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Academy News

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December 2014

Posted Friday, Dec 19, 2014 
Last week, SJA received a commitment from the Freeman Foundation to fund this year's Academy trip to Japan, which includes stops in Tokyo, Nagasaki, and Kyoto. This program, begun in 1994, has allowed over 100 SJA Japanese language students and dozens of faculty members to visit Japan each spring.
Posted Friday, Dec 19, 2014 
In Chapel early this week, I spoke on the importance of rededicating ourselves to living out Rachel's Challenge—Rachel Scott's five challenges to which we committed ourselves at the start of this year: 1. Look for the good in others and see past the surface 2. Set high goals and dream big 3. Surround yourself with positive influences 4. Speak and act with kindness in order to heal and not hurt 5. Start a chain reaction of kindness and compassion I added to those challenges two thoughts from Deepak Chopra, reflecting on how we can bring peace to our lives and our world during this holiday season: 1. Be at peace, relinquishing all resentments and realizing how much you are loved 2. Share your peace, working with others to create a more peaceful world
Posted Friday, Dec 12, 2014 
Our fall sports teams had very successful seasons. Here is a comprehensive list of the honors the individual players received.
Posted Friday, Dec 12, 2014 
On Friday, December 5, Capstone Day 2014, I wore my Constellation Tie. A gift from my daughter, it depicts the various constellations in a somewhat random pattern. I told the students that I wore the tie for two reasons. First, I wanted to see if any Capstone student thought the lines on my tie spelled out a hidden message (something like, "you are going to fail"); if so, they needed help. Second, I wanted to let them know that on Capstone Day, perhaps more than any other day, I feel as if I am standing among a constellation of stars. I told them, "When we gather again on Monday, I am confident I will be able to say my tie was not the only thing full of stars on Capstone Day—because of your efforts, I will be able to truthfully say this whole campus was filled with stars." My confidence, it turns out, was well founded.
Posted Friday, Dec 5, 2014 
St. Johnsbury Academy's Faculty Speaker Series concludes for the semester on Monday, December 8, at 7:00 p.m. at the Library in the Mayo Center. SJA Creative Director Diego Melendez will talk about "The Idea Behind the Idea," exploring the creative industry, design thinking, and strategies pioneered by successful companies like Apple and Nike. The series, created by Assistant Headmaster for Academics Jeffrey Burroughs, showcases the extraordinary talents, interests, and expertise of the St. Johnsbury Academy faculty and staff.
Posted Friday, Dec 5, 2014 
I spoke this Monday as part of our faculty Fireside Speaker Series on the role of power in language. As part of that presentation, I spoke about how President Obama had used and was using his position of power, and in particular language, to speak about the events in Ferguson, MO this fall. At the end of my presentation, Dale Urie '86, a former Social Studies teacher (now Department Chair for our Health and Wellness Department), asked how I would advise the President to respond to the recent decision by the Grand Jury. After thinking for a moment about how unqualified I was to give such advice, I responded that I would use the power of the President to define this event as something other than simply a racial event or a law enforcement event or a socio-economic event; I would define it as a community event.


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