October 2010
November redirect

Fall Trimester


Fall Trimester





meet our student leaders

Head of School John Baird introduces Student Body Presidents Brian Robbins and Mariah Williams at the All-School Assembly; they're about to make the traditional presentation of a tree to this year's pre-Kindergarten class, the class of 2023. For more, see Students below.

friends schools students of color college fair


Westtown students and their parents are cordially invited to attend an extraordinary College Fair held here on Saturday, October 24; join students and parents from 75 independent schools from DC to New England. Over 100 outstanding colleges will be in attendance. This list is still growing: www.westtown.edu/foccollegefair/focfair09_colleges09.pdf

The day's events include workshops on the college admission process led by the college representatives in the morning followed by a forum (keynote and panel discussion) in the Theater, and the actual Fair in the Field House from 3:15 - 5:15. Schedule for the Day: www.westtown.edu/foccollegefair/Sponsored by the Friends schools in this region and hosted by Westtown's Families of Color Organization, most of the students and parents (but not all) attending from off-campus will be people of color. As the host school, all Westtown students and parents are invited to attend - and should definitely take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to learn about colleges and the college admission process from the experts: the admissions professionals who recruit and make the admissions decisions for their institutions. 

At the College Fair (3:15 - 5:15), each college will have a table in the Field House and the admissions counselors will be available to chat with students and their parents, answer questions, and hand out information. Making the personal contact is extremely valuable, especially for seniors and juniors who may be applying.

section divider

students of achievement

Congratulations to Westtown seniors Pat Bell and Cameron Brand for achieving the rank of Eagle Scout, and to Nikky Wang, also a senior, on the publication of her book, Jintian: Vogue in the Past.

section divider

we really did it!

In an extraordinary show of support and generosity, 2,263 donors from throughout the Westtown community raised $1,030,940 for last year’s Westtown Fund campaign. This year we aim to raise $1,050,000 and have one quarter of our community participating in the campaign (we had 21% participation last year). Sue and John Schick, 8th grade parents, have volunteered to help inspire increased giving among parents, and have written a testimonial on our website (www.westtown.edu/wftest). In it they say, “Think about it….all of us can afford to give $1 or $25. With increased participation from the parent community, we can inspire major gifts from foundations and individual donors. Even during personally challenging economic times, it’s possible that giving a little can be impactful and personally satisfying.” 

If you would like to give a gift online, please visit www.westtown.edu/wfdonate. If you would like to help inspire others to give (whether you are a parent, alumni, grandparent, etc.), please contact David Eldridge at david.eldridge@westtown.edu


 as good as senator al!


Westtown sophomore Andromeda Huang of Taiwan took the challenge of learning all 50 states one step further - and earned an extra ‘A’ – by drawing this map of the US from memory. Her Intro to American Cultures class had recently watched Senator Al Franken (D-Minn) do the same in this now-famous YouTube video:

section divider

shoemakers enrich the community culture

Imagine having the opportunity to learn how bones can speak to us across the millenia from Smithsonian forensic anthropologist Doug Owsley. Imagine talking with Bayard Rustin toward the end of his life of social activism. Imagine hearing Anne Tyler, Gloria Naylor or Sonia Sanchez reading from their works—and in some cases, from works in progress. Imagine live performances by Pete Seeger, PHILADANCO, the African Children’s Choir and the Cuban ensemble Habana Sax. Thanks to the generosity of the Shoemaker and Flaccus families and the Class of 1930, these kinds of opportunities have been part of the educational experience of Westtown School students for over 40 years.

Recent visits by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Junot Diaz and the music and dance ensemble Alo Brasil are part of a long-time Westtown tradition. Beginning in the early 1960s, the groups mentioned above set up an endowed fund to bring distinguished visitors to Westtown for single lectures or performances, and often, to work closely with smaller groups of students. Having attended Westtown, the families recalled the powerful impact of outstanding visitors such as Robert Frost, and they recognized their lasting value for Westtown students. Their hope was that the Shoemaker Visiting Lecturer Fund—now known as the Shoemaker Events Program—would enable Westtown to continue a tradition of searching out and inviting to the school talented men and women from a variety of fields.

An indication of the significance of these visits in the shared life of the school is that very often ideas left with students reappear weeks or months later in class discussions, Meetings for Worship, or a variety of independent and senior projects. Westtown alumni often recall Shoemaker visitors as highlights of their Westtown education, and many have been inspired to read, study, experience, engage—and in some cases, to find direction for their life’s work—by the visitors.

Thanks to the ongoing legacy of the Shoemaker and Flaccus families, Shoemaker events are free and open to the entire Westtown community. Administered by a Shoemaker Committee made up of Westtown faculty and staff members, the goal is to schedule programs that appeal to a variety of interests and ages. Contact Sue Gold, clerk of the committee, if you have suggestions for future Shoemaker programs. 

In September, Alo Brasil enchanted a Westtown audience with music & dance.





Author Junot Diaz provided thoughtful insights into his writing - and met with the Westtown Book Club before his talk to the wider Westtown community.

section divider

  Green Tip of the Month


Did you know that Chester County has done a great job preserving its farmland? In 2002 there were 168,165 acres of farmland in Chester County and in 2007, that number dropped only 1% to 166,891.

Westtown has been an active participant in farm preservation. The 200-acre farm on the school's campus has been in continuous operation for over 210 years, and was probably farmed by native peoples for centuries before that. Our organic one-and-a-half acre mini-farm gives our students direct experience in planting, growing, and harvesting their own food, continuing a vital agrarian tradition.

