Gratitude from the students at the end of Year 9 (2016-2017)
My name is India! I’m originally from Santa Fe New Mexico. I live with my mom Amy and my dog and cat – Dido and Cleo.
Here at Link we’ve been doing so much! It’s been really amazing. I didn’t grow up a Christian Scientist but I’m so thankful for the opportunity to learn and study it.
The academics at Link are really interesting this year and I have had a lot of fun learning. My favorite subjects at the moment are a tie between History and English class, but in all honesty, I enjoy all of them pretty much equally. In English class we just ended on the topics, The Harlem Renaissance and Modernism, which are both really cool and I really enjoyed writing my paper and reading about the Harlem Renaissance. In history we learned about America’s History and Government and we did a big section of this semester on women’s suffrage which I absolutely loved!!!!!
The Link School is really valuable to me in so many ways. Our programs this year have been unforgettable and have really allowed me to explore my interests and I discovered my love of climbing which I would never have had a chance to experience without Link in my life, I am so unbelievably thankful to be here and to have this community. Thank you.
I am Mallory. I am a graduating senior at The Link School. I started out the year wanting to find myself and being at Link has helped me to do that. I have used the experiences I have had here especial the field programs to grow in my understanding of myself and my relationship with my spiritual self. I am so grateful that I was able to be here at Link this year.
This year I loved going to church. At my previous Sunday school, I had a hard time being excited for church. I would wake up and feel like it was just another day. At Link I feel like every time I go to church I am gaining something. My Sunday school teacher has helped me to know that Christian Science can be my own and has helped me to find ways to put it into action in my life. I feel like she has changed my view on the religion as a whole and has really helped me to feel more spiritual. I also loved being on trips that landed on a Sunday. On our first trip we hiked over a pass and had Sunday school by a lake. We chose which class to be in based on the topic being spoken about. I loved this class. We talked so much and I really felt like I was leaning so much about myself.
Link was meaningful for me because it helped me to dive deeper into my spiritual well-being. Before I came here my well-being was something that really concerned me but I never gave much thought as to how my spiritual preparation for the day could affect me. I think that Link has taught me that no matter what I do, taking just 30 minutes in the morning to think by myself whether it be on the bible lesson on what has taken place that week my spiritual prep time is not something I should skimp on, for that I am so grateful.
And it is because of all these beautiful things that I must write to you and express how honored I am that you helped me to achieve all these things through your donation to my Link experience.
My name is Mathias. I am ending my sophomore year. I am writing to you to thank you for the generous donation you have given to The Link School. I really appreciate the chance to attend The Link School. I am turning 16 this summer and plan on returning next year. During this year, I have had the chance to become grow and prosper as an individual.
This year I have been able to expand my knowledge inside the classroom as well as in the outside world. In Spanish 3, I was able to continue my love for speaking in a different language. In climbing I was able to become stronger in lead climbing and participate in my first multi-pitch climb. In rafting I rowed my first class 3-4 rapids in an inflatable kayak. In Think Tank I have been able to expand on my understanding of the word around me and learn more about how to think through problems. In Algebra 2 I have been able to learn more about math and how different things work.
This year has really been a milestone for me. Last year I got into a lot of things that were bad for my health and for the community around me. The Link School gave me a second chance to show that I had grown over the summer. So, I came back and was able to prosper and be a positive part of the community. Thank you for believing in the vision of The Link School.
My name is Grace and I am a freshman here at Link. I’ve lived in Buena Vista since I was eight months old. I live with my parents, Joel and Laurie, our three dogs, Cricket, Marley, and Yoda, and our two goats.
I’ve grown up in a Christian Science household and am so grateful for the opportunity that Link has given me to grow spiritually and gain a better understanding of the religion. I have been able to challenge myself in many ways this year, be it physically or academically. At the beginning of the year, I was terrified of having to go on trips. I wasn’t very strong, physically or spiritually, so it was difficult to push myself in that way. Now that the year is coming to an end, I am confident in my abilities to succeed at whatever we do on trips and support myself spiritually.
I think that my favorite trip that we have gone on this year was the trip to Baja. The trip allowed us to somewhat explore a different culture, push ourselves physically, and grow closer as a community. I have also been able to push myself in academics this year, more so than I have been able to in the past. My favorite subjects are English and History, although I enjoy them all. This semester in English, we learned about Modernism, Realism, Naturalism, and different periods of literature like the Harlem Renaissance. As a final paper, we wrote about what we thought would be considered literature from modern day times in 50 to 100 years. We researched popular books in the past decade, found common themes in literature, and thought about how our culture has influenced the themes that are apparent in today’s literary scene. In History this semester, we studied Mark Twain, Mary Baker Eddy, and Augusta Tabor. We learned about their lives and looked at how their lives were connected, both with each other and national issues. For a final we wrote a first person account of a national event in the 19th century. I chose to write a short diary entry from the perspective of Sarah Emma Edmonds, a female spy and soldier that went undercover as a man during the Civil War. Overall, this year has been a year of challenging myself to be the best that I can be.
