BANCROFT Spring/Summer 2010
BANCROFT Bulletin |
2 News Features Greg Mortenson... Earth Day... Volleyball Wins... Community Service Abroad... Latin Students Travel... Studio Visit BANCROFT SCHOOL
2 Director of Institutional Advancement Liz Siladi
6 Educate Act Be>GREEN ■
Editor-In-Chief / Director of Marketing and Communications Matthew Barone
Bancroft looks to lead in a sustainable and healthy environment
Editor / Assistant Director of Alumni Relations and Communications Lynn St. Germain Director of Development Laurie Bowater
10 Amol Sharma ’96 uses
Administrative Assistants Lydia Barter, Marjorie Orr
his Bancroft Lessons
Design Linda Dagnello
Covering India as a reporter for the Wall Street Journal
Editorial Assistant Deena S. Madnick Contributors Russ Campbell; Karen Fuller; Joan Killough-Miller; Matt Robinson Bancroft Bulletin is published biannually by Bancroft School, 110 Shore Drive, Worcester, MA 01605-3198. Issues are published fall/winter and spring/summer and mailed to all known alumni of Bancroft School as part of the benefit of their having attended the School. Bancroft Bulletin provides a medium for the exchange of views concerning Bancroft School affairs; news about the School and its alumni; and editorial content that relates to the shared and diverse experiences and interests of Bancroft alumni. On the Cover: Children in the Kindergarten gather to watch the release of Monarch Butterflies in Fall 2009. Photo: Lynn St. Germain.
12 Reunion 2010 28th Annual Alumni Award Recipients
Photos: Russ Campbell
Dear Bancroft Friends: I had occasion recently to discuss with alumni the many changes that have occurred during the last eleven years that I have served as headmaster at Bancroft. Our school has evolved in ways too many to recount in this space. A more diverse student body better reflects the ethnic diversity that characterizes our greater Worcester community. With the building of the McDonough Center and the acquisition of 100 Shore Drive, our campus has expanded to serve better the needs of our students. Too, our educational program has expanded, particularly in the area of technology. And our emphasis upon employing the techniques of â€œAll Kinds of Mindsâ€? has led to an application of the most recent developmental understanding of how children learn to our classrooms and pedagogy. In sum, by living our mission of creating a diverse community of good people who are life-long learners, teachers of others, and global citizens, we are working also to create a sustainable future not only for our students, but for our world. Sustainability has become the watchword defining so many efforts in our School and in our broader world. From our Earth Day activities this past April that brought together our students and faculty, Grades K through 12, to concentrate on their role in preserving our environment, to our daily efforts in recycling, the paper we choose (see back cover), gardening, maintenance, and the dining hall, we have taken the lead to create a greener future. But sustainability means more than care for the environment. In a broader sense, our school affords numerous travel opportunities for students to understand their world through travel around the globe: Turkey and Greece, Japan, France, China, and elsewhere. Our expanded community service efforts engage our students who come face-to-face with the challenges of creating a sustainable world. Bancroft students learn to live purposeful lives of commitment and compassion toward othersâ€”lives of service to others. Success in achieving these goals speaks to what sustainability means in its truest sense. I hope you enjoy reading this edition of the Bancroft Bulletin. As always, we welcome your feedback and insights, and invite you to visit our beautiful campus on Shore Drive.
Scott R. Reisinger Headmaster
Peace and Hope Begin with Education Author of “Three Cups of Tea” speaks to Bancroft's community 2
ew individuals have the ability to inspire an entire community, but that is exactly what renowned author and humanitarian Greg Mortenson achieved on his visit to Bancroft in April. Through riveting assemblies that detailed his courageous journeys abroad, Mortenson captured the attention of students, faculty, parents, and friends in a conversation of hope, optimism, and peace. Speaking directly to the student body, Mortenson explained the importance of education and the ways increasing literacy throughout the world would have the power to impact everyone’s future. The world-traveler and humanitarian knows something about diplomacy having spent the last 15 years working in the remote regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan. Through persistence and respect of local customs, Mortenson has been able to convince some of the most hostile leaders in this region to embrace education— especially for girls. As executive director of the Central Asia Institute (CAI), he has contributed to the construction of 131 schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan, educating 58,000 students including 44,000 girls. “Today’s children are the force that will achieve peace,” said Mortenson. As he addressed the Middle and Upper School assembly Mortenson said, “I am thrilled to see 100 percent of your hands go up. I’ll have to change my talk and mention Bancroft School now because on average around the country only about 60 percent of students engage in community service.” Much of Mortenson’s message is about empowerment. His goal is to build the schools, infuse them with the supplies and educational materials needed, then empower the local community members to run the schools. He told the story of the AKA-rifle armed Taliban leaders who visited a
