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Brewster Academy

Brewster Academy (also known as BA) is a co-educational independent boarding school located on 80 acres (32 ha) in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire, United States. It occupies 0.5 miles (800 m) of shoreline along Lake Winnipesaukee. With around 380 students, it serves grades nine through twelve and post-graduates. The 2016 full boarding tuition is $57,300.[2] The current Head of School, since 2015, is Dr. Craig Gemmell.[3]

Brewster Academy
Brewster seal-color.jpg
Wolfeboro, N.H.
United States
Type Independent boarding school
Motto Meus Dux Sit Veritas
(Latin: Let truth be our leader)
Established 1820
Chair of Trustees R C Ballentine Esq
Head of School C N Gemmell
Faculty 57[1]
Gender Co-educational
Enrollment 352[2]
Average class size 12[2]
Student to teacher ratio 6:1[2]
Campus Lakeside
80 acres (32 ha)
Color(s)      Cardinal red
     navy blue
Athletics 14 sports
Nickname Bobcats

Coordinates: 43°34′58″N 71°12′27″W / 43.58278°N 71.20750°W / 43.58278; -71.20750



Brewster Academy's Academic Building, where most classes are held

The school was founded in 1820 by local citizens as a "building for higher education".[2] Originally called the "Wolfeboro & Tuftonboro Academy", in 1887 it was renamed "Brewster Free Academy" in honor of benefactor John Brewster.[4] For sixty years it charged no tuition fee to local residents, and, from its inception until 1964, the school served as the only high school in Wolfeboro,[4] as well as serving day students from neighboring towns. In 1946, the academy begin to charge a small tuition, and Wolfeboro at its town meeting in March 1947 voted to pay local students' tuition fees.[5] During the immediate postwar years, it was a popular school with military veterans seeking to improve their credentials for a university education under the G.I. Bill. In 1963 the graduating class consisted of 60 local students, with 30 additional post-graduate students who boarded on campus.[citation needed] Many were there to increase their athletic prowess, and some, including Milt Morin who played in the NFL, had successful college and pro sports careers. The local students were then moved to Kingswood Regional High School in town and Brewster became a private boarding school.

In 1985, Digital Equipment Corporation co-founder Ken Olsen donated a number of Digital personal computers to Brewster. The computers were part of a new lab dedicated to Grace Murray Hopper, whose family had a summer house in Wolfeboro. The lab is called the Grace Murray Hopper Center for Computer Learning.[citation needed]

Brewster has hosted the Great Waters Music Festival since 1995. This summer festival promotes live musical performances including choral, symphonic, folk, pops, jazz, Broadway, dance, and renowned vocal and instrumental artists. Celebrity performers have included Wynton Marsalis, Dave Brubeck, Arlo Guthrie, Chuck Mangione, and the Glenn Miller Orchestra.[6]

In 2014, Brewster's Varsity A Basketball Team won their third National Prep Basketball Championships. Five alumni have played in the NBA, with others projected to be selected in the 2014 NBA Draft in June.[needs update]


Brewster Academy began its one-to-one laptop program in 1993. Each new freshman or sophomore admission to Brewster receives an Apple laptop on arrival and this laptop will be with them for the remainder of their time at the academy. Juniors and seniors are expected to provide their own laptop unless special financial or other aid is given. Most classes require software tools for students' work and to ensure constant communication among students, parents and administrators. Through online portfolios, students post their work to be reviewed and evaluated by faculty, and shared with parents. Through their own portal, grades and academic status are constantly posted to all students.


Most members of the faculty live around campus with their families. Some are dorm parents, who take care of students in dorm. Dorm parents have dorm meetings once a week to discuss problems in student's life in dorm. Most of the married dorm parents live with their families in quarters connected to the dorm.

The faculty is prepared and trained at the Brewster Summer Institute, a four-week professional development program designed to assist teachers in accelerating student growth. Each instructor is placed on an eight-member team that teaches and advises students in a single grade. Teams meet three or four times weekly to discuss each student’s progress and performance. Class size averages 12, and the student-teacher ratio is 6:1.


