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Freshmen Thoughts on the Camping Trip

ABOVE: Credit: @packercollegiate on Instagram

With the 2017-2018 school year come and gone, new freshmen are entering Packer’s Upper School. At the beginning of every school year, the freshmen go to Indian Head camp in Equinunk, Pennsylvania to encourage the returning freshmen to make friends with new students and to further already existing friendships. Three freshmen students’ thoughts on this trip were collected, so as to get their feedback and to help improve the trip.

James Perlmutter (‘22) believes that the “trip was pretty fun for the last part.” He says that it was nice to meet some new kids, but “[he] didn’t really like that [they] only got to meet few new kids because [they] were put in certain groups and couldn’t really…interact with anyone else besides the seven kids and old kids [they] were with.”

James also believes that the groups “[should be] more diverse [and] instead of having one set group [they] could keep changing up that the whole trip.”

It is clear that James wanted to spend time with the newer students and help them assimilate into Packer.

Rafe Abdulali (‘22) thinks that the trip was a fun bonding experience, but he adds that “[they] only hung out with a third of [their] grade” which Rafe calls “annoying.” To fix this, Rafe suggests that “ [rather] than hanging out with just [their] buses [they] mix it up a little throughout the days.”

Again, another Packer student wishes to be grouped with the new students.

Eli Weinberger (‘22) “thought all the activities were pretty fun.” He said that mountain biking was his favorite and that it was “pretty awesome.”

“So I wish I could’ve done it again,” he says.

His critique of the trip was that he thought the trip should have more time allocated to the use of the pool. He “thought it [was going to] be something that [they] could use more and the one time [they] were in it it was a lot of fun.”

Overall, it is clear that the freshmen enjoyed this trip with mixed feelings. However, two out of the three freshmen interviewed, James Perlmutter (‘22) and Rafe Abdulali (‘22), expressed their concerns about the grouping. They wanted the groups to consist more of a mix of freshmen who are new to Packer and freshmen who are simply new to Packer Upper School. Due to the fact that the students interviewed wished for the groups to be diverse (in the sense of an even  balance between new and returning students) than not, this is an easy fix that faculty should make to make the trip better for the freshmen next year. The freshmen last year experienced this problem as well, as many of them complained about being placed in groups with students that they knew already, which led to some people taking months to form the friend groups that they have now…

Antonio “Tony” Mota is currently a junior in the Packer Collegiate Institute and the head of the technical side of the Packer Prism wesbite. He has written for the Prism before and is excited to continue contributing and to start managing the website. In his free time, you can find him hanging out with his friends, playing video games, browsing Reddit memes, or watching Netflix. A fun fact about Tony is that he aims to be trilingual, as he already knows English, Latin, and is beginning to learn Chinese. Tony can be reached at

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