Westminster School - Review #10
About the Author:
|Years Attended Boarding School:||2001-2004|
|Sports and Activities:||Westminster requires that all students participate in three seasons of athletics. The only exceptions are for students who have major roles in school theatrical productions, or who wish to participate in volunteer work for a single term (volunteer exemptions are only available for sixth formers).While a student, I was part of the volleyball, swimming and softball teams and acted as manager to the swim and softball teams my sixth form year due to an injury that prevented me from playing.|
|College Enrolled:||Providence College|
|Home Town, State:||Farmington, CT|
1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
As is the case at most boarding schools, community is top priority at Westminster. Everyone is expected to pull their weight academically, athletically, and socially and to learn to balance their tasks, time and interests on their own. Striking a balance between these things is an incredible task for a teenager, but the expectation is that everyone will rise to the challenge, and in most cases, they do.I've never seen another school or community that operates in quite the same way, and while it may not be the right fit for every student, those who do end up attending Westminster really benefit from its environment.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
At the end of my time there, I felt like I had accomplished something more than just a high school education.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
Being the first of my family to attend a boarding school, I would have talked with other students who had already been through what I was about to experience. It is a completely different high school environment than I ever imagined could have existed and it would have been nice to have an insider's perspective before starting my fourth form year.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
The life lessons it taught me (many of which I'm still learning!)
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
You don't have to like all of the faculty, but you do have to respect them, and it's worth keeping in touch with them after graduation.
1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
I was incredibly well prepared for college after making it through three years of a Westminster education. Though I wasn't in support of such a heavy academic workload at the time, I'm grateful for it now!Time management skills are something that students need to teach themselves and they can only do that through being busy. Westminster's schedule and curriculum forces students to perfect their time management very quickly, and if it is the only thing they learn by the time they graduate, they're still far and beyond most students their age and very well prepared for the college and professional workloads that are to come.
1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
Because Westminster requires that all students participate in three seasons of athletics it was difficult having an injury and still having to fulfill this requirement. Though it is nice to still have a spot on the team as manager and to get to be involved in practices and games, it would probably be more beneficial for the student who is injured if they could take a season or two off to rehabilitate without having to trek around New England going to games and matches they cannot participate in.
1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
I didn't participate much in the art, music or theatre programs, but really enjoyed the poetry symposium that was put on each year. Westminster recently (within the last ten years) started bringing in a famous poet to give a reading on campus and visit classrooms throughout a day or a period of a few days. As I went on to study Literature in college, a few of the poets that had come to Westminster were poets I studied further, and it was a great experience to look back on.
1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
Since most time is spent in class or on the field, other extracurricular involvement is limited. That being said, there was still a fair amount of faculty involvement in community service and they encouraged as many students to get involved as possible. Some of the more popular activities among students involved John Hay Society (giving campus tours and organizing Chapel), the newspaper, and yearbook.
1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
Simsbury is a quaint New England town with a few boutiques and restaurants, but not much within walking distance of school. There are other towns nearby with bigger shopping centers, movies, or outdoor activities, though, which were popular on weekends.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
Everyone was going through the same thing, being that Westminster was different from "normal" high schools, so the community was stronger for it.
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