the westminster news
Published by the students of Westminster School
By Alice Liu '23
As the trees surrounding Edge and Gund blossom, Martlets enter a new season characterized by vitality and renewal. For the class of 2023, in particular, spring 2022 is their first authentic Westminster spring after being online for their freshman spring and navigating Covid restrictions their sophomore spring. For some members of the class of ‘23, including myself, this spring is our first spring physically being on campus. April 2022 marks the first time we see the 7 p.m. sunset on the quad, enjoy the blossoming of the flower trees near the dorms, and embody diverse emotions for stickball.
What is it like to experience the Westminster spring for the first time as Fifth Formers? To actualize this exhilarating, multi-facet experience, I spoke to members of the Class of 2023 about their experiences.
When asked what marks the biggest difference between spring and winter on campus, Fifth Formers note the skyrocketing sense of optimism that shrouds the campus. Catherine Rodrigues ‘23 notes that “The second it got warm, people started smiling more, and the morale around campus is outstanding.” Echoing Catherine’s comment, Maggie Schleer ‘23 remarks that stickball is an important factor spurring this shift toward increased optimism. Maggie appreciates that stickball “Brings together a diverse group of people onto the quad, and has allowed [her] to see so many new faces.”
While all agreed on the outstanding optimism permeating campus, Fifth Formers diverged on the upcoming event they are most looking forward to. A wide smile appeared across Anabel Brawn ‘23’s face when she described her “high expectations” for the Lawn Ceremony. Describing the moment she steps onto the “very special and sacred” Sixth Form lawn as the “crowning moment of junior year,” Anabel is eager to become a Sixth Former. Both Elizabeth Wolf ‘23 and Catherine look forward to their tennis match this Friday. Telling me that they are each other’s double partners, the pair notes that “It is so nice to finally be able to play sports outside!” Sharing in Catherine and Elizabeth Wolf’s excitement for spring sports, Elizabeth Diblasi ‘23 enthusiastically voiced her support for spring sports teams in “Go lacrosse, softball, tennis, and track!” Elizabeth also looks forward to playing spikeball, ultimate frisbee, and volleyball with her friends. She particularly appreciates ultimate frisbee, succinctly summarizing her position on the sport with “Love ultimate frisbee.” Elizabeth highlights that 5-6 pm is the best time to enjoy frisbee because of the “excellent sunset” and the “cool breeze.”
Stickball plays a central theme in Fifth Formers’ comment on spring on campus. All Fifth Formers I have spoken to reported top ratings for the activity. A skilled participant, Maggie rated her stickball experience a solid 8/10. Both Catherine and Elizabeth Wolf rated Kelter’s match against Edge a solid 10/10. Elizabeth Diblasi, recounting the exhilarating tales she heard about the match, also rated it a 10/10.
There are, of course, a few uncertainties looming around Fifth Formers as they enter their first spring on campus. With her first AP exam coming next week, Anabel feels slightly nervous. Elizabeth Diblasi is also grinding for her AP exams. When I entered the room she shares with Maggie in Kelter this evening, Elizabeth was preparing for her AP Calculus AB exam. Ultimately, however, Fifth Formers devote more focus on the content of their classes than on the AP exam. Anabel notes that she especially enjoys her APUSH class with Mr. Griffith. “I love analyzing from an academic perspective recent events that I have lived through, such as the housing crisis and the 2016 election,” she tells me.
Enjoying their classes and time with friends outdoors, Fifth Formers report tremendous positivity toward their experiences on campus this spring. Elizabeth Diblasi, Anabel, and Maggie all responded to “how I’m feeling right now” with an 8/10. Catherine and Elizabeth Wolf gave a 9-10/10. Ultimately, Martlets are grateful for the weather, their time with friends, and the excellent support from the faculty.