Proctor Academy first opened its doors as a village school serving the children of Andover. Day students have always been a critical part of the Proctor community, however, our student community now includes students from around the globe with day students comprising roughly 25% of the student body.
Proctor’s shift to being primarily a boarding school in the early 20th century brought with it the development of programs designed specifically for boarding students: Saturday classes, off-campus programs, required afternoon activities/athletics, and weekend activities. These programs provide educational opportunities for all students (boarding and day), and it is our ability to offer diverse academic courses, integrated academic support, high level athletics and arts programs, and term-long off-campus programs that attracts students from all over the country to Andover, New Hampshire.
Living and learning at a boarding school is a unique experience, however. It is an even more unique experience for our day students as they attempt to straddle two very different worlds at home and at school. We would be remiss if we did not provide intentional guidance to our day students as they navigate their years at Proctor. Day Student Leaders for the 2016-2017 school year, Grey Bechok ‘17 and Catherine Doheny ‘17 worked with Day Student Coordinator Linda Sargent P'13, '14 to identify the biggest benefits and challenges associated with being a day student at a boarding school.
- Expanding your network by going to school with kids from all over the world who you would never have the opportunity to get to know by attending a day school.
- You have the structure and support of the Proctor community as well as the structure and support of your family as well.
- Having your social life and weekend activities built directly into your life at Proctor.
- Building lifelong bonds with your classmates by taking part in Proctor’s off-campus programs.
- Finding balance in your life at school and your life at home by making sure you are not “living” at Proctor and ignoring your family.
- Feeling like you miss out on what happens in the dorm in the evenings and at night.
- Not having your own dorm or dorm room to go back to during the day or before sports.
- Never having a snow day or holiday like your public school friends!
When asked what advice he would share with incoming day students, Grey ‘17 notes, “In my opinion being a day student is the best of both worlds. Take advantage of everything Proctor has to offer. There are so many opportunities here, but you have to take a few risks and step out of your comfort zone in order take full advantage of all Proctor has to offer!”
Catherine ‘17 adds, “One of the biggest benefits of being a day student at Proctor is being able to go home to your family. Proctor, as it is, already has the most incredible support system, but being able to check in with your parents and have their daily presence is a whole other level of awesome. The thing that makes being a day student at Proctor special is I've never felt ‘different’ being a day student. Even during my junior year people would see me walking to my car after study hall and say, 'You're a day student!?' and it's the funniest thing because you realize how it may seem like a big factor to you, but it's almost insignificant to everyone else. My biggest advice to incoming day students would be to not limit yourself because you think you need to stick with the other day students. Proctor is such a unique opportunity to meet new people and expose yourself to things you might not know from growing up in rural New Hampshire. The student body is one of the best learning tools.”