The Taft School Enrolls Largest Student Body Ever

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Taft received an unprecedented number of inquiries and saw a 20% increase in applicants - a total of 1575 applications for fewer than 200 spots. In addition, the school distributed a record amount of financial aid, $6.5 million, to families.

11th Grader Charlie Garcia Helps a New Student Move In

Local students will be joined by teenagers from all over the globe. Their intellectual drive and diverse talents will light up our classrooms, performance halls, and playing fields.

The Taft School welcomes a diverse and talented group of new students and their parents to the community this academic year. Local students from Watertown, Waterbury and around Connecticut will meet peers from across the country and globe.

A total of 192 new students arrived on campus this week hailing from 30 countries and 33 states. Students come to Taft from far-off places, including Afghanistan, Botswana, and China. The diverse new group, 25% of whom are students of color, includes a world-class tap dancer from Switzerland, a singer from Guatemala who has already produced a CD, and a girl who has been named as one of Vietnam’s top 100 future leaders. In addition, top-notch local students include a Waterbury girl originally from Russia, another with a black belt in karate, and a star basketball player.

"This promises to be an exciting year at Taft," says Director of Admissions Peter Frew. "Local students will be joined by teenagers from all over the globe. Their intellectual drive and diverse talents will light up our classrooms, performance halls, and playing fields."

Taft received an unprecedented number of inquiries and saw a 20% increase in applicants - a total of 1575 applications for fewer than 200 spots. In addition, the school distributed a record amount of financial aid, $6.5 million, to families. This means that 37% of Taft students receive monetary assistance to attend Taft this year. Interestingly, the total number of students at the school – 588 - is determined simply by the number of seats available in the auditorium, in order to accommodate the entire school for assemblies.

In his welcoming remarks, Taft Headmaster Willy MacMullen welcomed students to the “warm, friendly, spirited” place that is Taft and highlighted the school’s five core values - dedication to service, respect for each other, resilience in the face of disappointment, excellence, and integrity. To read Mr. MacMullen’s full remarks, visit: http://www.taftschool.org/pr/headmasterswelcome2010.pdf.

In addition to a new crop of students, there are 14 teachers joining the faculty this fall. Among them, they have earned 7 master's degrees, an MBA and a law degree from universities around the country, including Middlebury, NYU, Cornell, Harvard, Dartmouth, UCLA, Wesleyan, Columbia and Stanford.

Taft is an independent boarding and day school for 588 boys and girls in grades nine through post graduate. Founded in 1890 by Horace Dutton Taft, younger brother of President William Howard Taft, the school moved to Watertown in 1893. More than a century later, its motto of service—Not to be served but to serve—remains central to the school’s mission today.

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Maggie Dietrich
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