Stoneleigh-Burnham School - Review #14

Read more details about Stoneleigh-Burnham School on their 2019-20 profile page.
Stoneleigh-Burnham School
5

About the Author:

College EnrolledColumbia University
Home Town, State Cathedral City, CA
Years Attended Boarding School3
Activities During Boarding SchoolI was very involved in sports and with out the distraction of boys, didn't worry about how I was perceived when playing hard. I was the captain of the Softball team, a member of the ski club, played right wing on the Field Hockey Team, took all of the Red Cross Levels of Swimming including Advanced Swimmer, was a soprano in the Octet, sang in the Glee Club, and the Hartford Chorale, was a member of the drama club, the service club and the literary society.

Reflections and Advice:

1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
Stoneleigh-Burnham is the result of a merger between to schools: Stoneleigh Prospect Hill and Mary A. Burnham, both schools owned by the Emerson Family. The SBS campus is gorgeous and boasts an incredible horse stable. I attend my class reunions there. I graduated from Mary A. Burnham School 50 years ago, but I still think of those professors who instilled in me a love of learning. At Burnham I began to be differentiated, my own person, learning about gifts and talents I never would have identified in the public school system. I thank my parents everyday for the privilege of prep-school.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
I became my own person! I loved singing and performing with the Octet, at dances and school events. Receiving the Sportsmanship award and the Student Council Citizenship award were surprising moments. The fact that I graduated is probably a miracle, but it is because of my prep school education that I have achieved all that I have achieved. I have three post graduate degrees including a doctorate, have two professions, am a published author, and speak another language fluently. My second grade teacher told me I was dumb, Burnham helped me prove her wrong!
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
I wouldn't have done anything differently, because I had no idea who I was. It was an evolutionary process to becoming me.Don't hit your roommate.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
I loved who I became, the growth of self I experienced, and I loved the camaraderie of my sisters. I loved the singing, the growth in learning, playing sports, and my head mistress's wisdom and forgiveness.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
The campus store is fun. My final words of wisdom are these: If you are given the opportunity to go to prep school, count it a privilege. Very few are given such an incredible gift.

Academics:

1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
I loved English and History. Colonel Mosely was one of my history teachers as well as my English teacher. He taught me to write book reviews using verbs other than the verb "to be" and Mrs. Soffer taught me how to take that flowery writing style and incorporate it with an analytical style. I loved the small classes which allowed us to fully engage with our professors. Mr. Vannah was another one of my history teachers. I will never forget the day he informed us that King Henry the 8th died of a surfeit of peaches. Some things just stick! There were 70 girls in my class and 69 of us went to college, and most of us the college of our choice.

Athletics:

1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
As I said above, when we played sports, we went for broke. We weren't worried about sweating or messing up our make-up, we worked to be good at it. On the softball team I pitched, caught and played first base. We competed with other schools, but mostly we just loved to play the sport. We played against Stoneleigh and came up against a pitcher who was nearly unbeatable. Getting a hit off her was a miracle. I swam most years, and got my Senior Life Saving credential. I played Volleyball and skied in the winter. In the fall I played Field Hockey. Students who had their own horse, kept it at the stables at Stoneleigh. I didn't have a horse.

Art, Music, and Theatre:

1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
We often went to art films with professors. I remember going to see Fellini's 8 and 1/2. I had no clue what was going on. There was a concert series as well. I saw artists who were well known in the day, Odetta, The Chad Mitchell Trio and Donavan. As a member of the drama club I did some acting, but my real interest was singing. I was part of the 8 member a cappella singing group. We chose our own songs to sing and record on our album and 50 years later sing together at reunions.

Extracurricular Opportunities:

1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
There are an even greater variety of extracurricular activities at SBS. Debate, Arts and Dance, broadcasting, film, photography are all areas in which the girls get invest themselves, give expression to their creative gifts and discover strengths they didn't know they had. For me discovering gifts and strengths I didn't know I had, was ever so important to my life, my future and my career. The diversity of extracurricular activities is even greater today than when I was in school.

Dorm Life:

1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
One of the most important things for any individual is to learn how to get along with a diverse group of people in close quarters. My first year at school three of us lived in a room that was really meant to accommodate two comfortably. We did just fine. I lived with these girls 24/7 some 277 days out of the year. I knew them better than I knew my parents. When we get together these 50 years later, we still have a bond of sisterhood hard to describe, to folks who have never had the experience. We stay in the dorms at Stoneleigh for our reunions. The rooms are ample and have their own bathrooms. Yay!!!

Dining:

1.) Describe the dining arrangements at your school.
Seating is family style at round tables, but the breakfast buffet is help-yourself, with a variety of healthy and delicious foods to choose from. The food at reunions is excellent, and the dining room is windowed with a beautiful view, looking out over the ample, lush, green campus.

Social and Town Life:

1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
Greenfield is a small town out in the country, but there are places to buy necessities and dine out. There are some crafty villages and towns not far from Greenfield, with neat shops and excellent dining.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
When I was in school, 50 years ago, the social life was more restrictive. We had dances with boys schools and were paired up with our dates, according to our height. We had what was called "downtown time," twice a week and could go to the movies on Friday or Saturday evening --if I remember correctly. We had mandatory church on Sunday, but I am pretty sure that is not the case these days. The reunions have been fun with music and dancing and let loose time.

Daily Schedule:

Weekday
7:00 AMbreakfast
8:00 AMchapel
9:00 AMclasses
12:00 AMlunch
2:00 PMsports
4:00 PMstudy period
6:00 PMdinner
7:00 PMstudy period
10:00 PMlights out
Weekend
8:00 AMbreakfast
10:00 AMdowntown time or study hall
6:00 PMDinner
7:00 PMFree time or dance
11:00 PMlights out
Read more details about Stoneleigh-Burnham School on their 2019-20 profile page.

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