I am infinitely grateful for my year at Link. I have learned so much about Christian Science and have challenged myself to succeed more than I thought possible. Thank you.
I am beyond grateful for what you have put into me being able to attend here at The Link School. Attending Link has changed me to try and with everything to be able to do my best. My as you may know, my first year of high school (at BVHS) was not my best. I wasn’t doing well in school and I went through a lot of hard times with family and friends. At Link, I have learned many valuable lessons that I would like to continue to grow on, I have also done a lot better in school than I ever have in my past years of schooling. I have grown so many strong relationships with my peers that I will always remember and hopefully hold on to for the rest of my life.
Not only have I worked on doing better in school, but I have also been growing in my understanding of Christian Science. As you know, I am kind of new to Christian Science. I have been working on becoming stronger with my love and helping others to discover what living spiritually is truly about. At the beginning of the school year, I didn’t think that I would grow such a huge love for living spiritually and I have been working on leaning more and working through the problems that have come up over the year.
I will never forget my year at Link, and the upcoming years that I have. I cannot express how much gratitude I have for you guys. I have never been happier. I have always seen you guys as the loving and caring people that you are. It means so much to me on what you have done. I cannot wait to see you all again so that I can tell you about the many adventures I have gone over this year.
Thank you for everything,
Hi! My name is Imogen, and I have been attending The Link School this year. I’m from England so this was really stepping outside the box for me. I really enjoy things like art and pottery, I made some really fun pottery and painted a lot this year. It’s been awhile since I’ve had the chance to do something like that. I even made a dress! I really loved being able to do something like that freely. I was able to paint or sew, whatever I wanted and it was amazing.
We had so many amazing opportunities at Link, and always it was so fun and well put together. Our trip to Baja was such an amazing experience, to see animals like sea turtles or baby sea lions, things I never thought I would actually see! I guess it all comes down to you really, for helping this school do something so amazing for the students here, to see something we’ve never seen before. So I wanted to say thank you, for making this all possible, for helping us have such an incredible experience this year, it means more than you know.
Hi, my name is Brian Burr. I was born in Colombia and I was adopted six years ago. I am now from New Jersey with my two dads and my brother. This is my second year at The Link School.
I do many things here such as mountain biking, climbing, kayaking, snowboarding. My favorite thing is climbing, snowboarding and mountain biking, this year we went to the ride a 100-mile mountain bike ride on the White Rim Trail in Utah, which it was so much fun. We also went on a rafting trip on Green River. I also really like how we get taught going outside and seeing the things we have been learning in a class and then seen them in our trips.
It’s have been meaningful to me because I met many friends that I’m going to have for life. I have also been using Christian Science to work through challenges.
Hello I am Bryce Marmolijo. I am 16 years old and am a very shy person. I never really knew how to interact with others, so I basically just shut everyone out. I live in Ojai California with my mom, and coming out to the Rockies of Colorado a mile higher than I’m used to definitely took some adjusting. I’ve always liked doing the cool activities that we get to do here at The Link School, but I never was able to do those things where I lived and with the minimal amount of resources we had. So, I learned how do to things in a minimalists way, but coming out here and having access to all of these new things has given me the chance to learn so much more, and expand my views and really fly.
Things here that I have done, like be in these small concentrated classes, have given me the opportunity to actually learn the materials because in public schools where you’re in cramped classes of 35 its very hard to get a 1 on 1 interaction with your teacher when you don’t understand something. This last field program that we had really made me happy because of the sheer beauty of the river. It showed me how much more there is to the world.
On a spiritual level I most certainly have grown. I have always gone to Sunday school, but I don’t think I ever took all of it in. Here we are asked to engage more and try to understand what is going on, and I have a much more clear sight of what I should, and need to be doing now.
All of this was extremely meaningful to me because being in this tight community has taught me how to interact with people and not just ignore them because here you can’t just ignore others because you live with them. Also it has given me the chance to experience the world in so many ways, such as all of the trips we go on, and all of the cool interesting things that we learn in the field.
Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to come out here to this amazing place I get to call home.
My name is Lois. I’m a graduating student this year, and have spent five of my six semesters of high school at Link, and loved every one of them. Originally from Illinois, I’ve fallen in love with the mountains and canyons of Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico in the last three years. The growth I see in myself when I think about the kid I was when I came here, and who I am now, is amazing. I’ve become an outgoing, confident young woman with a passion for learning, helping others, the outdoors, and theater (though that part has nothing to do with Link, since we didn’t do many performing arts these last few years). I think the only other thing that should be included in a paragraph telling a little bit about who I am is that I love to laugh, and I’ve laughed more in the last three years than I could ever have imagined possible.
