As summer comes to a close, we Exonians are enjoying every last moment before we return to campus on September 7.  Summer has taken us all over the globe, whether our vacation took us home, on a family trip, on an Exeter Summer Program, or to a job or internship.  Hearing about what some of my classmates have been doing over the summer shows me how far Exeter’s reach truly is.  From studying physics in Tokyo, to going on an archaeological dig in France, to taking part in a service trip to Costa Rica, Exonians have kept busy while away from campus.


John's Japan Picture

Odaiba in Tokyo Bay

This summer I not only found myself on multiple college tours – the life of a rising upperclassman is truly exciting – but also with many chances to absorb information, culture, and experiences.  I was lucky enough to spend some time in Europe with my parents and, as is usual when it comes to our trips together, we spent our fair share of time in museums.  One of my favorite places to visit in London, our first stop, is the British Museum.  It is a humbling experience going there as I am always amazed by how much there is to see and learn.  Two of my favorite exhibits feature works by ancient Egyptians and Assyrians.  Other highlights included enjoying the history of Edinburgh Castle, Napoleon III’s apartments in the Louvre, and watching players tee off on the first hole of St. Andrews’s Old Course.


Friezes from the Parthenon, British Museum


Summer has been a wonderful time to spend quality time with my family and recharge the batteries, but as the beginning of the school year draws near, I am looking forward to going back to my second home, which is what Exeter has become for me.  There are so many exciting things waiting for us when we return to campus – seeing and catching up with friends and teachers, meeting the new students, going to the barbeque on our first day back, Opening Assembly, Academy Life Day, and so much more!  As a tour guide, I am also excited about the new school year bringing prospective students who would like to learn more about Exeter.  I hope to see some of you this year!

I was excited for summer to begin and now I am excited for school to resume.  Upper year – here we come!

Spring Fling

Hey everyone,

We’re slowly reaching the end here and as the weather gets warmer and warmer here in Exeter, we start having more and more outdoor events. On Saturday nights, there is almost always something fun going on and a few weeks ago, that thing was Spring Fling. Spring Fling is an outdoor concert/ dance organized by Student Council. It starts off with faculty bands, then switches to student band from the Exeter Association of rock or E.A.R. for short. After E.A.R. we had a DJ named DJ Uplifted who was very good, then E.R.A, the Exeter Rap Association took the stage before we switched to Michael Christmas, a rapper from Boston. Spring Fling is held on the steps of Phillips Hall, our English and Modern Languages building and everyone starts out sitting and relaxing on the grass in front and watching the bands.

I got there a little late, just at the start of the E.A.R bands, in which one of my friends was drumming. It was awesome to get to see him perform, especially at an event like this one. Throughout the night there were beach balls that were floating around the crowd and it was really funny watching kids try to get someone to hit them one.

Once the other band finished, DJ Uplifted came out and was very good, probably the best DJ we’ve had at a dance this year. StuCo handed out little frisbees and glow sticks at this point and everyone got up from their picnic blankets and started dancing when “The Middle” by came on. Seeing everyone jump up and start yelling along was so funny, especially since we had all been so relaxed before that. It was a great way to start the end of the year, and the weather only made it better.  

On another note, last weekend was the last game of the season for JV softball. We won at BB&N in Cambridge, MA and it was probably our most fun game of the season. On the way down, we had all braided each other’s hair on the bus and after winning, we drove back singing terribly most of the way until one of our coaches gave a speech to get us to stop. That night, we met as a team to watch A League of Their Own which just so happens to be one of my favorite movies of all time. We all brought food and hung out in our pajamas and it’s safe to say that I’m really going to miss the team over the summer.

Ingrid - softball

Enjoy your summer breaks for those of you who are finishing up soon and I can’t wait to meet all of the new students arriving on campus in September!


Biking to the Beach

Even as I write this blog post, I’m sitting on a towel down at Hampton Beach, facing the Atlantic Ocean, staring into the deep blue of the horizon . . . and doing my Latin homework translating Vergil. 

Principal’s Day (school day off) was last week, and although my backpack had my dormmates’ and my approved ‘Out of Towns’ to Boston and a train tickets, somebody changed his mind, and I unfortunately could not find a way to make my escape off campus. So, this weekend, some friends and I took to our bikes and trekked over to the beach (for the first time)! 

After an hour of hoping we were going the right way, we went over to grab lunch in a cafe, walked down to have a bit of fun in the (unfortunately very cold) waters, bought a frisbee to throw around, and ultimately fell down to relax in the warm sun.



Biking off campus is one of my favorite ways of going to have fun with friends, seeing new places, and especially today, doing my Latin homework with a change of scenery.


