Fall 2018 Bell

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News New Course Offerings / Suffield’s New Faculty
Editorials Cracking the Dress Code / Summer Academy Teaching Assistants / Summer Jobs
Features New Course Offerings / Brodie Hall & Memorial Building / 2018 Proctor Retreat / Student Council
Creative Corner  Poem: Our Generation
Sports  Preseason and Orientation


New Course Offerings

Article: Sarah Park ’20  |  Photos: Hillary Rockwell Cahn ’88, P’18, ’22

List of 1 frequently asked questions.

  • Each year, the academic course offerings at Suffield are modified to best match the students’ interests and the arrangement of the faculty. This year, there are various new electives and advanced courses that have opened up to upperclassmen students.  » read more

    The courses are as follows:

    Advanced Anatomy & Physiology / Ms. Reed, Mr. Goodwin
    Marine Science / Ms. Norris
    Engineering Problem Solving / Mr. Van Dam
    Biotechnology Honors / Ms. Reed (changed from a term-long course to a year-long course)
    AP Computer Science / Mr. Healy
    AP Physics C: Electricity & Magnetism / Ms. Pouy
    AP Physics C: Mechanism / Ms. Pouy (changed from being available every other to every year due to a wide interest)

    Philosophy Series / Mrs. Strong
    Constitutional Civil and Criminal Law / Mr. Strong

    Advanced Image Making / Mrs. Graham

    The process of deciding on these news courses begins by surveying the students at the end of the year, particularly in science, and by basing the decision on the faculty members’ interests. For example, last year, Mr. Van Dam approached the academic deans with his keen interest in teaching an engineering course which is currently available to students as the engineering problem solving course. Ms. Yeager mentioned that “So far, many students and faculty have been positive about the new courses, especially with marine science, engineering, and the law series.” She continued saying that “Many students were excited when they were introduced to these courses as a new option for them.” Each year, the changes in courses provide students with a wider, more diverse range of options to choose from. Not only does this keep things fresh and interesting, but it also opens opportunities for students to experience a new class that could possibly open their eyes to a future career. From marine science to philosophy and photography, each year, Suffield provides a varied list of courses that promises an engaging new school year.


Suffield’s New Faculty 2018-2019

Article: Mason Kumiega ’21  |  Photo: Hillary Rockwell Cahn ’88, P’18, ’22

List of 1 frequently asked questions.

  • Suffield Academy welcomes seventeen new faculty members this year. Each member comes from interesting backgrounds and possesses unique experiences; therefore, they all have special things to offer our community. There is a year yet ahead, but the future looks very bright with all of the new, well-qualified faculty joining us this year.  » read more

    Ivan Reese (Admissions, Mathematics Department)  Mr. Reese, second from the left in the back row, is coming to Suffield from Bates College in Maine, where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Economics while playing running back for their football team. Originally from Tampa, Florida, Mr. Reese moved frequently throughout his pre-college years, including Texas, Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, and other various cities in Florida. He appreciates the welcoming faculty and student body at Suffield, and is grateful for how genuinely interested people were to meet him. Mr. Reese was willing to take any position offered at Suffield. In addition to teaching math and working in the admissions department, Mr. Reese is a dorm parent in Fuller Hall. He is also coaching football and basketball, as well as helping out with the strength and conditioning program. He wants his students to know that they should remain competitive after Suffield and to compete on a global scale.