school built by Mortenson’s group. Upon seeing the playground, they immediately dropped their weapons and threw themselves on the swings. The CAI is now building a school in their village that will include a playground. Bancroft students in all divisions were familiar with Mortenson’s story through the reading of his books, “Three Cups of Tea,” and “Listen to the Wind” (the children’s version). This spring, Bancroft’s fourth grade students were inspired to collect pennies for Mortenson’s Pennies for Peace, an organization established to give our children a way to actively participate in creating global peace. During a special address to the Lower School, students presented Mortenson with a check for $695.30, representing the 69,530 pennies they raised to buy pencils and school supplies for the CAI schools. “Mr. Mortenson sends a strong message to our community,” says Head of Lower School Jyoti Datta. “His emphasis on individual involvement shows that even the youngest child can make a difference to the world.” “It was an honor for all of us to meet this remarkable man whose life’s work has been to promote peace through understanding,” says Cultural Coordinator Hannah HallAlicandro who spent the last year planning for this visit. “He continues to inspire us all to make the world a better place.” Mortenson has called young women “the single biggest potential agents of change in the developing world,” describing this phenomenon as “the Girl Effect.” It echoes an African proverb he often heard as a child growing up in Tanzania, the son of teachers: “If you educate a boy, you educate an individual; but if you educate a girl, you educate a community.” www.ikat.org www.penniesforpeace.org
Earth Day Celebration
tudents, faculty, administrators, and parents took part in an annual tradition to join their peers from around the world in celebration of Earth Day on April 22. All three divisions of the school participated in a number of activities including special assemblies, area clean-up efforts, artistic stimulation, tours of local green facilities, and guided nature walks throughout the campus woodlands. The keynote speaker at a special assembly was Caitlin Connelly, former technical advisor to the United Nations and current green energy outreach consultant for the city of Worcester. She delivered a speech that encouraged listeners to do more and teach others to be green. “Through outreach I am working with the city to empower its leadership and various neighborhoods to make changes in the way we live in order to help sustain our future.” Bancroft has taken the lead in sustainability efforts by incorporating appropriate initiatives throughout the institution’s operation. The Environmental Club is very active on campus having helped to organize this year’s Earth Day festivities along with several other school-wide programs. Tiffany Soobitsky ’10, co-chair of the Environmental Club, feels strongly that each member of the community has a responsibility to do their part to be green. “Together we can make a huge difference,” said Soobitsky. “There is no better feeling than witnessing the entire campus come together to share in this special experience.”
Volleyball Wins 145 Straight
his year, Bancroft’s girls Varsity Volleyball captured their 11th straight Eastern Independent League (EIL) Pool A Championship with a victory over The Governor’s Academy. As Coach Gary Patch and the team say goodbye to eight senior players, it is a bittersweet day for the three senior captains who have been on the team since freshman year. Seniors Megan Anderson, Gabrielle Trotter, and Clara Zinman have been playing together on Bancroft Volleyball teams since sixth grade, and attribute both their fundamental skills and their love of the game to the foundation created by their Middle School Coach Russ Enlow. “He really loved the game and made it so much fun to play,” says Zinman. Coach Patch continues that dedication to the game with intensive practices and warm-ups, while making the game fun.
The girls are modest in talking about their own achievements. All three are premiere players in both the EIL and in Club Leagues. Anderson and Zinman will play for Middlebury and Trinity respectively, and Trotter, who was named EIL Volleyball Player of the Year for the third straight year, opted to go to the University of Pennsylvania where she plans to train with the team over this summer. As a team, Bancroft’s Varsity Volleyball has an amazing record of 145 consecutive wins—setting another new state high school record. “It’s about the love of the game, not the winning.” It is this sense of team that has contributed to their success and it’s the people and the traditions the girls will miss the most—the matching hair ribbons (started by a former teammate and continued by Anderson who hopes another teammate will continue it), Tacky Tuesdays, and their “Ace” cheers. Although they were sad to see the season end, they are excited about moving on to college, playing with a new team, and learning new traditions. What advice do they offer to their teammates for next year? Trotter and Zinman agree that Anderson says it best, “Don’t worry about the record and the pressure of winning. Just play the best you can and play because you love to play volleyball.”
Community Service Abroad
an one 13-year old really make a difference in peoples lives? That is what eighth grader Neha Shankar wondered when her father, a doctor, asked her to join him on his medical trip to the Dominican Republic. She shared the answer to her question at the Middle School assembly as part of her eighth grade forum—“Yes! One person can make a difference.” Neha agreed to join her father, a small group of medical personnel, and three other teenagers on the eight-day trip to the island with the Jessica Ramey Catholic Charitable Foundation. They arrived in the city of La Romana, each person carrying
suitcases loaded with medical supplies, medicine, toys, shoes, and clothes, and then set off with three local people to open medical clinics in the bateyes. Neha explains that a batey is a small, remote village near the sugar-cane fields, often with no plumbing, electricity, or sewer system. Once villagers learned of a clinic, lines of people awaited treatment. Neha helped organize the people waiting, taking their blood pressure and other relevant information. She told how the people they treated were very poor, but very appreciative. Throughout the week,
the group traveled to over 20 different bateyes providing medical clinics. “It was a lot of fun,” explains Neha. “The best part was meeting the people, they were all so friendly. The hardest part was when we ran out of clothes and toys for the children. We were only supposed to give them one item that they needed because we only had what we could carry in our suitcases. So when a child needed shoes and a shirt, it was hard to say no—and sometimes we just couldn’t.”
