Summer programs, generally taken one or two summers prior to enrollment, enable parents and students to get a taste of the boarding school experience.
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Mount Hermon, Massachusetts, USA view map
Co-Ed, No Religious Affiliation
An NMH education is rigorous, relevant, and taught by faculty who happily devote an extraordinary amount of time and energy to fostering their students’ success. Classes are small and extended to allow students to explore subjects in greater depth. Students take three major college-preparatory courses each semester—six per year. We combine the traditional demands of a highly challenging curriculum with our commitment to be flexible in meeting the evolving individual interests and needs of each student. NMH focuses on the whole student; our goal is to provide education for the head, heart and hand.
To that end, the school offers an extensive array of activities to complement what goes on inside the classroom. Students may choose from dozens of sports teams, performing arts ensembles and affinity groups and clubs. They may elect to study abroad; volunteer in outreach activities, both on and off campus; or help run the school’s working farm, which began operating when the school was founded in 1879. Each student participates in the school’s work program by holding down a campus job for four hours a week, which could mean leading tours of the campus for visitors, caring for animals on the farm, or a variety of other responsibilities. All this helps students stay invested in the NMH community.
NMH is located near Northampton, Massachusetts, close to the Vermont and New Hampshire borders. Boston lies two hours east; New York City is less than four hours south. From the bucolic campus, students look out over rolling wooded hills; looking in, they see the state-of-the-art facilities in which they learn and live.
Northfield Mount Hermon is a different kind of place. It’s a place that has no preconceived notion of who students ought to be, but does have great expectations of what they can do.
NMH is a world where students can learn to make cheddar cheese, do multivariable calculus, study Buddhism, play lacrosse, chart planetary motion and improvise jazz. At NMH, students are academically challenged, socially engaged and constantly surprised by both themselves and the world.
One Lamplighter Way, Mount Hermon, Massachusetts, USA
Director of Admission:
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Summary: At Northfield Mount Hermon, we like to say that we educate the head, heart, and hand. Our academic program is both whole and wholesome: it pushes you to explore your intellectual boundaries, awakens you to the needs and opportunities of the world, and prepares you for a more meaningful life.
Our teachers are the heart of the NMH experience. As credentialed scholars, they’re the equal of any boarding school faculty in the country. As dedicated, passionate educators, they have no equal. They’ll know how to inspire you, nurture you, and push you to excel.
Our College Model Academic Program (CMAP) not only helps teachers provide the richest possible educational experience, it also gives you a glimpse of what college will look like. By taking three major courses each semester, you'll spend more time in class with your teachers, which allows for deeper discussion and hands-on projects and increases your understanding of the course material.
Our wide range of courses in all our academic departments are tough, fascinating, meaningful, and yes, often downright fun. Combined with our informed, personal college counseling, an NMH education will not only prepare you for college, it will also challenge you to broaden your view of the world while ever refining your image of yourself.
Of course, the classroom is just the beginning at NMH. Our international programs can take you to study Spanish in Uruguay or literature in Ireland. Our working farm, is a living laboratory where you can conduct college-level experiments in plant biology and soil ecology, learn to make lavender soap and maple syrup, and grow organic vegetables for the dining hall. You can dig deeper into your favorite subjects through student organizations like Model UN and the Math Club, or get creative in the amazing new Rhodes Arts Center.
Department Director: Ellen Turner
Average Class Size: 12
Full Time Teachers: 95
Teachers Holding Advanced Degrees: 66.00%
Student/Teacher Ratio: 6:1
Summer Programs Offered: Offered
Number of AP Courses Offered: 24
Summary: Daily life at NMH includes classes, homework, sports practices and games, performing arts rehearsals, "workjob", and extracurricular activities. It's a busy schedule, but all those activities contribute to the self-discovery that each student is engaged in. And every individual student journey is part of a whole—a vibrant community of teenagers and adults living, learning, and working together.
