Awards Ceremony Celebrates Achievement and the Places We Come From

In the final days of the school year, following commencement and LEAP and before final exams, the Northwood community pauses to reflect on our “new school,” with juniors assuming the leadership left vacant by graduating seniors. Mr. Mellor opened the annual underclass awards ceremony, held on Wednesday, May 29, by asking a group of students to show where they are from using Google Earth. As the globe spun from Lake Placid to China to Bermuda to Star Lake to Chile and back to Lake Placid, Mr. Mellor encouraged students to appreciate the different places we all come from and to also appreciate the place that we all create together, Northwood School.

Following that exercise, Headmaster Mr. Michael Maher led an awards ceremony where more than twenty students won nearly thirty awards, including over $750,000 in college scholarships.

[Read more…]

Ten Students Inducted into Cum Laude Society


Ten students were inducted into Northwood School’s Cum Laude Society at School Meeting on Friday, May 10. They join four seniors who were inducted to the honor society last year. The Cum Laude Society is Northwood School’s highest academic honor.

Founded in 1906, the Cum Laude Society is dedicated to honoring scholastic achievement in secondary schools. The founders of the society modeled Cum Laude after Phi Beta Kappa and in the years since its founding, Cum Laude has grown to 382 chapters, mostly at Independent schools in the United States.

The 2019 class of the Cum Laude Society inducted on May 10 includes Jane Baumer ’19, Lanxin Lin ’19, Beth Fisher ’19, Alex van Schalkwyk ’19, Courtney Fairchild ’20, Zachary Ellsworth ’20, Aleksei Rutkovskii ’19, Rachel Rosner ’20, Erin Hooper ’20, and Rintaro Akasaka ’20. They were joined at the ceremony by Cum Laude Society members who were inducted in 2019: Isaac Newcomb ’19, Chelsea Smith ’19, Aiden Smith ’19, Joanna Rosenbluth ’19.

Northwood Seniors Make Their College Decisions


Some of the class of 2019 on “College T-Shirt Day, an annual tradition at Northwood (photo: Mr. Michael Aldridge).

May 1st has come and passed, which means only one thing for Northwood’s seniors: they finally know where they will be attending college! For those who are not aware, May 1st was the deadline for all seniors to declare their college choices. Now, some of our senior hockey players at Northwood will be taking a gap year, meaning that instead of going to college next year, they will be playing U20 hockey at a high level. But for many of the seniors here at Northwood, this is it. They’re almost done with high school.

To celebrate the fast-approaching end of the four–or five–years of high school, I interviewed a few of our seniors.


Kevin Quinn ’19

Kevin Quinn ‘19 has decided to attend Oswego State University. Quinn said, “I chose Oswego because of the affordability. Not being in debt for the rest of my life is important to me. Also, the school have a really good communications program, which is what I want to study in College.” Quinn plans to get a masters degree in Broadcasting and Business Administration in five years. “Overall, I feel like I did a good job of executing what I wanted to achieve here at Northwood. And now, I’m off to the next stage of my life,” he added.


Grey Pfefferkorn ‘19

Grey Pfefferkorn ‘19 is attending Clarkson University. “Clarkson has a strong business program, and I got a $50,000 scholarship,” said Pfefferkorn. “I plan on getting my majors in Accounting there. Although I’m still on the fence, I might choose to play club hockey there as well.”


Chris Athanasiadis ‘19

Senior Chris Athanasiadis is excited to go to Saint Mary’s College of California. “I’m not sure yet what I’m going to study at Saint Mary’s, but it will probably be either Business or Marketing. And though I’m still waiting to hear back, I think that I’ll also be able to play Division I soccer there,” commented Athanasiadis. The best part about going to college for him is that he will be in California, which means “beautiful weather, lots of trees, and pretty girls!”


Josh Waters ’19

Senior Joshua Waters ‘19 is heading off to Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire. Water said, “I’m not quite sure what I am going to study there yet, but I think that I’m going for Economics.” The reason why he chose Dartmouth was not only because of the strong academics the school offers. “When I toured there, all of the faculty were really nice, and the Division I hockey coaches were very interested in me, which altogether made the school feel like the right fit for me,” said Waters.

