Westtown School - Review #34
About the Author:
|Years Attended Boarding School:||1993-1997|
|Sports and Activities:||I taught GED and English as a Second Language to migrant workers close to campus. I was also head president of the Student's Union for Student's of Color. I participated in a few cultural dances. I also had a job at the front desk as a receptionist, I gave tours of the school and helped kitchen with dining duties.|
|College Enrolled:||Brown University|
|Home Town, State:||Bronx, NY|
1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
I had come directly from the South Bronx where classrooms tend to be over crowded and student-teacher interaction is limited. Though unusual at first, it was great to have been in a classroom setting with an average of 5-10 students. The quality of education was significantly enhanced and I was no longer invisible. The support from teachers and other administrators was amazing; as a young Latino I found faculty very understanding and supportive of my own challenges adapting to a new environment. Throughout my years, I became very active in community work and even participated on campus activism. Traveling abroad on two occasions only further enhanced my educational experience at Westtown.
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
Westtown really pushes you to get into a great college, I was accepted to all the schools I applied to, NYU, Brown, Georgetown, Cornell and Fordham University.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
I would have tried more things, taken advantage of music, piano lessons and just appreciate the resources there.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
The best thing about Westtown is its diversity and also how accepting and supportive Quakers are.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
The Belfy, the student hang out spot was fun, the Olympic size swimming pool and the woods are all great assets to Westtown.
1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
I think the greatest thing about the academics was the teachers. It was always amazing to see them holding not only teacher positions but also other duties where we were able to have other relationships with them outside of the classroom, like extra curricular activities, sports, living with us in the dorms. Though I am not Quaker, I really appreciated Quakerism and was able to really identify with the practice. Meeting for worship was an opportunity to sit with ones self and meditate, think, analyze, get in touch with ones thoughts.
1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
It was great to have learned so much about sports; as we were required to be physically active. I was on the swim team for four years, I did a semester of soccer and that was so fun! It wasn't meant to be so challenging as the school has a team that does compete with other schools but was fun at the same time. I did track and field and tried out for the diving team for a bit.
1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
It was great to have attended all the plays put on by students. Everyone has the opportunity to express themselves artistically at Westtown. The resources available are vast; I was able to take advantage of all visual art courses and learn so much about different mediums (silk screen, etching, ceramics, oil/water paint, art history, etc.) Westtown has so much to offer academically. The buildings are all state of the art and this was 10 years ago, I can only imagine how much it has grown.
1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
I did a lot of volunteer work; teaching at a community center, doing volunteer work at retirement homes, the animal shelter, there are so many different volunteer opportunities. I was always involved and even received an award, my name should still be there as the first person to receive an award for community service. I was also a part of a few clubs such as the student's union for people of color and also helped with the Mexican exchange program. I hosted a few different foreign exchange students and made great friends.
1.) Describe the dining arrangements at your school.
The food is so good and so healthy. The dining room is set up with nice clothe on every table, the tables are squared and family style. Because the kitchen staff is cooking real meals from scratch, I always felt I was eating hearty and healthy which is so important for education. We would also have fun dinners for special occasions.
1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
It was always nice to go to Philly for the weekend and get to know city life on your own, going to the malls and also special activities in the town like go-karts.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
The school had people from all over the world and from all over the United States. I think this also contributed so much to my learning experience. I had friends from Korea, Germany, Spain, Bosnia and then from all walks of life in the US. At first it was scary but then you learn to appreciate so many differences.
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