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Phillips Exeter Academy was established in Exeter, New Hampshire, in 1781 by Elizabeth and John Phillips. John Phillips had made his fortune as a merchant and banker before going into public service, and financially supported his nephew Samuel Phillips, Jr. in founding his own school, Phillips Academy, in Andover, Massachusetts, three years earlier. As a result of this family relationship, the two schools share a rivalry. The school that Phillips founded at Exeter was to educate students unde...
On April 9, 1930, philanthropist and oil magnate Edward Harkness wrote to Exeter Principal Lewis Perryregarding how a substantial donation that Harkness would make to the academy might be used to fund a new way of teaching and learning: The result was "Harkness teaching", in which a teacher and a group of students work together, exchanging ideas and information, similar to the Socratic method. In November 1930, Harkness gave Exeter $5.8 million to support this initiative. Since then, the acad...
The academy became coeducational in 1970 when 39 girls began attending. In 1996, to reflect the academy's coeducational status, a new gender-inclusive Latin inscription Hic Quaerite Pueri Puellaeque Virtutem et Scientiam ("Here, boys and girls, seek goodness and knowledge") was added over the main entrance to the Academy Building. This new inscription augments the original one—Huc Venite, Pueri, ut Viri Sitis("Come hither boys so that ye may become men").
Exeter uses an 11-point grading system, in which an A is worth 11 points and an E is worth 0 points. Exeter has a student-to-teacher ratio of about 5:1. A majority of the faculty have advanced degrees in their fields.Students who attend Exeter for four years are required to take courses in the arts, classical or modern languages, computer science, English, health & human development, history, mathematics, religion, and science. Most students receive an English diploma, but students who take the full series of Latin and Ancient Greek classes receive a Classical diploma.
For the 2019–20 school year, the Exeter student body included students from 44 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and 31 countries. Students of color comprise 46.6% of the student body (Asian 30.8%, Black 12.3%, Hispanic/Latino 9.4%, Native American 1.6%). Legacy studentsaccount for 13% of the students. Of new students entering in 2019 (a total of 314), 52% attended public school and 48% attended private, parochial, military, home, or foreign schools. Most Exeter students—80 percent—live on campus in dormitories or houses. The remaining 19 percent of the student body are day students from the surrounding communities. The academy uses a unique designation for its grade levels. Entering first-year students are called Juniors (nicknamed "preps"), second-year students are Lower Middlers ("lowers"), third-year students are Upper Middlers ("uppers"), and fourth-year students are seniors. Exeter also admits postgraduate students ("PGs").
Tuition and financial aid
Tuitionfor boarding students in 2018-19 was $55,000, plus other mandatory and optional fees. Exeter offers need-based financial aid. For families with incomes less than $75,000, Exeter is free. Partial assistance is available for families with incomes up to $200,000. Admissions are currently need-blind.In 2018, approximately 50 percent of students received a total of $21 million in financial assistance.
Exeter's endowment as of June 30, 2017, was valued at $1.3 billion. This is the third-highest endowment of any American secondary school, behind the $11.0 billion endowment of Kamehameha Schools in Hawaii, and the $13.7 billion of the Milton Hershey School in Pennsylvania.Phillips Exeter Academy's operational budget was $107 million as of 2018.
1. The Academy Building is the fourth such building. It was built in 1914 after a devastating fire ruined the third. The Academy Building was designed by Ralph Adams Cram of Cram, Goodhue & Ferguson, and houses the History, Math, Religion and Classical Languages departments, along with a small but significant archaeology/anthropology museum.Two wings were added to the original structure in the 1920s and 1930s during a building boom that was orchestrated by Principal Lewis Perry. One of these...
1. The George H. Love Gymnasium was built in 1969, and is named for George H. Love (1917). It houses squash facilities with 10 international sized courts, one swimming pool, three basketball courts, a weight-training room, a sports-science lab, gym offices, two hockeyrinks, locker rooms, and visiting team locker rooms. 2. The Thompson Gymnasium was built in 1918, replacing the old gym which was demolished in 1922, and was a gift of Colonel William Boyce Thompson(1890). It has a basketball cou...
1. Phillips Church was originally built as the Second Parish Church in 1897 and was purchased by the academy in 1922. The building was designed by Ralph Adams Cram. Although originally a church, the building now contains spaces for students of many faiths. It includes a Hindu shrine, a Muslim prayer room and ablutions fountain, a kosherkitchen, and a meditation room. Services that are particular to Phillips Church include Evening Prayer on Tuesday nights, Thursday Meditation, and Indaba—a rel...
