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Julie Lucas ’97
Chief Advancement Officer

Julie (’97) joined Darlington's Advancement Office in 2007 and was named chief advancement officer in 2016. As such, she oversees development, alumni relations and admissions. Previously, she has served as director of development, director of giving programs and campaign director for Darlington's Second Century Campaign. Julie holds a B.A. in Communication from Loyola University New Orleans. She and her husband, Sam (’97 LD '13), have two children, Wilson ('28) and Hudson.

Boarding and day students from Cooper House, Darlington's first-year girls' house, sing the Alma Mater during RUMPUS Weekend.

Prospective Boarding Parent FAQ #10: 'How Does Having Day Students on Campus Impact the Culture?'

8/10/2017 11:30:00 AM, 114 views

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The last question I will tackle in my 10-part Prospective Boarding School Parent FAQ blog series touches on one of the things that makes Darlington School unique in the boarding school world: 

"How does having day students on campus impact the boarding experience/the school culture?"

Darlington is fortunate to have both day and boarding students as it creates a really special experience for everyone.

I have the most wonderful group of high school friends that includes both day students (one of whom is my husband!) and fellow boarding students. The parents of my day student friends had me over for dinner and were there for me when I needed them. In return, my day and boarding student friends went home with me a lot of the time!

The mix of students makes for a more diverse learning environment. In any given class, you could have local day students from Calhoun, Rome, or Cartersville as well as boarding students from Alabama, North Carolina, Tennessee, Florida, China, Germany, and the Bahamas!

It’s just another element of diversity within our community that provides a richer experience for all of us! 

Below, six mothers of current or recently graduated boarding students share the parent perspective: 

"Day students and boarding students have many opportunities to interact during and after the school day. The day students help to acclimate the boarders to the City of Rome in a way that only a local resident could accomplish. They also bring with them the rich traditions of Darlington from their previous years on campus. The day students offer boarders a chance to have friendships apart from those with the students that they live with on a full time basis in the dorms. This allows boarders to participate in a broader variety of conversations and experiences." - Pam Doig of Gainesville, Ga., mother of Ben ('19) 

"The girls in the dorm really form a special bond, but that doesn't prevent them from being friends with day students. Having families in Rome where they can go on the weekends really makes the boarding students feel welcome and at home. Our daughter often goes to day students' homes on the weekends, and has even stayed with them in the summer while starting softball practice. The day students and their parents are very welcoming." - Merritt Fields of Cordele, Ga., mother of Aisling ('18)

"Darlington does a good job integrating the day students and boarding students life. They can spend nights in the dorms since they are all assigned to dorms anyway. This also gives boarding students an opportunity to interact with the locals and their culture. Day students also take on leadership positions at the school." - Sheila Ebri of Brunswick, Ga., mother of Bernadette ('17)

"Along with getting to know students from other states and/or countries, Darlington boarding students are also able to interact, become friends with, and get to know the day students and their families. It is another way for a boarding student  to plug into the community. Your boarding student may be invited to share a meal or an evening/weekend off campus with a day student family, which only adds to the community feel of the school. These parents are often another great resource for boarding school parents." - Elizabeth Bou of Marietta, Ga., mother of Madelyn ('18)

"Day students are an integral part of the school; they fit right alongside the boarding students and apart from the fact that they go home at the end of the day, there is no difference between a boarding and day student. My children have been enriched by having several day student friends over the years that have helped them out and taken them in at different times when coming back home was simply unrealistic." - Paula Bacardi of Nassau, Bahamas, mother of Alex ('18) and Ted ('19)

"Our children have made lifelong friends with day students. Darlington allows day students to have leadership positions in the dorm and they also have day student sleepovers." - Danielle Wheeler of Fayetteville, N.C., mother of Griffin ('17) and Smith ('19)

For more information about Darlington School's boarding program, feel free to contact me anytime or you can also request a campus visit by clicking here.



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