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Wellington magazine

FALL/WINTER 2012 | Inside: Cooking with Gab • Connecting to the Past • Creative Play with Little Jags

Dear Wellington Community: Family is always on my mind. Even more so at this time of the year when the holidays bring us together to reflect on thankfulness, caring, and understanding. In many ways, our Wellington family is not entirely different from your own. We have parents, or founders, who breathed life into this amazing school more than 30 years ago so that our students could excel at being themselves instead of what a test score said they should be. In this issue, you will meet junior Gabrielle “Gab” Smith. She is an inspiring example of discovering one’s true passion and using quite a bit of elbow grease to make her dreams come true. Like most families, our school embraces time-honored traditions. Founders Day, Senior Adoption, Thanksgiving Assembly, and the Holiday Sing are always very special occasions that bring us together in our love and appreciation for something bigger than any one person. It’s a sentiment that permeates the Middle School each and every day. In addition to their yearlong dedication to service and philanthropy, students have worked quite a bit this fall on a variety of projects in which they examined their own identities through the prism of their ancestors. It is only through a greater understanding of the past, that we can strive for a better tomorrow. Preparing for the future requires challenging our students and faculty to think outside the box, much like Little Jags teacher Pete Kaser recently did by removing all the toys from his classroom and replacing them with cardboard. From pirate ships to igloos, Wellington’s youngest students taught us all a lesson in creative play that deeply resonated with the entire nation. From our Wellington family to yours, may the New Year bring us continued joyfulness for all that is yet to come. Warm regards,

Robert D. Brisk Head of School


All Things Wellington Wednesday January

23 6:30 to 8 p.m.

6th annual curriculum night to celebrate Wellington World premiere videos Big ideas from students and faculty! Childcare provided

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Gabrielle Smith’s Recipe for Success Upper Schooler Gab Smith turns her love of cooking into life’s work.

All School

Upper School Mocked the Vote Middle School Presidential Election Convention Lower School’s Swing Grade


Lower School


Middle School

Lower School Celebrates Ohio and Native Americans Cross-grade level sharing paves the way for new curriculum.

Language Arts at the Heart of the Middle School Student writers share their work.


Upper School





Monster Anatomy Integrated curriculum brings “Frankenstein” to life.

Season Highlights Golf, Soccer, and Tennis

Gareth Burghes: Beyond the Infinite Wellington alumnus teaches marine biology to a variety of audiences.

The Wellington Magazine is published by The Wellington School for all members of its community. Please send any comments to Yvonne Johnson at Editor: Yvonne Johnson P ’25 ’27 Contributors: Taff Anderson ’14, Adenola Atekoja ‘20, Berc Backhurst, Peggy Berger, Leah Buckingham ’13, Carly Butler ‘20, Rob Brisk P ‘13 ‘15, Elizabeth Clapacs, Laura Cooke ’90 P ’21 ’21 ’24 ’27, Erin Cornett ‘96, Marianne Crowley, Lizzie Dvorkin ’14, Laura Gamboa ’13, Chris Jones ’14, Katie Matney P ‘26, Muriel Meray, Erin Noviski, Laurie Parsons, Ryan Parsons, Mary Potter, Aquila Simmons ‘19, Stephanie Stover, Jyotsna Sreenivasan, Jenna Tugaoen ’13, Jill Webb, Jayne Young, Elizabeth Zimmerman ‘13 Copyeditors: Laura Cooke ‘90 P ‘21 ‘21 ‘24 ‘27, Melanie Eggleton, Caroline Haskett P ‘19 ‘20 ‘22, Erin Noviski, Sally Saeger Stratton, Jeff Terwin, and Jill Webb Photo Credits: Jonathan Barteldt, Laura Cooke ‘90 P ‘21 ‘21 ‘24 ‘27, Laura Trubilowicz P ‘27, Berc Backhurst, Matt Butler P ‘12 ‘16 ‘20, Leah Buckingham ‘13, Lizzie Dvorkin ‘14, Elizabeth Zimmerman ‘13, Chris Jones ‘14, Laura Gamboa ‘13, Dale Perdue P ‘15, Peggy Berger, Tracey Yakubov P ‘15 ‘17 ‘21, Carol Lynne O’Neil P ‘13 ‘17 Layout: Bluewave Creative



Cover: MacKenzie Beam ’19 and Catherine Zallanta ‘19

The Wellington School Board of Trustees 2012-13 Mr. Larry Abbott P ‘92 ’00 ‘03 Mr. M. Douglas Anderson P ‘08 ’11 ’15 ‘20 Mr. Douglas Aschenbach Mrs. Darla Kay Ball P ‘16 ‘20 Mr. Lyle Brown ‘89 Mr. James Croft, Treasurer P ’17 ’20 ‘22 Ms. Michelle Croft P ‘17 ’20 ‘20 Ms. Dionne Custer Ms. Lisa Edwards P ’11 ’14 ’18 ‘25 Mr. Scott Humphrys P ’20 ‘22 Ms. Sally A. Hughes P ‘16 Dr. Janette Knowles P ’12 ‘17 Ms. Nancy Kramer, Chair P ’07 ’09 ‘11 Mr. Ted K. Manley, Secretary P ‘21 ‘24 Mr. Paul Morse P ‘09 ’11 ’11 ‘14 Mr. Dale K. Perdue P ‘15 Mr. Robert Price, Vice Chair P ‘08 ’12 ‘16 Ms. Dwan V. Robinson P ’10 ‘13 Mr. Bryan Stewart ‘95 Mr. Jeffrey D. Swaddling ‘89 P ‘16 Mr. Robert J. Tannous P ‘14 ‘16 Dr. Andrew Thomas P ’14 ’16 ‘26 Dr. Caroline Whitacre P ‘03 Professor Christian Zacher P ‘12

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Celebrations Gabrielle Smith’s Recipe for Success Sleep is not on the priority list for Gab Smith ‘14. There’s simply too much to be done.

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rom coordinating Robotics Team events to operating her own small bakery business, as well as working at a popular Columbus restaurant while also participating in athletics, Gab has too much on her plate to ever slow down long enough for a rest. Upper School Science teacher and coach Aaron Frim P ‘19 has always been impressed with her massive energy reserve. “Gab could have been up all night baking cupcakes for a fundraiser. It did not seem to matter. She came to class each and every day with a positive attitude and a smile on her face. I could count on her to be a regular participant in class discussions. The same effort, an ‘all-out hustle,’ that I see from her on the athletic field was present in the classroom. I cannot tell you the number of times she has made me smile.”

This good-natured Wellington lifer grew up in a household where cooking and coming together for family meals had great significance. Gab attributes her love for all things food-related to watching her own mom in the kitchen. Mother and daughter also bonded over watching shows on the Food Network. Gab recalls fondly that Emeril Lagasse was a favorite. Despite having achieved admirable success with her first entrepreneurial endeavor, Four Leaf Bakery, Gab decided in the 8th grade that she would pursue the culinary arts as a profession instead. “Baking is a hobby,” she explained. “Cooking is my passion.” Gab is the rare individual who can make a statement like that and actually back it up with

not just raw talent but back-breaking hard work, too. She considers her time at Wellington to be absolutely fundamental in building her character and confidence to such a level that she could ask, without hesitation, the head chef at Cameron’s American Bistro during a chance encounter if she could ever have the opportunity to work in his kitchen.

Gab has already decided to apply to the Culinary Institute of America this summer and appreciates everything she learned in Advanced Composition to aid her during the process.

That bit of luck mixed with her extraordinary work ethic and natural talent has secured Gab’s spot as the youngest associate currently working at a Cameron Mitchell restaurant.

Gab’s ability to push herself in new directions that may not always come naturally is admirable to all who know her. Upper School English teacher Catherine Dison P ‘21 recalled a telling example of Gab’s character while working on a final project in 9th grade to create a magazine.

“Right after I was hired, the dishwasher left and I ended up washing dishes for a while,” Gab said. “I used that time as a valuable learning experience in getting to know the kitchen and its staff.” Gab’s superiors took notice of her right away and moved her up the ranks to line cook not long after. Amazingly, even after working 6-9 hour shifts on the weekends while being a full-time student, Gab still finds time to serve as the Head Coordinator for the Robotics Team. She first became involved her freshman year when her older sister Alison Smith ‘11 co-founded the team. A dedicated athlete, Gab never misses a practice or game with her varsity soccer and softball teams even if she sometimes has to change shifts at the restaurant to make it work. Gab credits Wellington for helping her to learn to juggle multiple responsibilities and get organized. School librarian and advisor Patty Dunn has been impressed by Gab’s ability to calmly maintain balance in her life. “Gab is focused in achieving her goals, both short-term and long-term,” Ms. Dunn said of her advisee. “She actively pursues her passion and is incorporating that passion into her future plans while still maintaining her class work, sports, and a job.”

“It really helped prepare me for my college essay,” she said. “It was nice to see my writing progress through the trimester.”

“Students selected a topic of interest to them and proceeded to put together a collection of specific types of articles all centered around their chosen topic,” Mrs. Dison explained. “Gab, of course, wanted to write about food, and she decided to name her magazine Eating Columbus. Although writing was not Gab’s easiest subject as a freshman, she probably wrote twice as many drafts of each article as any of her classmates because she was so passionate about her subject and really wanted her magazine to be the best it could be. She took almost all of the pictures in the magazine herself and involved her family in the process. “It was such a joy to see a student so engaged in the authentic work of a writer. Gab was driven and focused throughout the entire process of putting together her magazine, and her hard work resulted in her earning the award for the best magazine in the class.” With her remarkable tenacity, there’s little question that Gab will achieve anything she sets her mind to. But before she can move forward with her plans to be a sous chef by 25, an executive chef by 30, and have her own restaurant by 35, Gab still has to graduate. She’s excited about her upcoming year at Wellington. It will provide her with even more opportunities to explore and grow in new directions. “I love art,” she said. “I really liked ceramics last year. I’m looking forward to Advanced Art. I always like to pursue other areas of interest and have them center around cooking.” Gab’s enthusiasm for stretching herself in new areas while still developing her greatest talents is exactly what our school wants to impart in every student. Mr. Frim agrees whole-heartedly. “Gab Smith is Wellington in my mind.”

Gab Smith ‘14 with Clifford Cannon ’01 in the kitchen of Cameron’s American Bistro. fall/WINTER 2012 • 4


Brenda Bell Retires


t was a sense of adventure and eagerness to be involved in something truly great that first brought Assistant to the Head Brenda Bell to Wellington shortly before it opened its doors in 1982.

At the time, Mrs. Bell was teaching at Winterset in Columbus when she caught an article by chance in the Upper Arlington News about an independent school starting up in the area. “What an interesting thing to be a part of a brand new school,” she thought. “I bet that’ll be a place where the parents will really care about the school.” Hired as a 2nd grade teacher, Mrs. Bell holds the distinctive honor of attending the first faculty meeting in December 1981. She later went on to be the Head of Lower School for 18 years. Over the years, Mrs. Bell has accumulated countless memories of her time at Wellington. “The school has always been a joyful, caring, purposeful place for kids to learn and grow.” She recalled the first Grandparents Day, in which lunch for both grandparents and students was served, and thought it was a treasure for everyone involved. She also remembered an early student art show many years ago in which a family visited with their babies still in strollers. The parents told Mrs. Bell that they were so impressed with the school that they would one day send their children here. They kept their word. Not only did all of their children attend, but they also all graduated from Wellington.

