St. Paul's School - Review #1
About the Author:
|Years Attended Boarding School:||1999-2003|
|Sports and Activities:||Missionary Society (Community Service Society): President Admissions Office: Student Admissions Officer, Tour Guide German Club: Co-Head International Society Chinese Society Japanese Society|
|College Enrolled:||Princeton University|
|Home Town, State:||Hong Kong|
1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
All-Boarding School: As everyone is required to live on the St Paul's campus, we can get to know everyone very well. The atmosphere is very close. This is one of the things that make SPS so special unique. Humanities Program: This is essentially the combination of many subjects such as English, History, Art History etc. By studying all these facets of a single period at one time, students are able to grasp ideas across disciplines, and understand a time period as a whole.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
I think the best thing was getting to know the faculty. The SPS faculty are a wonderful group of people and are there because they truly want to teach and be with students. They are always very welcoming. I could discuss anything with the faculty there. Another great thing was joining the community service society. I had not been very active with that previously, but SPS showed me what a great thing volunteering is.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
None. I had the best time ever and could not have asked for a better experience.
4.) What would you never want to change about your school?
5.) What things could be improved about your school?
6.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
I lived in Con 20, so I definitely have Con 20 pride. We have great advisors, I particularly liked Mr. Callahan, Dr. G, Mr. Pacelli. But all of the advisors there are great. The location is superb too, because it's right next to all the academic buildings. (You will see what a great thing this is during winter term). Definitely take a Dr. G course in Biology or Human Physiology. Frau Hornor is also a great German teacher.
1.) What did you like best about your schools academics?
I loved the interactions we had with teachers. They were always available for help. The Humanities program is extremely special and cannot be found in most other boarding schools. Class sizes are also very small. My Japanese class, for example, had 5 students. My largest class had 12. This promotes lots of interaction between teachers and students. There is also the opportunity to do a Topics or an Independent Study Project. If there's a certain subject that you would like to delve into deeper, you can always set up your class and a teacher will guide you in your studies.
2.) What did you like least about the academics in your school?
There are some courses that I would have liked to have taken that were not offered, for example: Psychology, Politics, Economics.
1.) What did you like best about your schools athletics?
In a year, we will have a brand new gym and a swimming pool. Both will be state-of-the-art facilities. Unlike most other schools, our athletic requirement only asks for participation in sports every term in 3rd and 4th form years, 2 terms in 5th form year and 6th form year is not compulsory. This gives students the opportunity to choose whatever they want to do.
2.) What did you like least about the athletics in your school?
When I was there, the gym was not the best looking building around. But this will definitely change as a brand new gym is being built and will be ready next year.
1.) What did you like best about your schools art program?
There is a one year art requirement. I am not much of an art person, so I can't say much, though I thoroughly enjoyed the Piano class that I took. Music classes are all one-on-one.
2.) What did you like least about your schools art program?
Worked well for me.
1.) What did you like most about the extracurricular activities offered at your school?
Lots of variety. I was mainly involved with the community service society and the admissions office. There is now a community service requirement of 10 hours a year. There are lots of organizations through which we can volunteer. I was also involved in many ethnic groups, through which I was able to learn about many other cultures. If you would like to start your own organization, there's funding available and faculty support.
2.) What did you like least about the extracurricular activities offered at your school?
1.) What was the best thing about dorm life in your school?
Our dorms are relatively small, so we got to know everyone in the dorm very very well. There are at least 3 faculty advisors living in each dorm. From 7:30-11pm there is always at least 1 advisor on duty in the common room. Many students will choose to work in the common room and talk to the adviser. There is a lot of bonding within each dorm. Once a week, we also have Residential Life sessions, where as a dorm, we discuss issues such as honesty, responsibility, alcohol, drugs, etc.
2.) What did you like least about dorm life?
1.) What was the best thing about your dining arrangements?
The food is EXCELLENT! Of course, it's no home-cooked meal, but it is very good. There's always lots of variety. For breakfast, there's cereal, made-to-order omelettes, waffle bars, bread, bacon, fruits, etc. For lunch and dinner, there's always a salad and soup bar, dessert bar, and a variety of entrees. We also had seated meal twice a week where we eat together at an assigned table with a faculty member. The table assignments change every 3 weeks. A great way to meet new people.
2.) What did you like least about your dining arrangements?
1.) How welcome did you feel by the other students when you first arrived at the school
Very welcome. It's easy to make friends in your dorm, in class, since the classes are so small, and definitely in clubs and activities.
2.) Describe the level of diversity and integration of students in your school:
There's a lot of diversity at the school, and students integrate with each other.
3.) Describe typical fun activities you did on a weekend:
Rectory open house: there's always food served at these. It's a time when students can hang out in the headmaster's home, play some games, drink cider and eat poppy seed cake. Lots of fun, I definately recommend this! Dance: There's almost always a dance going on each weekend with different themes. Food: Many ethnic groups will choose to host a weekend where they bring in, or prepare food from their culture.
4.) What was the town like?
The town of Concord is not exactly the most exciting. But there's enough stuff to do. Movies, cafes, bookstores, shops. We have it all. But many students choose to stay on campus during weekends, because there's so much going on during weekends.
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