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THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

How

Do I

Fit?

ISSUE 3 / SPRING 2012


MISSION STATEMENT The Pegasus School is dedicated to academic excellence and to the development of lifelong learners who are confident, caring, and courageous. COMMUNITY VALUES

• Diverse, collaborative, and vibrant • Serious about academic life • Rich in opportunities • Nurturing of the gifted student • Engaged in the world outside the school

Pegasus students love to learn, to be challenged, and to work hard; they are bright and motivated; they are joyful; they grow in both intellect and empathy. Pegasus teachers love to teach; they are flexible, creative, collaborative, and innovative; they foster each student’s individual gifts and passions; they educate the mind and the heart. Pegasus parents value education; they work closely with the school in a partnership based on thoughtful communication and mutual respect.

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THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

Academically Confident

Well Balanced

Critical Thinker

Exceptional Communicator

Collaborative Leader

Responsible Citizen

• Environmentally Conscious • Technologically Adept • Economically Astute • Versed in the Arts • Globally Aware

Cover photo by Rick Davitt

Our students learn best, and develop the skills they need to pursue their dreams, in a community that is:

PORTRAIT OF A GRADUATE


Spring 2012 www.thepegasusschool.org EditorIAL BOARD Nancy Conklin, Director of Admission Rick Davitt, Photographer Karla Joyce, Writer Sue Harrison, Director of Advancement Shalini Mattina, Assoc. Director of Advancement, Marketing Nancy Wilder, Middle School English Teacher John Zurn, Head of School Writers Karla Joyce John Zurn Angel Waters, Assoc. Director of Advancement, Programs & Events Contributing Writers Mohamed El-Erian Nancy Fries Charley Hurst Charline Nakamura-Lazenby Julia Ostmann ’07 Eva Polizzi ’97 Dan Rosenberg Marrie Stone

Table of Contents FEATURES

Teresa Vicuna Haley & Miranda Young ’01 Art Direction and Design Shalini Mattina

PEGASUS NOW

Contributing Photographers Rick Davitt Shalini Mattina

20

Equipping our Children for a Rapidly Changing World

24

An Ever-Expanding Education

5

Head’s Message

6

At the Heart of

8

Family Spotlight

14

Printing

Faculty Focus

30 Spanish

Orange County Printing

39

Supporting Our Mission

40 Calendar

Pegasus Magazine is published twice yearly

We welcome your feedback! Please address queries and comments to Shalini Mattina smattina@thepegasusschool.org

Quiet Leader, Big Effect

10 Programs

Sharon Qualls

by the Office of Advancement at The Pegasus School. It is archived at thepegasusschool.org/about/publications

16

ALUMNI

32

Those Who Soar...

34

Alumni Connections

38

Pegasus Then & Now

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012

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4

THE PEGASUS SCHOOL


HEAD’S MESSAGE

ABC’s E’s

The

and

of Success

At Pegasus, we have this incredible opportunity to teach bright and motivated children a compelling meaning of success. It is a concept less defined by mastery of the ABC’s than by an intricate understanding of the three E’s:

Education — the ways we embrace learning

Entrepreneurialism — the initiatives we take to use our own skills

Empathy — the ways we reach out to others in common purpose and meaning.

Inside this edition of Pegasus Magazine, you will see the three E’s at play on our campus. Pegasus parent, Mohamed El-Erian, tackles the subject of educating students for the “New Normal,” a phrase he uses to describe the shifting global economy. To summarize his take on today’s students: “How they think is as important as what they think.” The school promotes Economic Literacy as a critical foundation in its Portrait of a Pegasus Graduate. Pegasus parent, Marrie Stone, lays out the economic opportunities laced into the Pegasus curriculum which “fosters an atmosphere of intense curiosity, creativity, charity and enterprise.” Hear from Lower School Director, Dan Rosenberg, who writes about the birth of the school’s Be Kind Committee and the ways we encourage our students to reach out to others. Pegasus parent, Nancy Fries, tells us that true leadership lies within each of us and is often manifest in unseen places. The stories of Emma Robertson, Josh Morrison, Katelyn Baker, and Davis Clement demonstrate Pegasus leadership at its finest. Perhaps the best example of the 3 E’s is the profile written by former Pegasus student, Julia Ostmann. She tells the story of fellow Pegasus graduate, Hawken Miller — written with such grace and insight that this much is clear: Julia’s education is evident in the quality and passion of her writing; Hawken and his family have faced their challenges with true entrepreneurial courage by establishing Cure Duchenne, a foundation for funding research and establishing awareness; and the Pegasus community is deeply grounded in empathy.

John Zurn Head of School

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012

5


At the Heart of Pegasus by Karla Joyce

What a Wonderful World (Pegasus Student, Claire Dwyer)

A

dolescent imagination is a powerful thing. It grabs impressions from life and injects them with steroids, creating utter perfection. Hours can be lost locking eyes with Rob Pattinson, flashing designer swag and accepting Academy Awards. Every now and then, circumstances collide in such a way that passion and hard work meet with opportunity leaving little occasion to invent. For Pegasus eighth grader Claire Dwyer, the dream and life intersect like that and success stacks up perfectly… as if scripted by a teenager. Dwyer has been singing since she was a very little kid. Her two-page resume touts the official start of her career as a performance in Opera Pacific’s La Boheme, at age nine. Already, she had been training with the Pacific Symphony’s Southern California Children’s Choir and, in six years, has graduated into the Concert Choir. Under the guidance of musical director Lori Loftus, the choir has performed in grand venues with impressive company; in 2009, for instance, Dwyer sang for Nancy Reagan and the Congressional Medal of Honor recipients

at the Ronald Reagan Library. Meanwhile, Dwyer has buffed out the theatrical side of her gift. For seven consecutive years, she has performed in Pegasus productions and carefully organized her off-season schedule to accommodate dramatic prospects. Most recently, she earned her first paid position in the Broadway professional touring production of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Always looking ahead, she opened a college fund with her wages, and she adds to it steadily with winnings from singing competitions, which she enters in her spare time. Ironically, it was Dwyer’s music teacher, Kathleen Martin, who put the perspective into Claire’s story. “She named her dog Melody.” Martin praised Dwyer’s talent and time management skills, but maintained that it was her love of music — pure and simple — that powered her ambition. While she has the chops for opera, Martin explained, she can’t know that today. Today, she’s a thirteen-yearold girl with high grades and a knack for debate, a weakness for ice cream (a singer’s nemesis), and a very open mind.

She also happens to be the daughter of a classical-musician manager (mom) and the President of Segerstrom Center for the Arts (dad). Dwyer may carve a few minutes here or there to mentally drift, like her peers, but most likely the phone will interrupt her reverie… as it did recently. The Southern California Children’s Choir was invited to sing, “What a Wonderful World” at the 84th Annual Academy Awards, during a film tribute to the Hollywood celebrities who passed away in 2011. (Odds are, she met a Twilight movie star…)

The Donut Crew (Pegasus Fathers & Daughters) (Crew n. — A group of people working together; a squad.)

I

t’s a captivating, southern California visual: surfer dudes hitting the waves at daybreak, the ubiquitous row of neoprene figures dotting the sightline through a chilly mist, a vacant pier as backdrop. But wait. Bobbing between those hardy silhouettes is a smattering of little girls in extra-small wetsuits on short boards. It’s Sunday morning outside Blackies by the Sea, and this intrepid collection of Pegasus dads and daughters are surfing together. The first Pegasus father-daughter duo hit the water nearly two years ago. Mike 6

THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

Mulroy took his then seven-year-old Alden for a pilot outing and punctuated the effort with a celebratory donut from Seaside Bakery. While it was fun, he recalled, he knew she would be more inclined to persevere in the company of peers. So he invited fellow surfer Carl Kawabe and his daughter Caroline to join in and, by definition, a “crew” was born. The crew has grown to a core of eight girls ranging in age from five to nine, but they remain small by the nature of the activity. Surfing, Mulroy admitted, is a dangerous affair. Surfing with small children, who are naturally weaker


swimmers, is even more so. This sobering detail challenges his recruiting efforts but greatly enhances the personal growth and camaraderie that permeates the group. The fathers involved are seasoned surfers themselves, capable of teaching young girls technique and ocean safety while physically directing and protecting them. The level of exertion and element of risk have contributed to a steep learning curve, along with infectious drive. His favorite example of this combination came from third grader Arabella Foster.

After getting dragged under water for an uncomfortable duration, she emerged with a dazed look and announced, “That was awesome!” As another example, he added: “We were getting crushed in big, shortperiod waves and Alden was taking it in the face as we tried to get past the breakline. Eventually, we passed the impact zone and were out deep in large, rolling waves. As I was mentally working out our safest route to shore, Alden said: ‘I want to get barreled, Dad.’”

For Matt Watson and his daughters, Miranda and Avery, the Donut Crew eased the transition into a new school. “It solidified our belief that Pegasus is the place for us,” Watson explained. “And who doesn’t love a good donut?” Third grader Lauren von Aspen sure does. And she enjoys catching her own waves, too. But the true girl-in-the-curl satisfaction, she insisted, comes from “surfing together.”

The Angel Among Us (Pegasus Staff, Angel Waters)

“T

he reason angels can fly is they take themselves lightly,” wrote G.K. Chesterton, English writer and theologian of the Victorian era. Angel Waters — Associate Director of Advancement, Programs & Events at The Pegasus School — has never been seen taking flight, but she does possess conspicuous traits that hearken aeronautics. She exudes balance. She is typically swathed in thick sweaters, yet shivering, as if trapped in an unseen vortex of crisp, cool air. And, she is never without her 24-ounce ceramic coffee mug, a.k.a. covert ballast, secretly securing her to earth. More importantly, Angel takes herself lightly. For the past eight years, she has managed a revolving host of parent volunteers in the planning and execution of the annual Spring Benefit, a fundraising event at Pegasus that yields a significant portion of the operating budget. She administers a thriving association of Grandparents. And she has cultivated the Alumni Association by keeping in touch with Pegasus graduates, helping to maintain the rich memories and lifelong connections shared by so many former students. It is a profusion of details,

names and communications to manage and she has done so, flawlessly. She has done so, calmly. Some might even say she has done so, silently. Most people would not know the extent of Angel’s contributions to the Pegasus community because she prefers it that way; she is fiercely private. Yet, a glimpse into her private world is critical to Angel’s story. Laid out in snapshots from beginning to end, it goes something like this: Angel grew up shy. A handicapped boy lived next door. She witnessed bullying. It pained her to such an extent that it paved the way to her future. Her first employer was United Cerebral Palsy. After the birth of her second child, she retired to parenting. Pulled back by compassion, she volunteered for Project Cuddle, an organization that prevented baby abandonment. In time, she managed the office, manned the hotline, lobbied the government and, inevitably, fostered babies. In 2003, she adopted one of them. By 2007, under the veteran eye of Pegasus pre-k teacher Sandy Deering, she learned that her daughter had autism. Even still, Angel plants herself firmly in the silver lining: “Because of Sandy, we

were able to detect the autism at an early stage. We were so blessed.” Today, in addition to her work at Pegasus, Angel is an advocate and active fundraiser for Autism Speaks, as well as a member of the Fountain Valley Educational Foundation, an entity charged with funding science, music, arts, and library programs that have been cut from public schools. For those fortunate enough to know her, she is an inspiration. She is a quiet force, helping hundreds of souls. She is — without doubt — an angel.