All in all, it appears that the Senior Class of Northwood has a pretty firm grasp on where they will be attending in the fall. As the Northwood community prepares to say goodbye to these dear friends of ours and watch them take their next big step in this world, we wish them all the best of luck in both their college ambitions and in their lives thereafter.

What I Did During My Spring Break: Northwood Edition

At Northwood School, teachers aren’t likely to assign the classic essay, “What I Did Over Vacation,” so The Mirror asked Wyatt Friedlander to channel his inner elementary school student to write this report:


Lars Kroes ’21 in Vieux-Fort, St. Lucia (Photo: Facebook).

I went kite surfing and normal surfing with my family. I played golf with my mom and dad. I also hiked the Pitons, which was awesome! I got a concussion over break too which isn’t awesome.

– Lars Kroes ’21


Over the break, I went home to Chicago. I played hockey for a couple of different teams. I relaxed a lot over the break and hung out with some friends. I also worked out a lot.

– Trent Seger ‘20



Charlie Purcell ’21 in Squaw Valley (Photo: Instagram).

My break was Fantastic! I stayed home for a bit, worked, and went on a vacation with my dad. We went to California to ski. I got really sunburnt then came home.

– Charlie Purcell ‘21


I went to Tokyo over the break and saw some really cool stuff. They have interesting toilets. I went to Hawaii and caught some really big fish. I also got the tan on.

– Rowen Norfolk ‘22


Over break, I went to Germany to visit my friends and family since I had lived there for a year. It was super cool. I got to see my little cousins that I haven’t been able to see in a while and hang out with friends I haven’t talked to in a couple of years. I worked on my German too!

– Cisco Delliquadri ‘20


Over break, I played hockey in the Senior World Championships. We came in 2nd. I got DB Sports Club Player of the Tournament. We played Mexico, Australia, Spain, North Korea, and Slovenia. I also got to spend time with family. I went to Canada with my sister and hung out with friends.

– Aimee Headland ‘19

David McCauley Named Director of College Counseling

McCauley Replaces Spear, who Takes on New Role


F. David McCauley, Jr. (Photo: Berkshire School)

Head of School Michael J. Maher has announced the appointment of F. David McCauley, Jr. to the position of Director of College Counseling for Northwood School, effective in early July. David will bring years of experience in college counseling and admissions to his new responsibilities.

McCauley replaces John Spear ’88, who has served as Director of College Counseling since 2011 and will take on a new position, beginning in July, as Assistant Head for School Life. In that role, Spear will be focused on managing the internal life of the school, including student affairs and overseeing the execution of critical projects and initiatives.

Currently, McCauley is the Director of College Counseling at Berkshire School in Sheffield, MA. While there, he has provided college-related guidance and support for students and their parents, transitioned professional relationships with college admission officers to best serve students in the college admission process and originated visit programs for college admission deans and vice presidents to showcase academic programs and overseen office staff. A member of the residential faculty, he also has been an advisor and assisted with residential program duties.

Prior to his work at Berkshire School, McCauley spent four years as Director of College Counselling and Assistant Registrar at Beijing High School No. 4 and Beijing National Day School in China. He has also worked as an admissions officer at Hamilton College, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Creighton University and Siena College.

David has served as a source of secondary school and college admission information and has been quoted in the Chronicle of Higher Education, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Lawlor Review.  McCauley has consulted the undergraduate admission offices of nearly 100 colleges and universities including: Brown, Boston College, Bowdoin, Colby, Colgate, Johns Hopkins, and UPenn.

A graduate of Colby College with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish, and St. Lawrence University with an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership, McCauley is active in numerous professional associations.

David and his wife Marleny and their son Sean, will be joining the Northwood community this summer.

“I am thrilled to welcome David McCauley and his family to the Northwood School community,” said Headmaster Michael J. Maher. “David’s extensive experience on both sides of the college admission desk and his student-centered approach will serve Northwood students and their families well as they navigate the college search and make the best matches for their lives after Northwood School.”

