Student Life

When you ask current students about their favorite time of the day on The Frederick Gunn School campus, they invariably talk about time spent with friends, whether they are hanging out in the dorm or creating their own fun outside. School days are busy. Students move from academic and co-curricular commitments to dinner and evening study hall. But there are opportunities for friends to gather throughout the day. It might be grabbing a table together for lunch in the dining hall, hosting a movie night in your dorm room, or meeting up for an impromptu baseball game on the Quad, spikeball on the turf, or sledding on the hill behind Teddy House in winter.

Weekend activities include Open Skate and Open Hockey times at Linen Rink, trips to the Danbury Fair Mall and other local shopping centers, movie theaters, and area restaurants as well as the ever-popular Arethusa Farm Dairy for ice cream. Sign-ups are available for excursions to try bowling or visit a trampoline park, and some weekends are just good for sleeping in and going to brunch in the dining hall, where chocolate chip waffles and a fruit and yogurt bar are usually on offer. Students can also take advantage of dances, the fitness center, open gym times, seasonal activities (carve your own pumpkin, anyone?), movie screenings and guest performances right on campus, and cheer their fellow Highlanders at home.

Student Life News

“Hermosa,” by Anna Gleason ’23

On Sunday, ASAP! will host its 11th annual Celebration of Young Photographers in Washington Depot with an exhibit that includes six original photographs by five students from The Frederick Gunn School. Oliver Chen ’22, Winifred Ezenwata ’22, ​​Anna Gleason ’23, Clari Leonard ’22 and Sarah Zhang ’24 were among the finalists selected this year by a panel of professional photographers through a blind judging process.

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

The Frederick Gunn School Theatre Program is excited to present the Connecticut Premiere of “The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane,” adapted by Dwayne Hartford based on the book by Kate DiCamillo, and directed by Kent Burnham, Director of Theatre Arts. Performances will be held at 7 p.m. on November 11-12 in the Tisch Family Auditorium of the Thomas S. Perakos Arts and Community Center. The play will also be available on Saturday at 7 p.m. via livestream for those unable to attend in person.

2021 School Walk Continues Tradition, Celebrating Mr. Gunn and his Love of Nature

On October 7, faculty and students gathered on the Koven-Jones Glade for the All-School Walk, a beloved Frederick Gunn School tradition, begun by Mr. Gunn in 1861. The weather for this year’s walk was sunny and warm, with a slight, intermittent breeze that sent the first yellow leaves fluttering from their branches. The Shepaug River was running fairly high and during quieter moments, one could hear the sound of the water rushing along. It was, in the words of Dan Fladager, Director of Outdoor Programs, “a beautiful day to gather as a school and celebrate our founder’s birthday and the beautiful area we call home by walking together in fellowship and community.”

Happy birthday Frederick Gunn

October 4th marked the 205th birthday of abolitionist, outdoorsman and school founder Frederick Gunn. In 2016, the school commemorated Mr. Gunn’s 200th birthday with a grand celebration that included an exhibit at the Judy Black Memorial Park & Gardens. This year, Head of School Peter Becker marked the occasion at School Meeting by sharing an excerpt from the eulogy the Rev. Henry Ward Beecher delivered on October 4, 1882, a little over a year after Mr. Gunn’s death. Friends and alumni gathered at the school the night before, and in the morning, filled the Meeting House on the Green. 

Marc Morial

Speaker Series Welcomes National Urban League President Marc Morial

On September 23, The Frederick Gunn School welcomed Marc Morial, who since 2003 has served as President and CEO of the National Urban League,  the nation’s largest historic civil rights and urban advocacy organization, as the first featured guest in our 2021 Speaker Series. Morial was introduced to the school by Trustee and former Board Chair Jonathan S. Linen ’62, who formerly served as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the National Urban League, and whose father, the late James A. Linen III P’62, was the National Urban League Board President in the 1960s. 

ead of School Peter Becker delivers the welcome address at Convocation in the Tisch Family Auditorium of the Thomas S. Perako

The entire community gathered together in person for Convocation on September 11, formally marking the beginning of our 172nd year as a school. “A new year in a boarding school is an incredible opportunity to recreate our community based on our history, our mission, and our Core Values,” Head of School Peter Becker said in his welcome address. “It is the same as when Mr. and Mrs. Gunn welcomed about 12 students into their home in 1850 to create a learning community – a learning ecosystem –  out of the diverse group of people living and learning in close proximity to each other.”

Living with Friends

Getting Involved 

Weekend Activities

Health and Wellness

Dining at FGS

Community Traditions

For New Students