Karla Joyce is a Pegasus parent and contributing writer for the Pegasus Magazine. Contact: karlajoyce@cox.net

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012

7


FAMILY SPOTLIGHT

EDUCATION:

Meet Peter, Emily, Harry, Toni-Marie, Penelope, Jack and Nicoletta Koulos… All Together, A Pegasus Legacy

8

The most familiar snapshot of Greek-

Orthodox Church in Los Angeles. They

America. The generations proliferated

American culture in modern history

spent Sundays and Greek Orthodox

with alacrity and named their offspring

might well be the 2002 romantic comedy,

summer camps together and attended

according to Greek tradition: first-born

My Big Fat Greek Wedding. In the movie,

high school proms and debutante balls.

male (father’s father), first-born female

a young Greek woman falls in love

Shortly after graduating from college,

(father’s mother), second-born male

with a non-Greek and struggles for her

they married. While the marriage

(mother’s father), second-born female

family’s approval. The plot unfolds with

was anything but arranged, her father

(mother’s mother), and so on. Emily and

a healthy dose of cultural stereotype (the

strictly conveyed the fact that she would

Peter followed suit.

controlling immigrant father, a truckload

eventually marry a Greek man. “We

of cousins with the same name, and

were so immersed in Greek culture that,

chuckle at the exacting customs of this

raucous feasts) but ends with this telling

frankly, it was easier to fall in love with a

ancient culture being wedged into our

narration:

Greek.”

freer, modern times, but not a Greek. It

A non-Greek might shrug or even

Key word: frankly. The history of

is the tenacity of the Greek tradition and

and we laugh and yes, we roast lamb on a

Greece might spill from Emily’s mouth

Greek Orthodoxy faith that cements its

spit in the front yard. But wherever I go,

before her coffee cools, and any audience

values—above all: family predominates.

whatever I do, they will always be there.”

would be captivated. But, with direction,

Education is a duty. Religious practice

she happily focuses on the Koulos family.

binds a community.

truth in stereotype.

Peter’s grandparents emigrated from the

Greek island of Kalymnos at the same

culture and the increasing ease in which

unwavering identity, and yes, it is Greek.

time Emily’s ancestors arrived from

students can access information, the

When she was ten years old, Emily

Kalamata, both families, with the goal

constancy and moral assuredness of the

met Peter Koulos at St. Sophia Greek

of better educating their children in

Greek culture appeals. Despite external

“My family is big and loud. We fight

According to Emily Koulos, there is The Koulos family has a conspicuous,

THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

Given the landscape of our popular

Photos courtesy of Gina Chiaramonte, Photographic Designs

by Karla Joyce


pressures, Greek children are steeped

team recently took second place in the

in Greek identity. They are buffeted by

high school championship at The Honda

it and, Emily would add, they blossom

Center, and he played quarterback on

because of it. “It is my job, my duty, to

the Pegasus championship football team

give this to my children.”

this year, and Nicoletta won the state

championship in gymnastics at Level 9—

By association, she has also given it to

Pegasus.

but they bring joy to their big brother.

They also embody the family ethos that

Little Harry was just three years old

when he arrived at Pegasus. (Today, he is

has been long carved by both Greek

22.) In the ensuing nineteen years, The

culture and Koulos character: the desire

Pegasus School has grown-up in step

the Air Force Judge Advocate General

to bring joy, an intrinsic need to honor

with five Koulos students, each avidly

(JAG) Corps at Andrews Air Force Base.

family and community, and a steady

Greek in philosophy and drive. They

striving for personal excellence.

strive to bring honor to their family, as

“artistic one,” says Emily. A sophomore

they are schooled in traditional Greek

at Drexel University’s Westphal School

on the commonality of sheer achievement

dancing, on the side. Each one, however,

of Media Arts and Design, Toni-Marie

from such a diverse cast, it is the fact

is unique. A quick inventory of their

is relatively seasoned in the field of

that joy bounces so freely from brother

pursuits and achievements is nearly

fashion. She has spent two consecutive

to brother, parent to child, son to sister

beyond belief.

summers under the tutelage of Pegasus

Toni-Marie is, by all accounts, the

While it would be natural to focus

that truly sets this family apart. They

parent, Christina Peng, at TSE Cashmere. Emily credits Pegasus for recognizing her daughter’s artistic nature. By high school she was in full possession of her own creativity; she wrote, acted in and directed plays for the Wilson Drama department.

Penelope is a ballerina. As a high

school senior, she is currently in the throes of college applications and dance school auditions, targeting NYU, Fordham and Julliard, among others. She

bring joy. They love in spades. They go out

class from Woodrow Wilson High School

is also wrapping up her final semester

into the big world in big style but they

in Long Beach. Long ago he had fallen in

as valedictorian of her class. Curiously

come home, frequently. They talk, daily.

love with Yale and history — interests

discerning (for an eighteen year old), she

Sure, this group shows (exceptionally)

fueled by his family (Dad had taken

has already calculated the likelihood and

well dolled-up on a Christmas card, but

him to Cooperstown for his devotion to

longevity of a career on her toes, so she

it is the snapshot of true friendship and

baseball and, while there, they visited

has a backup plan. Her real goal is to earn

loyalty that shows the family’s soul.

Yale) and Pegasus (his all-time favorite

a PhD in Kinesiology from USC and work

teacher was social studies whiz, Mrs.

as a physical therapist for a professional

Love your brothers and sisters. Make

Bortz) — so off he went. He graduated

ballet company.

education a priority while cultivating

with honors and is currently a first-year

individuality. Contribute to a community;

law student at Georgetown, interns in

Nicoletta (Pegasus fifth grader) have

identify somewhere. Go about your

the Office of Vaccine Litigation in the

equally impressive talents, but truly

business, whatever it is, with full energy...

U.S. Department of Justice, and will be

shine through the words of brother

and lots of opas!

interning this summer for Judge Beryl

Harry: “The joy Nicoletta and Jack bring

Howell at the U.S. District Court and for

me is immeasurable.” Sure Jack’s hockey

Harry graduated number one in his

Jack (Pegasus eighth grader) and

Lesson learned: honor your parents.

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012

9


PROGRAM

Doing the

Right Thing

by Dan Rosenberg

“It’s not the sex talk.” And so began the first student meeting of the Be Kind Committee.

A

s a newcomer to Pegasus, I am often asked what I like best about the school. The answer is easy: it’s the students. Whether I am on the field during recess,

taking part in the “Who Stole the Cupcakes?” forensic science unit in third grade, reading Stories with Holes and posing brainteasers with the fourth graders, or teaching computer programming and algebra to fifth graders, the highlights of my year have unquestionably been the moments that I have had with the third, fourth, and fifth graders.

Last fall, faculty members B.J. Crabtree, Karen Hurst, Dr.

Iriet Peshkess, Vicki Schmitz, Coach Charles Tyler, and I got together and formed the “Be Kind” committee. The committee was not formed in response to any particular occurrence at school, nor was it formed because we felt our students were not being kind to one another. Rather, we wanted to create a more formal social and emotional learning program that supplements what is already accomplished in many of the classrooms and to

and Hurst, as well as with several girls in the Lower School,

create a venue where students could discuss their feelings and

that meaningful conversations have taken place about kindness,

learn strategies for responding appropriately to conflicts.

friendships, and other topics of interest to these soon-to-be

middle school students. One of the most insightful conversations

Over these past few months, the six of us have met with the

third through fifth graders. Tyler, Crabtree, and I meet with the

among the girls occurred when some middle school girls

boys, while Schmitz, Peshkess, and Hurst converse with the

visited the fifth graders and spoke candidly about the social

girls. Initially, the students felt a bit apprehensive about being

pressures they faced and how they handled those pressures

split by gender. Did they think they were in trouble? Were they

both successfully and unsuccessfully. These stories sparked in

worried we were going to deliver some bad news? Tyler, though,

the fifth graders a willingness to share their own stories and to

quickly diagnosed the problem, and with five words put the

explore their own strategies for responding to social pressures

children at ease: “It’s not the sex talk.”

in ways that are characterized by kindness and good decision

making.

Since we meet with the students by gender, I can attest

first-hand only to what has happened during discussions with

the boys. Although I have not been present at the meetings with

occurred during the Be Kind meetings with the boys. I give

the girls, I know through conversations with Peshkess, Schmitz 10 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

I have been quite moved by the conversations that have


credit not only to the students for their willingness and courage to share what is on their minds, but also to Tyler and Crabtree for the relationships that they have built with the students over the years. Boys have shared heartfelt stories of times when they were treated unkindly, as well as times when they have treated others in a less than kind way. Also, boys have shared unpleasant experiences from as long as four years ago. These accounts have led to good discussions about how our actions and words — both good and bad — can have a lasting impact. We have asked the boys why people may act in an unkind way and have been very impressed with the thoughtfulness of their answers. One child mentioned that he thought someone might bully another child “because he feels insecure about himself.” Another stated that a person may be unkind because “maybe there’s something wrong in his life, and he doesn’t know what else to do about it.”

In some instances our meetings have become a forum to

problem solve, when the adults ask a few questions, but the students come up with their own answers. If, for example, excluding (or “discluding,” to use the student’s word) someone from a game is unkind, what do you do when that person does not want to play by the rules or is unable to keep up with the pace of the game? Is it OK to “disclude” them then? What can you say — and what shouldn’t you say — to that person? Most challenging of all, what if — gulp — that person is a girl?

In establishing the Be Kind committee with Crabtree,

Hurst, Peshkess, Schmitz and Coach Tyler, I hoped that we keep a forum in which meaningful conversations took place in an environment where the students felt safe to share what is on their minds. Every meeting Tyler, Crabtree, and I have had with the boys ended before everyone has had a chance to speak. In a way, ending a discussion when we still have multiple hands raised is difficult, but it is rewarding to see that there’s still plenty to talk about at our next meeting.

I feel honored to be part of the Be Kind committee. I

believe that it has been beneficial for our students and that the meetings we have had with the children have encouraged discussion that otherwise may not have happened. In addition, this committee provides an opportunity for the adults that make up the committee (myself included) to get know the children better and to spend time with them talking about their issues, concerns, and experiences.

My favorite moments this year have been those with the

students, observing them create, think, question, solve, discover, and play on a daily basis. Of those favorite moments, some of the “best of the best” observations have been these Be Kind committee meetings. Listening to students speak from the heart and work together to solve issues that matter to them is incredibly powerful. We have impressive children at Pegasus, and it is a pleasure to be part of their lives.

Telling students to “be kind” is easy. What, though, does

Dan Rosenberg is the Lower School Director. Contact: drosenberg@thepegasusschool.org

that really mean to a third, fourth, and fifth grader? The Be Kind committee works to address this issue while establishing a more systematic way for students to explore what kindness and other related values really are.

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 11


PROGRAM

cultivating pportunities to xplore

by Eva Polizzi

“Excuse me, do you have any books about

for a long afternoon and Atticus didn’t

be different and what puzzle pieces are

sharks?” asks a kindergarten student,

have to worry about her. The point of a

required to make it so. The question

his sweet little drawl at odds with the

library is to inspire imaginations.

“what if?” must be continually on the

seriousness in his face. “What about

mind of an innovator. What if an ill person

Luther King? I want a book about Luther

through an atlas, or reading a book—

was able to ingest a microscopic army to fight

King,” a pre-kindergarten Penguin

non-fiction or fiction—the imagination

an infection? What if I could touch the screen

informs us. “Martin Luther King? His

is engaged. A student’s brain has the

instead of using a mouse? If necessity is the

books are right here,” we respond. The

opportunity to visualize the world of

mother of invention, imagination must be

constant and un-remitting curiosity

a story, or comprehend the distance

the mother of innovation. To imagine the

of the students is both overwhelming

between a Southern plantation and a

world as being different—even just a tiny

and inspiring. And the questions don’t

Boston factory. When students use their

facet of it, such as the buttons on an ATM

stop with lower school students: older

imaginations to stretch their minds to

or an alphabet of gestures—is the first

students ask us everything from how to find the atomic number for nitrogen, to what’s our favorite eighteenth century novel, to who our picks are for March Madness.

When educators try to develop the

skills needed for students to succeed in a results-driven system, they face the challenge of stimulating the imagination in over-stimulated children. Why read

Whether listening to a story, flipping

In order to think differently, the imagination must be engaged...The question ‘what if’ must be constantly on the mind of the innovator.

step to creating a new world, a new way of life.

