POWER POWER POWER POWER POWER GIRL
MISS PORTER’S SCHOOL
Miss Porter’s School educates young women to become informed, bold, resourceful and ethical global citizens. We expect our graduates to shape a changing world.
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Miss Porter’s School is different — historically, intentionally and successfully. SARAH PORTER WAS AHEAD OF HER TIME in 1843 when she designed her curriculum to include Latin, French and German; spelling and reading; arithmetic and trigonometry; history and geography; and chemistry, physiology, botany, geology and astronomy. The depth and breadth of her curriculum were unheard of in the 19th century, as was her expectation for each student to design her course selection to meet her individual needs and talents. We have a long tradition of educating girls unconventionally and no plans to deviate from our founder’s vision. TODAY’S MISS PORTER’S SCHOOL carries out Sarah Porter’s vision by continuing to offer a rigorous and innovative education for young women. Miss Porter’s School is different — historically, intentionally and successfully. We’ve been different, are different and will be different from any school, coed or single-gender, than most people have ever experienced. Our proven ability to develop strong female leaders has been replicated decade after decade with unquestionable outcomes. I ARRIVED IN FARMINGTON in 2008 with my family and, as a young female leader, inspired by our powerful mission statement. I came to Miss Porter’s School because I believed in the mission statement, and I stay because I know more than ever that the world needs what our graduates are prepared to do.
I AM GRATEFUL to have raised my sons on a campus where identity matters. Since 1843, Porter’s has had a singular focus on how girls think, how girls learn and why identity matters. My boys have also seen what it takes to become an anti-racist institution. While they will never be students at the school, I can’t imagine a more critical and impactful education than they have received as members of this community. MISS PORTER’S SCHOOL is the most wellresourced girls’ boarding school in the country. I know that I can make the best decisions every day and not be bound by the limitations of finances. Miss Porter’s School is the school of consequence for girls and women, as evidenced by the lives our graduates, also called Ancients, live. WHAT FOLLOWS IN THIS VIEWBOOK are the stories of women who make up the most powerful all-girls network in the world. Each woman has taken her unique path powered by her passion and experiences, and as an Ancient, she will always be part of our sisterhood, and Farmington will always be her home! Sincerely,
Dr. Katherine G. Windsor Head of School Miss Porter’s School
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“Porter’s will always be the community in which I learned to recognize and explore what passion means to me. From the agency to choose classes that planted the seeds of my interest in law and politics to the opportunities to broaden my perspective and engage with students across the world, I remain grateful for both the new prospects I explored and the challenges I faced.” Rhodes Scholar, Columbia University SYDNI SCOTT ’18 Harlem, NY
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Ella’s passion is skiing, but golf and volleyball take a close second and third in her affections. Porter’s is the kind of place where “if you want to try a new sport, it’s 100 percent supported,” she says. That applies to just about any aspect of campus life, too, because “trying new things is encouraged.” Student ELLA KOSTER ’24 Canton, CT
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“I really felt I needed more of a challenge academically, and Porter’s provided that challenge,” Savannah says. She enjoys her classes — particularly science — and feels she’s developing the critical thinking skills and resourcefulness that will prepare her well for life, not just college and a career. Savannah plays club basketball, has a second-degree black belt in taekwondo, and is part of the school’s Black & Latinx Alliance as well as Sister2Sister, the affinity group for Black and African American students. Student SAVANNAH SMITH ’24 Farmington, CT
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“I went from a smart young lady who was shy and quiet and didn’t want others to know I loved learning to an outspoken, outgoing and strong leader,” says Shakira. “Porter’s gave this young Latina born and raised in Hartford an opportunity to grow both academically and as a person. I am who I am today because of Porter’s. Not only did Porter’s introduce me to engineering, but it also made me an independent, confident and strong woman.” Aerospace Engineer SHAKIRA RAMOS ’98 South Windsor, CT
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Photo by Peter Aaron/OTTO
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Unlock all that you are at Miss Porter’s School. Within our legacy lies your future. LIKE ALL PORTER’S STUDENTS BEFORE YOU, you will receive a rigorous and interdisciplinary liberal arts education. You will commit to mutual respect and high standards of achievement while working creatively, thinking critically and analytically, making connections across disciplines, and applying knowledge to increasingly complex problems. Our classes are engaging, experiential, and student-focused and take place within a daily schedule designed to optimize academic success and personal well-being. Just as Sarah Porter envisioned, you will be empowered to become the architect of your own experience. WE BELIEVE in having a purpose. Well-known and often recited, our mission statement is no mere piece of paper; it is the very identity of our school. Miss Porter’s School educates young women to become informed, bold, resourceful and ethical global citizens. We expect our graduates to shape a changing world. Our students are inspired by what we believe they are capable of achieving. You too will be expected to shape a changing world. You will know that you can. WE RECOGNIZE the role an individual plays in the global community, and we seek to understand our shared responsibilities on a global scale. We value our geographically diverse community, with students hailing from 24 states and 26 countries.
