Alumna Katharine Herrup ‘96 attended Nashoba Brooks School for only a year, but it was certainly a formative one.
It all started when she and her family moved from New York City to Concord right before the beginning of seventh grade.
“I attended Nashoba Brooks in eighth grade. I had never been to an all-girls school before or a school where there were only twenty-two people in my class,” she recalls. “It was a safe and supportive environment, two of the most important elements that grounded the rest of my education and which I have always tried to cultivate to lead a happy, successful, and well-balanced life.”
After Nashoba Brooks, Katharine attended Buckingham Browne and Nichols (BB&N) on the advice of her Grade 8 science teacher at Nashoba Brooks, Ms. Svatek. She suggested that Katharine attend BB&N because she thought she would benefit from being back in a city setting.
“I grew up in New York City, and I struggled with the move. But being back in an urban environment helped alleviate the stark contrast between the two places. I am tremendously grateful for Ms. Svatek’s insight and guidance at that period in my life,” she said.
For more than 15 years, Katharine has had a successful career in journalism. She began as a freelancer for The New York Sun and then became the opinion editor.
“I went onto work for Newsweek where I was a production editor and wrote about health, the environment, and book reviews. From there, I became the inaugural opinion editor at Reuters. While building the opinion section and recruiting new columnists for Reuters.com, I also wrote articles about business, technology, social entrepreneurship, education, and culture,” she said.
Katharine has always been passionate about writing. As a child she recalls writing in diaries and sending letters to friends and family members (before computers became so prevalent) in middle school. She went on to work for more formal publications in both high school and college.
“In high school, I wrote for BB&N’s newspaper called The Vanguard. In college, I was a reporter and editor for the University of Pennsylvania’s paper, The Daily Pennsylvanian. I also interned for NPR’s Justice Talking with Margot Adler, which was produced in Philadelphia,” she said.
The last piece she wrote was the most personal piece she had ever had published. “It was for a website called Modern Loss, which a friend and former colleague co-created, dedicated to sharing stories about loss and grief and what it is like to lose a loved one. It sounds heavy but there are many humorous and helpful stories,” said Katharine.
Even though it was only for a year, she credits her short time at Nashoba Brooks School with teaching her how to be fearless, and for helping her to discover her interest in science and math.
“Being a middle school girl at Nashoba Brooks is probably the best experience for which a teenage girl can ask for and have. Attending a very small, all-girls school allowed me to focus more on myself. I discovered I actually enjoyed math, which was quite a pleasant surprise. Even though I was unsure of my math skills, Ms. Vanasse assured me they were more than good enough to be a part of Math Counts and she encouraged me to join the team,” she recalls.
As for the future, she has been toying with the idea of possibly either writing a book, starting a podcast, or doing a series of pieces. “There are a couple of specific subjects surrounding health and healthcare, or lack thereof, in America I’d like to delve into deeper.”