A new world is scary, and innovation

is risky. To return to Scout and the Maycomb Library, a library also serves as a safe place. It houses the records of all past successes and precedents for those seeking inspiration. But it also houses the records of all past failures and catastrophes. Revolutionaries, both

a book when you can see a movie and

understand, they create new worlds with

young and old, want to know what’s been

the imagining has been done for you?

new possibilities. Eventually, hopefully,

done before. Taking an army of elephants

Why bother flipping through a book

these new worlds will help change our

over the Pyrenees was an innovation, to

when the question can be typed into

own world.

say the least, and Hannibal’s tactics are

a search engine? Does anyone even

recorded. Marie Curie’s discovery that

know how to use an index anymore?

the way we live are the ones who, to

uranium itself is radioactive depended

Thankfully, Pegasus students do. And

quote Apple, “think different.” Well,

upon the years of research that came

the point of libraries in general, and ours

think differently. In order to think

before it, all recorded in a science library.

in particular, is not to wallow in the

differently, the imagination must be

And these records and inspirations aren’t

nostalgia of a simpler time when Scout

engaged. A brain must be allowed to

limited to the non-fiction section. Pegasus

Finch could ride her bike to the library

imagine how a situation would be, could

students know how Pip stood up for

12 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

The people who ultimately change


himself by asking for more and how the Ingalls family persevered through trial after trial on the American frontier.

A quiet library is a paradox

because while we ask that patrons be quiet and respectful of others, the quiet atmosphere allows for a raucous life of the mind. A quiet respite in the library allows the imagination to flourish, allows the mind to see all the possibilities available. A student sitting quietly in the library is really an undercover entrepreneur: plotting, planning, and wondering. He or she uses his or her imagination to change the world.

We’ve been reading a picture

book called, Me…Jane, by Patrick McDonnell, to the youngest children at Pegasus. McDonnell recently won a Caldecott Honor Medal for his beautiful watercolors in the book, but the core of the story is what truly reaches our students. It’s basically a biography of a Jane Goodall’s childhood and yet, it is utterly relatable to a pre-kindergarten student. They know what it’s like to carry their favorite stuffed animal with them (in Dr. Goodall’s case, a stuffed chimp named Jubilee). They know what it’s like to just sit down and wonder— about things, about life, about the world: our world, their world, the “what if” world. Eva Polizzi ’97 is the interim librarian. Contact: epolizzi@thepegasusschool.org

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 13


FACULTY FOCUS

Coach

Charles Tyler, Impact Player

by Charley Hurst

P

egasus students know Charles Tyler as their beloved

Physical Education teacher and Middle School advisor, and as both a coach of sports, and a coach of life. He is

known to generations of Pegasus students by a single name: “Coach.” His enthusiasm and passion, his big heart, and his booming voice, permeate the Pegasus campus. I set out to find out how one man could have such a profound impact on an institution. I found the answers in his personal history, and they were not entirely what I expected.

Tyler was born in 1940, in Washington, D.C., which at

the time was part of the segregated South. As a young boy, he couldn’t go into most theaters or restaurants due to his color. He attended segregated grammar and middle schools, and it wasn’t until high school that he went to school with white children.

When Tyler was thirteen, his father died in a hunting

accident. He, his mother and four siblings were devastated by

After leaving the Army, Tyler took a job in Chicago, where

his father’s death. His mother took a job, went back to school,

he worked as a manager, successfully running a series of

and became a nurse. Years later, she told Tyler that his father

manufacturing plants for an industrial brake manufacturer

had been rushed, still alive, to a nearby hospital after the

called Abex. When he was passed over for an important

accident. He had been refused treatment because he was black,

promotion in favor of a demonstrably less qualified colleague,

and he died before he could obtain treatment. His mother

Tyler challenged the company’s institutional bullying

sheltered her children from this truth, to steer them away

and ultimately obtained justice in the form of a favorable

from hatred. Her perseverance and positive outlook in the face

settlement.

of this tragedy were a huge influence on Tyler. Her response

exemplified the strength of character that was ultimately

snowstorm in Chicago in 1967. A year later they were married

passed on to her son.

and decided to look for a house in the suburbs. Their realtor

offered them a single house on a flooded street and told them

Following high school, Tyler was recruited to Lafayette

Tyler met his wife, Jan, at an impromptu party during a

College in Easton, Pennsylvania, to run track. He was in the

that every other house in the area had been sold. They tried

ROTC and received a BS in Mechanical Engineering. After

another realtor and promptly found their dream house. Upon

graduation, he volunteered for the Army, serving three years,

learning that all those “sold” houses were in fact available,

and retiring as a captain.

Tyler and Jan challenged the first realtor and the case was

14 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL


settled. A week after moving into their new home, a fire was

The CHOICES Program evolved into the Advisement

set, burning the kitchen and family room. The perpetrator

Program, and ultimately moved into the Pegasus curriculum.

was never caught. To this day, despite the evil Tyler has

encountered, he maintains the strength of character to stand

he has stressed sportsmanship over winning and has

up for himself and what is right. His outlook on life is positive,

focused on the means, rather than the ends. He teaches the

and he has not lost his love for people—all people.

stronger athletes to improve their skills by incorporating the

weaker athletes into their team’s efforts, and he teaches the

Tyler moved from Abex to ARCO, initially turning around

For the nearly twenty years Tyler has taught at Pegasus,

a money-losing plant, and at the same time successfully

weaker athletes to feel good about their level of effort and

instituting an ex-offender program, helping and inspiring

improvement, and to not be concerned that others might be

individuals who might otherwise be shunned. He says that

more adept. As a result of his personal history, Coach Tyler

“dealing with people the right way” is the key to successful

preached a message of anti-bullying long before it was stylish,

plant management, a lesson he shares with Pegasus students.

asking his students: “Why not be concerned about how

In 1982, ARCO moved Tyler and his family to California,

other people feel?” When teaching respect for others, he also

where he managed plants in Long Beach and City of Industry,

sometimes draws upon his past experiences.

and was later promoted to more senior jobs within the

company. The couple and their four children settled in

how deeply he cares about them as a person, and that Coach

Huntington Beach, where Tyler coached his children’s sports teams, served as commissioner of the local AYSO, and even coached the girls’ soccer team at a local high school. He also dreamed of one day being a teacher.

Tyler retired from ARCO in

1994, obtained his emergency teaching credential, and began working as a substitute teacher at

And Pegasus students love him for it. Each of them knows

For the nearly twenty years Tyler has taught at Pegasus, he has stressed sportsmanship over winning and has focused on the means, rather than the ends.

can always be counted on to help. To walk into his office tucked away at the far end of the boys’ locker room, is to enter a shrine to that love. Every inch is covered by cards and pictures and memorabilia signed by literally hundreds of Pegasus students who thank him for playing such an important role in their lives. The same message is conveyed in the school’s yearbooks, which are chockfull of odes to Coach, and his impact

The Pegasus School. Founder Laura Hathaway asked him to join Pegasus full-time as the school’s

on the lives of his students.

P.E. teacher. He jumped at the opportunity.

Bat Mitzvahs, and he remains in touch with dozens of Pegasus

Tyler’s P.E. classes were large, and Dr. Hathaway

Tyler has attended more than 100 Pegasus student Bar and

expressed concern that he needed to watch all of the children

graduates, writing college recommendations and even job

all of the time. Coach said it couldn’t be done and suggested

references. Outside of school hours, he attends games, recitals,

instead that he talk to the students about the importance of

dances and swim meets for Pegasus students and graduates.

doing the right thing, whether he was watching them or not.

He has even been the subject of college essays. Coach says it is

And that began the character education program at Pegasus,

as if he has “a thousand grandstudents,” and he is proud that

and was the genesis of Coach’s axiom, known to every

he “had some influence on their lives.”

Pegasus student that “character is how you act when no one is

looking.”

“the best job I ever had.”

And he says one more thing: that working at Pegasus is

Tyler expanded his informal lessons on character into

his “CHOICES” Program, which he initially taught in his P.E. classes. “CHOICES” is an acronym for: Courage, Humor,

Charley Hurst is a transactional real estate lawyer, and the father of five children. This is his nineteenth and final year as a Pegasus parent. He served on the Board of Trustees from 1996 to 2005. Contact: Charles.Hurst@sedgwicklaw.com

Openness, Integrity, Commitment, Excellence, Self-Reliance.

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 15


FEATURE

Josh Morrison

Quiet Leader BIG Effect 16 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

by Nancy Fries


F

rom the classroom to the

Williamson says. “Leadership skills

courageous—and following the principles

boardroom, from the playground

give young people the confidence and

of values-based leadership—can help

to the political arena, our culture

independence to make wise decisions.”

them succeed both personally and

extols the virtue of leadership. We

professionally. Williamson would add

envision leaders as pillars of popularity,

leaders who are confident, caring, and

self-advocacy as a critical leadership skill.

student-council presidents, and denizens

courageous. This aspect of our mission

of positive change. Indeed, Pegasus

closely mirrors what Northwestern

leadership skill, but I do,” Williamson

strives to develop leaders in traditional

University management professor Harry

shares. “From kindergarten all the way

ways, like public speaking, community

Kraemer calls “values-based leadership,”

through middle school, our faculty allows

service, sports, and much more. But what

which includes four principles: self-

the students to develop interactive,

about the student who runs for office and

reflection, balance, self-confidence, and

trusting relationships.” Williamson says

doesn’t win? Or the one who leads a quiet

genuine humility.

those relationships give students the

yet exemplary life without reaching some

confidence to interact with adults and

objective pinnacle of achievement? What

isn’t about emulating a role model or

At Pegasus, we strive to develop

“Becoming the best kind of leader

“Many wouldn’t view that as a

advocate for themselves throughout life.

exactly does it mean to be a leader?

developing values-based leadership in its

“Leadership is much more about

Zurn explains that Pegasus excels in

character, finding out who you are and

students in part because it’s a safe place

what you do well, and seeing what kind

to try new activities:

of impact you can have on other people,”

states John Zurn, Head of School. Middle

experiences, challenging them to try

School Director Joe Williamson agrees.

on different hats, and building up their

confidence through opportunities to

“When I think of leadership

“It’s about giving students

among middle school students, I’m not

demonstrate their leadership; Leadership

thinking just about being student body

is ultimately about figuring out your

president or captain of the football team,”

role, what you’re good at, what you like,

Williamson comments. “Leadership is

what you can do with passion and have a

also being comfortable with who you

positive impact on other people.”

are, having the ability to resist peer

and media pressure, and displaying

passions with an ever-growing choice

Pegasus plants the seeds of potential

confidence in your personal and academic

a historic figure,” Kraemer, the author

of activities such as, environmental

decisions.”

of From Values to Action: The Four

sustainability programs, debate, robotics,

Principles of Values-Based Leadership,

and lacrosse. Each curricular and

and particularly in middle school,

wrote in Forbes magazine. “Rather, your

extracurricular activity has its natural

students are deciding just what kind

leadership must be rooted in who you are

leaders—the math whiz, the lead in the

of people they want to be. Torn at

and what matters most to you.”

play, the queen bee of the playground.

times between fitting in and following

But every Pegasus student has the

their moral compass, students rely on

aren’t leaders in the traditional sense.

opportunity to lead in his or her own

leadership to help them make good

They may never play quarterback or

way: by demonstrating a solid work ethic,

choices. A leader may be the one who

first violin, run a company, or seek

by encouraging others, or by choosing the

stands up to a bully on the playground or

political office. But maybe they’ll be

road less traveled. Here we profile several

resists the temptation to cheat. A leader

the key member of a research team that

unique Pegasus student leaders.

may quietly demonstrate kindness and

develops a new drug or a trusted advisor

respect to others. A leader acts as a role

on foreign policy. Maybe they’ll write

Emma Robertson

model through his or her daily behavior.

for a newspaper or teach at a school like

Eighth grader Emma Robertson reflects

“Values have become confused,

Pegasus. No matter which path they

the traits Pegasus seeks to develop in all

muddled and vague for this generation,”

choose, being confident, caring, and

of its students. Take courage, for example:

Throughout their years at Pegasus,

Many bright and gifted students

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 17


After losing an election in seventh

grade, Emma could have given up on

on a different trait,” she notes. “After

disease and requires great maturity to

the Associated Student Body (ASB). But

all those years you are well-rounded,

manage successfully,” says Pegasus nurse

Emma wanted to make a difference at

you are more or less organized, you’re

Karen Hurst. “Josh and Katelyn have set a

Pegasus and saw ASB as an opportunity

hardworking, you’re confident, and you

remarkable example for our students.”

to do so.

can work with others.

diabetes with confidence and grace,

“I’ve always gravitated toward being

a leader,” she claims. “I’m not the best

“Every year at Pegasus kind of focuses

“Since this is the only school I’ve been

to, everything I am is because of Pegasus.”