Soccer Players Try Skiing

As the winter came to a close, Black Rock FC had an exciting time skiing at the top of Whiteface. Many of the international students who had never seen snow before enjoyed learning how to ski or snowboard with help from their teammates. Here are what some our soccer players thought about their experience:

Kelvin and Jamie

Mr. Kelvin Martinez (right) with Mr. Jamie Welsh on Excelsior in the winter of 2018-19 (Photo: Ms. Marcy Fagan).

Pedro Paggi ‘19, who skied for the first time, said, “It was unbelievable how one experience can change your life. I had such a great time doing another sport other than football, and I loved it. In my first minute, I almost had a really awful crash when I couldn’t break. I almost stopped in a tree. It was unforgettable.’’

Alex van Schalkwyk ‘19, a first-time snowboarder, commented,  “[Learning how to snowboard] was an amazing experience. It was difficult at the beginning, but as time went on, it started becoming easier. By the end of the day, we all went down from the summit, which was crazy. I ate a lot of snow, but it was worth it. I’d definitely do it again.”

Mateo Rodriguez ‘20, an experienced skier, said, “We had a great time skiing. At first, it was quite challenging for those of us who already knew how to ski well. Although at first, some of the first-time guys struggled, they soon started to gather up confidence in themselves and began going down the hill more comfortably! Not only was it a truly fun activity in which we got to spend time with our close friends in a very different environment, but it was also a great team-building exercise for the group as a whole.”

Anton Johansson ‘20, who had skied before, was also surprised at the progress his teammates made throughout the day. He said, “We all had a great time at the mountain. The first couple of hours, a lot of the guys had a hard time. But after a while, they started going down the slopes without a problem. We ended up having a wonderful day with a lot of laughs.”

Kelvin Martinez, the soccer coach, was proud to see his team trying a new sport. “When we first announced the trip, there was a lot of hesitation. Many players preferred holding our usual soccer training, but in the end, their first question was, ‘When can we go again?’ It was great to see our players doing something outside of their usual routine, something many of them have never done in the past. I think that twenty years from now, this will be one of the experiences these young men will talk about: the time their soccer team, comprised of players from nineteen countries, went to take on Whiteface Mountain,” Martinez said. He added, “Many of them have committed to keep improving their skiing abilities on their own. Overall, it was a great day for the soccer team at Northwood. The boys truly enjoyed spending the entire day at the mountain.”

Secret Mueller Documents Link Northwood Student to Russian Collusion

April 1, 2019 [April Fools Day] — The Mueller report is in, and Donald Trump has been found not guilty of colluding with Russia during his campaign. While the President claims to be cleared of all charges, a whole new scandal, with roots at Northwood School, has been unearthed in its place.

Hidden deep in the mountains of files collected by the Mueller investigation is a group of documents that connects a Northwood student to a bold scheme to illegally influence the election in favor of Trump. The documents were leaked to The Mirror anonymously, and the veracity of the files was confirmed by two independent sources close to the investigation.


Northwood sophomore Riley Biro allegedly colluded with Russia (photo: Facebook).

According to the leaked documents, someone with the username “RBMountianMan” has been engaged in numerous communications with high-level government officials in St. Petersburg, Russia, and may have even aided in Russian collusion to turn the 2016 presidential election for Donald Trump. The most troubling part of this news is that RBMountainMan’s IP address traces all the way back to Northwood School’s GPS coordinates.

Anonymous high-level sources close to the Mueller probe have concluded that Riley Biro, a Northwood School sophomore from Virginia, is the prime suspect in this alleged collusion scandal. The Mirror has also confirmed that Biro is the only student in the school with the initials “R.B.” and that he is a mountain climber of some renown.

Sources close to the story say Biro began colluding with Russia from his home in Virginia in the months before the election. Biro chose to transfer to Northwood because of the school’s strategic location deep in the Adirondacks. Intelligence experts believe that Northwood’s far northern location could allow Biro easy access to transmit radio signals over Greenland straight to Russia.

“The distance would be much longer if he had to transmit it all the way from his home in Virginia.  In a way, this treasonous plot by Biro was actually somewhat genius,” said Matt Donaldson, a Professor of Technology and Criminal Justice at Johns Hopkins University, when asked about the story following one of his classes recently.


The estimated path of Biro’s radio transmissions.

