The school is located right off of the Dufferin/St. Clair intersection. It is a great location, with a range of lunch options. There are tons of restaurants that my friends enjoy going to, but I prefer staying at school during my lunch period. Many people go off campus at lunch, but also during their study period. The St. Clair streetcar is what most people take to get to school; it is not uncommon to see classmates in the morning or going home after school on the streetcar together.
I had an ideal admissions process. During the open house, I felt immediately welcomed by the school ambassadors (I didn’t know that at the same time next year, I would be an ambassador as well!), and our tour guide was really nice and answered all our questions. Right away, the school reminded me of my middle school and I felt very at home. I talked with a couple staff that day, as well as the upper school principal. The application process was not that hard; I was asked for letters of recommendation, wrote about myself in short essays, as well as spending an optional afternoon in the school with my future classmates. There was supposed to be an interview component, but I talked with the principal so much at the open house I didn’t even need one. Rather than stressful, it was an exciting process leading me to life at a new school.
I think Hudson is definitely a town rather than a city, but there are still people I don't know. The school has a vibrant community, and I have a couple great international friends that I met here. There aren't many students, so it is easy to feel included, especially in your grade. Any student who wants to succeed will find that they are supported at Hudson, but students with poor time management will probably struggle. I found I've become more efficient with planning and using my calendar because of the fast-paced semester. It is easy to fall behind if you aren't careful, so organization is a priority.
There are many extracurriculars offered. One of the biggest clubs is the Duke of Edinburgh award, which all the grade 9 students are automatically signed up for, but any student can participate in. I’m really glad I decided to join, because it is helping my volunteer hours as well as being something I am excited to add to my resume. I am part of the dance club this year, and even though there aren’t many people, I’ve really had fun performing for the school with my dance club friends. Dance club didn’t really take off until this year, and I’m glad to be part of it. If you don’t see a club you want to join, you can always start one. Athletics are also a big part of Hudson, and joining a team is a positive way to step out of your comfort zone and meet more people.
I feel at home, because everything seems familiar to me. Hudson definitely reminds me of my elementary and middle school which was a small private school. Every morning walking to my locker I feel comfortable. I cannot speak for anyone else, but I do believe everyone can find something about Hudson that they can appreciate, and feel appreciated in the school community. One of the best school community experiences I had at Hudson was our holiday potluck, with everyone enjoying a wide range of foods and spending time with our friends.
I am challenged in my everyday classes. The three semester system is also really unique, and allows you to focus on less classes at a time, which I find is much less stressful than balancing eight courses all year. For the second semester of my Grade 10 year, I was able to take a grade 11 math course, which I felt I was ready to take since I had already done grade 10 during the first semester.. I enjoy it even though it is the most challenging work I’ve done in school! I love taking my math and science courses and I feel that anything I learn in those classes will be useful later in life, because I do want to work in STEM.
I believe the teachers genuinely care about the students and their success at Hudson. They are always open to helping you whenever they can, and spend a lot of time assisting students even during their breaks. I know a couple teachers who are always staying after school, in activities like Math Café, where students can get math help after school or study for math competitions. My teachers are nice, and some are really funny. They are also very organized, and everything from PowerPoints to daily class notes are available on their Google classroom or personalized website.
I have great respect for the people helping me in my education, because everyone wants the best for you at Hudson. I think that all the teachers and the guidance counsellor are great at motivating the students, and inspiring them to do their best. When I was applying to SHAD a couple of months ago, my math teacher and guidance counsellor were happy to assist me with the application, and all the staff at Hudson were overjoyed to hear that I was accepted. I feel that my success is very supported here.
It took some time to settle into Hudson, but it was the best feeling when I realized I was talking with more people, and everything seemed a bit more casual. The people here are really nice, and even though I came in grade 10, there were a lot of new students just like me. As the student body grows, I think the school would benefit from a more formal student government. Currently, any interested students have the option of joining the Student Council, which is responsible for planning most of the school events and activities. I would love to see these opportunities expanded, with the election of a student body president, treasurer, and so on. On a personal level, the commute to Hudson has proven to be a challenge, as I spend an hour on transit each way. That said, I do feel like the travel time is worth it because of the quality of students, teachers, and staff available to me at Hudson.
If I was asked to give a tour, I would take the visitors into the science classrooms or my math classroom. I love all my classes, but science and math are special to me, and what my career goals are. I feel these rooms are decorated with the best things: posters and diagrams showcasing the student’s work, graphing art in the math classrooms, science equipment and models… It is where I study my favourite subjects!