DURING YOUR PORTER’S JOURNEY, you will find a strong network to support your progress. Faculty advisors offer academic and personal guidance to new students, or New Girls, in their transition to Porter’s. The advisor relationship continues even after a student becomes an Old Girl. Every New Girl is assigned an Old Girl, a senior who is both her friend and mentor. Together, you will delve deeper into the spirit of connection and community shared between students by taking part in Traditions, many of which have existed since the school’s founding. At Porter’s, you will develop lifelong relationships with your teachers and classmates. With the freedom to explore and unwavering encouragement from both your friends and your teachers, you will find your most authentic self. MISS PORTER’S SCHOOL OFFERS YOU the opportunity to grow, reach out, and connect with others who share your commitment to making a difference in your community and lasting contributions to the world. You will learn to identify challenges and seize opportunities, gaining perspective along the way about who you are, what you can accomplish, and what matters most to you. Still, your student experience is only the beginning. The skills and friendships that you develop in Farmington will last for a lifetime.
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Kristabel has held leadership roles in groups as diverse as her interests: Gospel Choir, the theater honor society, Christian Fellowship and Sister2Sister, the affinity group for Black and African American students. “I love to keep myself busy,” says the actress and aspiring entertainment lawyer. “I’m glad Porter’s has so much to offer in terms of academics and extracurriculars.” Student KRISTABEL KENTA-BIBI ’22 Glastonbury, CT
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Sera grew up in Farmington but eventually traded New England seasons for Florida’s sunshine. However, she took with her the lessons learned at Porter’s. “Advertising is a male-dominated industry. Porter’s helped me understand from an early age that we could become the women that don’t exist in these positions yet. There are times when it’s frustrating not having the female mentors I’d love to learn from, but I know that one day I can be that woman in leadership for a younger woman who needs me.” She might even be a Porter’s girl! Art Director SERA TAKATA ’13 Miami, FL
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“My role today is about helping people create the world they want to believe in. It’s about seeing beyond the current state and building consensus between core stakeholders on how to make a shared ‘ideal state’ possible. I get to change the world by motivating change makers to dream bigger and collaborate better. Miss Porter’s enabled me to see that possibility is infinitely expansive. It leveled up my expectations for myself and enabled me to see new possibilities for what I could do and who I could be.” Chief Impact Officer & Managing Partner CAT LINDROTH ’04 Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica
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“The sense of community really is true,” and the Porter’s community extends well beyond Farmington. Ellie was on a plane freshman year when two girls reached over, tapped her on the shoulder and said, “We noticed you’re wearing this ring — is that a Porter’s ring?” Ellie recalls this moment fondly. “It was so welcoming of them to stop a stranger on a plane and say, ‘We hope you have a good Porter’s experience.’” Student ELLIOTT LONDON ’24 West Hartford, CT
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Photos by Peter Aaron/OTTO
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Our programs are innovative, interdisciplinary and collaborative and strive to help students consider pressing problems through formulating creative solutions. OUR STUDENTS are anything but ordinary. They deserve extraordinary teachers, experiences and opportunities to showcase all that is possible with great interest and great effort. It’s an ambitious undertaking that is uniquely Porter’s, and it all happens through the thoughtful design of our daily schedule. Miss Porter’s School operates on a modular block schedule. Rather than taking six yearlong classes, students take two or three classes that meet intensively in an extended block every day for a 10-to-11-week trimester. Benefits of a modular block schedule include more active and engaging teaching, more focus on fewer things at one time, more impactful and lasting learning, slower pacing of the day to promote greater health and wellness, fewer homework assignments per night, and more sleep. OUR CURRICULUM CONTINUES TO EVOLVE in response to the changing world and the needs of our students. We are focused on establishing courses and programs that are engaging, relevant, interdisciplinary and experiential in nature. Our academic program is global in scope and highly personalized. It continues to emphasize the liberal arts, exposing girls to timeless questions while preparing them to address the pressing problems of our world. Additionally, our curriculum ensures that girls learn to innovate and create; understand what it means to be an entrepreneur; conduct original research; complete projects within science, technology,