“Diabetes is a very complicated

Josh and Katelyn manage their

quietly testing their blood sugar levels

at organization or the best at a bunch

at regular intervals throughout the day,

of different things, but I’m able to see

delivering extra insulin after meals, and

people’s strengths and put everything

eating sweet snacks if their sugar levels

together.”

dip too low. For Katelyn, diagnosed at age

three, it’s been a part of life as long as she

So Emma gave ASB another chance,

and this year her fellow students elected

can remember. For Josh, diagnosed at age

her president. She brings to her position

ten, it was a life change, but it didn’t have

another key Pegasus trait—caring.

to change his life.

“Our biggest goal in ASB,” she states,

“I was diagnosed in fourth grade, and

“is to make everyone feel included and

third grade was all about independence,”

to have everyone feel important.” To that

mentions Josh. He credits his teachers

end, ASB coordinated an anonymous

with helping him develop the skills

Valentine card exchange this year so

to manage his diabetes once he was

every middle school student would

diagnosed. Whereas students at some

receive a card and treat on his or her

other schools have to leave the classroom

locker. They’ve also organized a ping-

to test their blood sugar levels, Josh is

called “Elimination” that encourages

Josh Morrison & Katelyn Baker

students to interact with each other, and

Ernest Hemingway said, “Courage is

from a bad one. “Pegasus is special, I

other fun activities designed to foster a

grace under pressure.” Pegasus seventh

guess,” he says.

sense of community.

graders Katelyn Baker and Josh Morrison

exhibit courage every day at school as

culture of independence contributes

organization and time management

they manage their diabetes. Both have

to her own responsible approach to

skills,” shares Middle School Activities

Type 1—or juvenile—diabetes, which

managing diabetes, “When we get older,

Director Christine Bridges, who is also

causes dangerous levels of sugar in the

our parents won’t always be there to test

an advisor to ASB. “She is well-respected

blood.

our blood sugars or change our pump site.

by her peers and is a good leader and

We have a big responsibility to take care

listener. She is willing to learn and is

just two active, bright students. Katelyn

of ourselves.”

open-minded.”

figure skates, plays ice hockey, surfs, and

would like to be an interior designer.

“They see us test our blood sugars and

who also dances, participates in National

Josh plays lacrosse and hopes to parlay

give ourselves shots every day, and they

Charity League, and works on the

his public speaking skills into a career

admire that we are able to do this,” Josh

yearbook, Emma exudes both confidence

as a news anchor, lawyer, or President

states. “I also admire my friends because

and humility. She speaks with genuine

of the United States. Only by watching

they keep their grades up, they have

passion about the life lessons she has

closely would anyone notice that both

sports, and they have responsibilities, but

learned through her ten years at Pegasus

wear pumps that deliver insulin to their

I definitely think they look up to us.”

and how they have shaped her into the

bloodstreams.

pong tournament with faculty, a game

“Emma has good communication,

A distinguished honor roll student,

person she is today. 18 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

At first glance, Katelyn and Josh are

allowed to test his sugar level in class and his friends even know a good reading

Katelyn agrees that the Pegasus

Fellow students respect the pair.

These two Pegasus leaders act as

Junior Ambassadors for the Juvenile


Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).

priority on developing collaborative skills

As ambassadors, they help publicize

in its students.

the organization’s mission of finding

a cure for diabetes and participate in

the classroom to the football field to the

fundraising events. They also support

Kindergarten wing, where he meets up

and advise newly diagnosed children.

with a buddy several times a week as part

So when sixth grader Melanie Wolter

of the Service Learning elective. “When

was diagnosed this year—her first at

I first saw the elective I didn’t know we

Pegasus—Josh and Katelyn reached out.

were going to get to go to kindergarten

and have lots of fun,” states Davis, who

“It was so helpful just to know there

Davis works well with others from

are other active, athletic, and helpful

chose the elective for altruistic reasons.

students at Pegasus who have Type 1

“Giving back to what the community

diabetes,” Melanie says. “It is one thing

gives to you I think is very important.”

when a doctor says the disease doesn’t have to limit you; it is another thing to actually know people who are examples

respect for Davis because he puts

says kindergarten teacher Nancy Larimer,

of that.”

everything on the line in what he does,

who sees Davis work with her students.

but does nothing without dignity and

lives,” Hurst comments. “The proof of

character,” says James Swiger, social

where everyone knows everyone,” Davis

character is how we react to those times

studies teacher and football coach. “He

shares. “You create bonds with not only

and how we move forward every day in

leads through his actions and deeds,

your friends, but also your teachers and

the pursuit of success, happiness, and a

which are far more powerful than words.”

some of the parents that come here. It

full life.” In this respect, Josh and Katelyn

gets you to feel comfortable around many

personify the type of leaders Pegasus

first glance he is a typical eighth grader,

different types of people and to be able

seeks to develop—confident, caring, and

but moments into a conversation he

to adapt and overcome any hardships or

truly courageous.

exhibits maturity and poise beyond his

difficulties.”

years. Not one to sing his own praises, he

attributes his personal success in large

to bring out the leader in all of our

In any grade at any school, students and

part to the only school has ever attended.

students. In a place where they feel

teachers alike can identify a few obvious

comfortable being themselves, expressing

leaders. At Pegasus, we also celebrate

teaches you lots of valuable skills you

their ideas and trying new things, every

the students who lead by quiet example.

can take with you,” reflects Davis. “It

Pegasus student has the opportunity

Davis Clement is one such student.

teaches you teamwork, and there are a

to lead through actions and deeds with

lot of group activities where you have to

confidence, courage, and compassion.

“Everyone has difficult times in their

Davis Clement

By all objective measures, Davis is

“Adults and peers alike have such

“Davis is patient and kind and uses

Yet Davis’s words are powerful. At

“From the beginning years, Pegasus

a Pegasus success story: A student here

work to get along with people you might

since preschool, he is a distinguished

not work as well with.” An interesting

honor roll student. Davis was an all-star

insight in light of a recent New York Times

and captain of the Fall 2011 championship

article by former Harvard University

flag football team; he also sails and plays

President Lawrence H. Summers

rugby and lacrosse. As Assistant Senior

noting the increasing importance

Patrol Leader for Boy Scout Troop 911,

of collaboration in the workplace.

he holds the second highest leadership

According to Summers, the most

position in the troop. But what really

important attribute sought by a leading

makes Davis a leader is the manner in

investment bank is the ability to work

which he conducts himself.

with others, and Pegasus places a high

every opportunity to teach a life lesson,”

“Pegasus has that community feel

That “community feel” is intended

Nancy Gelston Fries is a freelance writer and the mother of Ian ’10, a sophomore at Sage Hill School, and Eric ’14. Contact: Nancyfries@cox.net

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 19


FEATURE

Equipping our Children for a Rapidly Changing World

by Mohamed El-Erian

J

udging from current economic trends, our children will inherit a different world when they reach their adult years.

As caring parents, our responsibility is to continue to do our utmost to equip them to navigate the changing sets of risks and opportunities. We try to do so in many ways, including by providing them access to a great education at Pegasus and, equally important, helping them understand that how they think

is as important of what they think.

Baby Boomers grew up in the comfort of knowing that the

United States — and, more broadly, the West — was the model that most other countries in the world aspired to emulate. The “western system” was seen as most effective in creating opportunities, delivering prosperity, and rewarding talent and hard work — so much so that western culture became readily exportable (especially when it came to the American variety), as did our habits, playbooks, and aspirations.

These days, however, the West faces considerable

headwinds. We have allowed our debts to get too large and our economies to lose too much vibrancy and competitiveness. Our educational systems have lagged, and our emphasis on hard work has often given way to the temptation of credit-financed short cuts. In the process, we stumbled into a destructive financial crisis that will take years to overcome.

As the challenges have grown bigger and more complex,

our political system seems to have fallen victim to extreme polarization and short-termism. Political interactions have become more divisive and overly tactical (as opposed to strategic), and the outcomes are outright dysfunctional in far too many cases. As an illustration, recall how last summer’s political bickering pushed the U.S. to the verge of a default and, in the process, undermined the country’s sacred AAA credit ratings and undermined confidence in the economy.

The West is now having problems creating enough jobs,

funding small businesses, and facilitating social mobility. Meanwhile, income and wealth inequalities have grown

20 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

materially, and unemployment remains worrisomely high, thus contributing to the damaging trio of record long-term joblessness (with over 40% of the unemployed having been out of work for more than 26 weeks), extremely high youth unemployment (a staggering 24% for sixteen to nineteen year olds) and weak social safety nets.

These worrisome economic trends, along with the fact that

our elected representatives are not doing enough to address them, have led a growing number of analysts to a disturbing and unusual conclusion: for the first time in a very long time, our children’s generation may be worse off than that of their parents.

It should come as no surprise that the global standing and

traditional dominance of the Western system are being eroded.


It should also come as no big surprise that grass root protest

of the measurement metrics, various analyses suggest that they

movements, usually youth driven, have formed in an increasing

already outscore us in mathematics and sciences, especially

number of western countries — from the Occupy movements in

when it comes to elementary and secondary education — a

the UK and U.S. to the Indignados in Spain and protestors in the

stunning outcome given that we have out spent them for years, only to lose our edge and even fall

streets of many European capitals, including Athens, Paris, and Rome.

The West’s loss of self-

confidence is even more pronounced when compared to what is happening in the emerging world. Several countries — including giants such as Brazil, China, India, and Indonesia — are in the midst of an historic developmental breakout phase. There, economic growth is more robust, wages are rising,

The most important thing is to stress to our students the importance of a proper education; and educational establishments must continue to make learning an engaging and interactive process.

behind. Even their technology orientation at school is starting to outpace some of what is happening here.

No one can tell for sure how

the world will accommodate these two very divergent trends in Western and emerging countries. In particular, will it do so in an orderly and cooperative fashion; or will tensions and trade wars dominate? What is clear is that there is little

competitiveness is increasing, and financial assets are growing. In the process, these countries are

chance of going back to the global configuration that most of us

closing the gap with the West, and they are starting to assert

had as children and that we have grown comfortable with.

themselves more forcefully on the global stage.

Remember, some of these countries have also been investing

equipping our children with the right tool kit to navigate what,

effectively in education and, often, taking bold forward-looking

to use a famous phrase from Chairman Bernanke of the Federal

views of curriculums. While we may disagree with the specifics

Reserve, is an “unusually uncertain outlook.” Some of this

I believe that we can and should react now in the hope of

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 21


on educational achievements, there is an enormous dispersion around the average national unemployment rate of 8%. Only 4% of those with bachelor degree lack a job, yet a whopping 14% of those without a high school diploma are unemployed. And these figures only speak to the overall level of education. Just imagine if the numbers were adjusted for quality.

Working with schools throughout our children’s academic

career, and certainly today with Pegasus, we must help them to be intellectually agile. We must encourage them to be analytically curious, to explore, and to question consistently. Indeed, as the world changes, long-standing approaches may well prove less effective in dealing with the range of challenges that a growing student faces.