Turkish and Greek lessons captivated group
xegi monumentum aere perennius. (I have built a monument more lasting than bronze). Over spring break Upper School students from the Latin program packed their language and history
textbooks bound for a 10-day immersion experience. Sixteen students from Karen Fuller’s Latin classes travelled to Turkey and Greece to witness the cultures, histories, and traditions of these two ancient lands. Andrew Hitzhusen ‘11 found the people of both nations incredibly friendly and focused. “What really impressed me was their eye contact. I asked our guide in Turkey a question and was completely unprepared for her intense eye contact.” Students travelled to Istanbul, Troy, Pergamum, and Ephesus in Turkey. While in Greece at the close of their adventure, students toured Athens, Delphi, and Cape Sounion. Fuller, who has escorted Bancroft students abroad in the past, found this experience to be “totally captivating.” Hitzhusen had his most memorable moment at the Pergamum theatre in Turkey, which is situated high in the mountains overlooking the modern city below. At the top of the
theatre on a perfectly clear day, the accomplished performer was overcome by his surroundings. “I needed to test these acclaimed acoustics. Fresh from our spring musical, a number of us performed our scenes impromptu. Each word, expression, and breath was perfectly clear. We loved every minute of this beautiful place.” Bancroft has a long history of incorporating travel abroad as part of the entire language experience. “Our students begin studies in French during Grade 1 of their Lower School program,” said Nicky Puccio, department head for foreign language. “A group of students from the Middle School just returned from Arles, France where their studies in the classroom were put to good use immersed within French households. Travel abroad for our students is a critical component of the entire global language experience, which we are very proud to bring together each year.”
Hands-on ceramics studio
he spring semester brought students in Mary Edwards’ Ceramics II course to a working artist’s studio for a daylong workshop. Located in Worcester, this old sprinkler factory has been renovated into modern studio spaces for artists, including Edwards, a noted ceramicist. The factory is home to glass blowers, jewelry designers, painters, and photographers-to-collage artists who mix various materials. At this professional studio, appropriately called “The Sprinkler Factory,” students were allowed access to the process of a working gas kiln that fires in a reduction atmosphere. At Bancroft, students are typically exposed to a mid-range level of glazing, called an oxidation atmosphere, which produces fairly predictable results. Using a gas kiln creates more interesting variations. Taking almost 15 hours to process with constant monitoring to regulate gas and oxygen levels, their projects were added to the kiln reaching temperatures of 2,300 – 2,400 degrees Fahrenheit.
At certain scheduled points during the firing, Edwards and fellow artist Barbara Wilson add a soda carbonate solution that is sprayed into the kiln for special glazed effects. “I remember being a curious artist and not really understanding how they worked,” said Edwards. “I believe an appreciation for the arts is important and it is my responsibility to share these professional experiences and environments with these fresh minds. Students work hard to develop their creative inspirations, and I expect them to make mistakes just as a professional artist would. You are expressing yourself uniquely and that’s what makes us individuals.” In addition to learning the operations of a gas kiln, students toured the entire facility, met with several artists to discuss their works and the industry, and put final touches on their ceramic pieces that were on display at the Upper School Art Show, May 20.
Feature photos: Liz Siladi
Educate ■ Act ■ Be > GREEN Bancroft looks to lead educational institutions in maintaining a sustainable and healthy environment By Joan Killough-Miller
n mid-March, there’s not much green to be seen in New England. Bancroft School is on vacation—but physical plant director Peter McKone is not. With the classrooms vacant, it’s a perfect opportunity to give the school a deep cleaning and freshen up some areas with new carpeting or a fresh coat of paint. It’s hard to miss the ladders and machinery or the commotion as carpet is laid and floors are stripped and waxed. What’s easy to miss is what’s not there: toxic cleansers, carcinogenic compounds in the paints and carpet adhesive, and energy-hogging light fixtures. The National Association of Independent Schools’ (NAIS) “Principles of Good Practice” encourage members schools to “incorporate environmental sustainability into all aspects of their institutions, including curriculum; professional development; student and residential life; physical operations, procurement, construction, and renovations; and dining services.” At Bancroft, those principles are more than lofty goals or superficial gestures. They are deeply woven into every aspect of the institution’s operations. For McKone—who holds a degree in environmental studies from Clark University as well as a construction supervisor’s license—sustainability means maintaining health. “That includes the health of the children, of the employees and visitors, the health of the environment, and the economic health of the school,” he states. To that end, he scrutinizes every corner of the campus to find new ways to enhance safety, eliminate waste, and lessen environmental impact. Some of his best successes are invisible—and that’s a good thing. “The two most vulnerable groups of people here on campus are young kids—because of the size of their bodies, they’re more susceptible to chemicals—and the employees who are using chemical products day in and day out,” he explains. That’s why indoor air quality is such a big priority for him. “The first thing I did was educate myself about green cleaning processes.” He and his staff
now use only certified green products, purchased in concentrated form and mixed using a metered system. At Bancroft, green initiatives can be as small as a superefficient light bulb—or as large as the regional electric grid. Tucked away in the utility room of the McDonough Center, a specialized web server hums along, monitoring the school’s electrical usage as part of an ISO New England demand-response program run by EnerNOC, a Boston-based energy company. “It’s like a thermostat on steroids,” McKone remarks, as he watches the screen readout. The programmable system allows him to fine-tune heat and air conditioning for each zone, day and night. During the summer, he can power down unoccupied areas and make that capacity available to other parts of the New England power grid. “We receive payment for that availability,” he says, “and the detailed monitoring of our usage has helped us reduce our consumption. We’re still making adjustments to drive that down even further.” The aim of the EnerNOC program is to avoid brownouts in the region, while reducing the need to build additional power plants.