Award-Winning Wellington Faculty


ellington faculty members continue to distinguish themselves in the larger community with honors bestowed on a national stage.

In August, Upper School mathematics teacher Ms. Michelle Neely learned that her talk on alternative assessments had been accepted for presentation at the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics annual convention in Denver. Ms. Neely has a passion for taking the tears and frustration out of math and incorporates 21st century tools, such as social media and art, in the classroom to make math more accessible to students. After spending several years teaching 7th grade mathematics in Colorado, Ms. Neely was excited to join the Upper School faculty this year because of its emphasis on critical and abstract thinking. She looks forward to continuing to teach in an environment in which a student’s “only limitation is their own imagination.” The University of Chicago recently awarded Middle and Upper School Counselor Craig Jones with an Outstanding Educator of the Year Award for his contribution to the academic and personal development of young people. The son of a senior youth advocate, Jones credits watching his father help troubled kids as a major catalyst in finding his own calling as a mentor. When Jones later worked with his first youth group in Massachusetts, he discovered that “helping students sort through issues and develop positive personal decision-making” could be a fulfilling, lifelong career. Nominated by Sam Zacher ’12, currently a freshman at the University of Chicago, Jones is tremendously honored by the recognition but finds the simple thank you’s from kids to be the most rewarding part of his job. “Wow,” Jones thinks whenever he hears back from an appreciative former student. “My interaction with them really was significant.”

Michelle Neely

With her many years of service to the Blue and White, Mrs. Bell is now looking forward to all of the perks of retirement. “I’m a learner, so I cannot wait for the opportunity to try new things like learning Spanish and painting.” Despite an exciting move to an entirely different region of the country, Mrs. Bell will not likely forget Wellington. “As a teacher, I had always wondered what became of my former students. With the tight knit community at Wellington, I’ve been fortunate to keep in touch with many of them. That closes the circle for me.”

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pictured: 1. Aditya Induri ‘23 2. Maxwell Johnson ‘25 3. Zoe Mak ‘16 4. Jameela Askira ‘22 and Lexi Robbins ‘22 5. Jessie Seitz ‘22 and Shelly Bowling P ‘19 6. Zachary Sagone ’23 and Jill Hicks 7. (L-r)Max Winter ‘23, Alex Lott ‘22, Jake Browning ‘22, and Josef Cios ‘22

Back to School Sundae Wellington kicked off the new school year on Sunday, August 19 with Back to School Sundae. Students were able to get a sneak peek at their new classrooms and lockers before classes began the following week. The annual tradition provides everyone the chance to catch up with old friends and make new ones after a long summer away from school. Head of School Robert Brisk warmly welcomed new families to the special event before introducing each of the division heads to the community.


After everyone had a chance to roam and explore the school, families returned to the Thomas Family Dining Room for a sweet treat as they began making memories together of the upcoming year.


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ellington celebrated its birthday in September with every student, from Little Jag to Upper School future grads, being treated to a “W” cupcake in honor of the school’s founding more than 30 years ago.

The festivities continued later in the day during an all-school pep rally in the Gard Gym where Duke was on deck to slap paws with everyone who crossed his path. The assembly also marked the premier of a film trailer for a documentary about Wellington’s

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pictured: 1. ayla kocak ‘24 2. Homecoming King Vishal Sharoff ’13 and Queen Jenna Tugaoen ‘13 3. Rob Brisk P ’13 ‘15 gets dunked. 4. Jordan Holland ‘17, Michael Doran ‘16, Julia Doran ‘14, J.T. Seitz ‘17, Spencer Wilkins ‘24, Alexander Wilkins ’22, David Swaddling ’16, Jessie Seitz ‘22, Natalie Morse ‘14, Christine Cooke ‘21, Trevor Seitz ‘17, Emma Cooke ‘24, Rob Brisk P ’13 ’15, Caroline Cooke ‘21 5. Ben Brisk ’15 gets painted by Erin O’Neil ’13. 6. Henry Becker ‘27 7. Kaylee Pinson ‘19, Jaedyn Gaines ‘19, Katherine Anderson ‘19 8 Darius McElrath ’19 9. Chris Robbins P ’17 ‘22 and Sara Brdar p’02 ‘03 with Duke 10. Jackson Stoner ’22 and Tyler Stoner ‘26




irthday, Wellington! founders. The video, when completed in 2013, will be viewed first by the founders and then shared with our community.


The celebration went well into the evening as students and parents were completely immersed in classic Founders Day fun activities like face painting and bouncy castles. Cotton candy and snow cones were readily available as students could also wind up their best pitching arms to dunk Head of School Rob Brisk and other favorite faculty and staff members in the water tank outside of the Thomas Family Dining Room. The time honored tradition of taking pride in our wonderful school, and how far it has come, continues to endure in the hearts and minds of all Jags.


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PICTURED, Left to right, back: Sean Corey, Kami Darling, Laura Trubilowicz P ‘27, Michelle Neely, Cristen Healy, Ashley Wilkins P ’22 ‘24 ‘26, Margaret Guy. Left to right, front: Ryann Gilton, Jyotsna Sreenivasan, Muriel Meray, Jill Hicks, Lissa Wade P ‘26, LeAnne Mohler, Jennifer Landon. Not pictured: Ashleigh (Gerlach) Posey ‘05.

Welcome New Faculty


he Wellington School welcomed 15 new faculty members this fall.

Sean Corey joins us as 6th and 7th grade math teacher. In addition to student teaching in the cities of Dublin and Upper Arlington, Mr. Corey has been actively involved with students as a high school advisor for AmeriCorps and a sailing instructor at Columbus Recreation and Parks. You may also have seen him in a past BalletMet performance of “The Nutcracker.” Mr. Corey says he wants students doing math, rather than watching math. Kami Darling is the lead teacher in one of our pre-k classrooms. Dr. Darling has most recently worked in Southwestern City Schools as a preschool case manager and has worked at The Ohio State University and Ohio Dominican University as both an adjunct and assistant professor in their Schools of Education. She is well known as a child development specialist and is a frequent presenter in the field of early childhood education. Wellington alumna Ashleigh (Gerlach) Posey ‘05 returns to us as the kindergarten team learning guide. After graduating from the University of Kentucky with a degree in elementary education, she worked in the Midland Public School District in Michigan. Before becoming a member of our faculty, Ms. Gerlach has been a frequent substitute teacher at Wellington.

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Ryann Gilton joins us as learning specialist for grades 7-12. She formerly served as intervention specialist for Columbus Public Schools and has worked at McGraw Hill Education. Ms. Gilton, who previously lived in Hawaii and swam with sharks, says she believes that natural curiosity should direct learning and that understanding the unique needs of every student is imperative in teaching. Margaret Guy teaches Upper School mathematics. Ms. Guy brings with her a love of adventure, such as traveling, sea kayaking, and flying. She worked toward her pilot’s license as her independent project while in high school and soloed at 16. She looks forward to helping students take on a new perspective about math in her classroom. Cristen Healy joins us as 5th and 6th grade science teacher. She is currently pursuing her M.Ed. from Ashland (anticipated 2013) and has served as a long-term substitute teacher in both the Dublin and Olentangy school districts. Ms. Healy, who holds a B.S. in zoology from Ohio State, brings with her a love for all animals (and insects!). She once kayaked with wild manatees in Florida. Ms. Healy is a strong advocate for student choice and making connections between science in class and in the real world. Jill Hicks is a familiar face, following six years in Wellington’s Development Office. Along the way, Mrs. Hicks discovered that her true passion is education. She returned to school, earning a degree

in early childhood education with a reading endorsement. She will be a learning guide in 2nd grade. Jennifer Landon joins us as a Lower School learning guide. With a degree in early childhood education from the University of Mary Washington, Ms. Landon most recently worked as a director and trainer at a local child care program. She has additional experience as a teacher in preschool and 5th grade in Virginia. Her graduate studies have been in the area of differentiated instruction. Muriel Meray works in the Little Jags program with our youngest learners. Ms. Meray has taught classes from preschool through adults and most recently served as lead preschool teacher and program director at a local learning center. She has also had experience as an adjunct professor at several colleges and universities. With her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in addition to her M.Ed., Ms. Meray brings creativity to the classroom, where she encourages students to think outside the box. She is currently illustrating a children’s book written by her son. LeAnne Mohler is the learning specialist for grades K-6. With a degree in hearing and speech language sciences, Mrs. Mohler most recently taught 3rd grade at Northland Preparatory Academy, but she has also worked in West Virginia and North Carolina in the area of special education in multiple grades from early childhood through middle school. She has had extensive experience in the Orton-Gillingham approach to reading. Mrs. Mohler believes in establishing a positive democratic working environment and teaching to meet all student needs, in a fun and creative way. Michelle Neely comes to us from Denver, Colorado and will teach Upper School mathematics. She says that, because of its small size

and progressive spirit, Wellington is the school she has been seeking for many years: “It just feels like a utopia for a teacher and student.” She enjoys challenging students with math as well as making it fun. Jyotsna Sreenivasan joins us as the 7th and 8th grade language arts teacher. Ms. Sreenivasan is a published author, writer, and editor. She has worked as a teacher in the Upward Bound program. Ms. Sreenivasan says she feels strongly that her experience with writing, editing, and literature will engage her students and enable them to apply their knowledge to real-world situations. Laura Trubilowicz P ‘27 is working with the 3rd and 4th grades as a learning guide. She comes to Wellington from Texas where she has been a 1st grade lead teacher for the last six years (and an avid equestrian!). Mrs. Trubilowicz has a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education and a master’s degree in educational leadership and policy from the University of Texas at Arlington. Her areas of specialization are gifted and talented education and crisis intervention. Lissa Wade P ‘26 joins us as the 4th and 5th grade French teacher. Mme Wade holds a B.A. in French from Wittenberg University and an M.A. in French from The Ohio State University. She has taught French at OSU, St. Joseph Montessori, and Columbus Academy. Ms. Wade strives to create a community that connects students with each other and the world and enjoys hosting exchange students. Ashley Wilkins P ’22 ’24 ’26 joins the 3rd grade team as a learning guide. Mrs. Wilkins earned a B.S. degree from the University of Arizona and then specialized in literacy education at The Ohio State University with the completion of a M.Ed. degree. She comes to Wellington with experience as a classroom teacher in multiple grade levels in both Ohio and Michigan.

Barbara Rastetter pictured with books dedicated in her honor.

Barbara Rastetter Retires Barbara Rastetter was always a welcome face here at Wellington where she worked with children of all ages as the permanent substitute from 19942012 when she retired. Although she began her lengthy career at Wellington in the Middle and Upper Schools, Barbara quickly became popular in the Lower School as well. Thrilled to be a part of our community in a very full way, Barbara will always be remembered fondly by students and faculty alike.

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1. Front Row: Caroline Cooke ‘21, Taylor Killian ’21, Abigail Peterson ’21, Back Row: Griffin Biernat ’21, Benjamin Rigney-Carroll ‘21 2. Evan Yakubov ‘17, Ellora Majumder ‘17, Jasmine Haraburder ‘17, Emma Hans ‘17, Redd Ingram ‘17, Miranda Johnson ‘17, Evan Brandao ‘17 3. Serino Nakayama ‘18, Brianna Masters ‘18, Christina Armeni ‘18, Maia Kropp ‘18 4. Nathan Hay ‘19


Wellington Gives Thanks Rob Brisk P ‘13 ‘15 and Billy Brisk ‘13


he entire school community came together for our annual Thanksgiving Assembly on November 19.