Open mindsets will be critical to our children’s ability to

navigate tomorrow’s world. When compared to our generation, they will need to be much better at spotting paradigm changes. They will be challenged to be more skillful and timely in adapting their approaches and analytical frameworks. They will have to do certain things better and others differently. And they will need to do so without sacrificing the educational foundation equipping can be done at home, and some will also require that our children’s schools and colleges step up to the task of being even more responsive in a rapidly changing world.

The most important thing is to stress to our children

the importance of a proper education; and educational establishments must continue to make learning an engaging and interactive process. This process speaks to a range of requirements, many of which enable our children to understand, prepare and navigate a more volatile outlook. Importantly, it is about both how and what they think. It is about maintaining agile tools of analysis. It is about mixing and matching the best of different approaches. And it is about understanding that education is an investment for life, is a way to handle both the expected and unexpected, and is not necessarily for immediate consumption and gratification.

Unlike money and material possessions that our children

may inherit, education is something that can never be taken away from them. Once armed with a proper academic foundation, they can rely on it for a lifetime, to provide them with a rock solid basis for good analysis and sound decision making.

Then there are the numbers that, unambiguously and

clearly, stress the importance of education. Look at the latest employment report published by the government. Depending

22 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

that anchors them every single day.


I believe that it is particularly important for us, as parents and

through the school, to encourage our children to be open in

Pegasus, our students are part of a special group of students

a global and humble manner. By doing so, we can help them

with access to talented teachers, a strong educational culture,

recognize that other cultures have much to teach us. Different

and superior facilities and approaches. But, critically, they must

cultural perspectives enrich rather than confuse discussions.

not think of this privilege as an “entitlement.” Rather, it is an

And we can help them understand that a previously-alien way of

opportunity — or, to be more precise, an investment — to put

looking at familiar issues may, in fact, be complimentary if not

them in good stead to grow as individuals, to provide for their

superior to old ones.

own families, and to contribute to society.

Just because our children will confront playbooks that differ

We should have no doubt. Because of their exposure to

Neither our children nor any of us should forget that there

from those we grew up with, we must not conclude that they are

are others who are not as lucky and fortunate. This is much more

wrong. Moreover, revisions to playbooks need not be seen just

than a moral issue. It also speaks to our self-interest. If social

as involving risks; they also point to tremendous opportunities,

justice and fairness continue on their worsening trajectory of

especially for those with first/early mover advantages. In doing

recent years, we will all find it very hard to, using a housing

so, we should increasingly recognize that other countries and

analogy, be a good house in a deteriorating neighborhood.

cultures are bringing new ideas to the table and doing so in a

manner that can be beneficial to millions around the world.

often be unsettling. The world is going through quite a bit of it

Finally, we will also be constantly challenged at home

right now, and it will continue to do so in the years ahead. By

and at school to make our children aware of their broader

recognizing this change explicitly, we can enrich discussions

surroundings, including the world’s realities and inequalities,

both at home and at Pegasus on what it will take to ensure that

and to make them appreciate their privileges and their social

our children can navigate well what is an inherently fluid yet

responsibilities.

exciting future.

Whichever way you look at it, fundamental change can

Mohamed El-Erian is the CEO of PIMCO and author of the best seller, When Markets Collide. Contact: Mohamed.El-Erian@pimco.com

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 23


FEATURE

An

verxpanding ducation:

Entrepreneurialism and the Importance of Economic Literacy by Marrie Stone At Pegasus, the three “R”s of traditional education have long shared the stage with three equally important “E”s: economics, entrepreneurship, and empathy. In a climate of increasing financial uncertainty, economic preparedness is essential for a generation that will live longer with less resources. But just how equipped is the average American child, and how do Pegasus students compare?

Only recently did Education Secretary

Arne Duncan call educators into action, urging them to incorporate economic literacy into their curriculum. “As important as reading and math and social studies and science, I think today more than ever financial literacy has to be part of that,” Duncan stated at a speech at the Treasury Department in November 2011. “To continue to have a population that is relatively illiterate in these matters I think has real negative consequences to our democracy.”

To give this comment some poignant

context, according to the Council for Economic Education, as of 2010, only thirteen states require any course work in personal finance, or include any economic concepts at all before high school graduation. This is up from seven states in 2007. And that still doesn’t guarantee 24 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL


that economics will be taught. “The adage ‘if it isn’t tested, it isn’t taught’ is unfortunately true in this case,” remarks Gary Stern, former president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis and acting president of the Council for Economic Education.

But at Pegasus, that adage doesn’t

enter the educational equation. Concepts such as taxation, business structure, and interview skills are introduced as early as second grade. Business begins when children are seven years old. As part of their social studies unit on taxation, students bring products from home and hold a swap meet, where they can sell for Pegasus Bucks (a currency more desired than cash). At the end of the exercise, they are asked to calculate the taxes on earnings, and learn about how those taxes service the community. The children visit local businesses and Huntington Beach City Hall, where they interview shopkeepers and public employees, appreciate the differences between needs and wants, goods and services, as well as consumerism. The Community Unit culminates during the holidays, when the children earn money at home and pool funds with classmates to purchase toys for the Sparks of Love

who have expanded those products to a

of economics in action. Supply and

broader market, to a number of Pegasus

demand, inflation, marketing, real estate,

parents who have established their own

taxation, the list too long and the ideas

charitable endeavors, the community

too integrated into every aspect of the

fosters an atmosphere of intense curiosity,

curriculum to break them all down.

creativity, charity, and enterprise.

be familiar with the phrase “economic

book Outliers,” comments Zurn.

literacy,” they know their stuff. They

“Gladwell claims it takes 10,000 hours of

know the desirable pieces of real estate

time at task to master something. Why

(that sacred space near the rain forest

not start that clock as early as possible?”

wall), and they know the premium

Pegasus has done just that. In a

they’re required to pay to get it. They

variety of ways, in every grade, Pegasus

know if they make a run on the bank,

is one of the few schools that teach those

they won’t be able to take out additional

critical financial skills in a charitable

loans in the future. They know the

context.

dangers of debt and the uncertainties

program.

“I’m reminded of Malcolm Gladwell’s

Although nine year olds may not

Open for Business

“There’s an entrepreneurial spirit

that exists in southern California,

For two days in the middle of May,

particularly this area of Orange County,

the Pegasus third grade classrooms

that doesn’t exist in other parts of

transform into micro-centers of

the country,” says John Zurn, Head of

commerce. There are glittery snow globes

School. “Coming here [from Maryland]

and wiggly headbands. There are pencils

articulates this issue better for me. This is

encrusted with pipe-cleaner creatures

a unique area.”

and pillows brimming with buttons. Last

That spirit is, indeed, palpable.

year’s hot selling eraser buddies are, this

From Pegasus programs like Third

year, passé. This is the hustle and bustle

Grade Businesses and Entrepreneur

of deals being made, dollars earned,

Day that push students to research and

and children learning—viscerally and

develop unique products, to graduates

first-hand—the complicated concepts

of inflation. Most of all, they know the power of the almighty Pegasus Buck, and they’re motivated to earn it.

Third Grade Businesses have been

in operation for seventeen years. “What began as a small project,” states third grade teacher Elaine Sarkin, “became a year-long philosophy.” Sarkin explains how the program touches every aspect of the third grade experience, from reading and writing skills, to art and design, to mathematics, to logic and analysis, to behavior modification and discipline policies. “There’s nothing worse to these children than losing money. When they PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 25


have to open their wallet and part with

“These students come back, over and

are split into small groups within their

$10 (in Pegasus Bucks) because they

over, telling us they were so far ahead

math classes. They’re given a hypothetical

missed an assignment, it’s horrible.”

in their college economics classes

$100,000 to invest in the market. They

because they lived it and experienced

must invest in one green company and an

to run businesses,” mentions Sarkin.

it. Economics makes sense to them in

international company. The rest is largely

“When the children apply for a business

ways that don’t need further instruction,”

up to them.

license, they need the endorsement of

remarks Olivadoti.

every teacher. Only honest and honorable

philosophy, the program lends itself

people open businesses. That’s the

into Entrepreneur Day, which Nicolas

well to other aspects of the curriculum.

background check. From P.E. to art to

Jaber ’08 started and John Sullivan,

The students can connect current

Spanish, everyone needs to sign off.”

former lower school director, continued.

events, politics, climate changes, and

“Only honorable citizens are able

The program blends beautifully

Consistent with Pegasus’s

their parallel African studies to what’s

Every year, even within the same

year, the economy of the classrooms

happening to their stocks. The program

change. Some classes are richer, while

also has an essay component, which

some go bankrupt and are forced to

culminates with an oral presentation,

take out loans from another. “Last

including market research of companies,

year,” reflects third grade teacher Vicki

graphs, and charts prepared in Excel, and

Olivadoti, “the students threatened

personal reflections on the process.

to strike. They found their economic

strength in unity and refused to raise

school train, we are able to build on all

their hands, answer questions, or

those economic lessons the children have

participate. It was effective, for a while,

amassed,” says fifth grade teacher Kristen

and very creative.”

Brady. “The depth of a fifth grader’s

understanding of economic issues is

The children learn about

“Being the caboose of the lower

partnerships, splitting profits, and that

remarkable. They evaluate companies and

good friends don’t always make ideal

make decisions in a way many adults are

business partners. They learn about

unable to do.”

bankruptcy and loans. When they can’t

Fourth and fifth graders are responsible

generate effective business ideas, they

for raising their own start-up costs in

learn about consultants (their teachers)

real dollars, doing chores, or otherwise

and consulting fees. They learn about

working for the funds. They design and

long-term savings, keeping accurate

produce their own products, either as

accounts, salaries, and banking. And they

individual ventures or in a partnership

learn the value of hard work, and the

arrangement. In addition, they market

financial consequences of career choices.

and sell, and they use their profits to pay

back investors and donate the proceeds

“Different jobs have different

salaries from year to year,” says Sarkin.

to a charity voted on by the student-body.

“Sometimes the children are eager to do

some tasks; other years I can’t pay them

“from the skills they acquired in third

enough to do them.”

grade.”

Countless former students have

returned to report that this experience heavily shaped their economic experiences in high school and college.

26 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

“It’s a beautiful build,” states Zurn,

Growing Up and Giving Back So where do all these early economics lessons lead? The foundation of the Pegasus education is, and has always been, domestic and global awareness, personal responsibility, empathy, and giving. Those aren’t just lofty words in a Vision Plan. Every concept translates to tangible actions, from school-organized fundraising campaigns for international disasters to individual volunteer efforts within local communities.

Taking Stock

“These students are incredibly

compassionate,” states James Conti,

The Stock Market Game begins for the

Middle School social studies teacher.

fifth graders in late winter. Children

“They’re financially savvy, and they want


Ultimately, many students choose

to bring these lessons back home and incorporate them into their individual lives. Seventh grader Gabriela Goffman, for example, has been involved in the National Charity League since first grade. She has volunteered more than 300 service hours in a Costa Mesa thrift shop. The proceeds of her efforts and service have been used to fund a number of organizations, including High Hopes and the American Cancer Society.

“We live in such an insulated

community,” reflects her mother, Marie Goffman. “Giving our children some financial and real-world perspective of Students at Elie Dubois School, Haiti. Photo courtesy of Grace Lau, Global Nomads Group (GNG)

to make a difference.”

lunches provide the primary incentive for

those children to attend school.”

