April 2012







tending the campus with middle school

Middle School celebrated Earth Day on April 16, with projects whose purposes (and that of ongoing campus stewardship) are to:
• Support and enrich the bio-diversity of plants, insects, birds and other wildlife in our region – and by extension, ourselves;
• Beautify the campus;
• Ensure woodland health into the next century (new trees);
• Work together for a common goal;
• Learn how to plant trees, shrubs, flowers, and vegetables – a skill we can use throughout our lives.

Middle School students and teachers, with a great deal of help from members of the Grounds staff, planted trees and shrubs in the Athletic Center parking lot, 100 hardwood saplings in the North Woods; onions at the mini-farm; native shrubs and perennials at the Middle School entrances; herbs in the Shakespeare garden by the Kitchen, and helped with Lower School Earth Day activities. It was hot and the work was hard, but the students dug right in, getting down and dirty. And as they worked together toward a common goal, they also had fun. Happy Earth Day!

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catch up with our town

Whose ‘Town? “Our ’Town” – and it’s your place for Westtown’s online media outlets, news and events. It’s a mashup page on the website! What is a mashup, you ask? It’s a place to aggregate social media: one-stop shopping for you.

Click on the page to explore video, photos, Facebook and Twitter feeds, Brown & White, student art work, sports schedules and a portal to all our blogs.  Of special note is the new faculty professional development blog.

To keep up with the latest in Westtown news, bookmark the page and visit it often! You’ll find a link to Our ’Town at the top of every page of our website as well.


team metal moose update

The Westtown School Robotics Team, aka the Metal Moose, scored big-time at the March 24 Lenape FIRST Robotics District Competition. This year’s challenge, Rebound Rumble, called on the team to develop a basketball-playing robot. Entering the elimination rounds as an eighth seed, Westtown’s team dispatched the number one and number two seeds to reach the championship round, qualifying them to compete in Regional and National Championships in late April.

The team was presented with the special judges’ recognition ‘Innovation in Control Award’, which honors application of control components or innovative control system that promotes unique machine function. Westtown Coach Steve Compton noted that although similar machine function control systems were achieved by other students, Westtown Robotics students outsmarted all the others by clearly explaining to the judges about the nature of the robot, its design and function.

Westtown Robotics placed 17th of 55 teams at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship at Temple University’s Liacouras Center, and goes to Nationals in Saint Louis, MO, April 25-29.

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walking for Nathaniel

On Tuesday, April 24th, former faculty member Denis Asselin will walk out his front door and embark on a pilgrimage—a 500-mile walk from Philadelphia to Boston with numerous stops along the way. The pilgrimage is in honor of his son Nathaniel, who died last year after a 13-year battle with body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), a type of obsessive-compulsive disorder. Denis’ goal is to spread awareness of BDD, a crippling brain disease, and to raise money for the International OCD Foundation.

Westtown has many ties to the Asselin family, so students, teachers and alumni were devastated by Nathaniel’s death last spring: Nathaniel himself was a member of the Class of 2005 and subsequently a teacher in the Middle School; Denis is a former French teacher; his wife, Judy, is a graduate and currently the school’s Sustainability Coordinator; and sister Carrie graduated in 2007.
Denis will follow the trail of Nathaniel’s life, from his school days to the clinics and medical facilities where he was treated, to places where he worked. The pilgrimage ends in Boston on June 6 at the International OCD Foundation. Along the way, Denis will talk at gatherings of caregivers and professionals, sharing his experience as a parent of someone with BDD and putting a face on the disease.

On Saturday, April 21, shortly before Denis embarks on his journey, there will be a “Singing Us Forward” concert at 7:00 pm at London Grove Friends Meeting House, 500 West Street Road, Kennett Square to which all are welcome. For information about OCD/BDD or to donate to the International OCD Foundation. Gifts in memory of Nathaniel can be earmarked for BDD research.


sweet treats/good cause

On March 27th, the Upper School Youth Philanthropy Club joined other community members at Chester County Community Foundation’s annual gala “Sweet Charity.” The club sold tickets to the event to benefit their grant pool. Interested in giving back and learning why others do, club members asked attendees ‘What Does Philanthropy Mean to You?’ The students displayed their own thoughts for attendees to read. Responses included: “Helping others by giving time, care and revenue,” “Giving of yourself to others,” “When you help people who need it and contribute what you can to the community around you,” Giving up your spare resources to help others.”

Join in the conversation - what does philanthropy mean to you? Email Faculty Co-Advisor Johanna Coyle with your thoughts!
In the photo above, PClub members are joined by Associate Director of Annual Giving Jayme Gittings (at left).

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 post season honors

Congratulations to Daniel Ochefu, named to the Philadelphia Inquirer’s All Southeastern PA First Team.