entrepreneurship, arts and mathematics (STEAM) fields; and develop a deep understanding of the humanities and social sciences in order to address complex social issues. PORTER’S HAS DEVELOPED Advanced Interdisciplinary Seminar (AIS) courses that cultivate exceptional thinkers and provide rich experiences by combining the intellectual rigor of traditional Advanced Placement courses with interdisciplinary, experiential and project-based learning. Students are challenged to think deeply, ask thoughtful questions, analyze and evaluate information for content and merit, and make connections across topics and subjects. Seminars regularly surpass the expectations of an Advanced Placement course curriculum, allowing for a more intense understanding of subjects in a broader sense. AT BOARDING SCHOOL, it is said that teaching is not only a job, but a way of life. More than half of our faculty and staff members reside on campus, where they are fully immersed in the community. They support our students not only in the classroom, but on the fields, in the studios and on the stage. Eighty-five percent of our faculty hold degrees beyond the bachelor level, and they are constantly developing creative ways to innovate and expand our curriculum with the support of and in collaboration with colleagues.
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After trying out boarding school life at summer camps, Leeah began investigating independent high schools. “I’ve always liked the idea of being really close with the people I go to school with,” she says, adding that she felt an allgirl campus would be empowering. The residential experience has made her more self-reliant, and she finds it energizing “to be surrounded by people who are ambitious.” Student LEEAH HAN ’24 Parrish, FL
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“As a Black girl who arrived fishout-of-water to the campus in the fall of 1990, I had no idea what I was going to experience, but I was encouraged to remain open, and the school kept its promise to remain open with me. My experience there helped to build a sense of confidence that helped me to know that I could do anything I set my mind to do.” Writer, Orator, Producer CHRISHAUNDA LEE PEREZ ’94 Atlanta, GA
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Anne can trace her passion for design back to her years at Porter’s, where she took art history and studio art courses and interned at the Hill-Stead Museum. “Art is something that you can just build on and build on,” she says. “I didn’t know who I would be or what my career would look like, but looking back, it all makes sense.” She founded Anne Hepfer Designs in 2003 and has been creating award-winning interiors for homeowners across North America ever since. “Deep down, I think being an entrepreneur was always a dream for me,” she says. Interior Designer, Entrepreneur & Author ANNE MORTON HEPFER ’91 Toronto, Canada
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Evelyn is a talented poet and soccer player who says she came to Porter’s “introverted and shy,” but friends and faculty encouraged her to try new activities, including lacrosse, basketball, world dance, ceramics and photography. “I’ve done so many things that I never thought I would have the chance to do,” she says, singling out an extracurricular business course where she learned to help her immigrant parents with their taxes. What would she tell prospective students? “Don’t judge a book by its cover. If I’d continued to do that, I wouldn’t have come to this place that has shaped me into the person I am now.” Student EVELYN SANCHEZ ’23 East Harlem, NY
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Our students pursue global studies and technology, innovation and entrepreneurship through our unique Institutes and Certificate Programs. IN OUR INSTITUTE FOR GLOBAL EDUCATION (IGE), students challenge their assumptions, develop empathy, and expand their understanding of how their identities influence their perspectives. Students interested in pursuing global studies more deeply may choose to pursue the Certificate in Global Studies (GS). This certificate program is a path through which students develop cross-cultural knowledge and communication skills, as well as the ability to think critically about global change with a deeper understanding of the interconnected and interdependent nature of our world. They focus on and address real-world issues that are relevant to them, culminating in a 12th-grade Capstone project. OUR 11TH-GRADE GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP PROGRAM embeds our student travel experiences and global citizenship curriculum into trimester-long interdisciplinary courses. This mission-driven program is designed to deepen student learning and enrich students’ experience while immersing them in place-based learning as they travel domestically and internationally. Each course explores a pressing global issue through an interdisciplinary approach, focusing on the issue in the country or area to which students travel during the course. The course of study continues through experiential, hands-on learning while students are immersed in a local community.
