The Record is a student-run bi-weekly print newspaper with daily digital presence on pressing issues and events inside the Hotchkiss community and around the globe.

The Hotchkiss Record

The Record is a student-run bi-weekly print newspaper with daily digital presence on pressing issues and events inside the Hotchkiss community and around the globe.

The Hotchkiss Record

The Record is a student-run bi-weekly print newspaper with daily digital presence on pressing issues and events inside the Hotchkiss community and around the globe.

The Hotchkiss Record

Seniors Look Back

Chris Mitchell

Before arriving on campus in 2020 to begin our Prep year, the Class of 2024 had two competing group chats, each with the most random list of people you’ll probably ever see. I loved it. I came to campus having already memorized names, with lots of stories to tell and a connection with nearly half of the people I’d be spending all four years of high school with.

I love Hotchkiss, the people.

In truth, I’m still trying to fall in love with Hotchkiss, the place. My time here has been plagued with more rain than sunshine. I’ve spent so much time preparing for what was to come that I often forgot I was in the middle of what I had fought and bled and begged for.

With this reflection, I immortalize my Hotchkiss: my place and my people. The people with whom I felt more free than ever to explore who I could be. The place where I learned how to make some mean stir fry and where I let people make me feel small. I will remember the beautiful and the ugly and the tasty.

Whatever you do, do not wait until the last second. For anything.

No Senior bucket lists—just a running list of things to do and to see. Meet that person, make that friend, say that odd thing if it brings you joy. The people who judge you are the ones who’ll regret it the most. Take advantage of now.


Quisha Lee

Hotchkiss made me love butterflies.

I’m not entirely sure where that love started. Maybe it was when I first heard about the butterfly effect in Prep Philosophy, or when I recognized its power in Upper Mid year.

Maybe it was when I created a butterfly sculptural book for MacLeish, or when a butterfly landed on me as I was sitting by tee box #5, admiring Lake Wononscopomuc.

Or maybe it was when I realized I resemble a butterfly because I too have undergone a metamorphosis during my time at Hotchkiss, evolving from naivety and meekness to an expressive semi-adult who uses her wings to navigate this life.

I still hold a continuous “personal identity” (as I learned from “Fundamental Questions of Philosophy” last year—thanks Dr. Thomas Fisher). The butterfly I am today is still connected to the caterpillar I once was. I’m still all the versions of myself who experienced these four years of Hotchkiss.

I’m still the Prep who arrived in late February following an online semester, unpacking in Buehler while catching glimpses of others building snowmen outside.

I’m still the Lower Mid who found analyzing poetry, devoting time to Adobe apps, and playing Ultimate to be sources of joy.

I’m still the Upper Mid who woke up at 6 a.m. to finish essays, endured a year on the top bunk in a supposed VS single, and pushed myself during swim training because the subsequent feeling of accomplishment always prevailed.

Now I’m the Senior basking in this truly fulfilling Senior spring, flowering with all the things I love.

I’m still rooted in my beginnings, because everything I was has led me to become everything I am, and I’m beyond grateful that Hotchkiss is where it all happened.


Lindsay Faveau

At times, being a day student has felt like living a double life.

During my lowerclass years, the world was riddled with Covid regulations and isolation; the idea of Hotchkiss being a “bubble” resonated with me in more ways than one. Inside the bubble, I waltzed with fellow students who never failed to impress me academically, athletically, and artistically. Throughout our sixday class week, I was nearly overstimulated with the diversity of perspectives I engaged with on campus, and became enthralled with cementing myself to the dazzling community I felt so fortunate to be a part of.

It felt routine at times to neglect moments with my family in lieu of homework or events I was desperate to attend. I floated away from the looming global politics that motivated me to be a part of something more than myself. I drifted from the hobbies that gave me creative and intellectual solace. Local friends who meant so much to me seemed further away the deeper I retreated into the bubble.

For me, maturing meant finding balance between these separate but equally important areas of my life. Now beginning to shift away from Hotchkiss and towards my unknown life as an adult, I worry about others having the same tendencies I had: summing up their lives as nothing past who and what they are now, instead of who they could and want to be.

As I leave Hotchkiss, with the near-forgotten pandemic years behind me, I hope that the incredible students I’m leaving behind won’t forget to look outside of that all-consuming bubble.

Connect with the local community beyond Scoville Gate, and look past the lush golf course at the beautiful and treacherous realities of the world.

Let our Hotchkiss experience evolve outside the community we have fostered for ourselves, and let it lead us to growth.


Boffi Lin

My colorful Moleskine notebooks have been the most constant part of my life since my first day as a Prep. As I anticipated the endless possibilities of the next four years, I made a promise to myself that I would journal every day to capture as much of Hotchkiss as I could.

Accompanied by my barely legible handwriting, mementos stick to the pages: slips of Covid PCR tests, photo booth pictures from dances, letters from home, printed orchestra programs, plane tickets, and everything in between.