Furthermore, radio signals far north are hard to detect because there are very few American radars that are aligned to pick up signals directly over Greenland, not to mention the common blizzard-like conditions that impede American radar tracking.

The dense Adirondack Mountains also shield Biro’s radio signals from intelligence agencies south of the school, keeping both the CIA headquarters in Langley, VA and the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio unaware of his stealth actions. If he had continued this colluding with Russian back in Virginia, the radar at these stations would have most likely picked up his signals and have ordered Biro’s immediate arrest.

President Trump took to Twitter to distance himself from Biro, but deleted the post shortly after tweeting it:

Trump 2020
Digging into Mueller documents even further, it has even been found that in order to keep Riley Biro’s last name private, the Russians have used a Clever Title for Riley’s Slush fund, “The Riley Bureau of Campaign Funds.”

Most people at Northwood were shocked that their sleepy school in the woods is linked to a global news story. But not everyone is surprised that Biro is involved. Northwood’s Director of Technology and Robotics instructor Mr. Jeff Martin said he saw a warning sign. “I have always expected Riley to do something like this,” said Martin. “In fact, during study hall one night, I saw Riley downloading the Tor Browser which is often used for surfing on the dark web. But to this extent? Wow, just wow.”

School administrators refused to comment on this developing story, expressing concerns for student privacy. Saying that the Northwood community is shocked by these developments would be an understatement.

The Mirror will continue reporting on this breaking news story as new developments unfold.

Editor’s note: the dateline of this article was revised on 9/6/2019 to clearly indicate to readers that this was an April Fools satire story.

Humans of Northwood: Castillo Twins Edition


I’m Angie. I was born in Brooklyn but raised in Manhattan. In my family, Addie and I are the youngest. In the fall I do cross country, I did the play and the musical during the winter and then in the spring I do lacrosse, but I really like to run. I came to Northwood because my brother went to a boarding school and it’s like a tradition in our family now. My mom wanted me to come here. I love the people in Northwood, it wouldn’t be the same without certain people here. Living with your best friends is the best — it’s just like a dream. After Northwood, I want to go to college, obviously, but for singing so I gotta pass the audition first.   I’m Addie. I’m from Manhattan in New York City. I’m 17 years old. I’m in 10th grade. I have quite a few siblings, I have two older brothers, an older sister and a twin. In the fall I ran cross country, then I’m part of the drama program during the winter but I also do vocals and in the spring I play lacrosse. I came to Northwood because it’s one of the smallest boarding school and it’s not too far away from home. I also thought the location was really cool. When I first came to Lake Placid to visit I liked the history of this town, especially the Olympic history. Classes are small compared to the classes in Manhattan, so it is better for me. Northwood has a real sense of community. That’s what I like about it, everyone is so supportive.

– As told to Margot Rouquette ’20

Humans of Northwood: Francisco Eduardo Castillo ‘19

FranPeople call me “Fran.” I am 19 years old from Dominican Republic. I have an older sister, but she’s lucky enough to be born here in the US, while I was born on a small island in the Caribbean, which I love. I am a soccer player here at Northwood, but I also like learning all the good things that Northwood offers. I came to Northwood because I wanted to follow my dream: playing soccer and studying at the same time and at a high level. My favorite part of Northwood is how everybody is welcoming and they all teach you new stuff. My plans after Northwood are hopefully attending a good college where I can play soccer and study until I decide which is better for me. Something that I am never going to forget about Northwood is probably when in the beginning of the school year, when the cold was starting, Shanks [senior Matthew Shanklin] offered me a warm jacket or when I go to Will’s room at night just to talk. I will never forget this because it made me feel part of the Northwood family right since the beginning.”

As told to Margot Rouquette ’20

Second Trimester Honor Rolls Released

honorrollMarch 10, 2019 — Dr. Laura Finnerty Paul, Northwood School’s Dean of Academic Affairs, today announced the Honor Rolls for the second trimester of the 2018-19 school year.

Ed. Note: this list was originally published with an incomplete list of students on the Effort Honor Roll.

Upperclassmen (Gr. 11 & 12):  Minimum weighted GPA of 4.00 with no grade below B+
Underclassmen (Gr. 9 & 10):  Minimum weighted GPA of 3.70 with no grade below B+ [Read more…]

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