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Upper School

Student Life

Cultivating a passionately engaged and supportive student community is one of the most important goals of our school.
Upper School students are uniquely committed to participating in every aspect of the NSA experience. From academics to athletics to the arts, students find classmates—plus teachers, coaches, and advisors—who challenge them to take their ideas to the next level, who support them when they’re in doubt and who cheer them on when they confront their biggest obstacles. It’s this kind of peer group and community that helps students feel comfortable stepping outside of their comfort zone and taking the positive risks they need to become their best selves. It is also one of the main reasons why many students consider NSA to be their second home.

List of 3 items.

  • Honor Code

    Honor is truly “Above All” at NSA. Our Honor Code is more than just words. It is our commitment to place honesty and integrity above everything else, and each and every member of the community has a vital role to play in upholding this commitment that stays with students for a lifetime.

    Honor Code: As a responsible member of the student body of Nansemond-Suffolk Academy, I realize that everything I do must be above reproach. I will be honest with myself and with others. I will refrain from all acts of cheating, lying and stealing, and I will not tolerate those acts from others. I will actively encourage my fellow students to follow the highest standards of integrity.

    Honor Pledge:
    On my honor, I have neither given nor received any unauthorized help on this work, nor am I aware of any breach of the Honor Code, which I am required to report immediately.

    Code of Conduct: I will be truthful in word and deed. I will not use profane, offensive or inappropriate language. I will respect the rights, beliefs and property of others. I will abide by school rules. I will strive to be helpful and beneficial to all concerned. I will not engage in activity or behavior that is detrimental to the reputation of Nansemond-Suffolk Academy.
  • Traditions and Special Events

    NSA has established many cherished traditions that help promote a sense of community and provide continuity from one generation of students to the next. From Convocation to Commencement, the year is filled with events and celebrations in support of our students’ artistic, athletic and academic achievements.

    • Convocation: This all-school assembly officially celebrates the beginning of the school year.
    • Senior Luncheon: To kick-off their senior year, students join the faculty, staff and administration for a celebratory back-to-school luncheon prior to the first day of school.
    • Senior Social: Members of the Senior Class enjoy breakfast items at break on the first day of school, hosted by NSA’s alumni coordinator.
    • Honor Council Assembly: Upper School students pledge to uphold the Honor Code at an assembly at the beginning of each school year. A guest speaker presents an inspirational message as part of the program.
    • Club Fair: Held at the beginning of the school year in the Cafeteria, this event allows students to explore their options and join clubs that pique their interest.
    • Homecoming Week: This exciting October event provides a week of spirited activities where students dress-up each day to match a different theme. The classes also compete in a hall decorating contest. On Friday, the advisories are paired with Lower School classes or Middle School advisories to participate in games and/or spirited crafts, followed by an all-school pep-rally where the Homecoming Court is introduced and the Homecoming King is announced. At the evening football game, the Homecoming Queen and Princess are announced and several alumni activities are held on-campus. On Saturday evening, a dance is held on campus for Upper School students.
    • Ring Dance: Sponsored by the Senior Class in honor of the juniors, this festive event is held in early December. 
    • Norway Exchange Program: Since 1991, NSA has participated in an exchange program with two schools in Moss, Norway. In the fall, Norwegian students visit NSA to learn the culture by living with families, visiting local attractions and participating in school classes. NSA students then travel to Norway during Spring Break to reconnect with the student that they hosted and experience the Norwegian culture.
    • Junior/Senior Prom: This spring dance is a formal affair that is hosted by the juniors in honor of the seniors.
    • Day of Caring: Advisories partner with local organizations for this annual spring event. Students spend the entire school day giving back to the community by performing various tasks, such as cleaning, organizing, oyster reef restoration, removing litter and debris from parks and other maintenance or administrative tasks.
    • Senior On the Road Reunion: In the spring, the alumni coordinator surprises the Senior Class by taking the students on an unannounced field trip. They receive NSA alumni T-shirts and enjoy a day of fun activities like laser tag or miniature golf, followed by lunch at a local restaurant.
    • Upper School Awards Ceremony: Held in the spring for students and parents, this program celebrates the accomplishments of Upper School students
    • Senior Day: The families of seniors are invited to attend this special morning program that is held in May. The celebration begins with a brief ceremony around the flagpole in front of the school and then transitions to the Thomas W. Johnson Gymnasium in the Beazley Center. The class president presents a farewell message and members of the class share the class history, a senior poem and a class song. Following the program, a collection of photos and video clips from senior year are shown. The seniors are then welcomed as the newest members of the NSA Alumni Association.
    • Commencement: The ceremony takes place on the front lawn of the Upper School, weather permitting. The NSA Band plays “Pomp and Circumstance” as the procession marches out of the front doors of the Upper School. Two marshals from the Junior Class lead the way, carrying banners identifying our founding year and the graduating class, followed by the head of school, a guest speaker, the Board of Trustees, faculty members and the Senior Class. After speeches and the presentation of awards and diplomas, the faculty leads the recessional and forms an aisle to applaud the new graduates as they exit the ceremony and gather in front of the Upper School for a celebratory hat toss.
  • Clubs and Elected Positions

    It is important for every student at NSA to have an avenue to express him or herself, to have an opportunity to be a leader and to follow his or her passions. Clubs are scheduled to meet on a routine basis throughout the year during Community Time and are a great way for students to get involved and to assume leadership roles.

    • Service Clubs: Breast Cancer Awareness, HERO/GSA, SADD, Project for Awesome, Haitian Awareness, Helping Hands, ASSIST 3-D, Connecting with Kids, PATH: People Against Trafficking Humans, Outreach360, Spectrum, Mental Health Awareness, Child Abuse Prevention Society, Health,  Club, SPCA, Operation Smile, Roc Solid Foundation, Emergency Relief and Multi-Cultural Diversity
    • Interest Clubs: Robotics, Ultimate Frisbee, Saints Broadcasting Network, Math, Chemistry, Academic Team/Quiz Bowl, Right Brain, Dodgeball, Weather, 72, Boys’ Volleyball, Young Republicans, Young Democrats, Self Defense, French, Debate, Chess, NFL and Model United Nations
    • Judicial Council: Designed to promote student responsibility and accountability, the Judicial Council is comprised of five faculty members and eight student members. A senior serves as student chair of the Council. The role of the Judicial Council is to review more serious violations of school rules and recommend a course of action to the Dean of Students.
    • Honor Council: The Honor Council consists of eight student members, all elected by their respective classes. Additionally, three faculty members and one faculty alternate will be elected by the student body. Faculty members serve three-year rotating terms, and the faculty alternate serves a one-year term.
    • Student Council: The Upper School Student Council consists of five student officers and five representatives. The Student Council members strive to promote harmonious relations throughout the Upper School and are responsible for planning special events and projects.
Nansemond-Suffolk Academy is a coeducational, college preparatory private school located in Suffolk, VA. Pre-kindergarten - Grade 12.