Whew. It has been a crazy, long, amazing two weeks. Last Wednesday began my big Idaho adventure. I had to go to the post office in the morning to get my passport renewed for the summer, which was surprisingly easy. The man at the Exeter post office was very nice and helpful. After that, I grabbed a coffee from D2 (a coffee shop in the town of Exeter) and returned to my dorm. There I made some final edits on an essay before turning it in to my teacher. Next I had an interview for the DRAMAT board. I performed a rap about each of the current board members.

Right after that, I grabbed my suitcase, met the Mock Trial A Team in front of the science building, and headed to the airport. There were eight of us on the team: three lawyers, four witnesses, and one time keeper. We flew first to Salt Lake City, Utah for a connection. When I got off the plane, I got a call saying I had made it onto the DRAMAT board which was very exciting. My teammates and I bought Auntie Annie’s pretzel poppers in celebration. The flight to Boise, Idaho was short, and we headed to our hotel. Our three coaches/advisors met us there: Walter Stahr, a former Exeter teacher who moved to California and skypes in to our meetings, Kyle Skinner, the former Mock Trial State Coordinator for New Hampshire, and Jared Bedrick, the current State Coordinator and a licensed attorney. The meeting was brief and we were all instructed to go to bed as soon as possible. We slept two to a room in very nice accommodations for which we were all very grateful. My roommate and I each quickly went to bed.

The next day, Thursday, we had two scrimmages, each as the Defense. We learned a lot from both, and returned that evening to work on our case. Before our long night began, however, we attended the Pin Ceremony. Basically, every year, the states competing at nationals bring little goodies, or representations, of their state. New Hampshire’s was a pin in the state’s shape, Georgia gave away stuffed cows, and Maine brought Chocolate Lobsters. The get-together was held in a courtyard and they served delicious food. It was quite an interesting experience: a bunch of mock trial nerds running around and meeting each other. We met some hilarious people and made some friends. After we ate, we decided we better head back to the hotel to work. Our co-heads stopped at whole foods and picked up fresh fruit and snacks. The night was long and full of rewriting, but we managed to get to bed at a decent hour.

On Friday we arrived at the courthouse at around 8. We passed through security and headed up to our room. Once we arrived at the very nice courtroom, we spread out: the witnesses practiced sitting on the stand and our lawyers did vocal warmups in the back of the room. The opposing team arrived and we learned they were from Nebraska. They also happened to be the defending national champions. Obviously, we went into this trial pretty stressed. Our coaches calmed us down. They told us to continue doing what we’d been doing and we’d be fine. And you know what? We didn’t lose to them by that much! We held our own and most importantly learned a lot. After team lunch we had our second trial, which went much more smoothly. This time we were up against the team from South Korea. One of our team members had gone to the same school they came from, and knew many of the same people the South Korean team knew. When the trial ended we returned to the hotel and went swimming for a little bit. Then, Mr. Stahr took us to a team dinner at a really nice seafood place.  After dinner we walked to Ben & Jerry’s and brought ice cream back to the hotel. Again, we stayed up working.

Saturday went much like Friday, and despite feeling confident about our trials, we all returned to the hotel exhausted. We had very little time to relax however, because we soon had to head over to the awards ceremony. Our coaches informed us it would be semi-formal, so we did our best to dress nicely. When we arrived at the ceremony, the first to go was Cowchips the Cowboy Poet, who read some bizarre but amusing poems. The team awaited eagerly to hear if we had won any Lawyer or Witness awards, as well as if we had placed in the top 10. As names were read first of individuals and then of teams, it became increasingly clear we would not win any awards. Much of are team was heartbroken. Most decided to return to the hotel, but a few of us chose to stay and go to “the dance.” Every year, after the awards, there’s a dance resembling a Bar/Bat Mitzvah dance. All the kids who have been working hard all weekend unwind and dance. Nobody was really dancing, we were all just laughing at ourselves. After awhile we decided we should return to the hotel to be with our team. When we got there, we joined a circle of people snacking and bonding. We stayed up that night talking.

In the morning, we learned where we had placed 35th out of 48th. Obviously many of us were disappointed and upset. The co-heads called the rest of the team down and we sat together at breakfast:

“We know you’re disappointed, we’re disappointed. But that number is not an accurate representation of what we did and how we performed this weekend. Whether it was a judging issue or whatever, forget it. Just remember how well we did. It’s easy to focus on the negatives, but we don’t want that to change how you feel about yourselves and this team. You guys should be insanely proud of yourselves, I know we are.”

With much “aw-ing” and smiles, we headed to the airport. The way back was quiet, consisting mainly of long naps. We had become a real team ready for next year. Nobody really minded what place we came in – it was still an amazing experience.



Tea Season!

