« 2017


  • December

    Zach Schmid '14 punts for Parker against Coronado in 2013

    Former Parker punter reflects on Ivy League career, prepares for future in tech investing

    Alumnus Zachary Schmid ‘14 is coming off a successful football season punting for Harvard University, marking the end of his three-year career playing for the Ivy League team.

    Zach’s success was featured in the San Diego Union-Tribune’s Alumni Report last month, along with his younger brother Drew (a La Jolla Country Day graduate), who plays for Columbia University. The two brothers were vying for a share of the Ivy League title, but their teams fell short in the final games.

    Zach was a star punter at Parker and in his three seasons at Harvard, he punted 159 times, according to the Union-Tribune. He told the newspaper that when he came to Harvard, he wanted to show off his work and that he had mastered his craft. “Punting is a craft,” he said, “Punters have to be comfortable under pressure.”

    Staying cool under pressure will certainly help him as he takes on new responsibilities following his college graduation. Zach will graduate this May with a degree in economics and has reportedly accepted a job at a private equity firm in Palo Alto, investing in tech companies.

    His time spent as student-athlete at Parker and Harvard have helped him prepare for his soon-to-be career.

    “Employers value people from team-based environments,” Zach told the Union-Tribune. “Athletes work well with others, have a desire to succeed, and can work under adverse circumstances.”

    As he gets ready to take on life’s next chapter, he reflected on his time spent playing football.

    “My football career, my competitive athletic career are over, and it’s emotional,” said Zach. “My time here has gone so fast, but in a way I feel like I’ve been here 10 years.”
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  • November

    Parker Alumna named Outstanding Youth/Student Volunteer in 2017

    Charlotte Schmidt, a member of Parker’s 2017 graduating class, was recognized for outstanding community service at the 45th Annual National Philanthropy Day hosted by the San Diego Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals. The event took place on Tuesday, Nov. 13 at the Del Mar Fairgrounds.
    Charlotte was among 10 honorees recognized for the positive impact they have made on the San Diego community, including eight individuals and two not-for-profit organizations. She was named Outstanding Youth/Student Volunteer for her work with ElderHelp of San Diego, a nonprofit offering services to support older adults living independently.
    Charlotte became involved with ElderHelp while working toward her Girl Scout Gold Award. She used speaking events, social media campaigns, and relationship-building tools to further ElderHelp’s reach and tap into new audiences. She used social media to disseminate the nonprofit’s message and mission and increased ElderHelp’s Instagram followers by 150 percent.
    Though her work with ElderHelp earned her this prestigious award, Charlotte has been volunteering since she was very young. She led numerous volunteer projects as a Girl Scout and served as President of Parker’s Interact Club, encouraging students to get more involved in their communities.
    “Volunteering and service have been central in my life from a young age, so it was natural for me to one day lead my own project,” said Charlotte. “While I certainly had to work very hard, the wonderful people I met at ElderHelp and around San Diego made it truly a pleasure.”
    Now a freshman at The University of Notre Dame, Charlotte said her experience with ElderHelp has made her reconsider how her volunteer work might fit into a future career.
    “I had always considered my academic work to be a separate entity from my volunteer work. I was, and continue to be, so inspired by those at ElderHelp that have put these two together. This has influenced both my studies and extracurriculars in college,” she said. “Working with the wonderful employees of ElderHelp opened my eyes to the vast possibilities open to me.”
    On being recognized as one of the top volunteers in the San Diego area, Charlotte remarked: “I’m incredibly humbled to be honored this way.”
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  • October

    Parker Alumna gives reading alongside US Poet Laureate in Beijing

    Earlier this month, Parker alumna and poet Kassy Lee ‘08 shared the stage with current U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith at a reading in Beijing. The event, held at the Bookworm bookstore, featured Smith and acclaimed poets from across the globe. Lee was among several local poets active in the Beijing literary community who read from their own collections.

    Lee graduated from Columbia University in 2013 before heading to Beijing where she currently lives and works. She has published small collections of poetry titled “The Period of Warring States” and “zombia” and is currently working to assemble another collection.

    She is the co-founder of the arts collective Transmigrant Flow and the Asia coordinator for the Visible Poetry Project, which brings poets and filmmakers together to create visual representations of original and classic poems.

    Read more about Lee and other Parker poets, including some talented grade 6 students, on the Parker Poetry Week blog. Poetry Week kicks off Feb. 5 and will feature renowned poet and former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins, who will visit the Linda Vista Campus to perform a reading of some of his most acclaimed works.
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  • Parker Alumna Named NFCA All-American Scholar-Athlete

    Parker Alumna Sarah Ogle ’15 was named a National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-American Scholar-Athletes for the 2016-17 academic year. Ogle who is now a junior at Carleton College in Northfield, MN, qualified for the award by achieving a grade-point-average of 3.6 on a 4.0 scale.

    During her time at Parker, Ogle was a four-year starter on the Lancer’s varsity softball team. She also played on the varsity volleyball team. Coaches remember Ogle as an outstanding student who was well respected by her teammates.

    “Sarah was a leader by example,” said Coach John Herman. “She was always one of the first to arrive at practice and she always gave 100 percent to the game.”

