Life at Gow
Life outside the classroom is part of our program—an active and fun part that brings us together as a united Gow while promoting leadership development, social and emotional growth, executive functioning, healthy decision-making, and self-advocacy skills.
Clubs and Activities
Student interest determines the clubs active on campus. A recent year brought the Green Team, Operation Hope Club, Culture Committee, Yearbook, Model United Nations, Music Ensemble, Gow Vocalist, Comic Book Enthusiasts, Engineering Club, and Broadcast Journalism Club. Other times, students have come together around activities as different as poetry and pond hockey. Organizations such as Student Council and the Crimson Key Club provide more opportunities for growth and leadership, as do positions like Headwaiters and Resident Assistants.
Officially, upper schoolers must complete six to 12 hours of community service annually depending on their grade, while middle schoolers work together on a group service project. In actuality, our students do much more than that. Some volunteer individually, others as part of campus organizations, including Junior Firefighters (South Wales Fire Company), Health Office Assistants, Library Assistants, and Ski Loaders. Over a recent five-year period, Gow students performed more than 10,000 hours of community service.
Gow’s dorms provide a comfortable and supportive living experience in which to learn habits and skills they’ll need in college. Daily chores, known as house jobs, instill a sense of responsibility. Living with roommates helps develop the collaborative spirit for which Govians are known, as well as long-lasting friendships. Dorm parents provide supervision, guidance, and a surrogate family.
Etiquette and other social lessons are served alongside the buffet-style cuisine in the light-filled dining hall. During Gow’s more structured breakfasts and lunches, students and teachers are assigned to tables during scheduled times. At dinner, students may eat with whom they choose and come and go within an assigned period. Faculty members’ spouses and children often join in, enhancing the family atmosphere.
After Saturday classes end, students have plenty of choices. The recreational facilities of the Gow Center, including a weight room, gyms, Table Tennis, billiards, and foosball, are open much of the time. Off-campus trips might go to the local Target and multiplex, a ski slope, pro or collegiate sporting event, amusement or water park, theater, skate park, paint ball, or tourist attraction such as Niagara Falls, to name a few. Students may attend a dance at a local school or here at Gow, where Student Council hosts two or three dances a year. Much-anticipated weekends include Winter Carnival, with events ranging from a human dog sled race to a pie-eating contest, and Spring Fest.
All these activities, plus athletics, keep students very busy. Both boarding and day students can take part in all aspects of student life, with the exception of day students actually staying in the dorms.