' WMA was just the place where I could be my nerdy, outspoken, daydreaming self ’

“Our students are diverse—not just in where they come from, but in their perspectives, their strengths, their challenges, their priorities, their hopes, their fears, their dreams.”
—SoMMER MAHoNEy ’11

few months ago, I was eating dinner in a restaurant in Rabat with five of
my students. As we were laughing and talking, I got up to check my phone outside and noticed, for the first time, that there was a table for the adults on the trip. The other faculty leaders from other schools were sitting together with our tour guides—and I hadn’t noticed. Should I switch tables? I felt a twinge in my gut. I didn’t want to switch tables ... I wanted to sit with my kids.
And I wanted to sit with my students because, let’s be honest: Wilbraham & Monson Academy students are really good conversationalists. They’re funny, but never crude or mean; they’re insightful without being pedantic; they’re curious, but not overbearing; and they’re genuinely interested in people and their stories. I’d prefer to share a meal with a WMA kid than pretty much any other adult that I’ve ever met.
I’ve been a Titan for 12 years now, almost halfofmylife.WhenIwas14,Iwasoneofthe last “Bicentennial Scholars” and the first of the Global Scholars. The generosity of this school and community have shaped me in both predictable and subtle ways, and I am grateful for everything I’ve learned here—including the things I’ve yet
to discover about this school, and about myself.
As a child, I didn’t know anyone who loved to read as much as I did. Literally. I did not know anyone else. I thought that when Young
Adult authors wrote about “bookish” characters they were pandering to me. I identified with Hermione Granger from “Harry Potter” because she was the “smart one” and I was the smart “one.”