The Governor's Academy (formerly Governor Dummer Academy) - Review #6

Read more details about The Governor's Academy (formerly Governor Dummer Academy) on their 2024 profile page.
The Governor's Academy (formerly Governor Dummer Academy)

About the Author:

Years Attended Boarding School:
Sports and Activities:
Student Government- President of the Student Body Orchestra Chorus Soccer Track Outdoor Program Peer Advisor Chapel Committee Theater
College Enrolled:
Connecticut College
Home Town, State:
Byfield, MA

Reflections and Advice:

1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
GDA had such a wonderful balance between innovative educational methods and traditional basic training. On any single day, I could have been conjugating french verbs or discussing the merits of post-modern relativism. Needless to say, the faculty demonstrated not only devotion to the material they taught, but also to the engaged and motivated student body.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
Being elected as the President of the Student Body afforded me great responsibility and maturity. The process was tough and demanding, but I got to know the student body and the faculty members, making me a competent, reliable young adult. The responsibility I had in that position really prepared me for the amount of responsibility I would require to portray in college.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
My advice would be "never take GDA for granted." Four years can seem like forever, especially to a fourteen year old where four years at the time is forever. But graduation comes very quickly and soon you will be saying goodbye to the friends that will forever influence your life. Take advantage of the clubs, organizations, music ensembles, sporting teams and everything you love because when it goes, its gone, and regret is something one should never have, and rarely does have, leaving GDA.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
There really is no one thing I loved most about GDA. GDA is in itself an entity I cherish dearly and something to which I will compare all organizations I am associated with.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
If in fact you are sleepy and you have a lot of work, DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES sit in one of the chairs in the library. They will put any peppy, coffee-filled student to sleep in five minutes fast because they are unbelievably comfortable.


1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
The academics were very challenging, but certainly to the students' benefit. The classes consisted of intelligent, thoughtful students who pushed each other to greater depth and intellectual curiosity. Coming out of the program, not only are students equipped with the essential tools in mathematics or writing, but are also taught to think creatively, independently, and analytically about difficult problems. The teachers were available to student inquiry and open to alternate forms of discussion. If a student does not know how to budget one's time, he or she will certainly learn it at GDA. In essence, this is a difficult but rewarding academic program.


1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
While my participation in the athletic program was limited, I feel as though I can speak of it to some degree. I participated in the outdoor program for two years, and went on kayaking, hiking, camping, and rock climbing excursions. The lessons were invaluable and rewarding. As for the program as a whole, it underwent a major structural renovation upon my graduation. I sat on the committee to suggest improvements that included both faculty members and students.

Art, Music, and Theatre:

1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
I was very committed to the performing arts at GDA. It was such a wonderful experience to perform in the brand new performing arts center in the heart of the campus. It is a beautiful space and I recommend any student in the performing arts to strongly consider GDA for not only the dedicated staff but also the wide variety of special performances that grace the new stage. Some of my fondest memories of high school happened in that building on that stage!

Extracurricular Opportunities:

1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
The requirement of extracurricular involvement made the school thrive outside of the classroom. Whether on stage, on the field, or through the volunteer opportunities, there is plenty to do and always someone there to do it.

Dorm Life:

1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
I was a day student and commuted to campus each day.


1.) Describe the dining arrangements at your school.
There was always options at GDA. If you wanted salad, go for the great salad bar. Always hot food, always fresh, and always served as a buffet. I ate all three meals there, as a day student, saving my parents lots of money in food bills.

Social and Town Life:

1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
GDA is in a small rural area right along the Parker River salt marsh. Very beautiful and very quaint. However, it was only 15 minutes from the city of Newburyport and 45 minutes from Boston, offering excitement and fun if I wanted to go with friends off campus.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
As a new student my sophomore year, I was very nervous about making new friends. However, I found out very quickly that all the students were really excited about the new students and made them feel very comfortable very quickly. I had no problems making friends and fitting in at the social life at GDA.

Daily Schedule:

7:00 AM
7:45 AM
Morning meeting
8:00 AM
11:45 AM
Orchestra and Chorus
1:15 PM
3:30 PM
Afternoon Activity
5:30 PM
6:30 PM
10:00 PM
Go Home
9:00 AM
10:00 AM
Practice or rehearsal
12:00 AM
1:00 PM
Practice or rehearsal
5:00 PM
7:00 AM
Concert, play, or field trip
Read more details about The Governor's Academy (formerly Governor Dummer Academy) on their 2024 profile page.

Alumni Reviews Review School

The GovernorĀ“s Academy was known as Governor Dummer Academy when I applied, and it was still known that way for part of my time as a student there. As such, my classmates and I. . .
One of the main things is that it has a block schedule, which makes it more like a college schedule while you are still in high school. Instead of having. . .
The Governor's Academy (formerly Governor Dummer Academy) Alumni #3
Class of 2006
5.00 8/10/2006
Allegheny College
GDA has many unique experiences to offer its students. However, I would say that the best thing about this small school is the people. In the dorms you not only live with your classmates, but. . .
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Quick Stats (2024)

  • Enrollment: 415 students
  • Yearly Tuition (Boarding Students): $72,900
  • Yearly Tuition (Day Students): $58,025
  • Acceptance rate: 23%
  • Average class size: 11 students
  • Application Deadline: Jan. 31
  • Source: Verified school update