Greenbrier Academy

Pence Springs, WV

304 445 7790

Vivian Conly


Girls Only

Call admissions department for current tuition.

Greenbrier Academy is a girls’ therapeutic boarding school that integrates personal discovery, character development and academic excellence. Specifically designed to assist young women in their academic development and self confidence, the Academy embodies the vision of a healthy campus for leaders of tomorrow. Located in the Greenbrier Valley of West Virginia on 140 acres, the campus borders the Greenbrier River and provides an ideal bucolic setting that is conducive to creativity and growth.

Our beautiful campus is home to young women in grades 9 through 12, accommodating a total enrollment of 95. Students participate in academics both inside and outside the classroom through experiential and project-based curricula. They also engage in a wide variety of outdoor and extracurricular activities. Students work together as a community, learning how to support one another and discovering unique ways of expressing their talents for the benefit of the whole school. Students are encouraged in exploring, defining, and implementing their personal goals and values. Counselors and mentors work closely with students, providing support, encouragement, and challenging them to look beyond themselves for meaning and understanding. Additionally, students learn the value of embracing an altruistic life purpose and have the freedom to embrace their personal relationship with a higher power.

Greenbrier Academy serves young women between the ages of 14 and 17. Our admissions criteria are as follows:

Have successfully graduated from an outdoor character building, wilderness or other residential programs and are in need of continuing care and support (recommended but not required);
Possess an average to above-average IQ;
May be interested in preparation for post-secondary education;
May need a drug-free environment with a substance abuse prevention component;
Possess the potential to develop her conscience and social awareness;
May be currently behind academically in secondary educational requirements;
May need elicitation and development of her learning style;
May have family relational conflicts;
May have peer relational conflicts;
May feel a lack of meaning or purpose in life;
May benefit from small classes and one-on-one mentoring.
Greenbrier Academy generally does not serve residents with one or more of the following characteristics:

Have not successfully graduated from an outdoor character building, wilderness or other high adventure residential program;
Appear to be a significant danger to self, others or property;
Psychotic disorders;
Have medical or health conditions that would prevent him/her from participating in rigorous program activities;
Have health conditions that require unreasonable health care supervision by physicians or other health care professionals;
Have an IQ significantly below average;
Have parents/guardians with little or no commitment to the company family program;
Are living under guardianship of divorced parents who share joint custody of the child and who do not concur in the enrollment;
Have reached the age of majority and are unwilling to enroll.

Therapeutic Component
Most of our residents have successfully completed a short-term outdoor program. They have embraced new knowledge and understanding about themselves and have begun to cultivate improved relationships with their peers and families. To support this growth, our therapeutic model permeates all aspects of campus life. Students will have two weekly one-on-one sessions and daily group sessions. They will be involved in substance abuse recovery meetings. The girls on campus have daily access to counselors, mentors, and school leadership. Upon enrollment, each student joins a team, which consists of a licensed therapist, academic advisor, and nine other students. This approach enables students to share in leadership and service roles and build long-lasting friendships. Groups are part of the daily schedule and help to resolve issues including: body image, addiction, peer influence, family relationships, as well as school concerns.

The Clearing
A key component of the therapeutic model is the Clearing, which embodies the essence of Henry David Thoreau’s experience at Walden Pond. A place of refuge away from the lively demands of campus life, here residents seek introspection and learning through the power of inquiry and dialogue. Students engage in experiences and discussions centered around the deepest questions of life, such as who am I, why do I exist, is there something greater than me, where does meaning come from and what is the nature of relationships. Likewise, they will learn how other cultures virtuously answer these questions. By practicing and understanding these paramount issues, the girls are more competent in making positive and meaningful choices.

Girls will have the opportunity to interact therapeutically with an array of falcons. Participants will have greater appreciation and clarity for the role consequences play in their lives, both positive and negative. The connection between bird and handler also introduces a greater attentiveness and sensitivity toward relationships.

Students who exhibit an additional interest in the ancient art of hawking will have the opportunity to participate in Falconer’s Club. Here, girls learn how to train and care for birds of prey and work towards licensure as a falconer.

Facilities and Location
Greenbrier Academy is nestled on 140 acres of open and wooded land bordering the Greenbrier River. The main building is a 38,000 square-foot, Federalist-style, brick structure. Constructed at the turn of the century, the site has gone through an extensive two-year renovation. It is home to some of the administrative offices, the student dorms and lounge, and the dining hall. The Schoolhouse is adjacent to the main building and provides eight classrooms—including a science lab, art room, library and computer lab. The athletic field, counselor building, and other administrative offices compliment the grounds.

Greenbrier Academy is located in Pence Springs, West Virginia, a short distance from Lewisburg. Lewisburg was recently voted as one of the "1,000 Places in the United States and Canada to Visit Before You Die"; among its charms are an active artist community with a professional, year-round theatre, Carnegie Hall (an active arts and education center donated by Andrew Carnegie), the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine, and the Greenbrier Valley Community College. The world-renowned Greenbrier Resort is just minutes away. For more information, please visit

Visitors to Greenbrier Academy can fly in to Lewisburg, WV (30 minutes); Roanoke, VA (2 hours); and/or Charleston, WV (2.5 hours). The campus is conveniently located near I-64, affording an easy commute from Baltimore (4.5 hours); Charlotte, NC (4.5 hours); Columbus, OH (5 hours); Washington, DC (4 hours); or Richmond, VA (3.5 hours).

Our residents are not just individuals, but members of a caring and committed family-one that continues to grow and evolve. Greenbrier Academy has thoughtfully designed Family Programs to facilitate that growth and evolution. Several times a year, families visit the campus and participate in focused workshops that build trusting and supportive relationships. Whether meeting one-on-one with counselors or collaborating as a larger group, families learn how to heal and renew. They also spend time together building lasting memories by engaging in some of the nearby adventure activities, cultural events, and natural beauty of the area.

Greenbrier Academy’s therapeutic philosophy is grounded in the premise that relationship is the most fundamental element of life. Our relationships to other people, the world, and ourselves define and enlighten us. Our students are not just individuals—they are daughters, sisters, friends, perhaps future mothers, teachers, mentors, leaders, scientists and advocates of worthy causes. These roles are based on our understanding of relationships with others and require an accepting relationship with ourselves. As we identify and break down old patterns in our lives, we are able to create more positive relationships and therefore make more life affirming choices. Greenbrier Academy empowers students to recognize patterns in their lives and make choices resulting in fuller, more satisfying experiences.

Our Mission
Greenbrier Academy is a young women's boarding, college preparatory school committed to experiential education and transformative therapeutics embracing virtuous relationships, personal excellence, and emotional breakthroughs that will inspire altruistic life missions for girls and their families.

Clarke Loans Shawna Clarke

Therapeutic Boarding Schools

304 445 7790

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