March 2024

Inside Havergal

Headshot of Nicole Folkes.

Message from the Head of Boarding

Nicole Folkes

In the Boarding School, our commitment to wellbeing and community is at the heart of everything we do.

We continue to take advantage of our beautiful urban location within the city of Toronto. Students have experienced some of the world-class Arts and Culture Toronto provides (such as the Art Gallery of Ontario and live musical productions at The Royal Alexandra Theatre), participated in physical pursuits (such as sweating in a spin class, dancing in a hip hop class, ice skating in the heart of the city and roller skating at Union Station) and engaged in self-care activities (ranging from nature walks, rock climbing, yoga and a tufting class).

These initiatives underscore our unwavering dedication to nurturing a supportive community and developing meaningful connections that enhance the Boarding experience at Havergal. We believe that by prioritizing wellbeing, we create a community dedicated to nurturing compassion and empathetic relationships as we provide opportunities for student personal awareness and growth.

This year, we have added grade-focused programming to create opportunities for new students to connect with their peers. Beyond our Havergal community, we actively seek to broaden our connections. Collaborating with other boarding schools, we offer enriching experiences for our students to make new friends through community activities and social events.

Recently, our student leaders introduced an exciting new initiative—a spirit event designed to promote community spirit and friendly competition. Boarding Advisory Groups came together to participate in various games, earning points toward winning the Boarding Banner. This event not only encouraged teamwork and friendship, but also reinforced our commitment to fostering a strong sense of community within the Boarding School.

These initiatives underscore our unwavering dedication to nurturing a supportive community and developing meaningful connections that enhance the Boarding experience at Havergal.


Headshot of Brad Radin

Message from the Board of Governors

Brad Radin, Chair of The Havergal College Foundation Board of Directors  

The Havergal College Foundation is a registered charity that both receives and invests donations to support key priorities for Havergal College. The Foundation oversees an investment portfolio of mostly donor-endowed funds, valued at $31.3 million as of June 30, 2023. These endowed funds have been gifted over time by parents, Old Girls/Alums, graduating classes, faculty and staff. The Foundation disburses a certain percentage of the value of the endowed funds annually to the school.

Working with an external investment manager and in accordance with the Foundation’s Statement of Investment Policies and Objectives, the Foundation ensures that its resources are prudently invested with the aim of both growing and preserving capital while maintaining the ability to provide stable grants to the College for priorities such as student financial assistance.

The Foundation is governed by a board of nine Directors, including ex-officio appointments of Havergal’s Board of Governors and a member of the Havergal Old Girls Association.

Because Havergal’s annual revenues must cover not only the present year’s expenses, but also capital investment and infrastructure costs, fundraising is an essential ingredient to maintaining Havergal’s ongoing fiscal health and strength. We are grateful to generations of donors, past, present and future, for their generous contributions and ongoing belief in Havergal’s mission.


This Month

2023-24 Boarding Council group photo

Havergal’s Boarding Council

Morayo Osibajo, Boarding Prefect

Student leadership in Boarding is crucial to the wellbeing and sustainability of the Boarding School Program, which is why a group of students in Grades 9 to 12 were excited to join the Boarding Council to engage with the community more tangibly while building their transferable skills. 

Throughout my four years living at Havergal, I have seen the first-hand impacts of student leadership. Being a new student in a new city (or, for many, a new country) requires a lot of strength, courage and support. It is thanks to current students who are willing to guide, help and teach the new Boarding students that some find the transition into Boarding life less stressful. We are forever thankful to the student leaders who showed us their love for our Boarding School through their constant service, as they passed this love over to us. 

Previously, student leaders in Boarding were known as the Junior Don Team. However, this year we decided to restructure our leadership positions and create a Boarding Council to align with the leadership titles in the Day School.  

Although certain parts of our roles have stayed the same, we have also had the opportunity to implement new events into the program. One of those initiatives is our monthly spirit events! These are once-a-month activities in which Boarding Advisory Groups compete against each other to win advisory points, which determine the winners at the end of the year. These spirit events encourage collaboration, teamwork and connection between the students in their Boarding Advisory Group (who represent all grade levels in the Senior School). It is such an excellent new addition to our Boarding Program and reinforces the importance of community in Boarding. I’m proud to be a part of it.

Boarding students tapping a maple tree.

