Northfield Mount Hermon School
|Northfield Mount Hermon|
|Seal of Northfield Mount Hermon
Discere et Vivere
Learn and Live
|Mount Hermon, MA, USA|
|School type||Private, Boarding|
|Founder||Dwight L. Moody|
|Head of school||Peter B. Fayroian|
|Average class size||12 students|
|Student to teacher ratio||7:1|
|Campus||Rural, 215 acres (core campus), 1,565 acres (4.5 km²) (total land holdings)|
|Color(s)||Maroon & Dark Blue|
|Athletics||20 Interscholastic Sports|
|Endowment||$121 million (as of March 31, 2012)|
Northfield Mount Hermon, commonly referred to as NMH, is a co-educational independent boarding high school for students in grades 9–12. The school is located on the banks of the Connecticut River, adjacent to the town of Gill, Massachusetts, United States.
NMH is a member of the Eight Schools Association, established in 1973 comprising Phillips Academy (known as Andover), Phillips Exeter Academy (known as Exeter), Choate Rosemary Hall (known as Choate), Deerfield Academy, Hotchkiss School, Lawrenceville School, and St. Paul's School.
The school was originally founded by Protestant evangelist Dwight Lyman Moody as two separate institutions: Northfield Seminary for Young Ladies in 1879, and Mount Hermon School for Boys in 1881. Moody envisaged both these schools as parts of his dream to provide the best possible education for less privileged people. Even in their infancy, Moody’s schools matriculated students whose parents were slaves, Native Americans, and foreign nationals—something that was unimaginable in many elite private schools at that time.
On September 14, 1934, Headmaster Elliott Speer was murdered by a shotgun blast through the window of his study at the school. The crime was never solved.
Moody located the girls' school in Northfield, Massachusetts, the town of his birth, and the boys' school several miles away in the town of Gill. After the schools merged in 1971, both campuses remained in use until the Northfield campus was closed in 2005. Moody's birthplace and burial place are both located on the Northfield campus.
In Moody's view, Christian religious education was an essential part of the objective of his schools. However, under subsequent administrations, the schools became more theologically liberal and ultimately became nonsectarian and ceased evangelization of students. (This change put them at odds with other Moody institutions such as Moody Bible Institute in Chicago). Spiritual life continued to be an important part of the schools, but religious services ceased to be compulsory and students were no longer instructed in Christian doctrine.
In 1934, reformist headmaster Elliot Speer was murdered by a shotgun blast through his study window. The crime was never solved. The book Murder at Mount Hermon: The Unsolved Killing of Headmaster Elliott Speer by Mount Hermon alumnus Craig Walley proposes a possible solution.
In 1944, Howard Lane Rubendall, a graduate of Dickinson College and Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York assumed the presidency of the Northfield Schools, which included both Headmaster of Mount Hermon School for Boys and President of Northfield School for Girls. He came from First Presbyterian Church, Albany, New York, and continued at the Northfield Schools until 1961.
In the 1970s and 1980s, many U.S. private secondary schools that had previously offered single-sex education either became coeducational unilaterally or merged with other schools to become coeducational. In what was then a controversial decision, Northfield Seminary and Mount Hermon School merged to become a single coeducational institution in 1971. The settlement at NMH of mutually accepted terms was a contrast to the takeover of Abbot Academy by its neighbor, Phillips Academy. The schools had been run for many years by a single board of trustees with a similar mission and vision. The new school was dubbed Northfield Mount Hermon School. Both original campuses were retained at that time, a frequent bus schedule to connect the two campuses (five miles apart) was added but students were (and still are) segregated by sex at the dormitory level.
The school operated on two campuses up until the end of the 2004–05 school year, but consolidated all students and classes onto its Mount Hermon campus when the school's board of trustees decided that students would best benefit educationally and socially in a smaller, more close-knit community. Most influential in the Board's decision were the capital resources required to maintain operation on two campuses.
In December 2009, the Northfield campus was sold to David Green, CEO and founder of Hobby Lobby The school retained ownership of the Moody legacy sites: Round Top (Dwight L. and Emma Moody's burial site), the Birthplace, and the Homestead. Also retained are the golf course, the East Northfield Water Company, and over one thousand acres (4 km²) of the Northfield Ridge. Although The Auditorium was part of the sale, the school brokered an agreement to continue to hold its annual Concert of Sacred Music there annually.
