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Spring innovation event inspires creativity, exploration.

New look, same school.


#MYMARLBOROUGH Want to see more? Follow us on Instagram at @marlboroughlife for a behind-the-scenes look into student life and learning at Marlborough. Got a great photo you want to share? Tag us @marlboroughlife and you might just see yourself in our next issue.

Visit to find direct links to all of our social media channels.


02 FRESH START Meet the Class of 2023 and hear from seniors.

04 INNER STRENGTH Zoe Wasserman ’18— 100 hours of service and still volunteering.

08 IGNITING INNOVATION 2017 Celebration of Innovation event showcased creativity and collaboration.






Class of 2017 speakers reflect on their journey together.

A Wrinkle in Time takes center stage.

14 WHAT IT MEANS TO BE MARLBOROUGH New look, new year, same spirited and relatable Marlborough.

Meet Community Outreach Program Head Pamela Wright.

ON THE COVER Marlborough students start the school year with momentum—and a few laughs. EDITOR Ashley Myers-Turner Carly Rodriguez

20 Q&A Sophia Danielpour ’19 shares insights about Girl Up.

PHOTOGRAPHY Leah Fasten Momentum Magazine is produced at: Marlborough 250 South Rossmore Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90004 DESIGN Mission Minded

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Fresh Start Welcome Class of 2023



Nearly one-third of 7th graders have sisters who currently attend Marlborough.

89 girls



The number of different schools from which our 7th graders come.

CAN YOU FEEL IT? The energy of 89 girls fuels the Class of 2023. Out of the 89 students, 19 are the only girls from their former school joining Marlborough. Rock on!



One isn’t a lonely number at Marlborough. The Class of 2023 boasts one set of twins.



This year’s 7th grade class hails from 33 different zip codes—that’s nearly one zip code for every three students!

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View from the Senior Seat

With most of my requirements out of the way and with the variety of electives for seniors, I have a lot more freedom in terms of the classes I take this year. I’m especially excited for Asian-American Literature and Honors Research in Science.



As the Class of 2018 settles into their new life as seniors, the Class of 2017 is now spread out across 22 states, the District of Columbia, Canada, and Scotland.



The Class of 2018 had 44 student-athletes compete during the 2016-2017 school year. Good luck to all of the Mustangs competing this season!

— Niki Bellon ’18

I’m most looking forward to all the fun privileges seniors have, like having our own sweatshirts and the senior lounge. — Emma Price ’18

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Each day that I volunteer I hear parts of people’s stories, and I am so inspired by the strength of the patients and their families. — Zoe Wasserman ’18

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Inner Strength Zoe Wasserman ’18 recently completed 100 hours of service, and is currently volunteering at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. While Zoe’s responsibilities primarily consist of transporting patients around the hospital, it’s the interaction she is able to have with them that makes her work so rewarding. “I love talking to the patients, whether they are happy to be bringing home a newborn baby or are recovering in physical therapy. I really enjoy seeing the inner workings of the hospital and being able to give each patient personalized attention.” Zoe credits her volunteer time with important life skills, including the ability to strike up conversations with many different people and gauge someone’s mood, but the most important lesson she has learned is about the strength that lies in all of us. “Humans are so resilient. Some patients have had or have virulent illnesses that can wreck them physically, emotionally, and economically, yet they still are able to trudge forward because they have their family around them.” n

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See our complete matriculation list and where other members of the Class of 2017 are this year at

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Growing Together At Marlborough’s 125th Commencement last spring, speakers from the Class of 2017 reflected on the lessons they learned and friendships they forged through their journey together.

