Concord Academy is known for its world-class faculty, passionate students, and nurturing community. Looking back on my CA experience as a senior, I feel that the respect I showed to my peers was reciprocated, and students and faculty would go above and beyond to show their kindness in this community. Even though certain aspects of CA are easily taken for granted, the compassion students and faculty display is something that I deeply value. This was unfamiliar to me at schools I previously attended.
Over my years at CA, I made friends and connections not just with students, but with teachers, coaches, and staff members. CA surrounds you with positive individuals that are selflessly invested in others’ success. When I first entered CA, I felt the most comfortable hanging with kids that I knew from my fall sports team. However, it is also important to branch out and meet new people. Years later, I find some of my closest connections in this school are with students that, in the beginning, I convinced myself I had nothing in common with.
One of the things that made me feel the most comfortable at CA was making it a point to connect with the upperclassmen. These older students checked in on me during my first couple of weeks at CA, and they later became my older brothers and sisters on campus.
Manoli Gakidis ’24 shares the same view. “My favorite aspect about CA is how welcoming and helpful the upperclassmen are,” he says. “This is unique and not something you see everywhere.”
Furthermore, forming a diverse group of friends made me feel more integrated into the community in the first few months. This in turn made it easier for me to relate to different people in numerous social circles.
At CA, I have been heavily involved in classes, clubs, leadership roles, and sports. I quickly found a home on the boy’s junior varsity and later varsity soccer team. For me, playing sports gave me an outlet to socialize outside the classroom, which allowed me to create even stronger bonds within the classroom.
However, do not feel pressured to play sports to fit in; CA is not like that. Instead, do things that you are passionate about. You will find yourself making more authentic and genuine connections when you partake in an activity that you enjoy.
One of my good friends, Ketan Gardner ’24, comments, “My favorite aspect of CA is the support you receive and how accepting people are. Not only did this aspect help me feel more comfortable during my freshman year, but I also learned a lot about the people around me, including some of my best friends.” As you enter the school next year, never hesitate to reach out to other students if you need anything. I look forward to seeing you in the halls next year and maybe even on the soccer field. Feel free to reach out to me if you need anything or just want to chat; my email is email@example.com.