Boarding March Maple Madness Experience

Natalie Kwan, Boarding School Staff

Diverse programming at the Boarding School creates a supportive environment where our students continue to learn and grow outside of school hours. Fun-filled weekends are packed with opportunities to master a skill, adventure into new parts of the city and create meaningful connections with peers and the local community. Boarders can choose to participate in as many activities as they want—some events hosted this year include a visit to AGO for Black History Month, rock climbing at True North, ceramics and spa day.

Most recently, Havergal Boarders joined Upper Canada College Boarders at their Norval Outdoor School for a season of March Maple Madness. After a delicious pancake brunch at Stephen House, students had a chance to tour the sugar bush, identify trees ready for tapping and collect sap, which was then boiled into syrup. Did you know that it takes 40 gallons of sap to make one gallon of syrup? And did you know that while tapping makes a wound, it does not endanger the health of the tree? Everyone couldn’t stop sipping on freshly-made maple tea while learning these fun facts. Thank you to the wonderful Norval team for teaching us the history and science behind maple sugar production! 

Gator Gala 2024 logo

Gator Gala Ticket Sales Extended

It’s not too late to buy tickets for this year’s 2024 Carnival Gator Gala. Tickets are $150 each for all Upper School students and their adult guests (one parent or guardian per student) and include a choice of delicious Brazilian-inspired meal options, drinks, dancing, a photo booth, plus a few fun surprises! 

Purchase tickets here

Can You Donate to the Gator Gala Silent Auction or to the Event Swag Bags?

The auction offers something for everyone, with all proceeds going to the HCPA to support community engagement initiatives and school priorities. Amazing silent auction items include tickets to sporting events and concerts, art, jewellery and unique experiences like tours or “behind-the-scenes” opportunities at workplaces or venues. For silent auction donations, please contact Jenn Ocampo-King at [email protected] or Donna Wilson at [email protected]

Swag bags are a fan favourite for Gator Gala attendees. If you would like to help take this year’s swag bags to the next level, please consider a donation. Potential options could be lip gloss, specialty snacks, sunglasses, mini beauty products or any other item you feel the girls might like or that represents the Carnival theme. For swag bag donations, please contact Jeanette Lawrence at [email protected], Shelagh Carnegie at [email protected] or Kara Kennedy at [email protected].

Thank you for your support!

HCPA logo

2024–25 HCPA Nominations Now Open

Many exciting positions are open for the 2024–25 school year with the Havergal College Parent Association (HCPA). We strongly encourage parents to self-nominate or nominate someone you know who would like to join a dynamic, fun and engaging parent leadership team.

Please take a look at our HCPA Nomination Form to see a full list of open positions and to place a nomination.

A few things to note:

  • Nomination forms are due no later than April 12 at 9 pm. This year we have a new, simplified process with only one round of nominations in which you identify your top three choices.
  • New for next year: we have incorporated Grade Reps into the HCPA Committee (and have altered their roles and expectations slightly).

For further information, please contact Tanuja Gupta and Lucie Lin (2023-24 HCPA Co-Chairs) at [email protected].

Thank you for your interest in joining the HCPA!

JS A-mazing Race logo

JS A-mazing Race Tickets on Sale Now

The A-mazing Race is always one of the highlights of the year for our Junior School—this year will be no different! On Sunday, May 5, students and their partners (an adult over the age of 21) will join us on Havergal’s campus (outside, if weather permits) to engage in friendly competition with their House teams. 

In addition to participating in a series of games and challenges, participants will enjoy snacks and refreshments, and—most importantly—have fun while connecting with other members of our JS community. 

Purchase your tickets here

Tickets are $65 per person and must be purchased by Friday, April 5. Don’t forget to order your tickets and get ready to show your House spirit!

Moms Night Out logo

Save the Date for Moms’ Night Out at Lula Lounge

If you haven’t already done so, mark Thursday, May 23 in your calendars for the HCPA’s Moms’ Night Out (MNO) event! Our organizers have planned something a little different for 2024. The venue? This year, we’re hosting at Lula Lounge, a lively venue with a tropical theme. The activities? In addition to mingling over cocktails and appetizers, HC’s moms will have the opportunity to kick up their heels with a fun-filled salsa dance lesson.  

The invitation will be sent in early April. Watch your inbox—you’re not going to want to miss this year’s Moms’ Night Out!

