When I think of the concept of a Deerfield Boy, what comes immediately to mind is the well-rounded athlete, student and person who excels at everything he does. Though this seems entirely unrealistic for the vast majority of us, it is an admirable goal to work towards.
But what, in practice, defines the Deerfield boy? Well, among us there are great students, elite athletes and talented musicians, but by Deerfield standards, relatively few of us are two or more of those. Most of us are, to some extent, specialized.
Now let me ask this—of the skills that I just listed, what trait do fellow students value most? I would argue that to his peers, the most revered Deerfield boy is the elite athlete who is respected for his talents on the field, court or rink. I would further point out that this is a product of the school’s culture, since a high priority is given to athletics here.
Is this an issue? No. On the contrary, I think that since our school’s identity is so deeply rooted in athletic excellence, it would be a mistake to try and change who the Deerfield boy is. Rather, we should keep in mind the overarching values that define him—smart, athletic and decent-—and we should continue to strive to be that way.