OUR INSTITUTE FOR TECHNOLOGY, INNOVATION AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP (TIE) prepares our students to lead within a technology-driven global society and economy. Our required introductory course focuses on hands-on experiences and skill development in science, technology, engineering, art and math, with an emphasis on emerging trends, guest lectures from industry professionals, and research and design activities. Following the academic day, our afternoon program offers students the chance to gain new skills in a variety of topics including robotics, artificial intelligence, data science and more. Access and opportunity aren’t the only tools you need. Our recently renovated innovation lab in our Olin Arts and Science Center is home to a suite of rapid-prototyping equipment such as 3-D printers, a CNC machine and a full spectrum laser cutter, MakeyMakey boards, Brick Pi, and Arduino UNO and YUN Microcontrollers. OUR CAPSTONES are open to all interested seniors, and a capstone project is required for students pursuing certificates in TIE and GS. AIS Capstone challenges students in their final year at Porter’s to complete an independent project in response to a timeless question or pressing problem that they see in the world. Students research, innovate, develop, create, build and, ultimately, present their work to the entire school.
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“With the confidence and charisma that are cultivated at Porter’s, I now boldly lean into my current role that allows me to design and implement global programs that can have an impact on individuals, communities, industries and economies,” says Nikki, who works for Global Communities, an international development and humanitarian assistance nonprofit. “The role I have now requires me to be bold, daring, strategic, empathetic and resilient, which are all character traits that I developed or refined while at Porter’s. The Porter’s mission has become an integral part of the DNA of my life.” Project Director NIKKI DUNCAN ’98 Washington, DC
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A native of Shanghai, Jenny is active in the Asian Student Alliance and is a leader of the Mock Trial Club and the Math and Coding Team. She’s also very involved in the school’s Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (TIE) program. Jenny chose Porter’s because she wanted to embrace her identity as a young woman and because she thought it would make her more confident. It has. During the collegeapplication process, she says, she’s been secure in the knowledge that “after learning at Porter’s, I will thrive no matter where I end up.” Student JENNY SUN ’22 Shanghai, China
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Lucy loves the small classes at Porter’s and the way she absorbs knowledge through discussions, projects and collaboration — “real-world learning,” she calls it. What surprised her the most about the school? “How much growth can happen. Every time you think you’re adjusted, Porter’s — in the best way possible — has a way of pushing you to try more things.” Student LUCY NEWMYER ’23 Palm Beach, FL
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Nisha attributes her interest in law to the academic experiences she had at Porter’s. “My absolute favorite classes were microeconomics and macroeconomics with Mr. Burns and my history classes with Mr. Weathers.” After college, Nisha turned to our Ancient network for career advice. “While in law school, I reached out to a number of women through our alumnae network. I got amazing advice from them on potential career paths and options I could pursue as an attorney.” Lawyer NISHA KAPUR SIEDOR ’07 West Hartford, CT
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At Miss Porter’s School, our resources and opportunities are prioritized to optimize students’ intellectual, social and emotional development. OUTSIDE OF THE CLASSROOM, our students develop essential life skills through the pursuit of their passions. Our innovative schedule allows for 60 minutes of community time each day, during which students may pursue individual interests, conduct or attend meetings for clubs and organizations, socialize, receive extra help, or begin homework. The team, group, and activity options in the Porter’s co-curricular program are also integral to our mission. By participating in the co-curricular afternoon program strands in athletics, arts or technology, students develop an understanding of leadership, group dynamics, overcoming adversity and empathy. WITH ALL OF OUR RESOURCES dedicated to girls, competitive athletes flourish. Imagine only the best athletic facilities possible for female athletes: three state-of-the-art turf fields, including a full NCAA regulation victory turf field that is home to our varsity field hockey team and a full NCAA regulation synthetic turf field that is home to our varsity soccer team; a pool and squash center housing an eight-lane, 25-yard swimming pool and eight international squash courts; cardio, free weight and erg rooms; two gymnasiums; five deco-turf tennis courts; an indoor track; an indoor golf tee; and a crew boathouse for our fall and spring crew program. Consider the idea of never having to compete for equal time. From fields to fitness equipment from athletic training to game scheduling, all of our attention is on girls’ sports. We play to win.
