Born in 2000, I started at USM in junior kindergarten—a member of the class of 2019. We have a great class and, for those of us who are going all the way through, a common experience: construction. Yes, we have the honor of living through renovations to both the Lower School and the Upper School, and each time we got to use and enjoy the finished product, if only for a single year. Of course, we had nothing to do with the actual timing, but I find it interesting that our class will make USM history in this peculiar way.
Back in kindergarten, I had an interest in earth-moving equipment. So, when excavation began for the new Lower School in the spring of my 2nd grade year, I was fascinated by the spectacle. Our own personal construction site. As the concrete was poured for the foundation and the structures framed out, a building began to take shape. Ms. [Deborah] Duecker was my 2nd-grade teacher and, at the time, her classroom was the smallest in the school. The transformation of her room, from small and cramped into one with high ceilings, large windows, and a plenty of space to move around, was not lost on me or my classmates.
I enjoyed the new building for 4th grade, and particularly enjoyed the Marion and Verne Read Gymnasium in close proximity to our classroom. No more walking through the quiet zone to get to P.E. The next year, I was off to Middle School, and excited to experience the newly-renovated spaces there.
Flash forward to the spring of 10th grade, and here we go again. Construction begins. I notice different things this time. The staging area takes up a lot of parking spots, which is significant, seeing as many of us drive to school now. There’s a time-lapse video with drone footage. Fundraising is an ongoing process, and it has its own name—Our Common Bond. Renovations to the Virginia Henes Young Theatre were finished ahead of schedule, and I enjoyed seeing my sister in “A Chorus Line”—the first production in the new space. Everything else finishes over the summer. So, history will repeat itself next fall when my peers and I enter all the amazing new areas and start making them our own. But only for a year. Then we graduate and continue on our own journeys, taking the memories we made in the new spaces with us, one of our common bonds.
By Jack Glusman ’19