Originally published on The Magnet by Megan Jacques
MacDuffie day students were treated with an invitation to Big E and Six Flags boarding trips this year after Assistant Dean of Boarding Lucy Tew shared a form for students to sign up.
In prior years, due to concerns around how the students would pay for the trips, day students were excluded from boarding trips. Since boarding students pay a different activity fee compared to the day students, the big issue with enacting this plan was ensuring that the day students would not break the bank to join their boarder friends, while still having these students pay for the activities they are attending.
The decision to allow day students to join the boarding trips is “something that [the boarding department] had been talking about for a while,” said Tew.
“We opened things up to day students, and we let them choose. It’s like an a la carte menu, you get to pick. We have space on a trip, we let you sign up, and then we give you the information on what you pay, if you pay, and who you give it to,” said Tew.
Dean of Boarding Dina Lyman added that, “Some of it has to do with vehicles. Such as, do we use a five star bus or do we use our own? That is why the sign up is so important. Because that is what tells us what vehicle to use. If we have a lot of students sign up, we have to order a larger bus.”
The new invite is not strictly limited to boarding trips that go off campus. Over the weekend of October 26th, day students were invited to attend the haunted house run by the boarding department on Saturday Evening.
“We haven’t been able to open it up before, which we are really excited about,” Tew said.
The trips that day students are invited to are not strictly local trips that only last only a few hours. Day students are invited to all trips, such as those to New York City. However, day students were not invited to the Salem trip due to overwhelming numbers from the boarding population.
The boarding students this year have shown high interest in the boarding trips, which is unusual for the boarding department to see.
“And it’s awkward because now we have 50 boarders interested in a trip, where that might not have been the case a few years ago, but now we don’t have room to offer for a day student,” said Tew.
There will be more opportunities for day students to join these trips as the year goes on, but as of now the trips have been in high demand by boarders, so having room for day students is slim.
So what should you expect while on a boarding trip?
Regardless of where the trip is going, students are required to stay in a specific area. If the trip is to a bowling alley, the students are expected to stay in the bowling alley, and not wander off.
If the trip is to a larger location like Six Flags, or even a city, the same expectation applies. Although there is more room to roam, you are required to stay inside the location you are in and not leave the area for any reason.
Ms. Tew says that “the big important rule for any free time we give in a city or exploring is don’t be by yourself.” In places like Six Flags, it is less crucial as you cannot go very far without running into someone from the trip. In larger cities, it is important to stay with students who have a cell phone and can contact the duty phone if necessary.
What the boarding department expects from any student on these trips is that everyone will be respectful and continue to uphold the values that the school expects from everyone.
“What I’m really looking forward to is having the day students come in and have the experience of going out be this special thing for the borders because ‘oh, it’s not the same group of people. Now my day friends are here’,” said Tew.
“Boarding interactions is one of my favorite things and I really like seeing that happen on these trips. So I am really looking forward to that kind of community building between the boarding and our day communities, because it’s nice to have more people on campus over the weekend.”