I feel a mix of sadness, relief, excitement, and gratitude as I begin writing this post. For the past four years - my first four years at Potomac - I have had the privilege of serving as an advisor to a group of Upper Schoolers. They will be graduating in less than two months, after four years that seem to have flown by. Out of the 12 seniors I have in my Advisory, six of them have been with me since their first day of 9th grade. My, how we have all grown together!
Some of my fondest memories of my advisees include our time together on various service trips. We've gone to a nearby park to pull weeds and invasive species, we've cleaned and moved lots of donated furniture and items, and we have spent many hours playing with young children at different day cares, preschools, and Head Start programs. It has been fun to witness my advisees interact with others and step out of their comfort zone in order to help those in need. We've also had poignant moments of learning together as a group. At one facility where we were cleaning donations and moving furniture, our host immediately divided the group into males and females. The males were expected to do much of the moving, and the females were asked to clean and dust items. It was a good learning lesson, as while our Potomac community emphasizes equity and works actively to break down gender stereotypes, other people may not be quite as far along in that respect.
In addition to spending time together on off campus service trips, the depth of my relationship with my advisees has grown through our weekly Advisory meetings. Sometimes these meetings will be a time to relax. We might go out to the Quad and soak in the nice weather or pull out Apples to Apples for some quality board game time. At other times, our Advisory may need to address an important issue. Our discussions have ranged from summer plans to the school's dress code policy to politics and the Black Lives Matter movement. Sharing ideas and differing perspectives has forced each of us to reconsider our own opinions, something that I hope will stay with each of my advisees after they leave Potomac.It has been a joy and honor to watch my advisees grow physically, academically, emotionally, and socially. They have become better students, friends, thinkers, and writers, and it has been a privilege to walk alongside them in their years of growth here at Potomac. While I am sad to see them go, I am so excited for the new things they will discover and accomplish in the next stage of their lives. I'm honored to have been a part of their time at Potomac, and I feel lucky to have had a close glimpse into their lives as they have grown.