On Friday, March 25, the Class of 2022 came together as a class for the annual Senior Transition Seminar. Through a variety of activities and presentations led by Alexa Holmes, Wilcox Fellow for Health and Wellness and Community and Equity team member, and Ndanu Mutisya, Student Activities Coordinator, students were able to connect more deeply as a class and became more prepared for life after Concord Academy.
The day began at 2:30 p.m. on the chapel lawn with a fun kick-off group game, called Captain’s Calling, which the class got incredibly invested in. About the senior’s participation in this group game, Mutisya said, “I think it’s telling of you all as a class of how willing you were to just jump in and play a game that was super ridiculous, but a ton of fun.”
After this fun kick-off activity, the seniors moved into the PAC for their first session on consent and sexual misconduct, led by Alexa Holmes. This session was primarily focused on the definitions of assault and consent, as well as various scenarios in which seniors were asked to determine whether or not consent had been given by holding up a red, yellow, or green piece of paper.
The senior class was then joined by the alumni association for a special CA tradition, mug decorating, in which each senior is given a Concord Academy mug on which they can collect their peers’ signatures. The alumni association was also kind enough to provide CA-themed cupcakes for seniors to snack on during this activity.
After everyone’s mugs had been signed, seniors went back to the PAC for a second session session on consent and sexual misconduct, primarily focused on setting boundaries and using assertive communication in upholding those boundaries. This session was followed by pizza from Comella’s in the Ransom Room, where seniors were given time to chat with one another about all they had learned in the first few sessions and fuel up for the remainder of the seminar. Seniors then returned for the next session in the seminar, focused on drug and alcohol safety. This year, Holmes and Mutisya decided to alter the session on alcohol a bit, shifting the focus away from fear tactics and onto safety. “As somebody who works doing health and wellness, fear-campaigning is not an effective way to educate people, but giving people skills and advice that help them do so safely is,” noted Holmes.
Following this session, Holmes and Mutisya led a discussion on understanding different perspectives, allowing us to better understand how we can create deeper connections with those we will encounter beyond the CA community. Holmes and Mutisya spoke about their own experiences of encountering people with different backgrounds in college and encouraged us to be open to and understanding of others perspectives. “I went to high school in a place like CA that is very predominantly white,” shared Mutisya, “So I think it’s important to have a place where as a senior they tell you, ‘Hey, when you go to college it’s going to be a bit of a culture shock’. You’re going to meet people that you’ve never ever laid eyes on before and you’re going to meet people who you’re exactly like. It’s going to be a huge array of people.’ I thought we needed to make sure coming into the conversation that we were all conscious and aware.”
The night ended with a Q&A with Holmes and Mutisya, where students wrote down questions on pieces of construction paper, crumpled them into a ball, and threw them at the stage where Holmes and Mutisya were standing. This was a fun way to get seniors engaged, while also allowing them to ask anonymous questions. Holmes and Mutisya also gave a mock chapel, sharing their advice as recent college graduates. Their “chapel” summed up all that the seniors had learned throughout the seminar, and it was a great way to end an informative evening, where the class got to come together to learn about life beyond this community.