In 1976, a history of Northfield and Mount Hermon entitled So Much to Learn  was written by Burnham Carter to commemorate the school's 100th anniversary. A second history of the school entitled Lift Thine Eyes  was released in October 2010 to commemorate the school's 130th anniversary.
Northfield Mount Hermon today 
All students are required to participate in the school's work program. The school's handbook states, "The work program is a tradition that dates back to the school's beginning and allows students to know the dignity of labor. The program creates a sense of investment in the welfare of the school and a unique community spirit." Student jobs include washing dishes, shelving books in the library, and making maple syrup on the farm. Some students' work duties include editing the school newspaper, performing residential leadership duties, presiding over computer labs, or printing photographs.
The percentage of international students at NMH is above the average of many elite private schools, at 20 per cent compared to perhaps 10 per cent at other institutions. (The 2006–07 handbook lists about 120 students with non-US addresses, more than three-fourths of them from East Asia.) In many cases, international students make a connection with the school through family members who also attended NMH. Earlier in the school's history, some international students were evangelized by Moody or his affiliated denominations and religious missions in the 19th century.
In 2004, the trustees of Northfield Mount Hermon School decided to close the Northfield campus and to consolidate the school as of September 2005 with a smaller coeducational student body on the Mount Hermon campus. This decision has been controversial. Before consolidation, the school had about 1,100 students enrolled per year; enrollment has now settled to slightly above 600 students.
In May 2006, it was announced that David Bolger '50 would donate $10 million in securities to the school. It is the largest gift in the school's history. In addition to his $10 million gift, in October 2006, it was announced that David Bolger will donate another $2.5 million to fund a new admissions building. In June 2006 it was announced that William R. Rhodes '53 had donated $5 million as the lead gift for a new $29 million arts center. The arts center, opened in the fall of 2008, is named Rhodes Center for the Arts in honor of Rhodes and his father Edward, class of 1916.
In September 2012, Peter B. Fayroian was installed as the Head of School after the surprising resignation of the former Head of School Thomas Sturtevant.
NMH sports programs include:
(*) – Denotes Co-ed teams (|) – Denotes separate, male or female teams
- London ("Cottage 1" or "C-1") – Freshman dorm
- Monadnock ("Cottage 2" or "C-2") – Freshman dorm
- North Farmhouse – Post Graduate dorm
- Hayden Hall("Hayden" or "The Den")
- Shea Family Cottage ("Shea")
- Overtoun ("Tron")
- North Crossley (divided into Lower North Crossley and Upper North Crossley)
- Manchester ("Cottage 5" or "C-5") – Freshman dorm
- Hubbard ("Cottage 4" or "C-4") – Freshman dorm
- Mary E. Mackinnon Cottage ("Mack")
- Wallace Hall – Divided into North and South Sides.
- South Crossley (divided into Lower South Crossley and Upper South Crossley)
- Rikert Hall Smallest dorm on campus.
- Crossley, the only co-ed dorm on campus (although boys and girls are separated in the north and south ends) also houses spaces for student-run organizations, as well as NMH's own radio station, WNMH.
Classroom buildings 
- Cutler Science Center – Named after headmaster Dr. Henry Franklin Cutler, the Cutler Science Center is home to the following:
- Blake Hall – Donated by S. Prestley Blake in 1993, Blake Hall contains 5 classrooms for humanities, and the religious studies office. Grandin Auditorium is in the oldest portion of the building, originally known as Camp Hall. Blake Hall formerly housed the Dance Program, which relocated to the Rhodes Center for the Arts. The building is also home to the Mail Center, with the Summer Session offices located above.
- Beveridge Hall – Beveridge is the largest multi-subject classroom building. It contains a lounge/conference room which is used for events such as NMH Diversity Summits or Board of Trustee meetings. The floor plan is the following:
- Lower Modular – The Lower Modular contains English studies and several Humanities classes.
- Upper Modular – The Upper Modular contains the Humanities and Health classrooms, although with the recent sale of the Northfield campus has been mostly switched over to offices for campus organizations, such as Upward Bound or the IT (Information Technology) department.
- Social Hall – One of the oldest buildings on campus, Social Hall (previously "Music Building") houses the Chaplain's office, the Center for Multi-Cultural Education, and a recitation hall converted into lounge space.