The program opened with the 6th graders singing the Wellington alma mater before Head of School Robert Brisk welcomed everyone. He was later joined by his son, Student Body President Billy Brisk, to co-deliver a Thanksgiving message.


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The assembly continued with a cornucopia of music, song, and grateful reflections expressed by students of all ages. Students in the Lower School sang “Over the River and Through the Wood.” The 5th and 6th grade strings, led by Strings Director Karen Butler P ’12, ’16, ’20, played “Mythos.” Thanks were given in multiple languages by 8th graders. Students in 3rd and 4th grades sang a Native American blessing song. First graders told everyone what they were thankful for. Choir Director Lisa Springer led 7th and 8th graders in “Castlebay.” The Upper School choir sang “The Greatest Love of All” as a stirring reminder of how fortunate we at Wellington are to be a part of this supportive school community.

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ENRICHMENT SERIES CALENDAR: All events are open to friends and family.

January 16 | 8:15 – 9:30 a.m. Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee WEBINAR: Sugar and Spice But Not Always Nice: Gender, Bias, and Aggression in Adolescent Girls. Odd Girls Out. Queen Bees. Girl Bullying. January 23 | 6:30 – 8 p.m. 6th Annual All Things Wellington

Enrichment Series


he Wellington School’s 2012-2013 Enrichment Series began in October with an unforgettable evening featuring author and global thought leader Sir Ken Robinson. An innovative education expert, Robinson masterfully blended his professional and personal insight on recognizing and developing every child’s unique spirit. He urged parents and schools to move beyond the traditional paradigm of conformity and standardization because these methods cater to the lowest common denominator instead of inspiring our children to stretch themselves to their greatest potential. Robinson quoted author Anais Nin when advising us all against forcing our children into test score prescribed cookie cutter molds, “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” The series has continued, over the last three months with an amazing lineup of speakers, to impassion and empower our entire community to put the education of our children first and foremost in our minds.

February 6 | 6:30 – 8 p.m. Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee: What I Said and What I Meant: Improving Cross Cultural Communication February 19 | 6:30 – 8 p.m. Chris Cooke and Scott Emmelhainz: Optimizing your iPhone and iPad Experience March 5 | 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. BOOK CLUB: “How Would You Move Mount Fuji?” by William Poundstone April 3 | 7 – 9 p.m. Dr. Ken Ginsburg: Resilience in Action: Raising Children and Adolescents Who are Prepared to Thrive Columbus Academy May 6 | 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. Preparing Early for College Applications May 15 | 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. BOOK CLUB: “How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character” by Paul Tough


And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” fall/WINTER 2012 • 12




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1. Rob Brisk P ‘13 ’15 2. Caitlyn Guy ‘23, 3. Alexandra Armeni ’13, Matthew Dittrick ’24, Erin O’Neil ’13 4. Taylor Liles ‘25 opposite Page: 5. Sophie Hess ’15 6. Quinten Hutchison ’14 and Nick Hammond ’14, 7. Anna Spicer ‘26 8. Alex Devine ’25 9. John Haynes ’17, William Sierzputowski ’17, Amy Kounta ’17, Kellen Posacki ‘17 10. Erin Samora ‘17

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5 6 Wellington Celebrates the Holidays The day before winter break was filled with delight and good cheer as each class had a party with yummy treats and fun crafts and games. Earlier in the week marked the premier of the Upper School film students’ annual holiday video, always a hilarious send up of the Wellington community. To close the day’s festivities, parents, grandparents, faculty, staff, and senior buddies all gathered in the ROHR with Lower and Middle School students for the annual Wellington Holiday Sing. A tradition dating back to the school’s early years, the special event provided an opportunity to bring our community together before winter break. With music and songs from a variety of holidays, like Chanukah, Christmas, Divali, Ramadan, and Kwanzaa among others, the celebration was a warm and joyful ending to 2012.

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All School






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pictured: 1. .Max Winter ‘23 2. Henry Lin ‘22 and Alina Weaver ‘22 3. Nick Mayne ’13, Ben Brisk ’15, Shawn Meddock ‘13, Taff Anderson ‘14 4. Luke Liu ’16, Chris Doody ’16, Victor Verdier ‘16 5. Author Shelly Pearsall

Christian Braddy ’13, Jahi Dial ‘13, Leah Buckingham ’13, Helen Fite ’13, Jenna Tugaoen ’13, Jonathan Robinson ‘13, Meleah Moore ’13, abby conger ‘13, Nick Mayne ’13, Liz Zimmerman ’13, Billy Brisk ‘13

Upper School Mocked the Vote


After studying the election all trimester in their Current Events and Media Studies class, with particular emphasis on the media’s role during an election, Upper School students decided that they wanted to put on a mock election as part of the class.

They organized and ran the entire event. Students researched an issue of their choice from both candidates’ positions, evaluated the sources they found, fact checked, and created an infographic depicting their findings as a way to help educate the student body about the candidates’ stances on the issues (not to sway voters). The students then worked with faculty to register participants from the school community and ran the election all day. Upper School History teacher Erin Cornett ’96 was very pleased with the results. “I was impressed with their desire to dive into complex

issues in search of where each candidate actually stood on an issue,” she said. “One student, Jordan Tunnell, said something so profound to me that summed up our process, ‘What you believe in is often very different than what you think will actually work.’ “The students were equally passionate about running the election in a very fair way. They took their job as role models for younger students seriously and wanted to present valid, unbiased information and promote the democratic process. Even though some of the students in my class could vote in the actual election, they wanted to make sure every student felt that their voice was equally as important. That made me extremely proud! “What I enjoyed most about the course and the election was that it was almost completely student driven. Being able to teach this type of class keeps me as engaged as the students.”

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ALL school

Middle School Presidential Election Convention Jacob Sayat ‘19, Aquila Simmons ’19, Katherine Anderson ’19, Darius McElrath ‘19


uring October and November, Middle School Social Studies teacher Berc Backhurst’s 6th grade class created an ongoing Presidential election game.

“It was part role playing game and part board game,” explained Mr. Backhurst. “The class developed four fictional candidates to run for President. They all really took off with the idea. It was exciting to see.” For every activity, the four groups (each representing one of the four candidates) received “electoral votes” they could place throughout the Unites States. The four fictional candidates were Isaac Wong, Esteban Suarez, Rhonda Sniggledorf, and Kenny Saunders. Each of the “campaigns” created their own commercials after closely examining the elements of positive and successful campaign ads. In groups, the students created positive ads for their fictional candidates. Everyone was given the same commercial title, “What Makes America?” It was up to the individual campaigns to define those characteristics in terms of their candidate. The four campaigns then held a convention for their fictional Presidential candidates in the Jag Commons in which their commercials, songs, slogans, posters, speeches, buttons, and bumper stickers were shared before a very enthusiastic audience of middle school students. “The idea for this game came out of a conversation I had with Mr. Brisk about having a mock presidential convention with the students,” Mr. Backhurst said. “From there a couple of the students

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and I developed the game aspect around the concept of the electoral college and completing challenges to earn electoral points to win a mock campaign/election with fictional candidates. Learning through peer to peer games is supported by the book ‘A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change’ by Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown.” The students found the game to be a fun and inspiring way to learn about what can be a mystifying topic for even most adults. “I loved how elections work and what it takes to become President,” Sixth grader Jacob Sayat said. “I learned that politics, the economy, taxes, random current events in the world, October surprises, and the Electoral College all impact Presidential elections. Also, I found out that it takes a group of people to elect one person to become President. I learned a lot about my classmates working with them in groups.” Classmate Laura Vandermeulen ‘19 agreed. “This was a great way to learn about politics and the Presidential election. I felt like I was in an actual campaign and that my candidate just had to win. It was fun having our own election rivals.” Mr. Backhurst was pleased with the students’ progress in the class. “I really enjoyed watching the students respond in teams to campaign tasks with a sense of urgency, competition, and fun,” he said. “I was really proud that the students made connections and drew parallels between their Presidential campaigns and the actual Presidential election in ways that could only have been experienced firsthand.”

Lower School’s Swing Grade


ower School students spent the fall studying citizenship and government. The 3rd grade, in particular, took an in-depth look into their social responsibility by studying the different roles of the three branches of government, how the Electoral College decides elections, as well as examined key components of the Ohio Constitution. “We took the approach that voting and elections are civic responsibilities for all American citizens,” 3rd grade teacher Ryan Parsons explained. “I can happily say that we left both individual candidates out of the classrooms.” 4th grade

Each class was tasked with creating their own political party along with deciding on a mascot and color. The students were then asked to think about something that they wanted to see changed in our Lower School. Each 3rd grade student wrote persuasive paragraphs telling what their issue was and why it was important. They later presented in their homerooms and decided on one issue to represent the party. This was their primary election.

Fellow 3rd grade teacher Erica Reisen was impressed with the hard work and enthusiasm the students put into their assignment. “The Lower School election was a great way for the kids to relate to the election process,” she said. “It gave them an authentic learning experience, and they were so excited to get involved.

“After more discussions each grade level decided on one issue for the whole grade to take to a general election,” said Mr. Parsons. “All students were told that it was their responsibility to educate themselves on the issues presented and make a choice that was best for them as an individual.”

“By writing their own ‘bills’ and presenting their causes to their classmates, students took an active role in our school. They thought hard about what they would like to see changed at Wellington and how we could best go about it. When they presented their ideas, they were so passionate!

Representatives from each grade presented at a special town meeting the day before the national election. Students completed an actual ballot where they decided on their favorite desert (which was served one day in the dining room), they named the dog outside the library, and also voted on their own key issue.

“With third grade having three sections and second and fourth having just two sections, it gave us a real teachable moment. What a great way to explain the Electoral College and popular vote. We called 3rd grade the ‘swing grade’!”

The Lower School election was a great way for the kids to relate to the election process.

above, left: Jack Spicer ’24; above, right: Jake Goudie ’22, Alex Lott ’22, Maadhav Muralidharan ‘22, Erica Riesen

fall/WINTER 2012 • 18

ALL school Juniors in Philadelphia Juniors learned about the birth of our great nation with a visit to Independence Hall where they saw the Declaration of Independence was signed as well as one of the few first prints of the Constitution. They also stopped by Congress Hall and Betsy Ross’ house.

9th and 10th Grade Camp Students enjoyed the great outdoors before their indoor school adventure began this year. Wall-climbing, swimming, campfires, and fantastic food were all a part of this bonding opportunity between friends old and new.

Students then ventured off to different parts of the city based on previously discussed topics they wished to further explore like science, food, performing arts, visual arts, athletics, history, and outdoor activities. After a final visit to the Constitution Center, the junior historians headed home.

WELLINGTON Class Trips 5th and 7th Grade Kayaking Griggs Reservoir set the scene for some water fun with 5th and 7th graders as they made their way down the river together.

7th Grade in Washington D.C. Seventh graders did their own historical exploration this year with a trip to our nation’s capital. After a trip to the White House and various other notable sights within the District, students time-traveled to the 18th century with a visit to Colonial Williamsburg.

7th and 8th Grades on High Ropes Students in 7th and 8th grade worked on their team-building skills at Camp Lazarus. The high ropes course was designed to strengthen curricularsupport issues such as risk-taking, failure, and problem-solving.

8th Grade in Toronto Eighth graders took their first international class trip when they crossed over into Canada this fall. While in Toronto, students visited The Second City for improv games and gained unique perspective looking down more than 1,800 feet from the top of the CN Tower.

