One of my favorite times of the school year is the window of time right before winter break. I love the traditions of the Young Alumnae Ice Cream Social, advisory holiday parties, and Ellis Idol, our annual Upper School talent show. During this time, I’m sure to see recent graduates walking through the hallways, and their comfort in and familiarity with the Upper School makes it appear as if they never left.
During these visits, I get to hear all of the usual college feedback about workload, roommate dynamics, and independent living. They often reminisce fondly about their time at Ellis and the confidence that they gained from their all-girls experience.
Year after year, our alums report on their preparedness for the college workload; they are well-equipped to manage their time, they are adept at writing papers, and they feel at ease seeking out professors during office hours. Students often seek out smaller communities within their larger college campuses, whether that means pledging a sorority, joining a club, or playing on a sports team. A recent study released by the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools entitled Fostering Academic and Social Engagement: An Investigation into the Effects of All-Girls Education in the Transition to University confirms what we hear from our alums. As identified in the research, compared to their co-educated peers, our students find that they “have stronger academic skills, are more academically engaged, express stronger community involvement, and exhibit increased political engagement.” Both anecdotally and as evidenced by their many accomplishments, our graduates confirm these findings, and we are so proud of the ways in which they represent Ellis in their college communities and beyond.