Recently we held a panel discussion with admissions counselors. With the help of the guidance department chair, Alison Nowicki, and CCHS social studies teacher, Chris Gauthier, we tried to cull some salient facts. Not an exhaustive list, but I include some takeaways below.
Discussing post-high school options with your child is essential, but I recommend it start with the following question. Do you feel pressure to pursue a certain path or look at colleges because of _______? We could fill in that blank with many different things, be it peer pressure or concerns of measuring up to some perceived expectation or self-imposed pressure.
It is important young adults choose their path or look at colleges because they are inspired to do so. With age comes the acuity of hindsight, and I think we must emphasize that the years after high school and attending college is more than where they will be for the next four years. It is a time where young adults figure out the kind of person they want to be for the next 4,10, 20 years. Choosing a course of study complete with a major that allows students to graduate employable is essential. Still, these formidable years are where they learn to be better friends, siblings, sons/daughters, partners, and people. A time where they are laying the foundation for a prosperous life making the world a better place by utilizing their unique talents. Lofty and idealistic, but I believe it to be true.
Read on for more information on upcoming events. Have a great weekend.
"Parents supporting teachers inspiring students."
Concord Education Fund 25th Anniversary Event
The generosity of the Concord Education Fund cannot be overstated. The tireless efforts of so many parents who selflessly donate hours of volunteer time on behalf of our schools. A simple thank you is woefully inadequate, but on behalf of the high school, it is the least I can do. Thank you, all. Details on their 25th Anniversary party is below. I hope you will attend or donate money to support and inspire our future leaders.
Date: November 16, 2019
Time: 7 – 11pm
Location: 300 Baker Ave
The backside of the building
Last weekend in Wrentham, our Boys XC and Girls XC teams were crowned D2 EMASS Champs. Saturday, the teams travel to Gardner Municipal Golf Course for the D1 All-State Championship Race and look to add some more hardware to the CC trophy case. The girls start at 12:40 and the boys at 2:00.
Football was eliminated from the playoff bracket last weekend in a thriller vs. Tewksbury. Saturday at noon CC hosts Danvers in a matchup of well-coached, talented teams. Tickets are $7 adults/$5 students.
Cheerleading competes in the MSSA D2 North Regionals on Saturday at North Andover High School. Our team performs at 12:35. Tickets are $10/adults and $7/students.
Boys Soccer beat Wakefield 4-0 on Wednesday to advance to the D2 North Final vs. Winchester on Sunday at 3:30 at Manning Field in Lynn. A win Sunday propels the team to a state championship game appearance - date and location TBD.
College Panel Event
On Wednesday, 16 October, juniors had a chance to attend an information session with a panel of college admissions professionals. In attendance were representatives from Dickinson College, The College of the Holy Cross, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Middlesex Community College, and Northeastern University. Admissions officers offered advice to students, answered questions emphasizing what is important for admission decisions, and provided insight into options other than going straight to a four-year institution. Some of the main takeaways:
1) Know why you're going, and interrogate your reasons for wanting to go. College is about learning, and that learning will be more meaningful if it's something that you wish to as opposed to a perfunctory next step. Don't feel obliged to apply to and attend college right after high school. Perhaps a gap year, an experience like City Year or working before attending school. College is also expensive and it irresponsible to spend that money on something if you are not sure why or if you want it.
2) Make sure there is a market for the skills that you want to develop in college. Yes, you should study your passion, but know that you will eventually have to get a job. Some majors are marketable right out of college, and others will require more study. Make sure to take account of this when you are planning your college experience.
3) The essay is important, but it won't make or break an application. In the end, colleges want to hear your voice. Also, your writing matters across the application. Correct grammar is essential not only in the main essay but also in the supplements and when writing about extracurriculars.
4) While all grades matter, junior year grades are the most important because they offer the best picture of the student you might be in the future.
5) Not all schools require SAT/ACT scores; in fact, the GPA is widely viewed as a better measure of a student's ability.
6) Interview if you can, as it is a chance for the student to get to know the college, as well as the college to get to know the student. Both should be trying to determine if the other is the right fit.
7) No extracurricular activity is better than another. Instead, colleges are interested in sustained commitment and meaningful engagement. For some, those activities are sports or clubs, and for others, those activities are work or family obligations.
CCHS received its twenty-first annual delegation of students and teachers from our sister-city of Nanae in Hokkaido, Japan, from Monday 10/28 through Monday 11/4, as part of a larger delegation and exchange that included adult citizens and town officials.