This semester, I showed up just in time to fly to Mexico with some friends from last year, a few fellow students I had met while I was visiting for Thanksgiving, and one total stranger who also happened to be a classmate. Those first few weeks made me realize that being able to become friends with anyone is a valuable skill, and just one of many my time at Link has given me. Along with people skills, I’ve learned practical skills in the outdoor setting. We’ve gone rock climbing, rafting, and backpacking. I’ve talked to teachers about Search and Rescue (SAR) and taken a Swift Water Rescue course. I’ve made mistakes, seen the benefits of SAR training in others, and learned from my mistakes. The most important thing I’ve learned though has been about myself. We were told to write a story about a challenge we overcame in Mexico, but I ended up writing about one I wanted to overcome that I hadn’t even realized was a problem. I began the process of forgiving my older sister for something I’ve been hurting over for the last decade with periodic new additions.
Anyway, I guess the reason I’m writing this the way I am instead of putting empty words on a page like I could to get this over with is because I want to say thank you, but I can’t if I don’t think you know what you’re being thanked for. I’m thanking you for bringing me out of my quiet shell. I’m thanking you for showing me the mountains and canyons. I’m thanking you for giving me the opportunity to see who I can be. I’m thanking you for all the things I’ve learned at Link, the memories I’ve made, the friends I’ve gained, the times I’ve laughed. I’m thanking you for the healings I’ve had, both physically and emotionally. I’m thanking you for making me who I am today by making it possible for me to have been at Link.
I sincerely thank you,
Lois Lynnette McClintick
My name is Kelvin. I am a sophomore here at Link. This is the end of my 2nd year here. I am really having fun. I enjoy mountain biking and white water kayaking the most. I also like playing drums to some songs I like.
All of the activities I did this year were really fun. My two most favorite programs I did this year are the White Rim mountain biking trip and the last trip of the year, paddling the Rio Chama in a hard-shell kayak.
I have also grown academically the two years I’ve been here. I am growing to like math a lot more than I was expecting (which is a good thing).
Here at Link I also feel more at home to healing. Everyone is more than willing to help. Every weekday morning we go to group lesson study, which helps me each day thinking of something that won’t let me down.
This school is super helpful in preparing me for my life. Almost every project and activity we do is has a purpose to it. This school has had a very big impact on my life in challenging me and having me grow as a person in almost every way possible.
Hello, I’m Eli Abbott and I am 19 years old from Worcester, MA and this is my third year at The Link School and I am senior here at Link. It has been such a blessing being able to be out here, also I love the atmosphere of love and support that is given here
The things that I really enjoyed that I have done here the last three years include all of the field programs, running, and skiing for the first time this year. On the field programs, I have striven to do the best that I can by helping out with supporting the group and doing the extra things to make the trip goes smoothly. I love helping out in any way that I can. Academics-wise my goal is to finish as strong as possible, this being my last semester of high school. I worked very hard to complete my school work to the best of my ability.
Spiritually I have grown to have a better understanding of what is the meaning and purpose in my life and what I can do to make a difference for good through prayer and action.
In the community, the most meaningful thing is that we all have a say in what we want to do and what we want to happen with things involving others in the community.
I love everything that we do here and everything has been meaningful.
The best thing from this year is when I was running the Collegiate Peaks Trail Run Marathon. I was giving people from school updates. I was congratulated by everyone that was still here at school at the finish line. This really made my day. I was able to finish the race, not with the time that I had a goal of 4:45:00, but I was able to finish with a time of 6:17:53. Before this run, the longest run that I have done was 14 miles, so I added an extra 12 miles to my distance. This was a good way to wrap of my school experience and a huge accomplishment.
Thank you so much for supporting me with my journey here at the Link.
I cannot express enough gratitude for the opportunity to come to The Link School. This has undoubtedly been the best year of my life and it wouldn’t have been possible without your support. I transferred to Link this year for my senior year and I couldn’t have been happier about my decision.
I am from Carmel, Indiana which is just outside of Indianapolis. Growing up I was about everything sports. I was always in season and always trying a different sport. I lived in Germany for three years of my life from 4th grade to 6th grade. I was able to travel to many different countries and have wonderful experiences. I went to high school for three years at a military academy in Indiana. I have also gone to Adventure Unlimited for 10 years and worked there as a CIT last summer.
As I said before, I was extremely satisfied with my choice to come to Link. I always really enjoyed team sports as a kid and at my old school, but I found that I liked the sports at Link better. I now have a passion for rock climbing, trail running, mountain biking, and whitewater kayaking.
