Mid-quarter sees students and staff excited and getting ready to venture off-campus on one of our signature Integrated Aventuras. These trips – program requirements and key experiences for NSA students – are truly integrated and intentionally designed to foster growth in Academics, Experiential Education, and Personal Growth.
This month, depending upon their progress within the program, students and staff will be hiking the wild rainforests of Corcovado National Park, working to save endangered sea turtles with Osa Conservation, or kayaking the pristine waters of the Golfo Dulce.
Keep an eye out for photos and stories from these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities in the coming issue!
Broadening and deepening student perspectives on their path to developing into citizens of the world is a key facet of our mission at NSA to prepare students for success in their next steps.Our innovative Global Citizenship program engages students in the study of the eight facets of Global Citizenship, while strengthening the knowledge that these facets are not simply a class, but critical elements to thrive in and contribute to an increasingly complex world. As part of this program, our entire community takes on a different facet in two-day workshops eight times per year.
Teacher “owners” of each facet – which include Human Rights, Diversity, Conflict Resolution and Digital Citizenship – design and facilitate these workshops, engaging students in real, hands-on learning while investigating local and global issues.
Our most recent workshop, focusing on Ecological Stewardship, included an analysis of the documentary Your Environmental Road Trip (available here: http://www.yert.com/film.php), and an afternoon Skype interview with the filmmakers on their inspiration and experiences making the film!
As the NSA community moves into April, our graduating seniors move into their Transition Quarter. Throughout the quarter, they will be preparing for life after NSA by drafting comprehensive Transition Plans, working out Parent Contracts, practicing more independent living skills in the Transition House, and making a big decision: where to enroll in college!
After months of introspection, dedication to the application process, and anxiously awaiting responses, we can say that our seniors face no shortage of amazing options.
Just a handful of schools offering admission to our students include: Bennington College, the University of Southern California, Pepperdine, Loyola Marymount, Rollins, Eckerd, The University of New Hampshire, Trinity, Reed and Kalamazoo!
To top it off, our students this year have been offered a combined four-year merit scholarship total of over $1,000,000! Congratulations seniors, we can’t wait to hear about your many future successes!
Sometimes our students need to let loose and just be kids! Recently, our guys worked with our Experiential Education department and their Student Council to plan and hold a Saturday recreational day based off of the Lord of the Rings world created by J.R.R. Tolkien.
Students worked for weeks organizing games and prizes, planning a Middle-Earth feast, and creating costumes for the culminating event: an all-school LARP (Live Action Role Play) of some of the epic battles from the trilogy. Capes, cardboard helmets, and foam pool noodle swords set the stage, and gave our students a chance to engage in some fun Middle Earth battle.
New Summit Academy’s Academic and Experiential Education programs are designed to immerse students in the language and culture of Costa Rica, forging cross-cultural perspectives and understanding as we work to develop Global Citizens.
Beginner and Intermediate Spanish classes prepare students for these immersion experiences by studying grammar through the lens of weekend cultural activities, which serve as culminating experiential learning opportunities. Weekend activities range from local festivities and horse parades, to sporting events, coffee plantation tours, museum visits and more.
Students in advanced Spanish classes have an additional opportunity to work with our Spanish teacher and Cultural Coordinator, Daisy, in designing immersive experiences based on their interests and passions, and solidifying their Spanish Language skills in fun, hands-on ways.
The opportunities are unique to New Summit Academy, and we are proud to offer them as integral parts of our program.
NSA celebrated another successful quarter with two graduates – both completing the program and earning high school diplomas with honors. Each graduation is a time to reflect upon student journeys and the skills they have built, relationships they have forged and strengthened, and the new and exciting options they have created for themselves through hard work and dedication. These two graduates both plan to enroll in college in the fall, and have already been accepted to some outstanding schools, including the University of Southern California, Pepperdine, Whittier, Westminster, Puget Sound, Rollins and Loyola Marymount!
After the graduation ceremony, it is time for students and staff to take a break and have some fun. This quarter, the group traveled to the Arenal Volcano region to take advantage of the natural beauty and countless recreational activities in the area. Students and staff spent the week whitewater rafting, swimming at La Fortuna waterfall, and cruising the lake under the shadow of the volcano. Everyone returned refreshed, energized and ready to begin another rewarding quarter at NSA.
As a part of New Summit Academy’s program graduation requirements, students have the opportunity to earn certifications in a variety of areas, including this spring’s Wilderness Advanced First Aid (WAFA) certification.
For over a decade, our school has teamed up with professionals from the Wilderness Medicine Institute to engage our students in a weeklong, professional-level course. Throughout the week, students and staff learn side-by-side how to prevent, assess and treat medical issues when far from civilization.
Classes are rigorous and challenging, but students respond well to the fact that each lesson is reinforced with hands-on “scenarios” where knowledge can be put into immediate practice. For the entire week, our campus becomes the backdrop for wilderness emergency simulations, and students can be found following the patient assessment system, dressing wounds, setting broken bones, and practicing evacuation techniques.
A culminating (and always exciting) simulation involves a half-day, off campus scenario dreamed up by the WMI team. This year’s simulation challenged students to assess and treat patients in the wilderness after a hot air balloon accident! After learning and practicing wilderness medicine techniques for the week, and after successfully passing both a written and practical examination, students are proud to show off their WAFA certifications. Congratulations to everyone involved!
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