Students inspect a piece of wood from a local tree that was infested by Asian longhorned beetles.
continued on page 8
continued from page 7
of Crows.” Eighth graders brought the knowledge gained through the everpopular “sludge lab” along on a tour of a state-of-the-art recycling plant. The experts brought in for Earth Day included Bancroft parents and alumni who are working in environmental fields. In addition, Caitlin (L) US and LS students collaborate on Earth Day. (R) Environmental Club advisor Brian Kondek chats Connelly, delivered the keynote adwith member Bonnie Lindner '10. dress on behalf of John Odell, who is manager, energy efficiency, and conservation manager for the city of Worcester. Connelly, a former technical advisor to UN environmental programs, now serves as a When students return in the fall of 2010, they will be Green Energy Outreach Consultant for the city’s “Energy greeted by photovoltaic panels covering the roof of the for a Greener Tomorrow” program. She noted that BanMcDonough Center. The 125 kW system will supply a croft students can play a key role in driving the demand quarter of the electricity needed for the McDonough and for green energy services and products. She was proud to Fuller buildings, which amounts to about 10 percent of have alumnus Curtis Reid ’06, an intern in her program, the school’s total usage. Richard Chase, a former Bancroft present his work to Bancroft students on Earth Day. “I parent and director of sales, marketing, and IT at Future think this was empowering for both Curtis and the stuSolar, is assisting on the project. Future Solar develops dents,” she said. “It shows that we can all make a differcreative solutions for schools and other tax-exempt orence, especially Bancroft graduates.” ganizations that can’t take advantage of tax incentives for Odell said, “Bancroft School is ahead of the curve alternative energy. The contract also includes a small with its work to promote sustainability from within. Its stand-alone photovoltaic system that can be used as a list of sustainability actions is quite impressive and places teaching tool. the school in a solid position to champion the cause. It is From corn-based compostable plastic cups for the poised to lead the way for other schools, both public and sports teams, to organic locally grown produce in the private, on sustainability. I look forward to working with cafeteria, and even some school-grown herbs and vegetathe Bancroft School administration to share their story bles, Bancroft has a lot to be proud of. The kitchen comthroughout the community and beyond.” posts scraps to fertilize ornamental plantings, and all new The Environmental Club works throughout the plantings are native species. school year to motivate their peers to become more enviIt’s all part of a global realization that what happens ronmentally responsible. The Green Cup Challenge—a at Bancroft doesn’t stay at Bancroft. McKone will not renationwide competition among independent schools to sort to pesticides or chemical fertilizers, even for the playlower energy usage during the month of February— ing fields, which have to stand up to hard usage. brought measurable results. Club members created and “Everything you put down ends up in Indian Lake,” he observes. As chair of the Worcester Conservation Commission and a member of the Indian Lake Watershed Association, he’s trying to encourage Bancroft’s Shore Drive neighbors to coordinate our green efforts collectively. He also shares his knowledge with other schools through online forums, and he has been a speaker for local business operators. In April, when students returned from their break, the Environmental Club went into full gear, finalizing plans for Earth Day, with their advisor, science teacher Brian Kondek. This year, the program expanded well beyond the campus, with guided nature walks in the surrounding woodlands and lake area. Older students went further off campus, for tours of WPI’s new super-green East Hall dormitory, and local pollution-control facilities. The activities chosen for each grade were designed to tie directly into the curriculum. For example, fifth graders Physical plant director Peter McKone plants peas on campus grounds. went on a bird walk, which related to their play, “A Murder
Students were asked to dip buckets into Indian Lake in order to collect and identify organisms present.