I had a great time on all of the program trips we went on this year. There was definitely a lot that I had done before at A/U but I was still opened up to many experiences. These came mostly on the different trips we took. During second semester, the trips were very interesting. We got to go to Baja which was incredible. The Sea kayaking portion was my favorite on that trip. I also really liked being in Spanish class in Baja. We were fully immersed, which improved my Spanish a whole lot. We also got to do a river rescue course and an avalanche course. I enjoyed learning about things that will be helpful to me later in life.
In academics this year I was able to learn in a way that was perfect for me. Being comfortable with my teachers and in an experiential environment I was able to thrive in the classroom. I took Calculus this year which proved to be my hardest course. Even though it was a lot of work, I stuck with the long nights and was able to get a good grade in the class.
I grew an immense amount spiritually this year. On this last river trip I was able to coast in my boat and take in the scenery. I was able to reflect on the whole year and my whole life. It made me grateful for Christian Science. I was grateful that it has been such a significant part of my life. I wouldn’t have been able to do everything I did this year without Christian Science.
This year has allowed me to find my true self. I now know a lot about the person I am and the person I want to be. That wasn’t possible anywhere else. I got the opportunity to explore and reflect. I wouldn’t have gotten that opportunity at any other school.
Thank you again for all that you sacrifice to put students through this school.
Hi my name is Ben. I am in 11th grade, and I’m from Rhode Island. I love to be outside, to fish and play golf. I also love to learn things that I don’t know and The Link School has taught me a lot that I did not know before I came here.
There is a lot that I did this year that I would never do at any other school that I’ve been to. We went to the Lost Wonder Hut which is Bobby and Natalie’s cabin in the mountains. We learned procedures that need to be taken when in an avalanche terrain. We went to Baja, Mexico and practiced speaking Spanish, sea kayaked in the Sea of Cortez around some islands, swam with sea lions, and released sea turtles into the ocean. After doing all that I did, the thought came into mind that I am the luckiest kid in the world to go to this amazing school, and to have so many people that love me, like my mom, my teachers, and you.
I will never forget what Link has done for me and how much I have learned here and how much I will learn next year.
The Link School is so meaningful to me because I have learned the meaning of what it is like to grow and what it is like to be prepared for life and how to strive to be a better leader. It is also important to me because it is such a small community and we become so close and do everything together and support each other, and I love that. Also I love that whenever I go on a trip I learn a lot, and that allows me to apply those things to life. In my classes I have learned so much from my teacher and they have been so willing to help and be there for me and that means a lot to me. I hope I can come back next year and show them that I appreciate all that they have done for me and apply that for next year as my way of thanking you and them.
Gratitude from the students in the middle of Year 9 (2016-2017)
Hi, I am James Kerr and I am from Carmel, Indiana. This is my first year attending The Link School and I am a senior. I have been going to Adventure Unlimited (next door to Link) for 10 years now and that is where my love for the mountains in Colorado began. I love to be in the outdoors; I enjoy running, biking, climbing, rafting, kayaking, and snowboarding. When I was 9 my family moved to Germany for 3 years and we traveled all around Europe. While there I fell in love with traveling and gained a fascination for learning about other cultures. Link is the perfect fit for me allowing me to always being active in the outdoors, and soon by traveling internationally to Baja.
At Link students are given the opportunity to learn in the field in order to compliment what we learn in the classroom. I am a hands-on learner and Link has allowed me to excel. We were learning about hydrology and then we got to go rafting on the Green River. I was able to extend my learning into real life instead of just learning from power points and a book. In English we learned about leadership and then we had a discussion on “does gender impose limitations on leadership”. In an ordinary school I would’ve been nervous to get up and publicly speak in front of my teachers and my classmates. During this discussion I was comfortable speaking publicly, enabling me to practice my debating skills and my speaking skills without feeling too much pressure. For Social Studies -Immigration Issues we went down to the border and met with the border patrol, the mayor (American), and customs officials. I learned much more than I would’ve learned in a classroom. I was able to talk to people who are eyewitnesses to the issues. After that we went to the White Rim for a mountain biking trip. I was right at home and think that was one of the best trips I have ever taken in my life. Link has allowed me to have learning and outdoor experiences that I would never get at a traditional high school.
In the short semester I have been at Link I have grown immensely in all aspects of my life. I ran a marathon in November and I had to rely fully on the divine in order to finish the race. I also did a lot in preparation for this and I was always focusing spiritually. I grew a lot on the runs I went on because I probably wasn’t physically prepared for any of the runs that I went on. The only way I could do them and had fun doing them was to focus my thought Godward. With a strong spiritual foundation every morning I am able to have the knowledge and preparation to be spiritually orientated, not only running while running, but throughout every day. With classes so small I am able to be pushed out of my comfort zone in the classroom. The teachers know what I am capable so they expect me to exceed what I thought my limitations were. I am comfortable asking questions because I have close relationships with them. It was tough to leave my school junior year and to convince my parents to come to Link, but it has been the best decision I have ever made. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to come to Link and allowing me to become the best version of myself. I will be forever grateful to everyone who is supporting me spiritually and financially this year.