THROUGH STEADY INTERACTION with the arts in both the classroom and in the community, you will be taught to be expressive, articulate and discerning. With the guidance of teachers who are all practicing artists, you will advance your skills in your preferred discipline within exceptional facilities, all designed with innovative and essential elements for quality work. You will be inspired by our monthly visiting artist series, including an annual alumnae art show and student work exhibit; multiple dance, music and theater productions; and our annual art sale and Bowl-A-Thon philanthropic events. You will recognize the arts as a pathway to discover yourself and those around you. IN ORDER TO GROW, you need genuine opportunities for responsibility and autonomy, along with a healthy measure of guidance. That’s where the Porter Plan comes in. The Porter Plan is one of the distinguishing features of our school. It requires that our house directors’ primary responsibilities on campus be within our dormitories and focused on you. The Porter Plan ensures that house directors are able to concentrate on building strong, interactive bonds with each student in their dorm without the additional expectations of teaching or coaching — the standard at other boarding schools. We know that residential faculty who teach all day and coach all afternoon can’t offer the same support as our house directors can and do provide. Students transition to boarding school best when there are adults in their lives who are present and available, just as families are. A little help goes a long way. PICTURE PORTER’S 29
Reina was looking for challenging academics and “the opportunity to have an in-depth, rigorous — but also manageable — education” when she came to Porter’s. She found that, and more. Along with playing field hockey in the fall and acting in school plays in the winter and spring, Reina sings in the Perilhettes and coleads an affinity group and club for students of Middle Eastern descent. Student REINA SALAMA ’22 Unionville, CT
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“Porter’s changed me in so many ways,” says Amanda, who is director of counseling at Porter’s. “As a student, I learned the value of deep and authentic relationships with my peers and the adults supporting us. This has greatly affected me over the years and now drives me to be that same support for our students. It is truly an honor to help them thrive and grow through all the experiences in their lives.” Clinical Social Worker AMANDA MAGARY KICE ’93 Farmington, CT
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Ivana is an aspiring scientist and physician who also loves to play piano, dance and make art. Porter’s was love at first (virtual) sight. “I opened the webpage and said, ‘I love it. I want to be in this school,’” she says. She was attracted to the demanding academics as well as the beautiful campus and surroundings. As a member of the International Student Alliance, Ivana helps New Girls from other countries adjust to school life. “This school is so open-minded, and it’s very welcoming, so whatever culture you’re from, they’re going to accept you.” Student IVANA RODAL FERNANDEZ ’24 Mexico City, Mexico
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Varina, an anesthesiology resident at UCLA Medical Center, finds providing culturally responsive and comprehensive health care the most rewarding part of her job. “I wouldn’t be where I am today without Porter’s,” she says, noting that the school nurtured her passion for serving others and left her with a legacy of sisterhood, leadership, ownership and female empowerment. “It helped me to develop the skills and confidence to push past obstacles to pursue my dreams and reach my goals.” Anesthesiologist VARINA CLARK ’08 Los Angeles, CA
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It’s said that our students come as girls and leave as women. As graduates, our Ancients join the most powerful all-girls network in the world. ALL OF OUR CONVERSATIONS are about what matters most for students. Students in our research methods course study participatory action research, tackling an intensive, campusbased issue as the topic for their yearlong research project within the Porter’s community. Then, they survey, code and analyze their results after a thorough review of the current literature in the field of the research project in order to effect change. Our research scholars have given presentations at the Ethnography in Education Research Forum, Northeastern Educational Research Association and National Coalition of Girls’ Schools Global Forum and served as keynote speakers at The Association of Boarding Schools Leadership Forum. Connected to this work are countless working groups and task forces made up of students and adults committed to evolution, change and relevance. Your voice will be heard. NOW IS A TIME ripe with both opportunities and challenges for women. We are able to address and answer the ways in which our students begin to question what their lives will look like after high school. We have the difficult discussions: how social expectations are different for girls than boys, how gender plays
