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Impact in 2020 Philanthropy has always been a fundamental part of Aiglon’s identity – and it played a crucial role this year as our school adapted, and thrived.

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elcome to the inaugural issue of our annual Impact Report – a publication which looks back over one of the most unusual years in Aiglon history. Yet despite the challenges there have been many constants. Our distinctive culture, educational approach, and natural setting are second to none. But, for me, there are two additional factors that continue to really set our school apart. have an outstanding scholarship programme that sets recipients on a path to success at university and beyond. Looking back as I conclude deep your support for these initiatives runs. reinvested into the student experience, while philanthropy – whether service, in support of scholars or the school itself – is a fundamental part of our identity. Therefore, this impact report attempts to document, report, and celebrate the impact philanthropy has had, most visibly in the success of the past academic year. scholarships, carry out our ambitious campus masterplan and allow the College to go beyond its operational needs to provide a truly exceptional experience.

more about this in the pages of this report. Finally, gifts bring our community together. In March, we asked you to contribute to the Aiglon Emergency Relief Fund to provide a challenges. You stepped up quickly, funding remote learning needs continued with their education – wherever they were in the world. It all speaks to a third factor that sets Aiglon apart – something I could never have guessed until I came up the mountain – that we are part of a remarkable and resilient community. The Aiglon community

The impact of philanthropy goes far beyond Aiglon – to scholars, their classmates and their families

overcame them. Thank you for making this possible. Reid Alan Ching Director of Development and Alumni Relations Reid can be contacted at: r.ching@aiglon.ch.

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ALUMNI GIVING

A helping hand Robert Liu (Alpina, 1968) says that his giving has more meaning when it supports organisations he connects with and knows well.

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oving from urban Hong Kong to a hamlet high in the Swiss mountains was quite an experience for the young Robert Liu

were talking about! I visualised it as something like tank tracks…” Robert soon adapted. Skiing and trail hiking became lifelong loves, along with language skills: he picked up his French again gave me quite a few things that I got to take along with me.”

strongly about, such as Black Lives Matter, Amnesty International, separation of church and state, and freedom of religion. organisations that I know well, or that connect with me,” he says.

heartwarming to see that she was totally accepted by everyone, was a very economically elitist school. I remember talking to Richard wonderful to see it come to fruition.” Robert says he also appreciates the huge contribution that charitable was a classroom, a dining room, a study, and the morning assembly room. I remember thinking: ‘Wow, we have to assemble and

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Aiglon gave me quite a few things that I got to take along with me


ALUMNI GIVING


SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME

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SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME

A scholar’s life This Autumn, Ioana Vasilescu (Clairmont, 2020) took up a place at Cambridge University – she says attending Aiglon has been life-changing.

I love telling this story: how Aiglon found me. It started with an

no school had chosen me. Then suddenly they got back in touch. They said Aiglon wanted me, on a full scholarship! It was a big opportunity, and I grabbed it with both hands. tall, so I got a place on the basketball team. I learned how to work and communicate in a team, but also so much more. You become family. Here I am a part of a group of friends – apologising, together, for being late, again, for dinner! to the local community, and globally. On expedition with my own house, I love the feeling of being up on the mountain surrounded by little, tired kids get up a mountain, I learned how not to put my own being sensitive to their emotions. rules than other students, to be someone other people can look up best I can be. I have been allowed to try at Aiglon, and to fail. I set up a class to teach computer science to younger kids but, really, I was terrible, I had no idea how to teach. So I learned how much I have to learn about teaching, and that was valuable. I feel that in the United States, and in Romania, people are very

balance of mind, body, and spirit, and not being so focused on one thing that you forget to learn and grow.

I’ve learned that it isn’t about being the best – but being the best I can be

on top of a mountain, I learned for the sake of learning, and if I can share that with other kids, I know I will be happy in my life.”

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ALUMNI GIVING

New horizons When Omar Kalouti (Alpina, 2010) found out about Aiglon’s scholarship programme he knew he had a unique contribution to make.