Exeter offers 65 interscholastic sports teams at the varsity and junior varsity level, 27 intramural sports teams, and various fitness classes. All students are required to participate in athletics. Water polo, wrestling, swimming, cycling, soccer, squash, cross country, crew, and ice hockey teams have won recent New England championships. Exeter has graduated multiple elite athletes in the past few decades. For example, crew Olympians include Anne Marden '76, Rajanya Shah '92, Sabrina Kolker '98, and Andréanne Morin '02. Georgia Gould is an Olympic medalist in mountain biking, while Joy Fahrenkrog is a member of the United States Archery Team. Duncan Robinson plays for the Miami Heat in the National Basketball Association. Tom Cavanagh played in the National Hockey League. Sam Fuld played 8 years of Major League Baseball, and became the General Manager of the Philadelphia Philliesin 2020. Exeter's main rival is Phillips Academy (Andover). The two schools have been competing against...
Exeter had a gendered dress code until June 2015.Boys were required to wear collared shirts and ties or turtlenecks. Girls were required to wear non-revealing, appropriate attire. Skirts and shorts must reach finger-tip length, and straps may not be less than two fingers wide. Jeans were allowed for boys and girls; however, "hoodies," graphic T-shirts, and athletic wear are not permitted. The new dress code is gender neutral, and no longer requires ties. Dress code is required only in the classroom setting and Assembly. The academy has over 100 clubs listed. The number of functioning and reputable clubs fluctuates; several of the listed clubs on the website do not hold tables on Club Night. The Exonian is the school's weekly newspaper. It is the oldest continuously running preparatory school newspaper in the United States, having begun publishing in 1878. Recently, The Exonian began online publication. The Exonian has been a finalist for a National Pacemaker Award several times, win...
Exeter has struggled to deal effectively with multiple incidents in which students were sexually abused by faculty and staff. An incident of sexual misconduct that occurred in the basement of the church in late 2015 first brought criticism to the school. A more in-depth investigation by an outside law firm uncovered sexual misconduct that occurred at Exeter since the 1970s and involved at least 11 members of the faculty and staff. The report harshly criticized the school for not supporting the victims when they reported the incidents and for a pattern of not including these allegations in the faculty members' files. In April 2016, Exeter hired a law firm of Holland & Knight LLP to investigate allegations of past misconduct by Exeter faculty and staff. A report was released in August 2018 providing an overview of the investigation and the findings of Holland & Knight LLP. Through this process, Holland & Knight was assigned and completed 28 investigations. Of those 28 matters, 26 invo...
Exeter has two chief symbols: a seal depicting a river, sun and beehive, incorporating the academy's mottos; and the Lion Rampant. The seal has similarities to that used by Phillips Academy—an emblem designed by Paul Revere—and its imagery is Masonic in nature. A beehive often represented the industry and cooperation of a lodge or, in this case, the studies and united efforts of Academy students. The Lion Rampant is derived from the Phillips family's coat of arms, and suggests that all of the...
School colors and the alumnus tie
There are several variants of school colors associated with Phillips Exeter Academy that range from crimson red and white to burgundy red and silver. Black is also a color associated with the school to a lesser extent. The official school colors are lively maroon and gray. The traditional school tie is a burgundy red tie with alternating diagonal silver stripes and silver lions rampant.
Early alumni of Exeter include US Senator Daniel Webster (1796); John Adams Dix (1809) a Secretary of the Treasury and Governor of New York; US President Franklin Pierce (1820); physician and founder of Sigma Pi Phi Henry McKee Minton (1851); Abraham Lincoln's son and 35th Secretary of War Robert Lincoln (1860); Ulysses S. Grant, Jr. (1870); Richard and Francis Cleveland; "grandfather of football" Amos Alonzo Stagg (1880); Pulitzer Prize-winning author Booth Tarkington (1889) and Hugo W. Koehler (1903), American naval spy during the Russian Revolution and step-father of United States Senator Claiborne Pell. John Knowles, author of A Separate Peace and Peace Breaks Out, was a 1945 graduate; both novels are set at the fictional Devon School, which serves as an analog for his alma mater. Exeter alumni pursue careers in various fields. Other alumni noted for their work in government include Gifford Pinchot, Lewis Cass, Judd Gregg, Jay Rockefeller, Kent Conrad, John Negroponte, Bobby Shr...
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- 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
- October 31, 1994 (aged 14)
- Right-handed (two-handed backhand)
- W (2008)
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