Spring term is finally here, and so are teas! Most dorms host these teas during this time of year, offering students a time to get dressed up and do fancy things. Both boys and girls dorms hold these events, and members of the host dorm can invite any other student. Since the snow is gone and the sun is out, outdoor lawn games like horseshoe and spike ball are played. A major plus to these events is the food. Most dorms go all out with cheese plates, chocolate fountains, sparkling cider, and pastries.

Teas also give students another chance to get to know more people, especially those of the opposite gender. Teas are social events, and are definitely treated as such. I was able to meet a variety of new interesting people through the numerous ice-breaker games held at each tea.

Coming from Arizona, this was definitely a treat to dress up in a blazer and take pictures. Showing everyone from home how fancy I’ve been acting this term has been quite entertaining.

Conor - Tea 1

This school is a prep school after all, and it can be fun to act the part.

My dorm Soule Hall, hosted our own tea last weekend at a dorm-mate’s house. We added our own twist to our event, making it a pool party of sorts-establishing our dress code as blazer+swim trunks or dress with a swim suit underneath. Overall, it all made for a pretty lively occasion as you can tell from the pictures.

Conor - Soule Soirée 1

Conor - Soule Soirée 2

Spring is here… finally!

Is it the end of the school year already? Where is the beautiful sunlight and clear skies then? Oh there they are, 2 months late. Spring has finally arrived here at Exeter. It’s been hiding beneath the heavy rainfall, and concealing itself from the alums who just had their reunions. It was very rainy last week, but the sun is starting to peek through. The season brings newly budding trees and short-sleeved shirts.People are starting to go outside again, even though it’s a bit later than we are used to in the school year.


Beautiful Sunsets!

More people are riding their bikes and there’s a SpikeBall™ tournament going on now. Which is a game where you basically hit a ball into a net, and the other team has to catch it before it hits the ground. More frisbees are hitting trees and poles while the person who threw is blaming the delicate breeze. Exeter is heading towards my type of weather: Texan. In the south, cold is 60 and it’s not hot until it hits 100. Exeter is starting to cozy up as the spring season hops from out under the rock that was being pounded by rain. Oh Exeter, why must you hide your beauty for so long? Oh, and the volleyball team is killing it, 7-1 season record. New England Championship here we come!

Ori - Volleyball

Holi 2016

Hello All!

I hope everyone is feeling the rush of Spring as we only have four more weeks left in our term! In honor of the last term before the summer, many annual events are approaching around the corner hosted by Student Council or by other student organizations on campus. This past Sunday, the Hindu Society hosted its annual Holi event: a Hindu spring festival common in India and Nepal. Located in front of the Academy Building, brightly colored powder is thrown everywhere on the lawn, and students spray one another with water guns. It’s always a lot of fun to come with friends and throw colored powder in their hair (as it stains the skin for a couple of days following). This event is open to every student on campus, and many show up in clean, white t-shirts before being stained with a muddle of colors!

Below are some pictures of the event taken by Diana Davidson and Chiara Perotti:

Holi1   Holi2













Have a great rest of Spring term and keep an eye out for all the fun outdoor events hosted by Student Council: Spring Fling (an outdoor event with music and food) Block Party (the last outdoor school dance) and the many upcoming Dorm Teas hosted by many residential halls!

Politics Come to Exeter

Hello all!  I hope you are enjoying some warmer weather than we are here in New Hampshire.  It has been a fun first half of spring term with lots of dances, performances, and other fun events, including a personal favorite of mine – crew races!  One process that just came to its conclusion on campus was the Student Council elections.  Each year, in addition to voting on class and dorm representatives, the student body elects an executive board for Student Council consisting of a president, vice president, and secretary.  As is to be expected, those elected will help lead council meetings and act as liaisons with faculty and the administration in the coming year.  We witnessed an exciting campaign this year with many posters, videos, endorsements, a debate, and even a rally!

Continuing with the political theme, one of the perks about Exeter is that we are located in New Hampshire.  “Why is that exciting?” you may ask.  Being in the first primary state, it means that Exeter is abuzz with presidential candidates and media outlets for a few months every four years.  Fortunately, many of the candidates who came to town worked their schedules around PEA’s class schedule, whether they planned to or not.  I was fortunate enough see Rand Paul, Carly Fiorina, Ted Cruz, and Marco Rubio, and some of my friends were able to see Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Donald Trump, and Jeb Bush.  No matter your political affiliation, it is such a unique and interesting experience being able to see these political figures in person, shake their hands and hear their ideas.  Their arrivals also brought many discussions to campus in dorms, classrooms, and clubs such as the Democratic and Republican clubs.  Though there are disagreements on policies, this election has highlighted one of my favorite parts of Phillips Exeter – the fact that there are so many people from different places, with different backgrounds and opinions who can bring new ideas to the table, Harkness or otherwise.



Photo taken by my wonderful proctor, Caroline del Real ’16