Some Students Will Travel to Italy and South Carolina During Spring Break, Others to Train for Upcoming Athletic Season

As Spring Break draws near, many Andover students are finalizing their plans for the holiday. While many students will be staying at home or vacationing with their families, others will be participating in music, community service, and sports excursions across the country and even overseas. The Academy Cantata Choir and Chamber Orchestra have a yearly tradition of touring during Spring Break. This year they will be traveling to Italy under the direction of Mr. William Thomas from March 10-22. In the past two years, the two music ensembles have traveled to Bermuda and Puerto Rico. Cantata and the Chamber Orchestra will be performing in Venice, Rome, Amalfi and the Vatican. Aside from giving concerts, the students will also be able to sightsee such landmarks as the Piazza San Marco in Venice, the Duomo Cathedral of Florence, the Coliseum and the Sistine Chapel. Chris Li ’07, a four-year Cantata member said, “As much as I like sleeping in and watching cartoons at home, I’ve got all summer to do that. It’s not so often that you can travel with your friends.” He continued, “It’s also one of the things I really like about Phillips Academy: a lot of the people that I’m going with will know a lot of these places, which might make for a much more enlightening experience than if I went alone.” Another activity that will be taking place this year is the Alternative Spring Break trip, which has been sponsored by the Community Service Office since 1996. From March 10-18, student volunteers and approximately eight faculty members will travel to the Sea Islands off the coast of South Carolina. There they will help residents of Johns Island, many of whom are elderly or low-income families, to construct and refurbish their homes. The Spring Break community service project is done in collaboration with a local organization called Rural Mission, Inc. Rural Mission is an ecumenical, not-for-profit organization that provides human services to Sea Island families and migrant farm workers. This year, 35 students will be attending the South Carolina community service project, narrowed down from an application pool of about 60 students. One of the participants of the community service project, Mary Doyle ’08, said, “I haven’t traveled to this part of the South before, and I can’t wait to see [the area] and meet the people of St. John’s. And at the risk of sounding cliché, I do want to make a difference and help make their daily lives a bit easier.” In addition, several Andover sports teams will be traveling across the country to train for the upcoming spring sports season. The Girls’ Lacrosse team will be heading to Florida for the second time to play at the Disney Sports Complex against lacrosse teams from other prep schools, such as Hotchkiss. Last year, the team trained in Cocoa Beach, Florida. Priority was given to Varsity and then Junior Varsity players, and Juniors were not allowed to participate. Organized by Co-Captains Annie Boylan ‘07 and Carolyn Pollard ’07, the goal of the trip will be to practice before lacrosse season begins to train for better competition and bond as a team. Pollard said, “The main thing I hope to accomplish is to have a cohesive team who can work well together. Sometimes it doesn’t matter if each person is really skilled or not, but if the team can understand each other and how they work on the field, that can be more important. The bonding will help there.” Nine members from last year’s Girls Varsity Crew team will also be traveling to San Francisco, California to train for the impending season. Tori Brophey ’08 said, “Our main goal is to achieve a higher fitness level, but we plan to work on technique as well. Also, we just wanted to be able to go out on the water a little earlier.” Apart from these organized trips, most students plan on spending their spring vacation at home, relaxing or studying for impending AP exams. Claire King ’10 said, “I will be spending 10 days in Hawaii with my family. I am so excited to just relax and do nothing.”