    Kevin Van Dam (Mathematics Department, Science Department)  Pictured in the back row, second from the right, Mr. Van Dam grew up in Westboro, Massachusetts, which is within close proximity to the Fay School. He received a degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Suffield’s warm community and supportive faculty were the first things Mr. Van Dam took note of when he came to Suffield for an internship last year, and seeing what went on here made him want to be a part of Suffield’s community. Along with coaching thirds soccer and golf, Mr. Van Dam is teaching math and Engineering and Problem Solving. He personally designed the engineering curriculum with the vision of helping students interested in pursuing engineering to have a class that supported that interest. He believes that his students should be confident in their abilities so that they can appear competent, allowing for new opportunities. Mr. Van Dam is a dorm parent in Spencer Hall, where he lives with his ten-year-old dog, Snickers.
    Neil Stone (Academic Support)  Displayed in the back row, furthest to the right, Mr. Stone received his Undergraduate Degree from Kenyon College in Ohio, and his Master’s Degree from Northwestern University in Illinois. Having grown up in a suburb of Cleveland, a town called Solon, Mr. Stone understands the meaning of the word “struggle.” This has taught him to always remain optimistic for the future and the success it brings. Mr. Stone will be coaching thirds basketball in addition to working in academic support. Suffield appeared to have a sense of community that was vibrant and supportive, which is what made him want to teach here. He believes that his students should trust themselves and trust the process.
    Jennifer Lord (Admissions, Leadership Department)  Mrs. Lord, front row, fourth from the left, grew up locally in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, as well as Easthampton, Massachusetts. She received her Undergraduate and Master’s Degrees from Connecticut State University, and her School Counseling Degree from Central Connecticut State University, respectively. The welcoming campus, rigorous curriculum, and spirit of community all attracted Mrs. Lord to Suffield. She is co-teaching a leadership class with Mr. Atkins, as well as fulfilling a role in the Admissions Department. She believes all of Suffield’s students should remember and use their personal strengths, be true to themselves, and use the knowledge gained at Suffield in the world beyond their high school years. Mrs. Lord resides in Suffield with her two children, Will and Addison.
    Anu Rawlings (English Department, ESL)  Ms. Rawlings, pictured in the first row, second from the right, grew up in a small beach town known as Kennebunk, Maine. She recently received her Undergraduate Degree from Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, where she double majored in English Literature and Secondary Education. Ms. Rawlings was first introduced to the preparatory school environment last year when she did an internship at the New Hampton School in New Hampshire for two weeks. This is where she fell in love with the environment of private schools, especially being able to work with students in and out of the classroom. She loved Suffield specifically because of the community atmosphere, kind people, and how the school perceives discipline: as an opportunity for students to be disciplined thoughtfully for the sake of learning their mistakes, rather than being punished harshly. The most important piece of advice she wants her students to know is to not be afraid to ask for help because it is very easy to get caught up in the idea of feeling that you must know everything when you do not. Ms. Rawlings is coaching girls’ water polo and swimming, and she also is teaching English and ESL.
    Gina Longo (Assistant Athletic Trainer, Leadership Department)  Suffield’s athletes know her as Trainer Gina in the training room, and while she is not new to Suffield’s community, she is new to the Leadership Department, where she is referred to as Ms. Longo. Ms. Longo, featured front row, sixth from the left, grew up in South Plainfield, New Jersey. She attended Springfield college for her Bachelor’s Degree, as well as Northeastern University for her Master’s Degree in Leadership and Strategic Health Management. When at Springfield College, she did an internship at Suffield in the training room where she works today. During her internship, she was attracted to Suffield because she liked the fact that she could see athletes not only in the training room, but also in the classroom and at social activities. She wants her students to take on new opportunities after Suffield and to be willing to expand their comfort zone. Ms. Longo takes time out of her busy schedule to get up early and be in the gym at five o’clock every morning. She is a dorm parent in Montgomery where she lives with her cat, Luna.