Each NMH student has a constellation of at least a dozen adults supporting his or her growth—we call it the Partnership of Twelve. Classroom teachers, coaches, deans, advisors, workjob supervisors, and dorm parents, these adults work together to guide students in their academic, social, and athletic lives.
And those lives typically start in the dorms. Dorms are more than the places students lay their heads at night; each one is a vital social hub and a welcome home base. Day students are assigned specific dorms, too; they frequently spend the night on weekends.
Eating at NMH is pretty out of the ordinary: There's stir-fry Tuesdays, Mexican Thursdays, and the soft-serve ice cream machine that uses NMH farm milk. Mmmm. It's a good thing the dining hall is open almost all day for grazing!
Beyond food and shelter, students discover that everything they need to lead a healthy, productive life is close at hand—whether that's a fun weekend activity, a volunteer gig, a spiritual practice, or simply health and wellness resources.
Department Director: Nicole Hager
Number of Dorms: 15
Average Students Per Dorm: 36
No. of Girls Dorms: 7
No. of Boys Dorms: 8
Dress Code: Casual
Summary: Welcome to NMH! You've discovered one of the most exciting, distinctive boarding schools you could hope to find. I say that with some authority, having worked in boarding schools for 14 years. When I arrived at NMH in 2002, I joined a vibrant, diverse community where individual development, community standards, and high expectations form the core of the academic and student life experience.
As dean of students, my job is to challenge and support students outside the classroom. Although classrooms provide a rich learning environment, students spend a lot of time outside the walls of our academic buildings, and we offer amazing opportunities to acquire knowledge and experience and contribute to the community through clubs, organizations, and volunteer groups.
We also have a student life curriculum that promotes self-responsibility, integrity, and moral leadership. Whether it's serving as a class officer, starting a program to raise awareness of the genocide in Darfur, or working on campus sustainability projects, students discover passions they didn't know they had and commit themselves to ideas bigger than themselves.
Many schools profess to educate the whole child. At NMH, we live and breathe our founder's motto to educate the heads, hearts, and hands of young people. I came to NMH—as perhaps you will, too—because part of the school's mission is to encourage students to live with purpose and to make a difference in the world.
Dean of Students
Clubs and Organizations
Summary: Northfield Mount Hermon’s mission is an “education for the head, heart, and hand.” But perhaps we should add the eyes, the feet, and the vocal cords to that list, because, as we see it, the arts and athletics help to make us fully realized human beings. They teach new ways to see and think about ourselves and others. Through art, we can access diverse cultures in a way that is fluid and immediate, whether it’s listening to world music, dancing a tango, or watching a foreign film, and this, in turn, promotes the sense of citizenship that is so central to NMH’s purposeful education.
The pursuit of art takes time. At NMH, we recognize that—and factor sufficient time into your schedule. Our unique scheduling system (College Model Academic Program [CMAP]) will allow you to explore any artistic opportunity that captures your interest, at no sacrifice to your studies.
In addition, NMH offers one of the broadest athletics programs among secondary schools in the country—and the really good news is, as it is with the arts, our unique scheduling system allows students to participate in sports at no sacrifice to their studies. This is all consistent with the NMH philosophy of a purposeful education, providing opportunities for students to discover and cultivate the passion that lies within them. Athletics also help to fulfill another critical element of the NMH philosophy: Citizenship. Through athletics, our students learn valuable lessons about sportsmanship, leadership, and general good behavior that they can apply to all other areas of life.
As a student-athlete, you can compete in 20 interscholastic sports on more than 60 teams that include varsity, junior varsity, and junior levels. Many teams play in the most competitive leagues in New England, so you’ll be asked to dig deeper and reach for your best, all the while working with your classmates as a team. Our experienced coaches push you and support you at the same time.
