As I’m writing this, I’m on a plane in the middle of the Atlantic, and all I can think about is returning to Groton. I left campus precisely eight hours ago, and even though I’m sleep deprived, have a headache, and am in a turbulent flight, there is nothing I’d rather do right now other than write about Groton.
Today marks the beginning of the end for me. My fall term of senior year flew by faster than anticipated. It’s hard to fathom that I’ll never see another fall term on the Circle. Coming in as a new Fourth Former, I never expected this day to come so quickly. My first day at Groton still feels like yesterday.
With these blog posts, I’m supposed to elaborate on my experiences at Groton every so often. It’s not an easy thing to do; this place just keeps you really busy. You’re always juggling academics, your social life, and sleep while aiming for the optimal combination of all three. This year especially, with our current circumstances, finding that balance has been more important than ever. I’ve always been an independent worker and thought that I learn the material best when studying on my own. However, this year I tried something new. I made an effort to find time outside of the classroom to collaborate with my peers. Whether it was working on a math problem set or studying for a US History test, I proved myself wrong – I actually learn better when I’m around other people.
We all have different strengths, and when we put them together, we learn from each other. When collaborating with others, I simply wasn’t just regurgitating formulas or memorizing facts anymore. We engaged in conversations beyond the scope of what we were learning and applied our own perspectives and knowledge into talking about and really understanding the course material. In the end, without even realizing, I felt more engaged in all of my classes and became closer with many of my peers.
Groton’s soul is vested within the people – both the students and faculty. Yes, Groton is known for its high caliber of academics, and to a certain extent, athletics. It is only through the people that this is made possible though. The school administration has worked countless hours to get us back on campus. The teachers, as always, put a lot of time aside to help any student out and make the distance learners still feel like part of the community. Finally, I also want to commend the student body. Everyone’s unselfish behavior and following of the Covid-19 protocols allowed for a successful fall term where we all stayed healthy.
We were also blessed with consistently warm weather throughout the fall, which allowed us to spend quality time outside playing sports, going on a walk, or simply relaxing. In addition, Groton’s Student Activities Committee organized a wide range of activities for students to engage in on Saturday nights. We had a movie out on the Circle, trivia night, s’mores, and a few collective dorm activities. Overall, even though we had these new restrictions on campus, Groton didn’t feel too different. I’d be willing to bet that everyone already misses it at least a little bit.
I cannot wait to be back in less than two months. I have no doubt that we’ll manage to make winter term as great, if not better than the fall. Until then, I’m looking forward to spending as much time with my family and taking a few weeks to relax. Looking out through my window right now, I see a black sky lit up by millions of stars. When at Groton, it’s easy to forget about the world outside of our little bubble. In a universe of infinite uncertainty, I feel blessed that I can call Groton home with certainty.