into college admission, how to navigate the income wage gap, or how to find the right work-life balance. We invite female leaders in their fields to present to students thanks to the funds provided by our generous endowment. Ancients are welcomed back to campus as speakers to share their topical and relevant experiences, both personal and professional. All students are invited to participate in our Journey Talks by giving a presentation during Morning Meeting about a matter of personal importance or individual growth. It is a big world out there and getting bigger. You’ll be ready to hit the ground running. BOUND TOGETHER by their experiences in Farmington, our graduates join a network of accomplished alumnae with whom they will always be connected as they shape a changing world. While at Porter’s, you will experience the depth of those connections even before graduation. Past and present converge when Ancients bring their experiences of life beyond Farmington back to campus to engage a new generation of students. In our Ancients, you will catch a glimpse of your own future. Like all those who have come before you, you too will graduate with all you need to succeed.
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“Porter’s gave me the support at a young age to be independent, to make choices and to become confident in my choices. Because of Porter’s, I knew at a young age that being a girl was powerful. Now, as a female founder, I feel I was able to take a leap into this risky role because I was always told it was good to be a woman.” Entrepreneur ADDIE BENSON GUNDRY ’05 Libertyville, IL
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After Tyler moved to the U.S. from Germany with her family in 2019, she quickly gained fluency in English and reconnected with field hockey, a passion she’d had since age 5. A gifted midfielder, she plays and trains for the sport year-round. She’s also an accomplished pianist who loves studying math, science and languages. Tyler says Porter’s is giving her skills to be successful in life. “The whole experience prepares you for the world.” Student TYLER GASTON ’23 East Hampton, CT
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Mae knew she wanted to attend a boarding school on the East Coast like her older brother, but she also knew it had to have a good soccer team. “Soccer was definitely a big factor because I love it and had played it my entire life,” she says. Settling in as a boarder was simple, and “it surprised me how easy it was to feel part of the community.” Considering Porter’s? “Come with an open mind. Everything is pretty much ready for you. You just have to have a positive mindset.” Student MAE FOURTICQ ’24 Denver, CO
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Part of a small and growing cohort of women in the male-dominated hedge fund sector, Tina finds it rewarding to mentor younger women. “Porter’s taught me the power of self-confidence, of perseverance through challenges, and of open-mindedness and balance,” says Tina, one of the first mainland Chineseborn students to attend the school. “Porter’s helped me gain confidence in myself, allowed me to seek challenging roles and made me more interested in STEM. It also helped me learn to act as a cultural bridge between East and West.” Investor TINA XU ’05 Hong Kong
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Miss Porter’s School Community Call to Action We are the living legacy of Sarah Porter. At a time when women were undervalued, she created an intentional community for young women to gain greater agency in their lives. In doing so, Miss Porter’s School supported future pioneers and leaders to reach their full potential. While Sarah Porter’s vision was radically brave in nature, it was not accessible to all women. In order to fully realize an inclusive vision of education for all young women, we must interrogate our history while cultivating the future of our community. Like our founder, we are both bold in our desire for change and limited by the scope of our experience. To expand Sarah Porter’s vision to be more fully inclusive and equitable, we must: – Commit to the work of building a school community rooted in the inherent worth and dignity of each member, with courage and integrity. – Grapple with the responsibility of enacting change, both within and beyond our time in Farmington. – Hold ourselves accountable for our own limitations while forging a foundation for future leaders to fix the mistakes we leave behind. In doing so, we contribute to a more just chapter in our institution’s legacy.
Miss Porter’s School 60 Main Street Farmington, CT 06032 (860) 409-3530 porters.org