Students eager for more IC Day opportunities

Photographing Philadelphia group at the Second Bank of the United States in Old City – Mr. Thomas Stambaugh

On Wednesday, February 19, Haverford held the annual Intellectual Curiosity Day, where students engage in day-long experiential, interdisciplinary, and thought-provoking activities. Given a respite from daily lessons in traditional classrooms, students interacted with new environments, studied with faculty members they otherwise might not have known, and reached outside their own interests to explore new ideas. Activities ranged from deciphering Black Mirror to traveling to Chinatown. 

This year, IC Day would have not been possible without the major support of Upper School Math teacher Mr. Nathan Bridge. Running around campus during the busy day, Mr. Bridge was at the forefront of the program’s success.

“It was fun. I got to float around, help with logistics, attendance, and pictures. I was able to witness activities in action and it was really inspiring to see so many students engaged,” Mr. Bridge said. 

In terms of activity selection, former students designed an algorithm that gave eighty percent of students one of their top two choices in IC Day activities. Many students were pleased they had the opportunity to participate in their favorite activities. 

While most students were satisfied with their given choices, a lot of work is necessary prior to student selection to make it happen. Funding is often a vague factor: Does “A Day in the Life of an Artist” get less funding than “Escape the Room?”

“Due to the nature of the activities, there are some that required more of the IC budget allocated to them. However, any activity can apply for more funding,” Mr. Bridge said.

Regardless of small dilemmas, the day was largely regarded as a success. Mr. Bridge sent out a school-wide follow-up survey, and the statistics speak for themselves. Out of 256 responses, 93.7% of students want more than one day of IC Day, demonstrating that many students enjoyed the experience.

However, is it realistic to have more than one day of IC Day?

“The energy levels around the campus, students and teachers, speak for themselves,” Mr. Bridge said. “Although it would take considerably more logistics, funding, and a lot more thought.”

“Our top priority is whatever we’re doing with IC Day forth, is that we’re doing it right.”

Mr. Nathan Bridge

IC Day this year evidently showed the overwhelming support for the excursions and the further intellectual curiosity our community desires.

Mr. Bridge said, “Our top priority is whatever we’re doing with IC Day forth, is that we’re doing it right.”

Author: Quinn Luong '22

Quinn Luong has contributed to The Index since 2019. He currently serves as News Editor, and he has also written features and campus opinions. Quinn won the Pennsylvania School Press Association (PSPA) Philadelphia-area Student Journalism Competition for Newspaper News Story Writing and will compete for the state title in the Spring of 2020. His article "Teachers prepare for Virtue Villagers" earned a Silver Key from the Philadelphia-area Scholastic Writing competition. Outside of The Index, Quinn is a member of the Diversity Alliance, the Pan-Asian Alliance, debate and speech, and Model UN. His favorite classes are English, Spanish, and Chinese.