At Holderness, we see leadership differently. We see it as a behavior and work to intentionally integrate leadership and service into all aspects of our educational program. Every year, student leaders are chosen by the entire community based not on their popularity, but on their conduct and character —a longstanding tradition that celebrates fairness, initiative, dependability, and empathy. Our motto, “For God and Humankind,” calls us to lead by serving, and to see a true leader as a servant of others. At Holderness, there is a tradition of seeing leadership as ultimately about the empowerment of others.
In April, the entire school, including faculty and staff, voted on every single rising tenth and eleventh grader on core leadership values that we consider the traits and behaviors of strong leaders (fairness, initiative, dependability, and empathy). The ballots were tabulated and the president, vice president, house leaders, floor leaders and all job leaders were selected based on their tabulated scores on the four qualities. This process was designed by Holderness students in 1950 and continues today.
The community came together for our annual leadership chapel on May 2nd. The leaders selected by the school were announced during the chapel and begin their service to the school today. These new leaders will serve with faculty and staff in running the school and learn first-hand what it means to be an identified leader.
Watch this video from last night’s chapel and hear from our outgoing School President Dylan de Vries ’19 and our President-Elect Abby Vieira ’20. We congratulate all of our new leaders and thank our senior leaders for the commitment and work they’ve given to the Holderness community.
Albert Bierstadt, the German-American painter renowned for his landscapes of the American West, came to the White Mountains to capture its simple yet overwhelming beauty. What came to life through nearly a decade’s worth of work was The Emerald Pool, a massive oil-on-canvas monument to the natural majesty of a hidden swimming hole along the Peabody River in the Pinkham Notch. Recounting The Emerald Pool, Bierstadt said, “I never had so difficult a picture to paint, as this White Mountain subject the Emerald Pool; my artist friends think it my best picture and so do I.”
At Holderness we deliberately build community through the people we bring in and programs we support. Today I want to share one story about people who showed us what it means to be a mission-centered community and talk about one unique program that is hitting a milestone.
Kicking off its 141st year, Holderness School welcomed new students to campus on September 5th. Under blue skies and surrounded by the cheers of joyful Senior Leaders, 114 new students eagerly joined the Holderness School community. The day was filled with smiles as new students and families unpacked their cars and turned dorm rooms into a home away from home.