The lessons translate in countless

ways. During the 2007-08 school year,

Recycling proceeds are also used to

students met with Benjamin Ajak and

fund a non-profit micro-lending company

Alephonsion Deng, two of the Lost Boys

called KIVA. KIVA unites business

of Sudan, and Judy Bernstein, co-author

owners in impoverished nations with

of They Poured Fire On Us From the Sky.

individuals and organizations wishing

From that meeting, they were inspired

to loan small amounts of money that can

to initiate a fundraising campaign to

make a big impact. Students are able to

drill wells in the village where Deng

evaluate business plans, investment risks,

and Ajak came from and provide much-

and economic impact of dollars donated.

needed water to Africa. Others had an

“Every aspect gets discussed,” notes

opportunity to speak with students from

Conti. “Students are aware, for example,

the Elie Dubois School in Port-au-Prince,

of how women are treated in Pakistan

Haiti, after the earthquake in 2010 to

and whether their inferior standing will

determine need. Seventh grade students

impact their ability to repay debt.”

spent the entire 2010-11 academic year

working with a team of three other

are challenged to engage in a cost/

schools from around the United States.

benefit analysis. “Projects like KIVA are

Pegasus students alone raised $2,500

no-brainers,” says Conti. “The cost is so

(with funds matched by the Bezos Family

small and the benefits are so immediate

Foundation) to rebuild the school. Still

and great. But extending that lesson

others recycled cans and bottles and sent

to working hard for grades or making

that money to Kenya to fund student

nutritional choices at lunch, and it gets

lunches. “Those lunches are the difference

more complicated. They might still make

between children eating and not eating

bad decisions on occasion, but at least

on any given day,” remarks Conti. “School

they’re aware of the costs.”

Through every encounter, students

what’s happening around them, very close by, is invaluable. Making them realize what a lucky and unique situation they live in, it’s really changed Gabby’s perspective on the world.”

Perspective is the foundation of a

Pegasus education. “There’s a vast socioeconomic divide in Orange County between the coast and the inland areas,” mentions John Zurn. “Lots of social issues, immigration issues, and economic issues that aren’t being redressed well. This is a unique area. There is an opportunity for our students to see, first hand, the impact of their actions. Pushing students to understand the cultural divides and differences lends an understanding of a larger view of the world and how it works. This makes them confident, successful, and employable. It makes them feel like they can make a difference.” Marrie Stone is the Director of Public Affairs and co-host of “Writers on Writing” at KUCI, 88.9FM, in Irvine, and the mother of Haley Rovner (‘15). Contact: marriestone@gmail.com

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 27


Home Economics Bringing Money (Lessons) Home by Marrie Stone SAVING THE RELUCTANT SAVER

T

account and the interest rate was 2% per

pay.

year. After five years, would you have:

A. More than $102

siblings. One will spend, the other save.

B. Exactly $102

One is the family loan shark, happily

C. Less than $102?”

doling out funds and charging exorbitant

Fifty percent of them did not realize

interest to another who’s perpetually

hirty percent of Americans save nothing for retirement, according

to a report from PBS NewsHour last year. And those who do save aren’t saving much. The Employee Benefit Research Institute reports 43% of working Americans have less than $10,000 in retirement savings.

Of course, some of these Americans

are just able to meet their monthly expenditures. But others lack an appreciation of the basic mathematics that underlies saving.

Americans fifty and older were asked

by PBS:

28 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

“Suppose you had $100 in a savings

are asking for advances on next week’s There’s often little similarity between

(A) was the blindingly right answer.

broke.

This philosophy toward money—about

what we spend, what we save, and what

easy. Lectures and hard lessons are often

we know about economics—trickles

outmatched by the seductive lure of a TV

directly down to our children.

commercial pitching the next hot gadget.

Even after the personal, and perhaps

Teaching the spender to save isn’t

Sheila Bair, former Chairperson of the

painful, financial lessons of third grade,

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation

some children remain reluctant savers.

(FDIC) and author of Rock, Brock, And

They’re the students whose allowance

the Savings Shock and Isabel’s Car Wash,

never reaches their wallets; the ones who

argues that instilling relatively simple


math lessons early on could have averted

and their ability by age three to delay

Proctor & Gamble. “I think she liked the

(or at least lessened) the latest financial

their gratification. Delayed gratification

decent dividend yields, name recognition,

crisis.

is a better predictor of economic success

and decent P/E’s,” he states.

In Rock, Brock, And the Savings

than is education, grades, academic test

Shock, aimed at grades 3 – 5, twins Rock

scores, intelligence tests, or childhood

to buy. Riedl says he’s not sure why, but

and Brock are offered an intriguing

standard of living. Self-control, Moffitt

Charlotte has confided to her mom that,

deal by their grandfather. They will

says, is clearly more important than any

“maybe I’m a little young for this.”

earn $1 per week for household chores.

other skill we can teach or measure in our

If they’ve spent their dollar by week’s

children.

with daughter Haley. In November 2009,

end, they’ll get another dollar the next

when Haley was eight, Rovner opened a

week. But if they’ve saved that dollar,

Moffitt, “Is going to live to be, on average,

small e*Trade account in her name.

Grandpa will double it, matching what

well above 100 years old. That means it’s

they’ve saved. This compounding effect

absolutely essential for every child to

“She named off products she liked to buy,

will go on indefinitely. At the end of the

learn how to develop self-control skills so

we found the parent companies of each

ten-week experiment, Brock has saved

they can avoid dependency, poor health

product, and invested in three of them:

enough to buy the latest-and-greatest-

and poverty in old age.”

Build-a-Bear Workshop, Barnes & Noble,

most-expensive-thing, plus plenty left

and Tween Brands, the company that

over. Rock has, well, $1. Ah, the power of

of teaching our students strong writing

owns Justice.”

compound interest!

skills, clear communication, reasoning,

analysis, and comprehension. But without

“until Tween Brands merged with The

focus on resisting those urges for instant

a foundation of self-control as it relates to

Dress Barn, resulting in a shareholder

gratification and focusing on the long

spending and savings, our children risk a

transaction cost that wiped out her

term of, ‘what’s meaningful to you, what

steep financial fall.

meager holdings. Haley and I placed a

“Educational materials need to

do you want?’ This is a cultural problem and hopefully the lesson of ‘Rock and

“This generation of children,” says

There is no denying the importance

BONDING OVER STOCKS

Charlotte has been more reluctant

Jeff Rovner did something similar

“We started with $100,” Rovner says.

“Everything went well,” says Rovner,

pathetic call to e*Trade asking them to reverse the charge lest Haley’s first stock

Brock’ is think for the longer term,” Bair

Pegasus dads Robert Riedl and Jeff

market experience end in a total loss.

shares.

Rovner brought economics home. As

The customer service representative took

Chief Investment Officer and Senior

pity on us and credited Haley’s account.

Whitman & Co, 2011), aimed at grades

VP of Finance for Consumer Portfolio

Thank you e*Trade!”

K – 4, focuses on investment risk and

Services, Inc., Riedl is in an ideal position

entrepreneurship. Isabel needs money for

to foster his daughters’ understanding of

little obsessed with the daily ups and

an expensive doll and decides to open a

macroeconomics and capital markets.

downs of their stocks. “Amanda keeps

car wash to pay for it. The start-up costs,

asking, ‘Have we made any money yet?’

however, are beyond her means. She asks

Schwab accounts for his daughters,

I tell her she can track her stocks with

five friends to invest $1 each, promising

fifth grader Amanda and second grader

their tickers, but not to worry about the

she’ll double their investment once her

Charlotte, and gave each of them $300

day-to-day movements because she’s

car wash turns a profit. At the end of the

to invest. “We did some research on the

earning the dividend,” Riedl says.

story, Isabel is able to pay her investors

web, starting with CNBC’s Jim Cramer’s

and afford the doll. Everybody wins.

10 Stocks for Kids and Barron’s top picks

interest in the topic increased when it

Terrie Moffitt, psychologist and

for 2012. We looked at 20 or so names,

was cast in terms of familiar products

professor at Duke University, stresses

comparing P/E multiples, dividend

and her personal investment. But more

the importance of teaching delayed

yields, 52 week high/lows, and tried to

important,” Rovner says, “it’s been a

gratification to young children. There is a

understand each business,” says Riedl.

lovely father/daughter experience to

direct correlation, studies find, between

Amanda bought two stocks, Pepsi and

share.”

Isabel’s Car Wash (Albert

For Christmas last year, Riedl opened

Both dads say their daughters are a

“It was fun to see how much Haley’s

a person’s economic success as an adult

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 29


SPANISH

The Spanish Experience at Pegasus Bringing the Language to Life. by Charline Nakamura-Lazenby How would you like to take a virtual tour of Spain, cook an

authentic Guatemalan meal from scratch, dance the salsa, or

requires that all sixth through eighth grade Spanish students

replicate a Pablo Picasso painting? The opportunity awaits

conceive, research, and complete a unique cultural endeavor each

you, at Pegasus. These are just a few examples of how Pegasus

semester. One of the benefits of acquiring a new language is to

students have interpreted the Culture, Participation and

learn about the people who speak it, making the language more

Research project recently implemented in the Middle School

meaningful. Students are given the freedom to choose a project

Spanish Department. The project was conceived to supplement

from a list of options or go out and follow their own interests.

our dynamic Spanish curriculum, by exposing students to the

The CPR involves independent work outside of the classroom,

language of real situations and the cultures of Spanish-speaking

allowing students to expand on subjects that fascinate them

countries. The process is characteristic of the Pegasus education,

personally and explore the resources in their own community.

at large: offer students a choice, encourage individual curiosities,

and reinforce independent learning. The results have been

kindergarten. Spanish teachers are blessed to work with bright

phenomenally creative, and students are expressing their hidden

students who embrace learning on so many levels. While

talents before our very eyes!

primary school Spanish teachers—Adrianna Perry and Teresa

30 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

The Culture, Participation, and Research (CPR) project

Pegasus introduces students to the Spanish language in


Vicuna—familiarize their students with the Spanish language

The CPR is a wonderful tool for this type of learning.

and culture, middle school Spanish teachers—Lisa Botts, Valerie

The freedom to choose a unique path and craft a unique

Gelso, and I—offer students opportunities to enhance their

presentational format has been visibly inspiring. Each day our

learning through independent study. Pegasus students thrive

students fill our classroom with the distinctive art, knowledge,

in independent-study environments and gravitate naturally

and culture of Spanish speaking countries. Their eagerness to

toward countries and cultures thousands of miles away. These

demonstrate what they have learned is exhilarating.

students are highly motivated to “think outside of the box”

The Cultural Participation and Research project has inspired

and go beyond academic requirements to engage their creative

our students to take their learning of the language and culture

appetite. At Pegasus, we consider every student the “exception”

to new levels. Each of these new experiences for middle school

— someone who possesses a unique gift and the will and

Spanish students has inspired creativity and love of the Spanish

enthusiasm to develop it. We try to cater to this exception,

language and culture. Students eagerly anticipate new project

removing restrictions and strict guidelines whenever possible

experiences for this semester.

so that students can explore and create without the pressure of conforming.

Why Learn a Second Language at an Early Age? by Teresa Vicuna A monolingual mindset has long been the norm in U. S. society, but the idea of exposing children to a second language has gained strong momentum during the past decade. The United States has the fifth highest Spanish speaking population in the world, after Mexico, Spain, Colombia and Argentina respectively, and the U.S. Census Bureau estimates an impressive 34 million U.S. citizens identify Spanish as their primary language. With such a hefty percentage of Americans utilizing a language other than English, the argument for second language education becomes even more compelling. The question, then, is: when to start? There has been substantial debate regarding the pros and cons of starting to learn a foreign language at a very early age. While several scholars may not agree with the “earlier-is-better” approach to second language education, the experts who weigh-in on the other side are far greater in number and validate the many benefits of early introduction. The advantages are formidable:

Charline Nakamura-Lazenby is a Pegasus middle school Spanish teacher. Contact: cnakamura@thepegasusschool.com

4

  Studying a foreign language helps students to   reinforce English grammar skills. By learning a new grammatical structure, they have a better understanding of their own language.