Hello! My name is Kaelyn Colizzo, and I am pleased to say that this is my second year attending The Link School. When I am not at Link, I live with my father, David, and his girlfriend, Renee, in Denver, or with my adopted family, Alex, her husband James, and my pseudo-siblings Cassie, Hannah, Isaac, Annalise, and Anthony in Centennial, Colorado. My life at school is exciting, for sure– but my life at home is hectic, to say the least. My youngest brother, Isaac, just turned five a few months ago, and loves– and I mean loves— to get into mischief wherever humanly possible, and my youngest sister Annalise, 10, certainly doesn’t get in his way. My little sister, Hannah, is currently attending Principia for her Sophomore year of high school and loving it, but loving holidays and breaks with the family even more. Finally, my two older siblings: Cassie, 18, and Anthony, 23, are both in school and trying to become independent, fully functioning members of society, which is a difficult task. In addition to my sprawling family, we have our dog, Missy, and a puppy in the near future, and two horses, Chicka-Marie, and Star. When I am not busy with the shenanigans that take place on the daily at home, or working hard at school, I love to read, watch movies, and ride my horse.
Being my second year at this unique school, I feel as though I have really gotten the hang of things and come into myself as a person, and have thoroughly enjoyed becoming a fixture in this wonderful community. Currently, I am taking Spanish II, Physical Science: Hydrology and Marine Biology, Honors Pre-calculus, and British and American Literature– all classes I love, and look forward to everyday. My favorite class is British American Lit, with its focus on leadership and the ways in which it’s applicable to society as a whole, and how that translates into writing. During project times, I take a free-choice Civil Rights class that I am thankful for the opportunity to take, and love learning about our nation’s tumultuous history, and the ways in which we can learn not to repeat our previous mistakes. My academic success is no doubt due to the tremendous amounts of support I receive from staff members, and the hands-on approach of the classes, which I would be hard-pressed to find anywhere else.
I cannot even begin to explain just how meaningful my time at Link has been to me. It has inspired me to gain confidence, speak my mind, and value my own self-worth by allowing me to be an active participant in our little community that is so, so dear to me. It is truly with the utmost gratitude and respect, that I write this letter to you today, because without you I would not be here having the time of my life in high school. Through Link I have found nothing but unconditional love, support, and acceptance, and I do not think there is any particular number of words I could string together that would fully convey the depth of my gratitude. Link has irreversibly changed me to my very core, and I am so glad that it has!
Hello, I am Beka Petersen and I live in Buena Vista, Colorado. I am attending The Link School. I am a sophomore this year. This is my first year attending The Link School and I have been enjoying all of the different expeditions that we have been on so far this year. I enjoy spending my time outdoors and trying out new things that I’ve never experienced before. While attending The Link School I have gotten much better at school and have been keeping good grades, also enjoying my classes that I’m currently taking.
In my classes I have many different projects and activities that I have been working on. My favorite class to attend is Science – Hydrology and Marine Biology. We have been focusing on the study of marine animals lately and that has been very fascinating to learn about. Currently we are all working on a sea turtle paper that we got assigned for our finals. The sea turtle that I have been focusing on is the Green Sea Turtle. We are writing a three-page essay on the threats to the turtle, their distribution, diet, habitat, etc. I have really enjoyed working on this final because I have learned so much that I never knew about on my species of sea turtle. Also, when we go on different expeditions I learn how I capable of anything that I set my mind too.
This year there have been many challenges that I have had to face throughout the school year. On all of the different trips that we have been on I have experienced new things. For our 100-mile biking trip on the White Rim Trail in Utah I didn’t think that I could ever be ready to try something so long and complicated. I was scared to even think about biking 100 miles in 4 days, but as soon as we began our trip I surprised myself with how capable I was to bike so hard and fast. There were moments that I struggled with about how much my legs would hurt or that I was too tired to continue the trip, but when I got back on my bike it was like nothing was wrong at all. I have grown with the community of the school and have been growing closer to the students that attend here. I have never thought so welcomed to a school before, and I am grateful that I am getting the chance to come to this school and try things that I’ve never done. I am very grateful that you sponsored me to go to this school and I have been enjoying my time that I have spent here.
