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Alfred (Rik) F. Dugan III

One of my great joys as Princeton Academy’s head of school is having the opportunity to share with secondary school admission directors just how awesome, unique, and special each and every one of our eighth graders is. As part of Princeton Academy’s secondary school placement process, Mr. Kenyon and I meet with each secondary school to personalize the process in the most human way possible - we help to share their stories. Our students are seen, known and cherished, and their diverse interests, accomplishments, and identities are appreciated by all who come to know them. I stand in awe and amazement of our young men - who they are, what they do, and how they lead in our world. It is my honor to advocate on their behalf.

The secondary school placement process illuminates the value of a Princeton Academy experience. Our young men are extraordinary, and by the time they have gotten to eighth grade at Princeton Academy, they have accomplished so much in their young lives. Our students are humble, and through this intentional process of self-reflection, they are able to discern who they are by realizing that their identity is defined by a compilation of life’s moments, their values, and their character. Each student is remarkable and unique in his own way. Their academic achievements, artistic endeavors, athletic accomplishments, and service commitments are remarkable. Literally, when I listen to all that our boys do, I am in awe. What’s more, though, is evidence of their strength of character, their moral compass, their spiritual core, and their sense of purpose. As children of the Sacred Heart, our students stand out through their embodiment of the Goals & Criteria. Our young men are leaders, and when they matriculate to their next school they are actively seeking ways to engage as they have at PASH. Secondary schools know that they will contribute their gifts and talents to their communities, making their schools stronger and better in every way, just as ours is because of them. It warms my heart when others see the greatness in them that we get to enjoy each and every day here at PASH. 

All we want is for our young men to continue to thrive, grow, be happy, and live full lives. In our work with admission directors, we consistently receive updates on just how amazing our alumni are. Often, our alumni take time out of their busy days to meet with Mr. Kenyon and me when we are visiting their campus, communicating their incredible updates, and checking in on their alma mater. Our alumni are needed and known, shining their lights brightly as they develop into adulthood. They are loving and faithful young men who possess a deep respect for intellectual values. They are socially aware and act on their beliefs to better the lives of others through the building of community. Many continue to dive deeper into those passions that they developed at PASH, and many devote themselves to exploring new pursuits in their robust secondary schools, fortified by the courage to grow in an atmosphere of wise freedom that they developed at Princeton Academy. Our boys find their voices at Princeton Academy and amplify them in the next chapters of their lives. Our alumni are leaders for good, and they represent Princeton Academy with grace and dignity. 

While our young men do earn admission to the finest schools in the world, this is not what defines success at Princeton Academy. What is most impressive is who our students are and all that they do to positively contribute to their secondary schools and to our world. I am so very proud of our Princeton Academy gentlemen, and it is an honor to be on this journey through life with them. 

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