The impactful and fun activity was featured in both the Columbus Dispatch and ThisWeek News.

Remembering Caroline


any Wellington students remember Caroline’s Play World fondly. Named in memoriam for Caroline Pryce Walker, who attended Wellington before passing away in 1999 at the age of nine, the playground was well-loved

by all.

When the playground was later reconfigured for the Middle School to use, students looked for a way to keep Caroline’s memory close to our hearts. The class of 2012, led by Anne McKiterick, decided to gift a sculpture designed in Caroline’s likeness. The piece stands in front of the school, just to the left of the rotunda entrance, as a poignant way to remember the little girl who had such a profound impact on the entire Wellington community. 19 • wellington magazine

The Healed Helping the Hurt


remarkably diverse group of speakers have visited Wellington this fall to engage students of all ages. From as far as Uganda to as near as the eastside of Columbus, entirely different worlds were brought to our school through the candid stories of both men and women who have learned personal lessons in resiliency and self-determination. Young adult novelist, and Ohio native, Shelly Pearsall spent an entire day with the Middle School in October. Revealing her own path to published author, Pearsall encouraged students to find their passion and never give up following their dreams. Pearsall herself had been rejected by editors and publishing houses hundreds of times before her first book sold. Now she is an awardwinning, best-selling author who is proud to have made a career out of doing something that she has loved as far back as she can remember. Middle School students also kicked off their yearlong commitment to giving back to the community with a visit from Lawrence Funderburke, founder of the Lawrence Funderburke Youth Organization. A former Buckeye and Chicago Bull, Thunderburke shared his experience as a kid growing up in public housing in Columbus with a single mom and little hope for a future. “If you want to be great at something, you have to put your time and energy into it,” Funderburke said. “Clear out the distractions. Give your time, talent, and treasure to helping other people.” Obada Shamaa, an OSU medical student, spoke to Wellington 9th graders about the history and tenets of Islam on the 11th anniversary of 9/11. It was a timely lesson in understanding other cultures as Shamaa outlined the five pillars of faith in the Islamic religion and how they related to both the past and present relations between the Middle East and the Western World. “The more you read, the more you realize what you don’t know,” Shamaa told the class after explaining how vital education is to his faith. “Knowledge is humbling.” Perhaps the most sobering and yet ultimately inspiring speaker to visit the Upper School this fall was Frederic Ndabaramiye, founder of the Ubumwe Community Center. A special guest of Wellington Board Chair Nancy Kramer, Ndabaramiye’s harrowing account of surviving the 1994 Rawandan Genocide gave students insight to a horrific experience that few of us could imagine. Ndabaramiye had the biggest smile in the room, however, when he spoke of his current involvement in humanitarian relief for his homeland. Despite the tragedy of his past, his greatest happiness has come from helping others in need. pictured, right: Speaker Frederic Ndabaramiye

fall/WINTER 2012 • 20

ALL school

Tannous Family Gives Back


hen Bob and Marlo Tannous P ’14 ’16 began searching for a kindergarten for their daughter Mallory ’14, they began asking their friends and colleagues for recommendations. They quickly noticed that one name was mentioned consistently over many different conversations – The Wellington School. “Education isn’t just about the books and school work,” Marlo said. “It’s about the overall experience of preparing children for the real world.” Seeing that Wellington mirrored their own philosophies about selfdetermination and resiliency, Bob and Marlo enrolled Mallory, and later son Alex ’16, at the school. “Kindergarten was a great experience for both of them,” Marlo remembered. “Wellington gave them so many different options. Horseback riding and swimming proved to be fantastic opportunities for our kids to do something they maybe thought they couldn’t. It really empowered them.” Very soon after joining the Wellington family, Bob and Marlo also got involved at the school as a way to further contribute to the community. Marlo chaperoned class trips and became a parent connector. Bob was a parent volunteer making calls asking for donations to the Wellington Annual Fund. “Raising money is important because it provides the teachers and the school with the means to provide our kids with a well-rounded educational experience,” Bob said. “Marlo and I have always emphasized the importance of giving back to organizations that have had a huge Mallory, Bob, Marlo, and Alex Tannous

21 • wellington magazine

impact on our lives. Without question, Wellington has played a major role in our lives.” Bob and Marlo were also big believers in the 3-legged stool philosophy of including arts, athletics, and academics in education, so they were thrilled when both Mallory and Alex began playing school sports. Some of their favorite Wellington memories involved watching their kids’ hard work and perseverance pay off, like when Mallory and her basketball teammates defeated CSG in double overtime. Over the years, Marlo has dedicated much of her time and fundraising efforts to the Wellington Athletic Boosters. She firmly believes in the program’s mission to raise smaller amounts of money for meaningful areas, citing the recent additions to the strength and fitness room as the group’s biggest impact on the school. When Bob and Marlo thought about their future giving plans, athletics was a natural choice. They decided to establish the Mallory and Alex Tannous Athletic Fund to support an integral part of the Wellington education equation. “For us, the Wellington difference isn’t just about the academics,” Bob explained. “The kids are more prepared for what life has to throw at them, because they’ve experienced the real world beyond what they’ve been reading in books. Whether in athletics, arts, or academics, Wellington is about students enjoying the process of learning and being proud of what they’ve accomplished.”

Wellington Annual Fund Has Momentum


he Wellington Annual Fund officially kicked off on October 8 with the fun and caffeinated Pour It On event. Committee members worked very hard to make this years’ parentdriven campaign one of the best yet. For two nights, our dedicated volunteers made calls during our annual phonathon in late November. Everyone’s good will and humor made for a great event, raising nearly $26,000 from 66 gifts in just a few short hours. That brought the overall total to more than $235,000 toward the $400,000 goal. The Wellington Annual Fund supports the gap between tuition and the actual cost of student’s education, and will continue through June 30, 2013. Visit or email to make your gift today!

Eddy Lott P’22 ’24, Ken Goldberg P ’17, ’18, ’21, Jim Rieser P ‘17

Legacy Society Founding Membership Opportunity The Wellington Legacy Society was created to honor those individuals who have committed to support the future of The Wellington School by including a gift to the school in their estate plan. Donors who make this type of gift bestow a great honor on Wellington and deserve our gratitude during their lifetimes. If you choose to make a gift to Wellington in your estate plan before the end of this school year, you will receive permanent recognition as a Founding Member of the Legacy Society. There are many flexible ways to make a planned gift to the school to suit your personal interests including a simple beneficiary designation of a life insurance policy, a modification to a will or trust, a charitable gift annuity or other options. John Kadlic P ‘19 ’21 has been leading a committee of volunteers who are out in the community raising awareness of the Legacy Society, and the school has already received a number of generous gifts. If you are interested in exploring the options available or would like to become a founding member, please contact or a volunteer committee member before June 30, 2013. LEGACY SOCIETY COMMITTEE MEMBERS: John Kadlic P ’19 ‘21, Chair Laurie Connor P ’93 ’95 ’15 Chris Cooke P ’21 ’21 ‘24 ‘27 Terry Sanders P ‘23 Tim Young P ’01 ‘12 Geoff Webster P ’24 ’26 Laura Cooke ’90 P ’21 ’21 ’24 ‘27, Staff Katie Matney P ’26, Staff fall/WINTER 2012 • 22




Lower School 1. lillian schrader ‘27 2. vincent kerler ‘23 3. little jags 4. Sabrina Lee ‘27 5. Avery Thielman ‘23 and Andrew Taylor ‘23 6. Taylor Killian ‘21 and Abby Goldberg ‘21 7. Atticus Trubilowicz ‘27 8. (L-R): Aidan Guiou ‘21, Evan Manley ‘21, Matthew Reid ‘21, Sam Schwartz ‘21, and Zach Peterson ‘21 9. Gabrielle Moulton ‘23



23 • wellington magazine





Lower School students learn Native American music

Lower School Celebrates Ohio and Native Americans


n the Lower School, grades 2-4 are all learning about Ohio this year as part of a transition in which the social studies curriculum will be reorganized so that 1st grade will study the city, 2nd grade will study the state, 3rd grade will study the nation, and 4th grade will study the world.

“We believe that reconfiguring the social studies sequence will allow for a much more logical progression in understanding the world around us,” Head of Lower School Jill Webb explained. “Starting with the school, the city, the state, the country and then the world. The study of Ohio this year will allow us to make a seamless transition to the new sequence starting next fall, ensuring that no students have any gaps in their social studies experiences. Sharing the study of Ohio this year has provided multiple opportunities for cross-grade level sharing, trips, and student presentations.” Fourth grade teacher Erica Foster is excited about the change. “Having all three grades teach Ohio this year allows teachers to accomplish the transition more quickly, but it also opens the door for greater community building,” she said. On November 16, grades K-4 gathered in two separate groups for a Native American Celebration. The celebration was a culminating activity for our study of Ohio’s Historic Native American Tribes. Multi-age groups of students moved through four different activities: a Native American craft, playing Native American games, performing Native American songs, drumming, and dances as well as hearing Native American stories. Fourth graders read the legends to groups in the library and escorted their Kindergarten buddies through the experience. Mrs. Foster found the special day to be a success on multiple levels. “It enabled us to integrate special areas into the study as well as give students from different grades and classes a chance to work together in a new way.”

fall/WINTER 2012 • 24

LOWER school

Wellington’s Little Jags


ellington opened its doors this school year to its youngest students in our history. The Little Jags program for 3-year-olds began memorably on August 23 as 15 children were invited to explore a brand new room designed especially for them.

Despite their diminutive stature, there’s nothing small about the Little Jags innovative curriculum. Encompassing many of the same subjects as the older students in the Lower School, including art, music, French, physical education, library, and science, these children are learning about their vital place within the world. Under the nurturing guidance of Mr. Pete Kaser ’96 P ’27 and Ms. Muriel Meray, the Little Jags have planted and maintained an indoor organic garden, thrown clay on the pottery wheel, and adopted a class rabbit named Nora.


A new foreign country is introduced to them each week, with the children learning about the global community through cultural, historical, and culinary investigation. From Mexico to Uzbekistan, and everywhere in between, these Little Jags have already journeyed to more countries around the world in their first 80 days of school than the likes of any Jules Verne character. We invite you to learn more about Little Jags preschool by contacting or by attending one of our school visit opportunities. Pictured: 1. Dawning Welliver ’14 played for the Little Jags class 2. River Kaser ’27, Phinneas Pickett ’27 3. Sabrina Lee ’27, Elizabeth Cooke ’27, Henry Becker ‘27

2 Little Jags Make National Headlines


Wellington’s Little Jags were featured in a variety of media outlets in November after NBC4 News paid them a visit to film a story about all the toys being removed from their room and replaced with cardboard boxes. It was an intriguing proposition made by Little Jags teacher Mr. Pete to see how creative his students could be when no longer bound by conventional methods of play. After appearing on the local NBC4 evening news, the story was picked up nationally by The Today Show and later the NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams. Way to go, Little Jags!

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Meet Muriel Meray


uriel Meray is new to Wellington this year, but her profoundly positive impact on our Little Jags is already garnering accolades from parents and colleagues alike.

With her extensive background in education and art, it’s only natural that Ms. Meray has her 3-year-old students throwing clay on the wheel, painting Spanish tiles, and using various elements from nature to create sculptures.

