Dear Members of the Newark Academy Community,
2019-2020 will be remembered as a year in which Newark Academy not only upheld our mission — to contribute to the world engaged individuals instilled with a passion for learning, a standard of excellence, and a generosity of spirit — but also thrived during an unprecedented period shaped by a global pandemic and a nationwide reckoning around issues of racial justice. The NA community did not shield itself from these issues, but rather sought to respond in ways that informed and educated our students.
We began the school year with a focus on NA’s continued growth, as outlined in the 2019-2023 Strategic Plan, and we asked you to support these efforts in order to make a greater impact on our students’ education. I am pleased to report that the generosity of Newark Academy’s alumni, parents, trustees, faculty, staff and friends enabled the 2019-2020 annual fund to reach an all-time high of $1.1 million.
Thanks to your support we have been able to enhance the NA experience and redefine ways of building community. This year, our students were introduced to accomplished artists, activists and change-makers who served as guest speakers and brought exposure to new modes of thinking, while preparing and inspiring NA students for future careers.
Your contributions paved the way for improvements of our infrastructure that further support NA arts and athletics. These include the completion of our thoroughly renovated Coraci Performance Hall, which will seat 750 during musical and theatrical performances, morning meetings and community gatherings. It features state-of-the-art lighting, excellent acoustics and a two-tiered production booth. The Cetrulo Family Fencing Center also underwent a complete renovation and has become one of the finest fencing centers in the United States. It is now a point of pride for our championship-level fencing program.
In March 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic forced NA to close the campus, our community was able to quickly pivot to a remote teaching, learning and working environment thanks to your support. Outdoor tents, hundreds of partitions, improved ventilation systems, and reorganized spaces allowed us to remain fully in-person and safe for the fall semester. NA continues to utilize your investments to support reimagined, online experiences fueled by our technological and physical plant upgrades. The nearly $25,000 in gifts received during the 2020 Teacher Appreciation Day, as well as additional funds, assisted our educators’ professional development during this time.
Newark Academy was also able to build community in new and unique ways. Despite disruptions to their senior year, the Class of 2020 celebrated their achievements through multiple, creatively executed NA events. Alumni reconnected during in-person gatherings, a broad range of alumni events on Zoom and the first-ever, virtual NA reunion.
Despite the limitations imposed by the pandemic, the summer was a period of unusual activity. We engaged the entire NA community during the Equity and Inclusion Summit. Our summer programs served more than 1,000 students in academic and athletic experiences that were both online and outdoors.
I am pleased to present the 2019-2020 Annual Report on Giving as a testament to the many ways in which you have contributed to NA’s resilience and growth.
On behalf of our entire community, I sincerely thank you. It is through your support that we are capable of continued growth, and it is through your support that we will continue to make an impact that truly lasts a lifetime.
Donald M. Austin
Head of School