A lot of students and alumni would say that they have found their home away from home at Kents Hill School. It’s true, the sense of community and family is unmatched, and that stands to reason as many actual siblings attend the school together! As we write this, three students from the same family are current Kents Hill students, two of which will graduate on June 5 and the third of which is a member of the Class of 2023. We are, of course, talking about the fabulous Feeneys!
Em F. ’21, Delaney F. ’21, and Kaylee F. ’23 are each valuable members of our community and we are excited to feature them as they are as different as they are incredible.
Different Lives on The Hill
To begin with, their interests are highly varied, but luckily, there have been plenty of options for them to choose from over the years.
Kaylee says it best, “Most of us have starkly different interests, which many people find interesting since we’re all related. One thing that’s different about me is that I love art and drawing, but none of my other siblings are interested in it as much as I am. We also all had different sports interests; my sister and I played Soccer and Track, while Em was more interested in Fencing and Horseback riding. I’m glad that we all found our own special talents and interests because it makes life more interesting to have variety in what people enjoy.”
Academically, Delaney prefers science and math, which sets her apart from her siblings. She says, “I’m interested in the sciences, so I’m the more math/science-focused sibling. I also like taking on leadership roles. We are all a little similar, but I think our interests and goals are all unique.”
Em points out that traditional team sports are more of a focus for Delaney and Kaylee. “I'm definitely not as athletic as they are. They are absolutely fierce when it comes to sports whereas I've just done my own thing. I like to think the thing that tends to stand out to people when they meet me and my siblings is my passion for my interests. I have a tendency to ‘deep dive’ on certain subjects (like the Franklin Expedition of 1845, for example) and I have a pretty good memory, which definitely helps when it comes to history.”
Delaney confirms the love for athletics that Em discussed and adds to it. She says, “I love playing soccer on the Turf, participating in student government, and eating with my friends in the Alfond Dining Commons.”
Kaylee says, “I have a lot of interests at this school, because of how much Kents Hill lets you explore and experiment with different things, but I’d have to say my three favorite things are art, soccer, and writing. At Kents Hill, I’m able to extensively pursue all of these things, and it also opens me up to start thinking of possible career options from the things I enjoy.”
And those different interests have led to several serious accomplishments! For example, Kaylee says, “As a part of Green Team I helped revamp the recycling system across campus and design logos to use for that. I’ve also had other accomplishments, such as winning athletic and scholarly awards, helping out in community service activities around campus, and becoming part of the Student Council in past years.”
Delaney says, “Some of my big accomplishments were being elected class President my junior and senior years, being elected Girls Varsity Soccer captain for several years, joining Kents Hill’s chapter of the National Honor Society, and most recently accepting an appointment to the United States Naval Academy.”
Em chose to call out academics. “I think one of my major accomplishments at KH has to be my Independent Study of the Holocaust. A few weeks ago I put up a gallery exhibit in the Gruss-Bard Gallery in the Alfond Dining Commons that got a decent amount of attention. I was even asked to help teach two history classes on the Holocaust, using my gallery as a presentation (of sorts). I absolutely love being able to help teach others.”
Space to Be Your Full Self
The youngest Feeney, Kaylee, feels she can be herself at Kents Hill without pressure or expectations set by her older siblings. She says, “I definitely feel like I can spread my wings and do my own thing here at Kents Hill, and that’s especially important to me since I’m one of three siblings at this school. I’ve been given opportunities to choose what my own interests are, and I don’t feel like I’m being tied down to reflect what my siblings have done in the past, which is a huge relief to me.”
Delaney is happy to be able to offer her time and help to both of her siblings on campus. She says, “It is a great experience! Em and I are in the same grade, so we were always able to help each other out when we took the same classes. My little sister benefits from this because both of her older siblings can help her with her homework. Also, it’s so much fun to be on campus with my siblings and play on the same sports teams as them.”
Those feelings are similar for Em. “It has been a blast to be at KH with my siblings. De and I are in the same grade (she's a year younger than I am though) so we've been together in our paths through high school for the most part. We even shared a few of the same classes each year! But our relationship has grown stronger due to that; asking each other for help with homework or simply hanging with our friends. It's also become a bit of a joke that if you have all three of us together (we have a younger sister, KK) in the same space, then there might be a hole ripped in the time-space continuum,” says Em.
Choosing Kents Hill School
One thing the three siblings can agree on unanimously is why they chose Kents Hill—it felt like family. Delaney says, “It was a family decision for Em and me to go to Kents Hill, but one of the reasons we landed on it was the ‘homey’ feeling that we felt while taking tours and meeting enrolled students. No other school had the same feeling of connectedness or welcoming that Kents Hill did. Also, the opportunities presented by Kents Hill were one of a kind, which attracted our parents. They were jealous that we could try classes like woodworking and ceramics in high school.”
“I initially chose KHS because it felt so much like a family. Compared to the other schools we visited, it just felt more free and fun,” echos Em.
Kaylee says, “I chose to come to Kents Hill because of many factors, but what struck me the most was the friendly and welcoming atmosphere. When I first came to Kents Hill on a guided tour, everyone was so nice and I could feel the connectedness of the community. That was one of the biggest reasons my parents decided to let us go here, and why my siblings and I still love it to this day.”
As we mentioned, on June 5, 2021, two of the Feeney family will join the ranks of Kents Hill’s alumni with Delaney off to the United States Naval Academy and Em bound for The University of Maine at Orono, but we have a sneaking suspicion we’ll see their faces a lot between home games, visits with former faculty members, reunions, and more. We are so happy to have had this trifecta on The Hill and wish each of them the best possible success in anything they choose to do!