A Place to Call Home


We’ve arranged the campus into five residential neighborhoods called clusters; everyone (day students too!) belongs to one, and that feeling of belonging is the point. Each cluster includes a handful of dorms, about 220 students, 40 faculty families, a dean, and student leadership positions. Orientation, special events, weekly study breaks, cluster munches—all of these things are organized by cluster.

Take a tour of Double Brick House with a student prefect.
Boarding Students

More than 800 of our students live on campus. The smallest dorm has four students; the largest has 44. Some dorms are quaint cottages and others are handsome brick buildings: all of them have faculty house counselors and student mentors—essential sources of snacks and comfy chairs, advice and guidance. Every dorm generates its own culture, its own flurry of social events, shared meals, improvised traditions, random outings, and overall spirit. All of them feel, in ways large and small, like home.

Day Students

Day students’ days are as busy and exciting as those of their boarding peers. The biggest difference? They go home to sleep. Day students are fully integrated into all cluster, class, athletic, special event, and social activities and are encouraged to eat all meals at Paresky Commons. On weekends, day students are welcome to sleep over in a dorm with friends or host boarding students at their homes (with appropriate permission, of course).

International Students

PA’s international student coordinator serves as an advisor for international students in the Phillips Academy community and works to promote understanding and appreciation of foreign cultures and languages. They also assist international students and their families with all aspects of their life here at Phillips Academy, serves as an academic advisor to the one-year international seniors, issues I-20 forms, and organizes a special two-and-a-half day student orientation prior to the beginning of school to help new international students start their experience with confidence. Some international students choose to return home during school breaks, others elect to stay with host families within our community.

Residential Life Team

Susan Tsao Esty, PhD, P’22
Dean of Students and Residential Life

David Gardner
Assistant Dean of Students

Aya Murata
Assistant Dean of Students

Cluster Deans
  • Taylor Washburn '03, Abbot
  • Austin Washington, Flagstaff
  • Jill Meyer '09, Pine Knoll
  • Kit Leckerling, West Quad North
  • Jennifer Weissbach, West Quad South
House Counselors

The house counselors are the primary adults responsible for the students living in their dormitories. Resident house counselors live within the dormitory buildings, while complementary house counselors are assigned to be on duty in dorms on certain nights and weekends, but do not actually live in the buildings. House counselors are the primary liaison with parents and work with advisors to help and support the students in their dorms.

Paresky Commons

Paresky Commons is our fabulous two-story dining hall and possibly the archetypal Andover social experience. We all eat here, we all spend hours talking here; the food is amazing, fresh, healthy, and global. It’s a great place to meet with friends and make new ones. It’s also home to Susie’s, a student lounge during the week that hosts packed dances on many Saturday nights.

The town of Andover

A short walk from campus. It has ice cream and burgers and cozy coffee shops. It has gourmet pizza, and a bookstore with a fireplace, and a Mexican restaurant with a live mariachi band on Wednesdays. It’s full of helpful people and excellent, useful stores, and you will probably visit at least once a week.

Boston and beyond

Boston is so close! Cambridge, too! There’s a commuter rail station in town, walkable from campus; fares are cheap, and you can get to North Station (which connects to the “T” subway) in about 40 minutes. What this means is that you have easy access to world-class culture, colleges, restaurants, and shopping; sight-seeing cruises on beautiful Boston Harbor; sporting events, historic sites, and so on.

What To Expect

9th Grade

Ninth grade boarders live in junior dormitories with house counselors who have experience working with our youngest students. Junior dorms provide comfort and a chance for our youngest students to get to know others who are also new to campus.

All junior dorms are run by faculty members who live in the dorms and are called house counselors. Upper class prefects are also selected to live in the junior dorms to help the ninth graders transition and to serve as big brothers/big sisters to the ninth grade students. The prefects also assist the house counselors by helping with enforcement of study hours, check-in each night and lights out.

The EBI seminar for juniors, Foundations: The End Depends Upon the Beginning, meets for one period every full week of school throughout the year and is facilitated by faculty members who are assisted by prefects or day-student mentors.

Lights Out

On the nights before classes we have a mandatory 11 p.m. lights out rule.

outside a dorm with lights on at night

Study Hours

To encourage a campus-wide study environment we require all junior, lower, and upper boarders to sign into their dorms by 8 p.m.

