Humans of Northwood: Patrick Doyle ‘20


I want to go to business or law school after college. I decided to go to Northwood because of the hockey program. I am going to miss being around my teammates all the time, living in the dorms, and the community as a whole. Going in, I wasn’t sure how I was going to like Northwood because it’s such a small school and I’m a big city kid. At this point, I miss Northwood a ton and wish I could go back. I’m so thankful that I had the opportunity to attend and hope my younger brother gets the chance to go as well.

– As told to Olivia Paul ’21

Humans of Northwood: Tomás Restrepo ‘20 

My plans after Northwood are big. I want to go to a top school and play soccer at the highest level. I want to continue growing as a soccer player and a student. After college, my dream is to become a professional player in the sport I love the most.

But for now, I’m thinking about returning to Northwood for a PG year. I was planning on going to college because I had a couple of good offers. But after discussing with my coach, I’ve decided that it would be nice to do a PG. I think I’m still young for college. So after another year at Northwood, I hope I’ll be more mature and have more college choices.

I come from Medellín, Colombia. Back in my country, I reached a point where I had to choose between soccer and academics. But Northwood helped me do both of them at a high level. When I leave Northwood, I’ll miss the people and my teammates the most. I will see a lot of people after I graduating from Northwood, but I don’t think I’ll be able to meet people as amazing as them ever again. At Northwood, I was able to meet people from all over the world and learn about their cultures and languages. Another thing I like about Northwood is that it allows me to fully focus on my dream without any distractions. The growth that I’ve felt within myself has been incredible, and I value it very much.

The Northwood experience is always going to be in my heart. I’ll always remember it with a lot of joy.

– As told to Olivia Paul ’21

Humans of Northwood: Ziyad Fakhuri ‘20

I am from Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). I am 18 years old and I play soccer. After Northwood, I plan to attend North Carolina State and major in Business with a concentration in Finance. I decided to attend Northwood in order to pursue collegiate soccer. What I will miss about Northwood will be the friendships that I made and the people that I have met. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Northwood.

– As told to Olivia Paul ’21

Humans of Northwood: Marcelo Suarez ‘20

My full name is Marcelo Antonio Suarez Rojas, and I am from Chile. I play soccer, and next year I will attend the University of California San Diego as an undecided major. My Northwood experience was a nice way to grow and challenge myself as I aimed for a college scholarship. I liked Northwood a lot. I think Lake Placid will always be an important part of my history. The soccer was really good and I made a lot of connections with people from around the world.

– As told to Olivia Paul ’21

Humans of Northwood: Ana Spencer ‘20

Fun Fact! I absolutely adore Timothee Chalamet and Harry Styles.

My experience at Northwood was a complete metamorphosis. When I first went to Northwood, I was a skier looking to ski in college. But throughout my four years, I grew into so much more than just a skier. I still have lots of growing to do, but I found my true passions like music and writing. In my senior year, I actually decided to stop skiing competitively. Northwood has really helped me step out of my shell.

I’m from Point Pleasant, New Jersey. It’s the Jersey shore (… but nothing like the show, LOL). I chose Northwood because I wanted to improve in skiing. Also, my dad went to Northwood, so I always thought it sounded like a really cool place. When I first toured Northwood, I fell in love with how small and family-like the school seemed, though I was intimidated. Now I call Northwood my home. It’s definitely going to be weird now that I won’t be there anymore. But my best friends and the faculty that I met there will always be dear to my heart.

I have so many memories at Northwood that it’d be really hard to pinpoint a certain moment. I’d say that the smaller moments were probably the best ones. I loved hiking Cobble with Julia to have dance parties or binge-watching the show Friends in the Paul’s apartment during the winter. I also had so much fun performing in the musicals.

There is so much I’ll miss about Northwood. I’m going to miss my best friends, the community, the first snowfall of the school year, and the chocolate-chip pancakes we had on Fridays for breakfast. I’ll also miss driving through Keene in the fall when it was at its peak foliage, hearing the reactions of the girls’ dorm when a Headmaster’s Holiday was announced, swimming in the lake on a nice day, seeing the first fire in the fireplace, getting ready for formal dinners, and watching the hockey teams absolutely kill it during Northwood Tourney. The biggest thing I’m going to miss is waking up every day in an environment full of endless support and love. But there is is one thing I wish was different about Northwood: the groupings. I found it a bummer that it was always “the skiers” or “the hockey players” or “the soccer players.” I think the Northwood community is so much more than that.

Next year, I plan on going to Wheaton College in Massachusetts. It’s about 20 minutes outside of Providence and 40 minutes from Boston. I’m not sure what I want to major in, but I hope to become a writer or a journalist for an art/music magazine someday.

When I was a freshman, I definitely did not picture myself as the human I am now as a senior. But I wouldn’t change myself for anything. I had ups and downs, but I’m happy with who I have evolved into.

