentations.


6:00 – 7:00 Silent study hall
7:00 – 7:30 Dinner
7:30 – 8:30 Seminar


Dinner is provided at each seminar and is covered by the overall seminar fee.

Study hall

Each seminar has a required 60 minute silent study hall, which is monitored by a Tenley staff member.


All seminars are held at Tenley Study Center. For directions please call or click on the link “Contact us” at the top of the page.


The Center is a few blocks away from the Friendship Heights Metro station on the red line.  Students may receive a ride from the Heights School in the Tenley van; it leaves the school at 5:30 pm on seminar days. Parents provide the rides home for their sons; carpools can be arranged for this purpose.

Dress code

All students attending a High School Seminar are asked to wear collared shirts and long pants. No t-shirts, jeans, shorts, or sandals please.

Dates and Topics

9/26 – The Struggle for Success Starts Now
A birds-eye view of the next four years of High School and how they can prepare one for success in college and beyond

10/10 – Becoming a Man of Character Begins with Self Mastery
Knowing oneself in order to acquire new skills and virtues that will help one navigate school and life

11/14 – Time: a Nonrenewable Resource
Practical advice on how to prioritize one’s tasks and maximize one’s time

12/5 – Dreams Don’t Work Unless You Do
How to set clear goals for oneself that are both demanding and achievable

1/16 – Man and the Need for True Friendships
Ideas and suggestions not only on how to become a good friend, but also how to choose one’s friends wisely

2/6 – Leadership: Helping Others See What’s Possible
Learning how to inspire one’s friends and colleagues to achieve great goals

3/12 – Freedom and the Power to Do the Good
Acquiring a deeper understanding of the meaning of freedom that will help one reach his true potential

4/2 – A Cultured Man is a Complete Man
How to engage one’s mind to reach wisdom and understand one’s culture—going beyond homework and sports

5/7 – Living the Real and the Pitfalls of Relativism.
Having the proper set of intellectual tools to keep oneself always in the truth

More info

Please contact Mike Cheely at mcheely@tenley.org