Jasmine Powell '18
Currently Attending: Brown University
Years at Shipley: 14
Activities & Positions Held: Positive Paws, Math Peer-Tutoring, DECA Co-President, Varsity Lacrosse Co-Captain, Varsity Field Hockey Co-Captain, BSU Co-President, Executive Council Representative
How Shipley Shaped Me
As a lifer, I can truly say that Shipley has been responsible for my entire academic journey and most of my social one. I was always a curious girl who loved to learn, but because of Shipley I was able to leave my shyness behind and become the confident, self-assured leader that I am today. The amazing teachers that I’ve had over the years truly cared about me as an individual and took the time to bring out the best in me.
The academic rigor of Shipley has also been great because it definitely challenged me, but it also showed me that I am capable of so much more than even I may realize. I feel well prepared to handle high-level work in college because my teachers in high school truly pushed me.
I also really appreciate the fact that Shipley allows students to follow all of their passions. I experienced this both with academics and with extracurriculars. I have always loved languages and after taking French and Latin all throughout Middle School, I decided that I wanted to continue taking both of them in Upper School. At many other high schools, this would not have been possible, but Shipley purposely structures their schedule in a way that allows students like me to take an extra major course. I can proudly say that I took both Latin and French at the Honors level all throughout high school. Because of Shipley, I had the courage, confidence, and ability to take six major courses, be a two-sport varsity athlete, and even perform in the spring musical Hairspray!
Who was your most influential teacher and why?
I have had the privilege of being taught by so many amazing teachers throughout my 14 years at Shipley. Although each of them has greatly influenced me, I would say that Mr. Rich and Mrs. Pickering have had the greatest impact on me as both a student and a person.
Coming into the Upper School, I had a very strong interest in the Latin as a language, but Mr. Rich quickly took my love for the language to a next level by introducing me to great Roman authors. As we read works such as Vergil’s Aeneid and Cicero’s Sominum Scipionis, I began to connect the thoughts of these authors to the complexities of the human condition and the tensions present in our world today. Because Mr. Rich centered our class discussions around these important connections, it quickly became apparent to me that Latin is not a dead language at all. Additionally, he pushed me to master the fine points of Latin grammar which have made me pay close attention to the details in all subjects.
Before having Mrs. Pickering, I would say that I liked both English and History class, but after being lucky enough to have her for both of those classes, I discovered how interconnected the two disciplines are and fell in love with both of them. I had Mrs. Pickering first for Modern European History and then for English 11. In both of these courses, she shared her vast knowledge on topics that went well beyond what the textbook covered. These anecdotes made me truly think about the material in ways that I otherwise would not have. She pushed me to make connections between literature and the historical context it was written in. Mrs. Pickering also helped me to become a better writer by pushing me to be ambitious with my claims and to select the most specific word possible to express what I mean.
Most Memorable Experience
Over my 14 years at Shipley, there have been countless amazing experiences, but I would say that the French Exchange was the most memorable. Over spring break of my junior year, I was lucky enough to go to France with other students from both Shipley and Baldwin. We got to tour Paris, but honestly, the best part of the trip was living with our host families in Villefranche-sur-Saône. Even though I was miles away from both home and the classroom, it was amazing to see how well the things that I learned in French class prepared me for life with a French family. The next year, my correspondent stayed with my family at our home and they were equally amazed how French at Shipley had prepared me to communicate with a native speaker. Beyond the language component, the program is amazing because it allows us to learn about another culture. I will never forget the experiences I had both in France and while my correspondent was at my house for the rest of my life. This program also allowed me to make a lifelong friend.
Plans for Fall 2018
I will be attending Brown University. I was also admitted into the University’s Program in Liberal Medical Education (PLME), an eight-year combined baccalaureate-MD program which encourages students to pursue their varied interests across disciplines on their journey to becoming a doctor. In the fall, I will begin studies in this amazing program.
What does “Courage for the Deed; Grace for the Doing” mean to you?
To me, our School’s motto means being brave enough to go out and perform a daunting task like changing the world, but doing it with kindness, humility, and poise.
Complete this sentence: Shipley has prepared me...
to speak up for myself in all situations and confidently move about the world.