Greatly appreciated, Beka Petersen
Hi! I’m Imogen, and I’m new this year. I’m 15 and a sophomore in school and I came here from England. Although this is my first year here, I have been visiting America for a long time, including summer camps since the age of seven, visiting relatives, and going to Principia last year. I grew up in a very squeezed-in community, with a lot of people who make bad choices from incredibly early on. Once I came to America, the environment was completely different, more enthusiastic and less hateful towards people. The opportunity of coming to Link seemed completely out of reach, and unlikely. Now I’m here and it’s completely different to what I ever imagined, it’s an amazing tight-knit, supportive community, with such a loving environment, that helps build up the character of each person.
Each month we go on these amazing trips and see something new every time. Our last trip was biking the White Rim, which was 100 miles, and each bit of the way there was always someone at your side, supporting you, and cheering you on. It is incredible to go on trips like these, seeing as most people back in England have hardly even gone to France (which is only about an hours boat ride)! Being here I have had some amazing once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. As you probably know, there is a project that each person does for the end of the year, and it’s getting to the point where people are choosing their projects and what they want to do for them. I have been sewing since I was a little girl and decided to choose it for my project, because I have the opportunity to do that. I have always hoped that I could become an artist in some way or another, and sewing is an incredibly fun thing that I wasn’t even sure that I had the means to do it with, and now I do, and I plan to make some beautiful things for my project.
There wasn’t much opportunity for me to be going to any schools in America this year. It didn’t even seem possible for both me and my brother to be able to go to summer camp this year. My mum has been saving up for a new car recently, and to get me to this school, she spent most of that money and gave up the idea of getting another car, all for me to come here, which, even if she had spent her money, we wouldn’t have been able to get me here without your help. It means so much that you have be kind enough to help me have this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I am incredibly grateful.
Much love – Imogen
I am from the sunny Ojai, California, I am 15 years old, and was raised in Christian Science but never really incorporated it into my daily life. I love being in the water; any form of it. Some things I enjoyed to do before I came here included hanging out with 2 friends in particular. We would just walk around town and do teenager things. Other than that I would be at home playing video games (which was a very poor choice, and I knew that). I had very poor grades because of this. So, when I started to go to The Link School 3 months ago, I sold my games and other things so I wouldn’t be able to use them and put things off like before. I have much fewer distractions now, a good scheduled week to follow, so I’m not just wandering aimlessly doing nothing productive, which is something I particularly like about going here.
As for classes, since they are much smaller than a public school, you are able to ask more questions and get to learn much more and have your input put into class discussions. In our Immigration Issues class we went down to the U.S./Mexico border to see what the border was really like. We also got to meet with customs officers, and the border patrolmen. It was very interesting to actually see the border and how big of a difference a few miles can make in changing the lives of people and environment. Then there is our science class where in January we get to go to Baja, California and learn about sea turtles, and Spanish. The expeditions we get to go on, like to go hike in the mountains, raft the Lodore canyon, mountain bike 100 miles in Utah, all of those activities are so fun because you get to grow spiritually, see nature, and just have that peace and quiet away from the city.
Being here in this new community where you can’t just avoid everybody, but you have to interact and talk, helps you learn about the people you live with since you see them every day. Building those connections with those around you, not just the students, but the teachers also, and being able to have that help when you need it is great. You’re not lost and you have a guided path to follow. Like I said before, I never really incorporated Christian Science into my daily life, but here every morning we have spiritual study which has taught me a lot about Christian Science, especially on our expeditions we use it a lot there when we have that quiet time to ourselves to think and do what we need to is great.
Thank you for helping me and my family let me go here by paying for part of my tuition, I promise you I will not waste this chance you have given me.
My name is Benji. Thank you for sponsoring me. I can’t begin to tell you how grateful I am for how this school has been a life changing experience for me. Some things about me – I’m from Rhode Island and I love to fish and play golf. I also like to do construction and I like to working with wood. This is nice because there’s a lot of wood here. This will help me in life when I’m installing cabinets or working on installing them in someone’s house or even my future house. I also love being outdoors and reading about motorcycles and cars especially from circa 1970s. The support in this loving community with school work and in general is nothing I have ever experienced in any other school before. It’s a pretty awesome thing to have experienced and thank you.
The things that I have learned are remarkable –it seems to me that the list goes on forever. My favorite classes, hmm let’s see – all of my classes! That’s pretty rare for me to say that I like all of my classes, but I would have to be pretty crazy not to like all of my classes with the support from my teachers. Before I came here there were a lot of things I didn’t know about and I learn something new in each of my classes every day. For example, for science class we are learning about sea turtles and the different kinds of species for our trip to Baja Mexico. I can say I’ve not done that kind of stuff at any of my other schools.
