This year I’m taking Nature and Meaning of the Universe. I really appreciate that we have classes like that, because it feels like what I imagine a college class feels like. We have the opportunity to expand on things that I never thought I would experience in high school.
Last year, English was a really big step for me. Mr. Bennett was very influential in helping me with my writing. He took the time to sit with each individual student in one class period to go over their essays, talk to each of us about them, and give each of us some ideas.
That was really the first time that I started to fully appreciate everything we have academically at Mercersburg. I’m in a couple of honors classes, a couple of regular classes, and AP world history. So I have a mixture, and it’s challenging me at the right pace.
When I was applying to Mercersburg, I saw the Admission brochures that said, “Define yourself. Here.” And I thought, “What’s that all about?” But at the time I wasn’t really used to being in an environment where that was taken so literally.
Before Mercersburg I attended a parochial middle school. There no one was specifically good at singing, or band, or individual sports, or anything like that. So it was really thrilling to come coming here and see how many different skills my classmates have. I now see that it’s so great to be in a school where you’re able to define yourself, however you actually want to do that—whether that’s athletics, or music, or art, or academics.
Also, my other school didn’t pay nearly as much attention to each student as they do here. Each class had about 20 people, which is not bad, but it’s big compared to Mercersburg.
Mercersburg is my hometown, so I’m local to the core. Being a day student I was nervous that I wouldn’t fit in with the boarding students. But I realized in the middle of my freshman year that I had already made a lot of boarding friends. In fact, I really got along with most everyone. I am definitely looking forward to boarding in my senior year. I really do like being a day student, but it’s going to be really great to be able to live here like everyone else.
I love athletics. I guess I’ve always been more of an athlete than anything else. Soccer season is really when I love school, because it’s so much fun. And soccer makes me feel like it’s our own group—in a good way. As a team we also hang out together with and we’re really close. So it’s one way that I just say, hey, I’m here, because I’m playing soccer. So soccer, and then I do track and that’s the same way, not so strong as soccer, but that’s my stronger point, definitely.
I have come to like using the iPad. In the beginning of the year, I hated it. I did not like it at all. I liked having my computer, and I only wanted to use my computer. But now that we’ve gotten more through the year, I like the iPad. It’s so light and accessible. I just can pull it out and type anything I want.
I love keeping my homework on it, because it’s really organized—much more organized than it would be with just my writing. I’m not really a fan of reading off of the iPad, but when I do have to read, it’s nice, because I can just pull it out of my bag and start reading.
When I take notes in class, I use Notability, so I prefer the stylus, not the iPad keyboard. I like to use the stylus a lot. And I color coordinate. So it’s kind of entertaining even while I’m taking notes.