Health and Wellness

Andover’s founders charged the head of school with convincing students “of the several great duties they owe to . . . their neighbour, and themselves.” Self-awareness remains just as important today: health, balance, and resilience are essential to a life of sustained and meaningful contribution. But the outward-looking element of this historical imperative has become even more compelling thanks to a student body from across the country and around the world.

The Rebecca M. Sykes Wellness Center

The building and its programing are an affirmation of the importance of health and wellness in all its forms—physical and emotional, individual and community. The Sykes Wellness Center offers medical services, psychological counseling, and programs (yoga and meditation, health education, and CPR training) that help students, faculty, and staff balance work and play and learn to treat mind and body as parts of the same invaluable whole.  

The Counseling Center, located on the garden level of the wellness center, has two primary roles: to serve the individual psychological needs of students and to foster the psychological health and well-being of the entire Phillips Academy community. Our services include individual and group counseling, wellness programs, specialized training programs, and consultation services to parents, teachers, and departments. 

The Rebecca M. Sykes Wellness Center was built on the premise that health and wellness represent forms of excellence inextricably linked to the intellectual lives of students. Take a look inside and learn how the school’s curriculum and programs are evolving to fulfill the needs of today’s students.

EBI (Empathy, Balance, and Inclusion)

As a complement to our academic, arts, and athletic offerings, our juniors (9th-graders) and lowers (10th-graders) meet with a small group of their peers to relax, reflect, and identify ways to be at their best as students and community members. EBI seminar sessions cover topics including understanding of self and others, communication, healthy relationships, self-care, and decision making.

Juniors
Foundations: The End Depends Upon the Beginning meets for one period during every full week of school throughout the year and is facilitated by a faculty member who is assisted by a prefect or day-student mentor. 

Lowers
Endeavors meets for one period during every full week of school throughout the year and is facilitated by a faculty member and a specially trained member of the senior class. 

Wellness Programming

Over the course of the academic year, at least four programs will be dedicated to all-class discussions about health and wellness topics. Such programs focus our community’s attention on specific issues of health and wellness. Programs include risk-avoidance topics such as alcohol and substance abuse awareness, date rape, and eating disorders as well as health promotion topics such as the psychology of happiness, meditation, and stress-reduction activities. In addition, optional wellness activities—yoga, Zumba, and meditation—are scheduled most weekends to reduce stress and promote wellness. 

Healthy Relationships

At Andover, we strive to help students develop close connections to a diverse group of acquaintances, classmates, teammates, and friends. We seek to create a community of kindness and respect, acknowledging that an intentionally diverse community can present opportunities and challenges involving race, class, gender, religion, sexuality, differing abilities, or any other core issue of identity. We address these challenges in many contexts, including All-School Meeting, CAMD functions, cluster and dorm meetings, informal conversations with teachers and advisors, and more.

There is a nurse at the Sykes Wellness Center 

24/7

and a physician and counselor on-call while school is in session.

The wellness center is open for urgent and routine care Monday—Friday, 

9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Call us at 

978-749-4455

Nutribilia

Phillips Academy’s official nutrition blog, run by our nutritionist, Aggie Kip, is designed to educate and inform as well as serve as a forum for all nutrition-related topics.

Meet the Wellness Team

The health and care of our students is top priority for the Sykes Center staff.

Amy Patel

Medical Director, Wellness Educator

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Sandra Lopez-Morales ’97

Director of Psychological Services, Wellness Educator

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Susan Esty

Director of Wellness Education

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Suzanne Heon

Interim Director of Psychological Services, Psychological Counselor, Wellness Educator

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Aggie Kip

Nutritionist, Registered Dietician

Sarah Robinson

Nurse practitioner/Wellness Educator/Summer Session Director of Clinical Services

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Cathy Golas, P’18

Cathy has more than 25 years of experience in the health care and education industries.

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Practicing Empathy and Balance

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