Who Is The Typical White Mountain School Student?

Amy Snow
Amy Snow introduces four “typical” WMS students. Click the title to read the whole story.
By: Amy Snow

Last spring, I had the chance to work in the Admission Office and I was often asked about the typical White Mountain School student. I always found it challenging to address this question succinctly.  Having a population of about 100 students allows us to know each and every member of the community as an individual so it’s hard to generalize and think of them as “typical” when they each have such unique talents and personalities. Please meet four of our current students and I think you’ll see what I mean!

Abi is from Hopkinton, MA and heard about WMS from a current Trustee who is a friend of her father. Abi has always loved visiting NH to vacation and ski and right away she was intrigued by the idea of attending WMS but at the same time she was apprehensive about leaving her hometown high school for her senior year. Many people comment that they feel right at home the moment they step on campus. This was Abi’s experience and that feeling of comfort has only deepened during the five months she has been here. In the fall, Abi was elected captain of the soccer team and the experience of taking on this leadership role provided inspiration for her college essay. This winter, Abi is following her passion for ski racing and is one of the members of our newly reestablished alpine race team!
Danny is a sophomore and hails from North Bergen, NJ. Whether it’s raising money for Chinese orphans through his leadership of the China Care Club, cooking for a local community meal or dressing as an elf for the re-enactment of the popular children’s book The Polar Express, Danny is always willing to step up and help. He is also a member of the a cappella singing group and has been a valuable member of the Farm and Forest crew and various theater performances. And if that wasn’t enough, he is working with two of his peers to launch the Citizens of the World Club. This group will focus on addressing the eight anti-poverty Millenium Development Goals set forth by the United Nations. Danny works just as hard in the classroom and he is planning to pursue a career in journalism. With all Danny has accomplished in his short time at WMS, it will be exciting to see what he decides to do next!
Lydia is from China and though she is far from home, our mountainous landscape reminds her of where she grew up.  She began here in January of her sophomore year and is now a senior, contemplating her next steps. Two of Lydia’s goals in coming to WMS were to improve her English and to learn to ski – she has accomplished both and so much more! She had her first opportunity to play a competitive team sport when she joined the soccer team and there as in life, Lydia is not one to sit on the sidelines. She is endlessly enthusiastic and has seized many opportunities to try new things – road biking, a whitewater rescue course and learning the maple sugaring process are just a few examples. One of Lydia’s favorite events on campus is International Night because it gives her the chance to share her culture and also to learn about her fellow students. She really values the sense of connection that is fostered in this community and she is a big part of creating it!
Angus grew up in Falmouth, MA but had spent many weekends visiting his grandparents in Franconia, NH. After spending his freshman year at his local public high school, he realized it was not the right fit and asked his parents if he could move to NH, live with his grandparents and attend school. On the recommendation of a friend, they visited WMS and Angus made the move to begin his sophomore year. Within two weeks, he knew it was the right decision and he has never looked back. He enjoys the small classes and the accessibility of his teachers. Angus grew up in a family of ski racers but has decided to pursue freestyle skiing and this year he will get his first chance to compete as a member of the WMS freestyle team. He can often be found on Hood’s Hill practicing and sharing his knowledge with his friends and teammates. Angus is artistic on skis and in life and we are happy he has chosen to share his many talents with us!
Synonyms for typical include average, stock and common. There is very little that is average or stock about students at The White Mountain School. We can, however, find some common threads. Some love soccer and biology, some enjoy mountain biking and reading Shakespeare and some prefer to spend their time on the ski slopes and in the art room, but they all have a passion for something and make an effort to pursue that passion. Some can sit down at the piano and play beautiful music from memory, some can analyze historic events and make connections that hadn’t even occurred to their teachers and some can find the back of the lacrosse goal on a regular basis, but they all have talents which are celebrated and refined here on a daily basis. Some help to raise funds for their local and global neighbors in need, some take charge of the campus recycling program and some take as many Sustainability courses as they can fit in their schedule, but they all contribute to this community and the world beyond it in some way. And so I think the answer is that the typical White Mountain School student is passionate, talented and involved and we are fortunate to have 100 students here who fit that mold!

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