Roycemore School

Weekly Newsletter · May 15th 2018

This Week's Calendar


Tuesday May 15, 22 · Join us in the gardens on Tuesdays in May. Stop by anytime 3:30 - 5:30 pm. Learn about how you can contribute. A Roycemore that gardens together, grows together.

Wednesday, May 16
5:00 pm · Yoga · Free restorative yoga class in the library

May 7 - 18 · Advanced Placement Exams (Upper School students)

Saturday, May 19
YEA Festival · Each year Roycemore participated in the Young Evanston Artists festival. Every art student, schoolwide, will have artwork displayed from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm in Raymond Park, at the intersection of Lake and Chicago Ave. Come see this year’s amazing Roycemore artwork!

Tuesday, May 22
8:30 am · Admissions Morning at Roycemore

Friday, May 25 · Sports and Activities Assemblies
9:28 am for Middle School
11:00 am for Upper School

Sunday, June 17
RACE AGAINST HATE- Roycemore will again be participating in the YWCA's Race Against Hate. There are four different race options to choose from: a timed 5K and 10k, a 5K walk, and a Youth/Family 1 Mile. To join the Roycemore Team, click here: Race Against Hate Team Roycemore. For more information, click here Race Against Hate or contact team captains: Annette O'Donnell or Darcy Aksamitowski

From the Head of School

Another Trailblazers- new Frontiers with Terry Gdoutos

by Adrianne Finley Odell, Head of School

Continuing with our theme of Griffin trailblazers this month, we introduce you to Dr. Terry Gdoutos, Roycemore Class of 2005. Terry is a Research Scientist in Aerospace at the California Institute of Technology, in Pasadena, CA, where he designs, analyzes, and develops structural systems for lightweight spacecraft, designed to beam solar energy to Earth, providing limitless power to the planet. After graduating from Roycemore, he studied Mechanical Engineering and Computer Science at Northwestern University, earning two BS degrees, and subsequently obtained his PhD in Aeronautics from caltech.

After Roycemore launched the P3 (Personal Passion Project) program in our middle school this year, we sent out a call for people to volunteer as mentors. Terry was one of the first to respond. And of course the Head of School was pretty excited about the opportunity for our middle school students to learn from an alumnus about the path that took him from Roycemore student to designing satellites that can wirelessly transmit solar energy back to earth to power remote locations.

“When I remember my years at Roycemore, it is clear to me that Roycemore’s culture of excellence and individuality has positively shaped my life since graduation,” says Terry. “Roycemore emphasized learning through discovery, critical thinking, and challenging oneself; values that have remained with me to this day. Outside the classroom, the opportunities to build friendships through the extracurricular activities offered also shaped my character and proved to be invaluable, particularly through soccer, baseball (which I had never played before), and scholastic bowl.“

When asked what led him to his current career path, Terry thought a moment and realized there was a connection going all the way back to high school with his January Short Term (JST). “Through my JST projects, I learned and was inspired by the logic behind how computers operate, and went on to study Computer Science in college. I still remember how I learned to critically analyze film on another JST project. Roycemore provided me with a truly unique experience.”

Last fall the entire middle school had an opportunity to Skype with Terry to learn about his work at caltech. The students asked great questions, including one from a student who asked, “so, how much time do you spend on your work?” Terry asked, “do you mean each day?” The young lady had been listening to him talk about all of the interesting things he is doing each day but was expressing her concern to him (in a subtle way) about work-life balance!

Once the middle school students decided on their P3 project focus, we learned that two seventh grade students wanted to research how to create a new kind of airplane wing that was inspired by the aerodynamics of shark skin. We realized that partnering them with Terry as a mentor would be a great match! “I was recently very excited to learn that Roycemore extended JST to Middle School through the P3 program,” says Terry. “I was even more impressed when I experienced first-hand, as a mentor to a P3 student group, the inspiration of students to discover and research new fields; not only did students understand the basics of wing design, but also developed the intuition to propose novel solutions for performance improvement! I am excited and proud to experience firsthand how Roycemore is building on the programs that shaped my life as a student.”

We are proud to count Terry among our trailblazing Roycemore alumni! And even more thrilled that he is giving back to our current students in such a tangible way!

Important Reminders

Tell a friend! Upcoming Admissions Morning

We are hosting an admissions event for prospective parents on Tuesday, May 22 at 8:30 am. This event is intimate and informal, and guests will have the opportunity to speak with administrators, teachers and current parents, and to see the classes in action.

If you know of any families that might be interested in learning more about our school, please encourage them to attend! They can register here.

If that date doesn’t work, they can reach out to Amanda Avery, Director of Admissions at to schedule an alternate date to visit.

Summer at Roycemore - NEW options added!

Summer Programs at Roycemore are offered for students as young as three and as old as 18. Dates run from June 11th - August 10th. As you are planning your student’s summer activities, be sure to check out the options at Roycemore. Several new opportunities have recently been added.

Community Happenings

Student Exchange Opportunity · Guatemala Faces & Culture Program

We are happy to share with you that this year we will welcome Guatemalan students to campus through the Faces and Our Cultures Program. These young participants spend nearly two months living with a host family while attending classes and participating in extracurricular activities at school. The program has led to wonderful friendships and provides our students and our Guatemalan guests with valuable cultural experiences.
In order to participate in the Faces Program, Guatemalan students apply to be Cultural Ambassadors of their country and are carefully selected by the Faces & Our Cultures Team. They go through a preparation process during the year and also prepare cultural projects to share with their host family and school.
This fall, our young cultural ambassadors will arrive October 16th, stay with their host families and join our school community for the following 7.5 weeks, and depart December 9th.

If you are interested in hosting a student, and participate in this life enriching experience, you can contact Adrianne Finley Odell at or contact Gaby Padilla, State Coordinator, at
US host students also have the opportunity to participate in a Cultural Exchange Experience in Guatemala during the summer (optional program). This experience can be customized from 2 up to 4 weeks.

Evanston Children's Choir

The Evanston Children's Choir invites all to its free multicultural Spring Concert on May 20th, 2018! They warmly welcome the students and families from Roycemore School to attend. Families are encouraged to contact them about joining the ECC. Early registration is now open for Fall 2018, with programs for all ages— adults too! As always, nobody is ever turned away for lack of ability to pay.

You are Invited to Participate in a Roycemore Fourth of July!

Roycemore School is planning to have a float in the Evanston Fourth of July parade this year. If you are interested in participating in the making of the float, we will be building it at school the week of June 25th. We are in search of a flat bed truck/ trailer for the float, volunteers to build, and volunteers to participate in the parade. The parade starts at 2:00 pm on July 4th and is over around 4:00 pm, when we will relocate to Roycemore for a community picnic / barbeque. Following the picnic / barbeque, a group will walk down to the waterfront to enjoy the Palatine Band followed by fireworks. Please email Adrianne Finley Odell to let her know if you have a truck or flatbed, went to participate in float building, participate in the parade, and / or participate in the picnic / barbeque at Roycemore following the parade.


Last week, Upper School teacher, Dori Franck, attended a cubs game and happened to see none other than United States Senator, Dick Durbin. Dr. Franck took the opportunity to thank him for his service and to encourage his continued support of teachers and education.

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1200 Davis Street - Evanston, Illinois 60201
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