Despite all of our various intersecting and diverging identities, my fellow classmates, we share this experience forever. Even in difference, there is commonality. — Alden Fossett ’17, Senior Class President, Harvard University

Marlborough has given me a place to grow since I was 12, but now it’s time to say goodbye. I leave knowing that the school I love will continue shaping already bright, charismatic girls into fiercely smart, confident women. I can’t wait to meet all of them as they join the Marlborough family. — Grace Atlee ’17, Student Body Co-President, Princeton University

Marlborough is home. Marlborough is where I have a family. Risking change is what allowed us to be here and risking change is now about to take us away. But if change opened up the chance for me to have something as amazing as the community I have standing with me, I’ll embrace it. — Alyssa Yoon ’17, Valedictorian and Student Body Co-President, Yale University

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Igniting Innovation The 2017 SPARC: A Celebration of Innovation showcased the talent and creativity of student programmers, designers, artists, entrepreneurs, roboticists, and collaborators.


uring the 2016-2017 school year, Marlborough’s STEM+ classes saw a surge in student interest, with the robotics team doubling in size and the creation of a brand new Entrepreneurship curriculum. Additionally, these classes moved into an innovative new space in the ARC (Academic Resource Center) that students named the SPARC (Special Projects in the ARC). Acknowledging the growth of the STEM+ programs, Dean of Student Life Ms. Regina Rosi Mitchell, Math and Coding Instructor Dr. Darren Kessner, and Science Instructor and Robotics Coach Mr. Andrew Witman brainstormed opportunities for students to showcase their work. This led to the creation of a new annual event, SPARC: A Celebration of Innovation.

FIRST ANNUAL EVENT This first SPARC event took place on campus in May of 2017, welcoming close to 200 parents, students, alumnae, teachers, and friends. The evening kicked off with introductions and advice from a panel of business leaders, including Anne Enna (Founder and Managing Director of Beal Private Capital), Peter Kim (Founder and CEO of Hudson Jeans), Anne Reifenberg (Editor of Bloomberg News), Jean Shim (Founder and CEO of Rubies + Diamonds), and Ben Yeh (Senior Investment Manager of Panda Restaurant Group). Following the panelists’ words of wisdom for our future leaders, guests chose from a variety of student-led activities. Coding students shared games and design projects.

During the event, students shared games and design projects they created in their coding class.

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Seeing students get excited about showing their projects and making pitches is really what it’s all about. — Math and Coding Instructor Dr. Darren Kessner

Eighth graders presented research posters on topics including sleep and social media. Robotics captain Niki Bellon ’18 and her teammate Amanda Yuen ’18 guided guests through a design-thinking project building “tasty towers” using marshmallows and spaghetti or gumdrops and toothpicks. The robotics teams brought out their robots for a demonstration and scrimmage. “One of my favorite moments of the evening was when Amanda Yuen ’18 took the microphone and got everyone in the ARC to come over to the robotics area

for the robotics demonstration and scrimmage,” says Dr. Kessner. “Seeing students get excited about showing their projects and making pitches is really what it’s all about.”

SPARC TANK COMPETITION Our panelists then became judges of the “SPARC Tank” competition, where entrepreneurship students pitched their ideas for new products and services. Emily Yee ’19 won the SPARC Tank competition for her teen dating app, Swoon.

“I think Emily stood out because she pulled in anyone that would listen to her pitch and she welcomed feedback,” says Ms. Rosi Mitchell. “She really embraced that aspect of the entrepreneurial process.” Emily’s wholehearted dedication spoke to the judging panel as well. While the panel felt that there were several very strong pitches, Emily’s was compelling, demonstrating that teens were interested in the app, it was feasible to implement, and it could have a monetary return on the investment.

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INSPIRING NEW EVENTS Looking ahead to future innovation events, Ms. Rosi Mitchell would like to both refine and expand the SPARC Tank portion by making it an application process. If a student’s proposal is accepted in the fall, she could be paired with a mentor who would guide and support her through the pitch process, with top pitches possibly receiving a scholarship to a Los Angeles entrepreneurship event or a long-term mentorship opportunity. Additionally, Ms. Rosi Mitchell, Mr. Witman, and Dr. Kessner would like to expand the SPARC Celebration to include students’ art and design work, presentations by Honors Research participants, and additional classroom projects, such as the Scratch Coding projects by physics students or the marble roller coasters built by 8th grade science students.