Muriel Meray and Elizabeth Cooke ‘27

“I became interested in art as soon as I could hold on to a pencil and paint brush and discovered making art took me into fantastic other worlds,” Ms. Meray explained. “Art is an important form of self-expression and a vehicle for developing a sense of self. In the process of creating art, a child is also involved in problem solving, critical thinking, and sensory experiencing. Children learn in different ways. Art is a great medium for those who are primarily visual learners.”

Ms. Meray’s own childhood has given her unique insight into the world of pure imagination. “I was born in Zurich,” she said, revealing that she carries dual citizenship with both Switzerland and the United Sates. “I grew up playing on the clay cliffs overlooking Lake Ontario in the small town of Oakville, Ontario, Canada. “I love to find out about new things, sharing ideas, sparking curiosity and presenting thought provoking challenges. I enjoy hearing children questioning and encourage them to find answers. I love being an instigator and drawing my students into the realms of imaginative play.” Her favorite part of teaching the Little Jags is having a front row seat to all of their enthusiastic energy and seeing the surprise on their faces when they have discovered something new. “I get really tickled with the silliness, giggles, and tall stories of their make believe world.”

Wise Word of the Month


hree years ago Lower School Guidance Counselor Danielle Gibbs and Music teacher Laurie Parsons wanted to collaborate on developing a comprehensive teaching of core character values for students that parents and teachers could work together in reinforcing. They decided to choose six words per year to focus grade and age-level appropriate guidance lessons on. Lower School teachers were to be closely involved by posting the words in their rooms and having ongoing discussions with their students each week. Parents would be sent a newsletter every month with activities and discussions questions so they could strengthen the concepts at home. The 2012-13 school year wise words of the month are based on the books “Have You Filled a Bucket Today,” by Carol McCloud and “How Full is Your Bucket: for Kids,” by Tom Rath and Mary Reckmeyer. The start of the year began with an introduction of the concept of “filling one another’s buckets” which means showing respect and care towards others by using kind words and actions. Each teacher will be reading one of

these books in the classroom to reinforce this theme. Mrs. Gibbs firmly believes in the power of words. “Each month the children are reminded that they can fill each other’s buckets by using our wise words in their daily lives.” The wise words for this year are based on the six pillars of character, including: Respect - treating people and property with courtesy. Citizenship/Patriotism - doing Lexi Robbins ’22 and Rhea Singh ‘22 what you can to make your school and community better. Responsibility – Being reliable and dependable, honoring commitments to yourself and others. “Our vision is that through a community-wide effort of teachers, parents, and administration,” Mrs. Parsons explained, “we can impart the importance of these values on our students and have them demonstrated in daily activities and interactions with others.” fall/WINTER 2012 • 26

Mia Croft ‘20

Middle School

Language Arts Program at the Heart of the Middle School


he Middle School Language Arts program takes a humanities based approach that weaves connections between other subject areas and the real world. Reading and writing are naturally intertwined. Teachers Mary Potter, Marianne Crowley, and Jyotsna Sreenivasan use a workshop approach to writing where the focus is on process and growth as a writer. “It is a method that produces small miracles because it makes it safe for writers to take great risks,” Mrs. Potter explained. “Students are encouraged to write about what truly interests them; what is deeply meaningful to them.” Ms. Crowley assigns “Rambling Autobiographies” in 6th grade as a means of getting to know students at the beginning

27 • wellington magazine

of the year. “These pieces also help students get to know each other or learn something new about someone they thought they knew well.” This intensive examination of the self as well as others is at the heart of the Wellington Middle School experience. Empathy and compassion are themes touched on frequently for all the students throughout the course of the year. Ms. Sreenivasan feels strongly about the link between compassion and communication. “As language arts teachers, our greatest joy and biggest privilege is being allowed into each child’s world through his or her writing, getting a look at who our students are as people, and sharing their deepest thoughts, hopes, worries, and dreams. After all, that is why people write and read.”

“Fur of Delicacy” by Adenola Atekoja ‘20

I felt a piece of a delicate creature that softened my hand. Setting it free I watch the flowing and dancing through the gentle breeze, as if it was telling me to hold, calling my name, it whispered to me and cried, Hold me, hold me, don’t let me fall. Grabbing it in the air it landed Gracefully on my hand and was safe once again.

“The Moon” by Carly Butler ‘20

The moon, guardian of the night. She watches over everything at night, giving creatures moonlight to guide their way home. She gives wolves something to howl and to cheer to. She gives owls something at which to hoot. She comforts the stars that silhouette the night sky, playing on the stars. The Moon is the goddess of the night.

“Rambling Autobiography” by Aquila Simmons ‘19

I was born four days before I was supposed to be, and have been on my own time frame ever since. It was a month before my first birthday when 9/11 happened. I’ve grown up hearing the story of how my mom couldn’t get back onto the inland from work to make sure Dad, my brother, and I were safe. I grew up in Ohio where we had a huge backyard, so I could go outside and play in the creek whenever I wanted to, which I did often. I played imaginary games with my little brother Zeke and sometimes with my older brother Cy. We would play Pokemon, or build forts, or just stomp around and get wet. I can make chocolate chip cookies from scratch. My taste buds are extremely picky, so my menu is pretty limited when it comes to food. My favorite dessert is fudge. I had never gone a month in school without breaking any rules until I was in middle school, when they tightened the rules. My favorite cat, who is my best friend, died at the paws of my dog when I was in third grade. I love animals; my family has two cats, two dogs, one rabbit, two fish tanks (one of which is salt water), and a lizard. The bunny’s name is Pinwheel and is mine. I care a lot about my grades in school, but I also play tennis, soccer, and basketball. I believe that you need to try a little of everything when you’re young so you are ready to take any path in the future. So this is my past; the only thing that remains unknown is my path to the future. fall/WINTER 2012 • 28

MIDDLE school

Connecting with Ancestors:

7th Grade Creates Assemblage Art


n 7th grade art, students explore the concept of identity. They delve into what factors influence or impact their identity by documenting aspects related to self, home, family, and community or neighborhood through photography. They recently examined this concept on a deeper level by exploring their heritage and family while making connections to world events that transpired during the lifetime of a particular relative. Wellington Art teacher Jayne Young developed the idea for an assemblage project over the summer as an addition to the current curriculum so that students could apply previous knowledge along with the introduction of new techniques and media. The lesson was inspired by the assemblage work of Betye Saar. A native of Los Angeles, Saar was formally trained at UCLA in design and also worked with printmaking and assemblage. Her signature piece, The Liberation of Aunt Jemima, was created in response to the Civil Rights movement and race relations. Saar traveled extensively after receiving a National Endowment for the Arts grant. Her travels inspired her to created assemblage boxes and altars which she called ancestral works. Students viewed and discussed select works by Saar at the start of the lesson. “An Assemblage differs from a collage in that it is 3-Dimensional,” Ms. Young explained. “Students were required to incorporate a minimum of three different media as well as a printed image and a 3-D object. During one studio class, students learned how to create gum arabic transfers and trace and reductive monotype prints. This process required students to utilize online photo editing sites which allowed them to change color prints into black and white.”

(L-r): artwork by Emma Hans ‘17, Ryan O’Neil ‘17, and Margaret Meeks ‘17

Students experimented with the level of saturation and light, working to omit any and all grey tones. Created over a period of two classes, the digitally enhanced image was printed, coated with gum arabic, and set aside to dry. During the next class, students applied a mixture of etching and relief ink to the photocopy (matrix), removing the ink with a sponge. After applying two layers of ink, they transferred the matrix to a plexiglass plate, placed printing paper (which had soaked in water) on top, and used the printing press to create their print transfer. “The process was time consuming,” Ms.Young said. “Yet the kids were very excited to see the ghost like images they created! You’ll also see we were able to bring new life to outdated transparencies. Students photocopied images on the transparencies which when stacked, echoed ‘layers of history.’ Symbolism became an important component within the artwork. “This unit allowed students to share a part of their ancestral story through visual and written means. At an age when pre-adolescents are moving from concrete to abstract reasoning, seeking opportunities to address world issues, and developing an awareness of their personal identity and place in the global world, this lesson presented opportunities for students to learn about themselves while exploring connections with their family.”

A Life Examined


s the entire Wellington community reflected back on the school’s beginning, Middle School students took a closer look at their own families in Social Studies. Teacher Eric Sulzer P ’22 ’26 asked his 8th grade students to research their ancestors and present their findings to the class. Students discovered a diverse background in their personal history, including countries like Norway, Africa, Canada, and Russia. Most of the ancestors came to the United States in search of a better life than their native lands could provide. While other students’ great-great grandparents were brought against their will on slave ships bound for Virginia. Some families found it easy to prosper in both small and big business; others struggled for several generations to find financial security. The immense diversity among the families was represented in the multitude of formats with which the students presented pictures of their distant relatives. From Power Point to trifold poster board, history was brought alive in Mr. Sulzer’s classroom. 29 • wellington magazine

pictured: Nia Gill ‘17






Upper School pictured: 1. Alex Winkle ‘13 2. Kate Miller ‘15 3. Henry Bacha ‘15 4. The cast of “The Laramie Project” 5. Vishal Sharoff ‘13, Helen Fite ’13, Meleah Moore ’13, Jenna Tugaoen ’13, Leah Buckingham ‘13 6. Jakaysha Williams ’18 and Zoe Beatty ‘18 7. Jacob Wobbrock ‘16



fall/WINTER 2012 • 30

UPPER school

Monster Anatomy


lthough Mary Shelley’s novel “Frankenstein” was first published nearly 200 years ago and an ocean away, the story remains highly relevant to Wellington students and faculty even today. Written when Shelley was only 18 years old, the tale of creation gone awry continues to resonate with modern teenagers. The connection between past and present was obvious to Upper School English teacher Christine Robbins P ’17 ’22 when she first decided to teach “Frankenstein” and explore the fundamental question of what it meant to be human, both mentally and spiritually as well as physically. “I knew I wanted to reach out to the Science department,” Mrs. Robbins said of her initial desire to collaborate with Upper School Science teacher Trent Neely. So the two sat down during the summer and began brainstorming ways to connect their two classes, English and Anatomy & Physiology. Common themes were apparent to both teachers right away. “The whole process of creating the creature is very vague in the book,” Mrs. Robbins explained. “But at the story’s core is an organ transplant. Some could even call Frankenstein’s monster a biological weapon.” The students were then assigned researching notable medical advances during Shelly’s lifetime that would have informed her writing of the novel. Mr. Neely was impressed with the students’ level of commitment in exploring the various topics they were given. “Once we set them at their task, we let them go,” he said of the process. “They were focused on what they were doing. They were very engaged in talking about different topics. They were exposed to a lot more than we had expected.” The students weren’t alone in their amazement over what they learned, including the long history of human dissection and organ transplants that had been recorded as far back as ancient times. “I learned much more about all of the topics,” Mrs. Robbins said. “The facts and the history prove that biological weapons have been used forever. It’s not just a 20th century thing. The Hittites were putting dead bodies in their enemies’ water supply in the 18th century B.C.”

