When I got here, I honestly had no idea what I was getting into. The students from my school who had come here last year had told me that Maine Coast Semester at Chewonki was an amazing experience and they were super excited that I would be attending this semester. Even with this, I still thought that this would just be a school with people I didn’t know. I was completely wrong.
Starting day one, everybody showed up looking as nervous as I felt. As my cabin started filling up with parents asking where I was from, and as my future cabin-mates started to unpack after introducing themselves, I started to feel more and more comfortable. Minutes after I arrived in the cabin, I had received and accepted an offer to go exploring. We all meandered over to the waterfront, just sitting, talking, and watching the water roll by. By dinner time, I had realized that this was something special, more than just a school that I would be attending for the next few months. I know this sounds cliche, but this is a community.
During orientation, we had a number of group discussions on issues like trust and healthy relationships. I expected these to go poorly, without many people actually interested in talking, but I was pleasantly surprised when everyone chimed in. This made me realize how special the community actually is. Everyone actually wants to be here and to learn, and with a community of only 43 students, even just two weeks in it feels like we’ve all known each other for months. But this is only the start of the semester, and I can’t wait to see what happens in the next 3 months.
-Mekhi, Lakeside School, Seattle