Though the label “day student” exists at Deerfield to describe a student who sleeps at home rather than in a dorm room, I do not believe that the label determines a student’s social success. One of my best friends since freshman year is a day student and I know that she has had a more positive social experience as a day student (or a more “Deerfield Involved” one) than many others, but I do not attribute this to anything other than the amount of time that she spends on campus.
I understand that as a day student at Deerfield one has his or her feet in two different worlds, the world at Deerfield and the world at home with family. Balancing time spent in each of these worlds is something that only a day student could understand, and I know this is not an easy task.
The school has commitments which require attendance from early in the morning to often late in the evening, usually seven days a week. Boarding students deal with these responsibilities only on campus, whereas day students have to deal with them while also balancing the expectations at home (a home that could be up to a thirty minute drive away from Deerfield.) Because of this I understand that it may be impossible for some day students to spend the necessary amount of time on campus to create the ideal social situation at Deerfield, but the more time spent on campus the better.
Even more important than the amount of time spent at Deerfield is an individual’s personality and general attitude as a Deerfield student. Confidence, humor and kindness are examples of general qualities that any person would look for in close friends, and I think that when day students feel as if they aren’t being included they shouldn’t blame their label as a day student, they should instead evaluate their priorities- not as a day student but as a Deerfield student.