31 • wellington magazine

pictured, Standing L-R: Samantha Shepherd ’13, Alex Winkle ’13, Alexandra Armeni ‘13

The anatomy presentations promoted a lot of conversation among the students about the ethics involved in science. Later in the trimester, they decided to put Dr. Frankenstein on trial for crimes against humanity. With Upper School Social Studies teacher Curtis Hansen P ’12 ’15 presiding as judge, the students called various characters from the novel to the stand as witnesses for both the prosecution and defense. “The students were most fascinated by who was ultimately responsible for all the deaths in the book,” Mrs. Robbins said of the heated trial in which Dr. Frankenstein was ultimately acquitted. “It raised a lot of questions for them in terms of how responsible parents are in their children’s lives.” The issue of organ donation was further explored when Mrs. Robbins’ sister Corry Rausch spoke to students in September about her own experience giving a kidney to their father in 2006. Her poignant tale of the process behind being tested and then accepted as a donor candidate resonated with the audience, many of whom were deciding whether they should agree to become donors when getting their driver’s licenses for the first time. “I was very humbled to give the gift of life to my dad,” Ms. Rausch told the students before taking their questions and dispelling a few myths they had heard. At the end of her talk, she asked if any students were considering becoming donors. One student raised his hand and said that he “would want someone else to have a chance at life.” The class collaboration culminated in students visiting COSI to observe a live total-knee replacement via videoconference from Mount Carmel Hospital. Both Mrs. Robbins and Mr. Neely consider the first time partnership to be such a success that they’re already discussing combining future classes with further analysis of scientific literature.

Upper School Tweets Upper School Head Dr. Jeff Terwin began a dedicated US Twitter feed this fall. Finding the platform to be an ideal way of highlighting signature programs and activities as well as interactions of students and faculty, Dr. Terwin’s goal was to use Twitter to create connections between the Wellington community and outside groups. “It is sometimes difficult to capture the interesting and compelling aspects of our Upper School experience because many of those moments are fairly spontaneous,” he explained. “Twitter creates a vehicle for those moments to be shared. Whether it highlights the spin of the sinister Wheel of Class Participation in a physics class or a subtle moment of extra help between teacher and student, Twitter creates a dynamic window into our Upper School existence.” Don’t miss this adventuritter. Follow them @WellingtonUS.

Do you want to know more about robotics? Join us for

FIRST TECH CHALLENGE Central Ohio Regional Qualifying Tournament Saturday



The Wellington School | 3650 Reed Road, Columbus, Ohio Tournament runs 10:20 a.m. - 7 p.m. Check-in 7:30 a.m. | Games start at 10:20 a.m. The only tournament of its kind in the region. Teams from Indiana, West Virginia, Kentucky, and Ohio competing for a spot in the Ohio State Championship Spectators are welcome. Visitors can tour the pits and interact with the teams as they prepare for matches. There will be game play throughout the day leading up to the final at the end of the day.

fall/WINTER 2012 • 32

UPPER school Cast member Zoe Case ‘14

The Laramie Project


he Wellington Theatre Department tackled tragedy and triumph of the soul in its production of “The Laramie Project” on November 2 and 3. Upper School students, under the direction of Eleni Papaleonardos, presented a compelling dramatization of how the town of Laramie, Wyoming responded to the horrific murder of Matthew Shepherd, a 21-year-old gay college student. The groundbreaking play is the result of writer Moisés Kaufman and the Members of Tectonic Theatre Project traveling to Laramie and conducting more than 200 interviews with the people in the town. “The Laramie Project” examines the societal dynamic of a community forced to examine itself, both the good and the bad. The Upper School production’s stark set design enabled the actors’ captivating emotional performances to take center stage as they each played multiple characters within the story. The cast masterfully conveyed the raw pain and anger, as well as denial followed by heartbreaking acceptance, of a town torn apart by hate and fear. The Wellington School was honored to welcome Susan Burk from the Matthew Shepard Foundation to speak to students in the Upper School as well as facilitate talk-back discussions immediately following the Friday evening and Saturday matinee performances of the play. The lessons of Laramie will continue to resonate in all communities where the dialogue remains open and respectful for all of its members.

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3 5


pictured: 1. Cast members Amber Johnson ’14 and Chandler James ’16 2. cast members Zoe Mak ’16, Becca Vrabel ’14, and Erin O’Neil ‘13 3. Techies Jimmy Wiggins ’15, J.C. Reber ‘15, Ryan Connor ‘15 4. The cast of “The Laramie Project” 5. cast members Riley Barnwell ’15, Lucie Kirk ’15, Abby Fleeter ‘14, Becca Vrabel ‘14, Quinn Coleman ‘16

fall/WINTER 2012 • 34

Athletics Boys Varsity Golf

After an outstanding season last year, the Upper School Boys Golf team was determined to make a statement this season. While the team had young talent including freshman Princeton Ball and sophomore Justin Perdue, the group was led by four seniors who wanted to leave a final legacy on the golf program. Senior Jonathan Taylor says, “I think that the season went really well for the entire team. We got off to a fast start and I was really proud of all my guys throughout the entire season. We won more tournaments and made more top finishes this year than any other year.” Head Coach, Craig Mosier ‘99, couldn’t be more proud of how the players performed. Though the team fell short of claiming another state title, Wellington finished as the Division III State Runner-Up and the players have certainly left their mark not only within the golf program but also within the entire Wellington sports community. “We set records for team scoring average (313.7) and overall record (189-31). We tied the school record for tournament wins and finished second in the state. We also managed to have 13 of our 14 players play in at least one varsity match,” said coach Craig Mosier. The overall record for the season was 189-31.

35 • wellington magazine

Nick Mayne ‘13 , Alex Schilling ‘13, Jon Taylor ‘13, Quinten Henricks ‘13, Princeton Ball ‘16, Coach Craig Mosier ‘01, Justin Perdue ‘15

Boys Middle School Golf

In spite of a small roster and tough competition, the Middle School boys golf team still prevailed in seven of their season matches. In particular, eighth grader Evan Yakubov was the medalist in 14 of 18 matches. He represented Wellington well by finishing fifth in the ten-team Blackhawk Invitational. The team beat long-time rival Columbus Academy by one point. It was a long fight, but in the end Wellington golf came out on top. Other victories came against Gahanna and Walnut Springs, and the teams soundly defeated Worthington Christian by 42 points. Evan Yakubov had a great scoring average of 37.2 points per game, and sixth grader Jack Doody was the second low scorer with an average of 50.1 points per game. This year’s team was led by determined eighth graders.Next year, Coach Bill Meyer looks forward to eager sixth and seventh graders who will step up.

Boys JV Golf

The Wellington Jaguars JV golf team put forth a tremendous amount of effort this season and learned a lot while also having fun. Coach Nathan Burgess felt honored to work with the team. “It was nice to see a group of young men that were dedicated, courteous, and willing to put forth maximum effort every day,” he said. “Though our record may not have been the most impressive, as I look to the future I see talent that will translate to future success on the course.”

Girls Varsity Golf

The girls varsity golf team had yet another successful season, led by senior Annie Miller. Returning juniors Katherine King and Sarah Wayman improved greatly from their previous seasons, as well as sophomore Sophie Hess. New to the team this year were Quinn Coleman and Regan Price, both great additions. The season proved to be a challenging but very rewarding experience for the players. Coach Bill Miller felt the team as a whole did well at sectionals, placing 6th out of sixteen teams. Annie Miller qualified for Districts as an individual and went on to compete at the State Tournament. She finished 8th overall. Annie earned numerous accolades, including being named AllState for Division II. She was also named Division II Central District Player of the Year, 1st Team All-District, and Mid Ohio Girls Golf League Player of the Year. Other district wide recognitions went to Katie King, who placed 3rd Team All-League in the MOGGL, as well as honorable mention All-District. Fellow Junior Sarah Wayman was given the league’s Coaches Award. Freshman Regan Price was awarded MOGGL Rookie of the Year, as well as being named 3rd Team All-District and All-League. The team ended the season with an overall record of 39-30 and had scoring averages of 206 for nine holes and 421 for eighteen holes, respectively.

Annie Miller

• 8th place at State Tournament • 2nd Team All-State – Ohio High School Golf Coaches Association • Player of the Year – Mid Ohio Girls Golf League • 1st Team All-League – Mid Ohio Girls Golf League • Scholar Athlete – Mid Ohio Girls Golf League • Division II Player of the Year – Central District Girls Golf Coaches Association • 1st Team All-District – Central District Girls Golf Coaches Association • All-Ohio Scholar Athlete – Central District Girls Golf Coaches Association • Columbus Dispatch - Golf Athlete of the week (September 24-30, 2012) • Highlighted in This Week Newspaper – week of October 1, 2012 • Highlighted with Boys Team in Columbus Dispatch about returning to State Golf Tournament – week of October 8 • Quotes/mentioned in This Week Newspaper about State Golf Tournament – week of October 8

Annie Miller ’13, Sarah wayman ’14, Katie King ’14, Quinn Coleman ’16, Regan Price ’16, Coach Bill Miller P ’15, ’17, ‘21 fall/WINTER 2012 • 36


Boys Varsity Soccer

The 2012 season was characterized as a rebuilding year for the varsity boys soccer program, with more than half the team being comprised of freshman. The team faced tough competition, as the players gained experience and adapted to playing together. In spite of the challenges, the team notched four wins and continued to develop through the season. “The boys never gave up even during tough games. I was really happy with the effort they put forth all year long,” said coach Mike Byrne. The younger players really rallied around the seniors on senior night, enabling the team to secure a 4-0 victory over Village Academy. Senior Iakovos Anastasakis led the team on and off the field, netting 14 goals for the season. He also earned Second Team All-District. Coach Byrne is pleased to have such a large freshman class returning and feels the future looks bright for Wellington soccer.

Vishal Sharoff ’13 and boys varsity soccer team

Girls Varsity Soccer

In coach Burak Ergezen’s first year as a coach at Wellington, his focus was on giving the players strength in their soccer skills and knowledge. The squad finished with a record of 4-12-1. In the beginning of the season, the girls team was faced with many challenges and obstacles to overcome. One of the greatest challenges was the small roster. That, along with several serious injuries, forced everyone to work even harder to see results. Carrying the team was a core of talented returning players, including seniors Neale Snyder and Helen Fite and junior Annie Postle, who emerged as leaders very early on during the preseason. Freshman Abbey Mayne was a newcomer to the team that stepped into a major role and made a noticeable contribution. Their hard work was recognized when Postle was awarded Central District Second Team honors, along with Fite and Mayne being named to the Central District Third Team. Ergezen described Fite as a player “full of enthusiasm and feistiness..she was always eager to win and ready to encourage the underclassmen players to be confident and do their best.” Fite was constantly working hard no matter the conditions or what the scoreboard read which made her a shoo-in for the ROAR Award. Postle was chosen as Most Versatile by the coaches, and junior Nia Kaudo was selected as Most Influential. Although the coaches are sad to lose three stellar seniors, they are eager to see what the class of 2017 will have to offer the team and how they will be able to improve in the seasons to come. Zoe Mak ’16, Nia Kavdo ’14, Helen Fite ’13, Molly Anderson ’15, Annie Postle ’14, Abby Mayne ‘16, Carolyn Faller ‘15 37 • wellington magazine

Girls Middle School Soccer

The Middle School Lady Jags were known to play hard and fierce, and as a result, had a winning season of 7-5-1. The two eighth grade captains, Cassie Robbins and Emma Ruck, led the way to many victories. Notable victories came against CSG 3-1, Columbus Academy 2-1, Hilliard Heritage 2-0, and Hilliard Weaver 7-0. Ruck scored three goals in the season’s first come-from-behind victory against Everts Middle School. During the game versus Hilliard Weaver, five different players scored, including Emma Hans, who was assisted by Annie Taylor. The team shut out Hilliard Heritage (2-0), playing excellent defense, anchored by Muriel Goldfarb and Jackie Sierzputowski, along with Robbins as the goalkeeper. Overall the team scored 25 goals; Ruck contributed 12 and Jakaysha Williams added 5 goals, respectively. Next year looks bright, with strong seventh grade players and eager sixth graders ready to step up.

