The Middle Grades Institute (MGI) places student voice at the center of professional development to inform the attitudes and practices of middle level teachers. To that end, we invite students to join the teacher participants for the majority of the week. Some students come from local schools; some are brought by participating teachers; still others are recruited from teams well versed in student-directed practices. Throughout the week, middle grades students act as consultants and experts on issues such as young adolescent needs, classroom and school organization, curriculum development, and assessment. Most students also partake in their own student strand, designed to strengthen their leadership capacities and expose them to post-secondary possibilities.