Small School, Large Personal Growth


Rishi Verma, School staff

As I sit at my desk, preparing to write my last column for the alcove, I can’t help but feel nostalgic. Over the past four years, I have had the privilege of being a part of the community that exists within our small private school. Through the highs and lows, it’s the people I’ve met, the connections I’ve made, and the lessons I’ve learned that have truly shaped my experience.

The small class sizes at Greenhills have allowed for a more personalized education experience. With fewer students in each class, teachers have the opportunity to give more attention to each student. They can provide feedback, answer questions, and offer support when needed. It also allows for conversations that you might not have otherwise as well as a more in depth approach to learning and school which has allowed me to discover passions as well as meaningful relationships with teachers.

One of those passions has been journalism. When I joined the school’s newspaper as a junior, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. There was a new teacher: Dr. Lund, we were bringing back an actual print newspaper, and none of us knew anything about journalism. We struggled a lot at first, learning how to take pictures, interview properly, and how could anyone forget the rule of thirds. Now looking back at it 4 semesters later, we grew with Dr. Lund and it feels like a well oiled machine at this point. Our small size meant that we had to be creative with our coverage, but it also meant that our stories had a more significant impact. Over time, we’ve gotten better at finding stories that matter and putting together a nice looking paper. Now, when we report on a school event, it is meaningful to our readers because they know the people involved and over time, the alcove has gained credibility. When we wrote about a controversial issue, it sparked conversations and debates among our community.

Working on the school newspaper has been a highlight of my high school experience. It’s given me the chance to hone my writing skills, work collaboratively with my peers, and learn about the power of the media. It’s also provided me with some unforgettable memories. I’ll never forget staying up late with the team, putting the finishing touches on an issue, scrambling to get a last-minute interview before a deadline, or getting lost in conversation about the Murdaugh trial with Dr. Lund.

Beyond the newspaper, my time at Greenhills has been filled with other meaningful experiences. I’ve participated in sports teams, taken on leadership roles in student organizations, and volunteered in the local community. All of these activities have been made more fulfilling because of the strong relationships I’ve formed with my fellow students and teachers.

Of course, attending a small private school isn’t without its challenges. The limited resources available can sometimes feel stifling, particularly when it comes to extracurricular activities. However, I’ve found that this has only encouraged us to be more creative and resourceful. When we wanted to start a new club, we had to be strategic about how we allocated our time and resources. When we wanted to put on a school event, we had to be scrappy and find ways to make it work. These challenges have taught me valuable lessons about perseverance, ingenuity, and teamwork.

As I prepare to graduate from Greenhills, I know that the experiences and friendships I’ve gained here will stay with me forever. I’m grateful for the tight-knit community, the dedicated faculty, and the unique opportunities that have been available to me. While some may see attending a small private school as limiting, I have come to appreciate the many benefits that come with it. I encourage my fellow students to cherish the relationships and experiences they have here and to never forget the value of our small school community. And to the faculty and staff at Greenhills, thank you for your unwavering support and guidance. It’s been an honor.