2021 Senior Athletic Awards

Normally reserved for the Senior Awards ceremony at the annual senior banquet held the night before commencement, the 2021 Senior Athletic Awards were announced during the Co-Curricular Coach’s Awards ceremony today in a virtual ceremony.

The following are the awards and recipients.


This plaque is presented in recognition of outstanding achievements in academics and in women’s sports.  The recipients are chosen for their accomplishments and enthusiasm in developing both their intellectual and physical beings.


Norah Dempsey ’21


Kathryn (Kate) Hagness ’21


This is an award given each year by Mr. & Mrs. F. Stillman Hyde and his family, in loving memory of Tim Hyde, who graduated from Northwood in 1962.  It is given to the hockey player who, in the opinion of the coaches, best exemplifies Tim Hyde’s love of the game and his “never quit” attitude, no matter how stiff the opposition.

Marina Alvarez ’21


Charlie Holt served as a teacher and coach at Northwood School from 1955 to 1962. After Northwood, Charlie was hockey coach at Colby College and the University of New Hampshire.  Considered one of the “true gentlemen” of the game, Charlie Holt embodied the best qualities the game has to offer.  A plaque is awarded annually by Northwood School to the members of the boys and girls hockey squads who have shown the best sportsmanship in practice and in games.

Ashlyn McGrath

Michael Leone ’21


The permanent trophy was given by the late Herbert L. Malcolm, former Headmaster of the Lake Placid School now Northwood School, and the individual plaque is awarded each year to the male and female students who, in the opinion of the faculty Athletic Committee, have shown the best sportsmanship in athletics throughout the year.  The award recognizes qualities of character that enhance the excellence of the teams on which the individuals participate and that reflect positively on Northwood as an institution during athletic competition.

Gabrielle-Catherine Cote ’21

Calil Neme Filho ’21


Mark Driscoll, Class of 1970, was the complete skier, competing in cross-country, jumping, and alpine events.  His legacy is one of extraordinary enthusiasm and dedication.  As an athlete, a student, and a student leader, Dill was one of the school’s most positively influential characters.  The school named the premier ski team award in his honor.

Benjamin (Ben) DeGirolamo ’21


This award is given to the student-athlete of the North Country who best displays Tim Smythe’s leadership and courage and who inspires their teammates to rise to any challenge.

Madison (Maddie) Kostoss ’21


The Warren Witherell Award is the top award given to a member of the soccer program. Like Mr. Witherell, the recipient of this award has consistently represented Northwood and the program in the finest manner possible as an athlete, student, community member, and leader. This player embodies the full spirit of the Northwood community and the soccer program and has consistently endeavored to improve himself while always setting the highest standard possible for his teammates and classmates to follow.

Tomas Restrepo Gaviria ’21


(All photos by Mr. Michael Aldridge)

Twenty Students Take Home Co-Curricular Awards

Twenty students received 21 awards at the annual co-curricular awards ceremony on May 19, which was held online for the second year in a row. For Northwood’s co-curricular activities and sports, the “Coach’s Award” is given to the student who characterizes the notion that there is no “I” in “team.”  Both on and off the field, rink, hill, etc., they lead by example. They are a consummate team player who goes above and beyond to make a difference for their team. Their leadership, ability to communicate with teammates and coaches are critical to the team’s success. The award is given to the student that best demonstrates the true spirit of activity throughout their season. It is provided for hard work and personal improvement and for a willingness to understand and learn to achieve one’s potential. The following students are the 2020-2021 recipients:

Rock Climbing
Haley Donatello ’21


CARE Service Award
Haley Donatello ’21


Chase Ormiston ‘21

Ellie Colby ‘21


U18 Soccer
Sebastian Green ‘22


U19 Soccer
Andrew Mazza ‘21


Boys Alpine Skiing
Wyatt Wardlaw ‘24


Girls Alpine Skiing
Audrey Higgins-Lopez ‘21


Freestyle Skiing
Maximilian Oechsner ‘21


David Phelps/Kimbal Award/ Ski Awards
Caroline Purcell ‘24


Ski Jumping
Adeleine Swanson ‘24


David Garvey ‘22


Prep Hockey (formerly Juniors)
Mark Monaco ‘21


Lars Kroes ‘21


Varsity Hockey (formerly Prep)
Ryan Cielo ‘21


Lars Kroes ‘21



Girls Hockey
Olivia McLean ‘21


Mountain Biking
Macie Eisenhart ‘23


Zach Zientko ‘21


Anja Martin ‘22


Kaiya Belisle ‘21


Rec Skiing
Eli Jean-Francois ‘21

Hillary Larsen ‘22



Congratulations to these recipients!

