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For Grandparents, a Slice of Student Life

More than 200 grandparents visited Westminster Sept. 28 for an opportunity to experience a day in the life of their grandchildren attending Westminster. They sat in on classes, attended a Chapel talk, ate lunch in Armstrong Dining Hall, toured the campus and spent the afternoon watching athletic games.
Among them was John Curtiss, who was visiting his grandson, Evin Curtiss ’24. John joked that one of his most memorable visits to Westminster was when he was a student at Williston Northampton School and he lost a lower tooth playing hockey against the Martlets. He and his wife, Sue Ellen, visit campus often to visit Evin –– and watch the hockey games.
Hans and Terry Carstenson, who were visiting their grandson, Chip Genung ’25, marveled at how much the campus had changed since their son, Ted Carstenson ’95 and daughter Lee Carstenson Genung ’93 attended.
“The campus is so beautiful, I hadn’t been back since our son graduated; the change is just amazing,” said Hans.
Shellye Davis, who was visiting grandchildren Evan ’26 and Nyia Francis ’25, attended French class and while she didn’t speak the language she was impressed at how engaged the students were.
In the morning, Head of School Elaine White welcomed grandparents for what is one of the school’s favorite days of the year.
“We love having grandparents on campus for three reasons,” she said. “First of all, you are happy to be here and have this moment to be at the center of your grandchild’s world. You are excited to be in class and participate, and you don’t bring nearly as much embarrassment as your own children do. You do not come with expectations of perfect grades or reminders about seeing a teacher for extra help. You fill our spaces with love and pride that is tangible.
“Secondly, your grandchildren listen to you better than they listen to us or their parents, so if you wouldn’t mind slipping in a reminder to clean their room or get a haircut, we would be ever so grateful.
“Lastly, you understand the value and privilege of education. As you share your wisdom and life experience, you help your grandchildren to understand the remarkable opportunities at their fingertips. We are so grateful for your perspective.”

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