Head's E-letter Vol XIII issue XIII
Thursday, October 24, 2013
As we proceed through the fall term I wanted to send some news from Suffield. It was great having so many of you here for Parents' Weekend, and our campus routine is in full swing as we look to Thanksgiving.
This is spirit week, highlighted by spirit dress days that include twins day, decade day, wacky-tacky Wednesday, and today's Hollywood day. The spirit week will conclude on Saturday as we compete with Williston Northampton School for the Francis-Kinne Cup. This was named in honor of two long-serving athletic directors at Suffield and Williston—Dennis Kinne and Rick Francis. The Cup goes to the school that wins the majority of the 15 athletic contests between our schools this week.
I had the pleasure of watching Tahj Herring '15 address more than 120 people at the WALKS Scholars luncheon in Hartford earlier this week. WALKS is a consortium of five independent schools (Wesminster, Avon Old Farms, Loomis Chaffee, Kingswood-Oxford, and Suffield). The organization's mission is refreshingly clear and simple: helping provide talented students with access to these five outstanding schools in Greater Hartford. A highlight of the group's annual fundraising efforts is the scholars luncheon, where students from each of the schools share remarks about their experiences. Tahj spoke beautifully about how he learned of Suffield, his transition into our community three years ago, and the life-changing experiences he has had on campus. It was clear to everyone how proud Tahj is of our school and how fortunate we are to have him as part of our talented student body. Haley Leishman '14 was honored at the event as well, as a recipient of the Barnes Service Award. This is presented to students demonstrating exceptional commitment to community service, as Haley has with Saint Francis Hospital and March of Dimes.
Several members of our senior class (led by Denny Smythe '14, Sam Feldman '14, and Stevie Eagan '14) have been planning a school-wide fundraising initiative that will be executed throughout the academic year. A large event will take place during each term, beginning with a color-course paint run this fall. The other events will be a winter telethon of live arts performances and spring game-a-thon. Students nominated several charitable organizations to support with proceeds, and votes yielded a clear choice in Hearts of the Father Outreach, a non-profit that helps orphans and abandoned children. Several Suffield students and faculty members visited one of the Hearts of the Father homes (in Ghana) last summer, and their compelling stories about the impact our contributions can have led to widespread support. You will hear details in the coming days from Denny, Sam, and Stevie about the project and about how you can help with this endeavor.
This is an active period in admissions as students begin the application process for the 2014-2015 academic year. Our admissions staff has been recruiting at schools and fairs throughout the country, and more than 200 families are touring Suffield this month. The majority of this week's guests are currently attending junior boarding schools including Eaglebrook, Indian Mountain, Cardigan Mountain, Rumsey Hall, and Rectory. We are also hosting more than 90 families for our fall Open House on Saturday.
In a similar vein, our seniors and college counselors are closely focused on applications as next month's early action and first-round early decision dates quickly approach. As you have likely seen from our Daily Bulletin, we are also hosting a large number of college admissions officers. Representatives from over 100 colleges and universities have visited campus this month. The fall standardized testing will continue this weekend as many seniors take the ACT in Tisch Field House on Saturday.
Hillary and I have been pleased with the start of the academic year and the school's positive momentum. It is wonderful to see the enthusiasm of our many recent visitors as they get a sense for Suffield's spirit and remarkable beauty. Thank you for your partnership in our work with your daughters and sons.