    Ogle is a pitcher for the Carleton Knights Softball team and averages a 4.91 strikeout per game. Ogle shares this award with four other athletes on her team. 

    Read the entire article here.
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  • September

    Building Community: Parker Football reaches out to past players the old-fashioned way

    Ever since Matt Morrison ‘05 took over as head coach of Parker Football in February 2017, he has made it his mission to create a robust and inclusive program. This meant molding the best and brightest team he could from his current players and setting a solid foundation for players to come. To do this, Morrison chose to look to the past.

    Over the summer, Morrison invited several past players to speak with his junior varsity and varsity teams. It was a chance for Parker alumni to offer words of advice and share how the program positively impacted their lives. It was also an opportunity for current players to learn from those who came before them.

    Building on his ambition to include alumni in the Parker Football program, Morrison asked his players to write letters to the alumni who wore the same jersey number during their time on the field.

    “I wanted the kids to understand that the program is bigger than them and I wanted alumni to know we’re still thinking about them. It’s a good way to generate enthusiasm,” said Morrison, a Parker alumnus himself. “It would have meant a lot to me. Knowing I would have appreciated it made me want to do it.”

    As soon as his players chose their jerseys for the 2017 season, Morrison went through old rosters dating back to 1997 and found the names of alumni who donned the same numbers. He wrote a short bio for each alumnus and asked his JV players to pick one and his varsity players to pick two.

    In their letters, students expressed gratitude for the past players’ contributions to the Parker Football program and invited them to attend a game this season. Many alumni reached out to either the players or Morrison, and their responses were nothing but positive.

    Jim Hazard ‘99 received a letter from varsity captain Gabriel Sawaya, Class of 2018, and quickly sent Morrison an email.

    “He told me he reached out to guys he hadn’t talked to in 10 years after he received that letter,” said Morrison. “Everyone that I’ve heard from has really appreciated it.”

    The students have also learned important lessons from the exercise and walked away with a deeper sense of pride for their program.

    “My biggest takeaway from writing the letters was learning the legacy that these former players have left for us and learning how they contributed to the program when they were playing,” said Gabriel Sawaya. “Learning the history of the Football team really showed me how important this team is and how important it was to the alumni, as well.”

    Fellow varsity teammate and captain Jack Sachrison, Class of 2018, echoed Gabriel’s sentiments.

    “Reaching out to former players is important because, as the saying goes, in order to know where you are going, you must know where you have been. Getting to know former players can inspire those on the team to play up to or even past the standard set by those who came before,” Jack said.

    Part of the mission behind writing the letters was to engage alumni and connect them with current players, and Morrison hoped students would also understand that there are people rooting for them and their success.

    “I hope they realize there are a lot of people who care about them and are interested in how well they do. I hope they’re getting a sense of community out of it. There are a lot of people out there who care about Parker Football,” Morrison said.

    Morrison’s goals seem to have been realized. Speaking to the impact the letter writing exercise had on him, Jack said, “Parker Football is a community. People care about the team. That includes other students, alumni, and the families of these people.”
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  • June

    Alumni, Parents and Upper School students tap into Parker’s professional pool at Parker Networking 2017

    Parker parents, alumni and Upper School students came together for an evening of socializing last month at the the annual Parker Networking event.
    Parker Networking is an important way for members of the School community to connect with peers, exchange business cards and meet new people in their industries. For current students and recent alumni, it is a great way to learn about internships and job opportunities, as well as meet people who work in potential fields of interest.
    This year’s event was held May 24 at the Catamaran Resort and Spa in Pacific Beach. It featured a brand new format consisting of three breakout sessions on compelling topics, including the economic climate of San Diego, the impact of the Internet on individuals and their businesses, and the ever-evolving policy and legal landscape.
    Each breakout session had a panel of experts on-hand to speak on the topics and answer questions from the audience. Panelists included Parker alumni, parents and special friends who work in both the private and public sectors and are influential in their respective industries. Attendees were able to partake in two of the three breakout sessions before coming together for an hour of open, unstructured networking and socializing to close out the night.
    The event was well-received, with many attendees highlighting the strong quality of the panels as their favorite part of the entire event. For others, catching up with old friends and meeting new people was the high point of their experience.
    Parker Networking was co-hosted by the Alumni Relations Committee of the Board of Trustees, the Parents Association and D.A.D.S. Committee, and sponsored by First Republic Bank.
    Caroline Wohl, Chair of the Alumni Relations Committee, spoke of the event’s importance and the importance of networking in general in a statement following the event:
    “The Alumni Relations Committee is honored to co-host this event because it provides our alumni, especially recent graduates, a chance to learn about potential internships, career paths and employment openings. It’s never too early to start building your professional network, and these events are a valuable opportunity to tap into Parker’s considerably accomplished and diverse professional community.”
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  • May

    Parker’s 35th Annual Gala Raises More Than $1 Million for Student Financial Assistance

    Francis Parker School’s 35th Annual Gala was a record-breaking event, raising more than $1 million for student financial assistance and faculty professional development. This year’s event raised more money than any other Gala in Parker history and featured its first-ever male Chair. The event was held April 29 on the Linda Vista Campus.