Delegation from Japan
A big thank you to Dr. Nurenberg for fostering a signature relationship with our friends in Nanae, an ocean away. I include pictures at the conclusions of this blog.
Nine students from Nanae High School and Jr. High spent the week living in homestays with CCHS families, attending classes and taking part in events with CCHS students like dodge ball, attending practices of the Cross Country team, concert band, and chorus, and producing their own shows on the WIQH radio station and CCTV television station.
In addition to these school-based activities which they shared with their homestay siblings, the visiting Japanese students also took special field trips to Boston and Salem to learn about New England history. The Nanae students made cultural presentations during lunch blocks, including tea-making, origami folding, and Japanese games and snacks, while the CC students introduced their Japanese counterparts to Halloween. The whole delegation came together for a potluck party wherein everyone did both the Hokey Pokey and the Hakodate Squid Dance.
This visit takes place in a larger context of how Concord Carlisle High School has enjoyed a twenty-five year long sister-school relationship with two schools in Japan'snorthernmost island of Hokkaido. We have sent our own student delegations to Nanae in 1998, 2004 and 2007, 2010 and 2019 (concert band) and in2007, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016, and2018 (SciFi club).
Throughout all this time, students at CCHS have maintained pen and videopal relationships with their Japanese counterparts, learned Taiko drumming, and more. Our next planned outbound delegation trip will be in April 2020.
If you want to get involved with our sister-school program, please contact Dr. David Nurenberg in the English Department (firstname.lastname@example.org), who is our Japan program coordinator.
Attention all students: Project 351 and the Interact club are leading a food drive to support the Open Table food pantry here in Concord. The food drive will be a competition between advisories, with the top advisories getting a Dunkin Donuts breakfast. The drive starts November 13th and lasts until December 13th, and donation bins will be located in your advisory room or in a breakout space. If you do not put your food items in your advisory’s bin, make sure you ask your advisor to update the google sheet to record the donations. Here is a link to Open Table’s most needed food items as donation guidelines. Advisory prizes aside, I hope you all will consider donating to support this drive. Many of us are in a position to do good, so why wouldn’t we? Thank you, and may the best advisory win!"
At CCHS, we recognize that today's students are often bombarded with messages indicating that the path to success as an adult is linear and that there is only one definition of achievement. To provide a broader perspective, we reached out to CCHS alumni from all over the world, all of whom have graduated within the last twenty years.
We asked about their work and educational experiences, their setbacks, and triumphs, along with any advice they have for current students. Their stories, now on display outside the Learning Commons, provide many different illustrations of what “success” can look like post-CCHS.
We want every student to find the path that is right for them and to leave high school empowered to embrace the inevitable joys and setbacks that are part of the journey of reaching adulthood.
Click here to read the stories
Thank you to the parents on the Challenge Success Committee Polly Meyer, Lauree Eckler, Lynn Delise, and Jennifer Clarke, and to the staff members who contributed to this project, Ned Roos & Madeleine Pooler, & Tracie Dunn, and to Senior Matthew Ngaw.
Photo by William Owen
The Laramie Project
Under the leadership of our talented and dedicated theatre teacher, Melissa Charych, CC Theatre actors and techies have been working on our fall production of The Laramie Project, a documentary play that explores the murder of Matthew Shepard, a Wyoming college student who was beaten and killed in 1998 for being gay. As an educational institution that stands in solidarity against hate, our talented group of students, staff, and parent volunteers will pay hommage to Mathew and to all members of the LGBTQ community. The play is an ensemble piece requiring actors to portray multiple characters communicating a message of compassion and hope in the face of unspeakable hate.
Immediately following Matthew Shepard’s murder, members of the Tectonic Theater Project in New York City traveled to Laramie, Wyoming, to conduct interviews with members of the community and to the people closest to Mathew. Composed using first-hand accounts, The Laramie Project utilizes the words from those interviews to construct a masterful play, and I am excited to see our students perform with passion and sincerity. We are thrilled to have a member of the original Tectonic Theater Company come to CCHS to run a workshop with our cast and crew on Monday, October 21st.
Performances are November 21-24 at 7:30pm. Melissa, Ned Roos, Rebecca Robichaud, parent volunteers, and CCPOPS, welcome you to join us and witness this very important piece of theatre.