Day and Boarding; Grades 6-12

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Liam Krivcov , Class of 2017

"When I consider my Pennington experience, two words stand out the most for me. They are "Community" and "Opportunity."

Community comes to my mind because Pennington has this amazing way of providing a safe and supportive community among its students and faculty that allows students like me to feel free to explore and experiment with our interests.

Opportunity comes to mind because, as students, we are very fortunate to have available the many opportunities that are provided by the School through which we can pursue those interests. For me one of those unforgettable opportunities has been the Global Studies certificate program. This one opportunity has led to some of the most memorable experiences of my life.

When I entered Pennington I had visited maybe five states and had never been out of the country. I was significantly shy and despised public speaking; I was unsure of myself, insecure, and had no idea what interested me. My dad urged me to get involved with the community, so I decided to apply to the Global Studies program and luckily got in. My first eye-opening experience was a week-long global leadership seminar at the University of Pennsylvania, where the focus was U.S./China relations and how that relationship has an impact on the rest of the world. This seminar made me realize the importance of understanding the world around me.

Last spring, I traveled to London, England with a theater troupe from Pennington and was able to see a lot of theatre and even perform Shakespeare in Canterbury. I was able to stay with a host family for two nights; it was great to talk to them about the same issues and problems that we talk about here. You don't truly get other people's perspectives by reading an article or listening to one quick interview on the news.

I have also had the opportunity to participate in a cultural arts exchange program that was launched last year with the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, China. Five of us from Pennington spent two weeks studying various Chinese art forms including calligraphy, drawing, kite-building, and how these arts play an important role in Chinese culture. This was truly a life-changing experience for me.

These experiences make me really understand the role my community plays in the global world. I am able to think about life in a different way, a way that helps me understand who I really am and what I have to offer the world. I have a genuine appreciation and curiosity for the world in which we live and I feel well-prepared and ready to begin the next phase in my life."