The Senior Class Gift is one of many traditions that punctuate the end of the school year and helps to encourage consideration for the impact of both legacy and philanthropy. Well before the end of the school year, a group of seniors begins working with the advancement office to brainstorm ideas for a collective class gift to campus. As they think about a gift, the class reflects on culture, place, student life, and one another.
A gesture of the powerful New Hampton experience, historically the graduating class has maintained near 100% participation in the class gift, an exception among many independent schools.
The Class Gift Tradition
For those who have spent time on campus, many previous class gifts are familiar features across the grounds. The Class of 2012 installed a sun dial outside of the Pilalas Center for Math and Science. The iconic husky statue over-looking campus is from the Class of 2007. Two years ago, the Class of 2016 designed a sitting area with a granite bench outside the Country Store. And the Class of 2017 added a fire pit to the patio overlooking campus where the husky statue sits.
Brainstorming a Legacy
The Class of 2018 had many inspired ideas including a senior swing, a gazebo, and a granite welcome sign. Ultimately, the gift committee decided on a patio under the birch trees beside the upper pond. This is a signature spot on campus, already featuring a previous class’s gift of a granite bench. Community members are frequently found sitting on the bench overlooking the pond, enjoying a quiet spot for reflection or basking in the sun after a dip in the water.
This year’s senior class was lucky to enlist help from a landscape designer and alumnus, Eric Buck ’01, who generously partnered with the gift committee to design and install the patio. Our seniors and community have much gratitude for his vision and creativity. The final project is beautiful, set among a backdrop of birch trees.
Senior Brick and Patio Dedication
As noted during the gift dedication on Friday night, the class gift captures the spirit of the Class of 2018. They’ve chosen a spot for reflection and thoughtfully considered the legacy they will leave on campus. We are thrilled by the gift they have left to the school, and we know it will be enjoyed by many; from underclass students stepping up next year, to new families and students we have yet to meet, and endless alumni returning to campus.
The Gift Committee
A special thank you to this year’s Senior Class Gift Committee led by Griffin Goldstock, Eva Hodgson, Mikayla Williams, Stella Greville, Kyra Leland, JT Wheelock, Evelyn Liu, Savannah Norcross, Megan Evans, and Mairead Ryan. We thank the whole Class of 2018 for your generosity and the many ways in which you have shaped New Hampton School.