– As told to Olivia Paul ’21

Humans of Northwood: Julia Geraldi ‘20 

At Northwood, I skied and was an RA for the girls’ dorm. I’m from Redding, Connecticut, but I chose Northwood not only for the prestigious ski program but also for the academics. I’m a four-year survivor, so there’s a lot about Northwood that I’ll miss when I graduate. I’ll miss my friends, my sport, and, most of all, the Northwood community as a whole!

Next year, I’ll be attending Purdue University and be studying hospitality and tourism management.

– As told to Olivia Paul ’21

Father John Reflects on the Church in the Pandemic

Rev. John Yonkovig is the parish priest at Saint Agnes Church in Lake Placid. Staff writer Olivia Paul spoke to Yonkovig to learn how he is staying connected to God and his parishioners during the pandemic and what the Church’s food pantry is doing for people during this tough time.


The Rev. John Yonkovig of St. Agnes Church on Easter Sunday 2019 (photo: Peter Crowley/Adirondack Daily Enterprise)

Yonkovig is concerned about the volunteers and clients of the church’s food pantry. “As always the Interfaith Food Pantry is supplying food to anyone who is in need,” said Father John. “The Interfaith Food Pantry is supported by faith communities in Lake Placid. Hannaford’s Grocery is a very vital part of this outreach. What is different today,” he added, “is our concern for the well-being of all patrons and volunteers in this Coronavirus time.  In the past, people would freely gather in the basement of St. Agnes and socialize while getting their needed supplies. No longer is this possible.” Father John described how the food pantry is practicing social distancing and keeping everyone safe while also meeting the community’s needs. “Now, pre-packaged parcels of food for families of 2 or 4 or more are prepared. Volunteers distribute the packages at the curbside.

How the parishioners practice their faith has also changed because of the pandemic. “The Governor has prohibited all large gatherings; therefore, we can no longer celebrate public Mass,” said Yonkovig.  “For Catholics, this is a very difficult time because we are a community-based church, a family of faith, the Body of Christ.” Father John has given his parishioners guidance for continuing their faith practice when going to church isn’t possible. “I have encouraged people to pray at home using the sacred scriptures,” said Father John. “The technological world we live in allows for people to participate in Mass on TV or on the web.”

In fact, St. Agnes Church is modifying its practices and using technology to bring its community together during the Holy Week that includes Palm Sunday, Good Friday and Easter. “On Holy Thursday, April 9, the day we celebrate the Last Supper with Jesus and his disciples,” said Father John, “St. Agnes will have its first ‘drive-in’ Eucharistic Adoration. People are invited to sit in their cars in the [St. Agnes Elementary] school parking lot and a small altar will hold the Eucharist for all to see. The parish radio station, WCLP 98.3 will have sacred music and scripture readings so that we can pray together at a safe distance in our cars,” he added.

On the St. Agnes Church website for Holy Week, Rev. John Yonkovig shares a reflection on Psalm 23, followed by a sung rendition of Psalm 23 by the Parish Music Ministry Team:

Father John emphasized the importance of community and faith connections during this difficult time. “Staying connected to God may well be easier during this time of solitude and quiet.  Without all of the normal activities of life, this quiet time allows one to open their hearts to God who is always with us. ‘Be still and know that I am God’ is a line from the Bible that has great importance today,” said Yonkovig.

Father John observed that there might be a silver lining in this pandemic. “In our fear and anxiety, God tells us, ‘Do not be afraid.’ In the quiet of our hearts, we hear that message.  I believe the world will become closer to God through this crisis.”

The Week in Pictures: The Scene From Campus

Olivia Paul ‘21 is the only Lake Placid resident on The Mirror’s staff, who hasn’t dispersed back home throughout the world. While students are away from Northwood’s campus, Olivia will write regular dispatches that portray what she sees on campus and around Lake Placid. This is her second post.

Bowls of fruit in the dining room are now individually-wrapped to help control the spread of the virus. Until Governor Cuomo issued his New York State on Pause” executive order, essentially closing the school, Northwood’s Kitchen staff was serving a small number of essential workers who are cleaning and disinfecting school grounds.


Northwood’s campus property is officially closed, except for faculty, staff, and families. The fitness center and indoor turf field are also closed to everyone until further notice. The trailhead to Cobble Hill, located behind the classroom building, is also closed.


Online classes are in full swing! Students complete all of their homework, projects, class discussions, quizzes, and tests from their homes via computer, tablet or mobile phone. Matthew Paul ’22, son of Dean of Academic Affairs Dr. Laura Paul, is seen here at his dining room table in their West Dorm apartment.


Faculty members and friends Ms. Mavis Agnew (left, with dog Quigley) and Ms. Noel Carmichael observe social distancing guidelines while on a snowy walk around a quiet Mirror Lake earlier this week.


Ms. Katie and Mr. Trevor Gilligan are pictured here picking up their food from Fledging Crow farm, located in Keeseville, NY. The local farm came to school to deliver fresh vegetables, eggs, and dairy products for the faculty and staff who ordered it.


