Sometimes a good, sensible essay can settle the mind. Well-crafted sentences with their musicality, their soothing rhythms, and their carefully selected words are almost akin to deep breathing exercises - or baseball games. Meditative. Centering. Moving at their own, requisite pace. This week, as we seem to hurtle towards next week’s presidential elections, I have found it helpful to turn to EB White now that the MLB season is over. His pieces are measured, precise in their totality. Sane. As the Dodgers vanquished the Rays this week, it was not hard to imagine EB White appreciating the games. Today, two volumes of his collected works sit on my desk, so much linguistic sanity. A double header’s worth of pieces.
Before the addition of the Strength and Conditioning program, run by Craig Leaman and Ross Young, out of season athletes lacked an official structure to train for their primary sport while out of season. However, with the renovation to the Farrell Field House in 2019 and construction of a new fitness center and functional turf strip in the gym, opportunities abound for out of season athletes to hone their skills specific to their sport. Due to COVID-19, NEPSAC rules have allowed for increased contact with out of season athletes and coaches this fall. Proctor's focus has been on twice weekly strength and conditioning sessions for winter sport athletes in addition to twice weekly practices.
The fiery reds and oranges of mid-October maples have given way to the rusts and browns of November oaks. Forecasted snow tonight confirms winter is near; the inevitable changing of seasons upon us. It is hard to imagine a more pleasant weather pattern than Fall in New Hampshire - cool nights, warm days, abundant sunshine, and scenery to match. A look through Proctor’s Flickr page looks like one big brochure for boarding school, and yet when we experience a few rainy days in a row, we seemingly forget the beauty that so recently surrounded us.
Each year, Proctor’s Allan S. Bursaw Chapter of the National Honor Society inducts members of the senior class as academic leaders in the community. Selected by a committee of faculty, members of the National Honor Society have demonstrated excellence in the organization’s four pillars of character, scholarship, leadership, and service.
One of my favorite podcasts is Guy Raz’s How I Built This. There’s something about the raw, unfiltered stories he tells of entrepreneurs and their journey that resonates with the work we do each day with adolescents at Proctor. Very few successful businesses, or students, have a linear path to success, and it is during the valleys where lessons are learned and business models are refined.
Proctor Academy’s Ocean Classroom program has entered week four at sea, voyaging through the Long Island Sound and past New York City bound for the Chesapeake Bay. After five days docked in Mystic, Connecticut, the student crew of 21 was eager to get back on the water for the next leg of their journey. Read more from the past week’s Ship’s Logs below!
We like to be right. It’s affirming, pumps us up, and boosts confidence. We crave it, moving from one island of affirmation to the next, hopscotching the confidence squares. We can be talking about sports, politics, religion, race, or the best way to fix a lawnmower. We feel good when we get it right, when we “win,” when we get that chemical hit of dopamine. Gradually, however, with perspective, we realize that being right isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Sometimes being wrong can be a good thing.
Tucked into the middle of New Hampshire, the Blackwater River winds 37 miles through fields and woods and towns from nearby Pleasant Lake to the Merrimack River. Here at Proctor, the kayaking team is fortunate to be just a short drive away from the Blackwater, which allows the team many opportunities to learn and train.
Each year on Indigenous Peoples Day we pause to recognize the Abenaki people who lived on this beautiful land before European settlers colonized it. We look out from Balanced Rock toward Mount Kearsarge (g’wizawajo in Western Abenaki meaning Rough Mountain) and honor those who first called this valley home.
Ocean Classroom 2020 is making its way along the Connecticut coast toward New York City as we publish this recap of the past week aboard schooner Roseway. For the 21 intrepid sailors who once merely called themselves students, this voyage is teaching them how to live, learn, and work alongside each other unlike any other experience could.
Without the ability for our usual in-person Fall Family Weekend, Proctor’s College Counseling team will host a series of virtual seminars over the next week. Parents of juniors and seniors should keep their eyes out for an email from Director of College Counseling Mike Koenig early next week with additional information.
Autumn in New England sees people from all over the country come for some of the most amazing leaf-peeping opportunities around. And at Proctor, who has a better view of the beautiful foliage than the school’s mountain biking team that gets to cruise through the woods every afternoon! Each year, Proctor’s mountain biking team gains more and more students, this season boasting a whopping thirty-five students.The sheer number of athletes and bikes to maintain may seem overwhelming, especially with the addition of COVID-19 and the protocols that come with it; however, that doesn’t seem to be the case at Proctor where our mountain biking coaches and athletes are having an amazing fall season.
Proctor's Ocean Classroom 2020 continues to explore the coast of Maine as they enter their third week at sea. A surprise maple syrup drop-off near the Isle of Shoals from Brooks Bicknell '77, Jackson Bicknell '11, and Hunter Churchill '01 on Sunday afternoon provided a rare connection to the outside world for our students. Check out recent Ship's Logs from the schooner Roseway for more updates and read on for reflections from students at sea!
Although Proctor's Admissions Team is unable to host on-campus visits this fall, we would love to connect virtually with families interested in learning more about Proctor. We will offer "Explore Proctor" information sessions throughout October and November for families to learn about all that Proctor has to offer.
Every time language is spoken or written, every time a work of art is created and displayed, it sits within some kind of larger context. My interest this week is in words, how they hang in the air or on the page and how the air is charged around them and depending on the context and who is saying them, the meaning changes. No word, written or spoken, gets to simply float in a vacuum, in a weightless state and the absence of pull. Every word carries with it a definition, or several definitions, and it carries with it a certain connotation that might be relatively neutral and light in weight, but might also be significantly heavy within a context and setting, which leads me to the question, who gets to say what when?
For near a decade, Proctor has aired live athletic events, performances, and assemblies to countless online spectators. With the most unique year that any of us have experienced, the need for high quality, live broadcasting of athletic contests, and performances at Proctor has never been more vital. Proctor's talented technology team has been hard at work making sure cameras are ready and signals are strong to ensure the highest quality production possible.