By Halle Hallowell ’19

Lincoln Academy is a well known high school with a great reputation that has existed for a very very long time, but not always in its present location.  In viewing the history of Lincoln Academy I saw it began its life on River Road in a wooden building and only had 87 students.  That was over 200 years ago and back then it was established as a private school preparing students for Bowdoin College, one of the most respected colleges in the United States. I figure a high school with such a significant goal was destined for success.

That building on River Road burned in 1828 and the Academy was moved to Academy Hill and the building with the belltower is the original. Now, look where Lincoln Academy is today.  Lincoln Academy is not only preparing students for Bowdoin College, it is preparing students for colleges all over the world and their enrollment is close to 600 students.  However, most importantly Lincoln Academy is preparing students to survive in life, in the real world, no matter what the students financial means, academic capabilities or backgrounds are.  There is no more testing to enroll, there is no more class distinction. The staff is looking at students individually and pulling out the best of their capabilities and expanding on them. Our community is lucky to have the availability of classes at or through Lincoln Academy for varied trades that the school offers. No one is put in a category here and expected to perform just like the person next to them. All talents and individuality are recognized, respected and developed.

“It has been  a privilege to spend my four years of high school here at Lincoln Academy. It has changed a lot since freshmen year, such as expanding its culture, changing the dining commons around, adding dorms, a new ATEC building, and new calendar change. That in itself has been challenging but all in all I have had fun, made many new friends and have met and have been taught by many great teachers.” says senior Brett McLain.  Lincoln Academy has expanded over the years to accommodate the needs of the towns and its students. Lincoln Academy has many dedicated followers who have graduated from there or has a close personal interest in the quality and success of the school.

International students in the LA dorm. Photo courtesy of Missy Abbott.

In addition to local students, Lincoln Academy is home to students from around the world. According to Lincoln Academy’s web page the boarding students are from 19 different countries.  Because we all learn from each other, local students and our townspeople cannot help but expand their own cultural knowledge from the exposure to the residential students living on campus at Lincoln Academy. Their existence here not only makes the world smaller, it broadens knowledge, appreciation and acceptance of different customs by everyone. During vacations many of the boarding students do not go home, but stay in the area in private homes.  When they are housed in family homes in the community, it gives both the student and the family a greater chance to connect on a more personal level and better understand each other’s languages and ways of life.  Staying with a family and living in a family environment most probably gives the residential student a stronger sense of security when living so far from home.

When you think of Lincoln Academy’s beginning, what do you think the founding forefathers would say about it now? Even though they started the Academy as a private school to make sure students were ready for college, I am sure they would be happy to see the opportunities Lincoln Academy is giving all of its students today. The physical growth of the Academy would be an overwhelming thought to someone that lived 200 years ago. However, the many additions that were added to the school over the years were needed to accommodate progress. The founding fathers would be in awe to see what they started has lead to the Lincoln Academy of today.  It has been the dedication of many who have worked and contributed to the school over the years that has made Lincoln Academy the quality school it is.

girls' soccer

Sophomore Allison York during a girls’ soccer game.

The sports department is a very important part of Lincoln Academy. Our local Newspapers are filled with pictures and news of the games played there. They are descriptive in the happenings of each game and its results. New fields have been built to accommodate the school’s growth and the player’s comfort. The new soccer field is perfect as are the softball and baseball fields. Lacrosse is offered, as is just about any sport you would want to play. Lincoln Academy was recently represented by one of the best student golf players in the state. The music and band programs are beyond expectation with many talented students being able to utilize their amazing skills.

Another extraordinary aspect at Lincoln Academy is their health center.  The students can utilize it just as they would any medical office. There is a doctor and a nurse practitioner on staff as well as a licensed social worker. Helping students maintain physical and mental health as well as being ready for any emergency is a priority at Lincoln Academy.

Lastly, I want to mention this school has a great Code of Ethics Policy. They believe in no discrimination against anyone and have acceptance of all races, religions and gender. All of Lincoln’s classes and activities are available to all.  Lincoln Academy promises no discrimination in any way. Fairness and equality always produces happiness and gives hope to those of lesser fortune. Hope give students motivation to survive and prosper and make a better life for themselves. Lincoln Academy offers hope on a personal and professional level and so very much more.

Author Halle Hallowell

Thank you Lincoln Academy for being my school and for being a school to many others that have gone on before and those that will come here later. You are a beacon for many and a place to make memories that will be cherished forever.

Halle Hallowell is a Lincoln Academy sophomore in the Yearbook and Communications Class.