    Tory Fitzgerald (Academic Support)  Ms. Fitzgerald, featured in the center of the back row, grew up in Holliston, Massachusetts. She attended boarding school in New Hampshire, and received her Psychology Degree from Bates College where she minored in Education. Ms. Fitzgerald wanted to teach at a New England boarding school, having attended one, and Suffield also offered certain coaching spots that she was interested in fulfilling. Ms. Fitzgerald currently works in Academic Support, and she also coaches field hockey and softball. She believes all Suffield students should advocate for themselves, as it is very important in college and the real world to find the help you need in order to succeed.
    Aphra Benitz ’13 (Science Department)  A Suffield alumna, Ms. Benitz, front row, fourth from the right, is teaching in Suffield’s science department. She is a graduate from the University of British Columbia, and has her Bachelor’s Degree of Science in Natural Resource Conservations with a Specialization in Global Policy. Ms. Benitz was born in Toronto, but grew up in Florida. She has a passion for biology. When she was offered the position of teaching biology at Suffield, she was excited for this new opportunity, so she took it. So far, she is very happy and loves working here. Ms. Benitz wants her students to remember that their time at Suffield is precious, and that they shouldn’t worry about university or getting accepted to university, as they will go to a good college. Ms. Benitz enjoys rock climbing and hiking, and is helping out with SOLO and JV girls squash. She is also a dorm associate in Nathena Fuller and Barnes.
    Matt Mercure (History Department)  Originally from Westfield, MA, Mr. Mercure, front row, furthest right, attended Westfield State University for his Bachelor’s Degree in History. Mr. Mercure previously worked in Suffield’s library as well as the Summer Academy, which is how he was exposed to the attitude of Suffield’s faculty and students, and how great the people of Suffield are. He wants his students to remember that they shouldn’t sweat the small stuff. Mr. Mercure is teaching in the History department, as well as coaching boys JV soccer and crew. He is also a dorm parent in Spencer. Mr. Mercure takes pride in the fact that he has been volunteering with the Special Olympics in Massachusetts for the past thirteen years.
    Brittney D’Oleo ’14 (Mathematics Department)  Ms. D’Oleo, a graduate of Suffield, is coming to Suffield from The University of Richmond, where she double-majored in math and physics and earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Science. She, pictured in the front row, furthest left, originally grew up in Forest Hill, New Jersey, which is within close proximity to Newark. During her time at Suffield, Ms. D’Oleo became very close with Mrs. Warren. She continued to visit her often after she had graduated, and even though she had job offers elsewhere, she decided to come back to teach at Suffield after being offered a position. She loves how Suffield has a strong sense of community, and appreciates how we are conscious about our environmental footprint. Ms. D’Oleo is coaching girls’ volleyball and basketball. She believes her students should keep learning, growing, and remember to be open-minded. As they move on, she hopes they recall the community values that they learned at Suffield. Ms. D’Oleo is a dorm parent in Kotchen, where she lives with her four-pound, fully grown toy Yorkie.
    Taylor Coats (English Department)  Mr. Coats, shown in the back row, furthest left, is originally from Austin, Texas, but spent time in Saudi Arabia growing up because his father had a job in the oil industry. He attended boarding school in New Jersey before attending the University of Southern California for his Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy. He was looking for a position to be a rowing coach, which Suffield had open. He was making a transition from medicine at the time and was interested in teaching, but he did not want to teach science, having done so in the past. When he was offered a position in the English department, he took it. He is coaching crew training in the winter, as well as crew in the spring. A dorm parent in Samii, he wants his students to know that they should not be afraid to change their minds and should be open and flexible in making decisions. His wife, Nikki, spends half of the week in New York, where she is attending college for a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. The Coats have a Pitbull mix named Mia.
    Amy Norris (Science Department)  Ms. Norris, pictured in the front row, third from the left, was originally from Oklahoma, but spent most of her childhood in Hudson, MA. She attended Roger Williams University for her Undergraduate Degree in Marine Biology and Sonoma State University for her Master’s Degree in Science. She came to Suffield because of how flexible it was for families with young children, and because it seemed a good fit for her current career needs. She wants her science students to remember that they should live in the present and find what makes them happy. Ms. Norris previously worked with elephant seals. Her husband, Mr. Johnson, is helping with stage crew. Ms. Norris is a dorm parent in Montgomery, where she lives with Mr. Johnson, her son, Leif; and two cats.