Brewster Academy provides various afternoon sport programs, such as soccer, basketball, lacrosse, field hockey, ice hockey, or tennis, with members of faculty coaching them. Brewster has a diverse selection of interscholastic sports along with recreational, intramural and instructional sports during the fall, winter and spring seasons. Among the interscholastic sports, Brewster fields varsity, junior varsity and co-ed teams, as well as eight- and four-person shells on the crew teams. Games are typically played on Wednesdays and Saturdays, with a half day of classes on Wednesdays to accommodate games schedules.[2] During games and during regular practices, an athletic trainer is available to help students. The teams are coached by members of faculty at all levels.

Brewster competes in the following interscholastic sports: alpine skiing, baseball, basketball, cross country running, cross country skiing, field hockey, ice hockey, lacrosse, crew, softball, sailing, snowboarding, soccer and tennis. Intramural, recreational and instructional offerings include advanced strength training, dance, equestrianism, golf, outdoor skills, snow sports, tennis, ultimate Frisbee, x-fitness and yoga.[2]

The academy holds numerous New England and Lakes Region League Championship titles.[citation needed]

The boys' prep basketball team has won the National Prep School Championship and the NEPSAC Class AAA Championship several times. The program has sent approximately 100 alumni to NCAA Division I programs over the past 14 years. Ten Brewster alumni have played in the NBA since 2010.

The boys' lacrosse team has won numerous Lakes Region Championships, as well as consistently ranking nationally in LaxPower and US Lacrosse polls. Numerous alumni have moved on to play in college and professionally.

Athletic facilities include a 50,000-square-foot (4,600 m2) athletics and wellness center featuring a convertible turf floor,[7] a four-lane 200-meter indoor track,[8] and a fitness center; six playing fields; nine tennis courts; a boathouse for dry land training for the sailing and crew teams; an indoor rowing tank;[9] and a climbing wall.


In the performing arts, Brewster has an award-winning chorus, HOWL, which has performed at Carnegie Hall and a drama group that produces musicals, operas and plays throughout the year. There is a chamber orchestra, a chorale, a wind ensemble and a jazz band, and dance instruction is available. An art center is home to ceramics, printmaking, drawing and painting classes.[2] Multimedia and desktop publishing centers feature the latest computers, industry standard software, and video and digital equipment. The newly renovated Anderson Hall, designed by Scott Simons Architects, features a proscenium theater with first-rate lighting and acoustics.[according to whom?]

Notable alumniEdit

Residence hallsEdit

Students live in 20 dormitories with faculty members and their families. Most dormitories overlook Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire's largest lake, and the Belknap Mountains in the distance.



  1. ^ ""Fast Facts"". Brewster Academy. Brewster Academy. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Brewster Academy". The Association of Boarding Schools. TABS. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  3. ^ "Head of School". Brewster Academy. Brewster Academy. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  4. ^ a b "Historical Sketch, Brewster Free Academy". Genealogy Today. Genealogy Today LLC. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  5. ^ Editor's personal experience.
  6. ^ "Great Waters Music Festival". Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  7. ^ "Photo by Brewster Academy" (JPG). Retrieved 2015-06-04. 
  8. ^ "Photo by Brewster Academy" (JPG). Retrieved 2015-06-04. 
  9. ^ "Indoor Rowing Tank". Retrieved December 9, 2013. 
  10. ^ Barnes, Rick (2007-05-21). "Men's Basketball signs Dogus Balbay to National Letter of Intent". Texas Texas Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  11. ^ Lawlor, Christopher (2010-02-18). "Barton ready for the Garden". Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  12. ^ Kelley, Jimmy (2014-01-19). "Hoophall Classic Recruiting Update: 2015 Guard Donovan Mitchell gaining interest from Indiana, Xavier". Archived from the original on 2015-07-13. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  13. ^ "Craig Brackins". 2016. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  14. ^ "Melvin Ejim". 2016. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  15. ^ "Men's Basketball: C.J. Fair". SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY. 2016. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  16. ^ "NH People: Topher Grace". 2013-02-22. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  17. ^ Estes, Ben (2011-11-03). "Touted hoops recruit Mitch McGary commits to Michigan". The Michigan Daily. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  18. ^ "Thomas Robinson". 2008. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  19. ^ Darcy, Kieran (2012-03-15). "Jakarr Sampson chooses St. John's". Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  20. ^ "Blake Schilb". 2016. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  21. ^ "Xavier Silas". NIU Huskies. Archived from the original on 2014-10-06. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  22. ^ Hickman, Jason (2011-11-02). "T.J. Warren commits to NC State". Max Preps. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 

External linksEdit