West Nottingham Academy - Review #8
About the Author:
|Years Attended Boarding School:||1983-1985|
|Sports and Activities:||I was involved in the canteen club, various booster and fund raising activities, the student disciplinary counsel, as well as varsity soccer (captain) and basketball.|
|College Enrolled:||Salisbury University|
|Home Town, State:||Wayside NJ, NJ|
1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
The community and the personal elements are the most relevant experiences at WNA. The entire community is on campus, living, working, learning in a nurturing and personal environment. if it wasn't for the teachers that simply cared to be teachers, to instruct, to inspire and to act as role-models, I wouldn't have achieved so much in my life. The 2.5 years at WNA changed my life.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
I grew up. I became responsible. I learned to make decisions (both good and bad) and I learned that you get out what you put in. at almost 50 years old today, I know for certain, if it wasn't for West Nottingham, its teachers, its community, its structure, its culture - I would not be the person I am today.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
There are freedoms that are given to you away at a boarding school. Don't abuse them. Become aware that they are opportunities to make decisions and make good choices. Many kids don't make good decisions and they opportunity a good boarding school can provide is lost.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
Make good decisions and put in what you expect to get out.
1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
The structure and the personal attention to your success was the most important thing I recall. The student teacher ratio is "world class" and there is no where to hide in a class with 10 students or less. The teacher / professor takes a personal interest in you, the person, the student, the developing young adult. They find ways to break-through whether its in the class, in common areas, in study hall, in extra help, after school, during dinner....whatever it takes - the community of WNA is there to help you reach your highest potential.
1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
The athletics, albeit important, are not the primary driver of the school. There is great "Ram Spirit" across the campus but sports in the community are secondary to the overall academic environment of WNA. I recall our teams being competitive. Sports are a mandatory part of the community. You need to be involved and this is an area that drove engagement with all students. (Mr Spiro was a great basketball coach and demonstrated A LOT of patience with me).
1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
Here is where WNA thrived for me. Music and the Arts were important to me and I was at an age where in a small community, I could explore (without judgement from other kids), areas that were intriguing. I found Maggie Creshkoff's art history and design classes just GREAT! I loved her classes and remember fondly the times learning about so many techniques of watercolor, pen & ink, etc. (I recall during a homecoming a number of years ago, I took my children to WNA, and as we toured the campus, Maggie was there touring and catching up with old friends and students. We found ourselves in the art-classroom that she taught us all in over 20 years earlier with other alumni and their children. AS parent - we now began to share experiences and stories, recalling the great times in Maggies art classes. To our amazement, Maggie was out in front of a dozen little minds, all kids from WNA graduates, pulling out paper, pen & ink, paint brushes, clay, and beginning to do what she loved to do - teach and create. As parents and former students, there were a few tears as we looked at each other and for a brief moment, We recalled our youth at WNA, learning from a great woman who was leading our children down a similar path - a great few hours in a great day at a WNA homecoming).
1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
Dorm life was different and somewhat of a culture shock for me. However, I loved the atmosphere. I was a proctor my second semester jr year and began running study halls throughout my years at WNA. We had structure, yet we had fun, too. We had a great diversity in our dorm and on our floor. Kids from all over the US, some from Japan, Korea, Latin America. They didn't know what dorm life was like, but we all fit in - shared pizza, shared stories. Dorm life was great. (Today the dorms are much different then when we were there.... much more modern than in the early 1980's).
1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
The area surrounding WNA is rural. Its Maryland's rolling valleys and farms that blend into Amish Country.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
I have made life-long friends at WNA. The social bonds you form here are magical and will stay with you for the rest of your life.
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