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My GA Journey - Addison Campbell '19

My name is Addy Campbell and I’m a senior here at GA. I started my journey at GA as an unsure fifth grader; transferring to GA was one of the first significant changes in my life, and I was nervous. Super nervous. But with the encouragement of my parents, especially my dad as a graduate of the class of ’88, I took the faithful steps across the Quad through the front doors of the Lower School in early September 2011. Flash forward fours years through my journey through Fifth grade and Middle school; while of course there were some small bumps along the road, I had an absolute blast. I was excited about learning new things, I participated in countless extracurricular and after school sports, and I truly felt like one of the busiest middle schoolers of all time. I loved it. As I was faced with the new, kind of scary, beginning of starting high school, I knew that I wanted to take advantage of all of the opportunities that my new high school life would throw at me. From sports teams, CSO, and even semi and prom; I couldn’t wait.

When looking back on my high school career, one of the things that I’d say defined me was athletics. One of my absolute favorite things is being a part of a team.  In high school I was a member of the field hockey team, swim team, rowing team, and cross-country team. I owe so much to these sports; my life-long friends, amazing relationships with coaches, and developing a strong work ethic that I will take with me for the rest of my life.  Highlights from these sports include coming to campus in late August for preseason to enjoy the last summer days with my team, traveling to Bermuda with the swim team for a training trip, and enjoying countless bright spring days on the river. Getting the opportunity to meet so many more people and have these experiences enhanced my time here in way that I can’t thank them enough.  A time when I stepped out of my comfort zone was when I joined the Cross-country my senior year. Although uncommon for a senior to join a new sport, especially if that sport revolves around running constantly, I did it anyway.  The team and coach instantly welcomed me with open arms and I looked forward to spending time with them and slowly-but-surely get better at running everyday. XC also gave me the opportunity to compete in GA/PC day, and crossing the finish line with my teammates I was filled with such pride that I was a part of this community.

Although I’ve talked a lot about sports, but as I’ve gone through high school I have learned how to balance my time for these extracurricular with my academics and music interests. One of my most challenging courses has been Honors French as much as I love the language and culture that comes with it, it’s not something that I excel and although I could’ve dropped down to a lower level, this class has been together since 6th grade, which means this year is our seventh year of learning French together! This is why it was so important to me to keep up with the fast pace of the class. It was a lot at first, but as the years have passed, I have learned how to reach out to my teachers and friends for help in order to succeed. Just this past week my French class and our teacher traveled to Philadelphia to visit the Barnes foundation and enjoy a French-inspired meal. That’s an example of why I love GA so much; The close bonds that are created with the teacher and students in the classroom.

As I move into the next chapter of my future I’m going to miss the warm and welcoming feeling I get walking into school every morning. The community here at GA is so strong and I will always cherish the friendships and bonds that I’ve made here. And although I am leaving next year, I will take this strong sense of community with me wherever I go.