By Sophie Frushell ’17
I was daunted when I returned home from my first year away at college to find a horde of college kids just like me scrambling to claim the few summer jobs available. Luckily, Mr. Kerney and I had discussed an internship opportunity in the admissions and marketing department in January. I was able to reach out to him to see if the opportunity was still available and sure enough he was happy to help. As soon as I was back on campus I was recruited to help out with the summer school program as well. It is moments like these that I am grateful that I attended The Winchendon School; a place where I can still reach out to my old Head of School and stay connected with an entire network of teachers and administrators who are still eager to help me succeed even if I am no longer their student. Not only can I receive class credits for my summer internship at Boston College, but I have acquired so many essential skills, not just in the marketing profession, but for any job I want to pursue in the future. I have written articles, conducted interviews, created press releases, Facebook ads and conducted a/b split tests. I have practiced basic but necessary office skills like scanning, packaging mail, sorting photos and files and working with programs like Microsoft, Google Drive, and Facebook Ad Manager. Just as the skills and lessons I learned during my time as a student at The Winchendon School have guided me in my first year at Boston College, I am confident that what I have learned this summer will prove useful as I return to college in the Fall and seek job opportunities in the future.
It has been five years since I first started at The Winchendon School as a 14-year-old, doe-eyed freshman, but my time there extends way before that. As a child, I would attend school dinners in the old dining hall (now called Trustees Hall) with the Chretien family. I remember sitting, eating french fries and giggling with my friend while being completely in awe of the tables full of lively hockey players. We were always running around campus, climbing trees, and sledding on the golf course hill. Back then I had no idea that I would even attend The Winchendon School, nor did I understand quite the impact it would have on my life. Once my older siblings, Marc F’12, Olivia F’14, Peter F’14 and Emma F’16 all began school at The Winch, I knew I wanted to come here too. Marc had already graduated by the time I was a freshman, but I was able to attend school for one year with Peter and Livvy and two years with my sister Emma. I looked up to my older siblings as role models during my years at The Winch and I saw the legacy they left once they graduated. It was a legacy of kindness, humor, and friendship and I wanted this legacy to become my own. I am excited to see my younger sister begin her journey as a freshman at The Winchendon School next year. I know she will continue the Frushell legacy while exploring her passions and interests and create her own unique mark on the community.
Though it feels peculiar and sentimental to return to The Winchendon School campus as an alumna and even more so as an employee, my summer working as an intern in the admissions department proved that my high school is still the same familiar place that nurtured me into the adult I am today. So much has happened since I graduated in 2017; not only in my own life but also at The Winchendon School and I am overcome by a feeling of pride each time I return to campus. Change has always made me uncomfortable and frankly a little scared, but I have always admired and appreciated The Winchendon School’s ability to honor tradition and preserve all the things that make “The WInch” the school I know and love while encouraging change and progress in a positive direction. I am sure I will return to campus again soon for an alumni event, a sports game or just for a visit, but until then I will keep my high school memories close in my heart and live vicariously and nostalgically (and a little jealously) through my younger sister.