A Day In The Life: Marymount New York City

Georgina Grant '15, Staff Writer

We got an inside look at the lives of Anne Vallot-Basker and Ana Gayol-Cintron, two seniors at Marymount High School in New York.

Interviewed by Georgina Grant and Paula Sison.

What is a typical day in your life like?

Anne: I usually wake up at 6:30, dress, and eat breakfast, I always end up running late no matter how early I leave, so I try to leave my house between 7:15 and 7:30.  I take the bus and subway to school and hope everything runs on time.  Run to wherever I’m meeting or have my advisory period because I’m always running in right at 8:00 because we have to be in our designated meeting spot at eight.  That’s a new addition; last year it was 8:15.  After that, I just go class to class, and then, depending on the day, I’ll either have sports after school or Model UN.

Ana: For me, it’s almost the same thing, and then you go home and do homework until God knows what hour.  Sometimes, if you really wanted to, you could really work all night, but we try not to do that.  Mine is the same as Anne’s minus the sports, but I have other clubs and stuff.

How many classes do you have?

Anne: Eight – there are six main classes: English, History, Science, Math, Foreign Language, Ethics (half a course), which is a religious course and only meets half the time.

Ana: And some people choose to take a second language, an arts class, or Marymount Singers.

Do you have free periods?

Anne: Yes.  I probably have two free periods a day.

What is your uniform like?

Ana: Plaid skirt for the winter uniform, and blue cord skirt for the spring and the fall.  And we’re allowed to wear for tops: pink, black, navy blue, regular blue, white, and gray, as well as sweaters.

Anne: And sneakers are the newest addition as of maybe two weeks ago.  Before, we could only wear blue, black, or brown ballet flats with knee high socks, ankle socks, or tights, so sneakers are a pretty exciting addition for us.

Are teachers strict about skirt length?

Anne: I think it depends on the teacher, it depends on the skirt length, and it depends on the person.  We do live in the city, we do take public transportation which is one of my reasons for not wearing a really short skirt because not only do I have to be in school but I have to be walking around Manhattan and the subways which I don’t feel comfortable with doing [wearing a skirt that is too short].  We also have a pants option, which most people don’t take advantage of

Ana: Every Friday, seniors get free dress, but it has to be very appropriate.

Anne: No studs, no leggings, no denim.

Ana: It’s basically called business casual.

Anne: It’s nice to have that freedom, but it is restrictive in what we can wear.

What does your school offer for lunch?

Ana: We’re a very small building right now, the Middle School has a full-fledged lunch, but for the Upper School, we have a little salad bar.  Most people go out or they bring their own lunch.  I mean it’s not something that we can complain about because we are close to places like Dean and Deluca, which is a high-end deli.

Anne: It gets expensive to buy lunch, so you either bring lunch from home or take advantage of the salad bar, which is a new addition.  It’s really nice.

Ana: We can go out for lunch, and seniors can go off for 90 minutes, at most, during our frees.

What are your favorite student activities?

Ana: I think we both can say Model UN.

Anne: I enjoy field hockey a lot. We’re both on Model UN and we’ve both been on it since freshman year.  I really like it a lot, but I might have to put field hockey a little bit higher than Model UN.

Ana: For me, that’s Mock Trial.  Mock Trial is my thing — I love it! And we have the Met Club this year, which just came out and my friend and I are the presidents of, and basically we go to the Met every Friday and see a new exhibit. It’s kind of a leisure activity because we to the Met sometimes for classes, but you have to take notes and it’s rigorous, but we kind of made this for people to enjoy art and walk around.  That’s a new addition we have to take advantage of the opportunities we have being so close to the Met.

Do you have Spirit Week?

Ana: We used to! We probably will have it this year.  We have a weird one.  There’s no Spirit stick.  We have one where we dress as our teachers.  It’s a week where you do silly things.

Anne: We have pajama day, which always gets weird anyway.  We have teacher day, where you dress as a teacher and then the teachers dress how they used to dress in high school.  You can wear your athletic uniform to school one day.

How do you meet boys?

Ana: Well, freshmen year, our PALS, which is our Peer Assistant Leaders (they’re seniors and juniors for the ninth grade, kind of mentors), they had a mixer with an all-boys school next to us.  It was at this sushi place and it was a complete fail, but it was a good try.  Another place to meet boys is the play.

Anne: I went to an all-girls school before this as well, but I try to find boys outside of the school setting, like there’s this guy in my building who goes to the school Ana was talking about across the street.  They introduce us to their friends, and we introduce them to our friends.

Ana: Through Model UN, too.

What are your dances like?

Ana: I think in our generation things have changed a lot when it comes to dating, and it’s very indirect and with social media things have changed with meeting boys, so when it comes to dancing, I don’t think you can really meet someone on the genuine level.

Anne: No, you really can’t.

Do you ever get to wear free dress?

Anne: We have Denim days.  So on your birthday you get to wear free dress, and then on Denim Days you pay five dollars for Zimbabwe and you can wear blue jeans, but you have to wear a uniform shirt.

Ana: We have one for Sandy this Friday.  We had one for Zimbabwe last Friday.

Do you go on field trips? If so, where?

Ana: It depends on the class.  I know, in atmospheric science we had something planned, but because of Sandy, things are kind of messed up.  In my art history class, we were going to go to the MOMA.  Again, Sandy messed up that plan.  And the Holocaust Museum — that’s a senior trip.

Anne: In Washington D.C.

Ana: We have retreats, which are a grade bonding experience.

Anne: We went to a mosque in ninth grade.

Do you have Spring Break trips?

Anne: Yes.  Marymount Singers has a trip to San Francisco and L.A.  We do summer trips.  Spring break trips are generally for Singers.  In June, there are usually two trips: one goes out of the country, and one is a service trip inside the country.  This year the trip is to Turkey.

Do you have school masses?

Both: Yes.

Anne: I’m actually a Eucharistic minister so I participate in most masses in one way or another.  We probably have Mass about once every two months.  We have Mass of the Holy Spirit, Founder’s Day Mass, Ash Wednesday, All Saint’s Day, Lessons and Carols, which is our big Christmas celebration.

Ana: Lessons and Carols is not a Mass but it’s in a church.

Do you have Big Sisters/Little Sisters?

Ana: Yes, ours are Kindergartners and we’ve had them since ninth grade.  When you go to Mass, you take your little sister with you.  There will be special events throughout the year where it will be Big Sister/Little Sister bonding, and there will be a time designated for an outing.  One year, we went in the park to look for leaves for a collage.

Anne: Yeah, we usually have two or three events a year, where we do some kind of fun half-day activities with them.

Do you need to get community service hours? If so, how many?

Ana: In the sophomore year, it was required to get 40 hours.  It is encouraged to volunteer.  A lot of girls volunteer without community service hours.

Anne: And the service trip of course is the perfect chance to volunteer.

Are sports a big deal?  What’s the big emphasis at your school?

Anne: I wouldn’t say they’re a big deal.  I participate in them- I’m a three-season varsity athlete, but they’re not emphasized as much as other things are.  We’re not one of those schools where we have our own fields.  We’re getting our own field, though.

There’s a sense of community that’s emphasized- the Big Sister/Little Program that we have.

Ana: We have assemblies every Friday.  Last Friday, it was kind of a stress reliever where we sang karaoke to a popular song.  Community is probably the most emphasized thing here, right now.

Anne: We have a mascot — Rory.  We’re the lions.