Oldfields School - Review #3

Oldfields School
5

About the Author:

College Enrolled Dickinson College
Home Town, State (Country) Charlottesville, VA
Years Attended Boarding School 3
Activities During Boarding School Equestrian Team Captain (2 Years) and a travelling rider of "A" rated shows on the East Coast, Field Hockey, Lacrosse, A Capella singing, Model UN, Environmental Club and Yearbook.

Reflections and Advice:

1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
We had many opportunities to get out into our external community, including ones through our curriculum called "May Program". May Program is a two week program that sets out to bring our girls outside of the classroom to explore different countries, ways of life, etc. You must participate in one community service May Program before you graduate, and they allow you to travel the world or just outside in your backyard where you usually wouldn't explore. During my time at Oldfields I traveled down south and followed the Civil Rights trail through Alabama and Mississippi, got to see the French Open and the world's best artwork in Paris, and build houses in New Orleans. I wouldn't have traded those experiences for the world, and they really pushed me to pursue study abroad options while I was in college. Another unique aspect of Oldfields is that they truly take the motto "Each Girls Success" to heart, which definitely separates them from the close competitive schools of the outlying Baltimore area. Each Oldfields faculty member participates equally in the girls that attend the school and that certainly has paid off. Many girls go on to pursue liberal arts degrees, specialized degrees at large state universities or even fantastic careers in the arts through some of the world's best art schools. Each girl is different in their own way, and the faculty understands this at Oldfields. They truly cultivate each girl in her own unique way and that leads to success both inside and out of the classroom.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
I became more independent and became a better version of "me" during my time at Oldfields. Many schools boast a change in their students, I'd like to think I didn't change but rather I improved. I attribute my attitude and who I am today to Oldfields. It is a wonderful place that provides girls with a solid group of friends they will cherish for the rest of their lives and a good sense of who they are in the world. I became a more confident woman because of Oldfields and that reflected in my college years. While my friends were quiet in the back of the classroom during lectures and debates, I proved myself and became a voice rather than a shadow.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
I would not have changed anything about my experience. Everything I learned and took away from Oldfields, I have utilized and perfected in the time after my time there. I am hoping that each girl can look at herself in the mirror and realize her full potential. Oldfields has made me do that, and made me realize my total self worth.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
I loved the friends I made there and the faculty who are still near and dear to my heart. It is a very nurturing and supportive environment with a curriculum that will challenge you. I have never felt that the curriculum was easy or ineffective, it made me look at my texts more thoroughly and see the broader picture. I was able to attribute each one of the texts I read during high school to my lectures in college and for that I became an outstanding student.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
Everyone in the admissions office is incredibly helpful and wonderful to talk to about the admissions process. I encourage anyone who has a remote interest in the school to contact them about visiting or shadowing a student. Oldfields is the best and a hidden gem that many people have never had the luck to explore or see. I strongly urge anyone to visit and see all of the possibilities and wonder it can offer any girl that chooses to walk through its doors.

Academics:

1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
The diversity of the classes and the true dedication the faculty have to the school. I became interested in Women's Issues way before my college peers because of the challenging courses I took in humanities throughout my time at Oldfields that pushed me to think about my world as a woman.

Athletics:

1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
85% of the faculty live on campus, so they would be willing to drive us to external club sports. For example, many girls participate in travelling teams for lacrosse or indoor track, swimming or field hockey. Many of these girls have faculty that coach these teams themselves or want their girls to feel like they can achieve high standards of athletics. The athletic program, along with the rest of the programs at Oldfields, really go above and beyond expectations for achieving success.

Art, Music, and Theatre:

1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
The Visual Arts, Music and Theater Programs are amazing and have fostered some of the most amazing artists throughout Oldfields history. Plenty of Oldfields girls end up going to competitive art schools such as Parsons, Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), and Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). Our dance program features a state of the art program with a newly renovated dance studio open to girls as well as an external dance company which has try-outs at the beginning of every year. The Theater program is incredible with two major productions being featured during the year. "Annie" and "Godspell" were the latest productions put on by the theater department, and the Department Head Kate Briante has an amazing sense and passion for theater which is truly reflected in the high quality productions that are exhibited throughout the year.

