Meet the New Class

Fall officially began on Friday, and tomorrow marks three weeks since the Class of 2021 arrived at Brooks School as students for the first time.

The 82 new third-formers have been adjusting to Brooks by diving into their schoolwork, joining clubs and participating in afternoon activities. All have begun to make Brooks a home away from home, whether during the day or full-time as a boarding student. The entering class hails from cities across the United States — Chicago, Charlotte, and Santa Ana, California are all represented — and from countries around the world, including Bermuda, Hong Kong, and Korea.

A few fun facts about the new form:

  • They're twinning! There are two sets of twins in the Class of 2021, both from neighboring Andover, Mass.: Colin and Kyle Elliott, and Andres and Daniela Rosas. Classmates Gordie Hill and Tucker Hill, on the other hand, are not related. (Gordie is from Chevy Chase, Maryland; Tucker calls Raleigh, North Carolina home).
  • A few are already sharing – a first name. The third form includes three students named Jack, three called Ryan, and another three who go by Emma.
  • Many have ties to Brooks. Whether they're the child of an alum or cousin of a current student, 39 third-formers have some sort of legacy tie to the school. Three, in fact, are children of a faculty member.
  • All are enthusiastic about their passions. "We have musicians joining us who play the violin or the piano, saxophone, guitar, flute, clarinet, and sing," said Director of Admission and Financial Aid Bini Egertson. "Others are actors, community servants, artists, film aficionados, and athletes – in every sport. There are students who love creative writing, robotics, coding, languages, debate, Model United Nations, mock trial." If you name a pursuit, chances are, someone in the third form is already pursing it – and looking forward to furthering that interest at Brooks.

"It is really gratifying to see how excited the students are to be beginning their high school years at Brooks," said Egertson of the new class. And having helped choose each student to join our community, she shares the feeling. "It's so exciting to interview a student in the fall and then see him or her walk on campus here at Brooks the following September," she added.

This year, those first days were conducted a bit differently than they had been with prior classes. Pre-season was mostly eliminated from the schedule. "For the most part, all students arrived on the same day so that they could acclimate on the same day," explained Egertson. "Getting away from a long preseason helped the transition to Brooks go smoothly."

Third-form housing was handled differently this fall as well. "This year for the first time we have our first-year boarding girls housed together in Gardner dormitory to enhance their transition into boarding school and into high school, and to develop camaraderie among the new students," she said. "We hope to be able to offer this in the future for our new third-form boys."

This housing shift has been "an ongoing programmatic discussion for a while now," Egertson said. "It's something that we've wanted to do but until now we haven't had the right space or the ideal number of students in which to do it."

Everything aligned for the 2017-2018 school year and administrators decided to give an all third-form dorm a try. "There are lots of benefits to an approach like this," said Egertson. "We're giving the third-form boarding girls a shared experience and that's important."

Relationships are central to Brooks' mission of providing "the most meaningful educational experience our students will have in their lives," after all. As Head of School John Packard shared in his first chapel speech of the new year: "You may not know it yet but you're sitting with some of the people who will be the most important in your life."

Visit Living at Brooks to learn more about the entire student body, which during the last five years has enrolled students hailing from 29 states and 26 countries.

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