Kathleen Elkins '10
Published October, 2018
I graduated from Woodlawn in 2010 with one other classmate. Yes, you read that correctly - there were just two of us. (photo above, 2010)
We were the first graduating class and a bit of an experiment. Woodlawn essentially built new curriculums for us as we progressed through 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th grades. The school took a chance on us - and we, in a way, took a chance on it - and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Here are a few reasons why:
- You can’t beat the academics. As a student at Woodlawn, I always had a feeling that the school work was tough: We were held to a very high standard and expected to be prepared, thorough and analytical in whatever assignment we were working on.
But it wasn’t until I went to college at one of the most competitive liberal arts schools in the nation when I truly appreciated Woodlawn’s academic rigor. Woodlawn not only helped me get into Williams College, but it prepared me for the fast-paced and challenging academic setting I would face during my four years at Williams.
- I genuinely loved going to school every day. I am an anomaly among my college friends in that I actually enjoyed high school. Woodlawn was a place that I wanted to go to every day. That’s a testament to the teachers, who care about the students and find ways to make learning fun, and to the students, who not only are your closest friends, but those who push you to be the best person you can be.
- I am a strong, independent woman and comfortable in my own skin because of Woodlawn. While I didn’t fully realize it as a high schooler, Woodlawn was teaching me so much more than how to solve for “x” and analyze Dickinson: Woodlawn taught me how to treat and better serve my community, how to speak up and find my voice, and perhaps most impactful to me, how to be comfortable in my own skin.
At Woodlawn, you’re encouraged to be yourself. At Woodlawn, being different and unique is actually cool. And growing up in that type of environment instilled in me a level of confidence that has been crucial to my success beyond the classroom. Woodlawn shaped who I am today: a confident woman living independently in New York City and pursuing a career I feel passionately about.
Kathleen is currently a reporter for CNBC in New York City. She graduated from Williams College in 2014 with a BA in Spanish and three Division III National Tennis Team Titles.