    The annual Gala is one of the biggest events of the year at Parker. The money raised helps ensure students have access to financial assistance and provides ongoing professional development for faculty and staff. Nearly 20% of Parker students receive some sort of financial support and the annual Gala is an important factor in making sure assistance is available for current and prospective students.

    This year’s Gala theme — Parkerpalooza — transformed the Linda Vista Campus into a true music festival, equipped with food trucks, yard games and the Indie rock band Scars on 45. Dinner was served family style and guests were entertained by a lip sync battle performed by the School’s Gala chair, heads of school and trustees. There was also a virtual silent auction and paddle raise.

    Parker alumnus and Yale graduate Deon Randall was this year’s Gala speaker and inspired guests to give as much support as possible to Parker’s financial assistance program. Randall graduated from Parker in 2010 and was among those students to receive assistance. Randall went on to play football at Yale University, where he became the all-time receiving leader in the school’s history in 2014.

    We would like to thank everyone who helped make this year's Gala event such a success!
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  • Parker Alumnus sailing in 35th America’s Cup as one of Oracle Team USA’s newest members

    Parker alumnus Cooper Dressler ‘09 will compete in the 35th America’s Cup and help defend Oracle Team USA’s claim to the oldest trophy in international sport. The competition takes place in Bermuda over the next few weeks, with five teams racing May 26 to qualify for the main race against defending champions Oracle Team USA beginning June 17.
    Dressler is one of Oracle Team USA’s newest sailing members. The yacht racing team asked Dressler to join in August 2016 after watching him put in work as an onshore crew member in Bermuda.
    A native of San Diego, Dressler spent much of his time in the water -- surfing, sailing and kiteboarding -- before joining the American Youth Sailing Force while attending the University of California, Santa Cruz. Dressler competed in the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup in 2013 with the youth sailing team, where they finished in fifth place out of 10.
    In the Summer of 2014, Dressler got the chance to work for Oracle Team USA in San Francisco and eventually followed the team to Bermuda to take on any job they would give him. His hard work paid off.
    Dressler was “installing air-conditioner units and dragging conduit through the trenches” when he was asked to become the team’s newest sailing member, fellow teammate Andrew Campbell told Sailing World in a Feb. 14 article.
    Dressler was putting in 13-hour days doing odd jobs but reportedly started and finished every day with an intense workout. His hard work, dedication and willingness to do whatever Oracle Team USA asked of him helped him land his new gig as grinder.
    A physically demanding job, it is the grinder’s responsibility to operate the manual winches that raise and trim the sail and move the boom. This position has a significant impact on a racing yacht’s overall performance, but Dressler seems ready for the challenge.
    Team Oracle USA won the last two America’s Cup challenges in 2010 and 2013 and they returned for the 35th competition ready to defend their title. They will face off against the qualifying team beginning June 17 in Bermuda’s iconic Great Sound.
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  • Khaleel Jenkins graduated from Francis Parker School in 2015

    Parker Alumus Khaleel Jenkins Expected to Become Cal Poly's Newest Starting Quarterback

    Francis Parker School alumnus Khaleel Jenkins ‘15 is expected to take over as starting quarterback for California Polytechnic State University’s 2017 season. Soon to be a junior, Jenkins took the reins in Cal Poly’s first spring game last Saturday, May 6.

    Jenkins had a spectacular run at Parker. In his four-year career as a Lancer, Jenkins totaled 2,488 passing yards, 2,233 rushing yards, 7 interceptions, 38 touchdowns, 162 pass completions and a completion percentage of .497, according to MaxPreps.

    Jenkins is expected to continue that momentum at Cal Poly.

    “Our expectations are extremely high for Khaleel,” Mustangs Coach Tim Walsh told The Tribune, a newspaper based in San Luis Obispo. “I think the great thing is Khaleel has high expectations for himself,” Walsh added.  

    The 6-foot-2, 205-pound Jenkins comes from a family of athletes. His cousin and fellow Parker alumnus Deon Randall ‘10 became the all-time leading receiver in Yale University history as a senior during the 2014 season. Jenkins’ younger sister Keara, Class of 2020, is a starter on the Parker Girls Softball team.

    Jenkins himself played varsity basketball in addition to football at Parker. He was also selected as the Football Player of the Game four different times as a junior — twice for offense and twice for defense — and was named Player of the Year as a senior during the 2014 season.

    Read more at The Tribune: https://goo.gl/H8cpwK
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Francis Parker School is a private, independent, coeducational, college preparatory day school for students in Junior Kindergarten through Grade 12 from across San Diego County. Founded in 1912, the Lower School is located on the Mission Hills Campus with the Upper and Middle Schools on the Linda Vista Campus. Parker's mission is to inspire a diverse community of independent thinkers whose academic excellence, global perspective and strength of character prepare them to make a meaningful difference in the world.

Mission Hills Campus Lower School

4201 Randolph Street
San Diego, CA 92103

Linda Vista Campus Middle/Upper School

6501 Linda Vista Road
San Diego, CA 92111
858 / 569-7900