While all students serve as ambassadors of the Suffield Academy community, tour guide leaders play an integral role in the admissions process. The perspective of a current student is quite important to prospective students and their families, and the tour of campus serves as one of the many highlights of their visit.
The responsibilities of tour guide leaders extend well beyond giving tours. In fact, much of their time is dedicated to training new tour guides, as well as making the appropriate matches between the tour guide and the visiting family. Tour guide leaders must possess effective communication, organizational and time management skills. Through this program, tour guide leaders are able to further develop the skill set learned via the Leadership Program.
The Student Book Club meets 5-6 times a year. Jenny Teich is the student leader for the club this year. The book club meets as a group and chooses the titles and decides when the next meeting will be to discuss the book. The student leader meets with the advisor to discuss issues related to the book and to formulate discussion topics/questions for the book club meeting. The senior leader will also help publicize the book club to the campus, through the use of lunchtime announcements and the conference folder through email. We have pizza and soda at our meetings.
The Chapel Committee partners with the headmaster to assure that the weekly chapel meetings are well organized and useful for the community. The goal of the committee is to help provide meaningful and substantive programming and to prepare the community as effectively as possible for these events. Students assist in planning, coordinating, and implementing a wide range of weekly chapel programs including guest and faculty speakers, student leaders, group discussions, advisor meetings, and cultural festivities. They meet frequently to carry forward a long term project planning calendar, to put together the upcoming programs and make sure all of the details have been covered. The ultimate goal of the committee is to provide programming that helps enhance the experience of Suffield students and faculty.
FOCUS is the Fellowship of Christians in Universities and Schools. It is a diverse community of students, alumni, parents, faculty, clergy and professionals from a variety of Christian denominations drawn together by a common faith and purpose.
The Gay Straight Alliance is a student organization aimed at heightening awareness of different sexualities. The goal is to sustain a safe and comfortable environment for students of all sexual preferences by focusing on continued education and communication on the Suffield Academy campus and the community at large. Students meet regularly to discuss issues in the news and to build strategies to raise awareness about the organization and related issues. We meet once a month in the library writing center.
Suffield Academy's Jewish Organization of Suffield (JOS) aims to provide a community for Jewish students, faculty, and staff on campus. The JOS offers programming both religious, secular, spiritual, cultural, and social as desired by the campus community. In addition, the JOS is an all-campus inclusive group; all campus members are invited to JOS activities. The JOS also provides, as requested, information to the campus about aspects of the Jewish faith.
Suffield has a formal mentor program intended to help all new students with their adjustment to the school. The program is coordinated by one of the school counselors with support from the assistant headmaster and others. There are student mentor leaders whose leadership position centers on helping coordinate and execute this program. They help facilitate social gatherings throughout the school year and organize the new student orientation.
The proctor program serves as an opportunity for students to strengthen their leadership skills and to serve as role models for other students. It is the responsibility of the proctors to play an active role in the residence halls and to utilize all appropriate resources to learn how best to fulfill their roles.
The Student Council of Suffield Academy is a positive, active and constructive voice of the student body. The Student Council will discuss policies and come up with proposals to enhance the student experience on campus as well as discuss major school issues.
Teaching Assistants support the Leadership program faculty in the 9th and 10th grade leadership courses. Any rising junior or senior is eligible to apply to become a teaching assistant in the leadership program, and the TAs will be assigned to work with a specific 9th or 10th grade leadership class. All TAs have experience as students in the classes they teach. TAs are paired with a faculty member, and they work with the same class of students the entire year. Sometimes two TAs work together with the same class. They earn a full academic credit, and also receive a letter grade each term.
Students produce the school newspaper, The Bell. Approximately forty students are involved in planning issues, writing articles, taking photos, and producing art for the paper. Senior leaders (and several juniors) supervise each department and are responsible for overall production.
The Pioneer is Suffield Academy's annual yearbook. It is produced by an interested group of student volunteers under the guidance of a smaller group of senior leaders, one editor-in-chief, and one faculty advisor. We work closely with a representative from Josten's Publishing. While the editor-in-chief is ultimately in charge of delegating jobs and overseeing layout procedures, each of the senior leaders has an assigned portion of the book for which he or she is responsible. Each year these specific roles will vary with the particular interests of the individuals. Subjects which must be covered include: sports photography, clubs and activities, senior pages, underclassmen, faculty, candids, special events, and advertising.
Senior leaders for the Pioneer learn how to organize a group of volunteers, delegate responsibility, make decisions about content and layout, and ultimately oversee the production of a document which will commemorate a year in the life of Suffield Academy. The layout is done online using web-based publications software. In the process they become familiar with Photoshop, learn how to use our digital cameras, and develop a working relationship with the representative from our publishing house.
TREE is a student initiated, student led organization whose primary focus is to educate the school community on issues related to the environment. TREE was instrumental in establishing Suffield's recycling program. Each year the organization sponsors Earth Day. This has included chapel presentations, campus projects and visiting naturalists. TREE conducts annual fund raising activities and works to join other organizations together to accomplish these environmental-focused projects and activities.
The quiz team, also known as Suffield's Varsity Scholars, is a group of students who enjoy trivia about all subjects, both academic and non-academic. In addition to competing in several tournaments a year hosted at colleges like Yale, MIT and UConn, the team also appears each year on WGBY's high school quiz program As Schools Match Wits, competing on television against other area high schools. The quiz team also enjoys an annual rivalry with a team of faculty all-stars. Interested students are welcome to come to meetings at any point throughout the year.