Many Colleges, Universities, and Boarding schools spend their first week of the academic year gathering the students for an “Orientation” experience. Most of these schools offer some sort of outdoor adventure/expedition as part of that orientation. Here at Hyde, we are extremely fortunate to have our North Campus as a base for our Orientation. Our North Campus, Lennox Outdoor Leadership Center (LOLC), boasts one square mile of terrain right in the middle of one of the state's most iconic wilderness preservations and recreation areas. The LOLC has 6 maintained campsites right on Flagstaff Lake, 20 canoes, and all the gear for students to borrow. The campus also has 6 yurts and a main lodge to accommodate educating, cooking, and sleeping for larger groups.
Hyde’s North Campus Orientation trip is focused on giving each discovery group a chance to bond through unplugging from technology, trying new things, and having group discussions called “seminars”. We divided the student body by Discovery Groups into two different trips and although the first trip experienced some rain, this year’s two trips were a huge success. They tried new things like canoeing and hiking and cooking over a fire. For many, this was their first time even camping! Above all, students had the opportunity to slow down and just be with each other. We all might have had struggles not being attached to our phones, but the laughter and conversations were a clear sign that sometimes unplugging helps us connect.
Megan-Mack Nicholson, Director of Outdoor Education