Cluster of Positive Cases at Northwood

The front page of the Adirondack Daily Enterprise featured a story by reporter Elizabeth Izzo.

After several rounds of negative COVID-19 tests following spring break, Northwood reported a positive case from the boys’ soccer cohort on April 25th. Following the positive case, the entire cohort was put into quarantine and tested again which resulted in identifying additional positive cases within the cohort. All the positive cases had either mild or no symptoms. The soccer cohort remained in quarantine while the rest of the student body continued in person classes.  

Following the multiple cases within the community, students were anxious about the possibility of an outbreak within other cohorts and how it would affect end of the year activities including prom and graduation. Ashlyn McGrath ‘21 said, “I wasn’t concerned to contract the virus because I had it over spring break. My only concern with all the positive cases arising was prom, graduation and the rest of the year. It’s my senior year, and I want to be able to enjoy the rest of it and have fun with all my friends.”  

While the soccer cohort and close contacts remained in quarantine, surveillance testing on Tuesday, April 27th confirmed a positive case within the girl’s hockey cohort. After receiving the news all students were placed in quarantine until the results of an all-school testing came back. The whole community was tested on Thursday, April 29thResults of that clinic revealed more positive case within the boy’s hockey cohort along with two staff members. The school remains in quarantine until a second testing is conducted and the results come back.  

As of Monday, May 3rd. 22 cases have been confirmed. The contraction of the virus is still unknown with many roots of the outbreak being possible. Nearly all of the school’s faculty is fully vaccinated, and many students have received the first vaccine. The school continues to work closely with the Essex County Health Department about the outbreak.  

In-Person Commencement is On! 

Will there be a Northwood Commencement Ceremony this year?  

That has been the question in the minds of many seniors and their families for many months, as the 2020-21 school year starts to come to an end. After abruptly leaving campus during the 2019-20 school year with news that there would be no inperson commencement due to the coronavirus pandemic, commencement festivities have been a question for school officials, students, and families.  

Many aspects of the ceremony will be like any non-pandemic year, including ringing the victory bell. (Photo by Mr. Michael Aldridge from commencement on May 14, 2016)

Early in 2021 the school announced that there would be commencement, but that seniors should expect a very different ceremony from the typical Northwood graduation. A typical Northwood graduation includes a senior banquet with graduates and their guests, along with Northwood underclass students and staffThe banquet also included awards and yearbook signing. The next day commencement ceremony would be held with again graduates, their guests, and Northwood underclassman and staff. Seniors knew that banquet was canceled, but they were uncertain about the other details about commencement, including how many guests would be allowed to attend.  

Recently Assistant Head of School, Mr. John Spear, updated the Northwood Community in a school-wide emailGraduates would be permitted to bring up to four guests, but all guests must be fully vaccinated or recently tested negative for COVID-19. School for students in grades 9-11 will end several days before graduation and will not attend commencement unless they are invited guests of a graduate. The other elements of commencement – speakers, awards, the procession/recession of graduates, ringing the victory bell, and bag pipes – will be nearly identical to a traditional Northwood graduation.  

After receiving the email, Northwood seniors shared their opinions amongst each other. Some were happy that up to 4 guests were allowed and commencement would be somewhat normal, but some were disappointed that friends and fellow classmates from other grades would not be able to attend, unless as one of the four guest per graduate. After catching up with a few seniors here are their thoughts:  

I am very grateful to have a graduation this year,” said Amelia Brady ‘21. While I wish we could have the graduation ceremony that I experienced in my first two years at Northwood, I know Northwood will do their absolute best to make it memorable. I think considering the vaccine and outdoor ceremony, this will be a very COVIDsafe event, Brady added.  

Obviously I wish everyone was able to go to grad, but with the circumstances of COVID, having my parents be able to watch me walk the stage is pretty cool!” said Lars Kroes ‘21. “It is better than nothing. My brother is graduating from Cornell this spring, and none of my family can go, so we should feel fortunate to have it in person with our parents,” added KroseThe biggest part of grad is being with our class and experiencing it together, that is the most important thing for me!” 

Humans of Northwood: Gabby Cote ‘21 

Northwood has been my home for the past 4 and a half years. Northwood has pushed me to try many new things and has prepared me for my future life. I skied raced for all my years at Northwood, and now for my spring co-curricular, I’ve gone back to dancing, which I pursued before I came to Northwood. I’m still waiting to hear back from one college for next year, but my goal in my next couple of years is to hopefully go to med school! 

