Don’t Let the Feeling Fade
By Clare Ogle, an MHS houseparent
In addition to my houseparenting duties, I have the privilege of helping with New Spartan Academy. This is the program that all new students go through when they enroll at MHS and arrive on campus. As a chaperone, I take new students around campus, help them get acclimated, answer some of their questions, and share interesting facts about the school and our history.
But I have to be honest—I get just as much out of New Spartan Academy as the students do! I love watching them take in our campus for the first time. Our campus is gorgeous during the fall. It practically glows with bright colors from the trees and fields, and the sunsets are stunning.
I also enjoy watching the students learn all that MHS has to offer. Our Career and Technical Education Program is awesome, and our students can get certified in numerous industries while they’re in high school.
We even have a clothing center on campus. One of the first things our new students do is get fitted for clothes. They receive new school clothes, play clothes, shoes, chapel wear, and much more. Usually, the new students return to New Spartan Academy the next day proudly wearing their new Spartan gear! I love seeing them join our family and take part in the culture we have here on campus.
It’s also fun to show them around campus and meet so many friendly staff members. There are lots of stories to share and connections to be made— it really helps new students feel welcome.
Every time I participate in New Spartan Academy, I’m filled with a sense of pride as I show off our school and the place I call home. I learn something new each time.
When my husband and I first came to MHS, I remember looking around campus and taking in all the beauty. While I still think it’s wonderful, it’s great to be reminded by those who are seeing it for the first time. I never want to forget how blessed we are to be here, how amazing the Hersheys were, and the privilege it is to be a part of the Milton Hershey School mission.