Meet Lydia Chambers '18

Lydia Chambers '18
Currently Attending: 
University of Pennsylvania
Years at Shipley: 4
Activities & Positions Held: Co-Head of Spectrum, Swimming, Softball, Chess Club, Positive Paws, Catch Club, BSU, Stage Crew

How Shipley Shaped Me
Shipley has prepared me to be my own best advocate. I always found more success when I was proactive about getting classes I wanted or changing projects. I needed to push myself to take harder courses and fight for the things I want. If I didn't do it, it isn't that no one else would help me, but rather that no one could know what I needed without my speaking out.

My first year I did not take all the classes that I wanted to take, some seemed too difficult and some too easy. Mandarin was one that I thought was too difficult. I had taken Mandarin in middle school but was still behind the class. While it was challenging, this class taught me how to succeed when I felt like I could never catch up. Because of this, I decided to always take more challenging courses rather than a course that is too easy. I can work to catch up in a class with the help of my peers and teachers, but I couldn't make an entire class move more quickly.

Who was your most influential teacher and why?
It's hard to pick just one teacher at Shipley who was most influential. I'm not sure yet which teacher provided me with what will be most crucial in my future. I have had many teachers that provided me with different information and skills that I expect to use. In academics, Dr. Rebholz was a central role model for me. He is quietly brilliant and a truly gifted teacher. He makes topics accessible to an entire class rather than just one type of student. I also had many teachers that I was able to make personal connections with that helped me outside of academics. In particular, I was able to rely on Maria Stroup and Sarah Sterling. I found more than one adult in my school community that I could really trust.

Most Memorable Experience
Modern European History Honors is not a class. It's an experience. Ask any student who has taken the course if that's true and I'm sure they'll agree. It brings the entire class together because you all have a shared experience. Modern Euro was the first clear difference for me between middle school and upper school because it's really hard. We wrote more papers than I was prepared for and the tests were notoriously difficult. This was a sort of a wakeup call that coasting wouldn't cut it anymore and I needed to hone my time management skills because I'm not capable of pulling an all-nighter. I wish that I could retake that class, but I think the only thing that could prepare me for Modern Euro was the class itself.

Plans for Fall 2018
I plan to attend the University of Pennsylvania and enter the Vagelos Scholars Program in the Molecular Life Sciences.

What does “Courage for the Deed; Grace for the Doing” mean to you?
“Courage for the Deed” means that we must attempt what scares us. We must take on challenges rather than turning away. “Grace for the Doing” means that rather than being flustered and angry, we must try again if we fail. “Courage for the Deed; Grace for the Doing” is about ambition and perseverance for me.

Complete this sentence: Shipley has prepared me...
to be my own best advocate.


The Shipley School is a private, coeducational day school for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. Through our commitment to educational excellence, we develop within each student a love of learning and a desire for compassionate participation in the world.