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or Omar Kalouti (Alpina, 2010), giving what you can – whether

creating positive energy in the world. One day this positive energy

He thought hard, he says, about how to give for maximum impact, and realised he had a unique contribution to make. His family

the same time, he became aware that Aiglon intended to grow its

and assess potential students. The Scholarship Committee was so

than the planned single student.

students who are curious and who push their limits.” His experiences at Aiglon have helped to form his views on giving your boarding house. A sense of personal responsibility and service follow naturally.” He hopes that the new scholarship students will make the most whatever they are passionate about. But above all, I hope they will pay it forward in a virtuous cycle, that they will, in turn, use their experience to empower others in their communities and beyond.”

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It’s vital for our school to have a programme filled with high-potential students who are curious and push their limits


S U BA LHUEMA ND IE RG I H V EI NR G E


SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME

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SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME

It opens the world Layla Goldberg (Clairmont, 2020) says she has benefited from the perspective Aiglon’s scholars bring up the mountain – and into the classroom.

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ith friends from 10 countries, Layla Goldberg (Clairmont,

Building a community like this does not happen by accident. It is

school, as well as to the scholars. It opens up the world.” through the perspective they bring, but also from simply being her

to work harder, and to ask for help if I need it. She taught me that Scholars bring an extra energy and enthusiasm for school life, appreciate things more too. On High Ex up the Dents du Midi, talking, being in nature, spending the night in this beautiful place… I was so glad I went.” Layla has also travelled to Kenya with two

positive environment.”

Aiglon invests in people and offers them opportunities they wouldn’t otherwise have. It’s what we stand for

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STAFF GIVING

It’s in my DNA! Estelle Koszali greets scholars when they arrive at Aiglon – and says she feels so proud to see them change their lives forever.

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very few know that Estelle is a supporter of the scholarship fund.

from across the world – and scholars always particularly stand out.

so impressed by her, and how she threw herself into the activities. really take advantage of their time here. So I thought that I would like to support them, too.” She remembers one particular scholar who needed help sending a was so new to him. And I found that very touching. We found some rewarding, I almost cried.” on everyone involved. In April 2021, her colleague, travel secretary Geneviève Kohli, will run the Marathon des Sables to raise money

scholars challenging themselves, doing something completely new. for all of them.”

their lives forever, and achieve so much, in a short space of time.”

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I simply give what I can. It’s hard to explain! I just feel it in my heart


STAFF GIVING

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SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME

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SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME

Seize the day Today, Andrejka Bernatova (Clairmont, 2001) is a leading CFO – but in 1995, she was a Czech teenager dreaming of a school in the mountains.

winter of 1995, aged 14, I was walking with my mom in the nearby town and saw, in the distance, a boy wearing a long coat.

me he went to a school in the Swiss Alps where they spoke English. A few years later, having spent a year in the United States, I went school in the mountains. I looked it up at the library, and wrote to the Head Master, Richard McDonald, and the Head of Admissions, Mary Sidebottom. They directed me to the George Soros scholarship,

clean the dorms, babysit – anything. I wrote 50 letters. At the end of the summer, aged 16, I called Mr McDonald. I said: called me back the next day, saying a slot opened up. There was an On 4 September, my dad drove me to Aiglon in a little Skoda.

I played piano (I was terrible), I went to Kenya on a Round Square the expeditions, and the Duke of Edinburgh Gold. I was a prefect. I maximised. After school, I went on to Harvard on a full scholarship.

happening, but you start understanding how others think and feel. You can relate to anyone and I am grateful for that every day of my life. Swiss, the Scottish, the Kenyan experience. I learned to explore. In Kenya, at Starehe School, there is a banner that reads: ‘To whom to Aiglon: it is a wonderful lifelong challenge, and a responsibility to

I never forget I owe so much to Aiglon: it is a wonderful lifelong challenge and responsibility

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THE YEAR IN REVIEW

Together, we can From exam marks to Bouquetins, the 2019/20 academic year has seen Aiglonians excel against a background of global challenge, says Head of School, Nicola Sparrow.

