Westtown School - Review #24
About the Author:
|Years Attended Boarding School:||2007-2011|
|Sports and Activities:||soccer (V captain 2010), basketball, track and field, tour guide (head 2009-2011), philanthropy club, habitat for humanity club, class officer (sophomore year), prefect (senior year), orchestra (4 years).|
|College Enrolled:||University of Delaware|
|Home Town, State:||Cheyney, PA|
1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
Community. The community at Westtown is truly unique and a very special part of the experience. As a student at Westtown for fourteen years, and a boarder for two, I can honestly say that it became my second home. All of the students, faculty, and staff are one large family. Community building exercises are woven throughout the curriculum and everyday life at Westtown. The school focuses on the growth of each student as an individual and the student body as a whole. It is incredible that most of its students remain on campus during the weekends. Even as a student who lived locally, I stayed on campus because it was so much fun, and something very special to experience. Scheduled weekend activities help students get to know their peers better and aid in the growth of the community. Westtown becomes a second family.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
Westtown changes you, in big and small, visible and invisible ways. It is something that is very hard to explain. I found myself at Westtown, I learned who I was and how I wanted to express myself. I left Westtown with a feeling of independence, motivation, confidence and irreplaceable friendships. I will never forget how Westtown helped shape who I am today.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
There is only one thing I would do differently as a boarding student Try to get to know everyone as soon as you can. I would tell incoming students to be ready to experience the most exciting time of their lives. Westtown is the best, make the most of it.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
I loved Westtown for the good and the bad. It was my second home and I still treasure it. The community is something you cannot and will not find elsewhere. Everyone has each others back and the support is incredible.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
Those visiting Westtown should always take a full tour and get to know the campus. I also recommend that you visit while the students are on campus. For incoming students, I would say, make the best of every moment, because you won't get them back. Treasure your time at Westtown, because it is special. Get to know everyone you can, and stay on campus for weekends. Not everything is perfect, but make the best of what you have.
1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
Academics at Westtown, like many other things, are unique. The tables in the classrooms are set up in a circle to promote group discussion. Westtown academics are special in that the students are learning from each other and not just from the teacher. AP classes were removed from the curriculum to better enable teachers to cover material of interest to the students, as well as information that they feel is relevant. Westtown does not teach purely for the test. The learning environment is a positive and supportive one. Westtown has many course options so that students can explore their passions and further their studies in that field. Westtown encourages students to become excited in their work.
1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
Westtown's athletic program does not exclude anyone. Every student is required to take part in the program in one way or another, therefore it is a great opportunity for students to explore different areas and find what best suits them. While the sports are competitive, the school is absolutely focused upon academics. For the students who want a less competitive option, there are opportunities to become involved in a various extracurricular activities and beginner teams. Sports teams become close-knit groups. I loved the feeling of being on a team at Westtown. The coaches support every individual on the team and genuinely care, which make a wonderful environment to learn and compete in. The beautiful facilities make it possible for athletes to reach their highest potential.
1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
The arts program is very diverse, offering sculpture, studio arts, painting, drawing, screen printing, graphic design, print making, and much more. There are school productions every year and many different ways to be a involved in them, whether it be as a cast member, part of the a.v. club, scenic art design team, directing, or stage crew. There are many showcases for the orchestra, choir, band, jazz band, select orchestra, and wind ensemble. Art/music is a requirement for all students at Westtown, but there are so many ways to fulfill the requirement that everyone can find something that they like.
1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
There are so many clubs and different volunteer opportunities at Westtown, I couldn't give an exact number. If there isn't an extra-curricular activity that someone wants to participate in, they are encouraged to start their own. The faculty help support and advise these clubs and organizations so that students truly can have the most beneficial experience.
1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
Dorm life is fabulous and like nothing you can imagine until you are living it. The faculty are like parents and the atmosphere is fun and family oriented. There are dorm parents on every floor, as well as 7 prefects, or 4 proctors (depending on the dorm). The students take the leadership positions of prefect or proctor, and are there as an extra support, friend and authority figure on dorm. The selection process is a lottery system and returning students are allowed to choose their roommates. All rooms are for two people and their are kitchens on every floor.
1.) Describe the dining arrangements at your school.
At Westtown we eat almost every meal family style, which means 8 people to a table. The food is served to your table, but there is also a hot bar, salad bar, sandwich bar and fruit as alternative options. I really loved the family style meals, you could eat with your friends everyday and it was always fun. I also liked that it wasn't really a cafeteria, so you never had to worry about where to sit or who to sit with. It was also nice that there weren't assigned seats. There were almost always different people at your table at every meal. Meals at Westtown weren't just a time to eat, they were a time to socialize and enjoy a break from the busy day.
1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
The campus is in a pretty good location, it is close to Philadelphia and West Chester. It offers wonderful opportunities to go out with other students and faculty on the weekends NYC is also not too far away, so it isn't difficult to take a day trip into the city. Personally I liked that there were places to go that were decently close, but that the campus was quiet and slightly secluded so safety was never an issue.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
Westtown is a family, and being a member of the community is one of the best feelings. When I was there, I knew every student, every faculty member and every member of the staff. I still am connected with my classmates as well as current students. I have never been somewhere as inclusive and welcoming as Westtown. I didn't realize until I graduated just how special life is at Westtown. It is something I wish everyone had the opportunity to experience.
|9:30 PM||free time|
|10:30 PM||on dorm|
|11:00 PM||on dorm|
|1:00 AM||lights out|
Alumni Reviews Review School
- Review Description
- UVA Small Quaker school, tight group, not so much focused on strong academics as much as creating good individuals in society.. . .
- Villanova University Westtown has a beautiful campus. It was beautiful and especially safe to walk around any time of day. Also the style of teaching is very hands on and has small classes, usually with. . .
- Bard College Two aspects of Westtown that stand out in particular are its sense of community, and the education driven towards social change. Its sense of community is in part due to the fact that Westtown is. . .
Several things make boarding school special. The learning, the community, the sports. All these and more.
A private school in its infancy is quite different from the mature community it becomes over time. I wonder what the founders of these five schools would think about them today. I bet they would be very proud of their creations.
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