The Cambridge School of Weston - Review #11
About the Author:
|College Enrolled||Vassar College|
|Home Town, State||Paris|
|Years Attended Boarding School||4|
|Activities During Boarding School||As a CSW boarding student, I was a member of the Aleph dorm amelioration Committee and the Dorm Judicial Board. I was also a member of the soccer (JV captain 2 years), basketball (JV captain 2 years), and ultimate frisbee teams.|
1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
The thing that truly sets CSW apart from other schools is the importance given to the development of creative and critical thinking. The discussion-based class structure and encouragements to constantly question knowledge rather than rote memorization really helped me prepare for and feel at ease in the college class setting. This is particularly true for international students who may come from an educational system which does not encourage class discussion. I've always considered myself to be pragmatic and did not believe in the importance of creative expression. CSW's large offering of art classes allowed me to discover a creative side of myself I didn't know. The interest in photography and the photo-editing skills I acquired in CSW still serve me today both professionally and in terms of personal expression.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
CSW taught me to be a leader and a critical thinker in ways that I could not have achieved in the French school system. I felt truly at ease in the college environment as I was accustomed to its system.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
My only regret is not taking more art classes. I came to CSW with a very specific goal of taking the classes which would best aid me in being admitted to the best colleges. I find in retrospect that many of my most formative and courses were in subjects I was mandated to take (i.e. art and creative writing courses).
4.) What did you like most about your school?
The actual physical location. It's a truly wonderful campus, make sure to explore it fully.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
Aleph dorm is the best dorm, bar none. Don't let anyone else tell you otherwise. Make sure to try out ultimate frisbee if you haven't already.
1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
CSW taught me to write and to think critically. The academic rigor and the wide variety of classes offered allowed me to constantly challenge myself and develop my skills while staying deeply interested in the subject of study.
1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
As a 3 sport athlete CSW's athletic program played a central role in my daily life. I appreciated the sense of camaraderie I shared with my teammates and the opportunities for leadership it provided me. CSW offers a large variety of sports and competes with other private schools. JV and varsity teams ensure all levels of skill are accommodated.
1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
There's no question CSW is a very arts-oriented school. It offers a very wide range of artistic opportunities within a very large number of fields. I was particularly drawn to photo editing and found CSW photo studio to be very well equipped. Teachers were knowledgeable and passionate about their work and the students' creations. CSW holds frequent art shows which attract hundreds of visitors. I was surprised and pleased when I first found out a few visitors were interested in purchasing my photography work.
1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
CSW mandates community service and offers a wide range of extracurricular activities. I was a member of several clubs and usually participated in yearly fundraisers for various charities.
1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
I truly loved the sense of brotherhood fostered in my dorm. I am still in close contact with many of the friends I made in my dorm. I particularly appreciated that students were encouraged to make suggestions and contributions as to how to improve dorm life and that the suggestions were voted on by a panel of students and faculty. Rooms are large and students generally got to become close with their roommates. Upper classmen could choose to live in single rooms. Students usually ended up strongly identifying with their dorm, often organizing inter-dorm competitions. There is no lights out policy and students are given more freedom than most schools.
1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
Life for international students could be described as somewhat insular. I rarely ventured into Weston or nearby Waltham though I often took the train to Boston. I am particularly fond of Boston and its cultural, culinary, and academic offerings.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
The great thing about schools the size of CSW is the fact that everyone gets to know each other. I knew most students and faculty by name and felt comfortable within all social circles. I spent most of my time with my dormmmates and my sport teammates but felt a connection with nearly everyone in the school community. CSW fosters the sense of community by holding weekly town hall sessions in which they keep students and faculty apprised of community news and allow students to voice their opinion on any issue of concern.
|7:00 AM||wake up, wake a few dorm mates up. get ready for class, bfast|
|4:00 PM||Get ready for sports practice|
|6:00 PM||End of practice, dinner with friends and teammates|
|7:00 PM||dorm study time|
|9:00 PM||end of study time, go hang out with other dorm students at the lounge or play video games with dormmates|
|11:00 AM||bed time|
|11:00 AM||wake up, get breakfast/lunch with dormmates|
|1:00 PM||Go to boston or hang out with friends|
|7:00 PM||Go to movies, get dinner|
|10:00 AM||Get back to the dorm, hang out with dorm mates|
|2:00 AM||sleep time|
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Your graduates can do everything on their smartphones with one click. An alumni relations app will allow them to click a gift to their alma mater. More here.
The typical three-month-long summer break gives juniors and seniors a great opportunity to explore a variety of situations and options.
Learning about a school from its website and social media pages is useful as you decide which school to choose. So is hearing what the school's alumni say about their alma mater.