News of the Academy
The School held its 219th graduation this morning, and the newest alums are leaving behind the rest of the students to complete the academic year. The self-reported college matriculation results were lower than usual, however, the most popular destinations among 158 students who did disclose their plans were Brown (12), University of Virginia (9), Cornell (8), Columbia (6), Georgetown (6), Middlebury (6), Bowdoin (5), Duke (5), Princeton (5) and Trinity (5). In total, 26.5% of the students who reported are headed for the Ivies but, in a first, none to Dartmouth.
On the admissions front, Deerfield accepted 17% of its 1,822 applicants and had a 68% yield, meaning that 11.6% of the applicants actually will enroll. Of those who will be coming next September, 21% are either legacies or have siblings on campus, 13% are international, and 38% will be receiving financial aid.
In sports, Lacrosse (13-2) and Baseball (7-10) continued their respective patterns of recent years. Boys Crew was undefeated (5-0) in the regular season and finished first yesterday in the annual New England Interscholastic Rowing Association championship.
The search firm hired to find a new Head of School has been taking soundings at regional events. A number of scheduled changes have taken place on the Board which, at its meeting this month, promised to take up the question of the dress code with the goal of reaching a decision by January 2019. Other issues on the agenda, according to The Scroll, are the upcoming renovation of the Health and Wellness Center and opportunities for improving Deerfield's use of technology.
News of the Class
Ed Grosvenor accompanied his wife this month to southern Tuscany where she had taken courses a few years ago. Ed, not surprisingly, had his camera handy and posted on Facebook some shots of Florence and a picturesque fishing village on the Italian Riviera. Tim Truby visited Iceland earlier this month and posted some stunning nature photographs. You can see those photos and more of Tim's work by visiting his website. Christopher Beach is off to Namibia this month for his annual trip to some far off spot. Although Christopher retired in 2015 as President and Artistic Director of the La Jolla Music Society, he has found himself having to fill-in from time to time following the abrupt departure of his successor earlier this year.
No sooner was the ink dry on Edition 57 of Patent Law Fundamentals than John Mills sent off to the printer the manuscript for Edition 58. Over the course of his career as an attorney at the United States Patent & Trademark Office John examined nearly 400 patents, all of which he has catalogued for posterity. In the category of better late than never, Barry Ahearn spoke about “A Brief History of ‘Precision’” at the Ezra Pound International Conference in Philadelphia last June. Barry has been a full professor of English at Tulane University for twenty years and is an authority on Pound.
News of the Reunion
As you know by now, eleven members of the Reunion Committee visited campus earlier this month. If you had been there and were to have stood opposite the the Main School Building before anyone was stirring, you might have believed that nothing had changed since 1969. Old Main Street remains the prettiest street in America, and the school buildings that front the Street are all as you remember. It is only when the students begin crossing over from the dorms on the east side of the campus that you begin to realize that time has not, in fact, stood still. John Shanholt presciently noted this upon the graduation of one of his daughters in 2005 when he wrote, "Now I await my class reunions with more desire. Again I observe that Deerfield, while appearing to be the same school in the same place, is in so many ways a substantially different and better institution than the one I left in 1969. Now I have two fond and distinct memories - what it was then, and what it recently has been." This is a meme that I think only those who return for the Reunion will appreciate.
As I mentioned in my recent letter, we attended the now weekly school meeting in the auditorium of what we remember as the Memorial Building. You all will have the opportunity to see that the auditorium we knew, while in the same space, has been totally transformed. I invite you to experience what we witnessed with two videos. The first clip is of Kiana Rawji '18 Harvard '22 delivering her Senior Meditation "In Search of Weight". I also mentioned that our visit was timed to coincide with the presentation of the Tom Ashley Award. See Lilly Hartley, this year's recipient, describe her personal and professional journey since her graduation in 1997. Rather than take my word, you can judge for yourselves the benefits of the return to co-education.
|Arnstein, Kay, Suitor, Walbridge, Olchowski, Jacobs|
For those who may be wondering where all the years have gone, the Academy apparently agrees and has redefined what it means to be considered "Grand" under a policy adopted last year. As of a result of the "60 is the new 50" policy, we will remain known merely as the "Great" Class of 1969 until at least 2029. That is the unfortunate reality for all those in the Class who feel that they will have earned the right to be called "Grand" on the occasion of the 50th Reunion. As a consolation for deferring receipt of the honorific title, we will be invited to Reunions annually following our 60th rather than every five years, thereby guaranteeing full employment for our tireless Attendance Committee.
On a final note, the Reunion Committee has plans to infiltrate the 2018 reunion with three members of the Class. Their mission is to observe and collect information that will inform our planning and make our Reunion the standard by which other 50th reunions of our era are judged.
We will have more to communicate about the Reunion in the fall. Until then, best wishes to all.