As told to Mackenzie Hull ‘21. (Photo by Mr. Michael Aldridge) 

Students Share Spring Break Plans

After being at school for almost two months since our last break, many students are looking forward to spring break, where they can enjoy nice weather and relax stress-free. Students will be on break for two and half weeks starting March 25. The Mirror caught up with some students about their plans:

“I’m looking forward to spring break to get a break of the hard work we’ve all been doing in school. Especially learning online this past month, it’s nice to get a break before we can finally be in person again. While I probably won’t travel for anything other than State Championships for hockey, it’ll be nice to get outside and do things during the day I couldn’t do because of classes.”  – Rachel Hinkley ‘21 (Photo provided)

“I’m excited for break because the soccer team is traveling to Dallas, Texas, Phoenix, Arizona, and Las Vegas, Nevada during the time to play games. It nice to play so we can get down to business and I can make the most of my senior year while playing my best so I can find the best placement for college. I’m looking forward as well to spending the last weeks with my teammates before I graduate in warm weather at competitive soccer tournaments.”
– Calil Neme Filho ‘21 (Photo provided)

“I’m going to Canada for spring break with hopes that we can all come back and have graduation together.”
– Chloe Zhang ‘21 (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)

“My plans for spring break is to continue with my hockey training and getting better. I am also looking forward to going back home to Texas and spending most of my time at the lake house and on the water with my family.” – Madison Lawrence ‘23 (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)

“A friend of mine, Jazzy, is coming home with me so we plan on biking around town and going to the waterfront in Burlington and window shop. We also plan on going to the UVM track to work out every day.”
– Elise Loescher ‘21 (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)

“I am looking forward to going back home and eating some good food,”
– Eli Jean- Francois ‘21 (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)

Pandemic Presents Challenges for Northwood Admissions Office 

The Husky greets new and returning students on opening day in September 2019. (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)

A few weeks ago, the Northwood School admissions team sent out decisions to applicants to the school. In previous years, applicants and their families were strongly encouraged to visit during the application process and were invited back to campus for a revisit day before making their final decisions. The coronavirus pandemic has made it almost impossible to conduct the usual admissions programs without breaking the safety bubble of the students and staff. Admissions office staff told The Mirror that the pandemic did not seem to negatively affect the application pool or process at all. In fact, the pandemic may have made it stronger.  

The application pool was filled with many strong candidates for admission which made the admissions process highly selective and competitive this year. Jeff Miller, a senior member of the admissions team, said “The Northwood 2021-2022 applicant pool was one of the strongest in recent history, with the overall number of applications up 20 year over year.”  

Each year, Northwood becomes more well-known, driving up inquiries. The increased interest comes in part from the school’s social media platforms, word of mouth from current students and alumni, and our strong athletic teams. Miller went on to say, “The admissions committee saw a lot of depth in the applicant pool this year as well, with a high number of qualified candidates.” The deep pool of many strong candidates made admissions decisiondifficult, but it is an exciting time at Northwood 

After learning of the decision, admitted students and families were invited to a virtual revisit day. Miller said, “the admissions office is looking forward to hosting our virtual revisit days for accepted students and their families on Tuesday, March 23rd and Thursday March 25th. Normally students and families are invited to attend in person on campus shadowing a current student throughout their day. This gave students a better feel for the Northwood experience.  

Similar to all aspects of our lives since the pandemic struck a year ago, revisit days and other admissions events have gone virtual. Potential future Huskies will get to know Northwood through Zoom and Teams calls and virtual campus tours. We wish these prospective students the best of luck with this important decision and hope to see them on campus in the fall. 

Seniors Have a Night Dedicated to Fun and their Class

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With athletic teams heading in different directions between now and spring break and Northwood Seniors coming close to their graduation, Friday, February 26 was a night dedicated to fun and the class of 2021. From 8 -10 pm seniors were invited to the indoor turf field where there was food, drinks, and several fun activities set up. Some of the games included Spike Ball, Twister, Football, Can Jam, JengaCorn Hole, and Badminton.  