Studying with a Laptop

10th Grade

At Andover, all 10th graders transition into the upper class dorms at the start of the year. New and returning lowers join the 11th graders and seniors in dorms ranging in size from as few as five students to as many as 35 students, depending on personal preference and availability. The fact that all lowers, old and new, transition to new dorms makes the transition easier for incoming students because the new lowers are not the only students new to the dorm community. The idea is that all lowers are new to the upper class dorms and thus the new and returning students are on some common ground as they start the school year and make connections in their new home on campus.

Typically new lowers will live in doubles with a roommate who is also a new lower. Also most often, the new lowers are placed in the larger dorms so that they might meet and connect with a large number of students with diverse interests and backgrounds. Faculty house counselors are joined by Proctors who assist in managing and organizing the dorm. These proctors are seniors who are selected by the faculty to serve as mentors and leaders. Many students, once situated in a dorm, remain in that dorm for the remainder of their time at Andover as they build connections to the other students as well as the house counselors in the dorm.

The EBI seminar for lowers, Endeavors of the Head, Heart and Hands, meets for one period every full week of school throughout the year and is facilitated by faculty members and specially trained members of the senior class, known as EBI Seniors.

Dorm Pride

Fostered through meetings, group outings and study breaks, most students think that where they live is the best spot on campus.

Pictures on the Wall

House Counselors

Faculty members who live in the dorms and who, most often, teach, coach and advise students in 10th, 11th and 12th grades.

students gathered around a house counselor's dining room table

11th Grade

New uppers are placed in upper class dorms with students in grades 10-PG. In the spring before arriving to campus, new students have the opportunity to fill out a housing request card and state some of their housing preferences (i.e. single room, double room etc.) We pair new Uppers with other new Uppers so that they can help each other with the transition. Whenever possible, we also attempt to place small groups of new Uppers in a dorm together (mixed in with other new students and current students).

The EBI seminar for uppers, Connections, meets for nine classroom sessions across the fall and winter terms and is facilitated by faculty members.

Put Down Roots

Many students, once situated in a dorm, remain in that dorm for the remainder of their time at Andover.

Bartlet Hall Brick

Dorm Lottery

Each spring students indicate their preferences of where they would like to live the following year. Assignments are announced in August.

Girl Sitting on a Bed

12th Grade & Post Graduates

PGs and one-year seniors do not live in separate dorms and are included in the full residential program at Andover. Typically PGs and one-year seniors are paired together with a roommate (PGs with PGs, one-year seniors with one-year seniors) and placed in a large, upper class dorm. At Andover these large dorms usually house up to 35 students with three house counselors living in the dorm.

Occasionally, based on student requests and/or housing needs, PGs and one-year seniors will live in a single room. Also occasionally some PGs and one-year seniors will opt to live in one of the smaller dorms on campus – typically a dorm of 10 to 15 students with one or two house counselors (depending on the numbers). These options are available depending on the needs and interests of the new students. All PGs and one-year seniors are encouraged to live in the dorms here, even if they are from Andover or a neighboring town.

The EBI seminar for seniors, Transitions, meets twice per term in small groups and is facilitated by faculty members.

Embrace the Dorms

The one-year experience for older students is largely centered around easing the transition to college.

Two Girls Talking

Find Structure

Experience living away from home, managing a busy schedule independently, and interacting with peers and adults in a diverse community.

Three Boys Playing Guitars

Make Yourself at Home

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Every dorm generates its own culture, its own vortex of shared meals, improvised traditions, social events, random outings, and overall spirit.

Be free to be yourself. Laugh frequently and loudly.

Proctors are like older siblings. They help make dorm life fun and act as liaisons between house counselors and students.

It's the idea of a bigger family. You prop your door open, people come by and ask how your day is going.

All dorms have house counselors and student mentors—essential sources of snacks and comfy chairs, advice and guidance.

Make friends that you will have for the rest of your life.

Day students are welcome to stay in dorms on weekends; many day students frequently take advantage of this opportunity.

The friends you make here - sharing a room, helping each other out, or eating pizza - are often your friends for life - ask an alumni, they will tell you!