Some of the foods delivered by Fledging Crow Farm.

Photos for this story by Olivia Paul ’21 and Mr. John Spear.

Week in Pictures: Pandemic Leads to Suspension of Campus Activities and Moves Classes Online

Olivia Paul ‘21 is the only Lake Placid resident on The Mirror’s staff, who hasn’t dispersed back home throughout the world. While students are away from Northwood’s campus, Olivia will write regular dispatches that portray what she sees on campus and around Lake Placid. This is her first post.

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On the evening of Wednesday, March 11th, students were informed that they would be sent home in an effort to control the spread of the global coronavirus pandemic. Students were shocked and had little time to process the news before they had to pack. It was strange to see the dormitory hallways appear as if it was the end of the school year. Some students took everything home. Others packed their rooms completely and took only what they could bring on the bus or plane. And some students left their rooms intact — as if they were going home for spring break.


There were a lot of sad goodbyes throughout the school community as everyone left campus for their homes. The sudden departure was most difficult for seniors, who leave campus uncertain if they will have a traditional Northwood graduation.

Even though the students had left, the teachers were still working. Faculty spent two days in workshops to learn how to move their courses online to GoogleClassroom. Online classes began yesterday.


Local schools are closed too, and some faculty children were hanging around campus entertaining themselves as their parents attended workshops about online teaching. Many Northwood teachers will homeschool their children while they teach their online classes. Most are doing both for the first time.

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We had the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in the Lake Placid area on Tuesday, March 17. Everyone has been advised to stay home and hunker down to minimize the spread of this virus. Lake Placid is a ghost town. Many businesses are closed. Bars and restaurants, if not closed altogether, are serving takeout only. Whiteface Mountain and all Olympic venues, including the hockey rinks, are closed. Major events, like the ECAC hockey championships, the World Synchronized Skating Championship, and Can/Am Hockey Tournaments, have been canceled. The library is asking patrons to not return books. Parking is usually difficult to find in Lake Placid, but today village parking lots are empty.


This year was supposed to be the first spring that Northwood School had a track team, but the track season — as well as lacrosse, tennis, crew, white water kayaking, golf, and rock climbing — may not happen at all.

A small number of international students remained on campus for a brief period while they made arrangements to go home or find a place to stay off-campus. Northwood’s nursing staff prepared guidance for faculty on campus in the event that a student developed symptoms of COVID-19. Nurses also prepared personal protective equipment kits to help teachers stay safe while assisting a sick student. Thankfully, as of today, no students or staff have become ill.

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The Hannaford grocery store that students go to on their Sunday “jitney runs” has empty shelves, as local residents stockpile toilet paper, hand sanitizer, fresh fruit, and vegetables.


The coronavirus pandemic is disrupting the college search, especially for juniors. Northwood canceled the March 14 administration of the SAT. The College Board canceled the May SAT worldwide, and the status of the May AP exams is uncertain. Colleges everywhere are canceling campus tours and information sessions at a time when most juniors are typically scheduling campus visits.

Photographs by Mr. John Spear, Mr. Chisondi Mzese, Ms. Ingrid Van Slyke, Mr. Jim Dingle, and Olivia Paul ’21.

Jang Named Finalist for National Merit Scholarship

Jessica Jang

Su Hae (Jessica) Jang ’20 (Photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge)

Senior Su Hae (Jessica) Jang is one step closer to winning a National Merit Scholarship, which can mean thousands of dollars each year of college scholarships, which can make a big dent in Jang’s tuition bill. Jang is one of 15,000 finalists among the more than 1.6 million entrants into the competition.

“I was really surprised to hear that I was named a finalist because the first time I heard it was from Mr. Spear in journalism class and before then I had no idea I would be a finalist.” Jessica Jang ‘20. As of now, Jessica wants to major in environmental science but she is also really interested in history and sociology. She is keeping her options open because she has a lot of interests.

Aside from being the highest-ranked student in the class of 2020, Jang rows for Northwood’s crew team, is an RA in Bergamini Dorm, is a student-leader of the Adirondack Youth Climate Summit, a leader of Northwood’s Sustainability Committee and for two years has been the editor-in-chief of The Mirror.

The National Merit Scholarship is offered by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. Each year, almost 10,000 students receive scholarships based on their PSAT scores and other accomplishments. There are three main types of National Merit Scholarships: National Merit $2500 scholarships, corporate-sponsored scholarships, and college-sponsored merit scholarships.

According to the organization’s web site, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) was established in 1955 — a time in which there was concern that the United States was lagging behind in the cold war scientific race, but the public was indifferent to rewarding intellectual accomplishment. In response, the National Merit Scholarship Program was founded to identify and honor scholastically talented American youth and to encourage them to develop their abilities to the fullest. Through this nationwide competition, National Merit Scholarships are awarded to program Finalists and Special Scholarships are awarded to other high performing participants who meet a corporate sponsor’s eligibility criteria.

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