    Lindsey Fava (Library)  Mrs. Fava, displayed in the front row, third from the right, is originally from Windham, New Jersey. She graduated from Northeastern University with a degree in Psychology and a graduate degree in Criminology. While this is her first year as a member of Suffield’s faculty, she has lived on campus for the past year with her husband, Mr. Fava, who works in college counseling. In that time she saw how welcoming Suffield and wanted to be a part of the experience. Suffield also had more flexibility than her previous position, which made it a great option. She believes it is important that Suffield's students should put themselves out there, get involved, meet new people, and learn about others. In addition to working in the library, Mrs. Fava is the dorm head in Tompkins, where she lives with Mr. Fava and her dog, Harper.
    Joyce Bolaños (Language Department)  Señora Bolanos, originally from Peru, is pictured in the front row, fifth from the right. She attended Muhlenberg College for two years, as well as Universidad Interamericana in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where she majored in Political Science and minored in Marketing. Señora Bolanos was introduced to Suffield’s community last year as a substitute teacher. She appreciated how kind people were and how students were eager to learn. Señora Bolanos teaches Spanish and is interested in starting a fencing club at Suffield. She has a passion for fencing and has participated in the sport since she was very young. ­Señora Bolanos is n the Publicity and Promotion Committee of the FIE (International Fencing Federation). She works to help plan fencing at the Olympics, and is currently assisting in curating the plans for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. She is sent to fencing World Cups and other events to ensure that there is no doping or steroid use. Last year, she traveled to Guatemala, Costa Rica, and El Salvador to perform these tests. She continues to fence competitively in the “veterans” category, and she trains three times a week at Prite Fencing Academy in Broadbrook, Connecticut. She lives in Enfield with her husband, where they have a thirty-acre garlic farm. She is traveling to Paris this December for the FIE.
    Rachel Lloyd (English Department)  Ms. Lloyd, front row, fifth from the left, is originally from Agawam, Massachusetts. She attended the University of Massachusetts Amherst for her Bachelor’s degree in English. Ms. Lloyd appreciates Suffield’s strong sense of community and the high value placed on academics, which is what made her want to teach here. The location was also convenient for her. Ms. Lloyd is coaching j.v. girls’ soccer, as well as girls’ varsity tennis in addition to being a dorm parent in Tompkins. She wants her students to remember that they shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help when they need it and to use all available resources.

    Phil Hodosy (History Department) 
    Mr. Hodosy, originally from Watertown, New York, is pictured in the front row, second from the left. He attended St. Lawrence College for his Bachelor of Arts in Global Studies. He first noticed Suffield’s sense of community and unified culture. Mr. Hodosy also appreciated how the school was big enough that it had plenty of diversity, but small enough so that everyone knew each other. He is coaching crew in the spring, and is currently teaching in the history department. He believes his students should acknowledge that they will have difficult times in life, but if they work hard and put forth effort, they will succeed. In addition, he believes that work ethic and commitment are important in order to attain success. Mr. Hodosy is currently a dorm parent in Rockwell, where he lives with his five-year-old springer-spaniel named Lexi.

    Liz Kelly (Language Department)  Ms. Kelly is originally from Lakeville, Connecticut. Displayed in the front row, sixth from the right, Ms. Kelly attended Gettysburg College for her undergraduate degree in Spanish and Business and Middlebury College for her master’s degree in Spanish. Ms. Kelly had heard a lot about the community and the mission of Suffield, she and was excited to come and visit the campus. When she arrived here, she knew this is the place where she wanted to work. Ms. Kelly is currently coaching girls’ JV soccer, and she also teaches Spanish and ESL. Her students, she believes, should remember to treat people kindly and with respect because the most important value is being kind to others. Ms. Kelly is a dorm parent in Rockwell, where she lives with Mr. Hodosy and her five-year-old springer-spaniel named Lexi.


Summer Academy Teacher Assistants

Article: Jenna Daly ’19  |  Photos: Hannah Arthur ’17

List of 1 frequently asked questions.

  • When school is released for the summer, most students push school into the back of their minds and forget about the hectic exams and essays. A select few, however, dedicate those much-needed days off to assist at Summer Academy. For five weeks, these students become a part of the community again and participate in the running of classes, activities, and sports. Edwin Wallis ’16 taught computer-science, Amelia Hern ’17 assisted both Mr. Pepoli in Public Speaking and Mr. Zanussi in Intensive Biology, and Sarah Pajouh ’17 became involved with Creative Writing, Sculpting, and Art Portfolio Creation. These students played a key role in the learning environment for the students.  » read more

    For three summers, Edwin Wallis has been a part of Summer Academy. His first two years he assisted in ESL classes for students who were joining the Suffield community in the fall. This past summer, he was able to teach his own computer science class, an experience which he found “awesome and exciting.” During his time in the classroom, he developed a stronger understanding of different teaching methods and styles to meet the needs of various students. He explained that he bonded with the students inside as well as outside the classroom. The students “feel less pressure to ask questions” and he gets to hang out with them after class. He mentioned one TA and a student met in Turkey after getting to know each other at Summer Academy. After being a student, it was “weird but cool” for Edwin to receive a key to Tisch or Brewster and see how the school is run.