Rhodes Arts Center 
The 65,000-square-foot (6,000 m2) Rhodes Arts Center or Rhodes Center for the Arts (at right) opened in fall 2008. One of the first performances in Rhodes was a live taping of NPR show "From the Top," which featured NMH's Select Women's Ensemble. Donated in part by William R. Rhodes, the Rhodes Arts Center houses all of the arts programs at NMH as of the 2008 summer term. The Arts center is fondly referred to as "The RAC" across campus.
- The facility is located on the eastern edge of campus between Holbrook Hall and Forslund Gymnasium, where Recitation Hall and Silliman Laboratory once stood. Here, the center for the arts provides a visible image of the "new campus" identity, redefine the landscape and academic quad, create community as it sits along current student paths, and take advantage of shared parking in support of the plan to pedestrianize the center of campus. It houses two concert performance spaces, as well as a theater and multiple dance studios.
- The upper level houses Raymond Concert Hall, Heffernon Hall, and the Theater, as well as a small Art Gallery. On the middle level are the dance studios, art department head offices, and practice rooms. The lowest level houses the visual arts department.
- Unique design features:
- An interior "street" that runs on an axis through all three levels, connecting the different parts of the building;
- a tower, echoing Blake Hall, Memorial Chapel, and the towers of Northfield, which houses the carillon formerly in Northfield's Sage Chapel;
- Gold LEED certified
Other buildings 
This listing does not include the offices that may be included in classroom buildings (ex: International Students Assoc. in Beveridge basement) or on campus faculty housing.
- Blake Hall – Student Center, Student Activities office, Summer Session office, the Press Box Snack Bar, NMH Book Store, and Mail Center.
- Grandin Auditorium – Formerly the dining hall portion of Camp Hall, it is attached to Blake Hall and currently serves as a multi-purpose auditorium.
- O'Connor Health Center – 24/7 medical staff, beds, x-ray machine, and counsellors' and psychiatrists' offices. O'Connor is a registered hospital in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
- Alumni Hall (formerly "West Hall") – cafeteria and conference rooms
- Norton House – Former Admission office. A new $5 million admission office, Bolger Cottage opened in Fall 2009.
- Bolger Cottage – Admission office opened in Fall 2009, named after David Bolger.
- Oaknoll Cottage – Currently faculty housing.
- Holbrook Hall – Head of school's office, deans' offices, administration offices.
- Cottage 3 or C-3 – College counseling office.
- Memorial Chapel – Built by NMH students in 1899, Memorial Chapel is home to a beautiful organ and a multi-million dollar audio/visual system. The chapel is multi-faith. It is also used when the entire school must gather inside, such as for all school meetings and lectures by guest speakers, since the Northfield campus closed.
- Schauffler Library – Library, media lab and info commons housing, IT department
- Farm – A functional New England farm, with dairy cows, horses, and chickens, as well as a cider house, sugar house, vegetable and flower gardens, and a small farm store. The farm produces maple syrup, ice cream, milk, and cider for the cafeteria.
- Forslund Gym and James Gymnasiums The Forslund addition to James Gym was built in the mid 1960s. The two gyms house basketball courts, a wrestling gym, weight room, locker rooms, swimming/water polo pool, trainers, and athletic department offices. Underneath Forslund is the "The Cage" where all outdoor education equipment is stored.
- McCollum Ice Rink – Fully functioning hockey arena with heated bleachers.
- Power Plant – A fully functioning power plant providing the NMH community with heat and hot water through an underground steam transport system.
- Laundry Building – A building next to the power plant where students send their laundry.
Biblical reference 
Mount Hermon is referred to in the Bible as one of Joshua's conquests: "Thus Joshua took all this land: the mountain country, all the South, all the land of Goshen, the lowland, and the Jordan plain—the mountains of Israel and its lowlands, from Mount Halak and the ascent to Seir, even as far as Baal Gad in the Valley of Lebanon below Mount Hermon." (Joshua 11:16–17).
D.L. Moody's aspirations for a young men's school are expressed in Psalm 133, from which he chose the name "Mount Hermon": "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments; As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the Lord commanded the blessing, even life for evermore." (Psalm 133:1–3)
Leadership positions 
NMH students are able to apply to various different leadership positions. The Center for International Education selects a number of International Ambassadors (IAs) whose job is to welcome new international students at the beginning of each year, as well as to promote diversity throughout the year. Peer mediators are nominated by faculty members who think they are worthy of helping settle roommate issues between students. Resident leaders help with administrative tasks and monitor study hall. Each class also elects class representatives to Student Congress, which works directly with the school administration and can propose new rules or question existing ones.