“There are so many natural connections. One of my big takeaways this year is that as an entrepreneur you don’t need to be an expert developer, but you do need to know the language and have a basic skillset,” says Ms. Rosi Mitchell. “Or, you might develop an awesome app, but you also need skills in entrepreneurship and design to market it. I’m all for breaking down the silos so we can continue to discover these connections.” The team would also like to look outside of Marlborough and invite other female students from across Los Angeles to collaborate and problem solve together. Ultimately, Ms. Rosi Mitchell says, the SPARC Celebration should be a dynamic evening where students can share their passions. “We want students to be excited to take these classes, because learning should be fun.” n

It takes a lot of courage to put your ideas out there. These were some of the best presentations I’ve ever seen students give. — Dean of Student Life Ms. Regina Rosi Mitchell

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Question Everything A dark force pervades the universe in a state of endless consumption, forcing planet inhabitants into ugly conformity.

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29 100+ 6x5

Number of student cast and crew members

More than 100 light and sound projection cues occurred during each production.

To prepare, the cast and crew rehearsed six days a week for five weeks.

A WRINKLE IN TIME The powerful guardian spirits, Mrs. Which (Tess Inderbitzin ’21, Imogene Wolodarsky ’20, and Ellie Atlee ’21), Mrs. Who (Miranda Simon ’20), and Mrs. Whatsit (Sabrina Brumlik ’20), know that only with the help of three Earth children can the evil be penetrated. Meg (Olivia Meyer ’20) and Charles Wallace Murry (Josie Willems ’22), with the help of their friend Calvin O’Keefe (Fiona Tarses ’20), travel through time and space on an incredible journey to save their father from this darkness. Will the children be able to withstand a trial that asks them for their greatest strengths, their deepest vulnerability, and their most tender gifts? These are the questions that were posed and answered in Marlborough performing arts’ inspiring spring 2017 production of A Wrinkle in Time, adapted for the stage by James Sie from the book by Madeleine L’Engle. n

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What It Means to Be Marlborough Marlborough’s new look and feel capture the essence of our brand personality. Here’s how we unpacked what it means to be Marlborough.


arlborough is a school on the move. Never resting on past successes, the 2017-2018 school year began with an exciting change, the unveiling of our refreshed brand. The updated messages and vibrant new visual identity are the culmination of an extensive, two-year research and design process.

at Marlborough, and to help others understand what makes Marlborough unique and special.

At our core, we’re the same, yet there’s something a little different, a little bolder, a little brighter. Simply put, we are more clearly articulating who we are and what we aspire for our students, alumnae, families, faculty, and staff.


The essence of our school remains— an independent, urban day school serving a diverse group of young women through a superior collegepreparatory education in an environment imbued with high ethical values. Yet, it’s time to look and sound more like how we feel

We partnered with Doing Good Marketing, independent school communication specialists based here in Los Angeles, to help us determine our brand architecture—our roadmap for how we articulate internally who we are and who we hope to become.

Through thoughtful research, insights, conversations, collaboration, and strategic consideration, we landed on a brand strategy that conveys who we are and captures the essence of a Marlborough girl.

We started our exploration by teaming up with collaborators known for their expertise in working with independent schools.

Marlborough is confident, respected, spirited, relatable, and feminist—just like Marlborough girls.

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We interviewed more than 30 community members, conducted student focus groups with juniors and seniors, and held two allday workshops with a committee composed of parents, employees, Trustees, and alumnae. Doing Good Marketing then helped us finalize messages to articulate our brand to external audiences. For example, we determined that Marlborough’s brand personality— how you would describe Marlborough if she were a person (and which also happens to be how many would describe Marlborough girls themselves)—is best described as confident, respected, spirited, relatable, and feminist.

From there, we teamed up with Mission Minded, a branding firm that works exclusively with independent schools and nonprofit organizations, to develop additional key external signals for our refreshed brand. Our work with Mission Minded is grounded in a unifying visual identity—the colors, visual personality, typography, and visual cues that convey our brand externally. The reality is that Marlborough hasn’t changed one bit throughout this process. In fact, we are Marlborough now more than ever, and to those who have yet to know about us and alumnae alike, we are more inviting, clear, and confident about who we are. n

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Our New Visual Identity Marlborough’s identity is rooted in tradition yet inspired by modern, humanist, and organic qualities that mimic Marlborough students and alumnae. Because we are both spirited and relatable, the identity reflects a bold and empowering invitation for all girls to find their belonging and individuality at Marlborough. The logo typeface reads as a solid unit (wordmark), creating confidence while being welcoming and approachable. The sans serif typeface carries tones of entrepreneurism and modernity without being too trendy or idealistic. Underscoring the M in yellow emphasizes the importance of the individual and collective voices of Marlborough. Steadfast, strong, and clear, the underscored M shows poise and personality to stand on its own, just like a Marlborough student or alumna.

