Milton Academy - Review #2
About the Author:
|Years Attended Boarding School:||2012-2016|
|Sports and Activities:||-Co-head of Reach to Teach club -Senior editor of The Asian magazine -Senior editor and manager of The Helix magazine -Involvement in three theatre productions -Member of the Speech Team, Asian Society, and International Students' Club -Peer Tutor in Math and Spanish -Orange and Blue Key|
|College Enrolled:||Columbia University|
|Home Town, State:||Hong Kong|
1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
Despite its rigorous education, Milton has a very supportive community. The institution offers a lot of resources for students who need help relating to either personal or academic needs. Students at Milton truly want to help their peers learn and improve; they help each other learn in class or out of class by having group study sessions or by collaborating on study guides.Milton prides itself as a very diverse community that embraces differences. There is a relatively higher percentage of students of color compared to many boarding schools in the New England area. Milton is home to a diverse student body with many different interests and talents.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
I've grown so much here. I’ve become a more informed and open-minded individual. I have overcome my fear of public speaking and have started to engage in class discussions. I no longer care about sounding “stupid” in front of my peers when I ask questions. I’ve also been educating myself on current events and topics that I’m not particularly interested in, and thus have become obsessed with Ted Talks and articles on The Atlantic. As I become increasingly aware of social and political issues, I find myself becoming more interested in opinions that are different from mine—I have begun to engage in civil discourse outside of the classroom with peers. Knowing about my brother’s poor mental health has been a difficult yet beneficial process for me. Every day, I see my perspectives shift bit by bit. Every day, I bring new knowledge and new perspectives to my classes. Every day, I learn something new and make connections between different subject matters.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
Freshmen year, I didn't take part in any extracurricular activities because I was worried that people would judge me. Kids going to boarding school should keep an open mind and try new things because boarding school does have a lot to offer and it would be a loss if one didn't take advantage of the ample opportunities and resources.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
The people. I loved my teachers and my peers at this school. They are my biggest cheerleaders and support me no matter what.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
Visiting or incoming students should definitely check out or request for the dorm-- Millet, if you're female, and Norris, if you're male. These two dorms are the newest dorms on campus and the only dorms on campus that have AC. These two dorms are also the prettiest dorms on campus because they look like actual hotels.Visiting or incoming students should also check out the Snack Bar on campus. It has pretty good snacks and junk food. I especially love their breakfast sandwiches and their crispy tater tots!
1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
As I mentioned before, Milton has a really supportive environment. All my teachers always made sure that everyone understood the material well. They always offered to meet outside of class, be it to explain some math concepts, prepare for the upcoming test, or to give feedback on an essay draft or outline. In class, we had Harkness tables which required a good deal of student participation. I loved how I could learn not only from my teacher, but also from my peers sitting around the table.
1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
Underclassmen are required to participate in all 3 seasons of athletics while upperclassmen are required to participate in only 2 seasons of athletics. We had mandatory PE classes like Project Adventure, Fitness Concepts, and CPR. Since I was not particularly athletic, I opted to join PE classes for a few seasons. At first, I was afraid that it would be a terrible experience. However, I learned to love it because my coach taught me to play a wide variety of different sports like softball, soccer, basketball, tennis, squash, and ultimate frisbee, and I actually made a few of friends in PE class. To fulfil my other seasons of PE requirement, I took RAD-- rape aggression defense and pilates classes. Those classes were a lot of fun and were really useful.
1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
I was an artist at Milton. I took Visual Arts freshmen year, Studio Art sophomore year, Advanced Drawing and Ceramics junior year, and Advanced Independent Drawing senior year. The visual art program at Milton is awesome. I loved the Nesto gallery because it showcases work from students as well as distinguished artists around the world. My art teachers also took us on field trips to art museums in Boston to learn more about artists and about their work. I especially loved my art class senior year. I had the freedom to do a series of self-portrait drawings. My teacher was always really supportive and gave me a lot of helpful criticism and feedback.For music, we have a lot of opportunities, be it in the vocal or instrumental disciplines. We have a jazz group, a capella, Chamber Orchestra, Chamber Singers group, Glee Club, etc. I was in the Chamber Singers. The Chamber Singers have two performances each school year in which we perform mostly classical music and sometimes music arranged by our won conductor himself! During spring break my junior year, the Chamber Singers travelled to Prague for a concert tour. It was a lovely experience filled with lots of food, friends, music and fun.Every season Milton offers at least three on-stage performances. As I mentioned before, I was cast in three theatre productions. My favorite theatre production was Metamorphoses because we built an actual swimming pool on set and it was super cool. In the last scene, all the lights in the theatre were off and nearly our whole cast was in the pool which contained real floating candles. It was an incredibly beautiful scene. After our last show, we also had a great cast party with pizza and lots of dancing.
1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
There are a lot of clubs on campus that you can be a part of. I particularly enjoyed planning and running fundraisers at school through the Reach to Teach club, a club that funds education for underprivileged children locally and internationally. I also enjoyed my community engagement opportunity where I tutored a Chinese immigrant in English.
1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
Milton has eight dorms, four girls and four boys. Every boarder stays in the same dorm all four years. Room set-ups depend on the dorm. Some dorms have single rooms; some dorms have double rooms; some dorms have triple rooms. The room selection process also depends on the dorm. For underclassmen, you're generally assigned to a roommate or none if you have a single. However, upperclassmen usually get to choose their own roommates or at least fill in preferences.I loved dorm life at my school. To be honest, dorm life was probably one of my two favorite things at Milton.Members of each dorm at Milton carry a lot of dorm spirit. We have Spirit Days where we all flash our cool dorm gear. We have inter-dorm dodgeball competitions where we dress in weird costumes together and dodge balls while jamming to music.As a member of the dorm, the other girls in the dorm were like my sisters. And my best friends at Milton were all in my dorm. We would have sleepovers and movie or board game nights in the common room on the weekends. The girls in the dorm were my support system. They've seen me laugh and cry and have had my back all 4 years of my Milton career and will continue to for the rest of my life.
1.) Describe the dining arrangements at your school.
We have 3 dining halls at Milton. Forbes Dining Hall is the main dining hall in the middle of campus where all students have lunch. For dinner, boarders have required sit-down dinner with their own dorms on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 6-6:30pm. I loved sit-down dinner because it was a great time to bond with my dorm sisters and de-stress after a long day of school. The dining hall has a wide range of food options that cater to all vegetarian, vegan needs etc.
1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
The town is a suburban area. Tedeschi's is a 10-minute walk away and East Milton Square is a 25-minute walk away. Students love going to the South Shore Mall or East Milton Square on the weekends via the school shuttles. Since Boston is only a 20-minute drive away without traffic, students also like going to Newbury Street for some shopping or Havard Square for dinner on the weekends.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
Students at Milton are generally really friendly and nice. People hold doors open for you even if you don't know them. Although there is a slight divide between boarding and day students, it is not hard to make friends in either group. During recess, students hang out in the Stu (Student Center) while eating snacks. On Fridays, we blast music on the Stu and we all hang out while reading the Milton Paper (a student-run publication on campus).
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Here are some considerations to ponder whilst choosing schools and when your child is actually away at school.
Do you like large schools or small schools? Are you most comfortable in a city, small town or countryside? Are you interested in attending a school that has a religious or military orientation? Would you like to attend a school that is only for boys or girls? These are some questions you must ask yourself before you begin your search for the right U.S. boarding school for you.
Here then are a dozen boarding schools which charge approximately $20,000 per year or less for tuition, room and board.