Lifer Reflects on Time at Pace

(L-R) Taylor Biccum and current Pace seniors Amy Butler, Khaki Loughran and Molly Shapiro sit on a swing on the lower school playground in pre-first. Photo: Amy Butler

Looking back at my time at Pace, it’s crazy to think that it was 13 years ago that I timidly shook Mrs. V’s hand before heading into the Randall House for the first time, signaling that my adventure at Pace had begun. At this time, I was unaware of the impact that Pace would have on my life.

Throughout my long time here, there have been numerous changes to the school, both structurally and internally. The Lower School has been renovated, the Upper School was completely demolished and rebuilt and the Riverview Sports Complex was constructed to help further expand our athletics program. Furthermore, many beloved teachers and classmates have come and gone, leaving lasting memories in our hearts and minds.

Thirteen years is a long time, over half my life, to spend in the same place. However, as cliché as it sounds, 13 years has truly gone by in the blink of an eye. It’s hard to believe that I was the shamash in the Holiday Program 12 years ago, I went to Camp High Harbor to bond with my 20 new classmates seven years ago or that I paraded down West Paces Ferry and stormed into the FAC with my grade just a few months ago. There have undoubtedly been long nights filled with homework and stress, but alongside these have also been the formation of strong relationships with teachers and incredible friendships with the people I have grown up with.

After being asked numerous times, I have deeply thought about what I am going to miss the most about Pace. I have determined that the community aspect here at Pace is something I will forever be grateful for, and it’s this tightly knit community that truly makes Pace special. Whether it be the teachers, maintenance staff or the students, everyone is rooting for you and wants to help you out in any way possible to ensure your success.

This characteristic is something that is difficult to find at a college, let alone a different high school. Because of this, I truly encourage everyone to take advantage of everything Pace has to offer and reach out to all of the members of the Pace community and spend time with them. For example, Dean of Students and math teacher Gus Whyte arrives early every morning, waiting for students to come by. Although I usually bombard him with math questions, it’s always great to have a normal conversation with him, or any faculty member.

Another statement I have heard a lot throughout the course of my senior year is to leave high school without any regrets, which I definitely think is easier said than done. However, I have tried to live by this motto this year by spending as much time as possible with my friends and family. In addition, I went on an ICGL trip, participated in Model UN and joined lots of clubs throughout my four years in the Upper School. The opportunities that are available to us here at Pace are vast, and I am so glad that I was able to take advantage of so many of them.

I still have not come to terms with the fact that next year, I won’t be driving down West Paces past the Pace Castle and turning into the gates each week day. I won’t be hanging out in the Commons with my friends or spending time in the library studying for a test next period.

I’ll no longer be cheering for the Knights at football and basketball games, or spraying water all over my friends on GAP day. Nowhere else will I be able to dance in front of the whole school in a crazy costume for Spirit Week or navigate the pool in a cardboard boat in Phlotilla. Even though I will not be a student here at Pace next year, the experiences I have gained from this school will forever stay engraved in me.