posted brightly colored signs beside each light switch, reminding students and teachers to “Pitch in—Switch off.” “All these initiatives—even the slogan—were thought up, and designed, and executed by the kids,” says club advisor and science teacher Brian Kondek. “I just help them find ways to execute the plan. Many high school kids have the idea that they are very limited in what they can do, but these kids feel very empowered.” He adds, “Since those little signs went up, I am about ten thousand times more conscious about turning off lights.” During the Green Cup Challenge, Bancroft reduced its electrical consumption by 6,372 kilowatts and reduced CO2 emissions by 8,538 lbs—not an easy feat, given the energy-conserving measures that were already in place. Collectively, participating schools shaved 1,254 kW from their electric bills, and eliminated 1,680,000 lbs of CO2 emissions—the equivalent of taking 162 cars off the road, planting 764 trees, or changing 30,000 incandescent bulbs to CFLs, according the official website, www.greencupchallenge.net. “At first some people were resistant,” says club coleader Johanna Okerlund ’10 of the Green Cup campaign. “They’d make jokes and say, ‘It’s just a light bulb. It’s not going to make a difference.’ But this year we lowered our meter readings by 5.9 percent. That’s a really good number. It gets people excited about the fact that they can make a difference with such simple actions. I think if the
club is energetic enough, and we show that we care, and why they should care—that makes a difference.” Early on, the club sat down with McKone to learn what Bancroft is already doing to become more sustainable and how they could reinforce those efforts. They’ve taken on battery and ink cartridge recycling efforts, which are open to Bancroft students and their families. They’ve also taken responsibility for educating the campus to make the cafeteria’s recycling program work, by offering instruction at assemblies and even stationing themselves in the cafeteria to help everyone get things into the right buckets. “Our goal is to give our students the scientific intelligence to understand the issues that will affect them down the line,” says Kondek. “I know they’re not all going to become scientists or environmental engineers, but maybe they can write a letter to their congressman—or even become one!” Environmental Club member Malavika Mehta sums it up this way: “I think for the coming generations, it’s not whether you can or can’t create change—it’s a matter of having to. It’s a necessity. We have to address the environment, by nurturing better habits in ourselves and incorporating them into our families and lifestyles.” Joan Killough-Miller is a writer at Worcester Polytechnic Institute and a Bancroft parent.
Every day, Bancroft graduates make headlines in all sorts of fields. Yet few of them actually get to write them. Amol Sharma is one such special Bancroft alumnus.
AMOL SHARMA TAKES HIS BANCROFT LESSONS TO THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WORLD!
By Matt Robinson
s one of six reporters who cover India for The Wall Street Journal, Amol Sharma has been writing about a variety of business-related topics, including the economy and politics, since 2009. “So far it has been terrific,” Sharma smiles. “I’m getting to meet the people who are shaping one of the great stories of our time—the rise of India!” From the halls of Delhi’s ministries to the boardrooms of Mumbai, Sharma says, “there’s a feeling that this country is slowly but surely taking its place as a giant on the world stage.” And just as millions of Indians “move up the ladder” in their lives, so too is Sharma moving up among the ranks for the Journal’s award-winning team of journalists. Having graduated from Bancroft in 1996, Sharma went on to Tufts University, where he studied political science. After about a year at a New York Internet consulting firm,
Sharma decided to “plunge into journalism” and moved to Washington, D.C. “I had worked on the college paper,” he admits, “but didn’t have a lot of experience.” However, armed with the dedication and drive that had helped see him through 12 years at Bancroft, Sharma persevered and landed a coveted internship with CNN. While there, he began writing freelance for various publications, including The National Journal and an ethnic paper called India Abroad and eventually at Congressional Quarterly as a researcher and reporter. In 2002, Sharma was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship that took him to his ancestral homeland of India where he filed stories for a number of domestic publications including The San Francisco Chronicle, Far Eastern Economic Review, and Christian Science Monitor. “I wrote about economic development, immigration, technology, and many other issues,” Sharma recalls.
When he returned to the United States, Sharma also returned to CQ to be a full-time Capitol Hill reporter specializing in technology. “Covering Congress was an amazing experience,” he says. “It was the perfect training ground for thinking big and learning to wrap your head around complex issues.” Speaking of complex issues, he was soon hired away from CQ by The Journal, where he began his career as a technology reporter in the paper’s New York headquarters. Four years later, it was back to India, this time to stay. These days, Sharma focuses his reporter’s eye on the many global brands that are “pursuing the growing…market here with ever-increasing intensity.” Sharma cannot help but notice that, while many in India are advancing, many more are stuck in a rut. “All the heady growth numbers and optimism can’t mask the challenges that are right in front of you every day,” he observes, noting that a full one-third of the population lives in poverty and is unable to afford basic necessities of life without huge government subsidies. He also notes how “rampant corruption” has given unscrupulous politicians the ability to “slow important national projects for their own personal gain.” When asked whether he considered his own personal gain when he started his journalistic life, Sharma says that his career change came more from a desire to interact with other people in a meaningful way. “I enjoy meeting new people and asking them tons of questions about what they
do, where they’re from, how they think,” he says. “I love jumping into a new subject …and racing to get up to speed on it so I can ask my subjects probing, smart questions.” In his five-plus years as a professional journalist, Sharma has covered stories on such diverse topics as global water conflicts, hot air ballooning and telecom regulations. And while he has enjoyed and been enriched by such varied experiences, Sharma admits that there is a “trade-off” involved. “It’s very hard to become an expert on anything,” he says. “but you learn to be conversant in a lot of areas, and I really like that!”