Extracurricular Opportunities:

1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
Plenty of exciting and fun activities happen on the weekends. Since we are so close to Washington DC (45 minutes) and Baltimore, we are usually found in those places as well as occasional trips to New York City. The faculty do an amazing job of feeling out what the girls want to do and they really do a great job of organizing the trips for a flawless experience.

Dorm Life:

1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
Each girl is looked at by our Admissions staff (who gets to know each of the girls through the admissions process) and is chosen a roommate in the summertime based on their interests and where they are from. The girls are given no more than one roommate, and after their first year of attending Oldfields they are given the option to then opt for a single. There is a no-delivery food policy for the weekend in the interest of personal monetary funds and dorm housekeeping, so late night food access is available during the weekends if the girls decide to stay on campus. Should there be a problem during the dorm process with roommates, the Residential Life committee is very involved and they take input from each roommate, the dorm liaisons and the dorm prefects which are on a bi-daily rotation throughout the dorm. The dorm prefects and liaisons act as middle-men for the dorm parents and students and help to bring transparency to any problems that could arise.

Dining:

1.) Describe the dining arrangements at your school.
The dining hall offers incredible meals with their food being completely homemade right down to the salad dressings. The school has an on-campus garden that provides a portion of homegrown ingredients to the food offered. The dining hall has a required sit-down dinner every evening and the table assignments rotate bi-weekly so that each girl can meet different people throughout her time at Oldfields.

Social and Town Life:

1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
Sparks-Glencoe is teeming with amazing things to do on weekends. A small town with a big personality, there are places like little quirky coffee spots or fly fishing shops that dot the area around Oldfields. Situated right near the Gunpowder River and NCR running and biking trail, it provides a good outlet for girls to get out into the environment and explore. The closest shopping center, Hunt Valley Town Centre, is a mere 10 minutes away and boasts great dining, shopping and a movie theater. Many of the girls also explore neighboring Baltimore, Maryland which is less than 20 minutes away from Oldfields's campus. I loved to take my horse on foxhunts during the weekend, since Oldfields is situated right in the heart of horse country Maryland.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
That everyone, regardless of "mean girl" stereotypes and fears about all-girls schools, got along. No one was ever left out and many of the girls helped one another when there were issues happening with their friends. I had a family crisis happen during my senior year and I was so eternally grateful for my Oldfields girls during that time and even to this day.

Alumni Reviews
  Review School

  • Review Description
  • Oldfields School Alumni #1
    Class of 2016
    5 Stars   6/1/2017
    connecticut college
    Oldfields is incredibly diverse as well as very supportive while still allowing girls to branch out and be who they want to be they are still supportive. . .
  • Oldfields School Alumni #2
    Class of 2016
    5 Stars   6/12/2017
    Spelman College
    Oldfields School was super unique because of many reasons, but I'll choose 2. The class sizes were extremely small, giving students a large amount of one on one time with the teachers. I think at. . .
  • Oldfields School Alumni #3
    Class of 2010
    5 Stars   5/31/2017
    Dickinson College
    We had many opportunities to get out into our external community, including ones through our curriculum called "May Program". May Program is a two week program that sets out to bring our girls outside of. . .
  • Oldfields School Alumni #4
    Class of 2009
    5 Stars   5/31/2017
    Lake Forest College
    The Family-like community, the availability of faculty, the support all the girls get from school...there are so many unique things that make Oldfields stand out. I checked this website (Boarding School Review) years ago when. . .
  • Oldfields School Alumni #5
    Class of 1999
    5 Stars   5/31/2017
    Sweet Briar College
    I feel the most unique asset that Oldfields offered that I loved dearly was the way that education was presented in the classroom. The teachers were available during and after school hours and invited. . .
  • Show more reviews (2 reviews)
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