YOU DON’T SAY? Yes, we dropped the formal use of “school.” Marlborough—established, credible, and recognized—stands on its own, much like our students and alumnae. Marlborough more compellingly conveys our spirit, our courage, our vision. n




Our goal was to capture the authentic spirit of Marlborough as we look ahead to an exciting future for the school and our students. — Head of School Dr. Priscilla Sands

We at Marlborough believe gender equality can be achieved when all schools model a society in which women have an active seat at the table. Each day, our faculty skillfully supports each student on her unique journey, nurturing her growth as a scholar and a leader, and motivating her to discover and pursue her personal potential. The strong sense of self she develops at Marlborough results in a confident graduate who breaks molds and shatters stereotypes, while leaving a positive and lasting impact on the world around her. n

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Inspired to Serve As her office gears up for another busy year of service learning, Community Outreach Program Head Pamela Wright shares life moments that inspired her work.

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OPPORTUNITIES TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE Pamela Wright committed to a career in service when she moved to Chicago to pursue a graduate degree in public service and nonprofit management. While there, Wright worked at the Chicago Food Bank and Feeding America. After returning to Los Angeles, she directed a homelessness and hunger grant program at the United Way of Los Angeles. Wright joined Marlborough in 2015, focused on increasing partnerships in our immediate communities and beyond, and empowering students to continue to use their voices on issues that move them. “I want to create true service learning moments that integrate meaningful community service with reflection to enrich the girls’ learning experience,” Wright said. “It is equally important to me that the needs of our partner nonprofits are also met.” Wright will continue to look to students for local and international opportunities that inspire them to make a difference. “I have seen our girls immerse themselves in nonprofits that work with everything from homeless LGBT youth to children with incarcerated parents to burn survivors. It never ceases to amaze me what motivates our students to stand up and take action.” n

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Q +A Sophia Danielpour ’19 is one of 21 Teen

Why did you get involved with Girl Up?

Advisors for Girl Up, an organization

Girl Up is very focused on grassroots participation by its supporters, the majority of whom are girls. As a result, I believed that the campaign would allow me to make a meaningful difference in the world, even at my age.

promoting the health, safety, education, and leadership of girls in developing countries. Sophia is currently organizing a second Girl Up Leadership Summit at Marlborough, scheduled to take place in February 2018.

What has been the most impactful? Last summer, I participated in Girl Up’s Lobby Day at their Leadership Summit. We sat down with representatives, including my own congressman, to emphasize the importance of education for girls and the Protecting Girls’ Access to Education Act. The bill would make safe, quality education for girls in vulnerable settings a U.S. foreign policy priority. This day demonstrated to me that despite our age, as girls we can truly make a difference and effectively catalyze change. What advice do you have for middle school students interested in getting involved?

Sophia (right) pictured with her club advisor Catherine Atwell (left).

Pursue your passions. Middle school is a great time to delve into areas of interest with less pressure. I was really interested in feminism and girls’ education, so I looked for organizations that would allow me to pursue those interests. Teens shouldn’t be afraid of using their voices and devoting energy to their interests. n

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Upcoming Events OCTOBER 21, 2017 Admissions Open House

NOVEMBER 2–4, 2017 All-School Play: Peter and the Starcatcher, the imaginative show that has swept the nation with its rollicking fun, will brighten Marlborough’s stage this fall.

NOVEMBER 16–17, 2017 All-School Dance Concert: An assemblage of student choreography explores themes of space and light. Immersive lighting landscape by guest artist Carole Kim.

NOVEMBER 17, 2017 Grandparents’ and Special Friends Day

NOVEMBER 30, 2017 Winter Art Show Opening

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Profile for Mission Minded

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