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t has been quite a year. My fondest memory

Challenge. It was one of those glorious, hot afternoons and the whole school had gathered together. Some students completed the course in 45 minutes, and some took four hours. But doing the same thing, as a community. It was wonderful. Casting my mind back to August 2019, it seems incredible that we had almost a whole two terms on the mountain before the pandemic turned the preparing for the holidays, everything changed. There are so many stories to tell this year, and so many people to thank, and I am incredibly

unprecedented challenge. Safety was, of course, our number one concern – but having ensured this, my priority then was

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STUDENTS ENROLLED, OF WHICH 141 ARE NEW STARTERS

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65 NATIONALITIES REPRESENTED IN OUR STUDENT BODY


THE YEAR IN REVIEW

ensuring continuity of educational provision teaching and learning, but also the physical and mental wellbeing of our students. In this, Director of Learning Mr Duckling and his learned a great deal from remote learning. We are thrilled to have our students back in the classroom as the the whole community has rapidly developed its technology literacy and communication. Our digital systems have never been stronger. Remote learning at Aiglon has shown our students to be creative, passionate, innovative, and committed. We are incredibly proud of how our entire community

students, who missed out on so much. I hope these results will help to make up for Students of the Class of 2020 go on to a wonderful array of institutions all over the world. In the United States, Aiglonians are heading to Babson, Dartmouth, Duke, Georgetown, Middlebury, NYU, UCLA, were admitted to top programmes at NYU Tisch School of the Arts and Berklee College of Music. Three students secured

I am incredibly proud of the way our staff and students responded to the Covid-19 pandemic

and students will also take up places at

during this time – in mind, body, and spirit. Our success in this is borne out by our results this year. Our average IB diploma

London, St Andrews, and UCL. Aiglonians have won places at Delft University of Technology, École

six students (35% of IB candidates) achieved more than 40 points, with one perfect 45

the University of St Gallen. One student earned a place at the highly selective Economics for Alliances, Research, and

diploma, with 99% passing. These results are We submitted our IB diploma predictions before it was announced that exams would not have always sought to be honest and realistic with these predictions, and were delighted

Three students will study visual arts in Italy, the UK, and the United States. And this is not goodbye – I look forward to welcoming them back to Aiglon for graduation in the future. We will ensure limelight as soon as we can.

35 180,000

CHF

THE 2020 CLASS GIFT INITIATIVE RAISED MORE THAN

IN SUPPORT OF THE AIGLON SCHOLARSHIP FUND

OF OUR IB CANDIDATES ACHIEVED OVER 40 POINTS (OUT OF A POSSIBLE 45)

37.8 THE AVERAGE IB SCORE ACHIEVED (OUT OF 45)

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THE YEAR IN REVIEW

In fact, we are incredibly proud of our high achievers of all ages. We awarded 166

walks around lakes, along rivers and multiple

as ski instructors. At the SGIS Senior Ski Championships, 24 Aiglon ski racers in Category A and Category B, and the boys won second place. Four students competed in FIS races. One Year 13 participated in the Youth Olympics representing Turkey in alpine skiing while another earned her level 1 National Indoor Climbing award and second place for the

Hayden, even organised a virtual Sports Day. I have often thought that spirit is both the

autumn term, students summited four high

Christian, and Hindu groups. The beautiful Diwali celebration in October, including a themed lunch and specially decorated dining hall, proved to be particularly popular. Again, our students have lived their values. Locally, they have supported their community with activities including charity baking and helping elderly people in their homes. They

Midi, Haute Cime (3,257m), Dent de Morcles (2,969m), and Le Grammont (2,172m). It has been wonderful to see students following their passions and throwing

our eight competitive sport teams. Our winter expeditions included snow shoeing, bushcraft, country skiing, snow holing, and biathlon. Our students also came up with some highly creative virtual expeditions and tasks in the summer term: expeditions in gardens and