The night was dedicated to giving seniors the opportunity to spend time with other seniors outside their cohort and get to know new people who they would be graduating with. The pandemic has made this school year unlike any other, and Senior Class Dean Mr. Jeff Nemec, along with several Northwood seniors, decided a night for seniors in the turf would be a good way to have some fun as a class 

We had the one virtual gathering of the class of 2021 at the start of school. With fall and protocol and all the different directions plus the importance of using senior time for the college process, we never carved out a time to properly get together,” said Nemec“Led by the longer tenured seniors, Friday’s gathering was a quick effort to offer a basic senior shoutout with folks soon to be going in different directions.” 

Mr. Nemec shared some appreciation for others involved in the effort. “Thank you in particular to Ms. Christine Ashe for all of her help,” he said. 

Winter Schedule Has Fans and Foes 

Northwood students and staff have adjusted to winter schedule, which has changed this year due to the pandemic. Winter schedule at Northwood consists of Mondays and Friday’s classes starting in the morning at 8:00 am with cocurricular starting after the end of the academic day. Tuesdays through Thursdays have classes beginning at 12:30 pm with cocurricular starting in the morning before the academic day. Winter schedule has been around in one form or another at Northwood for generations and it is particularly beneficial for Snowsport athletes who can ski on the mountain without missing academics or having training cut short because of limited daylight 

Dean of Academic Affairs Ms. Noel Carmichael (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)

This year, winter schedule has been a little different for returning students with classes being an hour long every day, a change that has gotten mixed reviews 

The Mirror checked in with a couple of students to hear their opinions on the new schedule. Leah DeFilippo ‘22 said, “The winter schedule is nice, especially as a skier. I personally really like skiing in the morning, so that we can be done with training and focus on school for the rest of the day.   

Calem Luke Tommy ‘22, a soccer player from South Africa, said, “I like how the classes start later because it gives us enough time to prepare our minds for the day and classes ahead, the hourlong classes are a bit of a stretch and is not always enjoyable, but I feel as if we get a lot more work in than we did previously with the 45-minute-long classes.  

Other students have said that they are still getting used to the hourlong classes that came along with winter schedule and are not sure why they are hour long. Dean of Academic AffairsMs. Noel Carmichael, explained why class length was increased this year. “Hourlong classes three times a week allows us to maintain the same number of minutes of class time as we had in the fall trimester while cutting down on the transition time in between classes. This helps us complete the academic day before dinner time.  

Although it might be hard to sit through hourlong periods, students understand they are actually getting the academic day completed earlier and faster.  

Teachers Share Vaccination Experiences

Many Northwood faculty and staff are getting vaccinated. As a matter of fact, nearly 80% of Northwood School employees have received or are scheduled to receive their first dose. Nearly 30% have received their second dose of the shotThese numbers are encouraging, considering less than 14% of the US population has received at least one dose.   

The Mirror caught up with five faculty and staff members to ask about their experience getting vaccinated:  

Mr. Tony Miller said, I reacted to the first dose like a normal flu shotmeaning just my arm was sore. The second dose made me feel like I had a severe case of the flu, but I felt a sense of relief afterward. We’ve all been living in fear of getting sick. It was the first time I felt any sense of relief or comfort in a year.” (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)


“Mr. John Spear said “I had no reaction to the first dose, which I was lucky enough to receive the week before students arrived back to school in January. The second dose really knocked me down for a full day, but it was worth it. I’m so excited that so many of my colleagues are able to get the vaccine.” (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)


Ms. Katie Gilligan said, “I feel really, really lucky to be fully vaccinated this early in the year, though the second vaccine definitely kicked my butt. I woke up with just a sore arm and thought that would be the worst of it, but then around 11:00am I hit the couch hard and didn’t move for at least 6 hours. Fever, body aches, headache, stomachache — I had every symptom in the book. But the day after I was totally fine! Again, I feel super lucky and it was totally worth the 12 hours of not feeling good.” (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)


Ms. Noel Carmichael said “I feel much more comfortable about the vaccine. There’s a lot we don’t know, and a lot we are assuming about how much it will protect us and for how long and from which strains. I’m still going to be cautious about wearing a mask and being careful about where I go. For instance, during spring break, I plan to go see my mother and she will also be fully vaccinated and so it’s exciting and a huge deal for my family. We haven’t seen my mom in over a year, so that one thing alone is huge in terms of our quality of life.” (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)


Ms. Tara Wright  said, “I’m very fortunate to have been able to get both vaccines. I had very little reactions which I was also very fortunate, but I still feel like I don’t have a total sense of security because my kids are not vaccinated, and my husband is only partially vaccinated, so I’m continuing to do things as I was prior to being vaccinated.” (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)


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