5

  The ability to express ideas in a foreign language

  will boost confidence.This confidence is displayed when students travel to a country where the target language is spoken and they engage in conversation with native speakers. As a mother of two children who have been exposed to three languages since birth, I believe it is possible to get a strong second language foundation before a student starts high school. It is crucial to introduce the target language earlier in childhood, when children possess an emotional disposition and intellectual readiness to learn foreign words. Children acquire foreign words through a subconscious process when they are younger. Older students, by comparison, learn by methodology, a process which requires them to understand grammar before being able to construct sentences.

  step out of their own culture and open the door to new ones. By gaining this cultural awareness, they get prepared to live and work in a global society.

As an educator at Pegasus, my approach to teaching is to expose young minds to a combination of the two teaching techniques. Students are partially immersed in a “Spanish-Only” section of the class, where they learn vocabulary by mimicking the way a “heritage” student would learn Spanish. They also learn Spanish grammar rules, which are introduced in English to ensure proper language usage. My goal for the students is to reinforce the exposure to the language they get in lower grades and give them the confidence and necessary tools to express their ideas clearly in Spanish.

  Studying a foreign language enhances cognitive   development by exercising critical thinking skills, creativity and intellectual growth in children.

Teresa Vicuna is a Pegasus lower school Spanish teacher. Contact: tvicuna@thepegasusschool.com

1

  Students who are exposed to a new language at   an early age are more likely to achieve native-like fluency and intonation than adults, since they are able to understand words and differentiate small sounds that would be missed by others.

2

  Students who are introduced to a second language

3

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 31


Those who Soar

by Julia Ostmann ’07

Hawkin Miller ’11 Courageous and energetic... …on a mission to succeed.

H

awken Miller ’11 loves scuba diving, classic rock, and traveling with his family. He takes stats for the Sage Hill football team and camps with his Boy Scout

troop from Pegasus. He likes “to watch football on Sunday, and practice piano, and play video games even though I don’t like to admit it.”

Hawken also has Duchenne muscular dystrophy, one of

the most common rare disorders, in which the muscles rapidly deteriorate. Nearly all those affected are male and usually don’t live beyond age 25.

It’s fall, the beginning of the school year. A brand new

group of Friendly Frogs fidgets on the carpet in Nancy Larimer’s kindergarten classroom. Suddenly, in a burst of energy and giggles, the children bounce off to the next activity. Except for one little boy, who with great difficulty rises and walks away.

It was 2002. Larimer told Hawken’s parents, Debra and

Paul, “You might want to have it checked out. Please have it checked out.”

The Millers first saw a pediatrician, then specialists. On

the day doctors initially suggested the possibility of Duchenne, the backseat with his big blue eyes and his blond hair — he had blond hair then — and his baseball cap. And I remember thinking, I can’t imagine him not always being here.”

After the diagnosis, the Millers, who both have backgrounds

in business and marketing, grew frustrated with the lack of effectiveness in existing organizations related to Duchenne. So they founded their own. The result was Cure Duchenne, a nonprofit dedicated to finding a cure within ten years.

To raise public awareness and money, Cure Duchenne has

worked with the Greenbay Packers’ Clay Matthews, Modern

32 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

The greatest challenge would be I wish I could be like everybody else and normal...but, I don’t really worry about that.

Photos courtesy of Debra and Paul Miller, Cure Duchenne

“I met Paul for dinner,” Debra said. “Hawken was sitting in


Family actor Sofia Vergara, and Pegasus parent and former

famed hockey player Scott Niedermayer. Each year, teams across

mean that he’s included,” Debra said.

the U.S. scale mountains for Pick Your Peak: Climb to Cure Duchenne.

This June, Paul will lead a team to Mt. Kilimanjaro.

activities and still protect his health, Paul accompanied his son

on many field trips, including overnight ones. For Yosemite,

“We’ve contributed funds to seven different research

“He’s got good friends, and he loves them, but it doesn’t To ensure that Hawken could participate in bonding

projects in clinical trials,” Debra says. “Right now it’s a matter of

Paul had a custom backpack made to carry Hawken on his back

funding the research that could save their lives.”

during hikes.

Mention the name Hawken Miller to anyone who’s met

One day the group hiked up more than 660 stone stairs

him, and you’ll hear about his smile. You’ll also hear about

to Vernal Falls. Nancy Wilder remembers Hawken telling his

his inherent curiosity, thorough scholarship, and almost

dad, “You don’t have to do it, you don’t have to finish,” and Paul

superhuman work ethic.

saying, “Hawken, I’m

“He has the

gonna make it to the

personality...of elite

top. You can either be

athletes,” said English

quiet or encourage me.”

teacher Nancy Wilder.

The quiet, unfailing

“Even if there’s a

determination of his

success, Hawken

parents is a constant

takes that success, he’s

in Hawken’s life. They

grateful for it, but he’s

practice what Debra

moved on to the next

calls “action as therapy,”

challenge.”

so that “at the end of our

life we know we’ve done

Pegasus, Debra says,

“embraced him in a very

everything we can to

big way.”

help our son and these

boys.”

First there was a

There are permanent challenges. “The stuff I didn’t get to do

little red stool for Hawken to sit on during Friendly Frog carpet time. Later there were lunchtime board games, an attempt to

with him,” says Paul. “Father-son stuff...coaching a Little League

keep him from running on the playground. Eventually, there was

team, that kind of stuff.”

a motor scooter to get around campus.

coming up against stuff,” said Debra, “and somehow he picks

Pegasus P.E. teacher, Coach Charles Tyler, remembers

But Hawken offers countless inspirations. “He’s constantly

talking with Paul about Hawken, how to “get him active

himself up and smiles and keeps going in a different direction.”

without being active” and further damaging muscle tissue. The

“He’s my hero,” comments Paul.

task seemed at times impossible, but Hawken improved his

Hawken is sitting on his living room sofa. He gently pets

throwing, catching, and sit-and-reach.

Gus, the small scruffy dog he holds in his arms. Cody, a black

lab, rests at his feet. “The greatest challenge would be I wish I

Other Pegasus students, Tyler said, “challenged themselves

to work with him” so that “he felt good, and they felt good, and

could be like everybody else and normal.” But, he shares, “I don’t

he felt like he was a part of what was going on.”

really worry about that.”

People are important to Hawken. He loved socializing at

Pegasus lunchtime and hanging out during the eighth grade Yosemite trip. When his class last year voted to support Cure Duchenne with its Pegasus Jog-a-thon proceeds, “I was really grateful of having them as friends,” he said.

These are treasured moments of connection — one common

Julia Ostmann is a freshman at Harvard College and is planning to major in English, Psychology, or History of Science. She serves as a campus peer counselor and is a mental health research associate at Cambridge Hospital. She also volunteers with the literacy program of a local HeadStart preschool. She hopes to pursue a career in science journalism or child psychiatry. Contact: juliaostmann@college.harvard.edu To learn more about the work of CureDuchenne, please visit: www.cureduchenne.org

component of Duchenne is a degree of social isolation.

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 33


Alumni Connections by Angel Waters

Lisa Wiley ’96 and Ian McCall married in June 2011 at the Fullerton Arboretum

Brandon Carr ’99 attended the 2012 Pegasus Spring Benefit, Hear the 20’s Roar, with his mother, Michelle Carr

1996

He won the 50-lap main event, his fifth

Lisa Wiley has been an associate attorney

consecutive victory in the NASCAR

at the Law Offices of Marjorie G. Fuller

sanctioned Automobile Club of Southern

since April 2008. She is the appellate

California Late Model series driving his

section chair of the Orange County Bar

Applied Computer Solutions No. 55 High

Association and volunteers as a judge for

Point Racing Chevy Monte Carlo.

the Constitutional Rights Foundation

high school mock trial and the California

2011 series races] in my wildest dreams,” reflects

committing many years to medical school.

State University, Long Beach moot court

Davis.

Nick Frazier graduated in 2011 from the

competitions. In her spare time, she

Davis’ victory tied an Irwindale

University of California, Los Angeles

performs with a tap dance company called

record for most victories (5) to start the

with a bachelor of science degree in

Tap Overload.

season in the series.

biology. He also graduated with honors

from both University of California,

1999

“I did not think I could [win five consecutive

Davis is engaged to be married to

Haley and Miranda Young ’03 interned at Pegasus during their 2011 winter break. The twins reached out to their fellow 2003 classmates for updates and dug up some inspiring news.

Europe before heading back home. He has plans on visiting Korea, the Philippines, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Singapore, and has visited Thailand on multiple occasions. He is taking this year and the next to simply travel and work before

fiancé Erica at the family’s Napa vineyard.

Los Angeles’ Honors College and

this fall. He was sworn in by Superior

2002

the biology department. A year ago,

Court Judge Honorable Marla J. Miller,

Sean Davis is a senior at San Diego State.

with whom he worked as a Judicial

He is a kinesiology major and tri-athlete.

French Polynesia, studying coral reef

Externship in San Francisco.

2003

which focused on overfishing and the

Laura Wiley, former Pegasus student,

Josh Kim is an English teacher at a cram

subsequent ecosystem changes which

received her master’s degree in writing

school in Taiwan. Kim graduated from

are occurring. He submitted a paper to

and publishing from Emerson University.

the University of Michigan in 2011 with a

the journal “Coral Reefs” and which is

She is now working in Hermosa Beach

bachelor of arts in sociology and a minor

currently being revised. Since July he has

and advancing her music career.

in biochemistry. He plans on attending

been applying to medical schools and is

medical school and is currently going

deciding on which school to attend in the

through the application process. Kim

fall. He also volunteers ten hours a week

enjoys teaching in Taiwan, though the

at The Venice Family Clinic, Venice Beach,

main reason he’s there is so he can travel

which is one of the largest free clinics

Asia and hopefully make his way to

in the country where he takes patient

Brandon Carr passed the state bar exam

2000 Brandon Davis won his fifth consecutive NASCAR Southern California race in July 2011 at Toyota Speedway, Irwindale.

34 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

Frazier spent three months in Moorea, ecology and conducting field research


histories, vital signs, conduct various

now works as a freelance director of

medical procedures and therapies, as well

photography and considers himself

as conducts blood and urine analyses.

fortunate to be able to make movies for a

Harry Koulos graduated cum laude

living.

and with distinction in history from

Chrissy Schwartz spent “nine wonderful

Yale, where he played baseball. He

years at Pegasus” then attended Newport

was awarded the Francis Brown prize,

Harbor High School. She graduated from

awarded to “one member of the Yale

the University of Southern California

Class of 2011 who most approaches

in 2011 with a major in communication

standards of intellectual ability, strong

and minor in business entrepreneurship.

character, capacity for leadership, and

Schwartz completed internships at

service,” for his dedication to both

several companies including a major

athletics and school. Koulos also studied

public relations firm, a movie marketing

abroad at Oxford and in Greece, where

company and Sony Pictures Television.

he researched and reconnected with

She plans to travel abroad to Europe this

relatives.

spring and hopes to follow with a job

in either entertainment or sales. For her

urban China. This project was originally

Georgetown Law School where he interns

downtime, she enjoys golfing, watching

her thesis film for her media studies

as a law clerk at the Department of

sports and playing with her pets.

major. She hopes to write/complete her

Koulos is a first year student at

Justice’s Constitutional and Specialized Torts Division. He is pursuing positions with the Navy Judge Advocate General Corps (military lawyers) and federal judges for this summer.

Alle Hsu began working on a few film projects since graduating from Scripps College in 2011. Hsu began her postcollege journey as an intern in post-

Jessica Paek ’06 accompanied her mother, Suzan, to the 2012 Spring Benefit, Hear the 20’s Roar

first feature-length screenplay based on her research and exploration of Shanghai in the 1920s/1930s during the time of the Battle of Shanghai.

production on a documentary film for the

Jacob Kirkorowicz attended New York

Omo Child Foundation. The Omo Child

University upon graduating from Sage

Foundation’s mission has been to stop

Hill School. During his time at NYU

Mingi and provide a home for 35 displaced

he became interested in global health,

children by the Omo River region of

particularly the spread of HIV/AIDS in

Eric Shieh received his bachelor of arts

Southwest Ethiopia. The organization

socially marginalized urban populations.

degree from Harvard University during

has been able to save childrens’ lives that

His passion for global health inspired him

the spring 2011 and is now working

would have ended in death as victims

to participate in, and ultimately to lead,

toward his master’s degree at Harvard

of ritual infanticide. Mingi is described

a series of community health projects in

Medical School.

by the tribal elders as children who are

Honduras for which he received NYU’s

considered cursed or imperfect.