Arts Department Director: Phil Calabria
Athletics Department Director: Tom Pratt
Summary: The college counselors at NMH are familiar with an impressively wide variety of colleges and universities. We have to be. Because of our students’ diverse backgrounds and interests, it is not enough to have stock answers. We know the Ivies and we know the truly excellent state universities. We know the big-name schools and the hidden gems. We know the conservatories and the art institutes. We know traditional liberal arts colleges and we know the schools that offer both gymnastics and Arabic studies—or whatever combination of programs you are looking for.
We also help colleges get to know NMH. Our work takes us to college campuses to connect with admission officers, coaches, and professors. We bring more than 100 college representatives to our campus each year to help them more fully understand NMH. They get our school, and that helps them get you.
The college process is complex and demanding. We understand the challenges and have lots of tools to help you manage the search process and the application itself (see links below). You and your parents can use the links on our website to track your applications. You can follow us on Twitter to get timely reminders. You can read our blog to find answers to your questions.
In the end, roughly two-thirds of NMH graduates report that they have gained admission to their first- or second-choice college. They also report that, once they are there, they are extremely well-prepared. Our graduates know how to handle demanding academics. They know how to engage in a residential community. They know how to compete and how to cooperate. Yes, NMH is a college “prep” school, but our goal is not just to get you in. We want to prepare you to succeed when you get there. And you will.
Department Director: Peter Jenkins
Percentage of Graduates Who Attend College: 100.00%
Middle Percentile of SAT Scores
William R. Rhodes (Class of 1953) Chairman of Citicorp
Frank Shorter (Class of 1965) Founding chairman of US Anti-Doping Agency; TV sports commentator; earned gold medal in 1972 Olympic marathon and silver in 1976
Lawrence Ferlinghetti (Class of 1937) Poet
S. Prestley Blake (Class of 1934) Cofounder, Friendly Ice Cream
Natalie Cole (Class of 1968) Grammy Award-winning vocalist
Arn Chorn-Pond (Class of 1986) Founder of Children of War, Peacemakers, and Cambodia Master performers Program; winner of Reebok Human Rights Award
Anna Diggs Taylor (Class of 1950) Chief judge, US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan (first black woman appointed to that role)
J. Stapleton Roy (Class of 1952) Director, Kissinger Institute on China and the United States, Woodrow Wilson Center; former US ambassador to Singapore, Indonesia, and People’s Republic of China
Valerie Jarrett (Class of 1974) White House Senior Advisor and Assistant to President Barack Obama for Intergovernmental Relations and Public Liaison and head of president's panel on women and children
Buster Onley (Class of 1982) Sports Writer
Summary: NORTHFIELD MOUNT HERMON SUMMER SESSION offers programs for students wishing to enrich or accelerate their school-year education. We have a comprehensive program that has existed in various forms for more than 100 years. *** Each summer, we gather as a community to engage in academic work and to learn from each other in many ways. Our population is diverse and worldly – each summer, we typically enroll students from 35-40 different countries and 20-30 U.S. states. Our talented faculty is assisted by 35 teaching interns to provide an outstanding experience for our students. *** In 2014, we offer four programs: College Prep, Middle School, English as a Second Language, and Community Service in India. Our College Prep Program is unique in that students engage in study of one subject and can complete the equivalent of a year-long course, and possibly earn credit, in just five weeks. ESL students take one major course, while Middle School students enroll in two courses. In addition to opportunities to learn here on campus, students may choose to experience the fun and delight of teaching young children as part of our program in India. *** Our goal is to provide a valuable, life-changing experience for each student who joins us. For some, NMH Summer Session provides their first taste of a rigorous academic experience and challenges them to a new level. Other students use their summer here as an opportunity to further build academic skills, advance in their coursework, and prepare for college. *** Our exceptional student diversity ensures that everyone leaves with new friends from all over the world. One of the measures of our success each year is how difficult it is for so many of the students to leave at the end of the summer – they build a powerful connection to our summer community and make lifelong friends.
Department Director: Gregory Leeds
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