Boys Middle School Soccer

With a record of 12-2-2, this season marks the sixth year in a row that the middle school boys soccer team has not lost more than three games out of 15 to 17 in a season. “This year’s team can be characterized as an offensive power house with a stalwart defense,” said coach Berc Backhurst. “The team scored over 66 goals and had only 11 scored against us. The offense was led by Teddy Knowles ’17 and the defense by Cyrus Lloyd ‘17. With over 32 players total from grades 6 through 8, we were a tremendously deep team that consistently performed at a very high level across the board. Adding 6th graders to the roster was a very positive move for the team and the soccer program as a whole.” The Coaches Award went to two students new to Wellington, Chris Posacki ‘17 and Kellen Posacki ‘17.

fall/WINTER 2012 • 38


Girls Varsity Tennis

This season, the girls tennis team had the odds stacked against them early on, but they faced challenges with optimism. Marla Zitelman was a solid addition to the coaching staff. Having been a national champion at the collegiate level, she brought great experience to the program and hopes to continue to instill a sense of competitiveness in the players. In addition, the coaching staff worked to develop camaraderie within the team. Senior Meleah Moore says a highlight of the season was the ice cream party Coach Marla threw for the whole team. Even when the outcome to a match wasn’t ideal, the team bounced back and was ready for every kind of competition. Doubles pair of Ashika Katapadi and Casey Hansen, both sophomores, advanced to the District Tournament. Katapadi was awarded the Roar Award and Meleah Moore was given the Coaches Award.

District & State Awards Boys Golf

Quinten Henricks ‘13 Division III 2nd Team All-State, Honorable Mention All-District, Academic All-Ohio Nick Mayne ‘13 Academic All-Ohio Justin Perdue ‘15 Division III 2nd Team All-State, 1st Team All-District Alex Schilling ‘13 Academic All-Ohio Jonathan Taylor ‘13 2nd Team All-District, Academic All-Ohio

Girls Golf

Katie King ‘14 3rd Team All-League (MOGGL), Honorable Mention All-District Annie Miller ‘13 Division II 2nd Team All-State, Division II Central District Player of the Year, 1st Team All-District, League Player of the Year (MOGGL), 1st Team All-League (MOGGL), All-Ohio Scholar Athlete

Girls varsity tennis team prepares for a match.

Girls Middle School Tennis

This fall proved to be a fun season for all involved with middle school girls tennis. The team doubled in size from 8 girls last year to a roster of 16 players this season. The team dramatically improved their record, having one just one match on 2011 and finishing 1-9 to completing the 2012 season with a winning record of 7-6. Although the team was large, everyone still got to play and compete. The team enjoyed bonding activities like going to Whit’s Ice Cream following a match in Granville and dressing up in Halloween costumes for their final practice. Coach Pam Quigney said, “I believe it was a great experience for everyone involved, and I look forward to what these girls will accomplish next season!”

Regan Price ‘16 3rd Team All-District, 3rd Team All-League (MOGGL), League Rookie of the Year (MOGGL) Sarah Wayman ‘14 League Coaches Award (MOGGL)

Boys Soccer

Iakovos Anastasakis ‘13 2nd Team All-District

Girls Soccer

Anne Postle ‘14 2nd Team All-District Helen Fite ‘13 and Abbey Mayne ‘16 3rd Team All-District Helen Fite ‘13 and Neale Snyder ‘13 Academic All-District

39 • wellington magazine

Anika Crouser ‘19

Summer Options Program 2013 Preview


reschoolers (ages 4-5) will be able to attend all day rather than mornings only! They will be offered exciting new preschool classes taught by Wellington Lower School learning guide Jennifer Landon. The class choices will include Ooey, Gooey Science, All Things Seuss, and On the Go where children will have fun experimenting with how different building materials affect movement and speed while building cars, airplanes, trains, roller coasters, waterslides, and race tracks.

Students in grades 4-8 will have the opportunity to learn about personal finances and life skills by Lawrence Funderburke, CFP and former OSU and NBA basketball player. Using iPads, students will learn about cash flow management, credit and debit management, and much more. There will be daily field trips to a variety of companies to learn about business and philanthropy. A full 4-course meal at Bon Vie will give students a chance to learn fine-dining etiquette as well as tour the restaurant.

Back by popular demand, students in grades 2-4 will have the opportunity to explore math by making delicious food in Recipes for Math.

Wellington alumna Kyra Wagner ‘08 has developed an Aerial Arts following! This summer, her offerings have expanded to include more sections, an adult class, and a performance workshop. She loves having Wellington as her aerial home just as parents and students have loved the safe environment for their children to take risks and develop grace.

Bottle Cap Art continually stuns students in grades 3-5 with the beauty of their mosaic-like artwork and parents are just as thrilled with the addition to their home décor! Tech Corps will continue to offer Robotics and Programming classes. New this year they will offer an Android Processing class for students in grades 6-8 and a Web Design class for students in grades 3-5. These are sure to be as exciting, instructive, and creative as their previous classes!

Don’t miss the fun! Be sure to sign up to reserve your spot today! Registration will begin in mid-January. For further information, contact Peggy Berger at or 324-8882.

fall/WINTER 2012 • 40

Many alumni came back to play in the second annual Blanchard Bowl on the Friday after Thanksgiving on Roberts Field. Everyone had fun reconnecting on Roberts Field and the “Old School” team once again took home the Yakscoe Trophy.



pictured: 1. Back row: Rebecca Spears Hinze ’96, Kendra Garrett ’09, Andrew Zody ‘12, Corey Morse ’11, Isaac Dole ’99, Adam Stewart ’99, Rick Gambs, Nick Gallo ’91, Harrison Sewell ’08, Ian Fout ‘09, Brook Kohn ’08 Front Row: Mac Young ’12, Ned Young ’01, Adam Ashbrook ’02, Pete Kaser ’96, Bob Dolciato ’96, Zack Brown ’01 2. Many alumni came back for Wellington homecoming to watch the Varsity girls soccer team play Columbus School for Girls. Andy Connor ’95, Bob Dolciato ’96, Erin Cornett ’96 and Bice Dolciato ’96 had fun catching up during the game! 3. John Ohsner ’03, Bob Dolciato ’96, Rob Mason ’89, and Lyle Brown ‘89

2 41 • wellington magazine


Gareth Burghes: Beyond the Infinite


hen Wellington alumnus Gareth Burghes ’08 graduated from Stony Brook University this past May, he had the very common fear among recent grads facing an uncertain job market that he wouldn’t find work. But he had an advantage over many of his peers – an innate understanding of the direction in which he should steer his life.

old. Its goal is to teach kids about the marine environment and to gear them towards a conservation minded life. My first month there I had been promoted to Unit Leader. Seven days a week I was on the water teaching marine science and coordinating activities for the campers.”

“Your education is what you make it,” he thought. “You only benefit from learning or a college degree if you apply yourself. Find what you’re good at, find what you love to do, and pick a place in the world to change for the betterment of people and the environment.”

Gareth had other dreams that he wanted to pursue as well. Ever since joining the Wellington family in 5th grade, he had been interested in communicating sciences. “Although I’m a bright person, I was never the top of the class in marine sciences at Stony Brook,” he said. “I was unsure if the research science life was for me.

Within two weeks of graduation, Gareth found himself heading for a job in the Florida Keys. “I was hired as a science instructor/ camp counselor for Seacamp, a camp for kids from 12-17 years

“When I graduated from Stony I received an email from the school about a new program called Semester by the Sea: Creative Arts. The purpose of the program was to complete a creative project in 10 weeks. I already knew several researchers doing work on shellfish restoration at the regional campus so I decided to apply and make the short film. The idea was a product of the place and the research happening there.” Now completed, the film is currently being submitted to a variety of festivals and will be aired on a local education channel in Southampton, NY. Gareth is also designing a website for his production company Lagomorph Films. Gareth credits his time at Wellington for encouraging his creativity and broadening his knowledge base. “My best teachers fostered my interests,” he said. “I was never ridiculed for my interests for any reason. I was encouraged and trained to use what I’m good at. My goal is to continue communicating science so people can understand the infinite processes that make life amazing.” fall/WINTER 2012 • 42


Alumni News


David Kaucheck and Laura Wilkins Cooke ’90 had a fun reunion on the soccer field with their daughters who happened to be playing against each other during a travel soccer game this past fall.


Susan Fitch Didriksen is pleased to announce the arrival of Yale Coen Didriksen who was born 11/11/11 at 9lbs 14 oz. Just shy of his first birthday, he is now the size of a healthy 2 year old!


Sophia Badiya Mohr and her husband welcomed Beckett Dylan Mohr in August. The baby and older brother Jackson are doing well! Anneliese Bohm Adkinson writes that her two children, Lilliana (2nd grade) and Holden (Pre-K) are currently at Wellington. And THEY LOVE IT!!! Amy Strouse Spielman “My apologies if I have not been timely in answering your emails. I’ve had a new product in development for the past 37 weeks which was rolled out 14 hours ahead of schedule at 11:54 pm on May 31st, 2012; Measuring 7 lbs. 6 oz./20.25”L. So far defectives are at 0%, there have been no returns and we are predicting steady and consistent growth. There have been some hiccups along the way but the initial delivery was efficient and well executed. The first 2 quarters are expected to be a little up and down and there could be some volatility during years three and four, but he should mature in about 18 -20 years. We feel that this is a very unique offering, unlike anything else currently available in the marketplace, both functionally and aesthetically. Unfortunately, when he was manufactured the mold was broken, so he is a ‘one-of-akind’ product. He will be introduced under the “Andrew Colson Spielman” brand, sub-brand is in progress. Made in the USA!”


Ryan Krasik writes that he loved seeing members of the class of ‘92 at Steve Paull’s house in July. Rather than waiting another 20 years, he would love to host everyone who can make it for their 21st class reunion at his home in Maryland. He loves and miss everyone and can’t wait to see them again. Go Jags!

Teri Fuller Gennerelli writes that their second daughter Hannah Fuller Gennarelli joined her 2 year old sister Evelyn Kay Gennarelli in August. They all now live in Alexandria, Virginia.


Nicole Brinley Nucci and her family have lived in Arizona for 7 years now. She is a stay-at-home mom to a 6 year old daughter named Mia. In her free time, she enjoys volunteering at her daughter’s school, hiking Camelback Mountain, and taking advantage of Arizona’s grand resorts and activities. She would love to host a Wellington student in her home, who may be considering college out here or a job opportunity. The class of 1993 is celebrating their 20th high school reunion during Alumni Weekend on May 17, 2013. Please contact Katie Matney at for more information about your class events.


Abigail Williamson and her family recently moved to Connecticut for her new position as Assistant Professor of Political Science and Public Policy & Law at Trinity College. Stephanie Sellers Phillips writes that this summer her family (husband Brian, and sons Jack, 3, and Callan, 18 months) moved back to the US from the United Kingdom. She and Brian spent the last 7 years abroad and loved every minute and are excited to be back in the US so they can spend more time with their family and friends.


Neil Johnston and his wife Kelly welcomed daughter Alice MacKenzie Johnston on Tuesday, June 26. Alice was born weighing 6 lbs. 5 oz. and mama and baby are doing great.