2010 President’s Service Award.

His interests include working on

the biography of early 20th century author and diplomat George Horton and continuing to Greek folk dance.

Michael Solomon graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in finance and economics. He interned and then worked at an investment bank briefly out of college before deciding to shift careers. While in college, Solomon was a part-time professional photographer which developed into working in film. He

Hsu recently began production on

Kirkorowicz became involved in

a documentary about how music affects

health research and worked as a research

children with special needs. She is

intern at NYU’s Center for Health,

working with a non-profit organization

Identity, Behavior, and Prevention

in Northern California that is dedicated

Research specializing in the study of HIV

to serving the special needs children

risk behaviors. After graduating from

and the community through music and

NYU in 2011 with high honors, he went on

art. Hsu also continues to work on her

to pursue a Master’s of Science in Global

documentary on the status of women in

Health at Duke University. PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 35


Lauren Balfour ’10 and David Aghaian ’05 welcomed guests to the Roaring 20’s with jazz numbers at our Spring Benefit 2012. Also, a warm thank you to Kaitlyn Bannister ’09 for volunteering at this year’s Benefit.

Kirkorowicz currently works as a research assistant at the Duke Center for Health Policy and Inequalities Research, exploring depression in HIV positive individuals. This summer he will travel to Sri Lanka to conduct his master’s thesis project on injury, trauma, and emergency

As our alumni become established, we support their businesses and talents. Vartan Tchekmedyian ’01 has a production company that specializes in large events including concerts and celebrations. Over the past two years, Tchekmedyian has been the magic behind all of our Spring Benefit audio/visual needs.

Our 2010 alumni, Camden Blower, Wyatt Robertson, Garrett Byers, Cole Friedman, Audrey Rimland and Taylor Goeser at their Newport Harbor High School winter formal

fresh culinary adventures with her

Alex Neff is a senior mechanical

Australian fiancé.

engineering major at Brown University.

Liz Zadro graduated from University of California, Los Angeles with a bachelor’s in anthropology. Liz completed her fourth year on the women’s soccer team starting

Upon graduation, he will work at a startup company designing and building an original Stirling engine to be used for renewable energy applications.

at center mid. They won two PAC-10

Anika Sutty graduated from Bentley

titles and went to the final four three

University in Waltham, MA in 2011

times. Last fall, Zadro studied abroad in

with a bachelor of science in marketing.

Christine Shepard graduated from the

Rome, and upon her return in December,

Currently, she is studying for her MBA

University of Miami in 2010 with a dual-

started work at Zadro Products as a sales

with a concentration in Global Business

degree in electronic media and ecosystems

manager. Zadro has substituted soccer

and Markets and will graduate this

science and policy. Currently, she is

workouts with yoga and in a few years

May. This summer she will start as an

serving as the Multimedia Specialist

will be going back to school to get her

allocation analyst in the purchasing

for the RJ Dunlap Marine Conservation

master’s in business.

department at the TJX Corporation in

care systems. He hopes to pursue a career in medicine or global health research.

Program at the University of Miami, where she strives to translate cuttingedge scientific research into creative multimedia packages for educational outreach purposes.

With a strong focus on shark research

and conservation, Shepard has been featured in various mass media outlets this year including O Magazine and the Discovery Channel. She hopes to continue her marine conservation work in the media, as well as open her own nature photography gallery.

Shepard resides in Miami, FL, where

you can likely find her embarking upon 36 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

Zach Von Berg continued baseball through high school and into college; however, he has now hung up his spikes following multiple surgeries. He will graduate with an degree in Exercise Science from the University of Puget Sound in May. Aside from school and baseball, Von Berg enjoys fishing,

Framingham, MA. This past winter Sutty interned for an NGO in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, that specializes in helping Afro-Brazilian entrepreneurs learn basic management, marketing, and finance skills to help expand their business. In the fall she plans on running the Chicago Marathon with her family.

hunting, camping, four-wheeling, skiing

Caitlin Gillenwater graduated from

and snowboarding. He hopes to travel

Edison High School and travelled to Costa

Europe before continuing his education to

Rica for six months to teach English.

graduate school in a few years.

In 2009 she moved to New Hampshire

Von Berg wishes for his class: “I hope

everyone is on their right path and enjoying life.”

(where she currently lives) and works as an EMT. Caitlin also helps as a volunteer for the fire department.


Axel Eaton, a junior at Newport Harbor High, volunteered in a project with WAVES for Development in Lobitos, Peru for three weeks in July 2011. Eaton raised $2,700 before his trip to help set up a surf shop in Lobitos. Profits raised from the shop from tourist visits would help increase income for the locals and motivate the locals to establish their own Our fall 2011 issue of Pegasus Magazine featured Pegasus Troop 911 when they were Tiger Cubs. Shown are a few of the dedicated troop members: (L-R) Zachary Rabosky ’04, Bryant Schulman ’04, Joey Puishys ’04, Brendan Davis ’04, RJ Davis ’02

Axel Eaton ’09 (center) with boys from Lobitos, Peru

shops in order to become self-sufficient.

Eaton named the shop after the most

intense surf spot in the area, El Hueco. Not only does the shop employ four local

2004

roundtable discussions for magazine

people who work four days a week, it also

Everett Alexander Heiney, has been

editors. Haley interned for two well-

has generated so much profit that it will

selected by the J. William Fulbright

known fashion designers — New York

cover the cost of a part time college degree

Foreign Scholarship Board to receive a

based contemporary label, Miha, and

for their Peruvian financial manager.

Fulbright Teaching Assistantship for 2012-

Alexander Wang, and now works and

The profit also provides private English

2013 to the republic of Georgia. He is one

interns at NYLON magazine in the art

classes for three of the locals in Lobitos.

of only 1600 college seniors selected for a

department. Also the art director for ISO

US Student Fulbright award annually.

magazine, her photographs have appeared

Eaton acknowledges as “one of the

in Foam Magazine and Crossroads Trading

most inspiring people I know” came to

at Claremont McKenna College in

calendar. At New York University,

WAVES two years ago with the interest

Claremont, CA, and served as Editor-in-

Haley was chosen to participate in the

of borrowing a surfboard and can now be

Chief of the campus literary magazine,

University Leadership Honors Course.

seen shredding his home break in style.

the Port Side, as a Harrison Fellow at

The program provides specialized classes

Henry graduated from high school and

the Salvatori Center. He is the S3 in

to a select group of students hand-picked

became a full time photographer, selling

charge of operations and training for the

by the deans of individual schools.

his photographs to tourists.

Army ROTC Golden Lions Battalion.

The courses are designed to encourage

He also plans to initiate a program to

leadership.

teach Georgians land navigation skills.

Following his Fulbright year, Heiney will

http://cargocollective.com/haleystark

begin training in Field Artillery to fulfill

2009

her back to campus, she answered with

Jack Clement ’09 and Chris Kolar ’08

a smile, “seeing all my past teachers brings

achieved Eagle rank from Troop 911.

me back to my roots, core values and is a place

Heiney is a government major

his commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the US Army.

2006 Haley Stark, a media communications major at New York University, is pursuing her dreams and talents in the fashion and media industry. Haley’s interest in the magazine world started while working with Teen Vogue in high school. Still involved with Teen Vogue, Haley continues to be on-call for events or

Her portfolio can be viewed at

Maggie Danner, a junior at Sage Hill School, was featured in the Daily Pilot on October 2011 and recognized as the Daily Pilot Athlete of the Week for her top volleyball skills. Danner is also involved in the student ambassadors program and carries a 3.6 grade-point average.

One of the local boys, Henry, who

Jenna Peterson, a junior at Huntington Beach High, volunteered for Athletic Director, Chrissy Bridges, on a day off from school. When asked what brings

I always feel safe and loved.” The skills she learned at Pegasus has advanced her study and organizational skills which she uses in her AP classes. “Pegasus understands what students need to succeed in high school.” Peterson runs track and cross country and is a member of the Save Darfur Club. Angel Waters is the Pegasus Associate Director of Advancement, Programs and Events. She oversees the Spring Benefit, Alumni Association and Grandparent’s Association. PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 37


ALUMNI

Pegasus Then and Now by Haley and Miranda Young ’03

W

e attended Pegasus from

campus are nice new additions!)

and coaches wholeheartedly dedicated

kindergarten through

Walking around the school, fantastic

to the development and personal

eighth grade. It’s hard

memories came flooding back:

enrichment of each individual student.

to believe that nine years have since

kindergarten star of the week; first

Clearly the faculty and staff continue

passed. Although we have now spent

grade pioneer day; second grade

to have a passion for academic

just as much time out of Pegasus as

biographies; third grade chit chats;

excellence and student well-being,

we did in it, we still feel as connected

fourth grade missions; fifth grade

an outlook that is as deeply rooted as

to the school as we did then. As a

state presentations; and, middle

the vision with which the school was

result, when encouraged to seek an

school technology projects, science

founded.

internship during our winter break

experiments, vocabulary tests,

from business school at Duke, we felt

and, naturally, lockers, dances, and

Pegasus is truly an amazing place

compelled to come back to Pegasus.

sports. The fact that we can so clearly

to learn and grow up. We emerged

Our love for the school, combined

remember everything is a testament to

with an unparalleled education,

with the learning opportunities

the joy that the assignments brought

great values, and lasting friendships.

that could be gained from such a

to us and the impact they had in

Pegasus will always have a special

successful institution, made for a great

shaping our academic careers and love

place in our hearts, and we look

collaboration, and we were thrilled

of learning.

forward to continuing our involvement

to gain experience working with

with the school long into the future.

admissions, advancement, and alumni

campus, we were warmly greeted

relations.

with hugs from teachers who vividly

remember us from as long as eighteen

Upon our return to Pegasus, we

Every corner we turned around

were astounded — not by how much

years ago. This teacher-student bond

has changed, but by how much has

is a relationship we cherish above all

stayed the same. We saw lessons

and represents perhaps our strongest

designed to challenge young minds,

memory of the school. The teachers

students eagerly learning, and walls

are truly a paradigm of Pegasus’

still plastered with creative projects.

unique and cherished culture; in no

(Of course, the flat screen tvs and

other school can you find an entire

laptops sprinkled throughout the

campus full of instructors, mentors,

38 THE PEGASUS SCHOOL

Our experience reconfirmed that

Haley and Miranda Young ’03 Corona del Mar High School University of California, Irvine Hayley: B.S. Chemistry, minors in Biology and Education; Honors in Chemistry, Phi Lambda Upsilon

Miranda: B.A. Economics, minor in Education; Latin Honors, Phi Beta Kappa

Duke University- The Fuqua School of Business Master in Management Studies: Foundations of Business


Supporting our Mission

We are thrilled to announce the Pegasus community raised close to $600,000 through the Spring Benefit for our school and financial aid program. We take care of our own, we take care of others and we have a great time making it happen. That is how Pegasus gets it done! Many thanks to co-chairs, Wendy Matthews and Shea Watson, their committee, and donors for creating a memorable Roaring 20’s evening for all.

PEGASUS MAGAZINE SPRING 2012 39


NONPROFIT ORG. U.S. POSTAGE PAID HUNT. BEACH, CA PERMIT NO. 421

19692 Lexington Lane Huntington Beach, CA 92646 www.thepegasusschool.org

FSC logo

Open House

May 24

Memorial Day

May 28

Last Day of School

June 7

Pegasus Summer Programs Begin

June 25


Pegasus Magazine - Spring 2012