Nicole Vanasse '20 leads Big Blue to another impressive showing.
An integral member of the Upper School’s Administrative Team, she is deeply committed to fostering an unparalleled academic experience at Pingry, one that nurtures the energy, talent, and intellect of its older students, while supporting the growth and professionalism of its devoted faculty. On the brink of great change and adventure, Upper School students are given a safe yet challenging launching pad from which to spring into college and beyond.
Upper School: a time dedicated to developing responsible global citizens and leaders. At Pingry, students are challenged and encouraged to strive for academic and personal excellence. Here, we emphasize the importance of leadership, teamwork, global awareness, comfort with difference and disagreement, and -- above all -- character and honor. Here, our commitment to excellence in education and character, our students’ energy and intellect, and our faculty’s talent and dedication are all in play.
Through our academic curriculum, we prepare students to perform at the highest level in college and to be leaders in their community. At Pingry, learning takes place in the classroom as well as through individual research, participation in group discussions, and one-on-one faculty conferences that encourage independent thinking and innovative problem solving.
Beyond academics, we encourage students to participate in athletics, arts, and clubs in order to explore new interests and hone existing talents. Our Upper School students are also active members of their communities, donating thousands of hours to community service projects each year -- hours beyond the minimum 10 required of each student per year. Whether a student is interested in the sciences, sports, music, photography, writing, drama, student government, service, diverse cultures – or all of the above – there are opportunities to test the waters or hone existing skills and interests at Pingry.
The Upper School’s wealth of opportunities for self-exploration and intellectual growth foster a lifelong commitment to learning, personal growth, and service, cultivating the initiative and independence essential for students to reach their potential…at Pingry and beyond.
Upper School Schedule
Our Upper School curriculum is designed to provide an intellectually engaging, comprehensive, and stimulating academic program that prepares students to perform at the highest level in college as well as to lead and serve honorably in the larger community. Students are encouraged to think and perform independently and to solve problems in innovative ways through group discussion, one-on-one conferences with faculty, and individual work. Through their course work, students have the opportunity to develop an informed, nuanced picture of the world as viewed through the various disciplines and diverse lenses of perspective; to practice and hone their powers of higher-order thinking and analysis; to refine their skills of lucid, persuasive written and oral communication; to exercise and expand their creative imagination; and to establish a lifelong passion for learning.
In addition to the core academic curriculum, students must take courses in health and fitness to promote the wellness and mind/body integration essential to adolescent development. Courses in the arts are also required to develop appreciation for and facility in the creative, intuitive dimension of life as well as the analytic. Information literacy skills - the ability to locate, evaluate, and use information critically - are taught in the context of research assignments in the various disciplines and, in every instance, the use of lucid, persuasive written and oral communications is encouraged.
For Pingry's full Upper School Curriculum Guide, see the course offerings navigation below. Or, access our summary of Upper School courses by Department.
Sample Course Offerings:
- The Ethical Dilemma: An exploration of the ways in which writers have tried to make sense of the world by portraying ethical people searching for guidelines in an unethical world.
- China and Modern East Asia: A history course examining the development of East Asian history and culture from the mid-nineteenth century to the present day, with a particular emphasis on China and Japan.
- Advanced Topics in Computer Science: A project-based course on data structures and program design.
- Movement for Actors: A course focusing on an actor’s daily warm-up, including centering exercises, body isolations, rhythmic movements, locomotor exercises through space, and relaxation work.
- AP Macroeconomics and Microeconomics: The equivalent of two semesters of college-level economics, this course covers macroeconomic principles such as supply and demand, inflation, unemployment, and fiscal and monetary policy, as well as microeconomic topics including the nature and function of product markets, price determination, perfect and imperfect competition, efficiency, equity, stability, growth, and the role of government.