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Mason Rudolfs

Class of '16

Mason Rudolfs

1) How did Radcliffe (or a teacher there) help you and in what way?

I was diagnosed with Dyslexia when I was in the first grade, and at the time, I was in public school, and they didn't have a plan at all to help me overcome it. I then transferred to Radcliffe Creek School, and when I got there, I was ashamed of my reading ability, shy, and believing that I wasn't good at anything. At Radcliffe, I was put into a reading class where it was just me and two other students. I quickly learned that the other students also struggled with reading, which took the pressure off of not looking foolish in front of them and not worrying about reading a word wrong. Being in a school where kids thought the same way I did and struggled in the same areas as well allowed me to come out of my shell because I knew that I wasn't just dealing with this on my own. Radcliffe taught me how to become a better reader and they taught me confidence in whatever I am doing.

2) When did you attend Radcliffe?

I attended Radcliffe Creek School for seven years from 2nd grade to 8th grade. I was there from 2009 to when I graduated in 2016.

3) How did Radcliffe prepare you for your next steps? ie Gunston, VMI

The best skill that Radcliffe teaches you is to have confidence and, specifically, how to fail with confidence and not to get discouraged by that failure. They teach you to jump into anything, even if you have never done it before, with no fear of failure. When I went to The Gunston School after Radcliffe, I was never discouraged if I got a bad grade on a test because I knew that I could do better; I just needed to change my studying and find a new strategy. When I went to college at the Virginia Military Institute, the first year there is very intense, filled with a lot of stress and making decisions under pressure; you would always, at some point or another, question if you could make it. I would always tell myself if I had a bad day that tomorrow is a different day, and it didn't matter what happened that day. Radcliffe instilled in me a never-quit attitude and to always look forward after failure. 

4) What advice do you have for current Radcliffe students?

My advice for current Radcliffe students is to try new things outside their comfort zone, join the Radcliffe play, join the sports teams that Radcliffe offers, and to do anything that makes them nervous or apprehensive. If, for some reason, when you're doing these activities, you fall on your face or make yourself look foolish, it's no big deal because you always have the support of your Radcliffe family behind you.   

5) What would you say to a prospective parent who is nervous for their child and is thinking about sending them to Radcliffe?

Radcliffe Creek School is a school that I can honestly say is like no other, because it is really just a big family. Teachers are so committed to their students that they will treat their students like their own sons and daughters. I speak from direct experience that the peers that I was with and the teachers there were like a second family to me. There is no doubt that I would not be where I am today without having gone to Radcliffe, that is how life changing a Radcliffe Creek School education is. 

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