Each night I reflect on and recount parts of my day in my journal, scared of missing anything. The fear of not having enough to remember about Hotchkiss has always consumed me, but after four years, I have realized that no amount of careful documentation will ever feel like enough.

I am grateful to have captured snippets of this home, portals that open each time I flip through the pages of my journals, yet Hotchkiss is so much more than a curated collection of memories in ink and paper. It is the moments in between the lines, dancing through the photos I pasted and weaving around the words I scribbled.

Seniors from last year told me that time would fly by faster than I could imagine, and they were right—despite desperately trying to memorialize every second, I couldn’t stretch out time. Not one bit.

There is a familiar comfort in reflecting and dwelling, but we must move forward eventually. One day, my stack of Moleskine notebooks might end up in a storage bin of an attic like a forgotten time capsule, collecting dust and cobwebs, but I carry with me all that is and isn’t captured in those pages—all that is Hotchkiss.


Will Trachsel

Perhaps the most valuable thing I’ve learned at Hotchkiss is the ability to search for and appreciate the small things that bring me joy.

It can be really easy to get caught up in the everyday work and stress of Hotchkiss, but it’s so important to focus on the parts that make time here memorable and exciting.

There are a lot of stressful parts of the Hotchkiss experience, but if you choose to make the frustrating things all that you think about or talk about with your friends, then that’s all that Hotchkiss will be.

Even though it can be difficult to realize sometimes, there really are so many wonderful parts of Hotchkiss, as well.

It’s important to shift your focus to those things.

I’ve enjoyed walking through Millerton with my friends on Sundays and getting ice cream even when it’s much too cold out for it. I’ve enjoyed reading on comfy chairs with a view of the lake and walking to the Ford Food Court with someone I’m just getting to know. I’ve enjoyed a million other random things that I’ll be sad to leave behind.

Staying on top of work is important and a good habit to gain, but keeping your head buried in all of the daunting and stressful parts of Hotchkiss can be just a waste of energy.

There’s so much to enjoy here in Lakeville, Connecticut if you just take some time to look for and embrace it.


Rebekah Oppenheimer

It has been both difficult and relieving to be at a boarding school since October 7, 2023, when a violent terrorist attack launched the Middle East into renewed crisis. It has felt very lonely at times, knowing that this war, constantly on my mind, is simply less relevant, less upsetting, and less close to much of the school community.

I sometimes crave the unity and solidarity that friends from home have found in their families, Jewish day schools, youth groups, or synagogues. And yet, I’m simultaneously, perhaps selfishly, grateful to be in a place that has allowed me to build a full life of commitments and fun untainted by the conflict, where support has been offered, but potentially distressing discourse hasn’t been insisted upon.

The tension between these two conflicting sentiments came to a head several days ago, in a painful conversation that the school will move past, but I know will stay with me. However, even in this challenging moment, Hotchkiss reminded me once more of the aspects of it I love most. Mr. Craig Bradley came to Hillel the next night, a moving gesture. My co-proctor sat on the floor of our hallway for over an hour with me, asking questions. She said, “I want to learn.” My teachers checked in. They listened. One week before graduating, I found community with new people.

Not every moment at Hotchkiss is easy or good. People aren’t perfect, and neither is this place. But I find that if you give our school the chance to prove itself to you, it will, time and time again. People here are smart and curious, and, more than that, they care deeply. If I have one piece of parting advice, it’s to have faith in that and not take it for granted. It’s harder to find than we might think.


Sophie Perkel

It’s funny how it takes the end of something to force you to live in the present. I’ve been told countless times to appreciate every moment and be present, but I don’t think I’d ever achieved that mindset until very recently. It has to do with time, I think.

I say this because, sitting at Elfers, writing this, staring out at a glassy Lake Wononscopomuc, my mind goes to rowing—and then I remember that rowing has ended and that I will never row on that lake again; and I feel sad about it, but I remember how I would sometimes dread going out there, how much we would practice, all for a five-minute race at NEIRA’s yesterday that didn’t even get us into the final. What was it all for? Was it a waste of time?

No—it was for each other and for that very time spent. Doing it changed something in me, made me more in tune with and connected to my body, gave me a rare and unique bond with eight other girls, and built my resilience.

The pressure to spend time “well” can undermine what life is all about. When I was an Upper Mid, I felt the need to assign a goal to time—to succeed in the college process, perhaps. Time was calculated.

As a Senior, I’ve let myself do those things that I didn’t as an Upper Mid. Going to the lake, sitting and chatting in the hallway, and going on walks have all caused me to realize that joy and pleasure are emotions that I shouldn’t be ashamed of and that I can view and treat time more sacredly. Why have I let myself do these things?

Well, I only have a finite number of days left. When I think about how I want to spend the rest of my time here, I realize that my wish is simple. I just want to remember this place as a place I am happy.

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