This school has had a huge impact on me because of the relationships with my teachers I feel like I can tell them anything and they’ll be there to support me. Also the trips that I’ve been on are breathtaking and I will never forget them. Not only that but I’ll be able to tell my friends at home the things I did at my school and I’ll probably talk about being at this wonderful school all summer. Thank so much for making this possible and I look forward to meeting you.
Much Love, Benji Nickol
Hi, I’m Kelvin, I’m 16 years old. I am a sophomore this year at school. This is my second year at Link. I really like outdoor activities, like mountain biking, and whitewater kayaking.
I’ve been doing really well in my classes, I’ve been learning a lot while doing projects, for instance, I’m building a treehouse for my POL (Project of Learning) and I learned how to get a frame into a tree and secure it. The program activities are really fun and educational. My favorite class is science class because I’m learning all about sea turtles right now which is my favorite animal. I am also enjoying math class a bit. Bryan, my math teacher, works to help me be successful.
The most meaningful thing to me here at school is the community here. It’s a community that includes, helps, and teaches everyone. I value Link because I’ve learned and grew so much since my first year. All of the staff here are meaningful to me, they challenge me to grow in my abilities. I also learn interesting stuff.
Hi, my name is Brian Burr. I was born in Colombia and I was adopted five years ago. I am now from New Jersey, where I live with my dads and my brother. This is my second year at The Link School.
I do many things here such as mountain biking, climbing, kayaking, snowboarding. My favorite thing is mountain biking and this year we went to the ride a 100-mile mountain bike ride on the White Rim Trail in Utah, which it was so much fun. We also went on a rafting trip on the Green River. I’m really excited for the international trip because we are going to be learning about sea turtles and lagoons. I am also excited to get a chance to practice my Spanish.
It’s have been meaningful to me because I met many friends that I’m going to have for life. I have also been using Christian Science to work through challenges.
Hello I’m Eli Abbott and I am 18 years old, from Worcester, MA and this is my third year at The Link School. I am a senior here at Link. It has been such a blessing being able to come here. I love the atmosphere of love and support that is given here.
Things that I have been doing with The Link School have been skiing, running, mountain biking, and whitewater rafting. These are some of my favorite things that I have found myself loving. I ran a half Marathon this last fall and also the Sleeping Indian Hill Climb that was 5.7 miles. For my senior project I am running the Colligate Peak Trail marathon. I really enjoy rock climbing and I really love the trips that we go on. In science, I love what we are learning about – right now we are learning about sea turtles and doing our own research paper about a specific turtle.
I love everything that we do here and everything has been meaningful. Spiritually I have grown to have a better understanding of what is the meaning and purpose in my life and what I can do to make a difference for good through prayer and action. In the community the most meaningful thing is that we all have a say in what we want to do and what we want to happen with things involving our community. Academically, I have had some trouble with not finding enough time to complete the homework or things at hand, so I am talking with a practitioner and she gave me some thoughts to work with. Thank you so much for supporting me with my journey here at Link.
Sincerely , Eli Abbott
My name is India Espeset-Morrison and I have been attending The Link School for two years. I am originally from Santa Fe, New Mexico. I live with my mom, Amy and our dog and cat. My hobbies include (but are not limited to) gardening (and being wildly unsuccessful), cooking pretty much anything, baking bread (it’s finally starting to come out of the oven looking like bread), listening to music, reading all manner of books, however I’m specifically interested in books about chefs (are you sensing a theme?), and finally watching movies about chefs. I love the outdoors and attend a canoe tripping summer camp in Ontario.
I was drawn to Link because they combined learning, spiritual growth and the wilderness. We have been doing many interesting things at Link this year – science has been especially interesting as we have been learning about hydrology and marine biology, which often go hand in hand. Recently we have been writing conservation papers about sea turtles. The sea turtle I have been researching is the Hawksbill Sea Turtle, and I have found many ways to help this species survive, which has been really cool to learn about. British and American Literature has taught me a lot. So far this year we have read Macbeth, The Distance Between Us, a collection of essays by Sir Francis Bacon, and multiple other writers from the renaissance and onwards. I have really enjoyed English this year, since we combined the current events of today with the literature of the past. American Government has been especially interesting this year, since we got to experience the election while learning about what made this happen.
In my opinion Link was one of the most important things to ever happen to me, I learned to do things I would never had experienced, I learned that my favorite sport is not lacrosse but rock climbing, I learned the God is Love, and that I can be a spiritual person. Before Link I had never entered a church in my entire life. Now I carry my Science and Health wherever I go. I am so thankful for everything this place has done for me, and for you for providing this amazing experience for me.
My name is Grace and I am from Buena Vista, Colorado. I am 13 years old and a freshman at The Link School. I was raised in Buena Vista but born in Kentucky. I love reading and writing, therefore, my favorite subject is English. I have traveled to nine countries and would like to travel more. My dad is the Mayor of Buena Vista and my mom is a yoga instructor. Both of my parents studied Holistic Management under Alan Savory, so I have grown up aware of the climate change that affects the planet.
