This is an informal e-communication from the Hyde-Bath campus, intended to share highlights, signs of growth, issues that are being addressed, and moments of joy. Its purpose is to bring the Hyde-Bath parents and the larger community into the school culture.
James Roman Basketball Tournament
The gym came alive this week with the 25th annual James Roman Tournament, an athletic contest with six basketball teams invited from New England schools, including Hyde Woodstock. The tournament was created to honor one of Hyde School’s former student-athletes, who passed away during a Sunday morning pickup game of basketball in 1988. Arriving at Hyde from the Boys Club of New York, Roman was a hard worker, full of spirit and had a deep concern for others. Hyde’s Headmaster at the time, Malcolm Gauld, dug out some of Roman’s files and found an essay that James had written as a student. As a young 13-year-old far from his home, James wanted his fellow students to be friends, writing that “there should be a way everybody could know everybody.” It was disturbing to James that not many people at Hyde really knew those who didn’t live in the same dormitory. James’ basketball number was retired that year, the only time in Hyde history that has happened.
Though the Hyde fans were supportive of good basketball from the neighboring teams, the crowd was charged with excitement when the two Hyde teams faced each other on the court. The sister schools have a friendly rivalry that culminates in a President’s Cup, as well as campus pride and bragging rights. Both teams showcased excellent athletes and outstanding competitive efforts. The tournament provided a valuable opportunity for both coaches and players to prepare for a winning season.
Player Warsame Mohammed ’14 said, “Our team played our hearts out, and I couldn’t have been more proud of the Phoenix.”
Remembering James, Hyde President Malcolm Gauld spoke to the students on Friday morning. “James was a special kid – the consummate student athlete. I have to believe that he would get a kick out of what the tournament that bears his name has become.”
Fan Sean Smerczynski ’14 writes that “The tournament and Hyde team embodied the qualities that James Roman brought to the court every day.”
Special congratulations to the Hyde Woodstock Wolfpack for placing first in the tournament!
Go Phoenix and Go Wolfpack!
Hyde Leadership Society Attends Conference in Augusta
This week, the students of the Hyde Leadership Society had the exciting opportunity to attend the 3rd Annual Maine Youth Leadership Summit hosted by the Maine Youth Action Network (MYAN). The Leadership Summit was a two-day event that gathered together hundreds of Maine students in grades 7-12, who are currently working in their respective schools to create positive change. The Summit is tailored to meet the needs of all participants by providing them opportunities to build stronger teams, grow as leaders and advocates, and learn about the health & wellness issues that matter most to them. According to MYAN, the goal of the summit was for students to leave feeling “empowered, engaged, and committed to their plans for making lasting and measurable changes in their communities.” Fourteen Hyde students not only participated in the summit as attendees, but offered a presentation for other students to attend titled, “How to Talk about Tough Topics.” Often at Hyde, students engage in difficult and honest conversations about concerns they have for one another, but what about other schools in Maine? How do they approach tough topics?
In a one-hour workshop, students and faculty from way up north in Fort Kent down to Kittery came to hear what the Hyde students had to say. At first, student attendees were timid about participating, but all it took was Sean Smerczynski ’14 to break the ice by asking a young man what his thoughts were regarding a scenario he may encounter in his own school. This opened up a sea of hands in the room and elicited an energized group discussion on difficult conversations students have had to face in their own classrooms, hallways, or on sports teams. Next the students were out of their seats performing skits on how they would have difficult conversations for various situations. These situations included: “You notice your friend’s relationship with her significant other no longer seems productive, and you are concerned she is being taken advantage of, but they claim they’re in love.” Or “Your team has made a commitment to a sober season, but you know some upperclassmen are not holding themselves to this standard.” The HLS did a phenomenal job in bringing tough topics to life and engaging each attendee in an honest discussion on what it takes to have a difficult conversation with a peer. During the workshop debrief, one attendee remarked that he had taken notes in order to bring back and share the strategies with other students in his school. At the end of the workshop, the students were exchanging emails and talking about the prospect of having HLS visit their school to put on the workshop to their larger student body. Hope Stinson ’14 even remarked, “We should take HLS on the road!” And perhaps we will, because what happened in the workshop room that day embodied what it meant to be a Hyde student, and those 14 Hyde Leadership Students really made something special happen.
Peer Partnership through Mentor Program
As promised, this week was chock full of dinners and events shared between those students and faculty members involved in the Mentorship Program. The newly enrolled students are quickly acclimating to the community, and the mentors are continuously honing their leadership skills as they assist this process. A few highlights from the time spent together were as follows:
- Mentor/Mentee Pizza Dinner
The group gathered on a cold, wintery Friday night for some hot pies from a local favorite, The Cabin, and debriefed how their first couple of days had gone. Each mentor and mentee shared with the group, giving a Hyde introduction, as well as answering one of the following questions: How did you get here, and where are you trying to go in life? What has been one of your greatest achievements? What has been one of your greatest challenges, and how have you worked at overcoming it? Corey Smit ’17 showed an immense amount of courage and concern for his peers as he led the charge in both sharing his own personal story, as well as facilitating the discussion as a whole.
- Bowdoin vs. Tufts Men’s Ice Hockey
The mentors and mentees loaded onto a bus this past Saturday evening to catch what was sure to be an aggressive match between the Polar Bears and Jumbos at Bowdoin College’s beautiful new ice arena. This was the first live hockey game for many of us, and it did not disappoint, complete with a total of 12 goals scored (8-4 Bowdoin, and collisions occurring with mere inches of Plexiglas between the players and fans! Evan Brothers ’15 even caught a rogue puck that he quickly gave to a young local fan sitting beside our group.
- Group Challenge: Climbing the Alumni Rock
Collaboration can be learned in a variety of ways, one of which is through exercises such as rock climbing in which both the individual climbing as well as the one who belays need to be completely on the same page. The students practiced this deliberate pursuit of cohesiveness on Sunday evening, as they paired up in order to tackle the infamous Alumni Rockwall. Moments of struggle and triumph could be seen throughout the evening as these pairs fought to reach greater heights…quite literally.
Indoor Track Races in Jingle Bell 5K for Arthritis Research
On Sunday a group of Hyde Indoor Track athletes headed to Freeport to compete in the 5K Jingle Bell Run for Arthritis. Temperatures hovered in the low 30’s, but the skies were clear and sunny as our athletes were met on the starting line by almost 500 other competitors, many decked in holiday garb. The costumes ran the gamut, everything from Santa Clause and his reindeer to Christmas trees, elves, and dogs with red noses. The race is a great opportunity for Hyde to give back to the local community and share in the joy of volunteering their time and energy for a great cause.
Our athletes did very well; strong finishes for our female athletes included Wang Xi ’14 who finished 53rd overall, Julia Jackson ’14 who finished 66th overall, Avery Booth ’15 who finished 114th, and Jill Tolman who finished 121st. For our male competitors, Max Kaplan ’15finished 43rd, Ben Mooney ’16 41st, Griffin Palola-Harriman ’14 39th, Richard Liu ’14 15th, and an amazing 5th place finish by Alex Greenberg ’15.
Not to Miss