As he is still able to keep an eye on local and global politics, Sharma has gained a great deal without giving up much. As a journalist, he has also been able not only to report on what is going on but also its impact. “I like the idea of writing a sober, well-crafted, well-researched piece that influences the debate,” he says. “Hopefully, some of the work I’ve done over the year has influenced some…in the halls of power.” Speaking of influences, Sharma credits his eleventhgrade AP English teacher, Mrs. Ulbrich, with influencing his writing style and his desire to pursue and perfect it. “She took an interest in my work and exposed me to the beauty of the craft when done with care,” he says, admitting that he came to writing “a bit late.” “Until then, I was convinced I would be a math and science guy for life,” he says, recalling his beloved calculus and biology teachers Mr. Barrow and Mrs. Pearson and Mrs. Carlson. “I figured I would end up becoming a doctor.” In pursuit of this early dream, Sharma got up very early (4:30 a.m.!) during his junior-senior summer in order to go on rounds with a cardiothoracic surgeon at UMass Medical Center. “The last thing I imagined was that I would end up becoming a professional writer,” he says. “It wasn’t even on the radar!” Yet, as all Bancroft students know, life has a way of taking unexpected turns. “There’s a temptation,” Sharma advises, “starting in high school and intensifying in college, to simplify your choices to a few seemingly ‘safe’ categories. Don’t. Be open to all kinds of potential career paths and you’re more likely to find the one that’s a good fit. It might take some trial and error, but that’s okay.” Fortunately, as all Bancroft students are, Sharma was prepared to make the most of new opportunities. He even credits his senior year English teacher, Mrs. Tsang, with advising him as to how to handle deadlines (a skill that continues to serve him well everyday). “I learned I could go through this process, suffer the moments of despair and emerge victorious,” he says. “I wasn’t a very good writer…but I think I was getting the building blocks.” Years later, Sharma continues to build with and on those blocks, just as his sisters Dr. Sheena Sharma ’89 and Attorney Sherri Sharma ’94 did. “It was great to be part of the Sharma family dynasty,” Sharma laughs. “My oldest sister Sheena graduated when I was in Grade 5, so we didn’t overlap much, but some of my earliest and best memories of Bancroft are from the days when she used to drive us to school…My other sister, Sherri, was two grades ahead of me and was an academic superstar…so that was a bit daunting to live up to, but I did my best.” Apparently, Sharma’s “best” has been pretty good indeed! Matt Robinson is an educator and journalist in Boston, MA Photos: (Opposite page (L)) Sharma is visiting a slum in Lucknow, India where many residents make a living creating drums. (Opposite page (R)) Reporting from Kutch, India, Sharma is investigating a story that explores how India is relying on Chinese workers for infrastructure expertise. (Image page 11) Sharma is working in Hardoi, India reporting on poor Indian families struggling to afford food costs.
Alumni At the 28th Annual Alumni Awards dinner in May, Bancroft’s Alumni Association presented the following individuals with distinguished awards as part of the 2010 Reunion weekend celebration.
Agnes E. Kull The Robert W. Stoddard ’23 Award for Outstanding Community Service
Agnes Kull has been a distinguished fixture in the Central Massachusetts non-profit and business community for more than 30 years. Ms. Kull is Chairman of the Board of Greenberg, Rosenblatt, Kull & Bitsoli, PC, the oldest and largest independent accounting firm in Worcester. She has more than 30 years of experience in public accounting with a specialization in estate planning and she leads the firm by example in supporting the community with philanthropy and service, while encouraging clients to do the same. She was the first woman Chairman of the Massachusetts Board of Public Accountancy, the governing body of the CPA profession, where she served as a volunteer for ten years. Ms. Kull was the 1996 recipient of the Katharine F. Erskine Award for Business/Law, an annual award from the YWCA of Central Massachusetts to women whose accomplishments have helped improve the community, especially for women and girls. She has also served a number of Worcester non-profits for several decades. She currently serves as Treasurer, Executive Committee member, and Board member of Bancroft School, Worcester Regional Research Bureau, and Music Worcester, Inc. She is a Trustee Emeritus of Worcester Art Museum, having served as Treasurer, Executive Committee member, and Trustee for nine years. She is also a past Treasurer and Board member of YWCA of Central Massachusetts, United Way of Central Massachusetts, UMASS Memorial Foundation, and Memorial Hospital, a past investment committee member of Greater Worcester Community Foundation and a past Board member of American Cancer Society. An immigrant to the United States in 1952, and a resident of Worcester since 1972, Agnes Kull delights in having made this community her home and that of her children, Karin and Tara, and grandchildren, Sabrina and Ross, both current Bancroft students.
