Just a stone’s throw away — 1.5 miles, to be exact — from downtown Princeton, New Jersey and the prestigious Princeton University is The Hun School of Princeton. Founded in 1914, it is a private institution, spanning 45 acres where students are encouraged to learn with happiness, celebrate each other’s successes, and grow with fortitude.
While rigorous, the journey to scholastic excellence is fruitful since learners are encouraged to not only focus on academics but also gain key insights from the world around them. Campus is an unrivalled source of inspiration as well. Last year’s investments — Breen Performing Arts Centre and DAYLO STEM Centre — are testament to this. These spaces were introduced in response to students’ interests and topical needs within various industries. Hence, Hun’s ability to help learners pinpoint their passions well before advancing to higher education.
“It’s a well-rounded environment with a heart-full community that gives you all the opportunities to develop yourself not only as an athlete or as an artist or as a student but also as a human being,” confirms student Vincent G from Quebec, Canada.
When it comes to high-powered academics, students here are welcome to explore a challenging and diverse curriculum. Hun offers every learner the option of four different tracks leading to Honours distinction as a STEM, Global, Arts, or Civic Responsibility and Ethical Leadership Scholar.
This year, a new Cybersecurity subject was introduced to teach high school students what it means to investigate strategies for identifying and protecting against cybersecurity threats like hackers, eavesdropping and network attacks. Participants receive access to hands-on labs in a remote cyber range which provides real-world practice in the configuration and mitigation of system vulnerabilities.
Stepping into the great unknown and learning from it
Hun believes that nurturing great students means teaching them to carefully balance learning and life. This idea has led the School to conceptualise unique, real-world courses such as NextTerm — a mini-semester programme that runs for three weeks each May.
The opportunity sees Hun’s Upper School students (freshmen, sophomores, and juniors) participating in fascinating, eye-opening immersion learning experiences in different parts of the US and beyond, such as in Central and South America, as well as Europe. Each excursion is team-taught, informed by a variety of environments and overseen by real-world practitioners who leverage resources from both on and off campus.
For example, just last year, one class’s focus on sustainability transported them to the UK. There, they learned just how London became a “Green City”. When they returned to Hun, it was time to apply knowledge through a culminating project. Inspired and determined to make real change, they began approaching businesses in town and encouraged them to sign up to refill reusable water bottles at no cost. In return, each agreeing business received free promotion via a student-created app. This was just one of many ways students at Hun are nurtured to uplift communities as movers and shakers.
Where enduring connections are made
Most schools drive student success with rigorous approaches to teaching. However, at Hun, educators are not only positively enlightening when it comes to conveying information to groups, but they are also equally excellent at mentoring students in one-to-one settings. The process is simple — discussions are conducted, voices are heard and horizons are broadened.
Students are constantly encouraged and empowered to learn not only from educators in the classroom but also from each other through peer groups. From this exposure, they are able to understand diverse cultures and varying perspectives. Those who choose to board at the Hun enjoy this immersion 24/7.
Hun offers boarding options for international and out-of-state students. The residence is wonderfully designed, giving students a supportive and immersive introduction to the wider world. Its small community of residents allows young pupils to learn from each other, support each other, and grow together.
“Being a boarder here at Hun definitely provides me with the structure I need to stay on top of all my courses,” says Sophie R., a Hun boarding student from Iran. “When you are surrounded by people who all strive for that structure, it really helps you get everything done and stay on top of it all.”