Student life 
Clubs and organizations 
Students participate in a wide variety of extracurricular organizations. NMH's Student Activities office provides support, services, and resources for student organizations, including places to meet, materials, and funding. Organizations are listed below.
- NMH Robotics Club – Being one of the newest clubs on campus, NMH Robotics Club, established in 2010, is also one of the most energetic and progressive ones. The club participates in RoboCup Competition annually and, as 2011 American champion team, is chosen to compete in RoboCup 2011 Istanbul in July, representing USA.
- Chess Club – For students interested in playing chess, possibly competitively with other schools.
- Debate Society – Debaters test their skills against each other and in interscholastic competition.
- NMH Farm – Students press cider, make maple syrup, harvest vegetables and flowers for drying, work in the greenhouse, and drive horses.
- NMH Outreach – Volunteer in a variety of community projects and programs.
- Peer Education Program – Students are selected and trained to be resource people for the community.
- Student Congress – NMH's student government, members are elected by class and by house.
- NMH Radio – The school’s online radio station broadcasts 24 hours every day around the globe with student and faculty DJs.
- GEECS for Electronics, Engineering, Computers, and Science – GEECS provides an environment for students interested in technology and science to gather, learn from one another, and explore technology. Notable projects have included building the school's first e-mail system, hosting its own server (named Ishmael) and web site, and providing services such as e-mail and hosting to its members. GEECS is largely accredited with bringing the first computer and networking systems to NMH.
- LEAMPH (Loving Everyone Also Making People Happy) – LEAMPH is an on on-campus happiness boost for members of the NMH community with spontaneous cupcake handouts, Happy Hug Mondays, Sun Fuzzies Saturdays, Song Sundays, and the much-anticipated monthly Day of Utter Nonsense.
- The NMH Ultimate Frisbee Club- For Ultimate players who wish to throw all year round.
- The Bridge – The student newspaper expresses the point of view of the community. Name was temporarily changed to "The Hermon Echo," but was reverted back to "The Bridge" in the fall of 2007.
- The Hermonite – A student newspaper that was reestablished in the winter of 2010. Students decided to add another source of print media to the campus in order to express a strictly student point of view, and brought back the Hermonite to restore the history at NMH.
- Gemini – the school yearbook, compiled and edited by students.
- The Globe – A magazine for international students, published once per term.
- International Connections – The Center for International Education's monthly newsletter.
- Mandala – The NMH art and literary magazine published yearly.
Multicultural groups 
- American Indian Students Association (AISA)
- Chinese Students Association (CSA)
- Korean Students Association (KSA)
- Circle of Sisters (COS) – Nurtures the intellectual, social, professional, spiritual and physical growth of women of African-American, Hispanic, and Caribbean descent.
- Gay–Straight Alliance (GSA) – Group interested in equality for all.
- Francophone Organization for More Awareness of Global Equity (FROMAGE)-Group interested in raising money for causes in French-speaking countries as well as general awareness of the surrounding world.
- Korean Students Association (KSA)
- The Brothers – This group is focused on developing leadership, solidarity and support networks for male students of color.
- Muslim Students Association (MSA)
- Spanish and Latino/a Students Association (SaLSA)
- Whites Examining Racism and Culture (WERC) – An anti-racist group explores the racial and cultural identities of white Euro-Americans in the context of race relations in the U.S.
- Asian American Student Association (AASA)
- Jewish student Association (JSA)
Performing arts 
- Chamber Music Group
- Symphony Orchestra
- Chamber Orchestra
- Concert Band
- Concert Choir – has been performing NMH's Christmas Vespers yearly in different cities
- Jazz Ensemble
- Student-run a cappella groups: Northfield Mount Harmony (co-ed), Hogappella (all male), the Nellies (all female)
- NMH Dance Company and Junior Dance Company – three to four major productions a year
- NMH Singers
- Select Women’s Ensemble
- Theatre: Three to four major plays a year, one musical, and student-directed one-act festival
- World Music Combo
- World Music Singers (student run group)
Social concerns 
- Alliance for the Humane Treatment of Animals
- Campaign AIDS – Raises awareness and funds for women, girls, and children affected with the AIDS virus in Africa
- Gay–Straight Alliance(GSA)
- Campus Conservatives
Spiritual life 
- BREAKAWAY (NMH's largest Christian fellowship, meets weekly)
- Deacons of the Church of Christ (Protestant)
- Interfaith Council
- Jewish Student Union – provides support for Jewish life at boarding school; has weekly shabbat services and celebrates all major holidays.
