Leading with Purpose

For more than two centuries, Emma Willard School has been a preeminent school for girls, building a proud legacy of leaders who leverage their education to serve and shape the world. Together, we are advancing a vision of purposeful courage and informed action.


Developing a shared vision for Emma Willard School began the day Head of School Jenny Rao arrived on campus. The work culminates in Leading with Purpose, our newly adopted strategic plan, designed to guide our school for the next five years.

What started with careful listening and fresh-eyed examination of every facet of the school quickly grew to include a formalized, inclusive process soliciting input from hundreds of members of the Emma family, on campus and around the world. The result? Inspired initiatives that show how we will recommit to our mission within five broad areas that touch every aspect of the school.

Each of these overarching categories defines an area in which teams are sharpening, refining, and organizing action plans. Together, we will chart a deliberate path forward for our historic institution—one that will ensure not only educational excellence, but also a healthier, more connected community and fiscal strength for years to come.

Approved by the Board of Trustees in May 2021, the strategic plan is a living document that will chart our course moving forward. The details of how we achieve this vision will continue to evolve as concepts are tested and new opportunities emerge.

Leading with Purpose: Priorities

List of 5 items.

285 Pawling Avenue, Troy, NY 12180 | P: 518.833.1300 F: 518.833.1815
PLEASE NOTE: All visitors to campus must check in with Campus Safety, which can be found at the red flag entrance to Sage Hall (Pawling Ave. entrance).

Welcome to Emma Willard School, a private day and boarding high school for girls in Troy, NY, and a leader in girls' education for over 200 years.