Alumni Lunch ‘n Learn

The class of 1995 is asking for support from classmates to help raise funds to buy a bench that will be dedicated to the memory of Alex Fayne. If you would like to contribute to this memorial gift, please contact Katie Matney at If you have any questions, please contact Jerry Kaltenbach at


Alicia Althoff writes that life is great! She moved to Germany for a better job opportunity and is really happy in her new teaching position. Her parents came to visit her prior to her move in Prague and she plans to spend Christmas and New Year’s in Paris. She does plan to come stateside for a friend’s wedding in San Francisco at the end of March. George Faerber and Beth Allen Faerber recently welcomed Elouise Georgia Faerber. Elouise was 7lbs 13oz and about 3 weeks ahead of schedule, but perfectly healthy and has just recently learned to smile, which now seems to be her favorite hobby.

Alumni got together on Friday, November 9 for the first Alumni Professional Development Lunch ‘n Learn event. The event was held at the Wexner Medical Center University Hospital and guests had an engaging dialogue with Dr. Andrew Thomas P ’26 ’16 ’14. Dr. Thomas is a current parent and board member at The Wellington School and Associate Professor of Clinical Internal Medicine at The Wexner Medical Center and Medical Director for Ohio State University Hospital. 43 • wellington magazine


Alison Sayre Paugh writes that she has been working as a nurse for 3 years (a second career and second college degree for her) and she has already won 2 system wide awards in the Mount Carmel Health System. The Mount Carmel Health System is made up of 4 hospitals and 8,700 employees. Alison was one of 31 employees to win a system wide Ruby Award and she was chosen out of those 31 Ruby Award winners as the one Diamond Award winner for the entire system. The Diamond award is essentially the Employee of the Year award for the entire Mount Carmel Health System. Pictured is Alison and Claus von Zychlin, President & Chief Executive Officer of the Mount Carmel Health System.

The class of 1998 is celebrating their 15th high school reunion during Alumni Weekend on May 17, 2013. Please contact Katie Matney at for more information about your class events.


Amy Johnston Estes and her family welcomed Kaitlyn Quinn Estes on 7/7/12. She weighed 8lbs. 3oz. and was 21 inches long. All family members are doing well!

Abby DeGiralomo Thompson got her Masters in Public Relations from Indiana University in August. Isaac Dole and his wife Kate welcomed daughter Maya Rose Dole at 7:15pm weighing 5 lbs 14 oz. in July.

Idin Pirasteh is now Marketing and Communications Manager at Bella Saratoga.


TRETHEWEY WEDDING: Bo and Kyle were married Saturday, June 23 at the Doller Mansion and Gazebo on South Bass Island, ceremony officiated by Judge (retired) Janet Jackson, mother of Harrison Sewell ‘08. Wedding attendees included Wellington grads, former students, alumni parents and Craig Jones. Ravisha Kumar ‘98, Lesley Pfening ‘98. Elliot Benzle, Adam Morrey, John McCorkle ‘08, Harrison Sewell ‘08, Geoff Newcomb, Tim and Kitty Young P ’01 ’12.

Adam Stewart is now the Assistant Director of the Annual Fund at Denison University.


Adam Roberts is now Deputy Chief Underwriter at Oak Grove Capital.

Kristin Abbott has graduated from The Ohio State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and is doing an internship at the Portland Oregon Zoo for one year.

The class of 2000 reports with sadness the passing of Carolen Louise Kolezar, mother of Stephanie Wilson, on August 31, 2012. The class of 1998 reports with sadness the passing of Carolen Louise Kolezar, mother of Ross Wilson, on August 31, 2012.


Ned Young took a summer job working in Atlanta at Bain and Company. He is currently enjoying the student life as a second year at Harvard Business School. Hopefully he will see everyone soon! He has the chance to see his brother Mac ’12 who is a current freshman at Wheaton College and playing lacrosse.

Maximillian W. McClain, MBA is now an Account Manager at Liquid Soul Media. Casey Osterkamp writes that she got engaged in late August to Beau Underwood and will be getting married in July 2013. Kathryn Siegel writes that she is still living in Chicago and working for Littler Mendelson, P.C. as a labor and employment attorney. She is starting her fifth year with the firm. Shoshana Hindin got married on October 14, 2012 to Justin Koepke who’s from the St. Louis area. He’s in graduate school at the University of Illinois and I’m still in graduate school at the University of Southern California.


Kristen Bell has gotten her first full-time teaching position at The Villages Charter School in The Villages, Florida, which is one of the top 10 schools in Florida. The school is unique in that all of the students attending the school are able to do so because their parents work for or in The Villages, and is one of only two such schools in Florida. The school has programs for students in grades PK3-12, and reminds her in many ways of Wellington, especially because the school has such a close-knit, family atmosphere. fall/WINTER 2012 • 44



Kenton Mess married Janice Burkert on May 26, 2012 at The Country Club at Muirfield. In the photo: Kenton Mess ‘04 (groom) John Yakscoe, Bradford Mess ‘01 (black vest) Jeff Lipps ‘04 (blue shirt)

Jessica Brown and John Ohsner were married on September 29th, 2012 in Columbus, Ohio. They enjoyed celebrating with Wellington Alumni at The Blackwell. They honeymooned in Hawaii and visited the islands of Oahu and Kauai. Back Row (L-R): Bill Lamkin, John Ohsner, Jeremy Galbreath ‘03, Alex Para ‘03, Brendan Previte, David Lesgold ‘03 Front Row (L-R): Ciara McDermott ‘03, Jessica Brown Ohsner ‘03, Jess Saul ‘05, Kelly Ohsner Davie ‘97, Rob O’Grady ‘03. Not Pictured: Kiran Reddy ‘03 Jay Gaglani ’03, David Moore ’02, Andrew Cosslett ’01, Harry Lesgold ‘94 & Sarah Lesgold ‘00 Erin Mavian with her business partner and best friend Kym Pitlor, have created Blueprint Proposals: a boutique event consultancy, specializing in “drafting blueprints” for personalized marriage proposals incorporating the exquisite backdrop of New York City. More information about their business can be found on their web site: and blog:

Duncan Forbes moved to Denver over the summer and is now working for Mile High Youth Corps as their Community Relations Officer.


Jessica Hunnell married Troy Awsumb in Chicago on July 28, 2012.

Evan DeGiralomo has joined the Washington Township Fire Department as a Firefighter/ Paramedic. Ashleigh Gerlach was married on Saturday, August 4 to Alex Posey. John Yakscoe, Jennifer and Aaron Frim, James Allen, Adam Clayer, Emily Szabo, Courtney Gerlach ’99, Abby Conger ’13 and Matthew Conger ’15 were in attendance. Ashleigh is currently a kindergarten learning guide at Wellington.

The class of 2003 reports with sadness the passing of Carolen Louise Kolezar, mother of Natalie Wilson Kleoudis, on August 31, 2012.

45 • wellington magazine


Katie Gyurcsik recently moved back to Columbus last February to be closer to her family. Prior to her move she was working in Charleston, S.C. at an insurance software company called Benefitfocus. She misses Charleston and all of her friends a lot but it is nice to be able to see her family more regularly. While in Columbus, she is working on starting a cake business as a part time hobby, for now. She hopes to be able to expand her business in the future. Mike Lipaj is now a Management trainee at Enterprise Rent-A-Car Meghan McDevitt attended the 5th annual International Society of Managing and Technical Editors (ISMTE) conference in August and participated in a panel discussion on using social media in scholarly publishing. She continues to enjoy her position as an Editorial Assistant for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy at the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy based in Oak Brook, Illinois.

Natalie Wilson married Jimmy Kleoudis in August 2012. The two are living in Columbus.

The class of 2003 is celebrating their 10th high school reunion during Alumni Weekend on May 17, 2013. Please contact Katie Matney at for more information about your class events.

Libby Graf graduated from The Ohio State University with a degree in Early Childhood Special Education in 2009. During her 4 years at Ohio State she was a scholarship athlete and played defense on the OSU Division 1 Women’s Lacrosse team. She earned 4 varsity letters, was a 4 year OSU scholar athlete, was named to The American Lacrosse Conference honor roll for all 4 years, and was also selected for the College of Education Dean’s list for all 4 years. As a senior she became a Captain of the Ohio State Women’s Lacrosse Team. Libby received her Master’s Degree in Educational Psychology from the University of Colorado in December 2011. She currently is living in Denver Colorado and is employed as a Reading Intervention Specialist in Denver Public Schools.

Colin Peters is a law clerk with Samuel H. Shamansky Co., L.P.A. Meredith Siegel is now Client Service Analyst at SymphonyIRI Group


Stefan Viragh is now working at the Reebox headquarters on their Go To Market Team.


Ashley Fuller is a Senior Airman in the 121st Air Refueling Wing of the Ohio Air National Guard. Ashley was voluntarily deployed in Qatar for 4 1/2 months and returned home at the end of November. While away she was responsible for arranging special events for distinguished guests. Ashley received numerous citations for her hard work and dedication while deployed. The class of 2008 is celebrating their 5th high school reunion during Alumni Weekend on May 17, 2013. Please contact Katie Matney at for more information about your class events.


The class of 2009 reports with sadness the passing of John Tugaoen, father of Zach and Jenna, ’13 on Friday, July 27, 2012.

Elin Seren Writes About Her Personal Experience with Kismet


ellington alumna Elin Seren ’89 recently had a feature article she wrote called “Kismet” published in the Columbus Dispatch. Her story details the amazing tale of reuniting with a former elementary school classmate nearly 20 years after last seeing each other and going on to marry this November. Elin likened the extraordinary odds of meeting her soul mate so early in life and then later reconnecting after a lengthy separation to “kismet,” or fate. “My aunt Nili always told me every pot has a lid or a cover and that someday I would find mine,” she wrote in the article. “Who knew that I found my lid in kindergarten?”


David Nassau is enjoying Earlham. He’s made new friends and is taking cool classes. He feels that Wellington prepared him for this experience. Jon Miller transferred from Cornell to Dartmouth for his sophomore year. He really wanted to get into Dartmouth in the beginning but he didn’t get in – so he worked super hard at Cornell – applied and transferred and is now very happy at Dartmouth. Nick Vasko is on to his Sophomore year at Cornell University in the School of Hotel Administration. He is studying real estate and finance. He spent last summer working at Stifel Financial and starting a real estate development consulting and investment company with his fellow alum CeCe Wilkes.

Columbus Day Parade

Jacqueline Blount ‘98 and sister Elizabeth Blount McCormick ‘96 were the Grand Marshals for the Wellington Columbus Day parade. Here they are with Jonathan Robinson ‘13 and Mira Syed ‘13.

Class of 2012 Care Package Party

Parents of the class of 2012 had a fun reunion on October 9 putting together care packages for their sons and daughters in college. Members of the class got a fun present in the mail and the parents had a great time catching up.

The Moms Are Coming!

On October 23, Linda Wallingford hosted a coffee for mothers of members of the class of 1996, 1998, 2000 and 2001. Many mothers attended and had the chance to reconnect. In this photo from left to right: Kristi Johnston P ’99 ‘01, Katie Matney P ’26, Maureen Brolick P ’00, Jann Heffner Osterkamp P ’01, Linda Wallingford P ’96 ’98 ’00 ’01, and Gwynyth Mislin P ’97. fall/WINTER 2012 • 46

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The Wellington School is an independent, coeducational, preschool through grade 12, college preparatory grade school dedicated to preparing citizens who achieve, lead, and find fulfillment in a global community.


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Wellington Magazine - Fall/Winter 2012  

The Wellington School Magazine Fall/Winter 2012

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