- Korean Christian Fellowship
- Muslim Student Association
- Quaker Student Association
- Unitarian Universalist Student Association
- Spiritual Seekers
- Nature-Based Beliefs (Neo-Pagan)
- Native American, Hindu, and Buddhist groups are available if there is interest
Prominent alumni 
The following is a select list of notable alumni of Northfield Mount Hermon School sorted by graduation year. NMH has the largest living alumni population among all boarding schools in America, totaling more than 25,000 in 2011.
- Lee de Forest, 1893, controversial radio pioneer
- William G. Morgan, 1893, inventor of volleyball
- Pixley Seme, 1902, founder of the African National Congress
- Henry Roe Cloud, 1906, educator and government official
- DeWitt Wallace, 1907, founder of Reader's Digest
- Monroe W. Smith, 1919, founder of American Youth Hostels
- S. Prestley Blake, 1934, founder of Friendly Ice Cream
- Lawrence Ferlinghetti, 1937, poet
- Tad Mosel, 1940, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright for All the Way Home
- James W. McLamore, 1943, founder of Burger King
- William C. Pryor, 1950, Washington, D.C. Appellate Court Chief Judge
- David Hartman, 1952, television host
- William R. Rhodes, 1953, Chairman of Citicorp and Chairman Emeritus of the NMH Board of Trustees
- June Jordan, 1953, poet, professor of African American Studies, UC Berkeley
- J. Stapleton Roy, 1953, senior United States diplomat and ambassador to China, Indonesia and Singapore
- Edward W. Said, 1953, Palestinian American literary theorist and cultural critic
- Neil Sheehan, 1954, author
- Frank Shorter, 1965, Olympic runner
- William Ackerman, 1967, founder of Windham Hill Records and 2005 Grammy Award winner
- Natalie Cole, 1968, Grammy Award-winning vocalist
- Amy Domini, 1968, the "first lady of social investing"
- Dore Gold, 1972, former Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations
- Valerie Jarrett, 1974, Senior Advisor to Barack Obama
- Helen DeWitt, 1975, novelist
- Laura Linney, 1982, actress
- Buster Olney, 1982, sports writer
- Dylan Brody, 1982, humorist, author, comedian, playwright, and poet 
- Kim Raver, 1985, actress
- Arn Chorn-Pond, 1986, activist and musician
- Uma Thurman, 1988, actress
- Misha Collins, 1992, actor
- YaYa DaCosta, 2000, actress
- Kimmie Weeks, 2001, human rights activist; winner of the 2007 BR!CK award
- Dallas Baker, 2002, professional football player
- Colin Murphy (footballer born 1991), 2009, professional association football player
See also 
- Northfield Chateau
- Rob Buyea, NMH teacher and winner of a 2011 E.B. White Read Aloud Award for Because of Mr. Terupt
- Taylor Smith, "History of the Association," The Phillipian (Phillips Academy), February 14, 2008
- Monday, June 07, 1937 (1937-06-07). "Education: Berkshire Mystery". Time.com. Retrieved 2011-03-12.
- "So much to learn: The history of Northfield Mount Hermon School in commemoration of the 100th anniversary, 1980: Burnham Carter: Books". Amazon.com. 2009-09-09. Retrieved 2011-08-02.
- "Lift Thine Eyes | Northfield Mount Hermon". Nmhschool.org. Retrieved 2011-08-02.
- Student Activities office, NMH website
- Complete listing of clubs & organizations, NMH website
- "Prominent Alumni | Northfield Mount Hermon". Nmhschool.org. Retrieved 2011-08-02.
- "ABA Unveils 2011 Indies Choice and E.B. White Award Winners". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved 25 November 2012.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Northfield Mount Hermon School|
- Northfield Mount Hermon School – Official website
-  – Book Lift Thine Eyes, published 2010
- Book on the unsolved murder of Mount Hermon Headmaster Elliot Speer in 1934
- Death Comes for the Headmaster from the Malefactor's Register
- NMH Campus Map