Kendall L. Kennison ’85 The Esther Forbes (1907) Award for Distinguished Professional Achievement Kendall Kennison is a musician and composer of more than three dozen solo, chamber, orchestral, choral, solo vocal works, and one short opera. His music has been heard in concerts throughout the eastern and mid-western United States and his piano music has also been featured in recital programs in Venice and Naples, Italy; Moscow, Russia; and Zagreb, Croatia. Since 1998, he has taught all levels of music theory and composition at Goucher College in Baltimore, Maryland where he is currently an Associate Professor and Chair of the Music Department. Numerous performers and ensembles have requested pieces from him and he enjoys composing music that has been inspired by literature or visual arts, which has led to several collaborations with other artists. In addition to his teaching duties at Goucher, he also coordinates the Ars Viva concert series, which has brought guest artists to Goucher from Russia, Italy, Germany, Austria, India and all around the United States. After graduating from Bancroft in 1985, Kendall attended Vassar College where he earned an A.B. degree in music in 1989. An M.A. degree in music theory and composition from Rutgers University followed in 1992. He then studied and served as a teaching fellow and teaching associate at the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University where he received a D.M.A. in composition in 1996. Kendall lives in Baltimore with his wife, Debbie, and their three children.
Jennie E. Howland ’90 The Young Alumni Achievement Award As a student at Brown University, Jennie Howland thought she wanted to be a wildlife veterinarian. A trip to Tanzania in 1993, and the poor medical conditions she found there, inspired her to change her focus to helping the underserved. In 2003, while a student at UMASS Medical School, she founded the Malaika Project, a multi-disciplinary community-based effort in Nyamuswa,Tanzania. Working in partnership with local people, an international collaboration of volunteers help to improve living conditions from the ground up to reduce mortality, improve literacy and help the local economy. Jennie thinks of Tanzania as her second home, and she tries to return annually as ongoing Coordinator of the Malaika Project. As a primary care physician for Hilltown Community Health Centers in Worthington, MA, Jennie focuses on transformational medical practices while caring for an underserved rural population with limited access to specialists. She leads the Patient Center Medical Home transition for Hilltown, part of a 14-site statewide pilot project to empower patients to help improve their quality of care. She is implementing electronic medical records for three regional health centers and she is passionate about outreach for elders and expanding services for those with the least accessibility. A graduate of Bancroft (1990), Brown University (BA in biology, 1993), Boston University School of Public Health (MPH, 1998), and UMASS Medical School (MD, 2004), Jennie is also an outdoor enthusiast who has hiked the Appalachian Trail. She lives in Westhampton, MA with her husband, Justin, and their dogs.
Visit a photo gallery of the entire weekend’s festivities on our web site at: www.bancroftschool.org/reunion.
In Memoriam Alumni
Martha Prouty DeNormandie ’39 February 25, 2010 in Lincoln, MA at 87
Francis H. “Chuck” Dewey III ’36 March 12, 2010 in Worcester, MA at 91
President of the Class for her junior and senior year, Mrs. DeNormandie graduated from Bancroft and then Wheelock College. She lived most of her life in Lincoln, MA where she raised her family and was active in the community. She was predeceased by her husband, Senator James DeNormandie, and her son Newton. She leaves six children and their families.
public schools, helping ELL students attain their college dreams. She leaves her husband and three children, Paul, Anthony, and Mary Fuller ’01, as well as several brothers and sisters including Mary Driscoll ’72, Elisabeth Driscoll Mendelsohn ’73, and Eileen Driscoll-Norman ’75.
Bronson Fargo ’75 January 15, 2010 in Happisburgh, England at 52
Georgia Pierpont Foster ’57 December 23, 2009 in Naples, FL at 69
Francis H. Dewey III, known as Chuck, was a distinguished member of Bancroft’s community for over 80 years as a student, parent, grandparent, and trustee. After graduating from Bancroft’s 8th grade, Mr. Dewey went on to graduate from Deerfield Academy and Williams College. He served as a Captain in the US Air Force during World War II, from 1942-1946. He returned to Worcester and had a distinguished career as president of Mechanics National Bank (the fourth consecutive F. H. Dewey to do so), and vice president and treasurer of Williams College from 1973– 1980. In recent years, he served as chair of the George I. Alden Trust. Mr. Dewey was an active member of the Worcester community, serving on several boards including Bancroft School, Clark University, Memorial Hospital, and American Red Cross. He was predeceased by his wife Frances Smith Dewey and is survived by his four children, Nancy Dewey ’70, Morgan Dewey ’73, David Dewey ’76, and Stephen Dewey and their families; and his siblings Henry Dewey ’42, Dorothy Dewey Gilman ’39, and Elizabeth Dewey Marangoni ’31 and their families.