The 6-foot-10, 240-pound senior center, a strong rebounder and shot-blocker, averaged 14 points, 12 rebounds, and 4 blocks in sparking the Moose to a 21-10 mark and their first Friends Schools League title since 1985-86. In the league final, a 55-46 triumph over Academy of the New Church at Haverford College, Ochefu delivered 15 points, 16 boards (six on offense), and 4 blocks. For his career, the Villanova recruit scored 1,734 points.

Westtown Basketball finished with a 21-10 record, good for 5th place among the highly competitive Southeastern PA high schools.

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winter season notable athletes

Friends School League 1st Team All-League

Boys’ Basketball – Yilret Yiljep, Jeremy Schulkin, Daniel Ochefu; Hon Mention - Floyd Preito.

Wrestling – Seth Eckrich, Zach Cope, Sam Flagler, Jared Marshall, Evan Rutenbar, Will Cauffman, Ethan Tankel, Ari Yamaguchi, Ethan Fye; Hon Mention - Schafer Hudson-Ortyn.

Girls’ Swimming – Katie Schick, Stephanie Schick; Hon Mention - Ali Bennett.

Boys’ Swimming – Ian Pace; Hon Mention - Theo Black.


make a splash

splash & dash kids triathlon and community 5K

Sunday, April 22: Are you willing to help us "Spring into Action" and support Westtown? Sign up for the inaugural Splash & Dash Kids Triathlon and Community 5K! This day promises to be full of fun, activities and a little "friendly" competition. For more information about the race, please visit www.westtown.edu/splashanddash

 A special thank you to The Malvern School, our Event Sponsor, for all of their support.

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book this fair

Great books for everyone! Reserve time for the Lower School Book Fair, April 19-20 in the Cabin. Enjoy favorite titles chosen by our teachers, fun summer reading, new releases and award-winners. No junk merchandise, just great books. Proceeds will build our classroom libraries.

Grandparents and parents are welcome. Thursday, April 19, 7:45 am – 9 am and 2:30-4pm; Friday, April 20, 7:45 am – noon and 2:30-4 pm.

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7 months and counting...
until the 2012 auction!

Before we can celebrate, there is a lot to be done as the auction could not come together without the hard work and dedication of our volunteers. It is your collaboration and creativity that make the night such a success, and we could not do it without your support; therefore, we are pleased to invite you to join us for the 2012 Auction Kickoff on Thursday, May 3, 2012 at the home of Kristen Waterfield. RSVP by Tuesday, May 1 to Special Events Manager Lisa Brown.

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tennis, challenges and much more

Check out www.westtown.edu/golf for the latest news about the 8th Annual Golf & Tennis Outing on Monday, May 21 at White Manor Country Club. With the return of the Parent and Alumni Challenge and a new silent auction format, this year's event promises to be full of excitement. Stay tuned for a sneak peek of our auction items in May eCollections.



through May 21, 2012

 US Art Dept chair and Ceramics teacher Joyce Nagata and current parent Susan Bankert are two of the ‘Claybody’ artists featured in a return exhibition at The Art Trust Gallery, 16 W. Market Street, West Chester. Community sharing and solitary work inspire the creation of functional pots and engaging sculpture to enhance everyday life. CLAYBODY artists reconnect in this exhibit after over a year of exploration on their individual paths. The Art Trust Gallery is a non-profit organization which links businesses and philanthrophy with the arts.


 eddie returns

Eddie Montilla ’77 returns to Westtown for his 35th reunion after dazzling a capacity Westtown audience at his Shoemaker performance in September 2010. A world-class keyboardist with over 30 years of experience, Eddie is a successful songwriter and music producer. His most recent hit is “The Champ,” for which he composed and performed all of the music, with drum beat by Drew Money and lyrics by Nelly. “The Champ” has been selected for the Madden 2013 NFL Game, and was heard on ESPN for the college bowl games this fall.

His clients have included Queen Latifah, Ashanti, Nelly, Lady Gaga, Gloria Estefan, Shakira, Pet Shop Boys, Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, Cool and Dre, SnoopDogg, Drew Money, Lil Wayne, Chris Brown, and Daryl Hall, just to name a few! Eddie has a deep passion for movies and television.  He has scored music for numerous movies and also performed the theme song to Disney's "Ice Age 3" featuring Queen Latifah. This year, Eddie will present a special Alumni Day performance the morning of May 12 in the Barton-Test Theater.

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 alumni weekend 2012

Alumni Weekend is only three weeks away!  Alumni who graduated in the class years ending in 7s and 2s will celebrate their reunions from Friday, May 11-Sunday, May 13, 2012 but everyone is encouraged to attend.  If you haven’t RSVP’d yet, please let us know that you are coming, by phone (610) 399-7941, by email at alumni@westtown.edu or online at www.westtown.edu/alumni.

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