House Cup: A thoughtful rebranding

Theresa Fu and Anusha Srivastava


Juniors gather in Upper Corbin to complete a puzzle for House Cup points. (Photo by Anusha Srivastava)

   Beginning in 2004, the House Cup has served as the primary tool for engaging in school spirit and motivating friendly competition between four houses: Sargent, Bird, Lewis, and Welch. However at the end of last year, class presidents strode onto the Cressey stage and fought for new House allegiances– breaking away from the traditionally-assigned 18 year-old House Cup.  

   Introduced by Colley Bell (former dean) and revised by Adam Gerber and Chris Dozois, the House Cup’s initial goal was to increase and build school spirit. Each house name was chosen as a tribute to past Head of Schools– William Marther Lewis, Sabra Sargent, Alfred Gardner Welch, and John A. Bird– who contributed to molding LFA into what we all know today. 

   In previous years, students, faculty, and staff were randomly divided into houses– with the exception of siblings– taking inspiration from the housing competitions at British boarding schools. The intention was to encourage vertical integration as Montgomery Gold ‘23, one of the two new House Cup prefects for the 2022 to 2023 year, remarked, “This was designed to promote collaboration amongst different grade levels… juniors working with sophomores, freshmen with seniors, and so on.”

   However, the House Cup has taken on a renovation. Rather than an amalgamation of differing-grade levels, houses are now composed of individual classes: seniors in Bird, juniors in Sargent, sophomores in Welch, and freshman in Lewis. Behind this change, Anton Walvoord ‘23, the other House Cup prefect, explained, “In the past, a lot of people have struggled to find a reason to support their house, but with the change, people are given an opportunity to have a better connection with their house because they are participating with their class and friends, allowing for stronger collaboration.” 

   The hope is that by establishing houses by classes, there will be renewed incentivization and competition spurred on by grade pride. Plus, as Gold described, focusing on “horizontal integration” may better suit high school social dynamics. Moving through this new school year, both prefects mentioned how they look forward to creating more engaging activities and hope to make this year as fun and spirited as possible.

   Now friends can work together to tackle the routinely-changing puzzles in upper Corbin, the notable February Frog Hunt, RA weekend, and more to come. The joy in these activities is – as Jon Freeman, ​​Director of Residential Life, described – that it “boosts school spirit and allows classes to ban together, causing more enthusiasm.”  In addition, the House Cup has been working with the Caxy Athletic Committee to increase the number of Pack the House events where students gather to celebrate their peers in sports to gain house points. 

   With end-of-the-year rewards and prospective interim prizes (such as jeans days, snacks, and gift cards), students should ready themselves for an exciting year of school spirit and partake in the freshly-revamped House Cup as an avenue for bonding and victory.