Virginia MacFarland Dalrymple ’38 December 21, 2009 in Sun City Center, FL at 89 Mrs. Dalrymple graduated from Bancroft and then Wellesley College where she was a member of the Durant Society. She had a life long interest in literature. She and her husband Eugene lived in Port Clyde, Maine and spent time at their cottage in Marshall Point, wintering in Florida and sailing in the Caribbean. She leaves her husband and children.
Mrs. Foster attended Bancroft from 1948– 1955 when she left to attend The Masters School in NY and then Smith College before marrying Torrey Foster. She received her B.A. from Washington University in St. Louis, MO. Mrs. Foster was appointed Vice President of Key Bank in Ohio, and then started private banking for Key Bank in Florida upon moving to Naples in 1995. She retired from banking in 2005. Mrs. Foster was very active in the volunteer communities where she lived, and held director, officer, and leadership positions in many nonprofit organizations. In 2007, she was honored with the Woman of Achievement Award for Collier County, FL. Mrs. Foster leaves her husband and children and their families, as well as her mother, Georgia Pierpont, and siblings Virginia Pierpont Marriner ’60, Lulie Pierpont Eide ’67, Richard Pierpont ’62, and Tom Pierpont ’76.
Michael Rubin ’67 September 23, 2009 in Uxbridge, MA at 59 Dr. Rubin attended Bancroft until 1963 then graduated from New Hampton School in NH, before graduating from Worcester State College (B.S.), Anna Maria College (M.A.), and receiving his doctorate in Psychology from Antioch New England Graduate School. He worked for several years as a licensed psychologist before becoming Director of Psychiatric Emergency Services in the Blackstone Valley area. There he was instrumental in developing an Urgent Care Model for providing mental health services for patients of primary care physicians unable to find adequate responses of the mental health needs of their patients. Dr. Rubin leaves his wife and children.
Catherine Driscoll Fuller ’71 January 13, 2010 in Millbury, MA at 56 Mrs. Fuller graduated from Bancroft and Syracuse University. She then lived in Madrid, Spain where she studied Spanish literature before marrying Curtis Fuller and touring the world with him as he performed in international jazz concerts. In 1984, they returned to Massachusetts where she transferred into the education field, working for Assumption College and the Worcester
Mr. Fargo graduated from Bancroft School and then Williams College where he was president of the student government and an avid rugby player. After college, he held various positions in companies around the world, including general manager in Africa for Farrell Lines, Inc., assistant vice president for Equator Bank, Ltd. in Lagos, Nigeria, and his most recent position as sales manager of ACIS Company, for which he traveled extensively to New Zealand, Scotland, Poland, and the US. He lived in Happisburgh, England in his home that overlooked the North Coast where he became chairman of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution. He also served on the Board of Overseers of the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, MA and was a trustee of the Hart Foundation. Mr. Fargo was a dedicated Bancroft volunteer and long-time member of the Alumni Council. He was predeceased by his father Bronson H. Fargo and his brother Robert Fargo ’77. He is survived by his wife and four children, his mother Barbara Fargo, and his brother Matthew Fargo ’79 and family.
Extended Community Cynthia Daly January 30, 2010 in Bedford, MA at 53 Mrs. Daly taught math in Bancroft’s Middle School from 1988 to 1995. She earned her B. A. in education from Skidmore College, and had most recently worked for the Bedford, MA school system. Mrs. Daly was a member of the Coalition of Bedford Youth and a member of the St. Elizabeth Seton Church parish council. She leaves her husband and three sons.
Window on Bancroft 1
MS student rises in the stands during a Bancroft basketball game.
Seniors gather with their Grade 1 peers in the LS Technology room as they work on the Book Project.
Students act out on The Green during a warm spring day.
4 Grade 2 teacher Bob Beliveau works with two of his students on a story quilt.
A group of LS students walk back to class after spending time at the Prouty Library.
6 Seniors relax on The Green with music. 7
Grade 9 physics students conduct an experiment during a lab session.
Grade 9 trio performed at the Playathon.
9 Maureen Cabral's Kindergarten celebrates the letter "M" during a 'Magnificent Munch'.
10 Coach Ryan Belanger leads his JV basketball team during the Bulldog Bedlam.
Non-Profit Org. U.S. Postage PA I D N. Reading, MA Permit No. 193
110 Shore Drive Worcester, MA 01605-3198
CHANGE SERVICE REQUESTED
Environmental Savings for the Spring/Summer 2010 Bulletin How much paper did we use? 2,372
6 trees preserved for the future
What is the postconsumer recycled percentage?
17 lbs water-borne waste not created
2,539 gal wastewater flow saved
281 lbs solid waste not generated
Is it coated or uncoated? uncoated coated
553 lbs net greenhouse gases prevented
4,234,020 BTUs energy not consumed
Published biannually by the Communications Office, the Bancroft Bulletin is a Magazine for 3,000+ alumni and friends of the school from arou...