Ninth Grade

Ninth graders have their own social events and grade-focused presentations, and live in dorms together. This academic and social support provides a strong foundation for success at Williston.

The ratio of students to advisors at Williston. To give new students an extra level of support and guidance, advisors meet regularly with students and as a group.
The number of ninth grade students this year, hailing from more than 11 countries, including Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong, Bermuda, Macau, Mexico, and Vietnam
Number of advisors in Ninth Grade Program, all of whom specialize in students this age.

Overnight Orientation Trip

Bring your appetite for s’mores and prepare for some awesome bonding activities when the entire ninth grade departs for an overnight of outdoor fun!

Dorms Dedicated to Ninth Graders

First-years live together in the dorms because they share similar needs: the need to talk about their day, the need for study time before an exam, the need to make a big bowl of popcorn and watch movies outside around the fire pits with their friends.

Class Rep Leadership Opportunities

Opportunities for leadership positions abound in ninth grade. We’ve got a toolbox for you to use if you’re looking for a challenge outside the classroom.

Special Ninth Grade Curriculum

Ninth graders have their own version of a life and leadership curriculum that focuses on first-year success. The guiding principles? Curiosity, Organization, Reflection, and Empathy.

Social Events That Build Community

Orientation is just the beginning. Ninth graders also host a day-student-sleepover in the dorm, compete in an advisory dodge ball game, go head-to-head during trivia night, and have a T-shirt design contest social.

Matt Sawyer and Allison Marsland

Matt Sawyer and Allison Marsland co-coordinate the Ninth Grade Program. These longtime dormitory heads know what it takes to make students feel at home. A dorm parent since 1994, Matt lives in our brand-new freshman boys’ residence with his family. On any given evening, you’ll find him giving extra help, playing pool, and arguing with students about why Boston is the best sports city in America. Allison Marsland, dorm parent since 1992, lives in Wold House with her family and lovable golden retrievers. Her favorite activities: encouraging a spontaneous dance party, baking massive amounts of cupcakes for a dorm birthday, and putting together the ingredients for a mug night.

Wildcat Words

"No matter where I looked, there were classmates and teachers willing to help me out and thrilled to introduce me to their interests."


"At Williston, I was encouraged and mentored by my teachers, coaches, friends, teammates, and classmates."


"Taking a leap to a boarding school community can be an intimidating one, but the tight knit community will help make the transition very smooth."


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