Pre-Loved Uniforms Earth Week Sales

Support the planet and the HCPA by shopping the Pre-Loved Uniform team’s sales on Monday, April 22 from 3:30 to 7 pm and Tuesday, April 23 from 8 to 11 am outside the Junior School Learning Hub.  

Now is a great time to get an early jump on spring cleaning and look through closets for HC uniform items that might be too small, but are still in great shape. The HCPA has installed permanent collection bins across from the Learning Hub at the Junior School and in the alcove by the glass door entrance to the Upper School (across from the Green & Gold Shop). 

We gratefully accept skirts, tunics, pants, polo shirts, dress shirts, sweaters, 1/4 zip sweatshirts, jogging pants and blazers. Please note that we do not accept socks, green leggings, House shirts, customized sweatshirts, spirit wear, gym uniforms or white Grad blazers. 

When donating, please keep in mind that uniform items should be gently-used—no rips or stains, please!

Note that the HCPA Pre-Loved Uniform initiative is not affiliated with the HC Green & Gold Shop.

For more information, please email Maria Puthoff.

Inside Focus

From Mexico to Nigeria: Havergal’s Journey Across Continents

Alexandra Zourntos, Associate Director of Admissions

There’s a tiny silver suitcase in my office. It’s not filled with sunhats and SPF, but with Havergal-branded tablecloths, banners and green & gold swag. It’s my partner on the road, you might say.

Over the past year, my tiny but mighty partner has been towed across tarmacs, train stations and conference centres throughout Mexico, Barbados, Jamaica, South Korea, Vietnam, Japan, the UK, Nigeria (led by Nicole Folkes, Head of Boarding) and Bermuda (led by Emily Simms-Brown, Director of Admission).

Our affinity toward Boarding is incredibly strong at Havergal. We believe wholeheartedly in the environment’s ability to expand students’ horizon. As such, we remain committed to building global connections in thoroughly researched markets—both established and emerging. This of course leads to a lot of plane rides.

I have countless stories to share, from 48 hours of lost luggage in Mexico City (not the tiny silver one), to miscalculating the local currency in Ho Chi Minh and severely over-tipping a barista (I don’t regret it). However, it’s far more important to share my consistent inspiration and pride when representing a school as widely recognized and celebrated as Havergal College. Whether I’m connecting with Old Girls/Alums, meeting prospective families or presenting to agents, it’s clear to me that the Havergal name is cherished and sought-after in the vast world of education—a world where we’re so fortunate to be a part of a professional network of schools from the UK, US and Canada. 

As our travels continue in 2024-25, we’ll be visiting new and exciting markets, which will soon be shared with the community. My tiny silver suitcase will be awoken from its summer slumber and repacked with a freshly washed Havergal tablecloth as we set off to do what we love most: representing this magnificent institution, its growing Boarding Program and the inspiring people within it. If you or someone you know is in a city on Havergal’s travel itinerary, which can be found on this page of our website, please connect and say “hello!”


Meet Our Faculty & Staff

Headshot of Stephanie Houghton, Human Resources Manager at Havergal College.

Stephanie Houghton

Human Resources Manager

Stephanie Houghton joined Havergal in November of 2022 as our Human Resources Manager. She has over 20 years experience in Human Resources (HR) and has worked in both the private sector and not-for-profit world, previously working at Sanofi Aventis, Renascent, South East Toronto Family Health Team and March of Dimes Canada.

She has an Honours Social Sciences degree from the University of Ottawa, a Human Resources Management Certificate from Seneca College and has been a Certified Human Resources Leader since 2007.

At Havergal, Ms. Houghton’s role is to champion HR initiatives and support employees, with a focus on onboarding, recruitment, policy development, recognition, employee relations, legal compliance and health and safety.

She brings strong leadership and coaching skills with her to this role. Providing excellent customer service is an important element of her HR practice. She really enjoys working with employees and the HR team to support a positive work culture. In her 18 months on the job, she has loved learning what makes Havergal such a unique and special place to work.

Ms. Houghton also appreciates that on most days she’s able to go out for a noon-time walk—rain or shine—which helps support her wellness at work. On a personal level, she loves cheering on her teenage son who plays rep level baseball in Scarborough. In her downtime, she enjoys reading and doing puzzles.