    Amelia decided to TA after seeing her friends enjoy the experience and Mrs. Nahmens highly recommended the program. For the kids, the additional help is important, especially coming from people closer to the students’ ages. Amelia felt that kids “are more comfortable with TA’s and feel they are more approachable.” Since the students spend so much time with the TA’s, they bond quickly. Amelia reflected how lucky the students are to have a place like Suffield Academy and the amazing opportunities available to them. Despite spending some nights at home due to her own summer classes, Amelia became closer with students when she stayed overnight in the dorms. She advises others interested in being a TA that being available is key. She adds that a TA is “a liaison between teachers and students.” Her favorite part of the summer was being back at Suffield, and she noted it was “really special to be back in a different role.” A highlight of Summer Academy for Amelia was the talent show and a dance routine to a k-pop song.

    When looking for a job, Sarah heard a friend raving about her awesome TA involvement at Summer Academy. Once she began the job, Sarah found that she got to know all the students, some more than others. This happened because the TA’s were “the foundation of the experience for the students.” They planned activities, hung out with students outside of class, and kept the energy very positive and exciting. While she agrees her job is a lot of fun, Sarah thinks that people should know what they are signing up for when becoming TA’s. Sometimes, she had to teach a class if the teacher could not make it, which was “daunting,” but taught her how keep her lessons peppy to keep kids interested. One of the funnier times during Summer Academy for her was when the TA’s asked all the students if water was wet, since they had been debating the issue for 30 minutes prior. When asked if they came to a conclusion, her response was, “of course not.” Looking back, Sarah is glad she decided to TA and appreciates the many strong friendships that were created during this remarkable experience.

    Described as “a classic American boarding experience” by all three, Summer Academy brought Edwin, Amelia, and Sarah back to the campus that was their home for four years. This time, they were able to make the experience memorable for younger students and provide a fun community that all students felt comfortable in. All three were happy they participated this summer and will most likely look into returning next summer.


Summer Jobs

Article: Michaela Domino ’20

List of 1 frequently asked questions.


Cracking the Code: A Review on New Student Dress Code

Article: Erin Hayes ’19  |  Photo: Hillary Rockwell Cahn ’88, P’18, ’22

List of 1 frequently asked questions.


2018 Proctor Retreat

Article: Nicole Lee ’19  |  Photos: Audrey Arthur ’19

On August 30, proctors moved in a couple days earlier than the rest of the school. After a busy afternoon of unpacking and meetings, proctors left for a proctor retreat the following day. In the past years, it has been the tradition for proctors to move in a few days earlier and embark on a two-day trip to Camp Becket for leadership training.

However, due to the changed schedule this year, the trip was shortened to one day and the location was changed to the Deerfield River. Upon their arrival at Crab Apple White Water Rafting, proctors met the staff and received essential equipment. After several safety instruction lectures, they finally got on their boats and rafted down the river for two hours.
The main purpose of this retreat was for proctors to get to know each other better and learn various leadership skills during their time on their boats. As they rafted across the river, they were able to experience the significance of teamwork and collaboration while establishing stronger bonds with their peers. Proctors responded to the activities with excitement and joy. Kari Vinje ’19 said, “Rafting was a lot of fun, and we got to know each other better through the challenges on the river.” Deke Kemper ’19 added, “through the journey with my peers, I got to see what leadership meant, and it was also a fun activity to conclude my summer as we prepare to return to our busy school routine”. This trip was undoubtedly a valuable chance for the proctors to think about the atmosphere that they wanted to create in their dorms and become true leaders of Suffield Academy.


Brodie Hall and Memorial Building

Article: Nicole St. Jacques ’20
Photos: Audrey Arthur ’19, Nicole St. Jacques ’20, Hillary Rockwell Cahn ’88, P’18, ’22

List of 1 frequently asked questions.


New Student Council

Article & Photo: Ari Shah ’20

List of 1 frequently asked questions.