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STUDENTS BECAME QUALIFIED SKI INSTRUCTORS

important. Our strength is coming together and being together. We celebrate our diversity:

hearing stories of what Villars and Aiglon were like in the past. One group of students even got the chance to get away from campus Rosemary Hopkins with her garden! Belvedere students, helped by Ms Lumsdaine, delivered Christmas cards to the elderly. Ms Knowles and the students from

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OF MEDITATIONS WERE STUDENT-LED


THE YEAR IN REVIEW

with the help of Mrs Haynes, invited over 100 guests from the community for an ‘Elderly live music and several student performances. International service trips helped the students develop a global perspective. Mr Krueger organised the Moscow service to engage with children and adults with

Thailand. Ten students and two members of courses, while also monitoring and mapping the condition of the local coral reefs as part of the CoralWatch programme. The group removed 25 large bags of rubbish from the Klong Kloi beach area as part of the ongoing Koh Chang Trash Hero movement. In addition to service trips to Kenya, Cambodia,

FROM THE BURSAR “We have spent the summer preparing for the coming year. We will enter 2021 having ensured that our students can enjoy their learning in a safe environment, that the school is in good financial health, and that additional resources are allocated to support the whole educational experience” PAT R I C I A B R E M N E R GA D OT T I

in the Round Square conference at Emerald Heights International School, Indore, India. has been an extraordinary, challenging, and inspiring year, but we have all made it through with the spirit and commitment unique to Aiglon. We are stronger. And we are delighted to be together again.

166 BOUQUETINS AWARDED

INCOME 89% TUITION 7% OTHER ACTIVITIES 3% DONATIONS 1% SUMMER PROGRAMME

EXPENSES 55% TEACHING AND STUDENT WELFARE 20% ADMINISTRATION 17% BUILDINGS, VEHICLES AND MAINTENANCE 7% BURSARIES AND SCHOLARSHIPS 1% SUMMER PROGRAMME

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BUILDING THE FUTURE

A future campus Philanthropy has been key to Aiglon’s rise from humble beginnings to one of the most highly regarded schools in the world, says Executive Director Richard McDonald.

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giving Aiglon a permanent home would require the support of parents and friends. He enlisted an organising committee who raised ÂŁ8,000 (the equivalent of around 250,000CHF today) to buy now known by Aiglonians, Clairmont. This is a tradition of philanthropy that has continued throughout our history: in the 1990s, teaching provision in sciences, ICT and music were principally by donations. And in 2012, the Tony generosity of Aiglon families past and present. Today, we continue to look to the future. Much of the charm of our campus has been created by incorporating existing buildings into our diverse

our campus masterplan has enabled many smaller enhancements that directly impact student experience. In the past year, we have constructed new stairs at the main entrance, added landscaping and directional

constructed a new wooden terrace for students renovation of Alpina. most important focus is the creation of improved boarding facilities for boys. A new Belvedere boarding house on a site at the top of the campus is planned, which will provide accommodation of a quality and style similar to the new Exeter House. The existing Belvedere building will be redeveloped as a classroom

approval, with a target to start work in 2021. relevant and transformational ways. In line with our values, we also remain ambitious in matters of sustainability and environmental responsibility. Our campus masterplan represents an natural resources. Our most recent construction and

a new assembly building at the heart of our campus, incorporating dining facilities, addressing two core areas of collective residential school life. A student centre is also in the early planning stages, alongside improved arrival and welcome from street level. All these elements are designed to provide

with strict environmental standards to reduce negative environmental impact, which remains a core priority. and delivered, work will continue on constant improvements to the fabric, utility, and aesthetic appeal of our current facilities. These are ambitious Clairmont, and upgraded the exteriors of the reception and administration buildings, Forbes House and the Ancienne Gendarmerie. The acquisition of the Ancienne Gendarmerie, the Cossetto Chalet and Chalet and connect our campus.

