Shattuck-St. Mary's School - Review #2

Read more details about Shattuck-St. Mary's School on their 2020 profile page.
Shattuck-St. Mary's School
5

About the Author:

Years Attended Boarding School: 2008-2012
Sports and Activities:Figure Skating, School Musical, Phone-a-thon.
College Enrolled:Wheaton College
Home Town, State: San Francisco, CA

Reflections and Advice:

1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
I had initially looked into SSM because of the school's ability to combine their strong athletic programs with challenging academics courses. After my first visit to campus, I was in awe of the environment and how friendly everyone was. Once I enrolled, I realized how supportive my teachers and classmates were. What impressed me more was the fact that there were other people on the same boat as me who had come to SSM to pursue their passions in other programs and were just as committed to excel in their interests and academics.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
Since I attended SSM during my formative years of being a teenager, I think the relationships I built in high school ended up being a lot stronger than some relationships from college. I still keep in touch with a lot of old classmates, and it's always great to catch up with them. Since SSM is so diverse, I became friends with so many people from around the world. It is also amazing connecting with other alums who are older or younger than you because you both have the bond of attending SSM. Attending a boarding school also really helped me prepare for college as I learned to be more independent and became better at managing my time.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
I wish I reached out to more people my first few years at SSM as I was pretty shy and didn't really drive outside of my social circle until the second half of my SSM career. For students who are going to boarding school, my advice is to get out of your comfort zone and join clubs and groups because you never know what you're missing out on if you don't try. Everyone is on the same boat and are just as a nervous being in a new environment as you are.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
SSM will always mean a lot to me because it was my home away from home and you can always come back through the arch and be welcomed with open arms. The fact that I have become close with alums that I was not even friends with when we were students goes to show how big that Shattuck bond truly is.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
The entire campus is beautiful as it combines the old buildings with the new almost seamlessly. With the new renovations, I would definitely suggest checking out the sports complex and the Hub, the new student union area where students love to hang out between classes and grab a snack or play a game of pool.

Academics:

1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
The thing I enjoyed most about the academics of SSM was how small the class sizes were. This was very beneficial for me as it helped me stay focused and allowed me to get to know my teachers and classmates better. As a boarding school, the teachers were also usually your dorm parent, so it was nice to be able to ask them questions even after the school day had ended. The school also has the Center for Academic Achievement, which is for students who have learning differences and need individualized help or extra time on tests.

Athletics:

1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
I was a part of one of the Centers of Excellence at SSM which meant that my daily class schedule was designed for me to be able to practice without missing any classes. As part of the Figure Skating program, I was able to skate before and during school while also doing strength and conditioning after school. If I missed a few days of school for competitions, the teachers were very supportive and helped me catch up with the work I missed or prepared me before a competition. The facilities were also great and convenient as it was only a 5-minute walk to the rink from the academic building. The support from other students who would come out to the rink to cheer on their classmates during games or shows made me appreciate and love the SSM community even more as well.

Art, Music, and Theatre:

1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
Although I was busy with school and skating, I was able to join the musical my first year at SSM and made many friends outside of my program. The following years, I went to every play and musical the school put on and was never disappointed with the productions.

Extracurricular Opportunities:

1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
All students were required to participate in an after school activity as well as completing a certain amount of community hours on and off campus. The school set up a lot of opportunities to fulfill these requirements so it was nice to choose something that fit your particular interests.

Dorm Life:

1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
The dorm life at SSM was very enjoyable. I became close with a lot of my neighbors and we would have sleepovers pretty often. It was fun living with other girls your age who could also relate to living away from home and being a little homesick at first. It was helpful that we had study hall every week night which dedicated quiet time to do homework followed by snack in the dining hall downstairs for a social time before signing in for the night.

Dining:

1.) Describe the dining arrangements at your school.
There were a lot of different varieties in the dining hall every night. It was a buffet style set up, and they always had a salad bar and cold cuts if you wanted to make a sandwich. The dining hall has recently been renovated so there is a whole section called the server which focuses more on healthy options and includes a brick oven pizza and stir-fry station so the food is more fresh. They also have an area for students who have food allergies and can special order their meals (ie: gluten-free).

Social and Town Life:

1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
The town of Faribault is very small which means there isn't much to do, but that also means it's safe and keeps you out of trouble. There are a few coffee shops and restaurants that are walking distance which was nice if you wanted to go on a little stroll with friends to hang out. I would say the relationship between Faribault and SSM is pretty good as the school has held events for the town such as the annual Easter Egg Hunt, theater and skating shows, and helping out the community for community service.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
The school was good about keeping the students occupied and entertained, especially on the weekends. There would be trips to Timberwolves games, Mall of America, movie theaters, etc. There would also be on campus activities like bingo, school dances, and even mini competitions among the different classes.
Read more details about Shattuck-St. Mary's School on their 2020 profile page.

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