  • Each year, Suffield Academy students elect a new group of leaders they believe will properly represent our community and needs. For the 2018–19 school year Becca Bauer ’19 and Jason Choi ’19 are leading Student Council as a president and a vice president.  » read more

    Both Jason and Becca are ambitious leaders who are trying to bring changes to Suffield. Becca said, “I want to focus more locally for our charity, and hold more school events that aren’t fundraisers—just for fun—to further build our sense of community.” In response to Becca’s plan, Jason added, “We want to try our best to have student council meetings that are efficient, fun, and are open to all students.”

    Jason and Becca further outlined their goals. During the interview, Becca stated, “before anything, I just want to say that Mike and Sarah did a great job all around, especially at staying organized. My goals for this year include keeping people involved, having people show up consistently to meetings.” Jason identified his goals to be prevention of food waste through collaboration with Blaire McGavin’s compost club and extension of wifi usage each night.

    The leaders both agreed that Telethon and charity vote are what they are most excited about. They also agreed that the best part of being a part of student government has been being able to work with other student leaders such as Jonathan Walker ’19 and Mia D’Angelo ’19 to represent the rest of the student body.

    Jason and Becca have been wanting to be a part of student council since their first year at Suffield. Jason with his previous experience and Becca with motivation from formal student body president were seeking for ways to change Suffield and return what they have received throughout their years at Suffield. They both thought being involved in student government was one of the most impactful ways to initiate changes.

    As the interview wrapped up, Becca added, “I don’t want everyone to think that just because I’m the president I’m perfect. I have the messiest room in the world. You can’t see the floor!”

    Student Council this year is ready to get things going. All the members have lots of great ideas and are excited to share them all with Suffield students. Becca and Jason would love to see all the students come out on Tuesdays at 6:15 in the sports lounge for their weekly meetings.


Fall Term Gets Underway

Article & Photo: Gabriella Tosone ’20

List of 1 frequently asked questions.

  • The fall at Suffield Academy is an exciting time for trying new things, meeting new people, and having new experiences for both students and faculty members. Mrs. Krasemann is one particular faculty member who is juggling new experiences already.  » read more

    She is now in charge of curriculum development, and I decided to feature Mrs. Krasemann to get more information about her new title. She explains that a big part of her new job is “helping teachers with professional development” and helping “teachers become and be better teachers.” She further explains that in order to execute this part of her job, she sends articles and other news sources about topics that are relevant to each teacher to help them further their abilities as an educator. In addition, she plans on running a faculty book club, faculty podcast club, and article club. Soon, she expects to start observing faculty and offer “nonjudgmental and hopefully helpful feedback on their classes.” Mrs. Krasemann clearly has a deep passion for her new job already and cares about the well-being of the faculty and students at Suffield and wants the quality of learning to be the very best it can be. She reminds the community that she is “not an evaluative role,” and that she is “here to assist and facilitate good teaching” and therefore, good learning. Mrs. Krasemann is also going to help with the faculty meeting planning from the professional development point of view. Her first meeting plan is scheduled for October 8, and she says the teachers, herself included, will be learning about “neat technology hacks that augment learning.” Mrs. Krasemann’s love for the Suffield community is shown through her ambitious yet beneficial goals for the year and for her new position.

Creative Corner

Our Generation

Poem & Photo: Julie Raporte ’20

We are Strong,
others may think otherwise.
consumed by counterfeit world
distracting us from the pain.
yet the distractions provide more hate
constantly criticized
words hurt.
but we are strong.
Defined by violence,
but we are strong.
We have so much love to give
and so many dreams to bring into existence.
I hope we are strong.
Stronger than yesterday.


Preseason and Orientation

Article: Emma Winiarski ’21  |  Photos: Audrey Arthur ’19

A sunny start marked the beginning of this year’s preseason as new and returning students were welcomed onto campus. Over the course of the last four days, students worked alongside their teammates as they prepared for their upcoming athletic season. While most days ended with a double session of athletics, students got to know each other better through a series of team bonding activities. As practices concluded, new students met their mentors, advisors, and other faculty members at the activities fair. New students were then led to their orientation groups where they were introduced to more of their classmates outside of their athletic teams. During orientation, groups completed a number of team-building exercises where it seemed that students had fun working with their peers. As orientation commenced, students joined for dinner, ice cream, and other social activities, as they looked forward to Tiger Games and the beginning of their classes in the upcoming week.
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