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international boarding schools.


BUILDING THE FUTURE

In line with our values, we also remain ambitious in matters of environmental responsibility

Above Landscaping and directional signs make a more welcoming first impression. Left The new sitting room and kitchen on the ground floor of Clairmont House.

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SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME

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SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME

Scholars raise the bar so all boats rise Aiglon’s scholars have a profound impact on the culture and identity of Aiglon, explains Executive Director Richard McDonald.

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(pictured right) could never have imagined that – a mere three years later – she would graduate from Aiglon to pursue her dream

philosophy. Today, there are 16 fully funded scholarship students at

development. Alongside this, the generous philanthropic support we receive from within our community enables our commitment to grow and create greater impact. Why has this been a priority for Aiglon, with so many other areas of School life clamouring for constant investment both investment and innovation. Scholars raise the bar for all students, in the classroom and in their eagerness to make the most of their Aiglon

community diverse perspectives and experiences that enrich us all. Our guiding principles champion diversity, promoting national, on these core values. Removing the barriers of access to such an aspirational education is both responsible and enriching. Generations of Aiglonians have celebrated the diversity in our community as one of our most precious assets, one that sets us apart from so many of our peer institutions. Friendships were and are built not on narrow national,

That is why we continue to invest and innovate in our scholarship programme. And it is why we hope that members of our community

Generations of Aiglonians have celebrated the diversity in our community as one of our most precious assets

and inequalities, and perpetuating hope and action.

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FA M I LY G I V I N G

Opening minds Dalia Fateh, mother of Camilia (Clairmont, 2020) and Sofia (Le Cerf, 2022) says that supporting Aiglon scholars is part of their family tradition.

Our philanthropy stems from the simple message that if you

together with her husband, Hossein Fateh, Dalia focuses support in two main areas – education and health – including a scholarship at Aiglon.

otherwise be unable to attend.” spirit mission, which Dalia says resonates deeply with them both, and its unique international atmosphere. Both Dalia and Hossein are West Africa, and the United States, while Hossein was born in Iran and has also lived in Europe and the United States.

Our most recent scholar has won a full university scholarship and we are so happy to have played a part in her journey

scholarship holders themselves.” And, of course, as Dalia says, seeing scholars make the most

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Illustrations by Kate Copeland and James Olstein

scholarship holder has won a full university scholarship. She is absolutely there on her own merits because of her good grades, and her personal achievements, but we are so happy to have played a part


FA M I LY G I V I N G

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PHILANTHROPY AT AIGLON

Thank you for your continued support The support of our community sustains and encourages us as we strive to continually improve and build upon our reputation.

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t has been a truly momentous year at Aiglon. As a community, we have so much to be proud of – and to be grateful for. Thank Aiglon has grown to become one of the most highly regarded

on their laurels and past successes. We continually strive to do better, to improve. But whether scholarships or the campus uncertain economic times. At the same time, this uncertainty means our scholarship programme has greater power than ever before to change lives, as our Director of Admissions and Marketing Valerie

individual student. Scholars come here to make the most of every opportunity, certainly, but most are motivated by the desire to do more: to take their experience and use it to improve the lives of their families, their communities, and in some cases, their programme truly transformative.� As the personal stories of scholars and their classmates in this report demonstrate, your philanthropic support of the scholarship programme has a profound impact not only on the admission of girls to Aiglon in 1968 enhanced and enriched the range of the Aiglon experience, similarly scholars do the same – and so all boats rise. Simply, they make us even stronger. The philanthropic support of past generations of Aiglonians has created a scholarship programme of which we can all be incredibly proud. Now we need your support to maintain and expand this key aspect of Aiglon life. Thank you. Reid Alan Ching Director of Development and Alumni Relations Reid can be contacted at: r.ching@aiglon.ch.

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Scholars use their experiences to improve the lives of their families, their communities, and in some cases, their countries