We have gone on many trips this year including a 100-mile bike trip, a week-long river trip, and a backpacking trip. I think that so far, my favorite trip was the rafting trip. Everyone knew each other, but we bonded as a group more and learned more about each other. When not on a trip, we have normal high school classes. In Science, we are learning about hydrology and marine biology. At the moment our focus is on sea turtles. Before our river trip, we were learning about different fish in the Green River and wrote a paper on the species that we were studying. Now we are learning about sea turtles and writing a paper about them in preparation for our trip to Baja in January. In English, we are focusing on Humanism and leadership. Recently we had a debate on whether or not gender imposes limits, specifically on leadership. Because of this debate, I was able to put myself in other people’s shoes and see a different side of an argument that I had felt confident about my opinion in before. We are now writing a satirical essay or short story about issues that are affecting us in our modern-day society. I am in Algebra 1 as well as Spanish 1.
This year I have grown a lot. At the beginning of the year, I didn’t have many good friends and was not challenged in the public school. So far I have made friends with all of the students here and am able to challenge myself more. I have moved to a more difficult English and Science class and am not as bored as I was last year. This year I have been able to mature, both physically and metaphysically. It has meant a lot to me that I have been able to make lifelong friends and grow as a person.
Love, Grace Benson
My name is Mathias Fanta. I am 15 and in my sophomore year of high school. I love being a part of The Link School community. I appreciate what you do for our school. The Christian Science approach to school is a wonderful part of the curriculum. Throughout this year and last year I have striven to improve myself in many ways, athletics, academics, as well as spiritually.
In science class we do a number of different things. So far this year we have looked at behaviors of fish, sea turtles, marine life, the list continues. To look at these different things we have done things like going to a fish hatchery to look at how that works. In English we read an outstanding book called Cry the Beloved Country. Throughout that process, we looked at what life was like in the apartheid, social injustices, writing papers about themes that center the book, and creating poster board presentations to show differences from then and now.
In the class Immigration Issues we looked at what happens on the border, and studied the legalization processes, and social injustice. As a final to the class, we wrote a letter to a make-believe special someone in south or Central America. The letter was a final show of what we had learned over the past semester. We tried to convince that special someone to cross the border, or not to cross, from the information we had learned.
The Link School has been a huge part of my life in the past year and a half. I have been able to take advantage of all the ways staff can help. Whether it be academic, spiritual, or physical challenges, there is help at every turn. The student atmosphere is also very helpful. As a group of thirteen students, we become family away from home. We support each other and are striving to be a comfort to one another. My time at Link is something I will remember for a long time. The people I have met will never be forgotten, and the growth I have made will make me a better person forever.
Sincerely, Mathias Fanta
I am Mallory and am a senior here. I am really enjoying the activities that I am getting to try. I had never really climbed on real rocks before I got to school and it was so cool. I am working on reaching the top of my first climb. I am also enjoying horseback riding. I had ridden before I came to school but was unable to continue because I went to another boarding school where it wasn’t an option. I loved the horseback riding trip. It was really cold but I got pretty close with the girls who did it with me.
I love my science class. We are learning about sea turtles and this is something that I really like. I always loved the ocean and to be able to study it is really fun. I am doing a research paper for my final on the Leatherback sea turtle and It has been really informative. I think that for my senior project I may continue to study sea turtles and maybe even go back to Baja! I have also done some research on other sea turtle conservation institutions and there is one in North Carolina and that is where I am planning on spending my summer! So now I have an idea of something to do over the summer.
Link has helped me to find a Sunday School teacher that I really connect with. My teacher is an amazing woman. She has made me really interested in Christian Science. I have studied this topic my whole life but making it my own has been really hard. She made it easy for me to do that. She made this game for my Sunday School class to play where she had a box with different names for God and we had to use different topics to help the other students guess what the name was. There was “What Color Was This Name for God?”, “What Sound?”, “What Feeling?”, and many others. I felt that this helped me to see God more clearly in my everyday life. She really illuminates all the things that I find most difficult and turn them into a clear idea that I can put into action in the activities that we do.
Since going on our first hiking trip I have felt such a strong sense of community with the girls. I feel as though we have all really come together. I have been looking for a strong community in which I feel welcome, and I think that Link has provided that. I had a hard time feeling it at my past two high schools but I feel like Link has gone above and beyond with its strong community and I love that we all try our best to make it a true democracy.
Thank you so much for making it possible for me to be a part of this amazing community that has helped me to grow so much both physically and spiritually. I can’t wait to continue here next semester and see what new strengths I’m building on come to fruition by the end of the year.