At home you can start a vegetable garden with even the smallest plot of earth. Fall is a good time to plan out a new bed, begin a leaf compost pile, and dream of spring planting.

section divider

upper school fall play coming up


It’s a clear, moonless Friday night in the remote (mythical) town of Almost, Maine. As if in a midwinter night’s dream, Almost’s residents find themselves falling in and out of love in unexpected, unusual and often hilarious ways. Westtown students will present the delightful new comedy “Almost, Maine” on Oct. 23-24 in the Barton-Test Theater. All are welcome to attend!


  meet our SBPs 

We asked Student Body Presidents Brian Robbins ’10 and Mariah Williams ’10 three questions:

How did you get to Westtown?

Brian: I came to Westtown in 8th grade from public school. It was the best decision I have ever made. When I visited, the community here was so welcoming and vibrant that I knew I had to be a part of it. Westtown teaches students how to think, and that is one of the main reasons why I came here.
Mariah: I came from De La Salle Academy, a small private middle school in New York City where the high school placement process was very rigorous. Many of my friends were choosing to go away to boarding school to experience life outside the comforts of the big city and because they knew that it would prepare them for college. Westtown was definitely a popular choice. My mom visited first and absolutely fell in love with the campus, facilities and teachers, so I thought I would do my own research. When (former admissions staff member) Mark Stucker came to De La Salle to interview me, he presented Westtown in such a way that I knew I would thrive both socially and academically. He emphasized the strong sense of community, and most importantly, diversity, something of great importance to me.

What should our readers know about you?

Brian: I would want Westonians to know how much I care about this place. I love the community we have here. Westtown is my home, and as excited as I am to move on to college, I am really going to miss it here.
Mariah: What I would like people to know about me is that I am a hard worker who puts 100 percent into everything I do. I love working with and meeting new people from different walks of life. I am very passionate about issues of diversity both inside and outside the Westtown community. Since 9th grade, I have made an effort to involve myself in various clubs and activities to get to know people.

What are your goals as SBPs?

Brian: My main goal as SBP is to have students really get to know each other. Specifically, I would like the Seniors to bond. As the largest graduating class in Westtown history, we still have a lot to learn about each other.
Mariah: As SBP, I want to make this a fun, productive and memorable year. I hope to make Westtown a place where people love to be, by making weekends fun and by planning activities that involve everyone. In February, I hope to plan a Caribbean Fest with a dance and other activities to celebrate Caribbean culture at Westtown.

section divider

now showing in biology class

Students in Dawn Lovejoy's Advanced Biology class recently donned 3D glasses to view a powerpoint presentation showing protein structures.

section divider

A highlight of Lower School's September Celebration were the pinwheels for peace.Every student created one, and in groups, placed them in various spots around campus.


 fitness center... you're invited to join!

Join other Westtown parents and alumni in our Fitness Center, with special features such as a wide selection of Nautilus machines, elliptical trainers, stationary and recumbent bikes, treadmills, stair climber, and free weights. Walk/run the new indoor track lit by natural light from the huge, north-facing windows.

Cost? just $35 a month billed to your credit card, no long-term contracts to sign.

Open to all in the Westtown community 7 days a week during specified hours; also open during vacation periods and over the summer. Need more info? Want a tour? Ready to sign up? Contact the Athletic Office at 610-399-7945 or stop in to the Athletic Center.

section divider

 photos galore


Team photos, performance photos, all the life-at-Westtown photos we take – you can find them in our galleries on SmugMug. Download the image, buy a print or turn an image into a t-shirt. More photos are added every week, and all of last year’s are still available to view.


 alumni news


calling all athletes!

It’s a Westtown tradition, so get your game face on and join us for our annual alumni sporting events.

Fall Alumni Game Day

Saturday, November 7, 2009

11:00 am         Alumni vs. Varsity soccer game on Raiford Field

The alumni team will be coached by Jim Morris**

Alumni vs. Varsity field hockey game on Oak Lane Field.

1:00pm            Lunch in the Belfry

**Jim Morris was the Westtown varsity soccer coach from 1967-1992. During his 33 year tenure at Westtown, Jim was the Director of Studies, a history teacher and a coach.

Alumni Basketball Games

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Refresh your competitive spirit and see your old basketball teammates. Bring your friends (and your game) to the Competition Gym court. Food and beverages will be provided after the games in the Belfry.

6:30 pm           Women’s Alumni Game

7:30 pm           Men’s Alumni Game

Friends of Westtown Events

If you live in one of these areas, watch your mail for more details and plan to join us for a gathering of Westtown alumni, parents, and friends. For more information contact the Alumni Office at 610-399-7912 or alumni@westtown.edu.

Sunday, October 25, 2009         Philadelphia Area
Thursday, November 5, 2009     New York City
February 2010                           Los Angeles
Late March/Early April 2010       Asia
Spring 2010                               Boston
July 2010                                   Europe

become a fan of westtown and join our new linkedin group!

Want to know what’s happening on campus? Can’t wait until Alumni Weekend to find your classmates? Become a fan of the brand new Westtown School Page on Facebook and join the Westtown School Community Group on LinkedIn. Just go to www.facebook.com and www.linkedin.com and search for Westtown School.

section divider

Westtown School  975 Westtown Rd. West Chester, PA 19382-5700
Phone: (610) 399-0123 Fax: (610) 399-3760